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What I Learned at My Bodega at Midnight

You can keep your gallstones in a jar (if you have them)
A baby turned over 3 times will stop crying (if you have one)
The Power of Attraction (the book) will change your life
Drink and Smoke (it’s all good)
Think Positive
                 (you’ll be fine).

Ice cream,
  toilet paper, a tampon run at midnight
                           makes people friendlier

Mrs. Bodega is cooking up something spicy in the curtained backroom
The table is set for dinner
  toilet paper, a tampon run at midnight
                           They keep their country’s hours

Ask the proprietor anything:
                           Will my cat get better?
                           Is this a false positive?
                                      I thought anything positive was a good thing

I have cockroaches in my apartment
Do you sell boric acid?

Can I see your gall stones floating in formaldehyde?
What is that thing on my back?

Immigration makes for a smarter America

I’ll just stay in this dusty corner
Name your price
The night brings strange traders.

  Vicki Iorio __

Ted Nugent Goes Hunting

in the woods
with gold tip arrows
long bows

Excalibur crossbows.
He posts pictures of deer
meeting their pointed deaths.

But what of the swan puncturing
a suburban pond red, not knowing the arrow
breasting its feathers.

And what of the swan's mate
circling the water in a panic
Should we pull out the arrow

Call animal control
Call 911
Call myself out

for this outrage
while my tongue is still furry
from fast food meat?

I swoon at the memory of my first Big Mac
the romance of Golden Arches.
I look for the slinger of arrows

I am one with the village
in search of our villain.
The swan sinks in the pond,

meat rises in my throat
like a chicken bone.

  Vicki Iorio__

En Pointe

I have an apron full of overdue
so I secret hand jobs and blow jobs
on plastic furniture, in dirty breakrooms,
stocked with rat poison and bleach.
Boss skin rancid and mine
not that much better.

My secrets are headaches and cramps
I take to work with me. I secret Kleenex
from the bathroom, stuff it in my Kotex
on heavy days. Something hot drips
down my tired legs. Thank Kmart
for black polyester, pants that hide stains
when I’m on clean up duty, throwing away
napkins drenched with ketchup.

My secret is an assault of 180/120 on a good day.
My world is yellow static when I can’t afford
or forget to take my meds. I saw an ad on the subway,
a couple on a Caribbean adventure. I have no time
for adventure, unless there’s an hour between jobs,
when I put my feet up and watch Dancing with the Stars.

I close my eyes and I am diva born,
feather light, a spirit raised up by angels.

  Vicki Iorio__