• Keith Banner

Salem Light 100s

so there was this

woman i worked with

at kentucky fried chicken

in anderson, in

when i was 16


boy was i

fucking miserable

this woman was

named Patsy Taylor Vaught

she had the shiniest

platinum blonde hair

face made

up like she was always going

to a party in 1964

that lana turner hair

imitation of life all the way

and i think she told me

her ex-husband tried to kill her

with an ax

or maybe he tried to kill someone


who knows?

i mean does it really matter anyway?

but god

did i want to be patsy's friend

she was pure style

and grit

4 kids

all of them delinquents

her daughter would call

the kfc screaming

and patsy would give me the phone

and i would listen to

her daughter's foul mouth until she stopped

and I'd say let me get your mom

she lived in a big old decrepit house

a mansion in my mind

the kids destroyed parts of it

2 hyperactive sons, twins, with baseball bats etc

patsy and me would have really

long conversations about

her life

while putting cole slaw into little

styrofoam containers

she'd let me bum a few of her salem light


every shift

i guess she was like

a replacement mom

she was like

this star to me

i don't know

i thought about her today no real reason, and of

course googled that shit

she died

in 2006

i remember her favorite song

was by that silver-haired devil named

charlie rich

and her car


it was a maroon monte carlo

the size of a float

in a parade she was always

in, some sad glamorous




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