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lowball, lowbrow, and lowenbrau

dolly madison beams 3:17 in the am, 
while standing sentry over her processed delights
that remind me of more painless times.
nothing is convenient about this location or hour.

the normals are secured behind deadbolts and chains.
the drunks are in the tank or have swerved home or into a ditch.
and the affluent and capricious are cooked on designer drugs
and exchanging potent, viral strains.

then there is my clientele.
saturday morning and at the service to human waste.

the crack head is detoxing beneath the multi-hued awning.
smearing greasy fingerprint on the windexed glass,
and relieving himself in his pants.
the tiny town teen is picked up on the corner,
lured in with malt liquor and lies, 
only to be deposited at sunrise 
with cotton panties turned inside out and a hemorrhaging anus.
and the bangers are out in summer force
with hollow points, and pristine throw away pistols.

the refuse that waxes and wanes in the tides of mlk jr.
why do they name such fucked streets after greats? 

pra-ting-tong warns that six feet of nuisance has deviated in.
he is pawing at his matted brown hair like a dog abandoned in the rain,
and jeans and flannel havenít seen a washer
since he last saw employment.

it is past beer thirty but societyís law will not deter him.
a twelve pack of pbr, 
the order for a carton of gpc menthols
and to empty out the register,
and a 38 in my face.
what is there to say?
how does one converse under the gun?

ďget your anorexic digits off of there.
all youíve succeeded in doing is ringing up two slim jims.
iím the professional, god damn it; see now it is open.
christ, iíll take it out, youíre dropping change everywhere.
here: camel menthols.  
they taste better.
though shit.  i dawnlight as a camel rep and have to promote their product.
that is all Iím going to give you so seize it or put me down.
okay, now holster the shooter, take the carton, put the pbr back, 
grab two cases of lowenbrau and walk back out the door.Ē

pra-ting-tong and back to the sewers with the crack head on his tail.  
scooping up the change that spills from his pockets as he uncomfortably
lumbers with his heavy burden.
the man will be on him within a few blocks if others donít get at him first.
at least when they book him,
and they snap the shot, complete with toothless maw grinning,
heíll have an epiphany and bless me: 
because on his report it looks like he has some actual class.

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