Crazy Eyes

by Gary V. Powell

The boy across the street

The kid with Holocaust eyes

Lids like shades pulled half down

Whites like crushed Easter bunnies

Pupils like black holes sucking up the light.


The kid with a testosterone chip

Instead of a brain, an  XYY chromosome

 Like some demon coursing through his veins

Tried to blind another boy at a Boy Scout jamboree

Choked a girl who called him weird in the eighth grade hall.


We watched out our window

Sunday night when EMS, police and firemen

Converged, lights flashing like a circus come to town

Watched that cop swagger the boy into his caged back seat.

Handcuffed, bloody, and hangdog, momentarily held prisoner of war.


The mother blamed it on his new drugs

The daughter said he'd attacked with a razor

A younger brother claimed he'd broken glass, smashed

A bottle against his own head, and like Lakota taking scalp

At the Little Big Horn, ripped hair away from his skull and laid it bare.

So where does crazy end and evil begin?

Does the disparity lie in the eye of the beholder?

Is the difference appraised by quarts of blood spilled?

Slit wrist versus slashed throat, gauged out eyes, and organs devoured?

Or is it measured by hearts broken, and does the difference make a difference?