Poetry: Corporal by Shane Chergosky

Our editors love the way Shane Chergosky’s poem generates an authentic and gothic setting out of the skate park—the empty cans, the suggestion of infinity, and that sick, bleeding sky. “Corporal” exceeds itself and its deliberately banal details wonderfully at every opportunity.



I can only imagine
how many hours I spent
watching him twist

a stolen skateboard
into Mobius strips
over the blacktop.

A beacon flashes
on the skyline.
Lake water in the air,

in my lungs.
I cannot bear knowing
there is nothing

honorable here, a gesture
as empty as five cans
of Miller Lite piled

below this bruised Toyota.
Night is a swollen ankle.
Cicadas are everywhere,

screaming as clouds
split and split again: an ulcer
where the moon should be.



Shane Chergosky

Shane Chergosky was born in Minnesota where he was raised on stuffed cabbage and heavy metal. His work has appeared in Four Chambers Press, The Rain, Party, & Disaster Society, and others. He is an MFA candidate at George Mason University.

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