Tapping Out

by Jon Bennett


“Listen, Jessica,”
I told the property manager,
“that little guy that carves
Buddhas in 310,
fix his sink, OK?”
The Chinese wood carver
had been filling milk jugs
with tap water
in the communal bathroom
for 3 years
I knew he had crazy rent control
and was scared of bugging the landlord
but I was sick of it.
A week later I saw him
being carried down the stairs
on his son’s back,
his things piled in the street.
I would’ve asked
where he was going
but I don’t speak Mandarin
and really
I didn’t want to know.


Jon Bennett is a San Francisco poet. His work has appeared in 13 Myna Birds, The Blue Hour and Horror Sleaze Trash.

photo by Alessandro Piana Bianca