Two Poems by Jeff Griffin 




I fall quickly
several times. I scream,
try to find out where they were and why
they did not say why it took so long.

I sit in the front corner,
hide behind a stool to listen to a song. I do not know
if I’m going to disappear because I’m too close

(and everything is free).

The motel has a bathroom with glass walls,
sliding glass doors outside the room.

A black car and a trailer. The known nightmare—
accidentally scratched or sunk. Then more:
The collapse of a folding knife.

Yet everything seemed fine...
That lasted 45 minutes—

we remained perfect and meaningless.






Quite a ways from camp
or home or wherever we were.

I forced myself to wake up.
My teeth were numb, I spit them out.
That kind of victory.

A very frustrating table—

She had eaten the remaining two sandwiches and hot dogs.
Teresa pushed me aside and my mother was in the wash.
She undressed a scream

slow as ash.

Montrose is exposed to half the water.
I will say hello, but her face will melt into people
I do not know. Freckles full of freckles.

Find the exit through the gate. It is also like a motel,
like an uneven sunburn on his back—the ambulance
leaves without me. Slabs of highway fly apart.

We stay upright. A few people
might linger behind, and I might
say something to them

right into the dirt.