by Jes C. Kuhn
The Boy and the Frog
Everyone will remember
the boy and the frog,
how he smacked the small sinless body
onto the concrete until
her tongue and entrails stuck to the fresh tar
and shredded tire.
The boy with frosted blonde spikes,
on a skull swinging rat tails,
the shapes of folding switchblades in his cheekbones.
No one will forget the way he held
the slender green extension of leg,
the echoing slaps and gasps,
the sound of amphibian death,
the sound of magic lost
in the swaying pedestrian wildfire of youth.
The boy who was punched into oil drums
and empty paint buckets,
slapped under spilling color,
bedpost brown or
silver coffin shine,
washed under the abusive feet of a father,
a man with the structure of a flooded garage.
And like the frog,
the boy wanted to rip out my jaw
and dislodge my tongue,
his interpretive beatings
performed in school yard inclines,
for all the white kids to see,
so all witness
the price paid for hereditary violence.
The girls watched
under the spray-bottle pressure
of their coral reef bangs
and the boys,
weights of misguided muscle
covered in cigarette butts and skid row tees,
a back-up chorus assault on the faggot
through soda can cannons
and stolen rocks from upper-middle class landscaping.
The boy in his boxer cosplay,
his glam pop of bare knuckles
in my soapy pouf of a face.
…but I am glittered in safety now,
and everything I love is sleeping,
dreaming of branches,
a scaling dance of passing on,
as cats in their sanctuary,
as nature is paused.
And who will remember
the boy and the frog?
The boy thoroughly aged
in domestic and industrial accidents,
with wife and child gone,
unlike the frog,
who dropped her eggs in a puddle
he is only left with two dried legs,
like the frog’s,
that he whipped to the ground,
so the gutted lashes would resound
in the hollow passages of his ancestral foreclosure.
Last updated February 12, 2016