our father who art in atlantic city

everynight, playing slot machines,


playing at something, our father

of the squandered unfortunes, our


father of the elemental blue collar

platitudes, our father (of johnny


carson fame) biting his stubby

nails with crowned teeth, our father


who art crossing the border into

indiana and staying overnight and

voting red and eating cans of corn


our father who art in wildwood

our father who art in west Virginia


our father who art in Oaxaca

our father who art in philly


building houses, our father

who art in reno is wretchedly


overruled, and we do not sell

the house and buy a camper


and a small dog and a parakeet

and travel America, and maybe

Canada too, us three, patenting

imaginative but practical inventions

and cooking potatoes wrapped

in aluminum nestled in the warm

corners of fires, kept carefully

in their circles

with burn-scarred but

enduring gray bricks