July 3-9, 2000: Bill Trudo and Debrah Kayla Sterling


week of July 3-9, 2000

Bill Trudo and Debrah Kayla Sterling

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Bill Trudo

Bio (auto)

I live in the Chicago, Illinois area, and my work has appeared on-line at Niederngasse, Poetry Super Highway, Prairie Poetry, and Apples & Oranges, Oranges & Apples.

The following work is Copyright © 2000, and owned by Bill Trudo and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsover without written permission from the author.

Pricing Surfaces

Never say more than what the weather’s like
or the rumors of a hot baseball trade What thoughts envelop the road just outside
the store windows should never concern you The wheels push onward, busy during rush,
and then spotty like the weakest drizzle
Never remember the customers’ names The order of letters equals caring,
and you don’t want to know the fears hiding
anxiously behind the smiling faces Don’t pry; let them smile, then maybe you can
Never warm to the pain of a lost job,
a dead-end job, the year-long death of friends Anyone can talk about anything,
easier for you to nod than listen
Now is night and beams glow to peer ahead
and you watch Sometimes the turn signals flash
to another’s need in seeing bright eyes
Never entangle the present with work You accept the twenties and give back change
Never say love or hatred in passing.

Major Tom

“and the stars look very different today”
.David Bowie, “Space Oddity”

.for Kurt Cobain

Entranced–the guitar cord stretches
from you Cones shudder Colors sway from blonde to red
to black hair and purple patches
weaving shades of flannel
Blue jeans jump lost
to the shadow away from stagelights Sweat drips What would
your stomach churn then?
The billions distant and you
floating among a thousand
camera flashes–posters
There is a price to explore,
to untether the stench
of gyrating young bodies
searching for any melody
to toss the skin and offer sense And yours–the child of backwoods
and trailer homes and drunks
Why would it matter?
You couldn’t answer All the faces blotched with half-recognition,
they watched not you,
instead the thin, weightless line–
what a dream waiting for the sun to rise
from behind the world’s edge.

a Town, an Old Man, and a Woman

“She must have married John
for the money”
the town said No,
she married him for his strong, nimble hands “He must have married Sue
for her young, good looks”
the town said Perhaps
One time an officer caught
the two of them in the alley
pressed between the dumpster
and John’s restaurant The officer said nothing and watched
John and Sue didn’t notice, so wildly
they were entangled.

Riverport, Illinois

Everyone has forgotten the town,
even the ones who swallow the dust
and scratch across the empty lots
Aunt Betty stares aimlessly at the barges Her husband John fumbles with his fork
Who wants to walk a downtown
now past half-boarded and paint-chipped?
It makes the lives feel small,
another slip away from the railroad tracks
Little George throws rocks at the trains
and dreams of Kentucky trees thicker than blood At night, his friend Josh spray-paints the courthouse red
The newspaper headlines “Vandal”.

Completely Fantastic

I know a man named Bob
who complains that his father
plays rock and roll on the stereo
loud, so loud that Bob
can’t study at home during the day Funny, Bob always smiles about it
His father, eighty-two years old,
plays rock and roll I wonder
what music he plays Does he waltz to Barry Manilow,
or mosh to Suicidal Tendencies?
What does an eighty-two year old
rock and roller listen to?

“White Rabbit”?
“Painted Black”?
Does he chuckle to “Truckin”,
“Life in the Fast Lane”?
Does he reflect on “Time”?
Maybe he bops, listening
to “Rock Around the Clock”,
the “Monster Mash” Maybe
he digs U2 and The Clash “Smells Like Teen Spirit” could be
spinning on his turntable now His hair could be flailing His head could be banging Slayer could be playing
at a volume near ten
Funny, Bob always smiles about it When I see that smile, I picture
his father, an eighty-two year old man,
hand held high, lighter ablaze,
screaming the chorus “Rock of Ages”
is completely fantastic:
Bob’s father still rolling.

Debrah Kayla Sterling

Bio (auto)

Debrah Kayla Sterling: Currently residing in the city of Greensboro–(by day), holds occupation as a counselor/advisor, (and by soft light of evening), aspires to become the William Adolphe Bouguereau of the printed page Her poetry has been included in several small edition poetry collections, as well as displayed at: FZQ, Mark Everett’s– ‘(this)’, Moondance, The Poet’s Canvas, Poetry Tonight, Poetfest, Dove Cottage, The writing Forum, and Poets Of The Heart (as a featured poet) Her poem, ‘Impressions’, was chosen by Burrell Inc as the dedication for their publication titled ‘Award Winning Portraits Of Children’ She has also been awarded writing honors by various publications and in several writing competitions
The following work is Copyright © 2000, and owned by Debrah Kayla Sterling and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsover without written permission from the author.

Office Space

Her hair looks like
a tangle of shoelaces frayed and worn,
having been sloshed
through mud;
dangling over eyes
that seem to say–
“does anyone miss me?”

Eyes that survey
this office space the real estate of the streets,
where she “works”
and pretends to live,
with all the other
crack pipe warriors–
wasted, twisted,
and broken down soldiers
Walking dirty fingers
across her lips,
thinking of men
she once did attract–
so well dressed, well paid and very well equipped
to show her a good time
Now, all she can harvest
are the sewer low bums–
down and out on their luck,
smelling just as badly
as she does
dissolved and diluted
in the dope jar of her head,
by the white powder sniffed
and the little pipe lit,
as she’s slipped
from upper-class sheets
into a four alarm fire her pink party dress
up in smoke
Dazed and slumped
she sits clawing
at unshaven legs–
until spying a hunter
offering relief
in a small plastic bag then pushes herself up
onto unsteady feet
to follow
Around the corner
they disappear,
his tongue protruding
through a broken tooth smile;
she staggers along
prepared to negotiate
the trade of a lay
for enough cocaine
to chase her troubles
but as she reaches
to take his medication,
he snatches her wrist
slapping her hard
against ragged bricks eager to give her
a different kind of hit.


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