Ted Millar teaches English at Mahopac High School, and creative writing and poetry at Marist College. His poems have appeared in Caesura, Circle Show, The Broke Bohemian, The Voices Project, Third Wednesday, Tiny Poetry: Macropoetics, Scintilla, GFT Press, Inklette, The Grief Diaries, Cactus Heart, Aji, Wordpool Press, The Artistic Muse, Chronogram, Brick Plight and Inkwell.
In addition to writing poetry, he is also a frequent contributor to Liberal America and Liberal Nation Rising.
He lives in the heart of apple and wine country in New York’s Hudson Valley with his wife and two children.
The Last Unarmed American
To my neighbor who mows his lawn every Thursday
with a sidearm dangling from the elastic waistband
of his shorts, let me just say I think the only intruder
on your property at night is the coyote skulking
from the woods to hunt the feral cat your wife feeds.
To the tank-topped guy manning the roadside
watermelon stand with his palm on a conspicuous hilt,
I ask, have matters in the produce industry gotten so dire
you feel it necessary to bear arms?
I understand this store is named “Target”
and its logo is a big red bull’s eye, but you two
sauntering through stationery with rifles slung
across your backs like Chewbacca need more help
than Scotch tape and sticky notes can provide.
I didn’t curse you, driver ahead of me,
for jack-knifing an unspecified right turn.
I didn’t flip you off, tail-gater zipping past me
on Route 9W, despite having my kids in the car.
I remember (most days) to say “please” and “thank you”
to those whom I might be more inclined to damn.
But if I happen to get a little short with you,
if I seem a little perturbed, rest assured
you won’t pay in blood.
© 2018 Ted Millar