Monday, July 16, 2012

Trevor Nelson


A decrepit man, a magician’s assistant
in an orange jumpsuit, appears from a pile
of sweat stained sheets on the bottom bunk.
Pinching his nostrils, he blasts a ball
of mucus from the cannula in his neck
into a green trashcan by the cell door. I squint
trying to read him from across the room.
In stuttering fluorescent light, his hair
looks like crumpled newspapers.

He plugs the crater in his throat and croaks
a question to the room. It goes unanswered.
Everyone here knows he's famous
for making things disappear: mostly his appendages
into his daughter and her daughter. The blond
kid, whose face is freckled with acne,
who tried to punch an inmate
through the bars of a cell while we passed out
lunch trays, says, Somebody should stuff a cork
into that motherfucker's blowhole.

Static fizzles from the hall;
a guard flits past the barred door
like visions of home.

Gerald So reads "The Creep with a Blowhole":

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Trevor confesses: I was locked in the Ogle County Jail with a filthy old man who was convicted of molesting his granddaughter. Every now and then, he crawled from his nest of sweat-stained sheets to blow phlegm from his tracheostomy hole into the trashcan. He is the creep with a blowhole.

TREVOR NELSON lives in Rockford, Illinois. He is completing a bachelor’s degree in English at Northern Illinois University. His prose and poetry have appeared in 5x5, Awosting Alchemy, and Voices.

1 comment:

Dorothy James said...

This poem is difficult to read because of the very, very ugly images that it presents. But compare it with the prose "confession" of Trevor Nelson, and you will see instantly what a poem is. This is, in all its ugliness, a poem. It leaves striking images on the mind, and is not forgettable, as is the prose. I would take my courage in my hands and read more poems by Trevor Nelson.