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Tough Call

Dave Malone


When my father reffed 
high school football games, 
he kept a mental log
of epithets the fans yelled
and shared the best over Schlitz 
with his newspaper buddies
on our patio. It was mostly laughs 
except for the occasional telling 
after a six-pack
of the Bulldog rival game 
and a goal-line stand.
A revolver in the parking lot. 
My father's 20-20
may have gotten it wrong. 
It all happened so fast.
The beak of the ball.
The feather of the knee.
The nest's edge.


Poet and filmmaker Dave Malone lives in the Missouri Ozarks. His most recent book is You Know the Ones (Golden Antelope Press, 2017). His poems have appeared in San Pedro River Review, Plainsongs, and Midwest Review. He can be found on Instagram.


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