Country Music
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Tyler Gobble



Nuclear family

Fucking people was fun like changing hats
when I was bent-double with growing pains
but then I met you, learning your head
holds images like dying horses and church slumber parties.
Before I left, your father shook my shoulder
and the way my innards rattled worried him a little bit.
The way he googled me jumbled my nerves too:
I know you need proof to lock up your daughter,
but man, the Internet's got some crazy shit,
how it sags and grows thin, our cellophane lives,
but I promise, I am 100% goodnesschangedpromise.
I'm watching T.V., recovering from the hiccup
of interrupting your family discussion about
the value of praying the old-fashioned way
with my theory that the stars are projectors.
All the cotton shirts turned yellow with
confusion, heads tilted like almost-blown-over barns.
Wonder what they'd say if you told them,
I quit my job at the cheese puff factory to write
poems about their wonky religion?
Wonder what shape their heads would take
if they knew I've been drinkin' drinkin' drinkin'
with the money they sent in the card
ending a cursive God Bless You.
I'll admit to you: nothing scares me more than being alone.
But still I'm a fool for everyone, my family tree
a bunch of friends with bottle-handling dads and slutty sisters.
Don't tell them my branches are too slight for the heft
of their Sunday dinners and leather-bound Bibles.
Rest assured darling, that squiggle between you and I
when we sleep is one of the better kinds of space.
So, if you want me to say Grace, I'm afraid
you'll be disappointed, but if you want honesty,
HELL YEAH, I came clean just now, look up!