Two Poems by Phil Estes
The stripmall hibachi and the first ring of hell—the ghosts of the people pre-christ—are the same. Ain’t no fret in being before, or after. He cuts the raw meat and the onions. That sizzle is just our mouths, he’s trying his best with what’s left. What a nice thing. We are all here.
The Holy District’s executioner weeps over the body of one of us. He emotes so elegantly, what with the blood on his cloak and his small wet eyes, you can’t believe him. “Where’s the natural talent?” They are behind a gate, but we keep saying we’re beyond; but not a good beyond, but their meaning. Something, something salvation. “Once more, bros, with feeling.”
Phil Estes’ work includes the chapbook Slowjams (forthcoming, Living Arts Press) and the collection High Life (forthcoming, Horse Less). Poems are forthcoming, or recently appeared in Action Yes, Diagram, and Lungfull! He teaches writing at Louisiana Tech University.