William Taylor Jr.

Empty is the New Black

The day crumbles and fails
and we’re half-assed Christs
nailed to the cross 
of whatever’s left of things.

We drink beer in the Tenderloin 
grimace beneath the sun.

The Great American Loneliness
drips from the walls of the sad hotels 
where the poets fuck and die

and the latest thing 
we thought would save us 

we burnt through it in a day.

There’s a guy with a boombox 
strapped to his bicycle playing 
music from another world

where you could still imagine 
something other than 
the dreariness at hand.

There’s a man on a corner 
leaning on the liquor store

he’s got enough losing tickets
scattered at his feet

to build some kind of kite or boat
and get the hell away from here.

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