Thursday Nov 26

Sukach-Poetry Mike Sukach's fiction and poetry appears or is forthcoming in a number of venues to include The Sow’s Ear Poetry Review, The Hamilton Stone Review, Ontologica, theNewerYork, Cellpoems, Poetry Northeast, The Blast Furnace, and The Citron Review.


Family Photo


If we extrapolate a guess, those are gills
or soft abrasions just below my ears.
Although I appear happy enough, the shock
of the star-white flash must have startled
and pinned open those blood-red wild eyes.
But there I seem to be, the impression of a life
in a goose down elephant grey winter coat
with homemade mittens stitched to my sleeves.
More like a smirch of light that shouldn’t exist,
captured escaping, frozen in motion, an essence.
Eventually, we outgrow those disfigurements;
except, in this photo I’m disfigured and seated
in a hospital room on top of a full-body cast
plastered up to hold my father together
after he drunk-crashed mother’s third car.
That’s her blur standing on the other side
with her head cut off and one hand resting
where my father’s twice-broken knee
should be. We were “insolvent” back then.
Those are my used bowling shoes criss-
crossed as if my feet played by themselves.
Disfigured bodies do that kind of thing.
The time father drove us into the river
My mouth opened, but no howl came out.
My fingers clutched, but no fear came out.
In the police photo, I’m dog paddling
toward the raft or the arms or the rope.
It’s hard to tell what I’m swimming for.
Only dumb luck I’m not a fish, yet.