on the last day, the vampires opened the caskets, crept
out of basements, mausoleums
underground bunkers, to find a world
peopled by the shambling
dying and dead, a radioactive
landscape glowing as red and molten
as the day the Earth first
began to cool. they strutted around
for the first few hours, kings of the world
before becoming sick themselves
from feeding off of
the radioactive dead
the dead blood burning like white lightning
all the way down. soon, even the last vampire
shuddered into dust
long before the rays of the sun pinked
the flaming horizon.
The Night Out
on our knees we
drag the rope
make a circle
to keep the snakes out. stake down the tent
roll out the sleeping bags, set
the camp stove
on low, make
soup. the children’s eyes glow
in the dying
light of the setting sun, cheeks
pink with anticipation
of sleeping under the stars. moonlight
makes the shadows creep
far across the desert and up into
my head against
my husband’s chest and dream.
hand in hand, fingers locked
in a bright show
of marital bliss, smile for
the outside world
to see. no reflection of nightly
rituals of blood
and bone, of skin against metal
the room with a
drain in the floor. her smile is
carefully controlled, quiet
years of hiding
a mouth full of
chipped, dying teeth, lips rouged to hide the hairline
splits in her flesh, the way the
in too many directions
when she tries to speak. he shelters her with
his body in public, banishing questions from
friends and family who ask
why she never calls anymore.
you’re the new guy so you work the graveyard shift
and the boss has finally gone home,
you can smoke a cigarette in peace
no sneaking around the corner.
the garbage trucks clean up the streets.
you watch the last of the drunk girls stumble out,
some go home alone
some fight with their phone.
the city is finally yours.
just a faraway hum of an ambulance
no taxi horns
no one is left to ask anything of you.
and the soft grey clouds
reach over the low tenements
like an exhale of breath
and if you listen closely
you can almost hear god in the silence
whispering the resonance of something you used to know by heart
but can’t quiet remember.
the last day has left
and the new one hasn’t quite come.
it’s a feeling almost like happiness.
you can love anything
under the light of the moon.
it’s another story