Gone Lawn
a journal of literature
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Gone Lawn 26
Autumn, 2017

New Works

Richard Weaver

Learning to Live with Global Warming Climate Change Idiot Landlords

Our landlady told us
with absoluteness in her voice
we needed no window screens,
not in the city, and certainly
not on the 9th floor, so high up,
actually the 13th if your count
the 4 levels of parking all above ground.
Her husband, unnamed and unimportant
for our purpose, being the man,
had declared to her - insects could not fly
that high. They were restricted by gravity
to annoy anyone on lower levels,
especially those who lived at ground
zero. A deaf and dumb seagull might mistake
an open window for a pregnant cloud,
but no insect could survived such heights,
deny gravity's will or the thinner air.
Unconvinced, we swatted mosquitoes
and chased after suicidal moths, armed
with the deadliest of aerosol cans,
even as albino roaches rappelled downward
from the Penthouse 5 floors above.
Living large, adapting and evolving, downtown.

Taking Orders

Turn around before it is too late.
Warn others. Expect delays.
Take the next left
assuming it has been left behind
and not previously taken.
Go forward 5 minutes or back 50 years.
Take the next turn.
The direction is yours alone. Choose.
Follow blindly in the sun's shadow.
Turn right again assuming
it is where you left it
and has not turned into a roundabout
for hitchhikers those noxious bastards.
Take the next turn.
Again, the choice is yours.
Follow in the sun's wobble
until the moon wakes
with a snort. Remember
to shield your eyes from its calm,
At the next intersection, slow down.
Look closely for parallel lines
dissecting infinity. Do not cross
at a deer crossing unless
advised otherwise. Or, if advised,
listen to the radio for a second opinion.
Turn right. Go 1/4 mile.
Crossover. Turn right again then wink.
Take the fork in the road
as a sign that a diner
will be your next stop
Turn the radio off.
Listen to the steady leakage
of background radiation.
Touch those dials.
Adjust the settings as needed.
Under no circumstances
merge left at this point.
Always remember to update
your GPS firmware.

Richard Weaver resides in Baltimore's Inner Harbor where he volunteers with the Maryland Book Bank, acts as the Archivist-at-large for a Jesuit college, and is a seasonal snowflake counter (unofficially). His publications include crazy horse, Black Warrior Review, North American Review, Conjunctions, The New England Review and the ubiquitous Elsewhere. 4 poems of his became the libretto for a symphony performed 4 times to date.