Saturday, December 29, 2007

to be unfettered. transcendent.

i'll live alone in the forest
afternoons spent
tossing around in my bed
losing the hours

the rain
it comes
almost everyday now
the forest trees would take me in
and play keep away
from all the rain

the leaves above
they have there way
of keeping us dry
making us safe

who knows?
i could be forfeited in caverns
or find the path and walk away
away from the ghosts of legend.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Steaklatechip Cookies, Chapter One

Two pair passed through a broken alleyway, hardly wide enough to squeeze their moving van through, and stops at a wooden post lying on the ground. It was so embedded in the earth, one could suppose the original tree had fallen there.
Griffin and Sal make their way past hardwood floors and 1930’s architecture to their home in Shangri-La, embodied by a studio apartment in building E, 230 Whitecrest. Griffin fumbled to remove his smoking glove, juggling a cigarette searching through his pockets for the golden key that read 240 E. His steps echoed against the floors and flaking paint to as the two pair made their way up the expanse toward the door. Their room was on the second floor, above 140; a room inhabited by a man so fat it was said he could hardly make it through the door.
‘Good thing he dosent live above us’ Sal commented
The sea green door with golden lettering opened to bare walls; more open canvas. The girls would later suggest numerous colors. Sal put down his staircase and walked down the stairs back to the car to retrieve pieces of their new existance.
They soon found the winding staircase was slightly too small for the dresser; it would have to be taken apart, but not today. For now, it sits in the back of the car. A brown buick from the mid 80’s rolls into the adjacent parking spot. A couple that looked like they could’ve posed for the commercial when their car was new stepped out of the car, revealing take-out containers. Sal thought them to be Cantonese, but as he would later discover, they were skeletons from the thai restaurant a few blocks down 8th street toward the record store. The couple glanced at Griffin and Sal before looking down at the dirt and walking inside.
Sal lit up his 7th smoke of the day as Griffin went inside to pack. They went up the narrow staircase again and through the door to the left to the cobwebbed bedrooms. A wall open at both ends separates the kitchen from the living room. A couch slumbers against the far wall and the tv near the kitchen. Just then, whoever else walked in the door. The click of heels and clack of flats told of women. Tawny walks over to the couch and sits on griffin’s outstretched legs. Sal clambers up the staircase to Dawn, who leans against the doorframe, waiting for Sal’s embrace. A quick peck and Sal retreats to the bedroom near the bathroom to drop his bags. One cardboard box, followed by another. One contained Sal’s cds, in the other Griffin’s record collection. The DJ himself set up the stereo to the right of the couch.
‘dude, would you mind if we changed the sofa to the other side of the room?’ Sal asks.
‘hey man, I put it here because I don’t want the tube to be blaring next to my ear when im trying to get some sleep. These paper thin walls won’t hide anything.’ Griffin pushes against the kitchen wall, moving it nearly an inch and releasing bits of drywall over the grain of the floor.
‘It works better over here. You can see it when youre eating breakfast. Besides, toughen up buddy. Youre in for your share of noise,’

Thursday, December 20, 2007

To visit places where there are no hosts

Watch a breath
at night
moon-shot through air pure water
no matter
how cold it must be where
finding oneself at odds with
the night, doing what is
(absolutely) necessary evils;
smoke breath,
chalk breath,
talk less,
talk about what loves you,
talk like time stops
when you say "pause"
or when you kneel to pray
or lie to sleep
and lay where comfort
takes you by surprise
(one is frequently).
When lightbulb talks yellow aged newspapers, take
and turn it to love
or lost love.
Trap that breath on
your lips, those lips though lips
may be dry
(one is frequently)
and there you watch
the air pure water breath rest
and there you lay your head
in an unfamiliar bed
where word mumbled under
is then tossed over
and lost to the night.
Thank that man,
thank that lady;
they, so prepared to speak,
hold in their crowd
of dusk cloud
and say
"Time does not 'pause'
nor will it ever

Monday, December 17, 2007

Everything is as it seems

I’m going out tonight,
a zombie on the streets.
Decked in black jeans,
a sweatshirt,
and headband from nineteen ninety eight

I was eleven
back then.
I used to even ski!
And in these clothes
I will feast.

On passerbys.
Others will watch and think
we’re just pretending.
But, I won’t be kidding,
I will eat.

Motorists pull over
In an attempt to calm me.
A bite of them and I will be forgiven
in the name of Jesus. Amen.
My victims will experience martyrdom.

Be seated, sir, at the right hand of our lord.
I will be forgiven.
In the name of Jesus, I feast.
For I’m eating thee with regards of the spirit.
Welcome to my church.

Your body is my temple
and to this I pray.
Now say thirty Hail Marys
For now I eat.

A city full of sin,
Of gays,
And bars,
And junkies.
I won’t have trouble.

I will find my congregation
Ten Bloody Marys deep.
Thy will be medium rare,
On earth as it is at dinner,

I will eat

I will raze the trash bins
and pick out everything
behind maternity wards.
like a demon.

And I will be forgiven
and seated, with respect.
In my vicious martyrdom,
of which you’ll all be victims,
I am forgiven

My acts are justified
for I am legion.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

kicking water when nothing's a better feeling than anything

you swim in it till you drown
you breath in as she puts her hands around your neck
choking you till you cant feel it anymore
kicking water when nothing's a better feeling than anything
veins bulge and struggle to push blood through them
you wonder why they were ever there at all
and maybe theyre just lazy
and maybe theyve been beaten down
but I'm not breathin' with phantom all white and naked
and everythings just alright with me

Friday, December 7, 2007

For John Donne

"Never lose sight of his love."
His long beard is caked with dust
and dirt.
It smells of sweat, we both,
but it brushes against my cheek
as his dried lips
cracked from the sand-heavy wind
Brush against mine.
No miracle,
but warmth and strength.
His hands are hardened from
carpentry and magic
and they slide up my back
but he is short and they
barely reach my shoulders
I bend my head further.
His tongue tastes of gristle
and raw grains.
There is a sense of acceptance
in the movement of his lips
No miracle,
but human skin that sweats
the same warmth
and scent.
He has decided not to change my life.
His chin and nose are pronounced,
the nose rubs gently
against the flesh just under my eye-
sockets, eyes closed, I can see
when they open,
a short man, carpenter,
he smiles.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Upon awakening, i tell my dreams to someone else

you never expressed so much regret

the other times you left me.

time has never warranted this,

the lavender song has lost its time and scent.

i will grow a large beard

and rough you up

to forget my childish ways.

i have learned to isolate my fantasies.


you think you can hammer out

your indiscretions on an anvil of pulp.

let me have time to lick my wounds

like the god that i am.


it’s comforting when she says,

“you can’t like me as much as i like you.”

in my insecurity, i know it’s true.

it’s cold and the gas won’t be turned on

for another week. she was right,'

this bed can’t be slept in alone.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

ambiguous symphony

cannonballs but in the abstract;
violins linger as though
walking through a
city of bohemian beggars.
rivaling renditioners
of beethoven compete for your money
from opposite sides of the street.
the notes juxtapose to perform the most precise beauty
ever born of trifling rivalries
and you are haunted by an irreplecable song for the next three days.
a cannonball tears through
your car stereo in rush hour traffic,
it flies down the lane two more miles before
it comes to a stop.
somehow, everyone has been waiting for this to happen.
somewhere in the atlantic,
fourty tons and fifteen months of construction
become the blip on the radar screen
that is no longer blip-ing.
it reminds you of
being spanked to tears as a child upon misbehaving,
of being put in your place only yours lacked the finality.
seconds before an ocean wave
that is really a schizophrenic mountain
screams all kinds of nihilism at you
you realize that the stars
are very pronounced and numerous
in the middle of the ocean at night.
cannonballs fly but in the abstract,
there are violins and stars, though they drown too;
the ocean is large.
you too with ambiguity envy such a death.
pure, unrestrained and final.
the cars ahead of you are moving again.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

No epic so epic

There was a snowfall deep
and quiet in November
when the heat was still such
that snow felt soft to the touch.
When the red-haired girl was,
when the blue-eyed was not,
innocent, but for grey
streaks against the snow-
clouds against the sky-
smoke against young lungs:
they used to cough so much.

Black rubber tar tires
worn through, sliding in snow.
Winter splattered with salt stains
and dirt-caked shoes worn thin;
dear then but not worn again.
Then, when drink was always gin,
burning pine needles,
great mouthfuls of fire,
charred christmas tree guts:
they fought back so much.

Basement party epiphanies:
"Graham, the Bowie Boy who kissed me,
the girls would look on and laugh,
he used to say he tasted honey."
Lips were never that sweet,
soft, yes, and warm, but
smoke black and cracked,
bleeding gums and lips,
dry from electric heat:
they used to know so much.

Friday, November 30, 2007

a father and the sun.

when i awake
i see the morning entirely
the mountains are cold
but they'll make this day grow
it will flow up from the ground
with the sunrise

i am a father to the newborn sky
and we will rise together like a family

and when the day is done
i'll die

then cleanse myself
in the mornings foggy eyes

One Great City

when smoke retreats to beautiful fair skin
what is left is whats within
wish it was the summer's daze
but there is only a winter haze
which follows me to death's bedside
and asks the question, 'whats inside?'

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


There was a freezing wind along the Oregon coast and the birds rested there
There in the saturated coastal air.
Two boys sat on logs near the water
And played songs to summon tsunamis
To crush the town that has kept them
Strumming songs about the road.
They sang for waves to send them floating
Across the continent, where they can sing
First for the ocean, then the sunflowers,
The tornadoes, the hurricane and finally
The apple orchards.
There the boys sit,
Playing their tsunami songs
Summoning the end of their stay
On the beach at Newport Bay.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


A forked path, divergent in a wood.
one, a landscape of wooden men
who love to build fires from their arms
burning the inside first, then the out
my path is birch, all bark and no bite
burning bright and quick
and leaves little left for the beefeater to warm himself
(warmth is what you need when you live only in time)
Alas, eternity has its price
for I have taken the high(er) path
and it has made all the difference

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Prophylactics Keep Us Clean

After daylight savings time
but before the first snowfall
night doesn’t last
so long as we’re up for it,
huddled close.

And life isn’t that bad
when spent in twin sized beds
with naked strangers. Sober
(“So long as your okay with it”) one
asks to hold my hand.

A whole season comes and ends
and said stranger becomes a friend
as a confusing haze dawns a question,
“So long as we’re both alone....”
A squalid love is formed.

And a year later, after I meet her family
I can’t stop seeing her mother while
she's on her back and coming hard.
“So long as you’re cool with it,” I ask
if she can start to straighten her hair

But our once pleasurable sex turns
vanilla at best and reaps sorrowful
results huddled close
(“So long as we work for it”) we agree,
something needs to change.

And then nothing begins to make sense.
And mascara stains twin sized beds.
And what ever happened to true romance?
“So long as we’re both upset,” she starts
and confesses she's three months pregnant.

How can it not?

After "Nothing changes, I suppose"
When he left to walk
into that oak door,
he left it half open
as if to welcome the rest of us
into the roomy comfort
of pictures, no regrets,
no age, no tired eyes,
no hangover mornings,
no embarrassing drunks.

We took note of the impact
face up, rain down
it was stupid
and stubborn
and selfish, right?

The night after we
tapped his forehead with
crucifix and sang
a couple of down-tempo songs
(echoing in the vaulted ceilings),
we armed ourselves
with strength in numbers
and drank, like Mitch had
that morning
before the funeral.

He went home early
and frequently
I think he was the only
one that really
got it.

Saturday, November 17, 2007


I am my own god
and therefore the only truth.
So, here it seems as though
the holy life is one alone.
I look up to
the late fall sky
(the mirrored pond
placid now, rests
among the buildings high)
and see my face
smile to the sky-
as-sea, -as-mirror
or -as-clouds.
A window bright
with sun and dust
reflects my God as
pure and just
and right.
The holiest nights I am alone
with saints: appendages all my own,
and light a candle- vigil's smoke
now darkens holy Narcissus' home.

Friday, November 16, 2007

For My Kids

I drink coffee from a cup I found in the dumpster behind my apartment. It’s black and reads, “Chicago” in messy block lettering. I look at the skyline etched in gold below its brim. I look at it and think, “that is where I live.”

I found this zip file on the internet. I got it from a website that gets off on thinking it’s important. That it creates 90% of the humor transmitted wirelessly to pixilated screens and HTML pages. It is trash and thrives on the immediate attention given to people who place coded images immediately on the web. But, still I found this file, and still I downloaded it.

I drink coffee from a cup I found in the dumpster behind my apartment. I sip, tongue the hot liquid, sigh and grin. I whisper to myself, “this is where I live.”

Fifteen hundred pictures, taken by tattooed and pierce laden women. In front of bed and bathroom mirrors, they’ve hidden themselves discretely in a folder titled, “Scene Girls 15.” But I didn’t name them. Some kid on the interweb did.

And I looked at all of them. Fifteen hundred self-modeled poses. They made me feel sick. So I looked at them again and watched as fifteen hundred women looked through me and drooled at their own sordid reflections.

I drink coffee from a cup I found in the dumpster behind the building where I live. I get too hot. I move outside and sip and lose myself in an airplane circling the cities grid. Eventually it lands, and I imagine it a ship. I’m on it, sailing across Lake Michigan

Earlier today I tried to masturbate. Twice in bed, I dreamt of old girlfriends. Then three times in front of a computer screen. But the internet offered nothing and left me feeling empty and now I think about the fifteen hundred women oblivious to the fact that I know their bodies. That I’ve thought only of them as human between gasps and heavy breathing.

I drink coffee from a cup I found in a dumpster behind my apartment. After I exhale into the steam that rises from its moist, obsidian brim, I try not to think about the world in which I live.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Labor Tale

On days like that in July the air was so thick with water that it would collect on the brows of the landscaping workers along the side of the road. The buses rattled by them, throwing the musk of diesel into their already polluted pores.
'This fucking rain better come soon." Tom creeped out of the side of his mouth, carefuly not to make it seem to the foreman as though he was complaining.
The work came day to day, which was great for his usual routine: work for enough time to get the money to drink for a few days, and so on.
If you listened closely you could hear the tree's weep. Above their low weep, the grass (dry to its roots) was screaming. With every step across the dry tinder, the shrill cries of a hundred blades of grass begged for the water to leave the air and permeate the ground.
The other men didn't speak, most didn't even speak English, though Tom could sense a sincere distaste for his American work ethic. There were no union breaks to speak of, but Tom took them anyway.
Miguel, who spoke few words in English, drew his shovel from the dry, sandy soil and tapped Tom on the shoulder. He then used it to motion in the direction of the wide grey clouds in an imposing stance in the distance. It may as well have been a free meal or a bottle of gin. Tom was ecstatic.
Upon seeing the clouds he threw his mound of dirt and dried grass into the pile that had been accumulating all day. He tucked his cheap yellow hard hat under his arm.
"Fuck yeah, boys!" Tom turned, only to hear the foreman shout back even louder.
"See those clouds?" His voice was stern and masculine, but there were wavers of insecurity that led Tom to believe the foreman wasn't cut out for massive union gigs. "Double time! We have to lay this sod before that rain comes."
Tom's hopes dropped as a collective groan crept through the group like a classroom full of eighth graders.
"Too dry..." Miguel said under his breath. Tom nodded but accepted the orders regardless of the weather. The parched earth and Tom both needed piles of green.
The men continued to gather sweat, occasionally stopping to sip from water bottles or wet their hair at a hose. It didn't seem to do much; the humidity was so thick in the air that it congealed the water in thick beads to their hair and necks.
After digging out the necessary three inches of topsoil, they rolled out the sod. The freshly harvested grass was healthy and cool. The deep green rectangles laid sharply contrasting the yellow rags of brush that surrounded them. Tom could feel the soil under the sod heating and drying.
At five o'clock the foreman handed out the pay in cash. Ten fucking dollars an hour, Tom was recalculating the day's work as he thought:
I need a real fucking job.
He knew that he would never work at a "real" job, the last two spot he had he burned up the money on drinking and eventually got fired. He needed it day to day, helped him realize how little he could spend when he went to the bars. He always got enough money to buy cold beer after a hard day's work.
So, Tom took his eight-five dollars and sat on the curb at the bus stop. It usually took him about twenty five minutes to catch the bus after quitting time. He lit a cigarette and took in a drag. The feeling was nothing new, he was tiring of smoking, and in this heat it killed his lungs. A co-worker sat next to Tom.
"This fucking heat, huh?" The man took a handkerchief from his pocket and wiped his brow. "Name's Danny, yours?"
"Tom, smoke?" Tom held out his pack hesitantly, hoping Danny would take a cigarette and stop talking about the weather.
"Don't usually, but today was a hell of a day." Danny grabbed a smoke and lit it up. He had a southern twang in his voice, but something about his demeanor was distant from the day labor he was subjecting himself to. It sounded like he had seen the light and turned back.
"As long as the work keeps coming." Tom turned the conversation to labor, the more he thought about the weather the more he needed a drink.
"No way in hell that sod is going to take." Danny seemed sure.
"I don't know, crack a couple of inches down and that soil isn't so bad." Tom hoped the work he did over the course of the day wasn't for nothing.
"I guess we'll see in a couple of days." Danny stood and extinguished his cigarette against a telephone pole.
"I guess so." Tom responded slowly as he saw the 3 bus in the distance. He picked up his bag and flicked his cigarette into the brush.
All those clouds, he though, and not a fucking drop of rain. Tom boarded the bus and fell asleep when he got home. He woke up again at nine and the night was damp and dark. He hopped on the three to head back across town to the bar.
As the bus rolled past the landscaping that Tom had worked on all day, he noticed a group of firefighters putting out the last embers of a fire. A light from the fire truck shined down on the site. Patches of black had spread throughout the roadside. The sod was gone. The soil was scorched. The grass and trees were put out of their misery.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

An eternity spent in ceilings

Where I go from where I am
is fate enough for Fortuna’s sake.
I'm presently vexed by a wych elm
that’s grown and grown and grown.

Seeds fallen from serated vines
find solace in dreams that
see cloven branches transformed
into the visage of ancient ladies.

With wings not grace.
No goddess or deity,
succubi that hunger,
feeding while I’m asleep.

Mayhap these seeds sown
with help from a spring breeze
infiltrate the ranks
of friends. My family.

And in a forest of golden strands
once bright, now brown, they'll
lay blinded inside a plumage of
twigs and cracked eggs of insecurity.

Only an arbalester's gaze
can find me an escape.
A victim of lovelorn history.
A cockatrices fabled treat.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Nothing changes, I suppose

Even at your funeral
I didn’t say goodbye.
How could I with you
bloated like when you
woke up hung over.

Back then, with beer stains
on your white (now black)
polished shoes, we’d sing
Westerberg’s "Portland" till
our faces turned blue.

I had never seen a dead
body before. You’d laugh,
I had to hold someone’s hand
to keep from loosing it
when I looked upon yours.

You don’t know this,
but your best friend
did your hair. It looked
good and he didn’t want to
see you,

I hope you know. After
you did it, he didn’t want
to remember you forever
hanging. Or how I do. Blue,
pale. October cold.

He'll still remembers you. Running his hands through your hair.
He'll still remembers making you look great, like all those times before.

And I took distance for granted.
And talked about your problem
behind your back when
I should have told you upfront,
like a man.

Would it have saved your parents
sleepless nights? With you, it’s
unlikely, but at least your friends would
still remember the vivacity in
your laugh.

After all, you left people thinking
you were into meth. Funny, I keep
telling myself that you were stronger
than that. But you were an idiot
and obnoxious when drunk.

So now, after glum precessions
and cumbersome clouds of regret,
I’ll talk about you being an idiot in
death. For that is how I cope with you
not here. You dead.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Sonnet I+II

We have no tragedy or plague
to draw sympathy for our love,
or laws that speak in sentence vague
to keep a distant feeling of

cruel heartbreak kept at length of arm.
I thought the concept simple just
to love without unfaithful lust,
but men and women keep their charm

inside the halls of lusty mind
for heart breaks swift in front of eyes.
Where eyes are lifted to a breast
or lip or hip or head at rest

Allow me sanctuary's clear.
The mind is romance, love is here.

The color is clearer at night,
drastically affected by light
with match's flame or a flashlight
deepest hues of green, yellow shine.

That reflection is bouncing off
the dullest wood and dampest dirt
creates a temporary wall
beams shoot light through the barrier.

It's never truly night or day
Nor is it ever time or year.
Each lovely stage of sun and moon
as beautiful or as serene.

In every night the path is clear
by moon we meet and love is here.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Repetition’s Song

On a porch, a breeze reads
the book in my hands
faster than I ever have.
Digesting words as if they
were leaves, strewn about
a graveyard.
Like specters from
fairytale lands.

The pages move faster,
reminding me of the things
hidden in my head.
Things I don’t like
to touch on awake, or
sober, during daylight.

Upon my bed I lay
defeated from 14 hour
tirades of words and work
and people staring as I
walk by. Asleep, I’m
no longer on my continent.

A panther on its hind legs
playing fisticuffs
as I try to land a punch.

Familiar house on a
race track
circling around a zoo

Afflicted humans waiting
for me to escape
quarantine: A late lunch.

Preternatural visions of
werewolves in
catacombs clawing off boots

Airships dipping in between
imaginary buildings
of cyclopean size

and familiar beauty
that'll last, unending
until my physical demise.

As a breeze reads my finger tips,
my mind jogs through people
I've never seen in places
that don't exist. Their names
I know not, but what of it?
We're all here together to
love and touch and remember
who to forget when we wake up

Friday, October 19, 2007


no troubles
on mind should
ever worry ya.

drink a glass
tell a lil’ lie.

in yer teeth
they’ll know truth.

least thought’ll
speak something,
hope’s sake.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

hey jude

Watching the screen flicker
the world is more beautiful when
there are lights behind it.
So soon I feel ugly
tired of my own freedom.
Suddenly, to be capable
of anything
and to be on pursuit again is
Remember when
drinking was an occasion and
a kiss was social suicide?

It's hard to find life satisfying when you're sure that
the world is a big Beatles song;
it's embarrassed and exploited,
but mostly misguided and misplaced.
Somewhere in that tune
there's a mind that intended greatness
but the rest just dropped mud on the mirror.

Sunday, October 7, 2007


these days you sink wherever you can
except around me, firm in the sentiment that
we should all get away from each other
while it will still hurt, like a band-aid
that's been on just long enough to
rip out some of your leg hairs
upon removal, and promptly be thrown
into the garbage;
otherwise, without your knowledge,
it slides off into a middle of a pool,
picked up later all soggy
by some disgusted passerby.
we all spend a certain amount of time
soggy, floating underwater, but not quite
sunk deep enough to reach solid tile.
you keep me floating
above the bottom, but not quite
standing straight, and i do the same for you,
so we do not entirely sink but neither
are our heads above water and
we do not entirely breathe.
because of this my favorite days
are those when things are calm
as band-aids floating in the empty pool
can not be greeted with disgust when there are no swimmers,
and as i firmly close my eyes and feel
the hair around my head moving subtly with
the minute currents of stagnant bodies of water.
submerged, i can appreciate the solitude
that comes with feeling everywhere on your body
the consistent texture of water,
a calm sense of nothingness,
despite my vague awareness that you,
somewhere, are doing something to prevent me
from drowning,
or the sense that one day i will
have to pick myself out of here as
the responsible swimmer undergoes
the disgust of throwing away the soggy band-aid
so that no one else will have to encounter it.
we should all get away from each other
while it will still hurt, you insist.
when band-aids in pools slip off without notice
they sit so stagnant and become
a burden for the responsible swimmer,
losing a band-aid in a pool
means nothing to the person who needed it,
and who should therefore deal with it.
to rip out a few of your leg hairs
and expose not-quite-healed cuts right by
your knee may not be pleasurable
but sometimes it is necessary
to feel pain rather than to feel nothing.

Monday, September 24, 2007

We are the Future Eaters

With deft precision we eat our future
like daisycutter bombs to the vietnamese canopy
incinerating the leaflets to begin a new winter
one where all is clean
and white
and void of human tracks
except my own dirty boots
which I cannot escape from

Friday, August 24, 2007

Hallucinogenic Manifesto

Some distorted, spiritually-driven consciousness has clouded the minds of the army of marching teens and twenty-somethings. Rewarded with space and lost in time the clouded march smells like spirits and smoke. Their eyes look past the goal. The goal is unattainable, their true driving force is the expansive fields and forests that make the cities we live in (so bustling and crowded) seem like wastelands of empty verse.

No single person has been so motivated to see the world for what it's not. No group of eager learners so desperately avoid learning what the generations before them know from years of rote memorization. Their science, our science, is to discover the undiscoverable, conceivably- to do the impossible without ever truly making it possible.

So with a history of psychedelic irrationality and knee-jerk epiphany, the hordes of tripping teenagers hold their pipe bags tightly enough to ignore the social injustice that we are so sure we could cure with a few grams of grass and a shot of whiskey.

Can we march on the capitol steps for hallucinations' sake?
Is it fathomable to take our familiarity with the unusual and use it toward a tangible good?

Yes, absolutely yes.

The unusual is not only healthy, it absolutely necessary. The proselytizing of the greatest generation, the moral bankruptcy of the baby booming generation (in the sense that it is perfectly moral to say one thing and act on another) has left us with no other options than to ignore responsibility and reality in lieu of the most righteous nirvana, the more responsible apathy: creativity and the high.

No chemical can reproduce our passion for expansion. The learning we yearn for is a haze of metaphysical theories. Our yearning is born as the inquisitive sensitivity for all beliefs other than the one that rules in this day: the worship of the mighty dollar.

It is our right to see history as a bad omen for the future. Where will the high go? Has a resurgence of free-love manifested only sleaze and empty consciousness? No one man, not one community, not one species can determine the future in a sense of specific events. Fueling even more the feeling that we, malleable wisps of purplish smoke in a cloudless and buildingless skyline of opportunity, can make ourselves by the morals and mores that we see necessary for a society in which the individual can witness his resurrection only to become earthly with the next conversation or cigarette or dimebag. We have relaxed ourselves into a new planar reality, one that promises to answer the questions that none have answered before without regards to whether or not the answer can exist in the cold modern reality (with its confining boundaries that we know the human mind is more than capable of escaping).

Sunday, August 12, 2007

barely twenty and lost the party

getting worse at drinking
getting better at fucking


I'll have to quit drinking
I'm always the one who falls

Friday, August 3, 2007

selfish and foolish

i'm no suicide
too much of a narcissist
for such an ugly way to go
just let my skin wrinkle
so that by the time I realize
my body is worthless
my mind will be worth the time
and attention
and care
of children and grandchildren
that will believe I am wise
and experienced
even if I've been foolish
for as long as I can remember.

Thursday, July 26, 2007


california i'm
lost in the valley
of your associations.
you appeared snapshotted
on a postcard from a girl i used to love
and all the passion
that i couldn't associate with her
across so many states
fell onto you.

you're a mess;
haight-ashbury, chinatown
the gold rush and mountains,
i've never met you
but your hair would be frazzled
and falling out.

you've been
misinterpreted thirty three hundred times
and you don't care anymore.
its a zoo out there you say
and laugh as an earthquake
kills the last two panda bears
and breaks your right leg.
you've got a mighty nihilism
through all that peace love and profiteering.

that girl i knew
she was beautiful
and she never knew what to believe.
she tried to be some
contemporary sort of hippie, and had once
cheered for the 49'ers in the
superbowl or something similar
watching the television with her father
because it gave her an excuse to be near him.

California she'll look like you one day.

i've zoomed through
about thirty-three hundred ideas a second and
i've met you, California
through a beautiful crystal
of indirect connotation
out of love, i ask you one thing;
don't let her become you.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Postcard from Naples

grass rigid and unfamiliar
waves in microcosms of palm flows above
riding the smoke which curls out my mouth
to perfect lawns and streets too empty to enjoy them
a cough breeds parasitic caution
(yet alltogether unnecessary)
remains unflourishing when the sicle touches my brain
and I still don't care
I yearn to leave this cage
where I will know no bounds
leaving no distance between us
as my being curls out your mouth
to wispy trees and roads
now, as Ive found out, full as the wind

For Alex and a woman named Squidkid

A friend of mine has a hernia the size of a Rubrics Cube.
Fifteen minutes and he pushes his small intestine in.
He can’t pee without thinking about it.
It makes me nervous just thinking about him.

A girl friend told me that this is all chauvinistic.
“Well…” she says bitterly, but I’m not going to correct it,
“We all lie,” I tell her, as if I have multiple literary friends.
She rolls her eyes. That’s when I know she understands.

A something something comma big thing period
Everyone knows that there is only one way to drone...
I continue with, “Did you know…”
I retell a story I read on CNN

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Because I Can, Man.

Oh, and I'm on Vacation.

So things have changed and I can see it.
Like leaves or something cliché

In the city, feelings and things
They come together.

For like, “Real."

I can see by the face you made that I’ve got it right.
Yeah, I can see that. I’m feeling it right now. Captivating

Teeth like reeds on a sea-green lake. Obscure.

Heaves. Heaving a something or other into a pile high of
Dirt filled ravines. It's a stretch, but I think I nailed it.
Coffins deep down like up in buildings packed three
By twelve

Grape it.
Ha, grab it you idiot.

Leaves. Tangible.
Like human beings?

Desire. Delirium/Delight,


Destruction and

I got it!

Like waiting to take a leak in a public restroom.
Someone turn the blowers on. Good god,
Someone run the faucets-What is this?

“We’re all trying to pee! so quiet!”

Alright, rock and roll all night.
Staying in. Drinking. Feeling mindsets.

Talking. Something like socializing.
A rare occurrence, specially on the weekends

By the way, are you going to catch me?
I'm riding way dirty.

Friday, July 6, 2007

it's weird.
treating every moment
as if it were your last.

i can't imagine
being here
without you.
and your quirks.
all your habits.
it makes me sick.

i was looking at
a book of pictures
the other day.

i was on your shoulders.
you made me laugh.
i fell asleep
resting on your head.

we walked
around the lake
while glutons passed.

"he's asleep,"
they would say.

you still love
telling that story.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007


Do you remember what it’s like to believe in someone?
To really think that you’ve got a good thing going?
And then it hits you bluntly, you’ve missed
Good friends on weekends and countless hours of sleep.

I know how it feels to really believe in someone.
To think that I’ve got a good thing going
Only to have it blow up in my Face-
Book…. Welcome to the information age.

My mother knows what it’s like to really believe in some things.
Catholic priests caught her with fishnets when she was only
Fourteen. Now I go to church with her on holidays.
I think about the Virgin Mary.

Monday, July 2, 2007


A hiss. Something about a party resonates through his thoughts.
A woman. Today she’ll board a plane bound for -----.
A café that is musky and smells of sweat stained sheets.

Of all things in the 21st century, he dotes on the fact that he’s never going to see her again. A party last night for one of his friends still bleeds through the pores of his skin. Last night, a new bar opened. Last night, an old one shut down. He thinks about her three month trip to ----. She’ll be back in October. He hopes that he’ll forget about her by then.

A phone call interrupts day-dreaming. In response, he breathes out a hiss that sounds like a b-movie bombing. Hanging up, he mutters something bleak and continues to stare at a dull laptop computer screen. He’s lost in himself. He doesn’t notice a woman walking past him. Long hair. Small hands. She’s on the way to the airport to catch a flight that leaves at three.

He doesn’t see her as she walks down the street.

“Falling in love,” he whispers, “with the concept of a woman.” He doesn’t sound so sure of himself. He stares deeper into the screen.

A block down and she just checked her missed calls. Three from a man who wanted nothing more than to lay next to her in bed. She’s apprehensive. She deletes old text messages from him. A shiver strolls through the street. A block down and screaming, he feels its presence. He decides to pack up his belongings and leave.

“Feelings are trivial things,” reads a slogan etched into one of the café’s wooden tables. He thinks about how someone must have scratched it in with a black ballpoint pen.

And then a credit card is charged and then he heads for the street and then he’s cautiously sipping at a recently concocted latte. North of him stands a woman in a sleek black summer dress. She reminds him that someone somewhere said black was "in" this season.

"None the less, an otherwise listless silhouette in a summer dress," and turns his back. He proceeds south on the street but again, a cold shiver flushes over him…

“The warmth of a woman,” he sighs and thinks about one.
A block down, a lady hails a cab. In it, she passes a familiar looking stranger. She squints. She tells the drive to take her to the airport. Then she reveals that she is going to -----.

She's already forgotten about the man on the street.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Whiskeydrunk sex and Jesus Christ.

She turns to me slowly, those eyes locked in a dead stare. I need this, I want this and she does too. This is a declaration of affection, the feverish grasp of youthful abandonment. With a final methodical gaze at her face I kiss her, using my thumb and forefinger to hold her soft chin and hollow cheek in place. We sit in a room full of those we know. The host left twenty minutes ago and everyone is fighting over the last bits of sanity. She and I rise.

Without deliberation we sneak into a guest bedroom, the lights are on and the bed is small. We stand, kissing, embraced and locked in a moment of pure light. I need this, I want this and she's begging for it. The pink rush runs through my body like a strong drink, quickly erasing the traces of trepidation that may have remained. A disruption, an occurrence, a change of scenery.

A guitar case with a Jesus sticker. A twin bed with a white bar frame. Knowing the blocking for this scene I unbutton my shirt, she her pants. Soon following the script, we breathe frantic and interrupted in a whirlwind of clothes and flesh. She always hated that word. The lights went off, she was nude, I with a shirt on, slowly removing it, without a sense of direction in the blackened room. I flip the lights on once more, for footing.

I see her body, Christ she is beautiful. Her legs lay crossed, skin smooth and even. Her breasts sit, supported somewhat by her left arm, which holds up her head. I look down at myself, my stomach hangs over the elastic band of my underwear. My skin looks tired and riddled with moles and red spots.

I turn the lights off again and climb onto the bed. We kiss again, deep and passionate, her skin brushing the disgusting hair sprouting on my chest. Without any real preparation I enter her and she moans, I exhale deeply in agreement.

This condom is made of tar, I swear.

The drinks begin to spin my head.

I kiss her continually, hoping that something would redeem this slowly fading encounter. Her breath brushes against my left ear.


I pull out. I needed this, I wanted this, and like times before I let her down. After it all there was nothing to be spoken of but a shaken boy trying to carve his name into the stone walls of sexuality. She seemed impressed that I got it up at all. My cigarette keeps a sense of reality, my ego continually kicking me where it counts.

This is manhood.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Something Silly

I’ve learned a lesson from making out with lesbians.
They’re not straight which makes them quite rough.
Envision a ridge on a tooth. They'll treat a
pair of testicles like they have nothing to lose.

Friday, June 15, 2007

mostly interpretation

darling you are no more than precrafted sounds
you are goo goo and gaa gaa two years later
limited by the latin alphabet and an online baby-name website.
you are about fourty years of vicarious living
tacked on to the end of your parents' lives
encompassed by speculation
about fifteen seconds prior to the exact moment of their deaths
finally settled in your perception
by a predetermined resolution to never be your mother
a hint of resentment,
and lung cancer thats been waiting for you
since you started smoking at the age of fifteen.
you speak in gobbledegook only
its the familiar sort.
your ideas are preestablished
a spinning wheel in your head, you find the feeling
that matches your situation and express it
in a string of harsh staccato noises.
everyone understands them,
with various interpretations.

somewhere there is a man writing in permanent marker
an absolutely unbiased account of the entirety of human history
with no room for interpretation.

feel absolutely uninhibited;
his wrist is frequently sore,
he's several thousand years behind
and has no time to account for
what's only perception.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007


I laid beside
a woman
who had no interest in my body
to have her touch my flesh
or for me to touch her's.

I laid beside
a lesbian
with soft blue eyes
short brown hair
and men's clothing.

I laid inside
my own addictions
a drink every day
a few drinks every day
a half a pack of cigarettes.

I laid inside
my body
folds of skin that ought not be there
patches of hair on my back
fat on my stomach
from a twenty-beer sunday.

Who is validated?
Who is truly happy?
The old.

The young must look
as though they don't realize
their bodies will deteriorate

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Endless Boogie

The wildest things will happen to you
when you begin to open up
to people you know nothing about.

Tell the man sitting next to you
eating alone at three in the afternoon in the park
in a pink shirt and houndstooth sport coat
about your ménage à trois.

Let the crustpunk throwing you glares
from across the coffee shop
how much you paid for gasoline last week
and how it makes you want to
buy a gun
and drive cross-country
robbing convenience stores and shooting road signs
with Woody Guthrie as your wingman,
flying on LSD, and
drinking to feel warm.

When a customer approaches you with a question
stop them
and begin to point out all the co-workers you would sleep with.

The more things in life you regret, the more you've tried.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

A Decadent Windigo in Heat

A good friend of mine tells me not to worry about my over-active sexual imagination.

“You’re a fine young man with a healthy libido," he tells me.

I find solace in his words when I can’t stop thinking about the girl in the train seat next to me naked. What does her skin feel like bare against mine? Or her breast on my back as she wraps her arms around me like wandering ivy?

People sometimes say my apartment is cold.
"Touch the walls. Do you feel that?” I ask.
“That’s plaster.” I tell them

No one really gets the joke.

After I shower and before I shave, I don’t prepare my razor because it’s been done while the showerhead ran steam to prepare my skin for the city-tap’s wake. The blade is heavy. My father picked it up for me on my twentieth birthday.

I sat naked in front of the cheap Target mirror that leaned up against the bedrooms east wall. Behind, a woman took control as she nursed an erection damn close to expulsion. Naked and watching, I never thought myself to be much of a voyeur. But considering the circumstance (a weeks worth of pent up morning woods), I permittied myself to gaze upon her pirouetting body as she wrapped two serpentine legs around my waist.

I shave with two blades that sing Gregorian verse as I drag them across my face. Seven sleek strokes. Save the throat’s apple for when it’s less slick. It’s rather slippery when wet and succumbs to cuts upon cuts due to hasty mistakes. I move up then to my right cheek, drawing it downward, but not too far without first rinsing in the sink.

Along the grain, two to three inches, water to rinse, shake off, repeat.

Before we undressed, I asked her if she’d lay on my back. She did and I got to getting her off. Before we came, she reminded me not to tell anyone.

“Our secret is safe.”

Thusly, my roommate was disappointed to hear that we didn’t go all the way. After all, semen only leaves stains on a stomach unlike what a bruise does to the pale white of a leg.

The upper lip is one of my favorite places to shave. The stubble is strong, allowing me indulge in the gap below my nostrils. Usually, I move clockwise across the face. Right to left, leaving the chin for last. I always cut myself right before the weekend. Apprehensive on Thursdays, waiting for a day’s worth of class to be done. I scraped my chin this Thursday. The cut wasn’t deep enough to bother, but the blood tasted great as I washed the white lather from my face.

She bit me on the arm and like a vulture, I circled imaginary lines onto the inside of her legs. She touched the tips of my fingers to every strand of her hair as I engrossed my nose in the comfort of her smooth sultry feminine scent.

Sometimes I forget her taste and then sometimes I wake up from a dream, satisfied with the thought of her long muscled embrace.

Warm water washes the blood away from my face as the taste of a foundry begins to displace a slight suggestion of crimson. Of Iron and tin melted down into one dark liquid.
"I taste outstanding," I think.

Naked and lovely, I think of all the things I can do with her breasts. So I touch and rub them, and long for a time when I can look back at this moment, telling myself that everything was okay. And with eyes closed, she moans. Trying not to think about the man who holds her genuine feelings.

I taste like a machine

For her, “What the fuck is wrong with me?” becomes the evening’s reoccurring phrase.

So we switch positions. She sits up and I'm upside down. While I'm looking at the scratched wooden floor, she stumbles, falling shoulder first into the nearby bedside wall.

“Oh god! that’s cold.”

Only this time, I don’t have to explain the joke.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Manifest Destiny

Call in the Apaches
This country is hungry

For defacing sovereignty
And indigenous ancestry
Labeling war machines
With Native American majesty

Beckon the burning Tomahawks
Navigate Navaho infantry
Contact the Comanche fighter jet
And seek out Seminole ATVs.

Technology will scalp the enemy
Tradition razed their ranks
Terror leads our nation’s brave
Onto big and better things

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Let's Conquer Everything

Blood from veins atop blue dead bodies.
Crime scenes investigate what the revolver forgot to say

Federal employees with pension plans mop
sidewalks clean. Their 401k as Kevlar against societal decay

Disease runs rampant in distant African cities
America jokes about it through r-rated zombie movies,

Man without boundaries looks to space for consoling,
Forgetting past and present whilst scientists study the destruction
of their planet. In unison they sing with voices drunk on public funding

“Why neglect one paradise when there’s enough time to wreck many?”

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

play dead

there's something about looking into every person's eyes and wondering if it's going to be the last time you'll ever see them that really fucks with you. i look at pictures of people that i love on our final days together and it nearly makes me sick how happy we seem. do i really have a good reason? is this the best thing for me? onwards and upwards.

more than anything else i hate this feeling. this feeling of having an endpoint. suddenly every awkward moment i've had and every time i've questioned whether or not these are the people that i really want to be defining myself by are all coming back to bite me. maybe these things take time. maybe i'm stuck in the past. offwards and downwards?

i don't think i'll ever know for sure.

i'm hoping that, forty years from now, i'll look back on everything i've gone through and think that maybe i'll be thankful that things worked out in the way that they did. that maybe this is just a learning experience and that this is all for the "greater good" whatever the fuck that means. saying goodbye and meaning it is one of the most gut-wrenching things a person can do, and the idea that this really might be the last time i see a certain person completely throws me for a loop. i dont' want certain things to end. i want everyone to coexist and be happy but there's no way that can happen in an environment like this. i'm in need of a change of scenery when everything that i've grown accostomed to is so beautiful.

i dont' know what exactly kills me so much about this entire situation. maybe it's the fact that i feel like i'm metaphorically sitting on my hands while the entire world passes me by. that i'm stuck in the past. that i'm trapped in this mindset that was atmittedly great but obviously time to pass. that i feel like i'm going in so many directions all at once it's hard to know which one is the enlightened path and which one will lead to dissapointment.

i suppose everyone goes through something like this.

maybe i just thought it would never really happen to me.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Paint splatter on spruce trees

There is a blue sky
reflecting in the eyes of a hornet
with layers of iridescent color
that man's eye can only
begin to see.

There is a wide tree
with roots at the base that
burrow further into the ground
than any one man can dig.

There is a true love
that rises every morning
bright and alive
affectionate and caring
that ceases to shine only when
man's eyes are too heavy to appreciate
its light.

Monday, April 30, 2007

a long life, a balanced diet

on a rainy day i saw
disquieting mountaintops grumbling something
to my stomach about mortality.
"if i was going to live forever
i wouldn't smoke cigarettes,"
you explained, sick in bed
with strep throat and oatmeal. it
reminded me of my mother who
had taught me strict definitions
of nutrition, though i think
those definitions have changed. maybe
the food pyramid is 3-dimensional now,
a 2-dimensional pyramid can
only say so much, like photographs of
the countryside which are very nice but
after a while fall flat.
I met a man with a flat liver,
"i wish i wasn't an alcoholic. i used to
think i'd live forever," he said but
he only drank a glass of
red wine a day so i didn't
believe him. i once decided
to try nature photography, i
was going to hike up a mountain but
it had been raining and i thought of
erosion, wondering if the mountain would be
flat one day but the trail was
steep, slippery and wet so i went home. You were
feeling better and you
bummed me a cigarette.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Will I Forget Who I am.

Does your mouth taste like alcohol?

Make a drink.

Problem solved.

Monday, April 9, 2007

the language barrier

once i saw
a japanese businessman
speaking frustrated painful japanese
to an american girl working the lobby
of a fine chicago hotel
they were both talking rapidly
and neither understood a damn word
the other said
it was no surprise
considering all the literate,
english-speaking folks in the same hotel
who have just as much trouble as that japanese man
understanding the girl when she says
"please, calm down."

Thursday, April 5, 2007

You're Just In Time

All day, sounds from the White City’s streets litter spring scenes
like gum stains stuck to sidewalks during black paved dreams.
Never to be wakened.

Never to be disturbed unless on the off chance that their concrete roots are relieved
of their imprisonment and molded back into the safe molten surface
from whence they initially came.

Trains billow by the street like a jet’s sonic boom circa 1948.
Nuclear weapon drills mean kids under seats.
“Duck and cover” translates to the image of “dust all over.”

Because that’s all there is going to be.
Nice new sneakers?
Dust all over.

Nice Christmas sweater?
Dust all over.
Picture postcard from across the sea?

Duck and cover.
Phone message from a loved one in a dire time of need,
dust all over.

Garbage trucks and sixteen wheelers are 21st century tombs.
Embalmed in filth by means of crisply baked bones.
Contents speckled white,

left to sparkle like a diamond setting foot
on an ancient Cambodian clay-
more mines.

Discontent, Winter 2005

With every comfort
you re-evaluate what
you deserve and what
you're paid and with this pay
you buy what
you want and leave what
you need to everyone who owes

Sideways glances,
you're so calm and unimpressed.
I'd like every sarcastic fuck
and every unflattering sunset back
and I want you on the next train out of this town
so I don't have to tell you I've lied all along
and you don't have to tell me what more you want
and how hard your life is without it.

This middle-ground,
it's littered with misunderstanding
and all I need right now
is to be sure of something.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007


charm is
a dangerous thing,
my friend

because although
it has its benefits
although it grants you the ability
to make as
meaningful of friends
as you'll ever have

you must be cautious
for there are all sorts of
poor fellows out there
just waiting for someone to
give a second look
with a concerned word
to spill all over themselves
and gouge out their own soul as
an offering, as if to say
please, you caring
son of a bitch
see what you can do with it
i can't seem to fix it

and you'll catch yourself
sputtering and choking
and regretting every
sympathetic gesture
because you know
that you would fall over
the same way
for someone
a little more charming
than yourself
and you know
that you're far too broken
to do a damn thing
to help

Monday, April 2, 2007

We don't know the difference between right and wrong

if we did
we wouldn't use eachother
or kill our chances of productivity
with sex
and selflessness.

Alcohol isn't an anti-depressant
it's an over the counter

Percocet, Vicodin, alcohol, and weed. Let's be honest, who still needs "cutting" to feel complete?

There was a cutter on the TV. Some lonely kid looking for attention. His feelings bled thin in small red lines. Or sometimes curves, or zigzags, or in the form of perfectly shaped crosses that would make a vampire rile in his wooden staked coffin.

"He should just man up and stop cutting himself."

Her and I, we've got stories for every scar spanning the full length of our bodies. The television makes us begin to exchange their origins and like people, scars love to talk about where they came from...

"I almost cut off my thumb."
"I think you told me that, check out these bruises. They’re from last night in the street, when I tripped and fell…. By the way, my right foot is starting to swell."
"Bummer, check out those red veins."
"That's just a scratch."
"Oh, sorry. I initially mistook it for eczema anyways."
"I've got cuts up and down my right arm. They’re kind of hard to see.”
"That’s weird, your skin feels flawless.'"
"Yeah, but don’t touch, just look real close…"
"I still don't se... er, um?"

Scars. And lots of them.

I stay positive and try not to ask about the crusted ridges strewn like dirty socks across her skin. Instead, I light a cigarette and sit back to watch Chris Angel’s, Mindfreak. After five minutes of professional brain numbing slight-of-hand, she silently stands up, almost on cue with a commercial, and cries a solemn, “be right back!”

Twenty minutes and two cellular phone calls later, she returns to the couch and hides under a comforter. Her right hand is glowing. It’s been totally polished clean; pale-pink on top of cadaver white. Throughout the duration of a half-hour show, her hand’s become marble that looks like it’s been scrubbed too hard with gritty public restroom soap.

Beneath the gleam were red trails and brown rusted segments. They flowed between lifelines turned peach, resembling streams seen from an airplane flying over Rocky Mountain ravines. Even from just a few feet, her hand looked like a lava flow of sunset dusk; red scavenging the depths of dry skin cracks.

With a deep breath I realized that while I had been watching a man break free from a straight jacket in a shark infested tank, she'd been downstairs in the dark, humming quietly and cutting herself over a sink.

In a poor attempt to ignore what I had seen, I tried to stay positive, and asked...

"So, how come you always wear sleeves?"

Friday, March 30, 2007

& thanks don’t speak

I rise—mist off the pavement
no, a cigarette reversing from a puddle
back into her lips—carrying on—
why do you cry? I don’t—no,
I haven’t—forgotten conversing—if
you call it that—I was speaking once
skipping honesty—running on—an
incomplete sentence—& thanks—how am I
supposed to write—what was barely dear,
wrenched underground—sense—dull
other’s stench—you brought them here?
better start thinking—of your own
excuses—I’m sick of finding them
for you—“sleep is the best medicine”
but I don’t dream—but I don’t pray
be thankful—I don’t remember dressed up
pretty words—can always finish later
cutting out, careful editing—why stop
a line?—say it spit spill over my face—
physical shape—syllables drowned—in
liquor giving different names—can’t get
the story straight—you told me to get an iron—
what does that mean? I produce, I distribute
—I shit & can hold up better than the rest
—I shave & kiss softer than the sleaze
—I shank in the dark & don’t speak

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Television and Art

Maybe I don't write
with the largest
or with a sense
of art
but this poetry I read
the abstract and a-linear
plays out like free jazz:
it might sound great
but what do you think when the record ends?

Does it make you think of politics?
Men in blue suits and red ties shaking hands and starting wars.

Does it make you think of sex?
Two bodies rhythmically connected.

Does it make you think of art?
A bohemian in a black beret and an apartment in lower manhattan.

I get sick of pretense
Does that make me a savage?

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Multicultural Dreams and Snow

My bed’s been a canyon and I a God among its cliffs. Where avalanche and switchbacks stain everything a dull shade of Indian red, I descend to the determined creek below, evidence of a movement that permanently shaped the globe.

- - - -

I saw two young white girls clad in bright blue and green uniforms lollygagging in front of an all black Chicago public school. They were pressing their palms together, mimicking that elementary “London Bridge is falling down” game.

They were twins. Same height, same hair, same eyes, same bright white silk tights and they were right out in front where the black kids usually yell and fight.

I sat and thought, stewed and laughed, and still don’t have a clue as to why they felt the need to writhe and giggle in the middle of that Lincoln Park city block.

- - - -

Before drugs and epidemics, war and tonsillitis, icebergs left scars deeper than the sea is blue.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

A Death or Two

At the end of things, I suppose I was just relieved (maybe somewhat ecstatic) that it was finally over. You were the first girl I assigned the word “love” to, and I had watched as everything I “loved” about you disappeared, as if I were sitting on a front porch in the sleepy (read: comatose) southern Minnesota farm town where my father grew up, watching as every light on Main Street burnt out one by one without being replaced, watching as the bowling alley burnt for a second time (insurance fraud was suspected in both cases, but never proven) and Mr. Klingbile escaped with the money. At the end of things, I suppose I was desperate—more so even than old Klingbile—to get out and not look back.

On the Roman Empire

Think about a battlefield
eleven miles wide
think about the blood and horseshit
that soaks into the ground
and how fertile that plain will be the following year

The peasants will plant corn and barley
to share with one another

The following year
during harvest season
another battle will enrich more soil

I hope someone reminded the peasants
to wash their crops well.

Friday, March 2, 2007

Everything Makes Sense Right Before the Weekend

Everywhere and everything and everyone I’ve ever loved,
All race through my head, tripping on past memories.

Snow forts, ice tunnels, frozen lakes, and hockey skates.
There’s one from ice fishing and another spent camping under stars.
Or my first meteor shower at night with my father.

Him and I and Orion looked onward during a night that seemed like it would last forever.
And it did.

Because I still remember.

The days pass like onion rings,
Satisfying and tasty with a fast and furious exodus.
It's been hard to keep down any sort of feeling,
They just bleed and bleed and bleed and ble...

Happiness from my mouth, sadness strolling down my eyes.
Comfort is seen by a slouched back in chairs,
And agitation gets acted through the click and clack of type on keys.

Did you hear, my bathroom ceiling is aleaking
Flush goes upstairs, brace yourself for the downpour.
If going to the bathroom wasn’t uncomfortable enough,
Imagine getting dripped on by someone else’s urine.

It does make the bathroom more exciting.
Like the tension before D-Day, but don’t worry about the bodies
Because yours won’t be among them

Someone else will end up in your place.

So let’s talk happiness. Which is much more appropriate.
Happiness is snow on the ground or riding the crest of a breeze.
Smiling in its face and getting tickled by magnificent shapes.
Dare I speculate the seasons last fall?
If that is the case, then why, oh why am I writing this?

Secrets. Let’s talk mystery.
There are things that happen that cannot be told to friends.
Kisses beneath oak trees,
Murders performed cold blooded in streets,
Stealing from the family,
And holding on to suicide dreams.

If no one tells or thinks about them,
Who is to say if they ever even happened?

Let’s talk grieving.
Late nights and feelings.
Drunk dials at four o’clock in the morning.
Good thing no one’s around to receive them.
To miss someone is like breathing,
By the time it’s noticed through dreams and journal musings,
It can’t be stopped.

It just keeps on going.

Let’s talk shopping.
Packages slink in neat gift wrap,
A cashier who looks a lot like Steve Van Zandt,
Frantic masses huddling to see the new Gadzooks
Grand opening.
Where a table sits with free fresh coffee,
hot danish,
and a mountain of steam soaked bagels.

“Pass me that cruller and I’ll grant you my money!
Cause I worked hard for it and I,
I am buying your service!”

Let’s talk flipping.
Bowling alleys are a great place for their majesty
Buttons, noises, shoots, and plungers,
It sounds like something out of a sick sci-fi movie.
"Get those points! Hit that obstruction!
Flip before it goes down the C shoot,
that way you can get a gnarly fucking bonus!”

A Simpson’s quote is the only way to conclude this,
To show how I really feel
About bright lights blinking multi-balled madness…

“[television] destroyed more young minds than syphilis
and pinball

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

I can be anything

Where does my mind wander?
Why does it go there?

At night.
Always at night.

When I can’t help but remember.
Because it gets cold, even under covers
And I feel alone.

I can be anything
for you
I think these thoughts.
I can be anything
to you
I come from naught.

Because I am alone

The taste of face and cheek and collarbone in the morning
were proof enough to believe in the twelve Olympian deities
of w

We touched until the clocks struck eight,
when our alarms finally got off,
before we really woke up.

Now it's
Always like this. Late and a… al
Are you at home,
asleep and holding your cats close?

Maybe you’re dreaming
or next to a Caucasian European
(Russian, German, Polish, Hungarian)
not sleeping.

Latin. Spanish. French. Swahili.
I can sing the planet’s geography.

So lay down, breathe,
forget your brain, and listen
to the sound of another heartbeat racing
the thrusts into your body.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

A World

In a world without god
flies gather on shit
and men and women love each other

In a world without god
the loneliest people find solace
in the fact that there are others
who are as lonely as they are.

In a world without god
there are people crying and children
who laugh purely at the amusement
that life itself provides.

In a world without god
the empty staff paper is filled
with notes of rejoice.

In a world without god
the future is bleak and the possibilities are endless.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

When Strangling a Friend Make Sure That He's Really Dead

Hear the camaraderie from fifteen feet away.
Two people. One interest
that is shared.
So it’s okay.

Two Glares.
Send them over. They’re all too flattering.

The talk,
the thoughts ring deep
within this body.

Filled with blue blood.

Look, it bleeds red
so easily.

Crimson flow dissected between the calluses on red-right hands.

But it's too late,
it’s receded beneath twenty unpainted fingertips.

Now, just listen to the blood beat,


A mantra for terrified insides because their lungs are polished so bleakly.
And their livers limp longingly.
And pancreases stagger painfully.
And hearts that palpitate distastefully.
And two stomach to digest food dangerously.
And small intestines that pass black waste so inefficiently.

But outside, where lovely hands land effortlessly
and perfect lips part seductively,
two noses snort real quietly,

"Baby, you’re so good at pretending.”

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Treasure Maps Breathe

[Look for an area that is known for pink, ripe peaches. Where local folk boast of its small town beaches.]

Brown grass covered by big pussy willows.
Dirt ground filled with moss covered stones.
Tree trunks long sunk pile on the lake’s floor.
Submerged brown logs have long since been gored.

The water is elusive and can’t be seen from shore. It’s always disguised by foliage and salicaceae branches. If curious enough to still brave the swim, be like the seamen and bring extra pairs of britches.

The water itself is too green with algae.
Scattered lily pads scathe feet slimy with weeds.

If a boat can be found or one wants drown, two legendary white flowers soak in the only sunlight around.

Adventurer Be wary:
No one knows how or who to place blame, but those two rare lotuses always get picked.

First sign of spring.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

On Writing

I like it when a poem doesn't say a whole lot.
When it dances around a message
like leaves around that statue of Garibaldi in Washington Square Park.
When the poem can speak
without ever really saying anything.

I like to read three pages and think two sentences,
like the author has you by the ears and he's dragging you along,
and you're kicking and screaming.

I think the finest poets can stare at a sky so big it seems to end below their feet
and sum it up in a few short words:
"No sky is bigger than another."

When a Decision is Made to Stay in One Place.

The snow was light and sparse and reminded him of the pubic hair on his first real red-headed girlfriend.

It was the kind of snow that fell and melted the second it hit one’s skin.

The way it inhaled and exhaled itself toward the pavement was nothing short of a visual phenomenon. It breathed just enough to maintain a light barrier over the preexisting sharp ridges of what was once it’s brethren but now, it’s inevitable fate: Ice crunched under foot like the sound of bones breaking in a high school football game.

Minus the fans and all the noisemakers, he glided across the thick white patches with finesse and straight-back confidence. He’d remember this walk when he’d get home. He’d use it as an excuse to not go out again. It was beautiful and he knew it. But the beauty was not worth the risk to step outside his apartment. To walk the nearly six blocks, for water, to an always empty corner store.

Leaving wouldn’t be worth the work come Friday when he’d still be sick and have to spend another late January weekend with his friends completely sober on feeling alone.

The phone rings and he ignores it. He doesn’t try to do it; he’s just doing something more important…

Tending to his eyebrows.

Swabbing out his earlobes.

Flossing past the canines.

Dabbing his face with coarse hand towels.

Unlike snowflakes, his beauty would stay. Yet, snowflakes are not susceptible to eight a.m. headaches or vulnerable to the dentist's ultimate nemesis, teeth sick with fits of decay.

Flakes lack hands and wrists and five digit fists. They are truly unable to ensure long lasting survival. Come rain or shine, in the end, snow just dies.





They breathe down to the ground. Dissipating like an airy “o” from a drawn out southern belle’s “hello.”

He’d make sure he was preserved. He was cold, yeah that was it.

He was cool. It could be seen in his alizarin colored cheeks.
He loved the winter weather.
He loved to see that he could outlive the existence of his very own element.

A Brief and Charming Trip North.

Platform fifteen at 4:33. Upper deck, green vinyl sleek seats.

Cue north suburban scenery.

Lake Forest, Illinois.
Quaint. Sun setting pink on a middle class neighborhood.

A church and a strip mall and an out of place green and white fast food establishment.

Most excellent wait service.

“Big” Mac is an overstatement

Forty-five minute walk toward some liberal art writing retreat on a cement stream littered with trees. An hour and a half is all we can spare. Not enough to walk. Call a cab. It doesn’t show.

We give up.

We get distracted.

Circle three sidewalks and a parking lot. Make the short journey one square block.

See a bank and an empty gas station. Perched above pines a pale cuticle shaped satellite. Astral decor for centuries. Accessory to everything.

Skin looking good underneath a waxing “Wolf Moon.”


The train station is deserted.


A vagabond talks to a dark man mopping.

The train does not arrive.

Stranded in Lake Forest.

An old-fashioned clock tells the time. A big clock with both hands points toward “panic.”

Quickly calmed down -Sunday schedule reads that we are to leave at 9:00.

Seconds smoke by until there’s one last cigarette.

At 8:55, we're sailing south on once green, now burgundy, sleek vinyl seats.

Monday, February 19, 2007

"On mushroom-top trees"

On a bus to chicago
the third I was supposed to catch since
last night,
I see half a dozen pine trees in a forest of dead oaks
as if to say "we understand our purpose,
but serve it only to the hawks that nest in our piney branches"