After a long prosperity,
he was shocked to find himself
threadbare and in play,
bandied about by taxis, ricocheting
off the street-faces of women,
and judged by the mouth-breathing cashiers.

Spill-O's images found their way
to the 99-cent stores.

He raged against the heavens
and looked the fool
to the air-conditioned cars.

Before, he could forgive,
could afford to forgive,
could afford so many things
that he could no longer afford.

Spill-O applied for bankruptcy,
just to explain what was happening.
But even his creditors
had forgotten him.

Colin Dodds grew up in Massachusetts and completed his education in New York City. He’s the author of several novels, including WINDFALL and The Last Bad Job, which the late Norman Mailer touted as showing “something that very few writers have; a species of inner talent that owes very little to other people.” Dodds’ screenplay, Refreshment, was named a semi-finalist in the 2010 American Zoetrope Contest. His poetry has appeared in more than a hundred publications, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife Samantha. You can find more of his work at