J.J. Campbell

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Artwork by Gene McCormick

pretend that it all worked out in the end

the old lovers
are starting to
fade from my

i haven’t replaced
them with anything
just yet

nor am i thinking
i will be lucky
enough to do

i look at all the
bottles and the
shotgun in the

sometimes i’ll put
on some coltrane
and pretend that it
all worked out in
the end

knowing damn
well my death
will probably
be in this room

my hand clutching
whatever was lucky
enough to take me

how the real world actually works

these are the nights
where the walls start
to inch a little closer

the voices explain to
the demons that recess
only lasts until the
lights go out

the demons laugh
and hold a knife to
the neck of the voices
and calmly explain
how the real world
actually works

there are the nights
i start drinking gin
as a punishment
for not killing
myself sooner
in life

if i would have scratched
that itch thirty-five years
ago think of all the pain
i could have missed

the demons pour another
drink and tell me not
to worry

the end is a mysterious
ride into the unknown
and i should be proud

there’s no way i will
be a pretty corpse


J.J. Campbell (1976 - ?) is old enough to know where the bodies are buried. He's been widely published over the years, most recently at Synchronized Chaos, Horror Sleaze Trash, Live Nude Poems, Yellow Mama and The Rye Whiskey Review. You can find him waxing poetic most days on his mildly entertaining blog, evil delights. (https://evildelights.blogspot.com)