All of the pokey small town chicken-shit
scratching in the chicken-yard dirt
for power—

the public left hand conserving this
so that the private right hand
could develop that

while sweeping the ever-gathering homeless
under the downtown
welcome mat—

the gerrymandered and the jury rigged,
the zoned, oh, we were good at it,
weren’t we, Mr. Mayor,

your honor, you and I, we were
some team, never defeated,
never caught.

Our foreplay was the ploy
of values, the clean

of straight talk, and the flashing
ordinances that passed
in looks

between us in the council
chambers and before
the press.

We sought the sly impolitics
of love under the table
like a kickback.

Oh some of course suspected,
we had our enemies,
ex-wives, ex-

friends, and even the ex-
exes that had to pass
for friends.

Daily there were deals to broker,
palms to re-grease,
and files, so

many files to open and keep open
—I kept meticulous files—
I managed all of it

for you, sir, I managed everything,
I who now can’t manage
to move or speak.

If you could only see me here,
if you could visit—though
I know you won’t,

you couldn’t—what handler now
would let you?—but if
you could slip in

some night when hardly anyone’s
on duty, and could see
my nurse,

my handler, my chicken come home
to roost, I think the vision of her
would amuse you,

hymning her righteous ha-ha—I’m saved
you’re not, O Jesus  my
loving savior—

while she washes down my body
in that rushed half assed
why bother

way of hers that leaves my legs exposed,
the johnny bunched up
around my thighs,

and the catheter, my last cocksucker,
running out from beneath the
covers shamelessly.