Archive for January, 2016

Reality and Truth

Jan 29 2016 Published by under Poetry

My mind is like a haunted hostel room,

re-bunked after the murder of its hosts

with beds as hard as slabs set in a tomb

where lie the gods of gaps and holy ghosts.

Although I lock the doors, I draw the shades.

Like odors, they waft in and out of cracks.

A dank religiosity pervades

the halls, that cannot be dispelled by facts.

“If I could face the truth, they’d go away,”

I tell myself, to have someone to blame.

My demon taps my writing hand to say,

“Reality and truth are not the same.”

Does that have meaning? Is it in my head?

Were those words truer, which she had not said?

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The Grain You Left Behind

Jan 28 2016 Published by under Poetry

Why do you think, ten thousand miles away,

the sun will cast a diff’rent colored light

upon your birth, if all you see is gray?

Well, leave behind your old eyes, and it might.

It isn’t that the stars are all the same

from ev’ry mountaintop. The deserts’ sands

are not all just as sweet, nor is there shame

in tasting them, to sift them with your hands,

but rake the lot of sand upon the Earth

to find that single grain you miss alone,

in silence, late at night, that gives you worth—

you could have seen its glint and never known.

Run to the playground. Swing, and find it there.

Adventure in the sandbox, if you dare.

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For Sarah

Jan 25 2016 Published by under Poetry

Anonymous and clandestine as thieves

conveniently allied with common aim,

well-poised to strike and lurking in the eaves,

I saw a golden prize, and you the same.

The tension slid in better than a key.

You set the pick; I fumbled with the lock.

I thought, less than a minute, or you’d flee,

but you stood fast, as slowly turned the clock.

The seconds dragged, and I prayed to a cat

to grant a burglar nine tries and a pause.

You heard my invocation—that was that.

I flinched, but, coy, you said there was no cause.

You laughed and said, “I know a magic trick.”

In haste, I raked the lock and heard it click.

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I Am Still Here

Jan 22 2016 Published by under Poetry

It’s not as if a three-armed scarlet switch

is thrown at night, and all the stars explode

or flash like angry light-bugs in the pitch

to telegraph reversed electric code.

You set your letters carefully in type,

but, to my eyes, the signs fall out of place.

Euphoria turns slowly overripe.

I am still here, but not inside my space.

The walls do not grow ears, or eyes, or speak.

They grow no ears to eyes. I feel them hear.

I do not hear a voice. I know they shriek.

I know they have no eyes. I feel them leer.

I never hear a voice that does not speak.

My heel offends the gods; the floorboards creak.


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Jan 22 2016 Published by under Poetry

I’d like to say, “I don’t believe in ghosts,”

and once, for all, forget the bogeyman,

or else, I might request the Host of Hosts

deliver me from Jesus in a can.

Our name is “Legion,” (“Hey, that’s my name, too!”)

or “Daniel,” if a prophet you’ll believe

despite the proof we never give to you,

or is it past your power to perceive?

There’s no one, at a frayed end of a rope,

in ignorance, “God’s” voice cannot deceive.

You think “He” means you well—abandon hope.

The infinite looks on “Him,” not aggrieved.

Love looks on sin, and saves without concern,

without condition, while “He” picks which burn.

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The New Religion

Jan 20 2016 Published by under Poetry

This babbling stream of glitter, quips, and cats

assaults me like a furry, stripping clown.

I trip between the zoetropic slats.

Your Highness–going up or coming down?

What is this transitory half-dimension

like Escher in a mirror bubble brain,

a hive that plummets freely to ascension

inside a quantum, cosmic, perfect grain?

“Off with their heads!” bomb-blasts the King of Trumps.

“Off with their foreskins!” roars the One True God

of One Too Many Faiths, counting your humps,

like God could care to spoil some ape’s rod.

Are we on Earth? In Hell? No–better yet!

We’re jerking on the fucking internet.

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The Leaky Teaky (For Ben and Frank)

Jan 19 2016 Published by under Poetry

I cork my leaden verse in crystal glass,

set it adrift, to see if it will sink,

litter the sea with anchors cast en masse,

ink bottles, all around, but none to drink.

My words displace a spoon and weigh a log.

Before I’d cut the ballast, I would drown.

My captain, with his high-proof jug of grog,

is gonna ride the Leaky Teaky down.

I love my ship! I love its threadbare sail!

I know its busted rudder and its helm!

I love its hull! For all the bilge I bail,

my vessel, you have yet to overwhelm.

It was my uncle’s ship, his father’s ‘fore.

You’ll kiss its aft, and stroke its single oar.

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In Our Nature

Jan 18 2016 Published by under Poetry

The first snow put a cover on your tracks,

and, where I go from here, I do not know.

For days, I judged the gap by parallax,

proceeding straight as you went to and fro,

and yet, the distance greatened, to my shock.

You crossed the south horizon, and I knew

your wing was beating to be with its flock.

The wind had pushed you back, and so you flew.

I’ve often seen the little birds take wing

in winter, same direction, flap away

to greener climes, careening as they sing,

“Depart!” they tell this cobalt, icy jay.

Each fall I watch them leave, each spring return.

The blue jay nests; the robin red-breast yearns.

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Jan 14 2016 Published by under Poetry

If we may speak one word, we might be heard.

A picture’s worth a letter. Leave no doubt.

“Hello,” she said. It only takes a word,

one furtive glance, to see what we’re about.

Your soul cannot fit cleanly in a frame!

Your love is not a peep-hole through a sheet!

To overflow the box is not a shame!

You staunch with what’s at hand—it isn’t neat!

You rend the fabric—paper, branches—dirt!

Each person here is bleeding—plug the wound!

Is not the greater part of birth, to hurt?

Forgive my haste. You care; I just assumed.

It only takes a word, a tag, a pout,

one furtive glance, to wring our essence out.

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The Child of Your Want

Jan 13 2016 Published by under Poetry

My love is artless, obvious, and bland,

and seeks its image mirrored ‘cross the sea.

It has ample supply and no demand.

Your dynamo of want, it cannot be.

The whole that I can offer is a chance.

I will not gird the bud with carnal lips

that purse around a song to match a dance

presuming likeness to great Shiva’s hips

revolving ’round a fragile, desp’rate seed

when He dances for All, and they for tips,

when they destroy for fun, and He for need.

A hanging man lets go; a newborn grips.

There’s one chance for this nascent son of man:

Take ownership as parents—form a plan.

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