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  • a.p. duvall

I give you dust, and it's still not enough?

the music is bleeding through the back door

from open throat jugglers in parade uniforms

born losers passing around chloroform

and boxing promoters knelt together in the storm

if there's power in these hills who knows of it

or of its form


the coin's been flipped

the trap's been tricked

the messenger has been fooled

tongue-tied and whipped

the clock's been judged 

stones in the path been vilified

somewhere we've been spied

with our hands in the blood

or with our intentions

deaf, dumb and blind


write a letter to friends in small-towns

write to enemies you let down

write to the president and the circus clown

give praise to parking meters for standing ground

dream in your sleep not in the lost and found

heed dreamers who are acting proud

face the volume knob face the burial shroud

plan your future when it's over not during a deal

learn the fiction to decipher what's real

play the guitar badly and prepare to steal

touch your face and describe what you feel

laugh at the acrobat whose charm you stole

glare at the actor who played your role

eat the teeth sitting in the cereal bowl

deep breaths now, you're losing control


split the grin until the broke teeth glow

swing the scythe until the choked sick blow

pull the chains until the roped grease flow

kill the switch until the cope weeds grow

if there's power in this, our valley

whatever power it is, i don't wanna know

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© 2020 by a.p. duvall.
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