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  • Keith Banner

Indoor Swimming Pool Smell

everything was a pile

of shit

when I was a kid


if something

went wrong

it stayed in place


as in: washing

machine on the fritz?

here we come laundromat


grass needs

cut?

don't worry about it


weeds turn

into

lullabies after a while


big palm

trees

of pretend


and not even that

just

what it is: weeds, weeds, a bottle of vodka in the weeds


the house wasn't anything to start

with: 2-bedroom

yellow-brick ranch


the size

of a TV

dinner


and everything

turning

to shit, 1979


the kitchen sink

stopped up?

let it go


until the plumbing

consists of

a tupperware bowl


under the sink

catching

all the slime from washing dishes


and trash?

don't pay for pickup

put the bags of it in a

little white

shed

at the back of the carport


until

the smell

gags you as you wait for the school bus


or maybe

burn the trash in the backyard

like pioneers


a dirt-circle

filled with

blackened pringles cans


and

melted bread bags,

poisonous cinders in October air


the electric gets shut off

too

bad checks bounce the fuck off the walls


you run out of gas

you take

something really old back to the store


but

then one day he comes in

with wonderful news


some buddy of his

gives him

a month-long pass


to the sheraton inn

his wife manages

the indoor pool


near the interstate

brand new motel

and we go


me my dad and mom

and sister

escaping end-times


maybe 2 months

before the sheriff

kicks us out


and there is this

intoxicating

smell


chlorine

heat

fogged-up windows


people

without any troubles

and then sometimes


no people

just us

not wanting to go home



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