Bubblegum Cigarettes Were A Thing

Bubblegum Cigarettes Were A Thing

Woman in a white sedan, signals her disapproval

at the powdered sugar puff

from my bubblegum cigarette,

hard and pink

in its white wrapper.

Smells better than Camels,

Newports or Marlboros.

I’m thinking.

I giggle and continue my glide

up Garfield grinning.

Found a book

of matches.

Strike one and toss it.

Dry lawn its landed in

starts to burn


in a circle white flame black grass.


Pat it out and continue

my stride

on the opposite side, of Garfield.

Heart racing.

Did anyone see me?

I’m thinking.

Turn the corner.

Bladder senses,

we’re close.

Speed up my pace,

walk past

the corner-house

the front of ours,

Damn these fences.

Make my way

across the never-ending porch

Past door door door door

doors we never open.


my key move quickly

through the foyer,

French doors.  What’s so French about ’em?

Dining room and hallway.

The bathroom.


The walls in here are off-

white, not dark

like the front of the house.

Two windows,

two doors,

too vulnerable.

I won’t stay in here long.

Quickly wash hands, and

Exit the door near and go up the stairs to our room open the closet to find eldest of three looking down the wideness of my eyes surely mirror his as he brings the flame down from his glowing, face fully exposed and empty, still, dressed in whites.  He doesn’t belong, here.  Silence.  I’m thinking. When you look at me with those eyes and wonder, yes, I know what cocaine looks like when it’s looking at me, when I’m looking at you, thinking…

Bubblegum cigarettes were a thing.


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