For the Jukebox that Won’t Stop Playing the National Anthem

the sultry ode composed of smashed teeth,
blood stained glass, hammer-fist dents,
ready to turn public spaces into choral
asylums, turn town squares into scorched
earth & blast the blistering notes of
nationalism, numbing the ear drums
in the worst of ways, we howl like drunk
men in wolves clothing, and try to taint our
Palettes with the taste of illusion, disparage
the moon in all of her ominous beauty
finding the image of god in false flags instead
the patrons around the jukebox make a
machine their musing for toxic ideals and
encouraged hate, the American dream doesn’t
know it’s a nightmare yet, it just aimlessly
wanders around a desert of reluctant past lives
and covers its eyes to the passage of time
to you oh mechanical contrivance, I don’t
blame you, I blame those who’ve used you
to conduct sermons designed for the blessed
and detrimental for the forever damned

Photo Credit: kuhnmi Flickr via Compfight cc

J.B. Stone

J.B. Stone is a neurodivergent writer from Brooklyn, now residing in Buffalo. Stone is the author of A Place Between Expired Dreams and Renewed Nightmares (Ghost City Press 2018) and the forthcoming Fireflies & Hand Grenades (Stasia Press 2019). His work has appeared in BlazeVOX, Peach Mag, Glass, Empty Mirror, Maudlin House, Crack the Spine, and elsewhere. You can check out more of his work at or his tweets @JB_StoneTruth.

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