I Was a Washington General

by: Jason Joyce

If you decide to sit at home thinking about the episode of True Life where the guy gets calf implants—

Turn to page _____________

If you turn out like your mother- ironing wrapping paper after birthday parties-

See below:

Simple vows of easy come easy go
they opened their mouths
confetti came out

then your father moved away from the city,
room and board at a Volvo dealership,
taking sink showers in the staff bathroom,
vending machine meals of reduced-fat Wheat Thins and Diet Coke

at least that’s what you figured when he didn’t come home

Unsure if you were to blame for the neighbor’s flooded house when you left the sprinklers on,
unsure if the house fire was caused by your compost pile

keep it quiet like the summer your brother dropped Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire on top of your little brown lizard

savage glitter

a rheumy house haunted by doubt

paid to lose

night in, night out

I remember where I am when it’s time to go

and it’s been four days since you’ve made your own bed

Would you rather drown or be burned alive?