Gale Acuff


One day when I’m dead I’ll have revenge on
life, mine anyway, how crummy it’s been
and me barely ten years old and wanting
to live to be 100, that’s what they
tell me at Sunday School I should want, and
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want
but not when I’m getting fleeced, ha ha, I
just made that up but with my lousy luck
someone will swipe it and copyright it
and I’ll be left out again like I am
now, at regular school I’m failing fourth
grade and last week I got caught swiping gum
from the drug store and yesterday Mother
and Father and I ate out at the Korn
Dawg King and I got tickled and my root
beer shot out through my nose and everyone
laughed save for a few girls my age who screamed
and me in love with one of them but now
I hate myself even more than she must 
although last night I dreamt she cleaned me up
and whispered I love you Gale – I could die
for love of you and then she said goodbye
and I woke with what they call a start, that’s
a word straight out of books, in my empty 
bed in darkness that was as thick with dark
as a corn dog heavy with batter. Dark.

Gale Acuff has had hundreds of poems published in several countries and is the author of three books of poetry. He has taught university English in the US, China, and Palestine.