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About this Poem 

“I was driving down Westheimer Road in Houston, Texas, when I noticed the erratically driven car in front of me with the Ayn Rand vanity plate. I couldn’t help but imagine it plowing into a nearby bakery. I suppose the pigeons in my poem represent most of us—though I’m not sure if God is grinning at the economic system that brought them such good fortune, or at something else.”

—Kevin Prufer

Bread and Cake

Kevin Prufer
The black Mercedes
with the Ayn Rand 
vanity plate
crashed through 
the glass bus stop
and came to rest 
among a bakery’s 
upturned tables.
In the stunned silence,  
fat pigeons descended 
to the wreckage
and pecked at 
the scattered
bread and cake.
The driver slept,
head to the wheel.
The pigeons grew
rich with crumbs.
The broken glass winked.
God grinned.

Copyright @ 2014 by Kevin Prufer. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-a-Day on May 5, 2014.

Kevin Prufer

by this poet

The old cat was dying in the bushes.
Its breaths came slow, slow, 
                                          and still
it looked out over the sweetness of the back lawn,
the swaying of tall grass in the hot wind,
the way sunlight warmed the garbage can's 
sparkling lid.  
                   It closed its hot
They wanted him to stop kicking like that—
it made their eyes corkscrew, drilled the sun in the sky
so light dumped out like blood from a leak.
The boy in the trunk wouldn't die.

They drove and drove, and he dented the trunk's tight lid,
called their names, then pounded the wheel wells
with a tire iron. The sun
A good way to fall in love
is to turn off the headlights
and drive very fast down dark roads.

Another way to fall in love
is to say they are only mints
and swallow them with a strong drink.

Then it is autumn in the body.
Your hands are cold.
Then it is winter and we are still at war.

The gold-haired girl is