fall 2018 / Poetry 2018 / volume 49

The Cold—Eric Greinke

On an early morning in March
a gourmet chef walking his dog
discovered two frozen corpses
beneath an expressway underpass.
One wore four layers of clothing,
the other wore just three.
They were stiff & frost-bitten,
fingers & toes a pale, alien blue,
lips white as a high lone cloud.
A nearby shopping cart held
everything they used to own.
One man had the business card
of a rehabilitation center
with a meth dealer’s number
penciled on the back,
folded in half in his shirt pocket,
close to his frozen heart.
The other clutched a knife in his stiff fist.
The gourmet chef took the day off.

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