David Lohrey: Poetry: August 2021

Southern Legitimacy Statement: I’m a Memphian, currently living just outside Jacksonville, Florida.


She is all about living large, She, with a capital S.
Living large is easy when you’ve never worked.
Working sooner or later makes you feel small. It
grinds you down, tears you up; we all go into the
meat grinder, unless somehow you luck out. 

It’s the grand dream. Not my father’s: no, he wanted
to work. In his time, for his generation, work was fulfilling.
By the time I was at the age of fulfillment, I wanted out.
I belong to the lottery generation. I have been waiting
to win. I don’t want to work at the five & dime.

I wouldn’t mind having me one of them Durango automobiles.
I’ll take mine now. I’d like it in green, but what the hell?
Brown or black, who cares? Wouldn’t even mind playing the slots. 
All I know is, I want to win, take my winnings, and head home. 
Not yet…I’m already down five-hundred bucks.

You have got to get the picture, the real picture of what’s
going on. You ain’t winning. I’ll say it again: you ain’t winning
nothing. You are going to lose that car. You are going to lose your
bride. If you are not able to straighten up, you’d just as well lose
your mind. Without work, as dad used to say, there’s nothing good.

If you can’t work, you cheat life. Here comes some wisdom. Waiting
to win at the slots is no way to finish the fight. You got to stop playing.
You’re acting like a pretty girl waiting on a date. Get it together. 
You got to get a job. Save. Suffer. Give up this life. You’ve got to get 
back down the coal mine and start digging. I don’t care how, dad says.