A Poem: The News

Fifty percent of our marriages ended
in stalemate, the rest in restaurants.
We all tested above average
as drivers, a phenomenon known
online for its leap the median meme.
A pie-chart infographic showcased
pie shortfalls with an empty piece
bigger than six o’clock.
On what remained of Main Street,
the most popular building types
were brutal and Beirut.
Behind our poor investments
hid the Swiss, according to sources
who slurred precision into a slur.
More people trained as mountain men
and women than financiers
and lawyers, whose numbers we had
financed longer than the law allowed.
The trend where workers threw
themselves in front of a bullet
train shocked the stock market.
In a survey, area hospitals estimated
railroad-related fatalities at a hundred
possibilities from none to untracked.
The top tactic to cope with sorrow
started with cans of chocolate frosting.
Nine out of ten dentists
were identified by dental records.
The tenth dentist was identified
by investigators as a person of interest
and an alleged pediatric practitioner.
If we took the black medicine,
nothing bad would happen.
If we flipped the black switch to obey,
something bad would happen
to a stranger in a separate room.
In mirrors, ECNALUBMA became danger.
One cure for our hunger
required a runaway dump truck.
After the break, the Indians won
and thunderstorms were coming.

 

Steven D. Schroeder’s second book, “The Royal Nonesuch” (Spark Wheel Press), won the Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award from Southern Illinois University. His poetry is available or forthcoming from “New England Review,” “Crazyhorse,” “Pleiades” and “Michigan Quarterly Review.” He lives and works in St. Louis, Missouri.

Photo by Attilio D’Agostino. Selected by the Editors of River Styx Literary Magazine

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