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POETRY / Poem / Alex Schmidt


The anti-drink
takes aleatory dips
in the blood, the ante is sprinkled
around the metaphysical rhizome,
the clear droplet with a life of its own
contrary to popular belief, for
belief is something else, is another
vision in another tavern, like as not
or not drinking at all. And the instant
the flexible moment

morphs into meaning,
a parallel spirit riffs: puffy, cross-eyed dogs
lining the back fence brandishing awful spumes
become patron. Makes dinner for the fellas at the end
of the alley
in the neck. And sound
enters the neck
translated into tarantulas
with spiny, green bodies. The drink,
it may cancel itself in striking ways.

And then, no drink.
Or too many. Giddyap! Now, the crown molding of the place
looks doable, needs a bit of work to be relatable. The desert
will always be inchoate. We may never go. I forget,

must I become a hunter or must age-
old nostalgia gel to my teeth like faulty medication? The feldspar
in the attic above the sty, fresh
pantyhose, muskets, and voltaic piles
hang among bounteous weapons
that protect us from going awry.
It’s not a bartender’s art.

Yes, why insist in the absence
of that which is not on tap? Also:
insert red weather here. An invitation
that drinks itself defying impermeability
here. My Mom there. And one day,
a trained gut may speak to the drink
that drinks what is not there, turn to thee
like a dying man turns to his oxygen mask.

But his ears, like crinkled coffins, loosen, flap
sideways like a chicken in the sun.
The chicken becoming the sun.
The morning, the headache,
the new poem.

Alex Schmidt is an avid reader and movie-watcher. But on occasion, about once a day, you will find him thinking about, editing, maybe even writing, a poem. None of his poems have anything to do with his life directly, but he finds this natural in his instinct to make music. Recently, his poems have appeared in The Writing Disorder Journal and Eunoia Review.