Issue Thirty-Five - Winter 2020

“When Did You Decide Not to Give Up?”

By Ace Boggess

[question asked by Nadia Ibrashi]

let each day decide what’s best for a broken beast

like me, like anyone shackled to one existential crisis

or another. why choose breath when the murderer

wraps his meaty garrote around your throat?

could cease, sleep, discharge your sentence.

if today has other plans—a walk in the rain

beneath arc lamps sparked like hazy stars,

a laugh, a kiss, a few kind words from strangers—

I permit these tour guides to lead me through the present,

won’t invoke them or ask the route, preferring surrender

to the next armed struggle with police.

where the squad car takes me, I will find release.

Copyright 2020 Boggess