Your mama says I´m a druggard bum

Your mama says I´m a druggard bum
by Peter Grzywacz
Your mama says I´m a druggard bum
and that she don´t like my gutter boots. Even
after I clean them she says they stain her rug.
When she sees me in the street she crosses
in front of taxis. Yesterday she asked me if I
sell. I joked, ¨If the price is good.¨ and that´s
why last night you found me outside the gate.
But ask anybody around and I´m sure they will tell you that I’ve strayed from you for another.
And ask me, there are none such as you.
The first time I met your sister,
she told me my sweat was green.
Told me her friend was gonna be a doctor
and if I paid her 500 pesos, he´d check my pelt for leprosy.
When I bang my ring on your gate and call your name. She bolts the door.
I see her spying, she´s concerned. Now that leprosy checkup is free.
But you know me and how well I know you–
Your papa gave me his wooden brush and said I should start buffing black shoes. Said
I should stop huffing the hag-bag and sniffing all that sand. In honest, I try to take care of him;
Tell the street thieves to leave him alone. But he walks down Tepito with a cigar, a GPS, and suit.
So when he tells me to come back next year after I´ve professioned up: I nearly lose my blood.
but you should know by now I´ll never leave you.
And then there is your mute grandma, picking at her white curls afternoon till dawn under the lamp.
And I thought she approved as she let us sleep in the backroom. But when you went to school
she served me dog food in cold water. And I ain´t gonna fight with a crusty 80 year old bag.
But you know that I love you.  No matter what they tell me or you, I´ll never be far from your window.

0 thoughts on “Your mama says I´m a druggard bum

  1. Nice prose.
    Dear Druggard Bum,
    Stay away from my daughters. I will shoot you like a dog you come waging that tale around here. A tongue that long can’t be good for my future grandchildren. Some might say concern for ones children’s future children smacks of eugenics but I’d rather smack of eugenics than regret not being appalled at her bad judgement when it might have made a difference.
    Huff harsher paint fumes. Breath deeper each time. More than you, the world desires your absence.
    Haggard Survivor of Lapsed Bummery (Local 582)

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