At dusk the old men nest on street corners
in prayer; a new pair of clay knees cracking
the air every few minutes. Their wives watch them
through the hours with glass eyes—the roads too
are made of glass, coupled with the fires beneath
the streets wear an eerie glow.

There is a cobbler with goldfish for teeth
who sows scales to the feet of children—
He wears a bracelet of thimbles around his wrist
and a tape measure noosed around his neck.

The butcher slaughters with broken pieces of glass—
the blood from his hands mix with that of the rank
animals’. While the scars on his skin move gently
across his chest as if looking for a place to rest.

Every night, when the sun goes down,
the old men migrate to the pub—their bellies
limp with hunger and their knees black as stove tops.
The barkeep serves drinks in jagged edged mugs—these old fools
cut their lips and bleed into their beer.

When the sun comes up
they will scream at the gods
and curse the blinding pain crawling through their eyes
into the backs of their heads.

Ian Khadan moved to the United States with his elder brother and parents. He has since graduated from Rutgers
University in English. Ian's poetry has been featured on Indiefeed's performance poetry podcast and printed in a handful of local
collaborative anthologies with other poets from the New Jersey poetry scene to raise money for homeless shelters, awareness for art,
and other social issues.


Copyright 2009