Thompson: Submachine Gun or Seafood House by Henry Cherry 


The cable to helium,

the lightning mustard,

corded in excelsior.

Wings spun of caramel,

fellow witnesses to the

descent, beyond the linens.

Disrupted in popped corks,

unstrung tennis racquets,

woods layered with pine needles.

The sweeping falter of arrhythmia

pursed in ruby painted

lips, a dank basement.

I have the purplish-blue color

from architectural prints,

from duplicating ditto machines

embroidered in a pillow case

with English alphabet letters

and Arabic numbers up to 10.

Big block memorials by the

golf course, shrouded in

plastic cups lined with citrus

flavored ideologies. Clacking

hooves, five-foot high fences

and wide brimmed hats.

I have a DeCarava print on the wall, and a

metal table underneath collecting

dust and fingerprints.

Hymnals open to the last

number of the epilogue

where God gets a little swinging.


Henry Cherry worked as a cowhand, a chef, and is now a journalist and photographer based in Los Angeles. He has been nominated for the Pushcart and the Orison Award. Featured as a reader at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles and at Litquake in San Francisco, his work has appeared in Los Angeles Review of Books, Cathexis Northwest Press, Australia’s Cordite Poetry Review, The Louisiana Review, and the recent pandemic collection, Hello Goodbye Apocalypse.