Poetry, like cartography, can condense
the world aesthetically, until we see
that the last line of my poem is not ambiguous,
but lucid, perfectly lucid: “More delicate than
the historians’ are the map-makers’ colors.”

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now it's a suburb pull
meat from fire and inevitable
face grease and cigarette
decorative scarf yells from
audience, hierarchy howl

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There are legends and reports
that an ebony creature travels
the woods of maritime Canada,
often scoffed at, never proved.

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no, to tell you the truth
I am innocent but
I am pleading guilty
because I need to get out
​for my job before next Thursday

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It’s just like keeping saltwatah fish
in wun aquarium witout wun filter.

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this planet, which waits for us, accepts
its name.  this planet fails to communicate
its displeasure
at the name we've chosen for it;
her moonlets dance; her seas call us

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hit one time only! in kansas somewhere
then gone as quickly! squandered shot returns
but now i stay anxious / crack reminds me
every turn in view caresses Cautious

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On the iceblink
is a happy hue:
in concert with my chorus.
There is no bother of bliss.
​Memory is what we make of it.

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Rain as grey as your skin
defines the softer parts of hands
that scrape along brick buildings
​like tearing paper.

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here. Malady skin, folds
over whitecaps, beneath wind;
sun weight expounding
levels adjusted to carry. Faces devoid
of the dead man who walks

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I am a veteran of the apathy war—
a timeless soldier of relentless joy,
and I am listening to liars,
​from dawn to dusk—

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She tells him she got into public health counseling because private practice
Is full of clients like him.  “You’d be a gold-mine,” she says.  “You’d talk and talk
And uncover more and more stuff to talk and talk about.”  She stacks more books,
Then smiles at him. “And I’d make money.  I want to help clients who can’t help themselves.”

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The sky’s been paved and i have no traction, standing or credit
transparent doesn’t mean empty as opaque doesn’t guarantee content,
light that’s never received, so many phone calls passing through me
must be a couple ideas, how to increase signal strength

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You are not even an insect evading a predator. Instead, you sit on the floor breathing, because really there is no choice in this life but to allow air in and out of your lungs thousands of times an hour.

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I work loose an upper edge.  
His smaller moons are lifeless
but breath still rushes like a waterfall.
Even the fixtures are gold-plated.

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He writes to say he hopes I’m smiling
Sometimes I do, sometimes
I fasten on a photograph
When he was smiling.

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I spotted
my minuscule twin,
and I blew
the dirt off, my twin

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being silenced––
a kind of
thick despair––where
profit proffers aid
not there

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New condo towers leer,
self-conscious on the river walk.
Lean lines of headlights glare over
entry gate, doorman, lobby-high windows.

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the cornet heath 
pulled on its invective
in jumpsuits 
​                     a cadre aspirates 

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we stand holding onto one another
watching as lightning slashes the sky
jumping a little with each new explosion of thunder

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the cost was high,
but there’s no going back—
profits move ever forward,
and every swindle has a future
​on the silver screen

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At On the way to the polls with Louisa & Charlotte the at 10:40, I mortify Louisa.  twilight’s I tap Brooklyn Borough President last Marty Markowitz on the arm and say, “Praise God!” gleaming Marty Markowitz shrugs.

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A slow but
irreversible
autopsy
was performed
until the last item,
the last memory
​remained,

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Then he squeezed milk from it, but it was already too cold,
and the kids didn’t want any,
Yet it would have been more
than stuffing peppers
with darkness and meat.

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they ask if I have anything to eat
then I invite them to the woods again
they say it’s awkward for them
​but they will do it if I want to

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pins drop over the city
the wind whistles 
to no verdict 
Take me sleep
protect me, like angel music

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there were some different interpretations
of “lasting peace.” Turns out graveyards
are peaceful for everybody. And once we
have enough money, prices go up. And up.

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There’ s enough museum space so we all can hang
Something that resembles a Jesus picks us off of buildings
And someone has printed this poorly painted picture
Places it next to the customer bathroom

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Listen, everyone has a voice, a voice that carries what you mean & what you do not think you meant & what you did not think you meant to do but did anyway. A voice that follows in the night. That deflects & is deflected by us/you.

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a strategy akin
to how the mind handles
a ghastly memory,
the kind that takes gallons
of whiskey to suppress.

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One second they’re the Voice of New Seattle,
the next you’re at their goodbye party
as they leave for the new tech job,
program directorship, librarian gig, whatever,
in the next hip city on the circuit.

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Miles of trees and bushes along Pilani​
Highway in Maui are smothered
with Kudzu until the landscape
has completely changed and lost

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Lots of paisley, glittery blazers, onesies​
Of bunnies, shirtless bartenders and happy zombies—
Where boys are girls, and girls boys.
Look, every year is a mix
​Of ugly and pretty, you have to do some mental tricks

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Try to hear
a vanishing echo
or see
through the fog
of futility

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There's no real air in any of these wards.
Everything is permeated with well-meaning poisons.
I stand at the window but the outside
may as well be a million miles away.

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to be the wrong king
the bark in berry amounts and blessing
 
that sad friend in the lumber yard
that miracle frown to bless the kingship soccer

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This world now seems measured 
With the pressure it takes a butter knife
​To break skin 

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Amy was the first to point out the extraordinary
unlikelihood of such thoughts occurring
to a dinosaur. She had lived a long time
as a human and understood more than most.

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