The Twinkie Fanatics, A Poem by Chris Russell

The shopping cart was wheeling down the road. Kids had been playing pranks lately. Recently they’d caused a couple of car accidents and a message to parents had gone out over the local news to make sure their children were inside by a certain time every night. Department stores were locking their carts up outside as a result of the mischief. Each shopping cart station in the parking lot was assigned a cart manager to make sure carts were retrieved and delivered in an appropriate fashion. They’d let one slip through, apparently. It almost rolled over when it hit a rock. “Negligence is negligence,” I said. “You can’t hide incompetence,” Kirk said.  “And yet parents themselves were once children, so what do you expect?” I said. “Are you a fan of Twinkies?” He said. “You know, they say, this street is haunted,” I said. “You must believe in ghosts if you’re thinking something like that. I suppose you think ghosts live on streets,” he said. “Why not? Who says they have to live in a house,” I said. “Hauntings happen in buildings because people die in them, and their soul can’t move on. But from all we see on the news and in the obituaries, it seems more and more people are dying outside of the home, so it only makes sense ghosts have started to haunt the outside places,” he said. “Or you’re thinking your eternal, and believing you’re eternal, but ghosts can be helped to pass over, and yet no ghost hunter ever goes with them,” I said. “You’re just a skeptic,” he said. “The worst,” I said. “It’s not good for you to be that cynical,” he said. “I must have depression,” I said. “You probably do,” he said. “No doubt,” I said. The cart had made it safely down the hill, and had come to a stop in a parking place behind a maroon Lebaron. “It’s like it was meant to be,” he said. “How much change do we have left?” I said. “How are you and Margaret doing?” he said. “Are you always like this?” I said. “Seriously, have they stopped pulling up her flowers?” he said. “I told the caretaker about it, and he’s been keeping an eye on it,” I said. “On her,” he said. “She’s not there anymore Kirk,” I said. “Maybe not. Dead is dead. But DNA never dies,” he said. “But it doesn’t walk around a roll shopping carts down busy streets in the middle of the day either,” I said. “When you were a kid did you like crème horns?” he said. “Yeah, I loved them so much I married one,” I said. “What if we could make a house out of Twinkies? Would you live in it?” he said. As long as I could,” I said.

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