“Man in Nursing Home,” by Oak Morse

Apr 20th, 2022 | By | Category: Poetry

One morning man in nursing home

walks out of room with robe open, genitals hanging out.

Lady next door shouts Oh my goodness!

Then slams her door.

Man lifts genitals and says They dead.

Then walks onto elevator,

janitor there gasps

and man says They dead. 

Man walks into lobby into choral huffs and sighs.

Nurse yells Mr. Tom why you have your  

private parts all hanging out? 

Man grabs them and says They dead.

I understand that, 

but why do you have them out? 

Man replies They dead and today’s the viewing.


Oak Morse lives in Houston, Texas, where he teaches creative writing and theatre and leads a youth poetry troop, the Phoenix Fire-Spitters. He was the winner of the 2017 Magpie Award for Poetry in Pulp Literature, a Finalist for the 2020 Witness Literary Award and a Semi-Finalist for the 2020 Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry. Currently a Warren Wilson MFA candidate, Oak has received Pushcart Prize nominations, fellowships from Brooklyn Poets, Twelve Literary Arts, Cave Canem, Palm Beach Poetry Festival as well as a Stars in the Classroom honor from the Houston Texans. His work appears in Black Warrior Review, Tupelo, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, Nimrod, Cosmonaut Avenue, Solstice, among others.

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