The kids are drunk, acting like adults

Three poems by Robbie Forsyth

Robbie Forsyth studies literature at Cal State San Marcos.
  • Robbie Forsyth studies literature at Cal State San Marcos.

Literature 309B, Modern to Multicultural American Literature

  • In the upper division Lit classes
  • there’s a loose interpretation of truth.
  • The instructor faintly prompts discussion
  • and each student speaks, one at a time, as
  • in a bookish courtroom, kids on trial.
  • It reminds me of the halfway houses,
  • rehabs, and camps for dangerous children;
  • those helpless counselors, faintly prompting,
  • and teenage junkies, just off heroin
  • pitching lofty love advice to young drunks.
  • Some lying, some too smart for their own good,
  • in for a wash and a certificate
  • as if it makes life easier out there.
  • Some dying, desperate enough to pray.

Passing the Fitting Room

  • A woman is pulling jeans up white thighs.
  • They are too tight and she is bent
  • squishing the dough of her legs into unforgiving denim.
  • Tired breasts toss and heave in her shirt and
  • a bright thong invades her furry behind
  • like a snake strangling a fat bird.
  • Craters and veins, patches of blue and yellow and purple
  • painted on the wide canvas.
  • As she slowly tips over, an impossible color of
  • dyed red hair covers her face upside down.
  • Her son, by the open door, wonders why.

New Years Eve

  • The adults are drunk and
  • acting like children
  • and the kids are drunk,
  • acting like adults
  • acting like children.

Robbie Forsyth is the son of a grocery clerk and a third-grade teacher. He studies literature at Cal State San Marcos.  

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