The Ogre of East Atlanta  

by Brian Bannon

The Ogre of East Atlanta

He roams these urban woods in search of cigarettes.

Nocturnal by nature, ash light and moonbeams guide his way.

His lower mouth speaks in the past tense. “McPherson died here.”

His upper mouth speaks of the future. “This will be another gourmet burger joint soon.”

His middle mouth is ever present. “Got a light?”

Long ago his feet flattened shoals, his hands crested boulders.

The pools of his many pupils dilate in the dark. Or constrict under opiates.

His mind’s eye takes it all in. This old, unglamorous neighborhood whose scars became endearing.

In autumn the woods take over as leaves envelope asphalt. Is this a city gone feral? He lives for the nightlife. Bands and bars and bummed smokes.

But the night ends before sunrise. Where to roam after last call?

“The saddest place in East Atlanta is Happy Donuts around 3:00 a.m.”

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