While the World Is Sleeping

Three poems
by Damian Rucci
I sold my soul
to a grocery store
in town
for eleven dollars
an hour
and it doesn’t look
like I’ll be going anywhere
anytime soon, ‘cause nowhere
else pays that
seven days a week
ten hours a day
they don’t care
if I smoke dope
as long as the job is done
the world sleeps
while third shift chews
at my flesh like a plague
I can’t even work sober
when will the sun rise?
how many more days in autumn?
how many more nights
chasing my youth through
these frozen food aisles
praying dawn brings
She likes to fuck and she likes to fight.
Sometimes both at once. She’s a walking, screaming match––
a family fist-fight. She’s a hoarse-voiced, bloody-nosed knockout.
On date nights I’d ask, “What do you feel like eating?”
But as every man knows, that question leads to nowhere
so we’d stick with fast food and Netflix––
and argue about everything and anything under the moon.
She’s a super nova in leggings and a sweatshirt
with knuckles clenched. She’s a beautiful car wreck,
a cut-throat beauty queen. She’s as dramatic as an atomic bomb.
She’s a lit match in a tank of gasoline––
and the only thing that she was ever willing to let go of was me.
For Charles Joseph,
“Don’t smoke drugs with girls man,” He said.
We’re seven quasi poets, throwing back drinks—
throwing back conversations like gatling guns of poems.
And I can’t believe I’m sitting here right now.
Six months ago, I just sat at my desk and chewed
these little blue pills staring at the blank screen in silence.
Each morning begged for the nightly end to come
as I wore creases through my work-boots and my soul.
But we’re here now! Poets! Lost souls battling
this modern day blasphemy with words just begging
to be heard for once in this life. And maybe to be understood.
Damian Rucci is a writer and poet from New Jersey whose work has appeared recently in Eunoia Review, Beatdom, Yellow Chair Review, and Indiana Voice Journal. He is the founder and host of Poetry in the Port, one of the Damned Poets, and the author of Tweet and Other Poems (MDP 2016), Symphony of Crows (2015), and The Literary Degenerate Blog.

Published by


Scott Thomas Outlar hosts the site 17Numa.wordpress.com where links to his published poetry, fiction, essays, interviews, reviews, and books can be found. He is a Best of the Net and three-time Pushcart Prize nominee. Scott's poetry books include: Songs of a Dissident (Transcendent Zero Press, 2015), Chaos Songs (Weasel Press, 2016), Happy Hour Hallelujah (CTU Publishing, 2016), and Poison in Paradise (Alien Buddha Press, 2017). Scott is a member of The Southern Collective Experience; he also serves as an editor for Walking Is Still Honest Press, The Blue Mountain Review, The Peregrine Muse, and Novelmasters.

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