ISSUE 2: FALL 2015 / LOS ANGELES POETS / POETRY

“Commute” by Dennis Cruz

driving to work, hung-over of course,
mad at my i-pod for not delivering
an appropriate shuffle mix. mad at the traffic
for being so god damn relentless.
i point my phone out the window
and take pictures of the clouds.
something to scroll through
for my drunken instagrams later.
i mumble some half ass prayers
that i don’t expect to be answered:
help me emerge, help me become
help me let go, help me ask for help.
why did Phillip Seymour Hoffman
have to od? why not Rush Limbaugh?
i make a mental note to look into
podcasts or something. maybe some
joe frank for the ride home, but somehow
i already know i’ll forget. i take a mental
count of how many pills and beers i have left
at home. how much scotch i drank last night.
calculate when i’ll have to go out and get
more of all three. i make a promise to finally
do some writing this week. hoping that it
will help me relieve some of the pressure
i’ve been feeling, building up in my chest.
i feel anxious. nervous. like i’ve forgotten
something important. or like something
terrible is about to happen. i picture Robin
Williams hanging from his belt, his face purple,
maybe his tongue out. i don’t want to think
about that shit. or syria, or ebola, or black kids
getting shot by white cops.
so i picture my wife’s ass,
knowing when i get home
tonight, i’ll be too wound up to enjoy it then.
it works for a while.
i’m so fucking tired of olympic blvd.
i cross over to 8th st., hoping to run across
some latinas in tight pants. that always
makes me feel better.
anything to get my mind off the job
i’m racing toward.
anything to get my mind off period.
maybe tonight i’ll get some writing done,
after the pill-popping, drinking, smoking,
instagramming ….. and whatever the hell else.
i sure could use a change of routine,
i sure hope i’ve got the stones to make one.

Dennis Cruz is a Los Angeles native who has been writing and performing his work for over 20 years. His latest collection of poetry Moth Wing Tea is published by Punk Hostage Press.

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