Back to Shane Allison's Artist PageTo the Artist's Page                  Back to the Unlikely Stories home pageTo our home page
Displaced in New YorkTo Shane Allison's previous piece     How Come You Didn't Tell Me He Has AIDS?To Shane Allison's next piece

case of emergency

Bags beneath mama's eyes from sleepless nights.
She paces the floor wondering if you're okay,

worrying where she's going to get the money to pay fancy lawyers
who have nothing better to do but look pretty  in Armani suits.

What were you thinking locked in jail?
Tell me about those suicide contemplations

behind iron clad bars?
You stare in a tray

of standard issued bologna,
spoon out roach legs in the applesauce.

Fantasize of pork chops cooked all the way through.
Think of hot showers without a man's ass in your face.

Don't come here with your promises vacant as cheap hotels.
Promises in my face like bad breath

like my niece's dirty diapers.
I wipe my ass with your promises.

Mama's eyes are a burning inferno in this family.
She can't think straight.

Shards of lies caught in skin.
She borrows money from friends and daughter.

She's got the gall to ask her for money from her child support check.
Plead for every red cent from aunts and uncles.

I tell her nothing is as bad as it seems
as she settles her nerves with a glass of Pepsi.

I curse him out in the car driving from Popeye's Chicken.
You're finally bailed out.

Your personal possessions are returned
in a vanilla envelope.

The female officer who staked you out
at E-Z Serv knows you'll be back.

which is why we brace ourselves making

a list of aunts, uncles and blue-collar friends
to call in case of emergency.

To the top of this pageTo the top of this page