the muse apprentice guild
--expanding the canon into the 21st century




FOUR WORKS
BY JASON LEE BROWN

SCOOBY MYSTERY

Again, Uncle Mark sleeps
on our hide-a-bed/love-seat.
Arms cover his head,
hiding whiskey breath and
black pitted eye sockets.

I tickle his armpit to make
him twitch and stop snoring
Then click on Saturday
morning cartoons--
Tom and Jerry and Scooby Doo.

Velma bends over to find her glasses.

Uncle Mark jerks off
The empty whiskey bottle
from his crotch--

I don't flinch, while Scooby falls
into solving another mystery.

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CHILD CARE QUESTIONS

root beer pop-cycle
tongue, lips sticky
with brown drippings
eyes level,
              kitchen table,
white knuckles
grip, lift, tipping
breaking wrist.

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COMPARING PARENTS

When I was 15
I thought
the only difference
between my father
and mother was this:

my mother ignored
the hidden magazines
in the closet corner
under the satchel
basketball and amp
in a Trapper keeper
titled science research
in the blue folder

while my father
actually gave me time
to masturbate to them

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THE UNCONVINCING PROPOSAL

with no laurels to rest upon
not even this engagement ring
my first instinct is
to second-guess myself
and again, I'm 99.9% sure
(this time I'll round up)
we can be together?
but that point-one percent
will always be the question


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