kansas city barbeque

men toss split logs in the pit,

fire and smoke and sparks,

forks, slicers, and knives


at the barbeque joint,

the ancient desire

for fire in the night


the man at the register

pickles, slaw,

and piece of a pie


fries, ham and beef sandwiches

sausages, short ends, long ends, chicken—

quarter and half


customers in worn boots, neckties,

exurb voyeurs, families,

tourists, and executives


meat piled high,

drowned in sauce,

swallowed in minutes


we stretch bellies taut

eat until our eyes roll back—

surely this is prosperity