Three Poems ~ poetry by Marc Darnell

Maternal Instinct

Swearing is brave.
That’s just my opinion.
My mother didn’t like it.

She didn’t like shit!
or other filth Dad passed on.
It would have been brave

of her to one day leave
the kitchen and turn
to say if you don’t like it

don’t eat it, damn it!
You fuckin’ gluttons–
you cook it.  Be brave

when things boil, save
leftovers for me.  I’ll be on
the town, so suck it.

But she’d never say that,
and we did act like such morons.
Not swearing, she was still brave,
being a mom and trying to like it.


obituary for a credit card

they called you Visa
but I called you Lover

16-digit magic man
you fed me when
your dirty brother
debit card
deserted me

someone stole your
heart abused you down
to negative 399 dollars

I went years without you
wheezing powerless
but you came back to me
a polyvinyl boomerang
with me now
my rectangular amour

but I give pieces of you
away till you are
near zero but still I keep
you at my butt cheek
pressed and arched
when I squat
desperately for pennies

I extract you
from my wallet
with your pulsing
hologram hawk your
plasticity and potential
so stoic erect
so plumped to take
my wishful charge

then you expired–
a crib death in my wallet
and the stork never brought
your offspring


Austere And Lonely Offices*

Happiness is fleeting, they had a meeting.
This time they opened the blinds but locked the door,
decisions not worth writing, reading or repeating.

Was a designated hitter not defeating?
In there they always tamper with the score,
so happiness is fleeting.  They had a meeting

that you’re the sorry sheep–bled, still bleating.
They’re using cryptic handshakes, making sure
it’s secret–all that writing, reading and repeating.

Stay in your receptacle, pleading
that no one leave his niche, yet you crave more
of happiness–fleeting, remember?  The meeting?

The CEO is giggling, what’s he eating?
He’s never looked this glad and full before.
You wonder if he’s writing, reading or repeating

who is worth deleting–the weak competing
for cubicles, eventually shown the door
to happiness that’s fleeting, said the meeting,
where life is not worth writing, reading or repeating.

*(love’s austere and lonely offices–Robert Hayden, “Those Winter Days”)

Marc Darnell is a facilities tech and online tutor in Omaha NE, and has also been a phlebotomist, hotel supervisor, busboy, editorial assistant, farmhand, devout recluse, and incurable brooder — leading to near auto collisions. He received his MFA from the University of Iowa, and has published poems in The Lyric, Eclectic Muse, Skidrow Penthouse, Shot Glass Journal, The HyperTexts, Candelabrum, Quantum Leap, Aries, Ship of Fools, Open Minds Quarterly, The Fib Review, Verse-Virtual, Blue Unicorn, and The Pangolin Review, among others.

Show Marc a little love via PayPal at medarnell65(at)gmail(dot)com.