John Grey

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident, recently published in Sheepshead Review, Poetry Salzburg Review and Hollins Critic. Latest books, “Leaves On Pages” “Memory Outside The Head” and “Guest Of Myself” are available through Amazon. Work upcoming in Ellipsis, Blueline and International Poetry Review.


Attention Miss,
I am Cliff- that's with a C from
the east side
and also an up and comer
in a Fortune 500 company

and not one of those who
denies the evil of the late Gaddafi
the Libya leader who had coercion
Libyan people to be under his regime...
when average people survive with $2 per day.

can I buy you a drink?
no this is not a cheap pickup,
I've been noticing you for some time
and I find you both interesting and intriguing

and did you know that Libya
is the second oil producing country
in the entire surface of this Earth
but her citizens live in poorest condition
according to international standard.

I'm not the usual kind of guy
you find in one of these meat markets -
I'm genuine, reliable, sincere

and I wonder if you could help me
to keep the sum of SD$10,500,000.00 Million
with you for my family as most of my
house and assets is taken by Gaddafi loyalist
when he was alive.

Did anyone ever tell you
that you have lovely eyes?
And I really like what you do with your hair

but in case anything happens to me
I would like you to help me keep USD$ 10,500,000.00
which is hidden somewhere in Libya
since I might not survive this situation's aftermath.

If you're interested
I know this quiet little French restaurant and we could...
oh yes, and I have these two tickets to Jersey Boys
and now my sister can't go

and if you are serious to assist me
I will review to you where the funds is deposited in my name
so will you help me to transfer of the money
and give back to my family when the right time comes

really, I've no interest in any kind of one night stand

and my mother's name is Rebecca
but my father, Angelo was shot when he was alive
but what you are to do is take 30% of this money for yourself
and the other 60% for my family

my car's outside if you'd like to go for a ride down by the beach

and if you accept to help me please provide information on
where this money were to be send and how you can pick up
for all arrangement and process to transfer the money is ready.

I promise you, no funny business

and I know this is unconstitutional
asking this favor from you but been a human being
so consider Libyan people on this scenario .
This is worst tragedy and inhuman treatment
and infringement in people's life and freedom
and with your immediate acceptance to help me
I will update you in furtherance to get the money out from here.

What's your name? Donna? I like that name

and if you are interested please send your full names,
direct telephone numbers, and physical address,
more details will be given upon your reply.
your quick response will be highly appreciated.
Finally, If you are interested I will attached my Passport,
and a picture of my mother.

My mother's name is Rebecca
I have a feeling she's really going to like you.


I saw the ad first -
come see Florida 
strip naked before you, 
dip your frozen feet in her tides,
your clammed-up features 
in the wind off her oceans.
But I am a cynic from the far north.
I don’t feel free.
I am not thriving.
The locals are cordial enough
but I can’t find the esprit de corps
to even be a fair-weather friend. 
What about the women, you might say.
But I haven’t seen one yet 
who feels like she could shelter me,
bear the children in my life.
And despite the shade of cypress trees
and live oaks,
I’m burning from this redness of the skin.
It was the cramped boat trip
into the dark swamp waters that did me in.
We were packed like breasts in a bikini,
the wildlife stayed well clear of us
and the children screamed like parrots.
That’s Florida: 
a mishmash of heat, 
failed promises,
and insects that leave some
large red calling cards.
Yes, there’s a few who have lived here all their lives.
but I dare you to find one. 
No, this is an end destination 
in the same way that death is.
I’m now a patient in this condom-shaped 
hospital ward in the sun.
Sure I can toss away 
my shoes and socks,
go about bare feet and in sandals.
But I keep my best suit handy.
I’ll need it to be buried in. 


Big, small, guys, girls,
some rush, some straggle,
much pushing, hair-pulling,
some yelling, others cussing,
one or two with heads bowed 
not saying a thing, 
some thinking they’re really important.
others shying away -
they plop down in chairs
far away from the others,
or squeeze in where they’re not wanted.
or demand some poor kid move
so they can take his seat,
lots of jostling, complaining,
elbow jabbing and snarling -
the lesson for today is astronomy,
how all things co-exist 
in the universe.

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