they chalked my
mature rating up to
word count, text recognition
bullshit, slapped the reverse
cuffs on my skinned wrists,
left me locked down
in the internet stockade
without a key, languishing
in my gentle obscurity, my
self-imposed anonymity, or
am I, was I, supposed to realize that
too late—? Hell, it's worked so
far for the mainframe locusts
popping all my shattered balloons,
I'm not even sure you can read this—
how does it translate from my head
to the keys to the screen to the save
to you, how do I know they don't alter
the meaning before it's too late—?
how do I know I'm even typing?
How do I know I'm not someone else?
Tom Pescatore grew up outside Philadelphia dreaming of the endless road ahead, carrying the idea of the fabled West in his heart. He maintains a poetry blog: amagicalmistake.blogspot.com. His work has been published in literary magazines both nationally and internationally but he'd rather have them carved on the Walt Whitman bridge or on the sidewalks of Philadelphia's old Skid Row.
Illustration by Meghan Irwin.