We Live

where you can’t go to the mall
we live where you can’t go to the movies
we live where it’s not even safe enough
to take your kids to school
we live where army bases are fired upon
we live where recruitment centers and churches
are used for target practices
we live in stink and filth and can’t even feed our own
we live where strip malls get turned into scenes of massacres
we live with politicians who take kickbacks from gun lobbies
where the president shakes his head and says we’re facing a reckoning
but then goes and drops drone bombs on kids
we live where people get shot in mosques
where teenagers take their own lives every day
we live with god on our side but not in our hearts
we live where rich athletes can’t even escape the taste of blood
where even actors commit murder
we live with staggering rates of homicide
where we have 4,800 nuclear warheads at the ready
to kill the whole motherfucking world
we live with junkies and violence in mcdonald’s
we live with gun upon gun in wal-mart
where cuckolds take up arms instead of walking away
we live with heavenly exception
we live without guilt or remorse
where babies get caught in the crossfire of humid gang warfare
we live where you can’t go to college
without the fear of maybe getting shot
we live where cab drivers and civilians get plugged in their cars
where food courts and parks are for genocide
we live with mass murder in prison riot gore
we live where mothers kill fathers kill children
then take out half the neighborhood
where gas leaks explode and kill your friends
we live with road rage and vets sleeping on the corner
we live where people go into work and kill their bosses
where even the goddamned nursing homes aren’t safe
we live with uzis in law offices
and handguns in immigration detention centers
where border patrol guards carry machine guns for freedom
we live where people get murdered for the color of their skin
we live in the blood-soaked glare of the world
we live right here in america
where we don’t do a fucking thing about any of it.

John Grochalski is a published writer whose poetry and prose have appeared in several online and print publications. He is the author of three books of poetry, The Noose Doesn’t Get Any Looser After You Punch (Six Gallery Press, 2008), Glass City (Low Ghost Press, 2010), and Starting with the Last Name Grochalski (Coleridge Street Press, 2014). He is also the author of the novel, The Librarian (Six Gallery Press, 2013), and his chapbook In the Year of Everything Dying can be viewed via Camel Saloon’s Books on Blogs series. Read other articles by John.