Saturday, December 26, 2009

The Wind in Her Hair and Something That Has Nothing to do with Cooking

1.
Her lipstick is gone
dotted on coffee cups and napkins
her mascara, eyeliner and shadow
worn in the wind, washed away.

Her skin stands bare
stripped from it, all the things that,
she would believe, would make her more beautiful;

only nature defines her now,
highlighting her cheeks with the rosiness only a cold wind can purvey
her eyes sprinkled with light freckles
and her brow kissed by the gentle sun

what remains now is a countenance
that would make my heart beat for the first time
again

she is living,
organic,
love.


2.
Dreaming of a meal,
wrapped in paper and string
waiting for the love and flame
that would come, once a familiar hand
pulls the door open and the light comes on.

Soon sweet smells of onion and olive oil,
butter and lemon dance together, dotting the air
just above the pan.

Diced this and that now enters,
bounding from the board to the steaming range
color and texture form

cream swirls and swoons
making potatoes soft and smooth;
rosemary and basil dot the milky white.

The dream progresses and the sounds of
clanking pans, and thumping, chopping, knives increase;
the hands are becoming frantic, frustrated
and the ingredients keep multiplying

it seems that too much has entered the pan
the potatoes boil over
and the steam becomes thick, black, smoke.
The sauce is breaking.

Swift footsteps approach from behind
and second set of hands dash from spoon to panhandle,
knife to ladle and the flames calm,
the potatoes reduce their froth
and the sauce renders
unscathed

The second pair of hands now come near,
covering the first, interlocking and stroking gently;
like the flames, the panic dies down
and the light turns off.

The dream ends, eyes flutter open
and the two pairs of hands lay between them
still interlocked.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Rain, Desire, Adventure, and Love

1.
Rain has fallen silently in the night.
it has come and gone, whisked
from my windowpane,
by a swift wind
and now some distant desert country is
suddenly moist and cool.

I am unaware of this
save a small feeling of content
in the back of my head,
the remnants of rainfall on my path
and the prevailing wind.

But the rain is due for another show
and along this trail the wind changes once more
darkening the skies
like cocoa powder dropped into
the pearlescence of milk.

The air is dancing about me-
harsh bits of pebble
skittering along a red rock road
and the distant barking of an unsheltered
dog scratching at a back door.

Storms breed unease in many
but this day, this moment, I'm smiling
for the cool moisture drawn from
the swaying trees is licking at my face
and the warmth of drink still remains
tucked inside of my coat.

2.

A cigarette glows
and the Countess reclines further
into the
soft
red
leather.

She is staring through you
her gaze is blazing with
greater fire than the smoking thing
in her lips
and you feel the heat slowly moving
from your head to toe.

On cue, a silver tray floats in
and the smell of single malt libation
wafts from a set of crystal,
clinking slightly as it's set
halfway
across
the room.

Your eyes never break gaze
as you stroll towards your life preserver
hoping that with the slug
you'll manage to remain afloat
in her stormy eyes.

After you've downed the third
you make your way to the arm of her chair
pulling out your own brand and
as you set it in your lips
a lighter snaps on just below
her face is
glowing,
staring.

Pausing to see her face
in the lighters flickering light
you are made aware of every hair
on the back of your neck
man overboard.

3.

He sits in a rich velvet chair
surrounded by the blue haze of pipe smoke
and the walls lined with books, are barely visible.

The gentile whir of a phonograph in the corer
announces it's journey to the next song and
as the silence breaks,
filled with the gentile scraping of strings,
he settles into the next, worn, page.

Despite his plush perch of velvet
and the delicacy of the music
his eyes are wide with horror;
sweat dots his brow, and his fingertips
are white grasping the binding.

The smoke, books and chair
are nothing to him now as he
flashes down the Amazon river
spear and darts blurring by his pith.

The natives are restless.


4.

Hundreds gather
swaying to the swing of a big band
high heels dart by, spats embrace shined shoes and
legs rush in and out of a great club.
Conversation is growing thicker than the london fog
just outside.

The brass section is waving,
great golden instruments glinting
in the light of a stunning crystal chandelier
casting it's rainbow of color across the hall;
the smell of champagne
hangs in the air.

In the middle of the floor
a single white dinner coat and
a captivating, red gown float in small circles
drawing the eyes of the high society crowd
their slander slows
and only the gasping of lonely hearts is heard.

They two are separate, unaware of the room
dancing on a private plane;
her face is still,
her gaze is fixed
and her smile is all the music he needs.
The light dims and a soft spotlight is upon them;
casting a moon-like glow,
highlighting their love.

The band has fallen silent,
no notes could compliment
and any great solo would be lost
for only deaf ears remain.

The couple dips and trots,
spins and tightly embraces
and, when the music in their hearts comes to an end
they each bow
and walk off
hand in hand.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Another Drop of Red into the Sand

1.
This marble face
is cracking
too strong not to feel

hundreds take pictures
posing with the figure
deep in thought;
hanging off it's limbs
unaware of the
squirming
just below the surface

So long, it has been
since warm steel
worked on soft stone;
love impressed
into the wild,
veined rock

It now sits
it's stoic visage
staring off beyond
all that we can know
feeling the warmth of the sun
and the cool wind
slowly grinding it
back to nature.

2.
Worn and out of tune
the mandolin strums
from an equally weary stool
such a distant feeling
hearing the music of a faraway country
conjuring thoughts of dark cafes
and cobbled paths by a Mediterranean sea

lights dance in the water and in my mind
bouncing baubles, hanging like
tea lamps from rocking trees
a light wind blows through my thoughts
and brings my mind back
to what my eyes have been resting upon

a simple man, playing a song;
all the while, the light clinking of cups
coming to rest on saucers
smooths the ears passage
between music.

3.
Hardened flesh
grinding into wound steel
and bronze;
blood finds its way out
marking the passage of indiscernible
fingers on six vibrating strings

tears flow from self-inflicted wounds
chords of melancholy memory
wrapping about a body;
a warm blanket of
a cold past

one hand grows numb;
the other, it's fingertips
beginning to ache
growth by the death
of tissue

a person sits in the center of a room
making ripples in the air
and feeling them as they reflect back
bouncing off of keepsakes
and bare walls

hands rest on smooth, cool wood
and the vibration dissipates into
the dark corners of the room;
the tears dry into salt
and the instrument is placed back in it's case.

Growth by the death of tissue.

4.
Tonguing dry lips.
The wind is unrelenting
but on the horizon, this desert
becomes grassland.

Always on the horizon.

A thousand pairs of eyes
have seen this view-
Prosper; just beyond.

No spyglass can bring it to you
only blood and tears.

outstretched arms;
accepting

another defiance
another drop of red into the sand

another step.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Light Rain in the Afternoon

1.
"Never"
can be a
cruel notion
so too is the idea
of limitation
yet the walls still stand
graffiti ridden reminders
of past opposition
ideas thick and unfeeling
the molasses of bigotry
the once powerful
yet backwards thought
of supreme being
separating the chaff
from all the rest
the sub-human
the emotional wretches
crying for family
crying for god

they could see it then
circling above the mighty peak
still too high to reach
not vultures but soft clouds
sunlight above the darkness
each day climbing higher
each day the mountain growing
the voices of hate fade into the valley below
and the echo of the ones who came before
strengthen unsure legs

the fight is here
and to ignore it is to stop
climb no higher
and begin to
slide
down

it is then
that "never"
is word
of strength

so
to the unsure

it is said-
never again;
nevermore will you allow
the world to move
without your voice

never.

2.
Thunderstorms brewing
over darkened brows

slotted eyes staring
darting pupils
back and forth;
this is a hopeful day
a day of intention
and self-fulfillment
a day of Samuel Clemens
lit by a candle's light
curtains flung open
to gray skies

Today daydreams,
wandering quests
and much chocolate
baked and wafted
into every breath

a day of china teacups
slightly steaming
constantly rubbing lenses;
the sound of a single page
slid along fingers turning onto
the next

This day is not for grieving
or over-introspection
it's not for cleaning
for coveting
or skipping chapters;

it certainly isn't in lieu of
or a chance to hide from;
no excuses were crafted
no promises were ignored

This is
a very
good
day.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Olive Oil and Talking Myself to Bed

1.
There it is
in the steaming wine sauté
meandering about the room
dancing with herbs
and spices

it's hopping about
in tiny oil splatters
and dripping artfully
onto clean
white
plates

it's in the sound of
carbon steel meeting
moist wood
a knife writing it's name
in each item
a pan sealing
it's locked within
the
moist
warmth

it's in the glistening
salad leaves
red and green;

floating in soups

wound deeply in the
knot of angel pasta
floating up from the
boiling water.

but mostly it's
in the heart and hands
of the chef

a gift of love
for the stomach
and soul.


2.

A strange thing it is
that tears should be warm
a tea brewed within your heart
and poured in celebration
of love and loss;

more like blood
than water.

A beautiful release
a punctual headache
removing glasses
rubbing the bridge of
your nose;
acknowledging
something beyond
that annoying
"upper lip" phrase.

Allowing not the wallow
but the wrapping of a blanket
letting yourself
feel
completely.



3.
Listing little lies
great intention
lacking gusto
Toilets
waste-bins
dishes;
the kitchen floor
never submitting to
hands and knees.

Always such important things
running about in a whirling mind;
plenty of time to do all that
later.

though,

just as company arrives,
a great desire consumes -
a need
to do
the laundry.

Stuffed this and that sitting
on porcelain platters
can't distract fully
from the thumping
of the washing machine
and the constant clatter
of scrubbing dishes

the vacuum comes out
met with a dirty look from
the TV viewers
and the mop is shunned;
apparently some people need
the bathroom open
no questions asked

the chores end

there is nothing left
but to sit and talk;
but the world seems too still
and the conversation is
not enough to hold attention

eyes darting about the room
looking for imperfection
distraction
purpose beyond a simple chat.

Hours pass
baseball games
action movies
dirty jokes
listening to one's mind
wandering.

then the company leaves

the room falls silent

and you're left wondering
where did the time go?
You're ready to give in
let go
enjoy

instead
you fall back;
staring at the ceiling
for hours.


4.
Daydreams of conversations
yet to be uttered -
the future.

Yet in the night
dreams of nothing;
a darkness plain and unnatural
stays fixed all about
my eyes

Where are the space journeys
sea voyages
castle walls
and cobbled streets?

The void consumes me
and sleep itself becomes a symbol
a cause
of unrest.

What use is there in dreams
when the greatest adventures
and epic loves
are wrapped in cloth
and paper?

The hero
isn't you
those lovers
don't love you
and you certainly aren't
an angel
floating above the world
written below

Looking for similarities

and meaning in fiction
is a messy business
the covers of a book
will never contain more
than the covers
of your own bed.

So the attempt is made

each night
to drift off with
a new tide

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Family Dinner and A Writing Session in the Rain

1.

A shimmering, capable
blade sits adjacent
to my
plate

In the corner of my eye
a moisture-laden Merlot
sits on an ivory-white
table cloth

a single drop of sweat rolls
down the small of my neck
disturbing the sensitive
hairs

I choose to ignore the salt shaker
sitting on its
side, a
tiny mound of blasphemous
dust beside it

A loud crash causes forks to
silence their massacre
and I stand
slipping away;
attending to the horrific
salvation.

2.

Rain
falling
on a dark-green umbrella
smoke mixing with
steam
from simmering coffee beside
book and pen;
gray skies shine, reflected
against the slick, black
street.
Harsh breaths, taking in
the brisk atmosphere
exhaling warm byproduct
exhaust from the machine
that is
your soul.
Blank, raindrop dotted
pages give way to

thoughts of fireplaces and
Persian slippers full
of the choicest tobacco

notions of hansom cabs
clattering down narrow
cobbled streets

and ruminations of warm, tossed
bedding with
two heartbeats
held close

The pages fill
and the ashtray is
twice replaced
The world falls silent

as the

rain

breaks

and the sound
of a dragging pen is
r
eplaced with a
single set of footsteps
wandering to a cold,
empty
house.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Coffee, Common Ground, and an Observation

1.
Bob Dylan is giving me a dirty look
something about
me being
a wimp.
I just wanted a cup of joe
a couple of sugars
and a nice walk
but he looks serious
standing next to the counter
a steaming cup of his own
fogging up
from his hand;
I half tip my cap
half run away
into the
bitter
air.
Bukowski narrowly misses me
in a blue Volkswagen
and Chandler lets out a laugh
at my expense
from a shady spot
on the patio.
I shake the coffee that
spilled off of my hand
and keep
walking.
At the light a limo stops
and Nora Charles
pops out of a tinted window
she asks for directions
Nick shakes his head
just inside the car;
he mutters something
about me not knowing
which way
is which
then begins to shake a cocktail
as the window
rolls
back
up
Two men in black
pass me
in front of my apartment
thumbing their way across the nation
on their way
to Mexico
one looks over
flips me the bird,
and winks.

I step through my door
and stop
shake my head
and smile.


2.
Echoes in the dark
wind from an
unseen end
around the bend
safe
ideal
but only black
stretches on
wretches of the lost
groping for hope
you heart in hand
holding tight
hoping for a single,
flickering
bulb
still waiting
still walking

miles drag
fingers along your
spine
around your ankles
about you neck
trek further
passing wreck
after wreck
past lives
past dreams

then the air clears
and the darkness
seems
different
it wraps around you
like a warm bath
a glimmering lake
to swim; dim
at best
the light comes
softly, slowly
your feet didn't
bring it near
but you hear the
beating
grow
for it was
inside
waiting to show
when your
soul and
you mind
find

common
ground.


3.
Piles of books
looks from ghosts
the toast of literature
staring forward
waiting
breathless
for the next
last word
old wood creaks
between volumes
voices muttering
pages shuffling
cloth covers
snapping closed
posed are they
sitting on the
shelves
waiting
breathless
for the next
last word
you
don't
have
it
in
you.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Lofty

1.
Tea kettle hopping
whistling for a bit of attention.

Here I sit
across the room
rolled sleeves
hunched and furrowed
eyes flashing
a late night jamming of keys
letting the words fall
my mind not in place.

Watching letters I
didn't pick
floating together
becoming a thought
I didn't realize
I was thinking.

Violins in the back of my
mind, thoughts of
earlier in the day
an orchestra.
Now sweet jazz laps
gently into my ears
but my mind
still
isn't
here.

Leaning back, looking
longingly out a foggy window
the world moving lazily
down the puddled street
I need more
I want more
but what it is
eludes me.

Abstract pleasures
floating in a haze
my mind is playing
catch-up
with
my
soul.

I'm not in the mood

for games.

2.
Loosened tie
the top few buttons
undone
like a trumpeter
hat pushed back
a few drops of sweat
find their way down
my neck.

The sun strips the
starch
from my collar
coffee smacks
of unfulfilment
and my nose
declares the air
inhospitable

This chair is giving way.

I need a new scene
a new brewhouse
a new face.

These dice aren't rolling
my way.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Corner Stool

1.
Unmistakable;
the business end
of a Lucky Strike
glowing from the back
of a hazy room.

Sitting before a ghost band
a hep beat floats back
entangled in the
musicians smoke

The music pauses
and the grey thickens
thoughts of the outside
the next step
an adult life

A hand shoots upward
and drinks are served
cool, fresh amnesia
ice cubes still clinking

The band resumes
it's set.

2.
Walking inside
the thick air hits you
like a hard kiss
a hiss
of steam
from your ears
bodies jiving
sliding as the cymbal
cries into the crowd
loud are the horns
calling the snare
to bear on your soul
sweat pours
their minds must be
lost
not
yours
cool drink sizzles
mingles with sweat
on your
lips
hips wander near
eyes like ice
twice cooling
your soul.

You emerge
changed.

3.
Walking along to the sound of a clarinet
skipping over the cracks
to the snare
heels, percussion
the wind whipping your coat
dancing in the air
fingers tapping at your sides
mirroring the gentile
flow of piano keys
then the whirlwind fades back
just the clarinet
a dragging match
a sizzle
and footsteps
echo
down
the
street.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Snare and Piano

1.
Cold Glass
tints of green and
brown
Sleepy eyes staring
at glossy wood.
Put your feet up
on the
rail;
relax.

Looking up,
checking the
mirror
amidst a crowd
you feel
safe.

Spin around
meeting the smiles
of a thousand
unknown
possibilities-
friends;
lovers.

Another round
another laugh
tapping the oak
a coaster
slapped down
cold
sweet
and sour.


2.
Keep fighting
the inkling
to be
a silent
observer.

Make a joke;
smile into the eyes
of a
beautiful
woman
or be a bastard
make an impression
start a fight
or
drown
within
yourself.

Sometimes
you need to be
your own
inspiration.
Make your
own
scene.

3.
Blue light
comes for
me.

The night
abandons.

The sun is
hot
on my trail.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Introspective, shaken.

The search
for inspiration
at my desk or
in my bed.

Typed
or handwritten.
Spoken or
cursed

Pencils lack the
longevity
Pens constantly
lose traction
over bumpy
roads.

Tomorrow I'll be
carving a tablet
of stone
while hanging
from
the rafters

like a bat.

2.
Holding my tongue
is a three person job;
always knowing the
correct
and proper way
to entertain notions
and diffuse
tension.

But I don't
tolerate
much.

Don't expect me
to be thrilled
at all your
accomplishments.
Don't expect me
to look up
from my clinking
ice cubes
and shake
your hand.

Waves of clear
ice water
dancing against
golden liquor.
Never break the
concentration
of a person
deciphering the mysteries
of their cocktail.

I bite.

3.
Chasing the dream;
wondering when stiff drinks
and toilet paper will be
given out as
rations.
Essentials of the
common
human.

I need bread and
water
I want
coffee from drinking fountains
and scotch
from the government;
economics of an
impoverished soul.

I'm ashamed to want a house
and a partner to hold;
dodging materialism and misogyny
by a hair's breath
wondering if love
really is
demeaning.

All the while
you're
sitting in your
breakfast nook
shoveling organic sugar
into
"free trade"
or
"pure conscience"
coffee.

How's that
working out
for you?

4.
It's been too long
since
the messages taken over
the phone
were more important
than
the doodles in
the margin.
Tiny circles, nonsensical
devices and
lyrics from something
in the back
of my mind
Always outweighing
the dentist's follow-up
or the long past due
phone bill.
Someday
I'll refinance something
Till then
this rocket-ship
needs
a cloudy blue yonder.

5.
A gentile saxophone
plays an outro
in the remaining few
minutes of the four o'clock
hour.
A last dance for a busy night
The raspy speaker
speaks the
slow sensibilities
of the 1930's
"...goodbye and farewell
I shall return to shore soon..."
With that
the golden light fades
a few cracks
a pop
and a thumping loop
as the needle
revisits
the end.


Thursday, October 15, 2009

Dreaming of My Shady Rock

1.
Searching a world
of advice;
throwing my arms up,
begging for clarity.
Guidance comes.
It flows uninterrupted
constantly luring me
in the wrong directions
buying and selling my
emotions on a public
market.
Fighting to put a
dollar sign
on my sanity.
Filth is all the response
that I receive.
But as I wrap my arms about me
and begin to weep;
the air whispers:
You
Will
Remain.

2.
Contemplating
the bones in one's head;
the skull as a whole
just underneath
moist tissue.
Always balancing
a fishbowl of brains
on your spine.
Beer, scotch and
the occasional tequila
sloshing about
the fatty mass.
Young mothers,
disgruntled ex's
and violent, pulsating music
batting it about.
Antiquated theories,
archaic practices,
and egotistical educators
trying to pry in.
You're hoping for the best
when walking down
a simple set of
stairs.

3.
Looking for gray
despising the signs of youth.
We all sit in the a hell
of assumption
uncultured
immature.
I can do nothing
but wait for time
and the wind
to break me down
till I resemble
the voice I emit.
I suppose then I can
find comfort
in being pegged
as
out of touch.

4.
I love the caress of changing shadows
wandering over my body
while this car drives down
a windy road.
Canyon after canyon,
a soft stream flowing beside
the hard black ground
reminding me of old movies.
I want to call this scene a wrap
and lay on the smooth stones
listening to the water
it's lazy trickle
lulling me to rest.
Then off again
out onto the open plains;
always dreaming
of my shady
rock.

5.
I hate hearing
that men
lack the ability to love

She told me that men
think that love is cute
and useless;
that sex is the only gain
we have in mind.
We are desperately clinging
to the playtime
of our youth
keeping
the same
destructive behaviors.
Blowing up
our sisters doll
and wondering why
she's crying.

I cry.
I cry when she's
not there.
I cry when her scent
walks by
years later.
I sob when her skin isn't
against mine;
and I break down
when I'm
assumed to be stone.

I love.
I will love.
I have loved.
I've given my soul
in search of
love.
It was
blown into shards.

and she wondered
why
I was crying.


Monday, October 12, 2009

Commonly Unshaven

1.
I have this old tube
radio;
it's a record player.
I love it, as dusty as it gets.
It works beautifully;
warming up after a lovely click.
I'm sad though,
when it begins to play
because the sound is that
of today.
All the warmth of the
golden glow
is wasted.
The radio and I
are misplaced
in time.

2.
China clinking;
chipping.
muffled orders passed to
men with sweaty brows
and stained aprons.
Squeaky vinyl,
torn and scuffed;
duct tape patches.
The tables are uneven
wobbling.
Rattling of a fork
fallen, a knife
meeting porcelain.
Praying the man
ducking under
the counter leaf
has washed
his hands.
I hope my coffee
isn't filled
too high.

3.
Ugly.
Despicable.
Reprehensible.
You get the idea,
but it's what I think;
and you're still here.
It was the reading glasses.
You don't know
Johnny Cash.
He was bad
trying to be good.
You thought I was a square
it turns out I have curves
that can make you vomit.

4.
I always giggle at myself
when sitting
in dirty underwear,
fighting a cold.
I can see the postcard
moment;
hair akimbo
unshaven
nose running.
Like that crazed portrait
of Poe;
but half naked.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A Night with the DPS and a friendly dog from hell.

1.
Where the hell has Ginsberg gone?
These people need a good, hard look at themselves.
Talk of finance seems to permeate the air
and yet the arts were impoverished long ago;
reduced to weekend enthusiasts or the wealthy eccentric.
Where are the coffee houses broadcasting prose;
the parks teeming with free people in revolt.
More nights lost to sleep, coffee turned cold.
Why are the midnight diners lost to sundry drunkards
and the streets vacant save the homeless
and the mindless corporate drone.
It seems the white picket fence has returned
and we are all to be crucified upon it.

2.
We're all doomed to dreaming of soaring through the stars
while naked, sweating through already soiled sheets.
Our contentment is based on our ability to ignore
the influence of the rotten, spoiled world around us.
I'm not one to smile when getting a ticket
for smoking on a sidewalk;
standing amongst the butts and the ash
recounting "Yes sir's" to an officer
with excellent penmanship.
It begins to mist as I saunter home,
becoming a pitter-patter against my coat.
I'm thinking of my putrid bed
and where it's going to take me.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Untitled

To be bored with the workings of the heart is to be dead
and those who declare themselves unamused
are naive.
Pain and happiness are not so far apart;
emotion not so childish.
A shriveled existence of cowering from your soul
is not an option; my words are powerful
because I am aware of myself.
They will grow because I refuse
to look away.

I Need Some Air

1.
The first conversation;
thinking of longevity,
feeding off of desire.
We spoke of a passion for words,
the delicate imagery of candles
and a love of generations past.
Each taking turns leaning over the table
lips meeting as a sign of approval.
I miss that version, It was perfect;
in that moment we were destined
it was decided beyond me.
The world around was a blur.
Time has passed, feelings have changed
and the nuances are lost;
but I remember enough,
to weep.

2.
Young love is disgusting,
there is no honor among the the coming of age.
Hands held and cast away, promises whispered
and broken.
Windows fogged, and innocence
abused.
On the rare occasion when seriousness,
true care, and honesty linger;
the world beyond is discovered.
Maturity has not yet been attained
and the lust for deeper meaning outweighs
such saccharine notions.

3.
Regret is honesty.
You could have done better,
you could have changed.
Maybe you would have kept your job,
lost some weight or stayed out of jail.
Maybe she would be here.
It is said that if you do your best
then there is nothing to regret.
I respectfully disagree.
You don't know your limits
so everyday,
you're failing.
Acknowledge that you
are nothing but a speck
and the world
will be wide open
Regret is honesty.

4.
One thought
one slip
and I'm falling
like some alcoholic
touching gin to their lips.
I need pictures, conversation
but it all leads to destruction
sobbing and headache.
Such a calm evening
until I think of her
then my face tightens
and my vision blurs.
This must end;
I'm the only one
still here.

5.
I hate myself for feeling;
loss dominates my body
just below the surface.
I have brave faces and
a desire for quick love;
nothing will quench me.
She's gone off with another
and another and another;
I am buried in the paperwork
of her new dating life,
a cold case, never to be reopened.
I never wanted another.

6.
A vacation in heaven
wandering through the snow
sharing an old high school bed.
Dusty Poe books and class projects,
younger faces framed,
braces and purple hair.
A warm family, scrabble
and the mountains, god the mountains!
We took trips to the local bar
with mounted animals
and a worn dance-floor.
Second and third Christmases
spent in a double wide
and a snow covered chalet.
The family was wonderful
beyond my dreams.
It was heaven
and now the thought of all that
takes me to hell.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

I can't stop looking over my shoulder.

1.
How did I get in this place? All in good fun I suppose.
A night spend drowsily wandering over her body
tasting her soul, and eventually collapsing beside her.
I throw the sheets to the side, stinking of sweat; it's quiet.
Only the sound of an oscillating fan making its rounds,
a chill moves across my face, ruffling my hair.
I hear her shuffling about the bathroom and I sigh.
I remember taking comfort in that sound
the sound of someone else getting ready for work.
I would sit there, a bit foggy waiting for my goodbye kiss
and collapsing back into sheets that still smelled of her.
But this is different and I will get no goodbye,
a nod and wink on the way out
at best.
It's all in good fun.

2.
I remember thinking;
"Hot Chocolate wasn't a good idea."
Bleary eyed I stood there
hot water in one hand, a packet of mint cocoa in the other.
looming over a glass mug, sobbing.
The last time there was powder in this mug
I was in different company.
I can't help it, I can't avoid it.
We picked them out, a sign of prosperity,
choosing things together; making a home.
I should like to think of childhood moments
with grilled cheese in front of the hearth.
I had marshmallows in those days.
Now the little floating clouds remind me
of trips to the store, so she could have them in her mug;
I wanted it to be perfect; I was a fool.
After a bit of blinking through steam,
I finish pouring my cup. Let out a groan and a sigh.
Thoughts that remind us of happy times, should not delay
a good cup of warm cocoa.

3.
The taste of smoke and whiskey lingers in the back of my throat.
A heavy, thankful sigh as I pull into my spot and walk upstairs.
My voice is gone, there's smeared lipstick everywhere;
where do I find the energy to do all this?
I walk into the dim apartment and flick the light on
the bulb flashes briefly and leaves me drenched in darkness.
Blue light from the moon outlines a figure looming;
sleep is staring at me
naked in the corner of the room
I'm oddly aroused

4.
I hope my mind cares for me when I'm not watching.
Shoveling bad memories from huge piles
into the smokestacks of my soul
like the engine-room from a colossal steam ship
making my screws flutter faster through a murky sea.
I want to plow through giant waves of grief
and break any ice that threatens my course.
My confidence is grievously aware of my mortality,
my body has no life raft;
I am my own safety measure.
I'm just getting over my fear of drowning
in the vastness of it all.

5.
I'm supposed to write for the fat lady
but her song is, and should be, the last thing on my mind.
I miss the comforts of the past,
I can't seem to forget all that.
Standing here, out on the blustery corner,
a crossroads where the former meets the latter
I am in the now, the present.
My life is turning onto a new path
and the new beginning should be drawing my eye.
Yet here I stand, motionless,
squinting down my former course,
what would have been.
All I knew is still on that street, moving ahead.
I'm looking for more sadness I suppose,
thanking the stars, I have poor eyesight.
I wrap my coat about me and make the turn,
constantly looking over my shoulder.
I will never learn.


Monday, September 28, 2009

Basics.


1.
Living your life to the fullest
will suck any thick skin off of your bones
but there is no life in avoiding broken glass.
Walk down the center of the road
skip, following the dashed line.
Hear the horns of the contented masses
cursing your radical behavior as they sit
fat and complacent;
safe in their cars.

2
A craft spent writing your heart on a wall
will leave you with no mystery
people will know who you are and what you are.
The greater damage though, is to lie
inflicting fiction upon someone;
telling them that you are a shining soul,
good at heart and smart as a whip.
I'm not that good,
I never was and I'm content with that.
I will never be what they want me to be,
I will be a window, a lens with no correction.
A man who writes to empty his heart of grief.

3
A whimsical umbrella saunters down the street
making a funny little void in the rain;
a heavy stream runs from a jagged tear.
Perfectly good I suppose; blocking the majority,
but a sad sight none-the-less.
Like a beaten old soul, still just getting by
it's held proudly; a possession of worth and use
but when the tear runs wider and the pride is lost
its usefulness will come to an end;
one day.

4.
Maturity never comes in handy.
always coming entirely too late
always showing up
after the fact.
We're always unprepared.
Constantly thinking of the past;
what could have been done.
Then you begin to realize
that not knowing,
is where you want to be.
living from moment to moment
floating through the haze
making the best of what you have.
It's been said I think,
You need to be lost
before you find yourself.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Not yet through the woods, let alone over the mountain.

1.
Cold porcelain stained and solitary.
For the last hour it has been constantly raided;
it's contents carefully removed then refilled.
I worship at its lip, and give thanks.
For without its offering of warm liquid,
I would never last through the night.

2.
Memories still punish my soul.
The same thoughts that breed anger and resent
are the best bits of my history.
I am better for recounting them
and yet my mind lashes me;
leaving deep wounds on my back.
Do I enjoy the punishment? the Suffering?
Repeating the reel of yesterday,
a worn home movie of a violent past.
It hardens my resolve, mistakes not to be repeated;
each time the movie plays I see more hope,
flashes between the frames.

3.
Anti-coagulant shoved into an already hemorrhaging heart
breeds more than heartburn and ulcers.
Blindsided by a warm past waiting for closure,
not a snake but a subconscious looming in the tall-grass.
I'm out of tears, for once they do not come so easily
there is more pain from the lack of emotion.
The water that was once under the bridge
is drowning me.

4.
We need to be knocked about,
we need to break and bleed.
There is no lesson in idling.
There are no calluses from daydreams,
only well-honed regret and atrophy.
There is temptation in avoiding the world;
escaping the stress and strain.
With smooth, soft hands comes naivete.

5.
To heal is to welcome the salty tide;
memories washing over open sores.
In and out, euphoria and burning agony
tears accompanying all sensations.
The sores become scars and pock marks;
the sea hardens your flesh.
With time the scars fade from your eyes
but they always remain on your soul.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Spreading Ribs

1.
Cutting off a dead limb
saves the body.
Cutting out a dead heart
doesn't save the soul.
To live a life without a heart
is condemnation.
I have lived thorough love
and hidden my scars
but I cannot be afraid
of more spilled blood.

2.
Happiness is not unreachable,
love is not so high on its pillar;
but the ladder I carry is too short.
My life must be donated to that cause
I must grow, stretch and reach.
I must attain sanity,
or content in disillusionment.

3.
I was told that a writer needs moors
a place to go for inspiration
someplace with history, perhaps death.
That same person provided the inspiration
and the death of bits of my soul.
She is my moor, she is my cold wind
as romantic as she is desolate.
I don't need fog, I have her scorn.

4.
I want to fall in love
I want to look away from experience;
reminders of hate and anger.
It wont end in tears and headache.
I won’t have to slowly walk my things out of ‘our’ apartment
and I won’t leave my favorite chair behind.
Perhaps this time it will work
and we will share our hearts
coveting nothing but our time.

5.
I will remain open,
letting the daggers in.
I will not flinch when they come.
I will stand allowing the world
to wash over me.
If my eyes are closed nothing is gained,
I will hope for love;
I will accept pain.


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A Night Spent Waiting.

1.
Alarm clocks shouldn't be trusted
once wound, programmed or called
they should be prompt
punctual,
and should never fail.
I will never trust them,
and have spent many nights awake
waiting for the day to begin;
content that I would not miss the sun,
at least not because of that...thing.
Is my mistrust misplaced?
Is it really me?
A heavy hand, or perhaps
a stubborn unconscious
not wanting to turn over the keys
just yet.
Why don't more of them
come with a taser attachment
or a bucket of water
on a string.
But then, I suppose,
we would be terrified
awake, with bloodshot eyes
watching the alarm clock
about to pounce.

2.
Stopped at a light,
wondering why.
There are no other cars,
there are no people;
its 3 o'clock in the a.m.
and ghosts are impeding me.
Where is modern technology?
and why the hell is my car
still on the ground?
I should be floating about
in a DeLorean type-job
streaking through the sky,
among the other spirits;
the ones not holding up traffic.

3.
Sitting, reading;
I need to piss.
Across the street
a sprinkler is broken,
a geyser on Scott Road.
This doesn't help.
It's too early for anyone but me
and my bladder
to notice.

4.
I'm thankful
when the past catches up.
When memories become current
and new ones are made.
I'm glad that resolution
can be found in remembrance.
It's not always the case;
and if you err
history will not happen upon you
it will hunt you.
It has found me
and I am hopeful.

5.
Hands waiving,
wildly gesticulating with silence.
What are all these god-damned spots?
I need coffee
coffee.
Panic ensues over sugar
rather, the lack thereof.
Confusion, no focus
lack of lens cleaner.
One cup trembles against my lip,
warmth runs down my throat;
addiction.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Cheeky

1.
Laying in the grass
staring up at the many constellations
named after glorious tales
goddesses, battles
and Native American rituals;
they are signs of fallen heroes
points of light that carried sailors home
and yet all I do is sit
thinking of the patterns of moles
on past lovers backs;
I feel a rain dance coming on.

2.
Solitude is not solace.
Solitude should be tolerated;
appreciated in small doses
and praised for its restful ways
but never accepted as the norm
never allowed to stay long
for to share one's thoughts is joy
to have them accepted and appreciated is love
and love is solace.

3.
The feeling of approaching sleep is comforting;
the confirmation that I'm still alive
and the realization of the stricken hour.
The air itself seems to become lazy
and despite the shielding of carved glass,
my eyes have been bombarded enough.
It is then, by way of shuffling feet
I find cool tiles, and introduce grinder to beans
and grounds to steaming water;
the smell of stimulant, fills the room.
Wide eyes and racing blood,
more confirmation of my humanity.

4.
A turntable moves my fingers better.
Television steals my gaze,
the radio asks for money
and people need too much attention.
The crackles of a record put me into a trance
sharpening my imagination
tuning out the vacuum.
Flipping the vinyl every few songs
is a necessary break;
a chance to stretch and pour a new cup.
Keeping all of my actions personal and tactile.
So there I sit,
listening,
typing,
turning,
pouring
and repeating.

5.
Poetry is nonsense
it's just a jumble;
some broken sentences
wandering about
a vague, florid mess.
Poetry is literary misdirection;
a word-smith's slight of hand.
Veiling a lack of structure
with pretty words;
there's never a point.
Moreover, you will be poor
and will have no following;
you're images are easily forgotten,
plagiarized in greater works
Write a novel they said,
people get novels.

Friday, September 4, 2009

A Brief Window.

Introverted thought
breeds hatred of self.
I care outwardly, internally;
and those that resent me
I pretend to disdain.
I will cry for them
and they will forget me.
I am words,
a curious bunch of thought
but as a doctor delivers news of death,
I am unfeeling
yet devastated.
I am conflict,
unresolved.


Thursday, September 3, 2009

A Few Nights Distilled

1.
Smoking areas
are wondrous things;
drink causes clouded thought
but just outside the pub
wafts a mixed air
of smoke and words,
a haven for the cultured.
The thumping noise within
makes for deaf ears
individuality wanes in the dark;
Here you are butted against
a variety of miscreants
the drunks, the smokers
observers of kindred souls.
Wander out into the soft din
step onto the toes of the repulsive
this is my living room
and you will find my lot here
lock eyes,
find the education of countless universities
all the hard knocks that society can muster
drink in the experience
for the barkeep inside
only offers a hazy recollection
this cocktail is one that
offers a hangover that life beyond
will lust after.

2.
People are more interesting
when they're vague
so much to long for.
The mind creating infinite possibilities
filling in the blanks with your own criteria.
Facts enter and judgment occurs,
the fantasies die swiftly.
Mystery is the muse of life
lose it and reality is what remains
reality, is a harsh spouse.

3.
Will he remember me?
stumbling up from across the bar
asking for a cigarette.
He was from "Spain"
a casting director
a space explorer
and a rodeo clown
I bought him a drink.

4.
The late night weirdos,
huddling together under smokey umbrellas
in brick coffee houses,
glaring angrily at the glow from a laptop;
a foreign object and symbol of the outsider.
Thick rimmed glasses judge your book jacket
and a scarf from across the room sneers at your shoes,
this is not a place to lock eyes.

5.
Fidgeting again.
Cool walls hold back ash
the fires are still burning.
My radio plays a soft tune
some 1920's voice.
At this moment
I wish to be there
to open my eyes and see nothing
but a typewriter and an ashtray.
I want to look out the window
and see a sparse Los Angeles
free from traffic
dripping with youth.
I want to bump into three piece suits
private dicks
and women in furs.

6.
I sit at attention;
coffee, chocolate and mind
close at hand.
Like a small boy before thanksgiving dinner
poised for the massacre.
My pen is readied as his fork is raised
and when our customs are done,
his grace and my candy bar,
we will both carve into our task at hand.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Gonzo Poetry

Sweating
thinking of the greats that have passed
horrible examples of moral fiber
indecent people slinging one indecent thing
truth.
I want to drink with these swine
I want to laugh at inappropriate things
garnering curious looks from passers by.
I want to offend the offensive
I want to comfort the outlaw
the horrid man in the corner
holding a microphone in fear.
I'm worth hearing.
Stop crying!

Questioning the world
leads to many strange characters
a following of weirdos
freaks of the same flag.
I love these people
the perpetrators
the outliers of society
my coffee drinking brothers and sisters.

Swathed in a bathrobe,
a feeling akin to the pride of the pharaohs;
strutting about with a drooping cigarette.
Where are my sunglasses?
and where did the party go?

Nervous eye movements,
unconsciously sucking caffeine,
there are droplets on my brow.
Waiting for the words to line up just right
and I'll blow them out of my mind.
Chopsticks are worthy adversaries at this hour
even for skilled hands
my cup chatters against its saucer.
Glancing from typewriter to computer
am I showing favoritism?
damn that gorgeous machine
sitting in silence
looking down on me and my illuminated keyboard.
I'll get to you in a moment!
I lied.








Thursday, August 27, 2009

Downtown, then back home.


1.
A man on a crate
a weathered guitar
notes whining out.
There is beauty in his voice
not of a hardened soul
but of a man that will never suffer
the constraints
of another man's chains.
down the lane there are speakers
and crowds looming
around brightly dressed performers
screaming of love lost.
Here on the corner
the man sings
pure.

2.
Looking into an everyday portal,
parked on the side of the road,
wondering what could be
on the other side.
Glorious visions of luxury
a grandiose lifestyle;
or simply,
a life apart.
Beyond that reflection
lies a seat
empty
and cold.

3.
Glass, paper, metal and wood.
A collection of material things
close to my heart.
Silently stacked on shelves
a thousand eyes have moved over,
hands have held,
caressed and thumbed through.
Lips have touched some,
and hearts were made to flutter.
They do not define me
but they often comfort me
They will outlast me.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Love and Journalism

1.
Glimpses of love are better,
wandering in and out,
viewing from afar.
Hearing of romance
and genuine contentment.
Clumsy hands
don't work well with butterflies

2.
Watching joy wander about in a glass box
Slowly sucking in its last bits of life.
To break the glass would be selfish,
to watch it suffer is agonizing.
Someday the glass will melt on its own
and I will breathe the same air.

3.
A notion comes to the end and
slapping the platen back into place
I begin again.
I wish I could have heard
a press room full of sound,
a typewritten cacophony.
Watching the paper work its way out
looking like corn hurriedly eaten at a fair
moving steadily across the roller
and eventually hearing the intermittent bell
of a line completed.
The gentle click of keys in a coffee shop
is far from this delight;
an audible storm of words
whizzing about,
making their way onto a page.
Where has the romance of journalism gone?
Quiet writers exploiting from behind lattes,
outspoken ones splattered on television.
I wish I was there when papers landed on corners
wrapped in twine.
A frenzy of nickles flew from eager hands,
and people wept
until the next edition.


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Looking through windows is a curious hobby.

1.
Falling down
A nightmare
slow enough to feel the fear
of an approaching doom
miles to go
clouds obscuring the way.
I wish to be
on the platform again
happily unaware
of my own discontent
never questioning my safety
high above harm.

2.
Contentment
is dangerous
it leads to complacency
lethargy follows
then atrophy.
Being discontent
as a writer
is allowing the same fate.
Sitting alone,
working towards a transparent goal
all the while
your legs are rotting.

3.
Walking down the street
as I never do,
I came upon a fast food joint
and sat within
wondering why
I felt so tired.
I ordered a meal
onion rings
a burger
and tacos.

4.
What a lackluster moment
when the night becomes the dawn
the romance and mystery are lost
sitting here in stretched pajamas
wondering how holes have formed
on such docile clothing
An empty tea cup sits beside me
a brown ring inside.