Charlie By John Stupp


I was in great shape
but couldn’t keep up with Charlie
no one could
he chased after work
tackled it picked it up carried it
drove it kicked it cut it swept it drilled it
and fought it
and when he finished
work looked like Carmen Basilio
after Sugar Ray Robinson cut his eye
in Chicago 1958
just a bloody dirty mess—
the rest of us were nothing
the foundry ran because Charlie made it run
and Ford engines were made because Charlie made them
he was like a novel no one wants to read
because the effort to get there is so great
like chasing rats on a forklift
for love

By John Stupp


John Stupp is the author of the 2007 chapbook The Blue Pacific and the 2015 full-length collection Advice from the Bed of a Friend both by Main Street Rag. Recent poetry has appeared or will be appearing in Drunk Monkeys, Cactus Heart, Vending Machine Press, Icarus Down, Weirderary, Wordrunner eChapbooks, SHARKPACK Poetry Review, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and on the radio show Prosody. He lives near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

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