Leveler Poetry Journal
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West Virginia


Whenever a woman leaves our state forever,

a mine entrance explodes beside a riverbed.

Coal & Kroger: our only serious employers.


Every screen door needs lithium grease.

Blood platelets & extended families stream

to the disaster area – macadam so saturated,


Bill sees a shortfin mako shark

ceramic figurine that used to be Mary’s mailbox.

Don’t tell Mary.


The last correspondence Mary needs is a final-

notice bill.  Mary knows what she owes.

Bill carries a cooler upon his shoulder & it’s not filled


with organ donation.  Mary reveals to Bill the damaging

blast deposits us all closer to the Atlantic ocean,

mineral slabs we scaled as kids are now sandy beach.


Holy shit, is that a Boy Scout manning an Archimedean

Screw? Mary & Bill comment on the perversive nature

of displacing fluids with a double or a triple


helical surface shaft pump.  Don’t tell Mary or Bill

we’re chattel in the Hanging

Gardens of Babylon.

Jeffrey Hecker