Normal Country by Jeremiah Moriarty

it’s wild that some homophobes think
                 queerness emerges from a lack
                   a victim chalk outline where

             some better dad should be 
                   where pavement collects and 
      america is a freedom ambulance stuck 

  in freedom traffic               bald eagle tears
    rotten apple    in this scenario only one 
can live           a broken soldier or the boy in question 

                                  live as in love as in leave  
a balanced equation            down the line the angels go
      thinking a different figure 

would make a better grave
 digger          though never in those words
never metal to metal tempo

                           always chicken noodle soup
     for the demon baby’s soul
                never the violence they seed

              or the transaction they crave
            rock to rock and secret bleach
what will they say                when they find me 

                   here                little white chalk in hand 
  approximating their shape               
                        in the midnight corridor of becoming a man 

Jeremiah Moriarty is a queer writer from Minnesota. His poems and stories have appeared in The Rumpus, No Tokens, Puerto del Sol, Catapult, Breakwater Review, and elsewhere. He lives in St. Paul.