Disposing of Gum

By William Ogden Haynes


The flavor of tart cinnamon,

wet with saliva,

was now chewed dry and tasteless.

But it was the glue

that held them together.

She wanted to carefully

fold hers in a wrapper,

place it in her purse

and not create a mess.

To him,

it didn’t matter

whether he spat it on the sidewalk,

or surreptitiously stuck it

to the bottom of a theatre seat

in the darkness.

They thought these things

in aisle six of the supermarket,

pushing a cart with enough groceries

for the next two weeks.





William Ogden Haynes is a poet from Alabama and has published poetry in literary journals such as California Quarterly and PIF Magazine. His chapbook entitled Five Thousand Days has been accepted for publication in 2011 by Negative Capability Press in Mobile, AL. He has been invited to read his work at several arts festivals in the state and believes that the mark of a good poem is that, at the end, people feel glad they read or heard it. In a prior life he taught speech-language pathology at Auburn University and authored six major professional textbooks.


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