Illustration by Stacy Reece
Illustration by Stacy Reece

A Monster Truck Passes the Poetry Reading

Let’s not get so cultured we’re blind, folks.

And I have to laugh. One of my people—
unmuffled, extreme—disrupts the depth
of the artist’s sad words, and the patio
patrons wear their disgust and disdain
at such interruption, irreverence.
His back window littered with gun
stickers galore, his dual antennas
thrown back by wind, whispered insults
spread like exhaust: Fascist   redneck   illiterate
hick from people who, moments before,
applauded stanzas condemning stereotypes.
They sip their pink and yellow drinks,
wait for the signing so they can apologize
to the writer for our area’s lack of culture.
I listen to distance, smell lingering diesel,
wonder how many hours he spent perfecting his craft.

Author Profile

John Davis Jr. is an eighth-generation Floridian who teaches English and holds an MFA from University of Tampa. His latest book, The Places That Hold (Eastover Press, 2021), received the bronze medal for poetry in the Florida Book Awards. 

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