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Christmas Eve in TrailervilleTo Terrance Leightner's previous piece     typer as adversaryTo Terrance Leightner's next piece

the fight

wind cold on my face,
on my bare chest,
on my nipple ring,
on my tattoo,
the wind is cold on my bare legs,
the wood of the porch like ice
under my bare feet
and i know without a doubt
my wife will not stop
though i am pleading, then commanding,
then acquiescing like a dipshit
meeting the drunken neighbor man
halfway up my driveway
avoiding his first punch easily,
using his momentum as a bonus
my fist pile-driving into his bulbous nose.
he is knocked backward into the street.
i know the wife
is enjoying this,
what she started,
but i am too, surprised as ever
by the soft spat! of a fist
splitting nose and lip
how skin slips over skull like rubber and
bounces off the knuckles.
there is just enough light from the 
street lamp
and the concrete grips easily
under my bare feet.
i dance, picking my shots,
able to study the man’s beard,
his large beer gut
as i jab his face, his body,
then randomly jar him with
sweeping rights.
he is out on his feet,
but i am enjoying this too much,
not wanting him to fall.
when he does, i grab his 
greasy hair,
pull up his face and 
pop around his eye sockets
so he will remember me
in the morning.
his brother and his son
pull me off,
tell me it is enough;
his brother’s hand
nearly lingers too long.
a finger on my right hand 
is broken, 
has turned partially white
from the trauma;
the bottoms of my feet
are raw and cut.
but my foe is in much worse shape:
blood soaks the front of his shirt,
and his nose lists at an unnatural angle.
when the cops come
i am icing my hand
and they ask for my side
of the story:
“he insulted my wife,” i say,
“then came onto my property with
malicious intent.”
i do not tell them the wife
had been spoiling,
that i had been spoiling,
that had the neighbor man not sparked off,
the cops would have reported
for a different reason.
such are the whims of Trailerville.
tomorrow, i figured, i would probably go over
and help the neighbor man
finish putting that 350 in his truck.

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