Small town gossip in paradise

did you hear?

photo by Stacey Warde

Did you hear
about the girl who gave a blow job,

a one-night hookup, in the restaurant bathroom
downtown, and now the guy’s girlfriend

refuses to enter the coffee shop next door,
or even look that way,

where the little whore works
on the weekends?

Did you hear
about the cute waitress who did a porno,

which would have been ok
(because everyone does it now)

if she hadn’t done it
with that slacker

who sits in front of the liquor store
and smokes cigarettes all day?

Did you hear
about the lonely single mom, a “nooner,”

who likes to go
home and fuck for lunch?

(If you’re not doing
anything around noon time

you might get lucky.)

Did you hear
about that loser who got high on marijuana

and cough syrup and killed his grandmother
(accidentally, he said)

stuffed her body
into a suitcase and threw her

off a cliff in Big Sur?

Did you hear that
before they arrested him he got on

the school bus
to pass out flyers to the children

to help him find his missing grandma?

Did you hear
about that crazy old joe

who answered the door
with stick pretzels hanging from his nose

when the cops came knocking?

Did you hear about the clown,
loose in the head they say,

who got his revenge
by rubbing his manhood, balls and all,

over the glass door of the corner
wine bistro on its busiest night?

He gave quite a show
“swabbin’ it real good,” they say.

Did you hear about the martial
arts world champion

who got pummeled by
a bunch of drunk cowboys?

How his girlfriend got whacked
on the head with a cowgirl’s purse?

Did you hear
about the guy who hung himself from the pier?

At the crack of dawn there
he was hanging from a rope

dangling between the
pile ons like a shadow

above the ocean where
the pigeons leave their droppings.

Did you hear the lady
from Fresno who, after

several drinks shouted,
“You guys are so lucky; you live in paradise!”?

—Ibrahim Ahmed


  1. Love it! Keep going you are on to something,
    Did you hear about the Norwegian who shot himself in the head with a nail gun?

    1. Kate: I’m sure Ibrahim will be glad to know that you love his poem. He’s definitely on something. And, yes, we have heard about Brad Marz. He was our friend and we will sorely miss him. Also, suicide seems to be a real problem in Cayucos.

      1. Sadly, the day following the posting of the comment about suicide being a problem in Cayucos, the day in fact when Dell and I paid our respects in memory of Brad, through whispers in a coffee shop downtown, came news of yet another Cayucos suicide, a young man who put a gun to his head.

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