by Gary Hardaway

The Upside of Evil

If human beings
were any damn good
we wouldn't have literature.

Exhortation on the Sea of Postliteracy

Cling to the lifebuoy of language
even as the buoy takes on water
and you sink below the waves
into the abyss of anachronism.

Rhetorical Advice

It can't be “Black”.
Make it Anthracite,
Obsidian, or Shadow.
Something that glimmers
its opacity— nothing so
pedestrian as black.

The Newest Mop Is No Defense Against the Sediments

Whatever ingenious device they hawk,
we'll never win
the ongoing battle with dirt.
It will bury us.

Cross Town

The watched watch
dominates the lives
of regulated men
who know

when the shift ends

there's very little time
to drive crosstown
and be on time
for the second shift.