The last time
a gun fired this close to my head
was a dice game on the corner to the left of home
a sly word suddenly turned to spit and shout
as my Dad's plant foot pushed on the gas
my head pushed to the floor by Mom's forearm and
the tire burn burst mixed with gunpowder in my nose
during the first rack of my rental Glock's slide
what I notice most is the resistance of it
a hundred rubber-bands coiled inside a smooth polymer
insisting on closing the hole I'm suppose to spread
the residue of someone's blood still bakes
under blacktop rarely repaved.
old shells crimped by truck and timberland
are scattered in a backyard overtaken by weed
I click the black chiclet under my index
a rail of metal trapdoors into my palm
Snap it, a man in plaid says
with a distracted voice in the hurried store.
two hand grab it like a small neck
but not tight because this is meant to be fun
the small caliber rounds one by one
as a dark thunder cracks past my headgear
And it is such a delicate time.
The plaid man tell me to relax.
of the minute dance of bullets on countertops
blocks around my birth place
exploding from the corner bar and the lingering red
after the fact. In the past like a ratty winter coat.
Right now every other summer day.
A 14 year old girl in an American Eagle sweater
one cheap sheetrock hold to right
steadies barbie pink rifle at piece of paper. Laughing
a bus driver from around the way pays cash
buys fingerling rounds in an efficient cardboard box
popping quarter-sized holes through poker card targets.
I try to remember
how to steady the sights. Toggle a cheap switch
that moves a line drawn thick browed stranger
toward the back of the room and breathe
searching for the worth
as the black in my hand screams fire towards his face
on my mark.