• Poetry

Joe Matulich - Pedestrian, Kids in Spring


The crosswalk push button is all wires and havoc— a mad scientists workstation, four-way red, congestion and exhaust. I will kick the street light or slingshot the probing eye; spend a little time in handcuffs. I will don the proper safety equipment, and measure for accuracy. I measure twice, castrate once the gutter ball bowler in the crisp ocean air. He shows no remorse. My heart praises his lack of remorse. It strengthens my lack and comforts my ignorance. My application for handicap parking has been revoked. My limp wasn't comprehensive, though choreographed well enough, I beared no documentation— just a limp boogie-woogie. I had heart though, shit—

I had heart.

Kids in Spring

Children in wildflowers read a picture

book, dissect dandelions, the girl takes

imaginary photos with her dads

broken camera, his graduation

gift. The behemoth rhododendron tree

centuries old, so giant, passersby

stop traffic just to snap a quick photo.

Some call it the hillbilly house. The grass

grows shoulder high to the little ones, but

dad mows trails through the blades; to the apple

tree, and to the cedar shack, where a stray

man slept before dad took him to his farm

in Lake Stevens. Deer move down the driveway,

they want to cross the road— those jaywalkers.

Joel is a native american father, husband, disabled veteran, bird watcher, commuter, poet, maintenance electrician. He lives in Tulalip, WA


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