Construction Literary Magazine

March 2019: Conflict & Displacement

The Neighborhood Girls Split Tips After Their Shift, Late May

The Neighborhood Girls Split Tips After Their Shift, Late May
Photograph via Flickr by shannonpatrick17


         Dairy Queen on Market Street

O downtown do you

        $1 for you

remember them locking up, our bubbes

        $1 for me

swallowing homelands, diasporas,

        $2 for you

keys to pawn-shop diamonds

        $2 for me

hocked by hookers trying to get

        $3 for you

honest: collateral catastrophe,

        $3 for me

calamity—can you remember

        $4 for you

our grandmothers, their safety

        $4 for me

deposit boxes shining

        $5 for you

bronze with bills, with corn,

        $5 for me

with lanes of traffic north?

        $6 for you

Generations later, how even

        $6 for me

we split into them—

        $7 you

how high we stack

        $7 me

the presidents’ heads.