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Saturday, February 08, 2014


by Johnnie Clemens May

                in memory of Philip Seymour Hoffman

the golden girl shimmers
boasting a patina of self-
faith slathered over doubt’s
graveyard of gone
its mausoleum of
now blank
like the apple white
rush that routs me
from alone
from all this
pain, a vault
of No and Never
of Can’t and Should.

Prick me, pick me
up and smash
me into pleasure’s
concrete wall.
Make me less
real—not feel.

Prick me, stick
me into a vat
of black tar
I’ll label forget

a place euphoric
where Chihuly blue
twists and floats
until I moan
“It’s gone, all gone.”

Numb me, dumb
me now, please.
I swear I need
just one more hit
one juice up
the vein
and down
into the belly

of believe and
be. Of clear
then cloud.

Johnnie Clemens May has an MFA in poetry from Pacific University and teaches English and creative writing at Glendale Community College in Arizona. She has had poems recently published in Mused and Gila River Review.