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American Vacations

If you are honest with yourself, you’d say life is disappointing
& disappointingly incomplete, more than just a little something
Is missing, like flat soda on a scorching day with no ice; the ice
Machine’s busted a sign posted at the truck stop. You’re a fan
 
Of crushed over cubes anyway. At the motel you peek under
The Murphy bed and instead of customary dust bunnies you find
Actual monsters. The problem with humanitarian traps is once
You trap them you have to deal with releasing them somewhere.
 
You’re not a killer after all. Mornings you wake hopeful till
The bathroom mirror butts in. Your family would run smoothly if
Everyone committed to sign language. Arguments would be more
Vanilla compact. Jerked around by your choke collar, your life tugs
 
You in this direction, not that. This Saturday, instead of a picnic, tour
The countryside to select the idyllic location for your grave. Isn’t this fun
Kiddos? Some knucklehead is scratching his lottery tickets while you’re
Trying to prepay for your fill-up of high test. Mostly you wish you had more.
 
Or less. Sometimes even weather fucks you in the ass. Historically speaking,
People paid off their mortgages, had mortgage burning shindigs,
Whippersnappers torched draft cards and millionaires fired
Their non-Cuban cigars with “fitty” dollar bills. Now people are wicked
Different. It’s all very different. The only liberating burning is our skin
On vacation. You’d rather not leave a child or dog unattended in a car,
The windows rolled up, on a sweltering beach-day. And what do you do
About the pieces of fruit rotting in the bowl, drosophila incubating on
 
The browning bananas and bruised mangos? This is your life now: the heater
And air conditioner simultaneously stuck on full-blast and time’s a stashed snowball
With a piece of glass meticulously placed in the center. You tuck it in the freezer,
Saving it for summer, snowball monopoly. But there are too many flip-flops

In the world, more flip-flops than feet. Successful people vacation with successful

People. That’s why the unsuccessful spill red wine at parties and their suits seem
Wrinkled, out of date. Even Freud dreaded, some days, seeing his patients,
Unable to drag himself to the office. Let’s all call in sick for no reason!
Some people nap through their lives and suffer insomnia during
Their deaths. Suspend all your superfluous subscriptions.
You might as well change your phone number. Not unlisted though.
You’re not completely anti-social. Just once before you die, China
Would like to visit you. In the grocery, cows with anxiety
Between the meat and milk sections organize an impromptu stampede.
While brushing your teeth the foamy truth rabidly seeps out. Finally,
In this life you are only a tourist and your camera is disposable.