"Toyota Tacoma" - Alx Johns

 

"Toyota Tacoma" - Alx Johns

I drive one, like so many do
And lately mine`s
Looking more and more
Like the real thing,
 
Gravel-scratched paint on
That too-familiar frame
Spitting dust through
Some pathetic village
Past retreating figures
 
Somalia,
Sierra Leone
Afghanistan
 
Illiterate, skinny boys
In back, behind
That .50 cal.
Shell casings crowding
Around calloused bare feet.
 
Hell, desperate
Libyans even welded
 
Anti-aircraft guns and
Multiple-rocket launchers
 
Into the bed of a jacked-up Prerunner,
mine`s got some straw, stray sticks and shells
 
From pistachios tossed out
The window, caught then dropping in that
Swirl of wind.
 
Rwanda, Uganda
Arkansas
 
Remember that tired footage
Of him, Bin Laden, the devil incarnate
Kneeling before one, firing his Russian rifle
To the muezzin`s sacred approval?
 
Toyota,
This is how to market yourself to the twenty-first century,
Vehicle of the human will,
The choice of warlords worldwide
The Kalashnikov of pick-up trucks.


"Toyota Tacoma" was originally published in Alx's 2014 chapbook, Robot Cosmetics. Photo above: The consistent recurrence of Toyota trucks in promotional materials released by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, aka ISIS, has captured the attention of federal investigators.

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