Poetry: Now by Marc Darnell

Photo by Jessica Lynn Dotson

Hug your son and tell him you love him,
or do something with him, anything—
stop tinkering with your crap in the garage.

That overgrown toolshed isn’t an homage
to the greasy god of car part hoarding.
Hug your son and tell him you love him.

In a few more years he won’t be driven
to sleep in the house of a widower drinking.
Stop tinkering with your crap. In the garage

the yellowed calendar girls know your age—
you can’t sit on the beach with them mingling,
so hug your son. Tell him you love him

before your headlights are cracked and dim,
while he’s in a far place, his heart sinking,
and you’re still tinkering in the garage

as you gasp with acid reflux and wage
war with esophageal cancer, and start thinking
it’s too late to find him and tell him you love him
before they bury you under your crap in the garage.

Marc Darnell is a custodian and online tutor in Omaha, NE, and has also been a phlebotomist, hotel supervisor, busboy, editorial assistant, farmhand, devout recluse, and incurable brooder. He received his MFA from the University of Iowa, and has published poems in The Lyric, Rue Scribe, Verse, Skidrow Penthouse, Shot Glass Journal, The HyperTexts, Candelabrum, The Road Not Taken, Aries, Ship of Fools, Open Minds Quarterly, The Fib Review, Verse-Virtual, Blue Unicorn, Ragazine, The Literary Nest, and The Pangolin Review, among others.

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