“Sleaze, on its Role in Mötley Crüe’s “Live Wire” by Daniel M. Shapiro

It’s too easy to call me
floor-level cocaine,
nagging whine
of an ambulance
trapped on the freeway.

I’m the makeup worn
by straight guys pretending
to make fun of gays but really
liking the look, a costume
that never finds a closet.

I’m the cowbell played
because it’s there.
I’m the menace
of power chords
read from a manual,

close enough not
to need another take.
Don’t mistake me
for the sports car.
I’m just a guy

who shouldn’t
be behind the wheel,
a personal driver away
from aging gracefully,
from natural causes.

Daniel M. Shapiro is the author of several poetry books and chapbooks, including How the
Potato Chip Was Invented, Heavy Metal Fairy Tales, and The Orange Menace. He is a special
education teacher who lives in Pittsburgh.

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