sliding across drugstore
Poets, Whitman depends on you
for he cannot return but turn over
in his grave. Purge your words
and make a stand for freedom.
Somehow, it went unrehearsed
For a minimum introductory pillow— the wind
On fire like one’s eyes, or the next
Great theme that will soon become apparent
To the man wandering lonely under moonlight,
these porcelain birds in a forsaken-land inn
are unmelting ice-tissue onto the aorta walls!
Philosophers had become so dense that aphorisms took over
like hungry busboys clearing a banquet.
God is dead; hell is other people; I think therefore…
One busboy copped more leftovers than he could devour,
so he packed them up for his family.
// wild things are wild/ not a rib
to be unequally yoked/ because the walls
we build to contain them/ mean nothing to them /&
is the filth/ that makes them feel //
once the tyrants have the barrel of the gun
placed firmly against the back of your neck,
all they can ever think about is pulling the trigger
Tiffany and the Nimrod took their first night in a motel just past the truck stop, in a scarlet and white bridal suite. The motel had plastic furniture in the lobby, and “Jesus loves you,” graffitied on the condom machine in the public restroom.
not seen carpet bomb threshing machines
harvest fragile stalks of life
gone in stilled heartbeat,
not heard orphans cry in empty nursery,
not heard mothers cry in burned wheat field,
I don’t know what any of it means
sword arm aching, rebelling from the wrist
illness never quite reaching retching or infarct
never quite reaching the stomach or the heart
only the seat of longing for rest, peace, cease
their backs arched violently as
orgasmic waves welcomed flashes of
deep blue neon –
as an orgone accumulator trapped
under fractured glass wheezed
a lingering hostility
felt their screening
fingering to leather
a scratching tone
Invasive crawling bugs across the kitchen ceiling
Eating light bulbs to the socket
And candle wax and wicks
While night falls in,
the king's fool
elevated beyond his pay grade by a glitch
in a system 200 years out of date,
no anti-virus protection in sight
We’re not talking anyway. Not
about anything other
than COVID-19 anyway—
singing its monstrous aria,
It drapes the shoulders of a woman
bent over her garden, fills
the empty glass on the windowsill.
Oyster, enter mouth
sushi enter mouth
Why does the metaphor
want water and sex?
I write the newspaper headings,
pour more salt on my tequila,
stare at each individual crystal,
frighten away old precipice birds.
But what about bewilderment and the bewildered? The chance meeting of a dusky drowse with a stormy-gray late afternoon. Immaculate light meeting cobalt darkness in the lonely garbage-can alley. My electric mouth kissing your pink fingers one by one in aubergine ecstasy.
I have come to an important decision: I’ve had enough to drink. I’ve had enough of this salt air and these nights of dry smiles. Oh city of brick, oh house of dimming stars, my ancient rusting instruments.
sympathize with horses, who unrolled the plains. grass grew wide
in their tracks. yes, it’s on odd world, Dan, beyond our reasons.
might as well count violets, weigh wind, chart the angle of an eagle’s glance,
ask which nuclear bomb the US used to blow holes near the Colorado River.
And that is the way that you
the charity you give
to men like me.
Was he in Hawaii like he’d been
once in another dream?
Was he flying without wings with his daughter beside him
before they roused him from whatever lousy joy
with a baton at the window with a show me your hands
o corrosion of coriolas
o cauterization of victrolas and cylinders and disks
of the uncanny silence of lands and lakes
o the noisy skies, jewls of the viscous depths
o kupu, hanasu, mourning
When I say I love you, I don’t
mean to bring the corpse hounds
to find cadavers, I mean you—
even chapped and wind-burnt—
hallucination invented metaphysics,
separating out the divine. Now,
remove everything added
in the process of knowing.
like dante coughing up a lung
staring back at the maze of waves
he was spit from
dripping rags on sand
We may have crossed paths
In our recontextualizing process.
I guess I never really looked up.
will there be poetry
when there are no longer flowers
when honeybees are extinct
luxuriating deep underground in their silos
in some small book
no one will ever read
there is a poem
written about you
Times are hard in the world. Everywhere
there are beings who stone innocent
bystanders by talking apples.
Angels wrap themselves in the pages from
detective novels and fall asleep.
And the world keeps going ‘round
in swift wings for the fall
in scorching June alley ways
in handshakes in bare knuckles
in the fading throttle of oscillation
It would like to take the equivalent
of a cruise and tour of Italy, lie under
a bikini colored sun for weeks, months,
letting the world catch its thankful
breath—but history can’t relax, no
No, we won’t save an ant today,
nor a stray.
We slurp ramen noodles, wash it down
with schnapps, buck up for the night.
Ever been shattered by a woman’s
Voice surge so deep smacks the
Soul out your bones rattles your
Frame like shingles on a hurricane night
The news shows iguanas falling from the trees,
immobile in the cold weather, fair game for hawks
or chefs who claim they taste like chicken.
I, too, am immobile. Frightened,
I stay too long in bed.
indeed, as if there
were some other
direction to arrive
from, light rain or not.
One day it’s my 33-year-old cousin found dead in bed from an overdose; another day, it’s high school seniors raising their arms in the Nazi salute for a yearbook photo; another, it’s government protesters washing with bottles of Coke to help minimize the sting of tear gas.