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7.1k · Jan 2015
Statistics
Estimate tells us the avg. height
of a female in the U.S. is 64 inches.
This is quantitative. Unfeeling of prospect,
the numbers fascinate and baffle.

Recent estimation supposes
1500 active volcanoes on the earth of which
500 have erupted since history,
the invention of writing.

                                                       ­                Such a short time ago.

Measuring in quantities, the earth is
4.5-4.6 billion years old.
Creatures of like sentience who never wrote about
volcanoes, the age of their earth.

Quantities hum of something borrowed.
So tight-wound, so deeply close, and yet still.

                                                         ­               Something not ours.
                                                                        Blind, free of invention.
5.0k · Mar 2013
Good Men
A good man
ought to be left
alone,

lest this evil world
wrap itself
around and
swallow him whole.
3.5k · Feb 2015
Manners
By book-ends my stomach is churning,
I'm cantankerous and stand-offish
in spurts, barely there in others.
I could not dig up where my head was
if I had to. I do not have to.
There are some things in my life that
lead themselves to failure. I have dropped
instinct, instead adopting pattern,
a means of coping with the endlessness
of life in a globalized world.
This is not lament. I could part with
objectivity, happy to expire for a
scrap of extra sentience. Please, before
my words become manners and manners become
holes full of dirt, pardon me for the mess.
I only had so much time after all.
2.1k · Dec 2014
Funnelmouth (IV)
(stopping here to tell you about my first
******* because it was terrible &
the one thing I remember most vividly,
a pock under her left eye
marking my shame & confusion &
this portion of the poem is a lie)
2.1k · Jan 2015
Basquiat: An Essay, part one
I

I am often attracted to things unhinged. Not necessarily (traditionally) romantic, more akin to an unwillingness to ask permission, one who might say It was never your permission to begin with and not be angry or upset about having to say it. Few are so willing to evaluate situations without the overwhelming cloud of emotion. Judgment fully withheld, kind banter catching wind. A needed immediacy.

Jean-Michel Basquiat was aware of the past. He pretended to not care if you did not like his paintings. Part of him was upset some people did not understand. Basquiat strangled history down to basics: music, culture, society (not the same thing), generations of family after family. His point was not for you to obtain this. This was his conscience—tangible. Brain processing. Synthesizing. To him it was so simple. I refuse the word primal because it is misguided, it does not factor purity, clarity. Sugar Ray Robinson told Basquiat to stop painting the background. Tuxedo told Basquiat what words to place and where.

So much of my art is stripped and lucid and enacted with only me in mind.
1.9k · Feb 2015
Plate Tectonics
Bend at the waist
be a doll, doll,
dance your *** down
this way, my way
into sentiment, burning
images onto the brain
you can't get away.

Bend babe, shake or
shiver as you please
let lethargy melt into
unkempt smiles, deep
dimples of face-skin
softened in sweet sun ray.

All the people in the street.
Where are they going, and
what does that mean in the
end-times, the ever-present hour
of a dying world's last breaths,
here for sole reason of shepherding
the sheep, because you're a wolf
are you not?

Miles above the weeping masses,
holding it together with barely
a grip to give name; coping
they call it, accepting reality as
objective, something separate from
myself.

I imagine the world as a bubble
and I hold the pin-needle, too close
to body to alarm and too close
to bubble to bat away, bend
please, bend at wrist for sake of
sanity, bury yourself neck-deep in
chance. Bend babe,
bend away.
1.7k · Dec 2013
Haiku #007
There is blood on the
belly of all living things.
Pity it's so smudged.
1.6k · Dec 2014
Duccio's Maestá
And now we see the singularity
of the artist, wrists spread bare on
mimed canvas, finally we see
his consistency.
Lazarus is dead on the first day.
Gold background, rocky outcrop,
sense of cluttered space.
Do you see the decay?
Can you sympathize, or do you notice?

I cannot sympathize with Duccio,
I am too vain to admit his Maestá
survives while my brain rots from
alcohol. But I remember Duccio is
at least fifty years old when his Maestá
preeminently destroys my career
as a visual artist. I do not mind.

Lazarus is dead on the second day.
Duccio had many pupils, among them
Simone Martini, whose Annunciation
is a cropped rehash of Byzantine/Gothic
flopped with Duccio's handy flair,
a pious reverence and virtue.
It sweeps and moves. Or attempts.
Lazarus is no longer sleeping.

I have never been to the city of Florence,
not now nor the 1300s, so I need not
explain my lack of comprehension.
Lazarus has risen now,
but it is different than I remember.
Lazarus is all alone, and
Lazarus is alive,
doomed to walk in mortal Hellfire
a second time over.
1.6k · Jan 2015
Dust to Dust
He paints his ashtray
alkaline blue,
a petty tip-of-the-hat to
harbingers of evil,
men between men and
women sitting aside,
head bobbed
in embarrassment.

What have we become which
normalized gestures do not
puncture?

His alkaline blue ashtray
trading dust for roach buds
and where is he off to,
brain sorting sentiment with
barred numbers, statistics,
inaccessible phenomena.
Pains to say most often he is
wandering in the wings
flapping for attention.

How humanity must suffer
in the name of
self-effacement.

He and his
alkaline blue ashtray
skitter across the landscape
(a da Vinci,
a Mona Lisa)
again in apathy to watch
petty tip-of-the-hat prisoners
wag thumbs and call
each other names.

In the end of things,
reason does not prevail.

The dust is all.
He craved a father like a burnout
licking his sugarcane eyes &
slapping them on
any surface they'd stick &

he called night The Kingdom
would wander off for ages
said I don't need to know
where I'm goin'


said Someday I'll have already
found it
& maybe he's right
All people die a little
more in daylight


he was 16
a dry firecracker
one spark away
from infinite eruption
You said he was skinny and sagging
and he wore a sad face for show.
I feel as though I am the man
in your nightmare.
I can't tell you to wake up.
1.4k · Jan 2015
Funnelmouth VII
Picture the word Devastation.
What do you see?
Bodies in a motorcycle accident.
Buildings of fire falling.

But that is not it,
it cannot be. Picture the word
DEVASTATION.

                                            ­          What do you see?

I see something so unbelievably
personal.

Devastation must mean my own life
in wreckage. A body in a
motorcycle accident.

                                                        A jump from a
                                                        burning­ building.

I cannot divulge how deeply
this is seared in my thoughts.
Picture the word

Shame
Incidence
Accident
Immolation
Remember
Breath­
Grass
Water
Wreckage

Picture the word Love.
What do you see?
Picture the word Devastation.
What do you see?

Are you surrounded?
Only a few?
Are you alone?
Do you want to be?

There is no shame in any answer.
I do not press my morality on others
but we must, must believe that.
There is no shame in any answer.
1.3k · Nov 2012
Elegy, a Son to his Father
He was a father's son:
quiet, respectful, hard-working.

He loved the winter. The snow flaking
off the trees. Chilled little prayers.

His father had seizures. Every once in
a long while, his father's eyes would lock
his mother's and his being would tense,
frozen like Cybil's lake across the pasture.
Writhe, foam at the mouth.

He was an old man now. He remembered
everything about his father.

His raspy, charmed voice. His knowing brow.
His leather bound skin wrapped around years of a blunt ax and needy firewood.

As the son's eyes closed into nothing,
he remembers Christmas with his father. A reunion of sorts.

He would ring the doorbell, his father on the steps.
He would invite him in for coffee. He would refuse, only to say, It was nice to see you, George.

Yes, you too Dad. Take care.
Goodbye.
Inspired by Paul Harding's novel "Tinkers."
Four walls and one door
maintaining (perfectly) in-tune
with the outside world,
countless libraries and braver
brains in court, fingertips
away.

Too much sometimes, too much
noise and sleepless racket,
no need for hotel wifi or
roaming minutes, change nowadays
burns faster than
relationships.

I woke today to find
bombshells exploding elsewhere,
slaughtered innocents and
captives in bright silver fences
until the next time I
read about it.

My brain is spent running in
slow-motion. I have glasses now,
my vision once was perfect but
staring at screens beat biology
to the punch: a most frightening
revelation.
1.2k · Nov 2012
Smart Poetry
Smart poetry



Christian pacifist punk artists shaking their fists at the government elite

Mothers dreaming in Tide-to-Go and quiet nights

'"Bed-head" implies you have a bed to sleep'

Cracked lips, because its cold and I don't display that spring-merry ****

Smart poems sound like silly songs

John 8:7

Greek reference to Aphrodite and her thousand noses

'I haven't slept in four days'

Atheists asking fundamentalists to dance at the prom because you're alive now in this moment at the least

'It's silly to think we'll be alone forever'

Finality—some kind of closure

I can't seem to sleep
1.1k · Nov 2015
Taxation with Form
I have not changed in years (it seems),
     physically I am constant,
six feet and lopping sack of
     bone and skin, buck-forty
on my best, wettest day.

These months have flown as
     leaves in fall.
November is come and soon
     will escape with the wind
as well and I am solidly planted
     at a desk in an office with a
floor too hard to deepen the reach
     of my roots.

I am like to wither and rot,
     left rootless in snow and
ice; ash of autumn, flowerless.
     The trees will die—grounded,
yes, and utterly passionless.
I don't know the rules. If I go looking
for grace and find it, what will grace

be but penance for my past, a silver
sinew-thread wrapping 'round old
            wrongs, gray hair for the
                        fickle.

I've naught but want for sweet release
from this history. The bombs ignored,
            repeating in gramophone static
                        dripping stiff

as wet bamboo. I remember someone
once sang here, once strung together

chords so sweet they rang like peace-
bells beneath cloudless sky. They've
            rang the bell upon my jaw and
                        done no wrong.

It's not so much unlike one's curiously
cold reception at a funeral. The cold
            and rain ****** at the skin
                        during graveside hymnal.

As long as the earth continues
its stony breathing I will breathe.

That which I cannot help but do.
Stuck between boulders, I sing.

When it stops, I will shatter back
into gravity. Into quartz.
"Rimrock" is a poem from Kaveh Akbar's 2017 collection "Calling a Wolf a Wolf." Akbar's lines are in standard type; my lines are in italics.
1.1k · May 2016
Hospice
There lies a picture on the mantle
of my grandfather, my step-father's
father, clad in U.S. Navy fatigues
and grinning slightly, almost a
smirk. The year is 1960-something
as he enlists for Vietnam and is
shipped overseas on the USS
Corral Sea to load sidewinders
into fighter planes that ignite and
****. It happens so fast.

It happened so fast. Two months
of time reduced to blinks and
minute-long visits. This house could
be cold as Mt. Meru's peak and I
would hardly notice. The brain has
ways of placing things on autopilot.

His life has come to pass and I am
left to wonder. I am not sure I ever
truly knew the man. I heard stories,
his helicopter shot down in Vietnam,
his E&E; north of the ** Chi Minh and
how he owned a gun shop on Main
St. in the town I came to call home
before it was my home. I cannot hear
his whispering, small wind of existence
sidewinding away from me and my
youthfulness. In small time I've come
to find life is meaningful if you take time
to make it so.

The day of his funeral is beautiful,
sunny and mild and full of breeze.
The gas tank of my mother's car is
close to empty and I am worried of
worldly things, will we make it and
when can we fill up again. 21 guns
gives my heart a needed beating.
For Grandpa Cliff
1.1k · Oct 2012
Coffee & Cigarettes
1
O black golden cleanser
O ebony shrine ballast
Pry open mine eyes,
sharpen my senses like cutlery
& envelop me—
Is the day so young

another cup please, just to
Get me going

2
Heat
Not quite that of a fire
"but trust me, don't touch it"
Let the smoke stiffen
& soften become the
summation of particles & at once
lose all sense of being

I'll have a smoke now—
maybe I'll kick it a little later
1.1k · Jan 2015
His manner of walking
I am walking for escape
Silence, darkness

It is sudden. Sound of
two-by-fours smacking grain
lit up in the distance,
                       the street

Maternal scream mistaken for
coyote howl, sticky-tongued
lamentation filling the space,
                       lockbox

Grey matter spilling
the street for a
beggar's mouthful

I could make known my notice
Or leave his peace at asphalt
rocking skull-bone;

marrow cut loose: free
This is a poem in progress; any feedback (form, imagery, et al.) I could get would be amazing.
985 · Jan 2015
Lincoln, Nebraska (pt. IV)
Before I went my way
I was unsure if my car tire popping
constituted omen or bad luck.
That is the frame of mind I was in
leaving Lincoln.

Now I realize most of this is temporary
distraction, soon Nebraska passes and
Missouri remains, as it always has.
One year later I will change my college major,
theatre to sociology.

Lincoln taught me lessons, not
all of them important. I found true solace
in watching others, why they walk like that,
what their hair says about their politics,
microbes erupting into civilization.

Leaving Lincoln behind was so remarkably
necessary in its devices. I will always
make time for my thoughts, my seasons,
thanks to the dull, blinding cold of

Lincoln, Nebraska.
980 · Mar 2019
Untitled (03.18.2019)
First we watched the fires dance
lapping at the old wood like
a parched dog's tongue to water

Second we bought vegetables from
a man and ate them without washing
or burning with fire

Next I can't remember but it was
so very long and sad and the things
that make people cry
made us cry

Without a compass I can't move
a new direction even if the wind
rips at my back and thrusts me
forward

I am the shadow of tree limbs
on bright mornings

Dark and soft and untouchable
933 · May 2014
Manitoba
I wanted to die

This house This place I can't

Tried to drown it smother suffocate deprive ******* life-force

I felt feel I belong to some Otherplace

I still feel; weeknight dim-dark

Streetlamps cities and my eyes swole shut a silly haze

No sugar or milk please thank you and could you

The owls sound off—or owl they all sound the same don't they

One too many passersby

Screams far away terrible

Wait for prescribed calm to take hold

Crows are not like owls are not like vultures

No thing is like any other thing

This I've come to sense

I can't shake this pain from my belly
896 · Dec 2014
Haiku #018
PSA: please set
aside time today to hug
a gay narcissist.
887 · Jun 2013
Bicker Bicker
He figured the birds were chirping.

It's a beautiful day, just warm enough in direct sunlight. Squirrels hopped around the fenceposts.

The neighbour boys, splashing and jumping in the swimming pool,
mindful they didn't run around the concrete edges or their father would step outside and firmly correct them. He loved them, didn't want them hurt.

Spring is alive.
Birds are chirping.

He wondered what birds sound like.
Comes to pass my picture of the Middle East
(one minute and twenty one seconds of television news,
          much less than I had thought)
is an inaccurate representation of people
and the individuality of their experience.

How does one measure the merit of
I am offended?

If all I know are snapshots, misdirecting
the issue, changing path to digest murdered cartoonists
killed with Allah in mind
          (another misdirection)
and I am not outraged.

Sadness manifests as thick fog
blocking artificial light, splitting the rays,
opening up and flexing, the truth as is,
the sole truth we must attain;
          we are slow, dying creatures.
Inborn freedoms dissolve.

Did Salman Rushdie beg forgiveness for
images of his head book-ending a spear,
or did he die a little in secret?

Suppose I am a rouser marching the streets of
New York City, a gold pendant of two
          falling towers adorning
my chest-cave, Je Suis etched into my forehead
(black felt-tip).

Do you defend me?
Relish in your torment of words?

Will you bury the fire in your belly
for sake of freedom?
Dedicated to Dr. Clifford-Napoleone, for teaching me no reality rises above any other.
870 · May 2014
Lucifer
I received my weekly phone call from Lucifer.
He sounded ill, like his throat was full of
sandpaper. I told him he should probably
cut down on the talking and let himself
heal. He let me know how the kids are
doing, and I told him about the storm
that was passing through tonight and
how hopefully nothing would be damaged,
but he told me to accept this as fact.
There are some things one simply cannot
change, he says. Storms and violence.
For example.
842 · Jan 2016
The Transfiguration
God slips from
tongue as phlegm
from lung post-
cigarette

back to back
reel to reel
sitting *** to heel
palm to palm

praying

I've spent paychecks
laying pavement
into bedsheets
bearing teeth

biting holes into
free time
me time
with myself

waiting

twenty one years
stacking unread
newspaper new with
news not bothering
with digestion

to treat the text
as words on paper

*******
transfiguration

sight unseen the
sight of me in
chapel pacing through
Peter as though
for penance

God is meant
a friend to
comfort but
recently its
felt dishonest

a masquerade
a malformation
Portions of this poem borrow from the poems "Back" by Christian Wiman and "Reel to Reel" by Alan Shapiro, as well as the song "The Transfiguration" by Sufjan Stevens.
I talked with you on the phone the other day.
You were telling me how you visited the zoo;
spent an afternoon watching the zebra graze
and the lions lazily roar at civilians with digital cameras.

I talked with you on the phone the other day.
You were visiting the zoo, crying on the phone—
How can they keep them in cages
Locked away as if they don't feel like we do

You forget
there are people in cages without keyholes
there are blistered eyeballs scanning a lightless horizon for a lock pick or a clothespin
that may allow them to puzzle their way into the gears
There are people who die searching

I talked with you on the phone the other day.
We chit-chatted about sunbeams and lawnmowers.
We were happy, careless.
There are no cages here.

Only keys.
774 · Dec 2012
Skag
The morning after was cold.
I shielded my eyes as the blinds cut
open; scratched glass gives
way to a beautiful summer morning.

Avoiding my pupils at all cost, you
scurry out of bed and mechanically toss
your clothes atop that slender frame
just in time to say,
I should go. I can't disagree.
I haven't the conviction.

The sores on my arm have all but blackened;
bruises beneath the surface of my
skin retell the night like a lost tape:
we came home, we made love,
we rode a euphoric steel railway in a lumpy,
benign mess of an evening.

Now it is morning. Birds are chirping,
children play games in the street.
Light shames to shine on our battered faces.
773 · Dec 2019
Lick
So many lists
So little **** to
add
               to an expression
               of the expression
of others

I spent a decade
letting others
express my feelings
for me
               and not for
               lack of flaking

I've almost 25-
years strapped to my
belt
              and the greater
              of those years
licking evil

if I'd the ***** to
spit my faults as
simply a product of
nothing then
              they were me
              always me
in tongue-sposed summation
767 · Jul 2016
Set Sun Set
Set sun set
on this tired day
which is yet to
yield quick promise
of new light

Light seeps into
my window in
mornings like an
intruder wearing
steel-toed boots

I can't quite crack
my eyes from their
shutters shuttered
tight as fingers curled
in death grip

Gripping my sheets
I shake the sleep
off my bones to
find a new me
an old me

Barely breathing
of my own volition
until I am reminded
that I must indeed
breathe

Breath of Adam
and Eve or something
in-between it *****
and shivers like
shutters slammed shut

This is nothing new
as the sun will rise
and fall as it has before
and always will or
maybe it will break

Patterns are the
death of will
dying lilies of
too much sun or
too little

Set sun set
on this tired day
of bang and repeat
and give reprieve to
those of us

Left upright
You smoked your throat gone.

I'll sit in bed opening and closing my Opinel No. 8 and stare at an unread compilation of a then-alive poet's correspondence with a then-and-still-dead poet and wonder at the cover art, a fishing-line-thin threaded rope that could well be tied in a slipknot. Tendrils that look like loose straw scattered thirty different ways.

He said You can't **** your life away and there are many ways to do that. I'm stuck inside a small bedroom dreaming or hallucinating an open space, streams flowing from nowhere near and flat space so full of sky it is sin to call it empty. The world can be hot and fast;  I am bad at resting. I don't sleep well. I can float a river and not once hear it moving.

You drank and dissected your drinking so it could masquerade as something under your control. We all are guilty of this at some point. In some way or another. I am lucky to sit in my bedroom and write that the next two years of my life have well been mapped. I do not pout, there is no malice here. My head is close, fastened between my small shoulders. I share no heart with Yesenin.

You can't **** your life away he said he thought. These things change. *But you can!
This letter makes frequent references to Jim Harrison's poetry collection Letters to Yesenin, originally published in 1973.
758 · Dec 2013
Bygone
Spring yielded it's light blue, sending
little spines of fiber-work glass clippings about
and smelling like summer and sun and
reminiscent days long past and gone away.

He, blissful, weary, marched unfettered
amongst the wrecked flora, a hop in his step,
prancing about like someone younger
than he, who had seen little and felt less.

He had an attitude; bumbling, messy,
he was hardly a man for all men, but rather
a stoic symbol of time stood stone still, a
slapdash rendering of a simpler, better era.

Summer gave way to Autumn's yellow chill.
Soon winter stood, watching still and
silent, frigid as the bones in the funeral home.
The seasons painted his headstone. A canvas.
757 · Jan 2015
4
4
I've lent myself to self
parody. I am yellow grass
in summer. So easy to see
in daylight, split-rays.

Again I stumble through the
door too closely, nose grazing
siding too rough, not fit for
suburban living.

I am outside now, cigarette in lungs
almost empty of airspace. Tight
breath, silt sinew of exhale and
burning, eyes painted in panic.

Four smokes in, cherry blossom
cheeks, a rosary of liquor, perhaps
lending myself to sanity,
a bright morning in autumn.
756 · Dec 2014
Lincoln, Nebraska (pt. I)
Hearts sparse in this carpark,
the wind feeling rowdy, biting like a
small rabid animal with no collar
wandering the city alone at night.

The car is making me claustrophobic,
I've spent far too much time with the heat,
too many minutes burning cigarettes and
my hands near-numb from the caffeine.

Poems are less like action movies and
more like action paintings exploding
in suspended motion. I'm sure we all
remember when art felt new. I can't
recall when it didn't feel so lived-in.

(And of course this poem is merely
a memory of feelings, which is not much
of anything to me or you because the past
is dry and done and does not intrude.
)

Lincoln, Nebraska is a livelier city
than one expects. It is like going to an
art exhibit expecting Rothko and getting
Basquiat, bombast and immediacy.

My favorite poet is Craig Morgan Teicher
because he and I may ramble but he is not
afraid to sacrifice accessibility for
feeling. He could find the beauty in the
image of Lincoln, Nebraska in January.

I will soon need to devise another way
to keep myself entertained so let us
say this CD spins one more time and
maybe I can go for a walk, clear my head.

I do not intend this to be wrought with
sentiment, but there are times I am not
as cold as this city. There are times
the mind must scream
so the heart stays safe.
I spent a week in Lincoln, Nebraska in January of this year.
738 · Oct 2017
Hunters in the Snow
5 layers of wool
can keep your heat
from fleeing for a
few moments

The branches are
heavy as your feet
with snow

The world is at
your back and
before you and
the white world
unseen will pass
as time takes her

The white world
is at your frigid feet
and steps must be
taken

The cold
it burns

You're burned and
you keep burning
This poem is named for "The Hunters in the Snow," a 1565 oil-on-wood painting by Pieter Brueghel the Elder.
The day he locked himself out is not specific, a
Monday or a Thursday, some square on some calendar
I tossed in the trash years ago.

We lived in a small white house yards off a small suburban street. I dubbed it The White House. I cannot remember how many of my holidays passed inside. It's all stuck in fog.

Some time later my mother and brother and myself moved not a quarter mile from The White House; a trailer park, owned by Aunt Charlene and her callousness. She cares deeply for my mother. I still pass The White House as I drive to my great-grandma's home, years later. It is hidden from the street, all branch and leaf and overgrowth, flora hiding its face from the cars and their people, the birds, sunlight, illumination.

My great-grandmother's eyes are thick with a knowledge I am fortunate to not possess. Great-grandma. My father's grandma. Mother told me he began to drink when Grandpa Jesse died and never managed to shelf it. I meditate on my genes. My great-grandma is 84-years on this earth. I have trouble bringing myself to talk to her.

It is so much. So fast. I am a man now—not grown, hardly seasoned, no hint of gray—of 21-years. I have not seen my father since I started smoking. I wonder, now, following all these years of silence what, exactly, we might have to say to one another. He may ask about my girlfriend: I may ask of his. Years apart, a ridged gap, and yet still a kinship, some foreign hurt deeply threading the vein.

The malignancy of feelings.

I bury my anger and let it age, whiskey soaking in the oak, cultivating a taste, a character, an identity. I cannot change this. It is my blood. I will always bear his name. He may die before me. I will always bear his name.
724 · Dec 2012
Bloodline
If ever you find yourself
surrendering to the darkness,
look to me—

Listen.
I will never claim I can save you,
Lord knows I can't save myself,
but I know, for a second, our
eyes carry a comfort the dark
has no power to put down.

Listen.
There is nothing that can
divide the bloodline that streams
into our hearts when we touch
skin, when we grasp and
piddle at the wind, searching
for a safe breeze to cart us home.

Home.
Fields of lilies, dayflowers, marigolds,
things we thought were silly before.
Look at us now, prancing about
like the couples we made fun of
not so long ago—love was a virtue,
not tangible bliss. We can touch it.
It whispers of springtime.

If ever you find yourself
surrendering to the darkness,
look to me—

I will swear to whomever will
listen that I will never again
be that far behind you.

Dear.
There is always light; it is simply
a matter of opening one's eyes
and finding it.
722 · Dec 2014
Funnelmouth (V)
I wish I could write poems of distraction. I sit all day in rooms and there are times I am outside and it feels unnatural. I am curious to the state of my insides. Sleep is not reliable. Dreams are not patient.

It is night and it is cold, and as I look up to stare at stars and planets I see car crashes. Orion totalled by a Chevy Cobalt. A pickup dislodging each dipper and sending them reeling to infinity, smacking empty space.

Cold nights are cleansing. I need more time to think. There is so much to be thought, isn't there, so much potential just floating around, pathless, empty. The season will not change for a while. I must build a fire and warm myself.
714 · Feb 2016
Do You Want To Be Here?
How sad must I make myself?
When petty annoyance turns to
dust, a swirl of caster oil on my
tongue, need I stab in infinite
direction for something to grasp
onto?

When does blood end and choice
begin? How much *** must I smoke
to stop paying attention? Do you want
to be here?

The answer is assuredly No.
I know because I know you.

You will numb yourself until the
little tiny hairs of your forearm
rise and prickle and beckon for
sunlight, escape from dark room
of blanket piles and ***** clothes.

Do you want to be here?
The answer is in the How.
Should I keep projecting or
wear my insecurities on my sleeve
like a good boy, feelings and
resolve and dedication to family?

Where did my poem go?
Does it want to be here?
Should I pull it up from the
ether, all hot ember and critique,
or might I let it flounder and
drown, all not together and
scatterbrain, best left on edit table
in drunken somberness and
existential envy, slow motion.

Do you want to be here?
I am asking for a friend.
710 · Dec 2012
Haiku #001
And I said to her
Those lips could tear worlds apart
as she smiled that smile.
705 · Dec 2012
Virgin Sea
I remember your naked body
like it was yesterday,
bending about your bedroom, quiet as
drifting rose petals stripped straight out
of a summer sunset sky.

I remember our naked bodies,
touching in discovery, swimming oceans
between ourselves we never fathomed
into existence; never questioned out of it.
For the first time, I felt at home—at sea.
Innocence no longer played part.

After the crescendo, I saw the clock beside
us on your nightstand. I used it as an excuse.
"I really should leave, it's getting late," knowing
full and well that she could see right through it,
right through me. I lept through the doorway,
sparing a look back, parting with my shame.

I got home and ate pizza with my family.
My mother and father chuckled about a newscaster.
My brother and I bickered about housework.
I went to my room after dinner and collapsed on my bed.
I wept as my eyes surrendered to darkness.

I am lost at sea—and so is she.
670 · Nov 2012
Tattoos
On her arm, the tower of Pisa bumps back and forth with her swollen sleeves.
On her back, standard holometabolous insect flutter flames it’s way heavenward.
Her thighs house songbirds, yellow, flightless—beauty is her.
A cobra draped around her neck; an olive branch psyching back, rearing it's head, infinite.

Her body is a shrine of shadowy ink.
Her cheeks have become temples.
I lie my faith in them alone.
662 · Jun 2016
14 things
14
Every song or sonnet
singular in its intricacy,
in time it becomes something
other, hyper-personal and resonant.
14 things may burst into millions.

13
Three times I've felt alone
this minute. I should stop tallying
hours in my schedule, messy
rubric.

12
11-years old and jumping off
mud-mounds, playing King of the
Hill. The strongest rises to the top.
The cleverest usurps.

11
One thing for certain:
we are human. We are
not human.

10
Six times in school I got
detention. It was often due
to my willingness to be a
follower, silly sheep to a
slaughter.

9
Five languages of love we are
sure of, no more so far.

8
10 tally marks looks a lot
like less. Some things, like
people, refuse to show their
face.

7
13 is supposedly an unlucky
number. At this age I uncovered
a part of myself I did not know
before. Discovery. This is luck.

6
A dozen is meant to represent 12
because it is simpler, same syllables
only one less letter, a convenience.

5
If you flip an eight on its side
you can see forever.

4
Seven times I've thought this poem
gimmicky.

3
[redacted for time constraints
and continuity]

2
The artist places her pen to
paper and borrows, not stealing
so much as salvaging, wrapping
old presents in neat new bows,
satin or silk or rough twine.
Nine variations on the same
subject.

1
Four lids harbor two eyes,
a galaxy, universe,
each hiding half a heaven
from view.
652 · Mar 2017
Untitled (03.31.2017)
Outside the crop has wintered,
tall husks of green lopped over
and fumbling for sunlight.
        There are rules to the arrangement.

The limits of energy and
abundance, lost somewhere in
a fray of hot sound, cold
        Frame for the crop to weather.

Let it slip away. Humble yet
whorish for warmth, bare skeleton
of being from which to frame the
        Praying, hand scraping concrete.

Find that voice. Put it in a box.
Punt that box into oblivion, a fire
of sunlight, warmth, a burning skeleton
        Begging for life; hollow shell.
642 · Feb 2016
Sunday
I am guilty of overthinking
a sunrise, some certain
moment of minuscule
collaboration between brain
and dirt, ***** truth of it
being I am unable to think
past my own two eyes
but able to fathom a sun
setting and not fretting
whether or not it is to rise
when I wake.
637 · Jan 2015
Red
Red
Should the ache dull,
consummate the liver,
fulfill desire,
I refuse to stop it.

I keep feeling the whole day in one pinch.

Perhaps writing should not render in burst
format as it ****** and rots.

Rothko knew pain was art because to Rothko
it was all art.
He would not budge, stood stooped in
knee-deep-scarlet splash-stained denim
begging all to see the colors through him.

Rothko paints mountains with pulses in
red rectangles.
634 · Dec 2012
Haiku #004
The irony of
a smoking awareness stand
yielding free cupcakes.
Write in stanzas. Think in stanzas.
Speak in stanzas. **** your routine.
Sleep less. Go to work drunk.
Yell at inanimate objects. Yell with
inanimate objects. Fly your mother to
San Francisco (coach) and watch the
house for her, the dogs, the child, the
drunk. She is your mother.

You do not like your job. Spend
your days beneath an apple tree and
spend your workdays eating apples
in any given weather. Lie on the floor
of your bedroom belly-flat and smell
the carpet beneath you, all dead flakes
of skin and dog fur, sinew strand of
hair, black dots—tar or shoe-gum or
something other.

Think on your place. Reach to the left,
your side table with glass of water and
lampshade. Feel the hilt, small knife for
your pocket, small pocket. Free the blade,
feel the grooves, gold and blacked-brushed
blade you bought with a flask, a set, two
tiny commodities that may serve you well
in the wild or a shopping mall, what ever
little evils exist away from your bedroom
with its television and soft blankets, slow
mortal shuffle and modicum.

Stop and breathe. Feel the heart in its
always-patter. Know it will stop.
Not fret, no, only knowing.
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