A Monopoly on Madness

-Audio Player-

Growing up poor
I never learned
the value of money.

We spent it
when we had it,

and we had it
we spent it…

My relationship
with dollar signs
closely that
of me and I

A big ol S for Self
cut right down the middle,

with each segment
becoming stranger
to the line.

My money plays high-stakes poker
with my anxiety and my fears

reminding me
it is my turn to roll the dice.

It is my turn
to run this fragile thimble
through the
monopoly of madness
I have created,

and I can no longer afford
hotel rent…


I’m paying income tax
from three turns ago.

I’ve been living off chance cards
and all the good ones are spent.

And I just had to have
Tennessee Avenue
because Orange
was my mother’s favorite color.

And let me tell you,

free parking
doesn’t last long enough
to catch your breath

and the house rules
have never been
in our favor…

You see,

I’ve always been praised
an intelligent man.

But the curse
of intelligence
is knowing
exactly how much
you can hurt yourself

and still survive.


was my self-harm.

I cut myself
with guilty lusts
and fifty-dollar bills

I cut myself
on admiration
just for thrills.

I cut myself
with nice suit jackets
and silver onyx rings

hoping to live
in your memories
as I bleed out
on the dance floor.

And well…

At the end of the night
we all must pay our tab.

And when the money runs out.

All that’s left.

Is everything you were running from,

and you can’t afford a cab.

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Published by John Onyx

A poet of the lost, the found, and the in-between. I’m interested in collaborating with photographers, musicians, and videographers on larger projects. Feel free to email me at me@johnonyx.com if interested!

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