Issue 4, Autumn 2007

Sonnet for Wal-Mart
by Bethany Tyler Lee


It’s you we blame for gutted bakeries
and darkened seamstress shops, for our need to buy
flip-flops and grapes at three a.m., to have
our hearts’ needs met for less than five dollars
at a go. We deride the smiling way you roll
across a cashier’s sick sons, want you when
the toilet paper runs thin. We are not
so different, Wally. We’re not above shoving
the people we need just to raise our stocks, and who
among us hasn’t once confused fucking over
with making love? None of us will become more
than a glut of stuff on someone’s shelves. When we die,
and arrive in dark, we’ll say, Yes, we’ve seen this
place before. The flashlights are on aisle twenty-nine.