BAS POETRY: APOCALYPE BY TAYLOR MELLIGAN
Broke-Ass Stuart is now accepting poetry submissions to be featured in the BAS Poetry: Arts & Culture column. Written & curated by Corinne Avganim.
Last week was weird. An IRL Soprano was appointed and dismissed as our country’s Director of Communications. The New York Subway System experienced its own mini apocalypse. And personally speaking, my trusty stars were all off the charts and majorly fucking with my flow. Not cool, moon, not cool.
Thankfully, there are words and people to make the weird beautiful again. Like Taylor Melligan, who threw down some major prose named after animals, that weren’t really about animals at all. This week, she writes of doom and love…not that the two are mutually exclusive, of course. Either way, her work is always a welcomed distraction to the day. Take a break from the shit show that is life right now, and dive into someone else’s world for a moment. It feels good in here.
by Taylor Melligan
San Francisco, California
In the movies an asteroid hits the Earth
and sends a trillion pieces careening
across the reaches of the universe
Biblical waves wipe out Los Angeles
and monsters weaned on a steady diet
of radioactive nuclear waste
smash Tokyo to smithereens.
In the ensuing riots
windows are shattered
and radios are stolen
and a burning shopping cart rolls into
an empty car that explodes.
overhead peering down
at masked agitators
throwing molotov cocktails
into elementary schools.
Contagion makes blood run
from people’s eyes and mouths
and the mayor rips the police chief’s throat out
with her bare teeth.
In these films Mother Nature or aliens
like infected monkeys from a Pfizer lab
But this is a ruse.
This makes us think that
if only Bruce Willis could detonate an explosive
on the surface of the asteroid in time
and someone can point a gun in someone else’s face
to stop them from stopping him,
we will all be saved from doom
and the Imams will shout songs of worship
and the streets of Delhi will dance for joy
and in the heartland
children will cling to the necks of their parents
who look up at the unthreatening sky
with tears in their eyes
and a prayer of thanks on their cornfed lips.
But this is all a lie.
Human fingers will just as soon reach out to
throttle another as
to join hands in communion
and the only apocalypse we need to fear
is the apocalypse in our own hearts.
You’ve driven me to distraction.
I was washing my hair while
thinking of you
and couldn’t remember
I’d put shampoo in
The me of now,
curated over the course
of many disappointments
to be indifferent and unmoved
and haughty as Estella
is revealed to be a suit
that hides the
I am on the inside.
I’m afraid that
sooner or later
you will expose me.
You’ll find the big zipper
in the back,
start to pull,
and before too long
the jig will be up.
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