Literary Yard

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“There was a guy in divinity school” and other poems by Ron Riekki

By: Ron Riekki

There was a guy in divinity school

so into Jesus Christ
that he kind of made me
not believe in God
any time
I was around him.

My neighbors scream the F-word

at each other
just about every other day.
I punched the window
because it was driving me so crazy,
the glass everywhere—
on the floor,
in the plants,
little pieces
deep in my feet.

I told my counselor.
My counselor said,
It’s how they love each other.

I told her
my punching the window
is how I love the window.

I looked down
and saw a little piece of glass
on my shoe.


On Friday, I posted that I hate Quentin Tarantino’s inglorious basterds

and someone wrote back,
“Then we can’t be friends.”

I looked at the name.
I had no idea who he was.

We’d never met.
This was the first time
he’d ever liked or shared or reacted
to anything I’ve ever written.

Then I guess we’re not friends,
I said to my apartment wall.

The apartment wall
didn’t like or share or react
to what I said.

I started thinking
about why I hate that movie so much.
Maybe it’s the spelling.


I did a Zen Buddhism Meditation Thing Once and the Whole Time

my knees hurt.
Really bad.
I’d try to think of other things,
but sitting like that
all I could think about
was my knees.
It was like a deep revelation:
God, does this shit hurt your knees!


They make a lot of horror films about Valentine’s Day

I bet whoever invented Valentine’s Day
must be pissed off about that.
I think it must make him so mad
that he’d almost want to murder someone.


In this poem, you fall in love with me

I should apologize.
You didn’t mean to fall in love with me,
but there was something about the words.

And the difficulty is your five states away
and married
or not married.
It doesn’t matter.
You kind of want to kiss me.
But instead you just kiss the air.

There you go again,
you just kissed the air.
You keep doing it.
Over and over.
Like some kind of spell or something.


 Ron Riekki’s books include U.P. (Ghost Road Press), Posttraumatic (Hoot ‘n’ Waddle), and My Ancestors are Reindeer Herders and I Am Melting in Extinction (Loyola University Maryland’s Apprentice House Press).  Riekki co-edited Undocumented (Michigan State University Press) and The Many Lives of The Evil Dead(McFarland), and edited And Here (MSU Press), Here(MSU Press, Independent Publisher Book Award), andThe Way North (Wayne State University Press, Michigan Notable Book).

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