The Night Fly

the reverend poured his old yardstick out across his concrete yard

setting strings and drinking gin out of his fathers mason jar.

he was a good shooter, he could’ve been something more,

at least that’s what the others say,

but the reverend plays indifferent, waving at the neighbors

giving a sample screw a spoke

he dresses in his county suit three times a week, one button off or four.

each sunday in July, the reverend cleans out his Ford

food crumbs, 50ml bottles and minutes from the school board.

he drives into town, with his dog, Lewis Snide

picks up a big can of beer, and drinks it in her driveway.

sometimes the afterburn is better than before

most times you fall asleep primed for something more

but each window of the reverend’s life, were places he could reside

content to be a malcontent, driving to a ruptured room on a freeway overpass

he dances half-present to a strange bed, asleep under the dripping drool of the night fly.

the reverend’s two sons and daughters, would come home twice a year

he stank of scotch and soda, and Swisher Sweets snuck on his private pier

giving the oldest second-hand son his signature bad advice.

it took the reverend sixty-two years, to remember his first twenty-nine

remembering a lanky kid with a spot-up three, and hustle you couldn’t buy.

now he rolls around in his circle town, thinking about words he could’ve said

to a girl he used to call on Saturday evenings, a girl named JoAnne Skye.

he likes to think he’s different, he likes to think he had no choice

he reads the book he’s read before, notations on a thin spool of thread

the neighbors say he’s close to lost it, said he’s close to sitting on stand-by

a heart with no color, a good long look tuned to a private eye

yeah you think your different, yeah I’m sure you heard the right advice,

but each night you make your own bed, under the naked eye of the night fly.


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