Dear Corporation(Precarious College Town Halloween, 2018 Mix),
I was about to smash my hand
through the shatterproof glass
of another disheveled college town halloween,
but then this girl walked past in a self-made
mustard bottle costume, scissor-shredded stockings,
and stilettos she wobbled in like a newborn giraffe.
And I’m not sure if it was that I couldn’t tell
where the eyeholes were, or couldn’t tell
how she was steering, or my logistical confusion
about how she could possibly deal with the bulk all night,
how she’d sip from her flask or bong a beer or use the restroom,
that melted the irrational judgment from me,
but thank god she walked by because I needed
so desperately to be melted.
I’m afraid sometimes that my default setting
is asshole, and in my inability to escape it, I keep flinging
my tedious, uninteresting judgments at everyone.
So I want to take this opportunity to apologize,
and if you are out on the streets this weekend,
pretending to be something other than yourself
or, perhaps, strategically revealing your true self for the first time,
please be safe, try to stick to one kind of alcohol, smile politely
at police officers and their skittery horses
and remind yourself that we are all, even if we don’t know it,
in some way, wearing blinders.
Avoid the rolling blackouts of aggressive drunks,
the roving fogs of pepper spray and raving bands
of terrible music and terrible love.
Avoid shattered glass and people dressed as The Joker from Suicide Squad
or The Dark Knight (though hug anyone dressed as Jack Nicholson’s 1989 version of the same), and people dressed as the Suicide Squad version of Harley Quinn (though, again, smile at and compliment profusely anyone wearing the Harley Quinn costume from Batman: The Animated Series).
If you need me, I’ll be at home
listening to Angel Olsen or The Cure’s “Disintegration,”
drinking Red Stripes and Trader Joe’s scotch, reading
Signs Preceding the End of the World by Yuri Herrera
and working on The Moonshiner’s Apprentice/St. Alice.
Please, do not hesitate to call if you need a ride
or a hand up or a space heater or a blanket
or band-aids and disinfectant or stitches or a bowl
of homemade chicken soup with avocado
and some crushed-up tortilla chips and a little sour cream and Valentina.
Or if you need to be talked down or talked awake
or to be listened to sincerely as you unload
about the world’s unloading the world
upon your shoulders.
Please, remember, no matter what, we’re here for you
and we love you and please, please be safe.
You are the loveliest of splitfoot demons
clopping up parks from the pavement
of our bloodied, blackout city.