Today's poem is by Christopher Kempf

What Happens in Vegas

is almost invisible in the glitter. City
from the sky like a rhinestone. Or see,
      rather, what once

the Spanish saw—spread
of green fields fed
      by well. What

the earliest evangelists named vegas. Staging
point. Promise
      of water. Where,

instead, the West lapped back
on itself like a flood
      & festered. Spread

legs of the Empire Club. Front
of the Mirage, a man
      dressed as SpongeBob beats

the pavement. Off
Paradise a warehouse heaped
      with meat. With sweet-

bread. With stomach & tongue. Touch
nothing. Or touch
      only the lapped mouth money

can buy. I—one
hooker to another—have been working
      all month on my moan.

Vegas. The lake
of your Bellagio—      beautiful
      almost-explodes every hour

to the music of Cher, the same
water, rumor
      has it, the city

showers with. Consider
that moment. To hose
      from one's skin six

times per shift the salt
of men. Remember
      that like the flesh faith

is peddled easily here & belief
is our dearest myth. Let history
      be banished to the desert. Let the rest

of the city drink, now,
from its own mouth
      & be drunk.

Copyright © 2017 Christopher Kempf All rights reserved
from Late in the Empire of Men
Four Way Books
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

Archives  Web Weekly Features  About Verse Daily  FAQs  Submit to Verse Daily  Follow Verse Daily on Twitter

Copyright © 2002-2017 Verse Daily All Rights Reserved