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"Anything Exciting Going on in the Outside World?"

—Ace Boggess

"Anything Exciting Going on in the Outside World?"

                                        question asked by Sarena Fox

Wish I could say the post-pandemic orgies

          have begun,

that we’re out here frolicking, flesh-stuck,

          fiercely free,

our bodies so intertwined we can’t locate

          the elbow that goes with the hand we hold.

Wish I could say the war overseas has ended,

          tanks forever buried in mud,

last shells duds, missiles frozen

          on their launching pads.

Wish I could say the angry rants of politics

          have settled to a soothing coo,

that everyone loves everyone else,

          the last slimy droplets of hate-spit

having hit the ground.

Wish I could say the Governor believes

          in clemency

for crimes of addiction—yours, mine—his pen

          halfway to writing your name on a writ.

Wish I could say it, but out here,

          it’s still the tedium, slog,

the world you left, the world that never leaves


ACE BOGGESS is the author of six books of poetry, most recently Escape Envy. His writing has appeared in Michigan Quarterly Review, Notre Dame Review, Harvard Review, Mid-American Review, and other journals. An ex-con, he lives in Charleston, West Virginia, where he writes and tries to stay out of trouble.

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