2 Poems by Ross Vassilev

animal kingdom

so many strange things
like that one time in a Kroger parking lot--
a young man walked up to me
and asked if he could pray for me
he said that God told him to pray
for the first man he sees walking with a limp
(I walk with a limp)
I said sure
so he put his hand on my shoulder
and sent a prayer on my behalf to Jesus
when he finished
he beamed with evangelical ecstasy
I said thanks
he said something I don't recall
and walked away.
so many strange things--
I was watching football one Sunday
the second game of the day
when I felt something weird in me
and wondered what it was
then suddenly it hit me:
every second that I watched that game
I was getting dumber
both in mind and in spirit
so I turned off the TV
and stopped watching crap of any kind
soon thereafter.
when I think of all the crap TV I used to watch
when I was a kid
(my poor brain!) hour after hour
it's a wonder I can think at all.
so many strange things--
my insane family
the white trash and their kids
and their dogs--
so many things
I'll never understand
and I've given up on trying.


it's a funny world we live in
where the people who slaughtered the Indians
and penned them up in reservations
keep talking about freedom.

I guess you need black slaves to build democracy
you need nuclear bombs too
and the biggest prison complex
the world has ever seen.

do these people
really believe their own bullshit?

here's some NO-bullshit:
I didn't mind working 40 hrs. a week--
what I did mind was sweating my ass off
for minimum wage till my feet hurt
in conditions that were more slavery than freedom
and all the union could say was sorry.

if zombies are the walking dead
then I certainly was one for a few years
till my luck kicked in for once
and I finally got a chance to work at
becoming a human being.

but when my luck runs out
(and I know that some day it will)
I'll be back in the warehouses
the supermarkets and dim factories
(if there's any factories left in America)
busting ass and bitching
and stinking of sweat
cuz when it comes to working for shit-money
I just don't feel like showering some days.