Merry Christmas

Bourbon and Christmas lights
between Christine’s bed and the drugstore,
where I get the call,
and another week in purgatory.
She wants the kid and I want rocky road ice cream
in ten degree, long underwear weather
and she calls me a child
because I drink like my old man.

We were teenagers
and we were in love
and we were in trouble
but she believed in the reason for the season
and I got left out in the cold.
So we’re here.

I got my woman in heat,
a 12-pack, a 12-pack, a pill problem
and 24 hours off thanks to a baby
born in a manger
but all I can think about is the voice
of a mother
who needs an angel to visit
instead of me.

We have nothing
but grief and spite
and that would be sufficient if
I hadn’t spent my bonus
on my lady’s fix
rather than my son’s presents.

Lit Up