• Lammergeier Staff

Dispatches | Brendan Joyce


bought the wrong kinda batteries,

drank a monster energy drink in Missouri


I was at Stonewall

the day you died


I’m sorry I invented the weather


We split in the shifting light of sodium street lamps.

Your kindness was a debt accruing.


The corpse in the casket isn’t asked

to work their own funeral but restaurant

workers sure are. I worked our funeral in a chef's coat

with a spaghetti sauce splotch on my

breast pocket. A guest joked about a murder, a butcher.


Haven’t worked in eighteen months

the ruling class still slurps surplus

value straight out of my sternum as I sleep


What were we supposed to do with the cicada

in the kitchen sink, dead, staring at the ceiling

begging for you to come? I didn’t bury it in the

backyard, that seemed too private for someone

with such a public life, deserved burial in song

& rhythm, for others to hear. But that carcass is silent.


I don’t want to work. I also do not want to

want to work. I also can not work. I also

work all day. I also do not work.


mine is not an approachable reality


it does not ask you to enter


you simply do


I’m sorry, I’m a poet, I love a list.

I’m sorry I’m a poet, I love a list.

I’m sorry, I’m a poet, I love; a list.





Brendan Joyce is a student at Cleveland State, co-organizer of Grieveland Poetry Press and the author of Love & Solidarity and Character Limit. His poems have appeared in Protean Magazine, the Johannesburg Review of Books, the Brooklyn Rail, Prolit, Pandemic Publications and Flypaper Lit.

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