Somewhere along the line you make a few meetings, pay a few bills, show up to work on time, and think you deserve more.

Somewhere along the line you can’t recognize the men crowded in wheelchairs and grocery carts below the overpass that gets you where you need to go.

Somewhere along the line their hungry faces became the heaps of crushed aluminum they wheel, profiles lost to some great psychotic stockpile.

Somewhere along the line you spare a dollar, a clean needle, a bottle on your way. Somewhere along the line you don’t want to go home.

Somewhere along the line you meet the dealer waiting at the corner with his reliable, small Ziplocs patterned with purple cartoon bulldogs.

He looks like wildfire in an orange dress and wig while gripping a rosary the color of gunpowder.

He rubs bead by secret bead with one hand while muttering devotions to every dollar reckoned in the other.

He reaches Fifth Mystery and releases the wares into the car window. Somewhere along the line you speed off with sickness and fear of cops.

Somewhere along the line the throbbing on your upper-arm wakes you under looming pink-spotted greenery.

Somewhere along the line you wonder how you even got here.

Somewhere along the line you notice your shadow still asleep beneath a bougainvillea left to propagate ferociously over the fence of a project building’s common yard.

Somewhere along the line your shadow reconciles back to you and you make for a bus home.

You have never seen anything burn with such embrace.

Photo by Dougtone

Photo by dreamyshade

Michael Martin

Michael Angel Martin is an MFA candidate in poetry at Florida International University. He lives in Miami, Florida.

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