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Thursday, July 19, 2007


by Jon Wesick

Little things made me apprehensive: logic books
falling off the shelves, Consumer Reports
shredded in the mailbox, the TV changing channels
to the 700 Club or a Star Wars movie.
An orange, prison jumpsuit appeared in my closet.
There were bloody fingerprints on the bananas.

Dad learned his health-insurance policy had vanished
after hair-growth gel made him sprout breasts.
Most frightening of all were the newscasters
who seemed to grow fangs as they introduced phrases
like family values, death tax, and judicial restraint.

What caused these strange events?
I scoffed at mom’s suggestion of a poltergeist
until I felt a cold spot outside her bedroom.
Inside I found Ronald Reagan’s ghost
poking holes in mom’s diaphragm with a thumbtack.
The Great Communicator grinned, wobbled his head,
and disappeared in a puff of high-sulfur smoke.

Jelly beans did not appease him. Our neighbors
moved from suburbia to the inner city
soon after Congress passed the bankruptcy law.
When pointy teeth protruded from dad’s curled lip,
I barricaded myself behind my bedroom door.

I’ve eaten most of the granola bars
but still have a squirt gun loaded with holy water.
I’ll make a break for it at dawn.

Jon Wesick has a Ph.D. in physics, has practiced Buddhism for over twenty years, and has published over a hundred poems in small press journals such as American Tanka, Anthology Magazine, The Blind Man’s Rainbow, Edgz, The Kaleidoscope Review, Limestone Circle, The Magee Park Anthology, The Publication, Pudding, Sacred Journey, San Diego Writer’s Monthly, Slipstream, Tidepools, Vortex of the Macabre, Zillah, and others. His chapbooks have won honorable mentions twice in the San Diego Book Awards.