Full Collection

The Mother Who Sits In Her Room

The tired have come to provoke you, the wretched to hold flame to your feet. Because the mindless who eat and say as they’re told are huddled behind walls of clean paint -the small and the useless, the contrived and the meaningless: materialists, socialists, capitalists, activists -the miniature millions will never wade through the seas,…

Old Soul

Gone for the winter but I’ll be back in the spring. I’ll be back for the warmer weather -back for family and holidays, my mother and sisters and friends. I’ll be back for the great lessons of seasoned professors and pages, and pages, and pages I would’ve read by the pool in June, or at…

Proper Disturbia

I’ve again picked the wrong major, ten minutes into the second class I can already tell that – this isn’t the scene for me. Black cashmere, Eddie Bauer plaids; retro Doc Martens, soft spoken emotions: your poetry better enunciate pulpy vulnerabilities. The Professor has asked me to share my thoughts and my diaphragm spasms a…

To Quote Walt Whitman

Are there pastorals in a pixel?I’ve heard it said so.That a perfect moment holds life’s memories…yet the playback waits for death. No better than the worldin a meek man’s hands:show me the roses growing naturally in the graveyard,or a romance with a wick for the years. We can get high enoughif we run the old…

A Stable Life

For three years I’ve sat up in my tree, in the shade of dreams, and the roots have slowly been drying up. For three years catching wafts of the vinegar and rotted fruits, of our American Dream, recessive trait of responsibility. Who knew at the age of 22, hot-blooded crotches and itchy skin for sunshine,…

Repeat Offenders

There weren’t any horizons past those hillsides when we met — close-quarters of narrow suburban roads, barking dogs and neighbors and the claustrophobic push of childhood homes. Get back indoors: our engines had failed us. College dropouts returning, strangers, watching old friends warily lost in TV dinners and home decor trends. Tell your mother to…

The Drums They Beat

Arm in arm go the couple in white, down the aisle, through the crowd. Vows told in lace, speaking secrets in the midday sun: a bouquet soars across its yellow face. Consummation is a popular word for their grandparents. There’s a quiet announcement in the newspaper: congratulations. Congratulations from friends and family, a high school…

A Simple Confusion

Midnight had fallen on me fast with sprawling soul. Loosed from denotations, in a reverie wandering towards home; hidden pockets between buildings where the dark was densest, where mysteries held fast to their own little worlds. I had no ground. I had no self but the faint sounds of crickets and cars in the distance,…

Damnation for the Lost

I’d placed my faith in the wisdom of famous nomads, taken flight from safe restraints. Gone were the dreams of childhood, the joy of birthdays, familial affection. Hunger for the sun-bleached highways and the beauty of unwalked streets; afternoons of careless horizons. The college dormitories, the dust of traditions, tuition and careers and the map…

Desperate Lover

I’ve been walking your forest for miles, miles that have turned into months. Deep nights in the strange black of squawking sweat-dreams; the rats that dart through leaves underfoot. I’ve seen the ages of your ancestors carved into trees, behemoths, knotted and twisted, and the gold of sunrises that fade away before the bright green…

Stone Birth

I didn’t make it to school today because our car wouldn’t start. It might be the lack of gas, might be the oil congealing, might be the gears stripped of teeth in the transmission. So we stayed in bed and made pancakes for breakfast. It’s not the first class I’ve missed, and it won’t be…

Stultify

We had three bedrooms and a garage for the car. We had hardwood floors and a full-size stove, we had an attic to fill with boxes of things we didn’t use. We had a king-size mattress that didn’t squeak, we had kids’ toys in the backyard and a dog that only barked when strangers approached…

Black Dog

I kept the blackout shades drawn tight, dim room. Dim city sounds through the walls, barely audible. Drowsy yellow light from my bedside lamp — it was a small room, filled with yellow uterine warmth. I had a bed, and a desk, I was very fortunate, I had a mini-fridge and a carpet and a…

Modern Heat

What are these ghosts that hide in our dreams? The smiling beasts that stick in the shadows while we sleep? A bed sopping sweat in August heat, fuse blown, waking up to hangovers in the middle of the night. Reach for the bedside reservoirs of Excedrin. Reach for the bottles of water beneath the mattress,…

War for Virgins

  It was you who took my hand, but we led each other in. Two kids at the end of a roadtrip, tangled and happy, ready for more. More heartbeats, more walks, more explorations of foreign shores, lined with milestones. We had a city full of smiling streets, a friend behind every door. We had…

Capitalist Prophylactic

The grass was short on the ball fields. Lazy Sunday afternoon, and the park was mostly empty: alongside the poolhouse on a picnic table, behind a row of tall firs, the girl was telling him about her campus. She made it seem wonderful, the library and the classes and the student activities. She was two…

Peripatetic Graduation

Much has been learned in night’s corners, of drowsy bars, streets with echos, women’s love: The loneliness of street-lamp walks home, pre-dawn, dew a million glints of regrets and what-ifs. Hangovers that last till Tuesday. Body aches that cramp in class and the sweet red-head, warm bust, who turns round in her seat no more….

A Retrospect

Suburbia plots boring Friday nights — verdant roads winding along little houses with front porch lights. A poor place to put a college campus. Which goes to the reason the twenty-something finds himself standing, quite stoned, in front of the “cat house”. For lack of better things to do. Small-town campus monotony, he would like…

Rising Tides

In the mornings the big house smelled of ocean air, cool shadows in the hallways, a chill to the couches and chairs not sat in since the night before; his older sister’s book lying open on the alcove’s cushion. The sun soon to chase away the comfort of quiet dawn. Before the house awoke, before…

Must This Be Masochistic?

Originally published at SuddenDenouement.com You told me to buy presentable clothes and I did, a whole new outfit from Target. Neat slacks and spiffy shirt, even found shoes to match. And now here I am dressed like a fish trying to understand what it means to breathe air. We’re toddlers on a see-saw, you and…

Come With Me to the Great Wide Sea

The sleepy neighborhood turns slowly with the dawning sun. Morning yellow, sky refreshed; the cool damp rising while bathrobed husbands collect papers and garbage cans. Older mothers out for a run; sleepy drivers dressed for the day creep their cars by, sometimes wave. Younger siblings prepare immense bowls of sugared cereal. Yawns and crotch scratches…

Heat of September

Hours of sleep vibrate away in the sticky heat of yellow street lights. Indian Summer, Fall semester, nocturnal emissions lost in hopes of dust, waking daydreams. Corners of the dormitories safely lit with yellow spotlights. Not a name, not a whisper, not a footstep to be heard in the alleys and the campus yards. His…

Anecdote of Fools

The campus looks greener in the dark. Long lawns of grass and the old ivy’d buildings at the top of the hill. The floodlights glowing up from the foot of the oaks and the towering maples and the smoke wreaths in your hair. This would be the third night in a row we’ve come here….

Rebuilt

  Originally published at SuddenDenouement.com The rain had beaten holes in our backs and it was my idea to come here. 2,000 miles from home. You owned a Mazda and I owned a dream, and together we had $40 and no place to sleep. So we did what we always did best. We scrounged, rags…

Formless Mister

It is Tuesday and I am chasing sticks-and-bones down the winter street. Not chasing, following. I don’t think he can run. He has no meat on his bones, only femurs and ribs and a spine etcetera, and the sticks in a silhouette, an outline of the man he is, something you can see through. No…

Leave your ease in New Jersey

You’ve been spending time with your mother making decorations for the holidays. Crafting kitsch for the doors and the halls, small moments made-up for the years you lived out-of-state. Progress in your own home is slow. Rent checks are never late but your husband is rarely in for dinner. Your own job seems to be…

Glass Castle In A Vase

I find myself in one place: it’s too intuitive to be real. A man of stature and possibility beaming a light that shines no farther than the wall. Certainty is absurd said Voltaire. Yet I am certain I have four limbs and a set of ribs and a cock between my legs. I am certain…

#1

My professor has a warm crevasse beneath her dress that I imagine is just like a bed. She won’t ask me questions in class; and when I try to answer I always end up feeling inferior. The other students are clearly smarter, loaded with logical processes and the skill-sets that will lead them to success…

This piece is numerically titled

We came here looking for your mother’s seeing-eye dog. The park is bright and green and not too crowded, and the open spaces seem to swallow sound. There are stores across the street, apartments and the lazy midday city traffic. We thought the dog had perhaps come here. I let you walk ahead to lead…

Glow-In-The-Dark Annuals

You were sitting outside the bar on the patio, picking petals from the daisies in the planter on the railing. I was seated at a separate table nearby, because you had asked me to find another seat. We weren’t speaking for the moment: the conversation had been high-tide with an undercurrent I was too stupid…

Consciously Insignificant Moles

I kept a calendar at my desk, and I had binders of papers and a collection of pens, and a bobble-head that reminded me of saying Yes. I sat in the air-conditioning all summer, and got to stay home when it snowed. I had responsibilities and people who looked up to me for answers to…

Courage 7 miles from town

We used to make campfires out of sticks, bonfires out of pallets and the couches we’d find left behind in the clearing in the woods. A long dirt trail seven miles back, far removed from the indolent suburban roads. This is where we roamed under starlight. Midnight, the blackness viscous between the trees. We backed-in…

Glue, it’s the social illusion

They took us out to green pastures when we were young. Gentle folds of fragrant earth open to us, long warm roads winding to focal points beneath the horizon; wheat fields expansive. Open. Blue skies and the right to die beneath a willow with no one’s name. The dark mysteries of night and the thousand…

Dear J. Alfred Prufrock

Futility in the pages of decades old poetry, mold in the bindings of our 50-year-old dreams. Do you remember cliff-diving outside of Santa Ana? The strangers we lived with in the woods, new friends from San Francisco. Dancing lost footsteps on the sidewalks’ lyrical chalk, a young folk band busking towards Denver. Making love in…

Throwing kitsch at passing cars

Skunked beer spills the counter and soaks into the food. Cans flung at walls, at furniture and doors; cans scatter the floor. Head lolling in lonesome; drunk, happy isolation. Enjoyed for the moment from my kitchen chair. Last week I had a bar-mate tattoo on my chest at random his choice of senseless petroglyphs. I…

Still can’t find something pleasant to say

The chain breaks at one of two ends. I’m certain I have the world in my hands but can’t make it to stand two whole days without imploding. The gift-wrapped box in the sky with bow-ties engraved with my name, I can have it: in the land of the free in the 21st century, any…

Atavistic Vital Signs

There’s a whole city downtown we’ve been meaning to check out. It sounds cool. Bars, clubs, art galleries, several eras of architecture set in stone and glass. It seems exciting, to think of the lives bustling up and down elevators, and in and out of boutiques. Eating $100 plates of steak and whatever that dessert…

To wander away from peace

We found ourselves along the lakeside at dawn, no sounds but the birds and the gentle words you whispered to me. You wouldn’t come with me to Boulder. Suitcases stuck in the corner of your closet that I’ve been living out of; the thought of crawling in there for another 6 months made my stomach…

Modern Man Don’t Stand No Chance

I don’t know what brought me here, I’ve awoken from a nightmare 4 years in the making and find myself strangling with a JC Penny tie around my neck. I sit in bed in the early a.m. and I don’t look at you – I don’t look at the bed or the dusty typewriter on…

Dream Catcher Never Understood The Bus Schedule

The library has been converted into classrooms for fifth-year students. Shelves emptied and rearranged to fit rows of desks, projector screens, faculty offices and the Office of Student Retention. My exam is running late to complete. I am tapping fingers on the desktop nervously rapping away. My feet twitch uncomfortably. I scribble out essays and…

God found a better job

I hear echoes in the walls, the rattlings of a voiceless savior. Bills pinned to the pantry, I can only sit here and drink and clear my head enough to think that maybe there’s a way to clean the water from our floors. It’s been pooling here a while, coming up to our shins, late…

Street Sailing Saviors

Our heroes here are dirt. Defenestrated from monumental buildings for being obscene. Badly in need of showers and clean clothes. New clothes, but only second-hand. Body odor is the cologne of pride: a dog that marks its territory in alleyway cardboard clutter. Piss puddles on the steps of the legislature, Example #1 having remembered where…

False Hopes and your Eyes half closed

Long nights awake in bed, my tired circuitry is sparking with the energy of a jazz band. There is so much to be done in this life, but at 1am there is nowhere to go. Just to sleep. By 6am sunlight is faint, and my eyes are heavy enough to witness unconscious dreams of greatness…

A Pleasant Feeling

Here on the roof day-drinking and we are quiet. The talk was small for the most part, and eventually when the talk began to loop ‘round to politics and the spirit world, we silenced ourselves, and gave ourselves room to think quietly. Up here on the roof day-drinking – Spring is new and Winter is…

Sacrifice Is A Black Latex Suit And Tie

There is a black latex suit filled with stuffing beside my bed. Just standing there, really, for long afternoon hours. Bills are tacked to the walls to keep them from getting lost. They’re difficult to find once the power’s turned off. I admit I have never voted: confusion filing my application to the Selective Service….

Death By Rush-hour

We saw ourselves marching down the parkway at dawn, head-long into traffic, carrying signs and beatnik anthologies – at night while the city slumbered we remembered what the next day would bring: Defiance on the turnpike. Sitting on the footbridge drinking bum wine and trying to rap, at night, to pass the time; feet hung…

I’ll Stray My Time

Louisville. I recognize these city streets. I lived here once for several years. This is the corner the bus drops off the grifters who collect $20 a day from college freshmen. Over here is the coffee shop called The Night House by the sleep-deprived who drink black coffee at 2am, and then again at 3…

Constellations of Oblivion

There is blackness shattered in the cracks of the small bare-wall room. Puke on the throw rug bought at Target left sitting for three days straight. The wracking of the nerves leaves shuddering on the bed the infant who tried to escape their fate by running for his god damned life, halfway across the continent…

They Eat Through Your Skull

There were rats in our ceiling though I know you couldn’t hear them. The house was crowded, it was loud, little house reverberating with the sound of New Year’s tidings. You were speaking to your friend’s parents, the ones who work at a hospital, and my sister was planning her wedding. Everyone was talking, everyone…

Merry Christmas, I’m Dead Inside

The boxes beneath the tree tremor with soft scraping sounds etching into the cardboard from the inside-out. The tree is dry and I haven’t watered it since you dragged it into the house, put it up yourself and strangled it with lights. The strands flicker electrical shortages. I am in the armchair across the room,…

The Moon, Lost In The Fractal

It was a dead monkey I heard say it, is how I know this to be true; deep in the verdant jungle where nature still appears real, the hunted-dead monkey said to me, “All life has a point.” I agree this is ridiculous, that a dead monkey spoke to me, but anyway that isn’t the…

Walking Away From The Dying Dog

A silence rings hollow in the bell-tower each afternoon. I can hear it ringing truthfully from my den where I’ve established, a little nest where I can come and forget that only corpses sit in the pews. Only corpses sit in the pews, and any statistic will beget that as many as 10,000 pederasts are…

Little Mister Full of Promise

Here are ten years spent searching for the antithesis of a life uselessly lent to Keurig machines brewing, daily traffic migrations idling, flat-screen TV’s streaming: Here are the screams of the mad-eyed peeling their scalps to let out the vacancies eating away at their brains. Here are the years spent shifting desks in dormitories where…

Anhedonia and the Abyss

The future is felt like a big open sore, suppurating raw – like putting fingers in the wound, to pay the future any mind. I can give it no concern. I am supposed to file forms to meet important collegiate deadlines, but I think I’d rather just sit staring at the back of a stranger’s…

Depths of Something Disturbing

It began with a long day in bed when I slipped too deeply into my head… Short walk to class, an hour long now trying to avoid the eyes of each person I pass by. I am the person walking up and down the same flight of stairs, convinced, utterly convinced this is the quickest…

Please Help Please

The stars are out the sliding door and I’ve been told why it is they seem to sparkle. Their positions are not defined. They vibrate between states and to turn a microscope on the macroscopic is to find these stars popping out and popping into the void, little holographic gluons in your telescope. Make of…

Forever In A Moment

The college square has no strife, early morning in clear light, students passing in quiet voices spoken to friends. This – the soporific morning hum of students abiding schedules, making their ways to class – scene comforted by the recentness of sleep and waking dreams. Students texting, drifting by on long-boards, I sit here on…

Ineffectual Malaise

America, I no longer wish to heal your wounds. I see your wounded nursing bruises from swift kicks received on the Fourth of July, and Thanksgiving, and Christmas, and a few times every Valentines’. I would like you to know I do not approve. But you see I might have to go to work tomorrow,…

How To Suffer For Your Dreams

The jungle floor undercut with gnarled twisting roots, ankle-snappers, watch your foot, through the verdant thick that’s only green with promise, and when the sun sets the dark is impassable – but there is no time to sleep, step by cautious step hands feeling along the jungle floor. Some days the sun’s high but the…

Disgust

She sleeps a turmoil in a tangle of sheets, respite from a 60-hour kitchen week; beside her I lie and I cannot blink, let alone sleep. I twisted the bed sheets and swallowed the knots and there they sit deep in the pit of my rotting gut. I have rolled through the muck and masturbated…

Let Them Silence You

The mothers again have taken to baking their babies into walls around their Gucci gardens, and the fathers are found soliciting sex dolls to drive their careers far from town. The zeppelin overhead shines the face of democracy, and the bureaucrats have barred my door with towers of papers to be filed. Skeletons stalk the…

Public Paranoia

The foyer is empty before anyone is out, early-morning campus. The floor tiles smell dusty, in a custodial, public school way underscoring the surreality of this normally bustling foyer that is right now empty and hollow. Empty and hollow and echoes reverberate from maybe down the hall or from the second floor, but the foyer…

I can’t be sure where I was supposed to be

The store is harsh white bright lights with splashes of green the brand color, peach square floor tiles and faux-mahogany wood, and the person behind the register with hands squarely planted on the counter shoulders up, What Can I Do For You? in a tone done repeating himself. I have come to the wrong place….

Sad Lack of Beauty Rotten Writers

I’ve been to critique groups with Marilyn, they all smell of dust and the boredom of spare time. She has hobbies now and actively participates in her community. I believe she even votes Democratic. She is always happy has a husband and a 401k, flowery vacations to romantic isles she has a hobby to write…

What is Written On The Faces… Consuming

The faces are in the bricks one by one piled into the wall. I can feel them staring and observing and criticizing; the cardboard houses shutter beside the dumpsters as the crows ascend, fleeing. I can feel them watching as I crawl from the alley. The faces are in the windows a hundred stories high….

Servitude Sine Qua Non Capitalism

The daily sweat burning August sun into the red of my neck, head bent day long placing pavers up a driveway to a three car garage. Exhaustion is when limbs get numb, dehydration underestimating the volume of a gallon water jug. When the lamppost by the cascading stoop comes on, lights an orb with edges…

How To Undo My Metamorphosis

I am the exoskeleton on the couch, the shell with six stick legs that kick with random ticks of subterranean neural sparks. The cushions here are comfortable. I can’t remember what I’ve been watching on the TV. The TV seems to be off. There are beer bottles brown vessels empty on the coffee table glued…

In Pursuit With Excitement

I am running today. There’s a length of road unfurling from a spool I dictate; on this side green idyllic valley, on this side clean urban culture, up ahead, a destiny. The running isn’t running, it’s a brisk walk that won’t wear me out, but the scenery changing and the unfurling fast enough to keep…

Being Who You Want To Be

I’m in a hole and the six feet of dirt over me is the refuse of every project I half-heartedly take on. This is my circular dream and I am a square inside of a square inside of square inside of square. My dream is circular: naked before rust-stained flannels and jeans faded by months…

Wordpress runs on comment karma.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s