Jimmy Broccoli is a Library Branch Manager by day and a published poet by night with a mission to inspire his readers through imaginative poetic storytelling. His work has been featured in several publications and he released his first full length book, “Damaged” on Christmas Day 2021, he is the collector and editor of the anthology, “Spotlight” – and his second collection of poems, “Rabbits”, will be available on New Year’s Day 2023. He enjoys walks on the beach and playing with puppies.
He and I Whittling Wooden Boats by the Crik
He and I are whittling wooden boats – and I don’t know what the fuck I’m doing – I’m a city boy and know how to drink alcohol at the pub and can shoot pool balls into the pockets like a motherfucking all-star He tells me I swear too much He and I are whittling wooden boats – sitting on a just-barely-out-of-town dock by a lake – or a crik, or a stream (or some body of water I know little about) We go for a short walk (to stretch the legs) “What are you doing?”, I ask him – as I watch him pick a flower-thing off a bush, then pull on the stem and then watch him put it into his mouth. “It’s, honeysuckle”, he laughs – and I don’t know what that is and don’t want to seem ignorant “Maybe we’ll see fireflies”, I say randomly “I reckon you mean lighnin’ bugs”, he says with a coy smile And I wonder if I should tell him I know what a hootenanny is – I saw a YouTube video on it once It involves a fiddler and a barn and stacks of hay – And a bunch of poorly dressed drunk people moving about and having fun - and that’s all I know about it We’re back at the dock - he and I are whittling wooden boats – and mine looks more like a potato than a boat “Nice work, handsome”, he tells me – and I blush We sit on the isolated dock by the crik He shows me how to pull the stem from the flower-thing – from the honeysuckle – and I totally don’t get it Then - we release our wooden boats – My wooden boat topples over, like a drunken man or like a potato in water – while his floats and moves down the crik – and it keeps going And – suddenly – or, just for a moment – I get it The honeysuckle in my mouth tastes sweet – and I’m cheering on his wooden boat He picks up my wooden boat from out of the water – it landed between two rocks in the crik when it toppled over “I think it’s beautiful”, he tells me And it still totally looks more like a potato than a boat “May I keep it?”, he asks – and I tell him yes I taste the sweetness of honeysuckle again, willingly – and listen (gently) to the soothing sounds of the crik as he and I lay next to each other, silently on the dock – I listen to the sounds of the birds being birds – and see those who fly, fly above - and I don’t yet know what any of this means – but something tells me this is important
I’m Going to Need for This to Happen
And then my memory slips (on purpose) – and then slips again – and then slips again – to the point reality is something different from what I had known, and I no longer cling to previous knowledge. – it’s not now how it was – and Lycan (his name means “werewolf”), my canine son, is on my lap as I sit on the comfortable black pleather couch with sensible and supportive cushions – he is licking my face – giving me kisses – and my boyfriend is in the kitchen popping the popcorn. We’ll be watching a movie tonight. …and reality is different. My canine son isn’t dead – he’s alive – and this reality suits me fine. My boyfriend sits next to me – his loving hand within mine (I’m going to marry him – he’s so gentle and loving and he loves me, despite my flaws) and Lycan walks onto his lap and gives him kisses. Lycan really likes Joe – and I’m very happy about it. We’re watching a horror movie – and my boyfriend is squeamish (just means he’ll grip my hand tighter) and Lycan is quite fine with all the violence and the blood. He understands it – he was hit by a car in 2013 [it was my fault] – so he understands it. He wagged his tail 4 times, while within my arms – at the end, his neck was squirting blood and I didn’t know how to stop it – and he died – in a very different reality – a reality where he died and I’m not now sitting next to my boyfriend, who I love very much, and he loves me – despite my flaws. My canine son isn’t dead – and I’m sitting here on the couch with my boyfriend, and we are falling in love. And Lycan isn’t dead. He isn’t dead. He’s not dead – and I’m going to need for you to stop telling me he is. We’re watching a horror movie and Lycan is here – he’s sitting, peacefully and happily, on my lap. I see him here and know it to be true. ___ “I prefer this reality”, I scream at my psychiatrist – while un-reclined on a lumpy therapy couch that should have been a chair. “I’m going to need for you to make this happen – I much prefer it”. And she makes notes – frantically - as she always does. I think she is writing me a prescription and she may be moments away from calling the police. So, I look down, violently, at the light blue and slightly stained carpeted ground in defeat. I’m going to need for this to happen. I’m going to need for this to fucking happen. And I need it right now. How are you misunderstanding me? Am I not making myself clear?