POETRY
To the Guy With the Donald Trump Bumper Sticker on I-90 East
John Grochalski
Writer of the Month

i can feel your populism from here
in the cool confines of the passenger seat

your window is up too
we both got the a/c blasting, bro

because they sure make america hot these days
caliente or kalinatuh i’d say, much to your chagrin

that is, i’m not much for building walls
or banning people from these shores

but i’d sure like to rip that bumper sicker
off the back of your car

carve a few swastikas in it too, for good measure

if only time and chance
had made us neighbors

i wonder where i guy like you comes from
out of the dark, bloody past of privilege 

or straight from some all-white fantasyland of the mind

coming up behind me and the wife
and then swerving in front of us, thug style, baby

at eighty miles an hour on the I-90 going east

then switching to the other lane
so we’re running neck and neck

sunglasses and your baseball hat pulled low
paul ryan stubble that you forgot to shave

shit, you’re making america great again
by just your being you

taking to the open road
like you own the whole fucking thing

a little capitalist king in his little foreign car
or rather some mindless minion begging to be led 

lost in america between rochester and syracuse
like so many others of your ilk

oh, and sorry about that middle finger
that i gave you

as you zipped up that exit doing sixty
when they wanted you to do thirty

back to that america
that they’re trying to take from you
one run to the border at a time

it’s just habit for me these days
like i just can’t help myself

so call it a cold gesture
on the rough roads of this hard land

or call it fuel for your fire, dude

a warning shot
or an opening salvo

call it whatever you want

…you dumb motherfucker.


John Grochalski is the author of The Noose Doesn’t Get Any Looser After You Punch Out (Six Gallery Press 2008), Glass City (Low Ghost Press, 2010), In The Year of Everything Dying (Camel Saloon, 2012), Starting with the Last Name Grochalski (Coleridge Street Books, 2014), and the novels, The Librarian (Six Gallery Press 2013), and Wine Clerk (Six Gallery Press 2016). Grochalski currently lives in Brooklyn, New York, where the garbage can smell like roses if you wish on it hard enough.