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2.5k · Mar 2013
Tolstoy in passing
Paul Glottaman Mar 2013
There is a mirror image
but does it still
look like you?
Do you stand before
the altar of your bathroom
sink and whisper,
but not yet"
There isn't time
to pause
to think
to wonder.
Is there a ghost in this machine?
Is there a need
to put a notion
behind the gears
of our universal,
cosmic meme?
And were we to drown,
weighed down by
hanging lines and
the thousand stupid ways
that we try to prove
our opinion matters,
*******! Hear me!
Look my way!
We fade to nothing,
ashes in pots
on mantle places,
dry bones in wet dirt.
We are all good people,
bound for modest graves.
Undone by ambition.
that is always the way"
We are small men,
good in our minutes a day.
We are Tolstoy in passing,
In a Gethsemane way.
2.5k · Dec 2010
The meeting.
Paul Glottaman Dec 2010
Tonight, my god, tonight!
I will meet you,
the first and last time.
Your cloak and dagger
existence, your
pallor of decay,
your dark dreams.

I will walk from this
comfort to the hill
by the moon.
Water rushing somewhere
below us.
I will find you there.
Patiently waiting.
Chess board before you,
sickle in hand.

I will meet Death tonight.
I will laugh at him,
turn my nose at him.
I will take the challenge.
I will rise to the occasion.

Tonight, my god Tonight!
I will be immortal.
1.9k · Sep 2011
Paul Glottaman Sep 2011
Put upon me, if there are things
that will fit
(once there),
all the issues that you have saved,
for later days and open ended calls,
that must be solved.

If it were simple, and we both
know it is not,
then I expect that most would
have told you
(by now at the
very least)
how it really ought to
have turned out.

You have impressed me with your
perfect imperfections and I can only hope,
each held breath is anticipation of our
day, that you will find in me
broken pieces of a man
which you will adore
(in kind.)

We are all blind through this life.
Heads held high or low, or which ever way
keeps them out of sight, so that we may be
seen and not feared.
But in this blindness we are two,
where one would probably do,
and there is so little
(about that)
worth changing.
1.8k · Apr 2014
Paul Glottaman Apr 2014
She would rub her feet,
in socks alone,
across the carpet.
She would carefully touch
nothing on her way out,
or at school.
Then she would reach out to him.

She had heard the myths
about love at first sight.
About a bolt of electricity
passing from one person
to another.
She tried so hard to recreate it.
To fake it.

Years later she would stare
out at the city from her
apartment and wonder
what tomorrow would bring.
She had become part
of a system that ignored her,
but she was used to that kind
of system.

At night she would write.
Fiction her plaything.
She would write stories
but she didn't let people
read them, because they
couldn't know that, this too,
was a part of who she was.

She had learned that
other people killed dreams.
With countless kindness.
They would talk about
how talented she was
until she felt confident.
But never confident enough
to show a publisher.
She liked her audience small
and appreciative.

Later still she would look
back on her life and wonder
what would happen if she
stood up and took the
Could she have moved,
with just her words,
other people to see her?

Could she have been
Her thoughts,
her words,
moving from her
to another,
like love.
1.7k · Apr 2011
Paul Glottaman Apr 2011
You are a crucible,
within you are the ingredients
that will coalesce into such
wonderful shape and form.
I am an unlit pyre aching to burn

Find the spark that will
push me to ignite.
Feel for the pressure that
will force your contents to unite.

You will make forever in your own shape.
A fine thing it will be.
People will look on your
achievement and inundate
you with deserved praise.
You are more than a glorified stain.
You are permanent. You will last.

I am almost nothing.
I will blaze for such a short time.
Ash and dust and nothing.
But, my god,
my friend,
my love,
I have such a gift for you.

Watch as I burn.
1.4k · Jan 2011
Doodling in life tones.
Paul Glottaman Jan 2011
Place mats covered in doodles
have defined all of my outings with
friends and loved ones.
With pen and the blank spaces
around the adverts
I will push a new world into
this tired realm.
Here are people without
their hands chained to the
baggage of their lives.
Here are perfect people.
I wonder if they have belly buttons.
I wonder sometimes if I
have any control over them at all.
1.3k · Jun 2011
Paul Glottaman Jun 2011
Battered by the words
thrown my way I hesitate.
I know what needs to be said.
I know how to defend myself.
I know how to fix that tired
arrogant smile of yours.

You never walked the mile.
Never carried the load.
You never faced down the barrel.
Never lived as a boy without sanctuary,
or as a man without a hometown.
Nine words never changed your life.
Six seconds never changed your world.
Love never found you, and you’ve never
hunted for it, not in earnest.

The sacrifices for friendship are a burden
to you. Do you even know how truly
pathetic that is? Could you ever?
You’ve never fought in the night,
or run throughout the day.
Never let your blood stain
those you trust so that their own
might be spared.
Never so much as lifted a selfless finger
in repent of your nine selfish ones.
Never been so happy someone died
instead of you, only to hate yourself for it.

You are a boy. A man child.
Hold onto that arrogance.
I could blow it away with a
sentence. I could show you a world
where love and trust and hope are
tantamount to survival.
The world is cold and dark and
amazing and you haven’t the barest
idea at all.

I open my mouth.
I close it.
Sleep well, you sad
1.3k · Oct 2010
Dance with me.
Paul Glottaman Oct 2010
The gears have spun their
final rotation.
The beat of this place has
finally died down.
Now we dance.
There is a song that
shoots from our core.
A rhythm that we spend
our entire lives denying.

Step charts discarded, we
pave the world beneath our
unsure foot falls.
I swear to god that I lived once.
Now, if only for these moments,
these short and wonderful
seconds, I will push my face
through the obstinate surface
of this dying rock and
I will live again!

It is blue and here I am in
the middle of it.
Bleed your hues into me.
Free this romantic from the
tired bones of this warrior's flesh.
Pace before me, let the hunger
wash over you, let it come.
Rip from me the beating essence
of this song.

I will be yours forever in this
moment, if only you will
follow me. If only you will close
your eyes and put your hand in mine.
I can take you to the streets in
my head. To the heaving city
alive behind these green eyes.

Give me the chance. Forgive me
the past, the indecision, the
false steps, the wayward consequences
of my misspent life.
I will burn the world down,
leaving tinders in my wake,
blaze your name across the face
of our worthless world.

Dance with me.
1.3k · Aug 2011
Hannah remembered.
Paul Glottaman Aug 2011
You'll always be twenty-three.
And that kills me.
You were older than me.

******* the futility of it all.
******* ******* it all!
I wish that I could punch a hole
in the world with my words and
find you.
I wish you knew.

I just wanted to tell you..
I just thought you needed to know,
at least once before everything is
broken headlights and crushed
Blood and pavement and a median.
Crushed glass and a world
standing hollow without you.
I wish you knew.

I think I loved you once.
I need to find you some days.
**** this tired world and it's
arbitrary thefts.

Your name should have a million hits a day.
You should have been...
My god how brilliant you were.
Like a jewel and like a genius.
You should have been forever.

I guess, in a way, you are.

You were a part of my life,
and a much bigger part than I ever would
have had you believe.
Did you know that? Had you figured it out?
Perhaps not.

A year since. Fifty-two weeks.
More in fact.
It was May.
Day after my brother's birthday.

******* it.

You were older than me.
October to my November.
One month that you lorded over me.
One month.

You'll always be twenty-three.
1.1k · Feb 2011
Paul Glottaman Feb 2011
If you were a place
you’d be a temple in Tibet.
You’d be cold as ice,
and hard to reach.
You’d be fraught with
danger and legend.
I could get lost for days
with no attention or
You would be a secret
temple in the mountains
of Tibet.
I would find you looking
for an answer, a cure
a purpose. Looking
for completion and peace.
I would leave
whole and calm
and perfect.
1.1k · Aug 2010
Paul Glottaman Aug 2010
With a single sentence
he sent them to their deaths.
He knew what it was,
he knew what it meant.
He now understood
the ruthlessness of war,
the sacrifice of victory.

There was a time when he was normal.
Just a kid, like we have
all been at some time or
another. Gazing into the sky,
envying the birds their flight.
Dreaming of a future he had
absolutely no reference for.
He had no perspective.
He would be young forever.
Wouldn't we all?

The burden on his shoulders
was too massive to control.
Most days he would sink in it.
Wallow in that place
between dreams.
He couldn't be touched there.
He couldn't be asked to
decide. He was free
from that horrible

But it would be back.
It always was. They would
look to him, as their world
fell apart, and he was expected
to have the answers.
To have the resolve.
He was expected to order
his friends into danger,
to order them into eternal
silence. And it was accepted
that his word was law.

He had made so many mistakes.
So many ******* mistakes.
He had failed to see the bigger
picture. He had failed to
see the end coming.
It was here now. And what terrified
him the most wasn't the battle,
wasn't the fear, wasn't
the impending doom.
It was the quiet acknowledgment.
The smooth, calm
smile on his face.

It was the end of everything,
and he was ready for it.
1.1k · May 2011
A toast.
Paul Glottaman May 2011
Muscles strain with the effort, each one
fit to burst from this skin in protest of the
things I do for you.
When I saw you falling by I couldn’t
help but to throw out my arm for you
to grab. I will anchor you to safety.
Sometimes I think that this act,
rescuing you, is all I know.

A toast!
To those buildings from our lives
which at times meant so much,
and how we saw them torn down.
To those people, who we loved and
hated and ignored and couldn’t be
away from, and to how we stood
by to see them torn apart.
A toast to the rips and tears.

When I’m not around, and this dark world
looms like death about your aspect,
how do you go on?
Do you have a bevy of pretenders,
waiting in the wings to assume the mantle
of hero for you, at your beck and call?
I think not.
No, the state that I always find you in.
Teetering on oblivion. Breathing in your
own acrid impending ruin.

A toast!
To the victimless crimes that always
find themselves a victim.
To the altruist with ulterior motives.
To the new car with seven hundred miles on it.
A toast to the rut I find you in.

How could I do anything other than rebuild you?
I sit and cobble you from the heart break
you discovered on you path to forget or forgo.
With delicate hands and loose calculations
I will rend you into a form that resembles
yourself, and when I am done I will
walk away.
You have never once thanked me.

A toast!
To the victimless victim of
self inflicted crime.
To those torn down and made whole
To buildings wrecked and replaced.
To the occasional altruist with
understandable ulterior motives.
1.0k · Nov 2010
Wise man's folly.
Paul Glottaman Nov 2010
Today I told a secret.
Yesterday I lied.
I read an inscription,
in someone else's book.
It told a tale about the folly
of the wise.
I'm hoping to find solace,
in a remote place.
Instead I find noise/chaos
with a friendly and familiar face.
There was a song you used to sing.
I don't recall the words.
I used to sing it in the shower,
and fantasize about being king.
Turnabouts fair play,
my god the things we used to say.
1.0k · Nov 2010
Paul Glottaman Nov 2010
There are bodies in motion.
Bumping into one another,
as they drift through time
and space.
Each new contact creates
a slight deviation in their course.
They spin off, tangentially.

Here in this city, where
ambulances sirens make
the sour notes of our love
song, I sit missing you.
Missing the contact.
Missing our slight deviations.
1.0k · Sep 2011
Paul Glottaman Sep 2011
Forever you have been the opposite side
of the coin that is us.
Brazen with life and love and anger
where I am alight with the same,
though in different measured amounts.
We don't finish each other's sentences,
and there exists no reason why we should.
But we do share the same content in our
bold paragraphs, the same feed in our blood.


Blood was never a choice, but friendship is,
and you are unique in that we share both.
You are a brother, a confidant, a partner in crime,
a friend, a conspirator, a business partner,
and so much more.
People remark about the nature of our bond,
and admittedly they get it wrong often,
but they remark frequently.
Too close to be normal,
too extraordinary to be labeled.

Follow where I lead and I will
follow your lead.
Such is our nature.
We seem two circling wolves.
We seem to vie for dominance.
How is it then that we are both and neither?

Who could I trust more with my secrets?
Who could I trust more with my life?
Who could I trust more with my lies?

So we circle.
So we vie.
So we live.
So we die.
984 · Nov 2010
Paul Glottaman Nov 2010
There is a huge portion of
his leg missing.
He has a cane these days,
though he didn't used to.
He hobbled up the streets
of the Catonsville intersection,
even beat me and my car to Towson
He did this during the triple
blizzard. During the crippling
heat wave. During the frost
covered fall mornings now.
Always his sign reads
“God bless you.”
Always he smiles a genuine
smile, all the way to his eyes,
when even the most limited
amount of change drops into
his ***** palm.

His skin shines with the dirt,
beyond age or race he is filthy.
The skin around his wound has
begun to turn green.
I've asked him, for me, to see
a doctor. Told him I'd wait with
my car if he wanted to take
the home boy express.
He can't afford to be off the streets.
For him, if for no one else,
time is money.
No matter how small.

I worry for him.
But only for an hour a day.
And only because guilt is easier
to manage than shame.
I have heard all the arguments.
All the cynical stabs and jabs,
and I confess that I have agreed.
But for an hour a day
I still worry for him.

I'm glad someone gave him a cane.
His leg looks bad.
Worse than ever.
980 · Feb 2013
Altar of Lies.
Paul Glottaman Feb 2013
Stone me on your Altar of Lies.
I am not scattered light upon the stair!
You're all stuffed mouths and hollow eyes,
Spun from whole cloth but left bare.

The ****** never stirred, but only watched me leave.
Where's the Watchmaker for his Meek?
Tell me, where's the freedom in your Mustard Seed?
How can this be the Love we're meant to seek?

I am no Lamb!
I won't have your Love!
I couldn't give a ****,
and you, sir, are no Dove!

All seen equal, except those You exclude.
Let's not tout the best of us?!
I can see the cunning, you are shrewd.
But that still just leaves the rest of us.

'Cause what're we but broken people?
Empty lives and Original Sin!
Gird your *****! Guard your Steeple!
This is a club I won't belong in.

*Don't you preach to me
with ***** ******* hands
Holy love and His truancy.
You issue His commands.
972 · Feb 2011
Paul Glottaman Feb 2011
Fall would bring down the
leaves and reveal the
entrances to their secret
tree forts.
They would wave *******
in their faces and pretend that
the early morning steam
of their breath was cigarette smoke.
They would laugh like maniacs
when the teacher wasn’t looking,
and be as quiet and innocent
as babies when he was.
The sun gone down, the last
inning played and the first
street lamps came on they could
be found under blankets,
reading scary stories by flash light.

When the winter arrived
they slept near the cold
glow of televisions.
Tomorrow screamed of
Baseball, and school books,
and notes passed in class
to the girls they pretended
to hate.
It would beg them to throw
off their shoes and feel
the sun warm blacktop
on their bare feet.
It would whisper secrets
of life, new things discovered.

When spring came around they
would chase through the
tall grass, looking for Pokemon.
They would accuse each other
of contracting cooties from
their spring fever addled crushes.
They would send away UPCs
from the backs of their comics
for the prizes, treasures untold.
In the evenings they would study,
and write and miss the summer.

As summer finally came they
would gather together, their
days at long last free for planning.
They would make additions to their
tree houses, tell fictional stories
about how far their old crushes
had let them get.
They would wrap on the side
of the old TV every Saturday morning,
when the static interrupted the cartoons.
Tennis ***** were made for bouncing
off the sides of houses.
When the air grew cold at night
they would string a clothes line
between their beds and the wall.
A sheet hung on it made an excellent
tent, a flash light a fine camp fire.
They would tell each other
what they would do when they
grew up.
941 · Nov 2011
The cup of tea.
Paul Glottaman Nov 2011
You went upstairs to go to bed,
but you never came back.
Or rather you didn't come back
under you own power.

It was MEs, stretchers,
and tear stained sunrises we never
saw from the kitchen floor
where we wept.

The arrangements were made,
open casket confessions and so little else.
You were ashes by the days end.
No mantel piece resting place.

Because it's not fair.
Because nothing ever is.
Because you were so young,
because we weren't ready.

Because your love was so vast
that it would light up the room.
Because you taught us to close our hands
and catch starlight in between our fingers.

There is a hole in my soul.
An error in my morning light.
I can still smell the tea.
How you loved strong tea...

"Black as the night and
sweet as a stolen kiss."

Memories of your made up language,
the one so few of us knew fluently,
will always dance in my brain.
To think, I failed Spanish.

When, days later, we opened the microwave
to find your cup of tea,
the one you left out every night,
you were such a fan of strong tea...

How are we supposed to go on?
Where will the hand be that is meant to guide?
I had never cried over tea.
I had never cried over much of anything.

Imagine my surprise,
my sweetest mentor,
my treasured care giver,
when my shoulders began to shake.
941 · Sep 2011
Occam's Razor.
Paul Glottaman Sep 2011
Occam's Razor blades burn through the air
around us.
Because You blush when you laugh.
Because I pay attention when I joke.
So ******* obvious.
Because I swell to see you,
and you meet me among the clouds.

Frustra fit per plura quod potest fieri per pauciora


I can't tell you. I've told you a million times.
But it's too hard to say it right.
The words are difficult.
I love you like a religion.
I worship you with the devotion of the faithful.
I know, the atheist claims faith.

I love you like the spot behind the
living room recliner that a dog hides
behind during a thunderstorm.
I love you like a thunderstorm.
I love you with the depth of an
Irish song about heartbreak.

I don't know how to do anything else.
Because you blush when you laugh.
Because I notice.
Because I...

So ******* obvious.
940 · Jan 2011
Paul Glottaman Jan 2011
Through this window there is light.
I cupped it in my hands,
careful to keep my fingers
from opening.
I dropped it into that old
soda bottle I kept around,
for reasons you never understood.
I hide it under my bed,
wrapped in a scarf I had left
over from that cold winter.
It’ll be my sunshine.
Mine and mine alone.
Of course, if you whisper
the right ***** jokes,
throw the right smile,
kiss me under the stars
until I feel like that boy with his
soda bottle of sun rays again,
if you will do these things for me:
I will fish under my bed,
unravel the scarf,
unscrew that lid
and finally, after all these
years, I will watch the
sunlight dance around
this room with you.
924 · Nov 2010
Late night Adventure.
Paul Glottaman Nov 2010
The window is rolled down halfway
so I can let the ash off my cigarette.
The music, which holds special
meaning to us and faceless others
who have been touched by it,
blares from the dying speakers.
The yellow lines snake ever onward,
winding parallel to each other.
Forever yearning to meet and always
being denied.

The sun went down so long ago
that it is daring us to watch it rise.
We are six cans of monster, two packs
of Red 100's and eight hours past
caring what the fickle thing decides to do.
We are also two days past the desire to
sleep at all.

We tell jokes, poking fun of the things
we don't dare in polite company.
Enjoying the kind of monsters we can
only be around each other.
We share tales of our ****** deviations,
more candid than we've ever been to
anyone else. The lesser experienced,
namely me, blush profusely at the
notion of where parts of us have been.
We lament lost love, unmitigated failure,
wasted potential and the million little
white lie excuses for why we've yet to
become the icons we dreamed ourselves.

When finally sleep begins to win the
battle for control of our eye lids
we take turns behind the wheel.
The window is never rolled up, although
I'm the only smoker aboard.
It's constant noise a reassurance that we
are still moving.
Though in what direction is anyone's guess.

We'll know our destination when we
get there. We'll know when our bodies
cry for food, or *****, or our girlfriends
cry for us to come home.
Mostly we'll know when we can't
go any farther. When we have to turn

I'll always remember our late night
I'll be an old man, waiting on the
final stroke of any clock I'll ever
hear, and I'll still be listening for
the reassuring sound of wind rushing
past my half open window.
Still feel the cold in my fingertips.
Still feel the warmth and laughter
in my heart.
That has been your gift to me, my friends.
I cherish it always.
918 · Dec 2012
Red Flannel.
Paul Glottaman Dec 2012
I have these pieces,
remnants of you,
scattered through my life.
A jacket, red flannel,
which I am afraid to wear.
How do I measure up to it?
A series of cloth belts.
The rise of a man who
had, in a long ago,
in a far away,
mastered this art already.
Tucked in a box, a note in your
wife's handwriting,
like a treasure map,
laying out the path to take
to find the things
that are all I have you.
Because the photos aren't you.
You did not smile that way
in my memories.
The photos are a ******* lie
that tell the story of man
who grew old an abandoned
me on this **** planet
with these monsters shaped like men.
They are not you.

I look at my things,
my random crap...
What will I leave?
What of this crap, that I treasure,
will be me one day?

I can't find your voice.
Everything is disposable
all of a sudden
and I've come to find out
that we are too.
All of us.
We become the trash
that our children are afraid to
throw away.
The measure of our lives
a series of fuzzy memories,
photographs and knick knacks.
Possessions, sir.
That is what we become?

We are so much more.
Aren't we?
Of course we are.
I remember your hand on the
seat of my bike.
I remember the way that you
could laugh with your nose,
smile at us with your eyes.
Blue. They were so blue...
I think back on the lessons.
You taught me to love, sir.
Did I ever thank you for that?
Of course I didn't.
Of course.

You're a little wooden box
on the night stand next to my bed.
An envelope with my name on it,
the last of your handwriting I have.
You're an episode of the Power Rangers,
I know, I can't believe it either.
You're in the way I love, now.
The way I feel it, the way I show it.
The Experience that you taught me.
You're in the presence of a flannel jacket,
that I haven't earned the right to wear.
You're not in the photos,
you're not in the jacket;
Neither am I.
912 · May 2010
For Hannah. 1986-2010
Paul Glottaman May 2010
You'll never see this.
Jesus Christ, There is a finality in that.
I can't believe you're gone.
I can't believe you'll never see this.
I'm going to miss you.

I know it's flat sounding
but it's true.
You'll never know the impact
you had on my life,
how important it was
that I knew you.

You once said to me that
you were trying to build me
into something greater.
“A better Bonsai tree.”
I hated you more than I ever hated
anyone in that moment.
But the wisdom of your
words has shined through.

Though your hand was not there,
and was in fact joined by others,
my roots have been tended,
my branches bent in ways
subtle and amazing.
I stand this Earth as,
while not a lovely small tree,
a mature and compassionate man.

You will never know the
way you've crafted me.
You'll never know how I've
grown because of you.
You'll never see this.
There is such ******* finality in that.
906 · May 2010
North Carolina Shore, 2010
Paul Glottaman May 2010
The moon is a soft blue
colored gem, floating somewhere
above all of the worries and concerns
that fill, day in and day out,
the ever waking, eating, sleeping
hours of our lives.

It's quiet blue light reflects off the water,
mirroring it's hidden world without
complication on the now
molten lead waves as they crash
onto the half sand half pebble
beach on which they stand.

There are shouts in the distance.
A bonfire, beer wrapped in aluminum
and the company of people they
will meet only once and then never again.
Stories they will share,
no great secrets, but minor insights and
a shared sense of wonder.

Were you here, he would sing to you.
A song so wonderful and sad that
you would be as whales are. Communicating
in somber notes and ancient melodies.
The weigh of the song would pour tears
onto your pale white skin.
You would love him then,
as you had loved no other before.

As the waves fall on the hard and calloused
skin of his feet and knees sending cold shivers
up his body, he watches as the full moon
describes his world as a dream.
He marvels at the smells of salt water and the
slow rhythm of waves and beach as they meet
again and again throughout eternity.
Later he will be at the bonfire.

He will share stories that mean nothing
he will drink and dance, but he will not sing.
He will miss you. Wish you could see
what he does.
How can it ever be the same?
905 · Feb 2013
Paul Glottaman Feb 2013
Staked to the ground we find ourselves at
the crossroads.
Though no deal is to be struck,
no bargain arranged
and no promises kept.
This is a place for looking
and, if we are all very lucky,
a place for seeing as well.

Stand here with me, in these chains,
and sing me the song that is
the night.
Breath this starlight and look out
on the expanse of our ever
expanding universe.

Do you see it yet?

Pinned though we are,
wondering though we might,
we have to find the single spark,
we have to see the light.

It is here, in the darkness that we revisit.
That we revise.
That we dig it all up and decide.
Because tomorrow, thankfully not today,
we grow toward the sunlight
more efficiently,
as the people we have to be.

We are staked here, at the crossroads,
but when these pins are drawn,
our chains lifted,
we will soar the skies above the crossroads.
We'll wonder, one has to hope,
as we look down on the trail that
had become our prison,
The path here is crooked,
so many obstructions
too many hazards.
The paths lead nowhere...
How did we ever get around?
902 · Jul 2011
Considerably broken.
Paul Glottaman Jul 2011
Regret is a cornerstone on which we have built a lifetime.
Forced from shelter into life,
we live as though mistakes are not expected.
Show me the man,
who at the end of his life,
does not look back and wonder.
Were it not so easy to dwell on our missteps
we would have no room to grow.
We will never reach out and find that we have
always had perfect teeth,
proper endings,
promises kept.
We are small.
We are considerably broken.
Therein is our most valuable attribute.
We are people, **** it.
Whole and complete, with mistakes made,
doors slammed shut and no path but to the grave.
And how magical is that?
Live, always and everyday,
with the past behind you.
Tomorrow there are a million more mistakes
never to make again.
And marvel , my friend,
the glory of being small and considerably broken.
897 · Feb 2010
Scorched Earth.
Paul Glottaman Feb 2010
The world is on fire.
I wasn't sure if you had heard.
We used to walk these gardens,
before the flames arrived
to steal our memories of this place.
I used to think it was heaven.

Our lake.

I always thought you
would sit beside me.
Thought you would watch with the
same pent up rage as they
destroyed all that was pure.
You always hated when I
skipped stones, as though somehow
I had tarnished the surface of our lake.

Our lake.

What have we done?
You were never so far away.
Once I could reach out and
feel you there,next to me.
You made the wind beautiful.
I don't know if I ever told you that.
It seems a silly thing to think of now.

Our lake.

The world is on fire.
In no small part because of us.
I wasn't sure if you had heard.
I don't know how else to tell you.
I wasn't sure how else to put it out.
892 · Jan 2011
Paul Glottaman Jan 2011
Every year it gets farther away.
The cowardice, the jealousy,
the pain, the heartbreak,
the anger and the fear.
With time it seems so distant.
I don’t fall asleep facing the
door anymore.
I don’t dig inside myself
when trouble arrives,
or lament my station and it’s

It took so long to see
what this world could offer.
To find the wonder.
Now that I am here
I pride the ability to
wonder, to create, to think,
to dream and above all
else the power to endure.

Life is trial.
It is test and failure.
It is pain and affirmation.
Light is strong and good.
Wise and powerful.
But there is no teacher
as good as darkness.
This I know.

I find myself in search of
a mountain.
So I may preach my own
sermon on the mount.
To an audience of one.
I hope that if my words
carry the right gravity,
my volume high enough,
my content strong enough
that you will hear me.

My message would be clear:
Endure. Build this nest
inside, where no man can
reach, and hold it.
Each year past it will grow.
You will be so filled with hope,
so unafraid of the world
and the dark, ****** terrors
it has in store.
Endure, my friend.
There is so much to look
forward to.
890 · Jan 2011
Paul Glottaman Jan 2011
Count my life in penny and dime.
Measure my hours in tea.
Know the whole of me,
if you have the time,
using lengths of twine.

Keep me in your cage.
It’s comfortable in it’s own way,
if only for a very brief stay.
Kept too long and be met with rage.
So say Magi and Sage.

Run with me to a place far from here.
Hand in hand I can lead you.
Be with me, be strong, be true.
There is a time and place for cheer,
So I’ve been told, so I hear.
864 · Apr 2014
Raised by TV
Paul Glottaman Apr 2014
Cryptic warnings in
dusty old books.
Lose floorboards and
cuts from fishing hooks.
Memories that aren't mine,
transferred over airwaves
and across time.
Lifetimes of bitter motes
metered out and measured in
Television tropes.

Sam and Diane until Rebecca
moved in.
I recall Coach's signature move,
taking it on the chin.
Frank until Winchester,
Better or worse,
Hawkeye and Trapper/BJ
ever perverse.

It's not who I am.
Not steps I've taken.
I remember it crisp as
overcooked Bacon.
855 · Nov 2010
Love poem no.6
Paul Glottaman Nov 2010
I always liked fall.
It's a better word than
Leaves fall.
We fall.
I fell.

We do not glide into love.
We have no control of it.
I did not glide for you.
I fell for you.
Closed my eyes,
leaned backward,
took a deep breath
and fell into you.
Into us.

There is a hill.
It stands between there,
the who I was, and here,
the who I am.
It is large, it has odd
lumps in it and it smells
of leather and flowers.
Like spices and fruit.
Sin and altruism.
It smells like your hair.
It smells like your neck.
Like your skin.

I have long since landed
but every time you smile,
your slow and wonderful smile,
I can feel the weightlessness
of the ****** thing.

I will always fall for you in
the fall.
I don't care for the
vagueness of
847 · Jan 2011
Paul Glottaman Jan 2011
I have walked these halls,
through eight nights and nine days,
I have waded through
the lies and false promises
of these tired days,
in this tired time.

There are no great men,
and if there were who would
even welcome them?
Who would match?
There may have never
been a time for great men.

I will find the door,
thousands of them, all
the same color,
all the same width,
they all open on the same
******* place.
Still I wander, still
I search.
832 · Mar 2013
One of these nights.
Paul Glottaman Mar 2013
One of these nights...

I will race through broken homes
and closed doors.
I will feel the driving rain
against cold momentum.
I will reach out into the darkness
and know that your hand
will meet my hand.

I will feel around in dust bins
and old insecurities.
I will climb over mountains
of stone and of doubt.
I will believe you when you tell me.
I will try to.
I swear I will.

One of these nights...

I will watch the tail lights fade
into memories we make.
I will force away the guilt
I will...

...One of these nights.
830 · Jun 2010
Rare Ould Tymes.
Paul Glottaman Jun 2010
There was a time,
My God how you smiled.
Your perfect crooked teeth,
the freckles on your *******.

All of it, designed to keep me.
How I love to be kept.

Some nights, when there is no
noise in the hall, I think of you.
I wonder where you are, if you're
sleeping, if you're laying awake,
as I am, thinking of the other.

Even in this time, where conversations
are carried out blind on airwaves
and in text, I dare not call.
I don't want to wake you.

Ours is an odd kind of courtship,
this dance we do. Around each other,
around city limits and state lines.
Two drifter souls, trying so hard
to find intimacy.
Trying to find one another,
no matter how far our feet travel,
no matter the distance we put between
ourselves. We search for one

We lived together. Tried to
It wasn't the disaster we thought
it would be. So long as we
had each other. So long
as we didn't bother each other.

We feel like we bother each other now.
We keep our distance.
How we love our ******* distance.

I reach out for you some nights.
I try not to tell you that.
My hand, moving
of it's own accord, feels for your
warm body next to me. Searches
the cold, empty, silent sheets for you.
I try not to tell you that.

I don't know whose benefit I'm considering.
I don't want to hurt you, or
destroy us. We are too wonderful
too magical to mess up.
I just can't keep my feet from wandering
away. From bringing me places
I've never been.

I'm not in control of my hands and feet.
Not anymore.
It wasn't always this way.

819 · Sep 2011
But to Fly.
Paul Glottaman Sep 2011
Everything was silence,
waiting for my song.
Before there was a face
to meet your face there was
this tired man.

Within myself I felt the ripple
indicate that change,
whole and complete,
was waiting in the still air
between then and horrifying
******* Now.

Fight the pressure on your eyelids.
Push the dark away.
Feel around for the primal fear of death.
You may cower from it always,
but you may never again deny it.

Life is fire and pain.
It is see through flesh and
the dull ache of mending bones.
It is screams heard before the dawn
and so much courage.
So much love and so much gritted teeth.
So much stubborn justice.
So much missed time and perfect
accidents of arrival.
Life is love,
first and foremost.

So much comes down to timing,
and so much comes down to skill.
In between the two is where you can
find me.
The barrier is torn down,
but it remains in our hearts
and in our dreams.
I wonder if I am what it will take
to puncture the falling fog.

Where there was a void there is now
my presence. My feet on solid ground.
The world waits, poised to see what I do.
I look upon my city, from high and from low.
I feel the bile turn my stomach sour.
I hear the voice in my head shouting that
I'm insane.
I see them waiting and I leap.

How I hate to disappoint.
808 · Jan 2010
Paul Glottaman Jan 2010
With ease, with grace you slithered
into my air.
You breathed your chloroform,
noxious and stale
through the uneasy silence of this tiresome song.
The very word of your presence
chill and forgotten.
Quomodo Ego diligo vos.

The sheets are so cold,
I reach to feel you there.
Books and papers,
a cigarette case,
some silly stuffed **** thing,
left over one night.

Pulling pieces from a mason jar,
words and phrases.
The missive unclear.
Stashed away, here it can harm no one.
The letters familiar in hand.
Irgendwie Ich Liebe Sie , einmal nun jetzt

Oh that elegant flow.
The loops of a madman,
crazed and alone.
You taught him so many heartbeats.
Your long prattling song.

The painting rests by the end.
Short fevered work,
on one of the seldom afternoons alone.
I recall white walls,
toast with strawberry jam.
Loud, obnoxious music.
Brushes in water sticking out of an old can.

Who but I would remember?
Quomodo Ego diligo vos.
Now, perhaps more than ever.
Irgendwie Ich Liebe Sie , einmal nun jetzt

I feel you, wrapped in my skin.
A guest in my most earthly of homes.
Do you know how you intrude?
Even now, as the din has died down,
The curtains have closed.

A pen and the car keys,
insignificant things with no night table on which to rest.
Here, next to me have found a home.
Once there was you,
vile and lovely
warm on that side,
now abandoned.
Forgotten and cold.
Aborted as always.
Irgendwie Ich Liebe Sie , einmal nun jetzt
808 · Nov 2010
Super Hero
Paul Glottaman Nov 2010
I remember having to break
the binding so I could see
the full image.
I remember the pools of dark
shadow defining the world.
I remember the pithy banter,
long before I knew the word
was pithy.
I remember the smell of it.
The wonder.
I remember how fragile
the two staples that
held it together were.
I remember putting it
down and looking up
at my Uncle and telling him
that one day I was going to
be Spider-man.
Perhaps I remember best
him looking down at me,
smiling his knowing smile
and saying,
“Yes. Yes you will.”
803 · Feb 2011
Paul Glottaman Feb 2011
Years Ago:
We ran around in the snow for hours.
Shed our coats
and watched as the steam
rose from our skin
into the night sky.
We marveled at body heat
and cold air.

I crushed what was left of the snow
into a rain puddle
and stepped on it.
It felt violent and wonderful.
I watched as the water
moved the tread prints
further and further apart.

You’re miles away,
watching the snow melt.
You’re looking at your phone,
wondering if you should call.
If I’m free. If I miss you.

All the time:
There is no window to
the past, no way to reclaim
what we built, there is
only now.
There is only the horror
and the glory of now.
I miss you, more than you know.
But I am not free.
I may never be.
789 · Sep 2011
We walk (When it ended.)
Paul Glottaman Sep 2011
When the snow came we sheltered ourselves away.
Warm by the pyres.
We let them burn.
Cinder and ash.
The dying light of our fires,
like a hundred stars swaying,
winking almost, against
the banks of snow covered hills.

Deep in our slumber we felt the
touch of warm spring.
Water cool enough to swim in.
Blue and green and milk white.
In waking, and we did so with protest,
there remained only the gray white
of winter dawn and the ****** cold.

When one of us fell, frostbite or exhaustion and little else,
we would carry them along.
Burials impossible, we added
their number to the pyre.
In this way we could keep warm.
In this way we could pretend that
we still felt human and alive.

Some days the snow was hard enough to
stand on.
Other days it was clean enough to eat.
Still we walked.
Always, it seemed, we walked.
Always we.

In the heat of desert day we would fan
ourselves with our hands.
We didn't dare to remove any .
We didn't dare not to stop to drink.

We wrapped our heads in cloth and
worshiped long forgotten gods.
On days when we couldn't move through
the sand storms we made camp.
We were once many.
We were so many.

Now we are walking.
If this trudge toward oblivion
could be called walking.
And walking we called it.
We would stop to smile lies
at one another.
We would stop to die.

Forgotten as old gods.
Less than the sand we died on.
Less than the whole.

And we would be left were we left.
We didn't bury anyone.
We were so many.

Call to me, for I can only just hear you.
Call for me
and I will come.
I will find you against odds and
I will see you whole.
I will breath you complete.

We awake to movement.
We are movement.
Ever walking, ever here and there.
Looking, we believe.
We believe in nothing.

There are those that want our things.
Our sad detritus.
Our lives before it ended.

Incomplete decks of playing cards.
Eye glasses with lens missing.
A license plate from an old car.
(They are all old cars.)
Mason jars, soda bottles,
cans, thermos, can of peanuts
all filled with water.

It's the water they want from us,
though they will take the other things.
They always take the other things.
Memories and dust.
Memories and Dust.
Cinders and Ash.

We were many.

When finally we are alone,
the leaves fall about us.
The moon hangs in our imperfect sky.
In the end there is us.
And the end is us.
And we?
We are alone.
We were many.
We are one.
775 · Nov 2010
In dreams.
Paul Glottaman Nov 2010
Fractured light cascades in.
                     Flowing, ever wider, ever wilder
          with each passing moment, leaving
great pools of heaving color on the desk by
the notebooks I refuse to keep.


There stands a building, overrun
by the very nature it once fought
so proudly to keep out.
It's walls hardly more than crumbled
stone, it's staircase, hard white concrete
interspersed with moss.
You keep a cozy home here.
Your beagles run about, guiding
lost or lonely travelers to your
warm and inviting den.


The hallway was long, dark and
under water. The people floated about
still trapped frozen in the moments
that must surly have been their last.
At it's greatest spots the roof is so
high, the tile so dense that it
seems like a subway, a train station.
The blue lips of the people around me
seem to whisper pleasant lies.
Seem to call me, as though a touch
could wake them from forever sleep.

The sun's rays do not touch these places.
                     They do not know my works.
         How could they? Why would they? They don't belong.
The light breaking in are from the passing ambulances, cabs
and cars. Sounds I have learned to ignore.


We are never more pathetic than when we
are swinging. Each time we hang back, we let
our heads dangle. It feels like that moment
when we lean our chairs back in class.
Proudly stride on two legs, and know
absolutely know that we are very near
to death. We reach through the world around
us, bending the color and light, forcing the
air from our skin and our bones and we hold
on to each other. We are so very near death.
We are so young, so close.
We swing on, and we open the same door,
again and again, only to find it still


My teeth are falling from my head.
They are healthy, they are wonderful
bright and shiny white, like they never
are, and they are falling from gums.
New ones grow in, without the irritating
itch that I remember from my youth,
but with bursting skin and a lack of blood.
They come in immediately. When I look up there is
food. So much food, the smell is so good.
But my teeth, my new teeth They are
too dull to chew. Soon they are falling out
as well. I shove them back in, pushing
them hard through the broken gums
but they won't stay. I don't know why
they won't stay.

When I open my eyes to the dull buzz of the alarm
                     My head swims, my brain reaches for the
         last few remaining images. It tries to put them in order,
tries to make sense of them. But nothing seems to fit.
There is only me, the light, and the desk. My works are in order.
775 · Aug 2010
The Meek
Paul Glottaman Aug 2010
I have misread “meek”.
I thought it was the wise, but weak of
skill, of body. Rich in mind.
Brilliant, crafty and clever.
It was us, we were promised to
inherit the Earth.

I have come to realize that I was
naïve, young, and a little too hopeful.
Now, with jaded eyes, and a cynical
heart I realize, only now, that it was
never meant to be us. The clever
are not meant to rise to the occasion.
It was always going to be the meek of mind.
Like it has always been.

We are outnumbered in a war I never realized
we were fighting.
How did this happen? How did I not see before?
The phrase that inspired hope during all
those years of catholic school, of
nuns hating my left handed writing, of
priests telling me that atheists like me
were horrible people.
All that time being told to look, but not see.
To listen but not think.
To move but not dream.

How did I not see?
“The meek shall inherit the Earth”
It's a warning. It was always a warning.
Paul Glottaman Aug 2010
The world, I have been told long ago
by people I have since forgotten or
hold dearly, runs on “Sometimes”.
Fueled by the occasion that exceeds expectation
or explanation. Once, in every life, if not
more often, we are all the exception
that proves the rule.
In these moments, when tears fall, or hearts
swell, when memory and present exist in the same
place, and impossibly at the same time, the world
itself heaves, shrugs and thanks us all
for the way we struggle.
How we long, how we need, to feel one more time,
or for the first time, the way we felt when...

Sometimes, with the lights dim and the rain
threatening an otherwise sunny sky, we reach
out our hands, and we hold onto the very fabric
of life and time and love.
We want to squirrel it away, secret if off to
some quiet place where we can visit it when we like
and live it when we need a reminder.
We know that we can't, that it's these moments,
these seemingly small or random moments of
epiphany or joy or pain or rage, it is these
Sometimes which make the world spin, which
make us spin.
So we release our hold on the stream, we relinquish
it to memory, locked inside ourselves we hold onto
this piece of providence. It is no longer real, it
does not breath with us as it once did,
but it is ours, forever, and no one will have it
from us. No one can.

If not for Sometimes, where would we be?
Life would be shallow, a dreamless place,
noisy and surrounding, but pointless.
It is the Sometimes that turn the gears of the
world, and it is the hope for Sometimes that
turns the gears of our worlds.
Let us turn The Gears of the World, as
only we can. Let us Sometimes, one day, and hope
until then.

The shadows of my past whisper to me,
The scared boy huddled, fetal, listening to the
violence from behind his locked door,
the weak kneed love struck teenager,
the confident man, holding his future
torch like before him, they call
to me, whisper words in my ear.
They say, or so I'm told, that the world
runs on Sometimes.
764 · Nov 2010
Paul Glottaman Nov 2010
It all basically happened in Vegas,
Which is to say it was outrageous.
But when the car pulled away,
and we examined the remains of the day,
it turned out what most of us had was contagious.
I've always wanted to try different styles of poetry, or any kind of poetry aside from free verse, but I'm not really a poet by nature. Limerick seemed like the thing to try to break new ground.
749 · Mar 2013
A wild thing.
Paul Glottaman Mar 2013
Eat your fill from
the fat of my land.
Shackle my bone
break my hand.
Leave this place to me,
when you go.
You weren't there,
but I don't know.

In a forest
we two meet.
Stars ad nauseum,
but no sleep.
And here and there
go our feet.
No words
compromise this greet.

Lose yourself
in the music of now.
Pull on the ribbons,
make me bow.
But don't forget me
when you leave.
Broken man,
his heart on his sleeve.

Could you catch
a wild thing?
Could you tug
it's heart string?
Could you keep
a wild queen or king?
On our fingers,
bound by this ring.

Goose bump flesh
will be our warning.
Keep my soul
trapped in this morning.
And find me waiting
as I always do,
hoping the next person
to come along is you.

Reach for me
when I'm not there.
Feel my fingers
in you hair.
Step by step,
side by side we ascend a stair.
All these things, and more,
I cannot bear.
741 · May 2014
Paul Glottaman May 2014
I see my city from a distance,
small points of light inscribe
the shapes of it's skyline against
a dark blue and purple night
and I know I am near home.
I lead a tired life
in ratty sneakers
and find myself on Pratt Street
well after the bars have closed
but before the sun.
I walk these streets and think
about the years of pavement
under my feet and the
people who populate my memories
and my city.
There are lives, being lead
in the quiet and ignored way
that city lives are,
behind every lit window.
My city isn't defined by
the height of it's buildings
and there is little neon,
but if you are very silent,
and more than a little patient,
you can hear her breathe.
My city is a portrait,
from Monument to Key Highway
and all points around and between.
I stand, in the stillness of the
streets well after the bars close,
and know that my story
has been played at different
points throughout her heaving mass.
And it is played now, by me and
the many millions like me.
We are a city united in our mutual
distaste and love for the buildings
and lights and cross streets
that house us and are our
Paul Glottaman Jun 2010
I have seen a man saved by a secret
another destroyed by a truth.
I have heard the halted
whispers as they cascaded
down the hall.
I have heard the mournful
melodies, and I have sang
them all.

There is a scratching at the door.
Once, then twice.

There have been different fears
which have coddled and gripped
us all.
Consume our thoughts and
drive actions, we can't
believe we've done, or saw.

Once, twice, three times on the door.
I hear that ******* scratching. I wish
to hear no more.

They swore that the nervousness
would pass.
A weak, meager thing,
bested without much effort.
It is here still. I can feel it in my
bones, moving with my skin.
Seething in my mass.
Calling through
the walls.

One, two, three.
One, two, three.
Simply maddening.

I keep a truth at arms length,
and a secret to keep me safe.
I keep it in my vest pocket,
where no one dare disturb.
There are two things,
of which I know are fact:
Life is a love song,
moving with grace and tact.
And life is a funeral march,
all attention rapt.
732 · Nov 2011
Every goddamn day.
Paul Glottaman Nov 2011
From every drop
springs just a little more.
An urgent pounding
against the bedroom door.
Because it's out with
the pilot light,
it's in with the
same old fight,
and it's back to work,
the same old way.
Every ******* day.

You say you believe
that love is the answer.
I don't know,
but hate is a cancer.
And it's miles and miles
to beat my retreat.
Some days it's  ******* the sound
of my own heartbeat.

I'm not another hack,
building out but holding back.
I live in the here in now, or so I say,
until the noise starts.
Rent's late.
Time to pay.
Every ******* day.

I would love, you must believe me,
to see peace.
I would love to lay my head down
and finally get sleep.
But there's work to be done,
there's hours and hours,
and so little ******* sun.
But if you stay with me,
hold hands and live with chance,
I might feel like I can be free.

But the knocking never goes.
We're not some dead beats,
though heaven only knows.
I'm spent from all my mediocre feats.
I can't find my bed and lay,
because the noise doesn't go away.
Every ******* day.
726 · Jan 2011
Paul Glottaman Jan 2011
Meet me in the forest,
what passes for one here.
Tell me your secrets and I
will tell you mine.
Over flashlight and
blood pacts we will
save our bottle caps
for our whispered projects.
In a notebook we keep the
page for decoding the
language we invented.
Each night we’ll bring the latest
chapters of our story.
In the morning we’re strangers.
We don’t talk, we don’t laugh,
we don’t look.
We’re each others best kept
One day we’ll decode love,
without the help of invented
language or spiral bound
My god, I miss the illusion
we had built around our
724 · Aug 2010
A predictable motion.
Paul Glottaman Aug 2010
A predictable motion,
my body into yours.
It's beautiful,
in it's circus act
kind of way.
The way you wince,
so slightly,
and even then,
only for a second.
The way you grasp,
my hand or my wrist,
and lean into me,
when your time
As if you were afraid.
Standing on the cliff,
looking down,
and shaking with
Hold onto me,
I will not let go.
Roll into me,
like waves on your
like static lines
on our Television.
Gently, ever so gently,
I'll loosen my grip,
and you will loosen yours.
We will plunge together.
But we will not let go.
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