Alex Wells Shapiro

A Fable about

Leaning begins pre

panging the body

deadening itself scar

tissue hardening

MORAL:          in

stead of recovery sole

flattening under remains

of the more composed leg.

Alex Wells Shapiro

Revving through resistance sprayed

sparks are the wake of dragged

booted wheels digging uneven grooves

into a side street like a drunken snail

trail, trunk subs roaring Soundcloud

ads over its grinding axels crooking

determined for the tips who dressed

its shaky frame with cylinders tints

and the good gas rest upon

Alex Wells Shapiro

Insulated in Saran wrap

n expanding steam cloud

incites my detector’s

saturating chirps preceding

a hallway detector by a beat

like a stable EKG.

My hollow door rattles

rapt, and naked and

sopping I open to neighbors

clustered with blankets

and buckets of water. My apologies

are met with relief, laughter &

retreat: “Gotta be careful”

“Few sparks we’re

all liable to burn”

“That’s how Chicago

got built y’know”

Alex Wells Shapiro

Sliding my credit

card into 7-eleven’s

reader, the TB test

bubbled on my wrist

catches the counter

edge & pops. A splash

of pus masks my blushing

cheeks & the screen. Done

transacting I resheathe my

card & scurry out, head down,

jerky, Coke, & smokes cradled,

steps spreading a mess garnished

by my forgotten receipt.