My Murder Typically Went Like This:
  Paddy Scott

on Princess St. every other Saturday night
a plaintive moan for the mortal wound
then the mother reassuring her victim son
It’s not so bad...not so bad,
except the silver Sunbeam toaster, a two-slicer,
sat on the kitchen counter aligned with his moon head;
the Saturday night brush-cut a painful reveal
on its shiny silver metal like a funhouse mirror;
the same undulating skull he saw there
guiding that blind plough horse through his scalp’s red field
not the countenance of his heroic dreams.

He would cry, what have you done with that sharp fellow!
but for the clippers’ relentless humming,
counterpoints around remnant tufts of significant random stalks
and her pretence that come morning things would improve for him -
the same consolation uttered by every shitty barber
or the lessons absorbed by fallout victims, that one
should never stare directly at a sun beam;

now he saw the truth to either enlightened axiom
as the toaster’s photons disturbed the light around faith
today face to face with the ugliness displayed like variations
upon a theme, self-reflection waffling in a mirror
designed to present first facts about life,
reflecting not what he might hope for but the will of the family;

outliers to future expression become lines in a poem
about a little boy’s godforsaken future
set in stainless steel visions,
delivered in a light tone,
with potential for so much darker.

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