Appropriately Depressing

For Michael Direnzo

They don’t make them like they used to.
“Them” meaning shock collars.
I’m still the baller that I used to be,
only now, in my knee, a pain erupts
whenever it gets cold.
“Get old or die trying,”
is my new personal mantra.
Contrary to what I used to think,
you can’t make a poem out of stomach ulcers.
That’s culture in a nutshell.
As for the idea of Hell,
it’s a process, not a place.
A process that leaves
an aftertaste of rot.
Angst, however, is a place,
a plot whose sole distinguishing feature
is a cabin knotted up in weeds.
I keep a cot in the basement.

-r. miller

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