Poetry: Jack & Jill by Kyle Hemmings

Jack & Jill

two club kids
          jack & jill 
     their dreams have bar codes
& quick hands

they  vodka tongue-twist
   until dance of dawn

who’s counting? she thinks,
twelve bourbons fourteen bronsons & three left feet
between them

outside, under late-night neon
he almost rapes her reflection
she scars his shadow
   they walk home
                     pigeon-toed & forgetful
& leaking darkness

in a pre-war tenement, they're squatters,
a woolen blanket he shoplifted from Dollar & Dimes
    withholds their heat until the winter can kill them both.
in the morning, he wakes up to her skin secreting the scents
     of sleep & vomit

he gets a job as a temp
she freelances for an artist turned pimp
  jack proposes to her by email
   jill sends him a virus

later, they have mad make-up sex
           after he loses her childhood chia-pet

the honeymoon at the edge of town:
                  they're savants of selfies & i-phone apps
they watch late-night movies
until they can no longer
belch or laugh

the next morning
he watches the sunrise glow in her hair
    it sets his clocks back to when he could love
     w/out stipulations or rehearsals
to when names didn't matter

they grow toward middle-class comfort
   she's his best video game princess
she weeps at his Ponzi schemes
                  his unworkable e-cars

in the mirror
she tells her image she's pregnant
"Jill," she says, "you're full of life."

they smile
they beam
they blush

            she loses the baby
            to a technical glitch

after her overdose
he sleeps on hard foam memory

on an empty beach, he wonders
is she the ghost of all drowning men?

on his computer screen
her little girl avatar singing
 “you are my sunshine”

Kyle Hemmings has been published in Kyso Flash, Right Hand Pointing, Dark Entries, and elsewhere. He loves 60s garage bands, 50s sci-fi flicks, and street photography. 


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