brains folding over in the heartland of america

he only likes obama
because he's black -
i have reasons
for my beliefs -
to back them up,
says my coworker.

because one of our
black coworkers
is for obama
but doesn't know
shit about him
or the issues.

kind of like
your views on
homosexual marriage -
they're based on
from the bible
i ask
setting him up for
intellectual edification
because the clock says
and some people are born for
mercy killings.

yes yes
god's word,
he says
head snapping
crisp at the neck
in confirmation.

you do realize
many people
myself included
consider the bible
thin fiction -
a c-list
for lemmings,
i say
chewing my pen
to keep from

poor guy's hands
are trembling.

i feel kinda bad

i think his dad died
of a heart attack.

but i could be wrong
perhaps logic
and the quantifiable
are overrated mirages,
i say
taking my foot
off the gas
and changing the subject
to the upcoming
college football game
between iowa
and iowa state.


Justin Hyde
Justin Hyde lives in Iowa where he works as a correctional officer.