Gun Shopping in a Pandemic

Luke Young


No masks required!
We mingled our breath into the air
Scented with silicone lubricant
Cardboard boxes and masculinity
Examining bolt action rifles
Feeling the grip of pistols
Rough on the hands but lighter than they looked
In a variety of sizes
All capable of flinging sliders
Even the pea-shooting pocket babies
Cute with two rounds in the chamber
The prices varied from an affordable two headed Benjamin
To the much more significant combat looking weapons requiring a solid Rutherford
Mat black and stacked in rows
As if expecting a highway roll call
Before the drones found them –
All in all
It was a day
Another day
Here in the heartland of America
Where drive through French fries won’t grow cold in the car
Before you’re armed and prepared
With a thousand rounds of
Radically Invasive Projectile
Tinkling softly in their boxes
In the back of your car
Climate controlled
Playing a song you can sing along to


Luke Young is an Indigenous American who grew up among southeast Asian war refugees in California and Washington State before being moved to Cambodia to live from the ages of five to seventeen. He’s worked and traveled all over the world before being forced by circumstance to move back to the United States in 2017 for a period of five years. His writings have been published in New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Cambodia, Thailand and the United States