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Bree, a poem by Tony Brewer


She openly admits she is codependent
standing on my porch in the dark
after Ray ran off with her clothes

A frantic knock at my screen
a plea for my wi-fi
her phone dying
She had 2-3 years left
as long as she stayed clean
& she did through Christ
teaching her kids it's worse
if you don't believe & it's real
than if you believe
& it is

Eaten up by bugs
that don't bother me
she needs a ride
Ray says he’s lost
Her thumbs batter the screen
What started as compassion
turns to OK get off my porch
her bundle of nerves
wadded up spare underwear
in a big bag full
of wrong chargers

But I don't crack
When she is calm she's thinking
of all she gave up to stay
for what felt like love
& it is

Two spirits fighting
to stay & to leave
rattling off the story
like a grocery list

Ray is waiting at the Exxon
nods when I pull up
She is jabbering furious
about what his fucking problem is

as her door opens
Dude looks tired worn out beat
by responsibility I claimed
for an hour of texting on my porch
I gladly turn over to him
& pull away

Tony Brewer is a poet and audio artist from Bloomington, Indiana. He co-produces the Writers Guild Spoken Word Series and the Urban Deer Performance Series. His books include Hot Type Cold Read, Pity for Sale, and Fragile Batteries. Tony has been offering Poetry On Demand at coffeehouses, museums, cemeteries, churches, bars, and art and music festivals for over a decade, and he is a frequent collaborator with experimental music & field recording ensemble ORTET. More at Brewer