orange juice in a teacup, two fat blunts rolled-and-ready—Sour Diesel is king. This toasted life: spent and spindrift, halfway-to-plastered in a braided hammock, listening to mosquito drillbits hunker down in razor palms as artificial waterfalls pulse; the paradise paradigm. May my life be unintelligible and glib. May each rampant lizard genuflect and hyper-flex within these hidden days, curled in glade shade like grass snakes I lose sight of—the hours slip. This Floridamyth Existence-Fleck complex you’ve adopted has spiraled totally out of control. Enough with the gator inflatables, swim wings, and listless lists of plastic scrap each careless sketch leaves behind. Talk about survivor guilt—every turtle egg buried warm within the dune floe on Neptune Beach could be the last one of its kind. What do you want most in the world, Peace Frog? Tell Amber the prominent blue vein in her eyelid rises like that primordial-indescribable ember color sparking one second before flame. When I was a boy, I wandered barefoot through a dazed red dawn, lost my way away from home and found the endlessly erased map of dune-stretched ions swirling my heavy iris—thanks is a word like a carpenter ant crawling up skyscraper: strong enough.
FORREST RAPIER has appeared in Best New Poets, Dead Mule, Levee, Red Rock Review, and many other journals. He has received fellowships from Looking Glass Falls, Sewanee Writers Conference, and has also held writing residencies at the University of Virginia and Brevard College. He recently received his MFA from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro where he now lives.
Cover image by GJ Gillespie.
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