Poetry by KG Newman

We Drink A Lot and Live Very Little

This is some moment, isn’t it?
Someone’s birth or last breath,
this moment, right now is an idyllically lonesome moment.
Girl from the gym, are you aware
of how often you’ll smile
if you’d just excuse this poor forum for my advance
and accept my dinner invitation?
All my friends are wistful and high.
They’re playing catch now in their raggedy high school jerseys
still trying to compensate
for plays they didn’t make.
Except my friend Johnny who doesn’t play
and instead studies classic cinema
and large bottles of vodka— Johnny,
I need you to know
you are my favorite critic
in this entertainment section that is life.
Not any life but this life, which we are quite familiar with
despite our frequent attempts to escape it.
Yes, another blistering summer’s on the doorstep
and in this, the most lonesome moment,
cacti are overwatered and rotting
like the somber Indian gulping from his flask
outside his mobile home on the reservation.
Why should he listen to the sun god that says
His rays are aplenty, there’s no reason to be so alone at so young?
It’s a hell of a moment, some moment
among many moments we go through the motions in.
I’ll never accept the reality
of the neon lights turned on every night,
and the inebriation that comes so easily
and our only regret being the moment in the morning
when the body lets it go.
We drink a lot and live very little.
That’s what must be done.

We Hang Out All The Time

My teammates have vanished. I used to have many.
One took his life and I didn’t see it coming. Another
became a famous musician. Another one, who for a long while
I suspected to be gay, married the first woman
who agreed to be his girlfriend.

We used to know each other better than brothers,
we were Eskimo brothers: drunk and high, dipping Grizz,
fist-pounding, ass-slapping in the least lascivious manner
possible. Egos simultaneously inflated in victory, bond
consolidated in defeat. Rank scent of practice pennies
never washed. Water bottles passed along after sprints,
save a squirt for the guy at the end of the line. Cursing,
making momma jokes, calling one another vile names
as displays of affection. Now we never call, barely talk,
most I haven’t seen since that last playoff loss.

But recollections of our glory together, fellas,
have not faded from my mind. My throat still burns
from handles you made me pull. My back
still feels the sting from locker room five-stars.
Other details—exact plays, signs, formations—
I seem to have misplaced. The present is
the electricity bill which has been increasing
in recent sleepless months, while the past avalanches
down an isolated mountain on the fringe of our hometown.

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About KG Newman

KG Newman is currently the sports editor at the Alamogordo Daily News in Alamogordo, New Mexico. A Denver native and graduate of Arizona State University, he’s a baseball junkie, part-time rapper, and full-time lover of women in sun dresses. He has been published in numerous literary journals, including Curbside Splendor, Lines+Stars, Blue Lake Review, and Canyon Voices.