Two Texts

Rupert Wondolowski

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All night there was a hard rain on the old roof,
the rain was pills.
A torrential downpour of pills.
Turning on the shower, from the
the showerhead come pills.
Swirling down the graying drain
gaudy colored Janet Leigh heads -
    or pills.
With breakfast there is the kitchen TV,
the most modest of the house
and it speaks of all the latest pills.
Things to take pills for,
what pills can cause -
sometimes worse than what
you hope they prevent.
Old man golf pills.
Under the milk truck
trumpeter swans.
Fuzzy Priapus sweater.
Beaver Scouts scale a slippery cascading
wall of pills.
An actor plays a doctor dispensing pills.
At the doctor's you are
preceded by a young sales person
dressed like Vegas who has dragged in
a showcase of pills.
On the walls are pictures
of pills and pills
descending illustrated human insides.
The secretary is a pill.
Hard to swallow.
All the walls are immaculate white
all the better not to come
between you and pills.

On the street there is the one
who is off his pills.
Red-faced stalker.
Or the one swimming past
her gullet in too many pills.
Her chin has folded up
into her cheeks through a
beige flap of fear.
Each passing mouth
is one pill away
from the answer,
or a breakdown,
or a stunned liver -
experts call it "sticky blood" -
bingo palace slashed
bongo mudslide.

The Indians once said
this slice of land is a sleeping giant,
that moss covered hill is
its shaggy head.
All the rocks scattered
in view are pills
awaiting the giant's waking.
No, actually pills weren't
invented until
Robert Louis Stevenson
called out pale from
the heavily upholstered
couch and his aunt,
remarking on the similarity
between his long thin face
and that of a basset hound,
stepped into the room of indiscretions
and whipped up something
that would make Robert
chew fire and know sky
in a "seated-next-to-you-
kind of way.


the clabber of squirrels

I licked some chopped liver off my finger. I ate a Ritz cracker. I rummaged in the refrigerator of 7-Up. Oh, I felt sick.

I see
       the hole in the back pocket from
       when our friends sat in the tub
I see
       you crawled out the top -
       Dad's chair, I catch my breath
I see
       the tiny cigarette burn on the left thigh,
       fuzzing up the air

       Jim said I was beautiful. Was it possible? She nodded at me, uh huh, while I did something to olives and cream cheese.

I can smell
       bare feet, cooking dinner,
       a lumpy gray sweatshirt
I can smell
       his fingers in Mom's cheese dip
       potholes and pitfalls
       colorful and close
I can smell
       past your shoulders, under my arms,
       flat pillows, limp sheets
       and disposable shards

Such was the situation on that hot jungle morning when they invaded our camp.
"The Rabbi's here," Lulu squealed and the sky turned black.

Rupert Wondolowski is a graying backyard snowman at dusk. The kids are inside transported by "Tour of Duty" bloodbaths. He watches immobilized from charcoal eyes as a Doberman approaches and a raven lands on his corncob pipe. He is also the author of The Origin of Paranoia as a Heated Mole Suit and The Whispering of Ice Cubes.