You don’t find him

he finds you

like a lottery lawyer.

You start out on Sunday

early in the morning

before sunrise

you haul your ass out of bed

last night’s debauchery with Leah

a fog shrouded  memory

she’s face down now, snoring

and you’re hoping she doesn’t

remember all of it

but it’s a new day,  so you…

pull your jogging shorts

from the dryer

lace up your one hundred fifty dollar


tell yourself that with vitamin B1

and a pot of coffee you’ll be good as new

and don’t forget that

pomegranate juice was handed down

from heaven

as an elixir for the decadent

and then…

you kiss the dog goodbye

crank Commander Cody on the iPod

and next thing you know

you’re jogging down the 4-lane highway

past the freshly mowed alfalfa field

blood pumping through your veins

and pressing on bravely

through barely passable arteries

Hot Rod Lincoln is racing

through your ear drums

and you are hauling rear for the mailbox

a mile past the house

where the kid

that you’ve forgotten to pay

for the past six weeks

is supposed to leave

the Philadelphia Inquirer.

But halfway there it happens

a shin splint

a muscle spasm

you’re cursing – kicking the blacktop

with your one good leg, so

you hop back home to  the porch

you sit in the swing

you kick off  the cross trainers

“damn” you say

a glitch in the training plan

and then he’s there

standing behind you

three feet behind your left shoulder

like your old man

the day you tried to snitch

a PBR from the basement fridge

when you were fifteen  years old


you recognize the arrogant bastard:

Mr. Mortality.

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