Lunch Pail Blues and the Hot Lunch Rag


kindergarten days carrying my

Batman lunch pail and

swinging it around and around,

its red exterior resembling

a fireball

only to find when I opened it

that the boy wonder thermos

had leaked Diet Pepsi

everywhere, my sandwich

light brown and soggy,

my chips evaporated;


I switched to hot lunch,

drank chocolate milk

from a tiny brown carton

and dined on hamburgers

drowning in the peach cobbler

that drifted from its

spot on my Styrofoam

tray—I ate it all:

this gave me the strength

to cover the bathroom

ceilings in spitballs

with kids who did

not speak the same

language as me.


Kevin Ridgeway is from Southern California, where he resides in a shady bungalow with his girlfriend and their one-eyed cat. Recent work has appeared in Zygote in my Coffee, The Blue Hour, Regardless of Authority and The Idiom. His latest chapbook of poems, All the Rage, is now available from Electric Windmill Press.