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the grand tour by Angelina Martin

the cankerous grackles in the parking lots

swarming in synchronicity like a biblical plague

they don’t scare easy no matter

how mean you make your face

instead they congregate right in your path

and together they nibble

a cigarette butt like it’s caviar

the air in summer, thick and important

sliding down your only throat

taking its precious time

choking you with tenderness

the melodramatic katydids

making their point known

I can drive anywhere I want

except down that street and that one

and that neighborhood but only in the fall

ghosts of craigslist roommates, everywhere I haunt

I’ve always yearned for roots and now

I spend my sordid days tripping over them

there’s not much left to see, I’m afraid

the dive bars with the surveilling cats

who belong to no one in particular

dense stickered doors swing wide open

welcoming you home

letting the good biting AC out

they like just about everyone here

just don’t dare tell them

where you’re from





Angelina Martin is a writer, comedian, and waitress who lives in Austin, Texas. Her work has previously been published in Sea Foam Mag, Be About It Press, and Inconnu Mag as well as in the book Anthology: The Ojai Playwrights Conference Youth Workshop 2006-2016. Her stand up and poetry both often touch on themes of loneliness, sexuality, and reckoning desire with trauma. Most days, you can either find her oversharing on Twitter under her government name (@AngelinaJMartin) or taking a nap next to various bodies of water.

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