Ken Kakareka


I have a pain
in my mid-section –
possibly my liver.
Cirrhosis got Kerouac
and the 12-gauge
got Hemingway
before Cirrhosis
The ways out
for writers
are bleak
in most cases.
I should probably
put down
the bottle
the same way
we need to
put down
this narrative
about writers
killing themselves,
It’s a tired,
old narrative
and the people
looking in
from the outside
don’t understand
that it hasn’t
been written
by writers
It’s been perpetuated
by pop-culture vultures
who need something
to feed off of.
Fate can be
a cruel bitch
who always gets
her way
and writers succumb
to her lure
which keeps
the narrative
when it’s
iconic writers
we should’ve kept
alive instead. 


I went
into Wells Fargo
in downtown Anaheim
to get quarters
for laundry.
It’s the biggest
pain in my ass
besides rats,
and termites.
The charm
of living
in an old apt.
There were several
homeless people
in line –
one with swollen,
purple hands
like potatoes,
and another
with a dirty,
Duck Dynasty-type
All of them
hundreds of dollars.
I watched the one
with the dirty beard
hobble into
a parking garage
next to the bank
and surrender
his envelope
of cash
to a drug dealer,
whom didn’t look
as banged up
as the homeless man.
He drove away
in a Corolla
that needed
new tires.
I wondered if
he was taking
the cash
to buy a set,
but probably not.
We tend to neglect
for pleasures
and put our money
where it
fills us.


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