Poem by Dennis Mahagin

Ion Blues

Dawn arrives like a dead battery

thrice paid for.

He stops
his moaning and coughs;
he stops and walks
outside;

like a dead battery nobody
prayed for,

he softly coughs and locks
the door.

These are the Ion Blues. they are sad,
commonplace,
and true.

He traces his fingers
on the icy hood
covered with inches of snow.
He traces his fingers
on the Mustang hood
covered with inches of snow.
He thinks of the love that will drive
her away,
the love he’ll never get
to know:

the love of a life that drives and so
he never gets
to know
these are the Ion Blues,
they are sad, common
place and true.

She’s safe at home
with her charges,
she’s got a lover too,
she’s kind of happy
there with her charges,
she’s got her a
lover too.
She knows of the other
attraction
—that it’s sad, common
and true.

They will not be together
this winter,
nor the next hundred
and sixty, too.

These are the Ion Blues,

they are sad
sad and true.

He turns the key
and the battery
speaks now
to the heart nearly paid for:

You’re still alive, it says
softly, get out,
or walk

through the dawn of the love that won’t start.

These are the Ion Blues.

They are sad, common

place and true.

Dennis Mahagin is the author of two poetry collections: Grand Mal, from Rebel Satori Press (2012) and Longshot and Ghazal (Mojave River Press, 2014). Dennis is also the bassist and backup singer for a blues band (as well as a rock band) based in Deer Lodge, Montana.

David J. Thompson is a former prep school teacher and coach who now lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Raymond Carver, John Sayles, and John Prine are high on his list of heroes. His poetry/photography book Grace Takes Me Is available from Vegetarian Alcoholic Press.

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1 Comment

  1. A fantastic poem and I particularly loved the dawn arriving like a dead battery simile. Thanks for sharing! I am a Creative Life Coach and have a poetry blog in case you have time to read? http://www.peacockpoetryblog.wordpress.com and I am also on Instagram as #coachingcreatively – let’s follow each other if you use this medium? You can also find me on Facebook under Sam Allen wearing a bright red and orange hat! Have a good day?

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