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‘Cameras Steal Souls’ and other poems by Ron Riekki

By: Ron Riekki

Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

Cameras Steal Souls

We photograph each other
until we smell.

There is a sledgehammer
ghost in the background.

She screams
for us to put away the cameras

and kill the photos
and smash the graphs

to replace them
with oaks and grass.

All the Guns are Satan’s Tongues

I ask the class
if Jesus

would own a gun
and a woman

in the front
row says, “Jesus wouldn’t

need a gun”
and a kid in

the back yells,
“And we don’t need Jesus.”

The Women Who Have Broken Up With Me Are Still in My Chest

I sink
in my skin;

the axes
of my exes



I Ask Her to Marry Me and She Says No

She tells me my eyes
look like lakes,

like frozen lakes
with a little boy

under the ice.

The Successful Writers Hold Their Life Preservers Tight

watching the drowning

we yell
out, Help! Help!

and they yell back,
“That doesn’t even rhyme.”

And another on the shore of the Visitor Writers Series
that has been renamed the Nepotic Writers Series

that has been renamed the Tenured-Who-Don’t-Even-Need-the-Money Writers Series
that has been renamed the Absolutely-No-Indigenous-Included Writers Series

yells, “Actually, it’s identical rhyme”
as Emily Dickinson’s corpse floats next to me.


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