Note: They say confession is good for the soul, which may be why everybody is copping a plea in the Mueller investigation. But why should Flynn and Cohen and Manafort have all the fun? Here’s my plea agreement along with two poems overheard from this strange life.
I Reach a Plea Deal with Robert Mueller
I plead guilty to watching football when I know
it causes brain damage
and the NFL’s triumphal linking to the military
makes my stomach turn. I plead guilty
to reading stories on ESPN when I should be writing,
when I should be trying to heal the ills of the world.
I plead guilty to having three bathrooms in my house
for two people (though that is mitigated a little
because all three are used by people of all genders).
I plead guilty for snitching peanuts in the middle of the day.
I plead guilty for watching Game of Thrones.
When I admit reading all the books, Mueller sighs
and shakes his head. What depravity he has seen in his long career!
I plead guilty for posting my poetry publications on Facebook
and counting up the likes the way a miser would let gold coins
spill across his hands.
I plead guilty to watching my wife while she sleeps.
I plead guilty for how lazy I am,
how much I like to sit quietly and read,
while the world suffers and lurches toward destruction.
I plead to all my minor sins and crimes. I will do my time,
and he will never know the deepest secrets hidden in my memory vault.
And neither will you.
At the Doctor’s Office
He says we treat the cancer
if you’re under seventy, but
if you’re over, we leave it alone.
It’s usually slow growing, so
chances are you’ll die
of something else,
and I’m laughing and he
laughs, no, no he says, that
didn’t sound right.
How old were your parents
when they died?
A lot older than I’ll ever be,
I say, my dad was eighty-seven,
my mother ninety-nine.
Oh, well then, he says.
Why do you say you won’t live as long?
And I’m thinking you can’t make this stuff up,
with your pants down around your knees.
We’re talking at the kitchen table.
It’s too hot out there to work
without a break, so we’re cooling
off a bit, drinking beer.
He’s still got some grass in his hair,
and a smudge across his brow,
so I hand him a towel.
He wipes his face. “Yeah,” he says,
as if he’s in the middle of a story,
“Katie, my dog got real sick,
and the vet couldn’t do nothing
so I had to shoot her.
Took my Glock and half carried her
back to the yard, but I was crying
so hard I couldn’t shoot straight,
and I missed the first time.
Man, she whined and yelped
and kinda shook, but she couldn’t
run no more, the pain was that bad,
so I said ‘Marlon, you do this right,’
and I shot her through the head.
Hated to, you know?
Hardest damn thing I ever done.”
© 2018 Steve Klepetar
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