they pulled him out of his truck
as he sat at an intersection
waiting to go home
to work.

i was told this by my fellow audience members.

when i arrived, he was already
crusted black with blood
stumbling on his feet between blows.

we watched, enjoying the show
unable to look away.

i asked around, why?

he killed a child some towns over.

imported dope from el salvador.

raped a woman in houston.

they cut down a tire swing
used the rope to tie his hands behind
his back and stuffed the tire
filled with gasoline, around his neck
and lit it with a gas station cigar.

he screamed and struggled but finally
went to his knees
the flames still licking as he fell face forward.

when I blew my nose
the snot was black from his soot.
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About Chris Deal

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Chris Deal has published several poems and short stories around the internet, most recently A Crash Course in Divinity and Damnation in Nefarious Muse and four poems in Bicycle Review. He also regularly writes about literature at Creative Loafing. He has several stories and poems coming out in the months to come, more and will be publishing a collection of micro-stories through Brown Paper Publishing in early 2010.
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