Archive for April, 2013

The Ladies Don’t Want to Be Here

Sadness blows gray puffs from her turquoise.
Plugs don’t plug, and wires cross paths
with irritable tempers floating on the scum
of dirty rugs, where mirrors from monitors
shatter self, bright logs that support nothing

but pink coffins. Some gracefully leave
urgently, if only to save their remaining
sensibility, to float away with sticky wings,
unstuck but for the grace of gods who visit

only occasionly, who (the gods) sneer helplessly
at squeaky, rolling chairs, and the wires spark
despite masterful electrical architecture. The one

with the tubby brain thinks herself important
despite evidence to the contrary, thinks
the customers should love her, arrogantly,
just as management would want, but it is this

that is most insane as we watch time fly
by our worthlessness, laughing (time) at our ugly
building, crying at our tireless, circular motions,

wanting (time) to take us out of the game forever,
and all of this makes me want my Mozart.


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My PAD Was Super Bad

An apology doesn’t seem necessary, but sometimes I like to work at explaining my failures. I thought the Writer’s Digest Poem a Day effort for National Poetry Month would be a good thing for me to join in on, but I should have considered it more carefully. (I wanted to understand why some things get a day, some a week, and then poetry gets a month. Puppies only get one day, and if I were in charge, I’d give puppies a whole month and strip poetry down to one day with the side benefit of only needing to write one poem each year in celebration; however, I think it’s not that way because puppies don’t need much help in being lovable, but poetry sure does.)

I didn’t start PAD until the fourth day, clearly demonstrating my propensity for procrastination, but I thought no problem, Read the rest of this entry »

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Who Left Me Dead Alive?

If the music gets loud enough, I feel
the escape of despair, and I scream
with dizziness, though I never say it
as well as the musicians, and I’m left
wondering why I’m pale and so muted.

Freedom, let’s catch the bus as it leaves
the station, jumping up and down on the tin
roof, grabbing the crumbling cement,
passing under structures meant to bury
us, swallow us, throw us away.

Superman and I rage against the wind
as we jump from rooftop to polluted roof-
top, scrambling to locate our missing
hearts, rumbling through city forests,
making pancakes out of cement trucks.

Screaming in my twisting intestines,
coughing, blowing out clogs, who is it
who shut me out from my art, who has
splayed me, sucked out my screams,
removed my hums, left me breathing?


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When it Hits Hard

When the empty comes back, I ask
what’s wrong, try to breathe big air

in, and the air won’t go. The medication
makes me feverish but it won’t fill

my hole, and nothing is allowed into
my empty, so I think about how

smooth death might be. This ugly,
bald survivor with whom I cannot talk

squashes energy death requires,
so I am a broken man, empty,

and I wonder why empty causes
such excruciating pain. I wonder

why some power will not end this,
long for courage to find violence.

Pass, pass, pass, pass, please.


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Art in Writing

PAD day 13 instructed us to write a comparison poem of some type.


Art in Writing

Art’s not puerile, but childhood
is fair, not the same old thing,
not dual combinations of words
heard thousands of times, not

preachy but will often teach, will
lighten the world we’re in with
truth, something you might read
twice or more, where art will

say a thousand different things
on a thousand different reads,
where you may need to think
and think hard, but when

not art, you’re expected not
to think, not to question, not to
slow down, so how to enjoy?


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Brain Broke

A day late again, but here is my piece for PAD day 12 which was to be a piece about the word broke.


Brain Broke

Not as broke as I was
in the early days. Broke
is what we use for a bank
account or a car, but for me,
broke was my brain.

There are days, nothing
but broke, and when I’m
broke all the way, I cry
hard, and the blubbery
actions help relieve me.


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In Case You Didn’t Know

A day late, and always short on dollars, here’s my shot at PAD 11, a challenge to write a poem involving the phrase “In case…”


In Case You Didn’t Know

The lady in front of you, crawling,
intensely tight, lacking a gas pedal
is not attempting to make you late
for work. She had eye surgery two
weeks ago, and not one of her four
children was willing to take her

to the doctor today, that the boy
presently trudging across the bridge,
looking up as if looking for a space-
ship is not contemplating suicide
by jumping off the bridge as you have
concluded, mostly because you
have never seen someone walk
across that bridge and he does look
spaced and gone from this world,

that when you are thinking you
are a failure, you might be wrong,
that when you also feel gone from
this world, you are here, and some
slice of fucking goodness makes
you persist in this increasingly

futile activity, that sometimes, no
matter how hateful some may seem,
sometimes, some people like you,
that they are battling demons and
they grip tightly to prevent you from
seeing this in them, but you don’t
talk and no one talks to you,

so in case you didn’t know, you are
not alone, but life is the loneliest
plot created by those before us.



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What Is Wrong at this Moment Right Now

PAD 10 requires a poem about suffering, which I’ve never done before, but I decided to craft a Cinquain.


What Is Wrong at this Moment Right Now

I brew alone,
but when I don’t fight back,
when I ask myself what’s wrong now,
Carl’s fine.



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Me and the Woolly Black Bear

Today’s PAD prompt, in honor of two for Tuesday, was to write a poem about the hunter or the hunted or both.


Me and the Woolly Black Bear

He is my rear shadow, the woolly
black bear. He doesn’t have
a name, and shadow because he
spends his time coming

after me, always getting close,
but not killing me. A few times
were close. I almost surrendered.

He’d love to eat me. He wouldn’t wait
to cook me. He’s fierce, and the winds
from his claws cause my hair
to fly like when I’m on a motorcycle

without a helmet, and a helmet
would be good when he’s
after me. I know it’s his nature,

but his battering and clawing
create tremendous distress. We
treat it with medicine, but my prayers
go unanswered, for I wish

the medicine would kill the woolly
black bear. I see a kind
lady, a doctor who specializes

in people who are traumatized
by these black bears,
and when I am with her, I
become the hunter, and

very rarely, I imagine I have
killed my tormenter, but it’s
never true, he’s never dead,

so I’ve learned not to celebrate
when it seems he’s dead because
his absences are far too short. I
am hunted, but I try to use

my injuries to help
others and sometimes, I forget
about my woolly black bear. Though

I know better, during these times,
for short spats of time, I celebrate
his absence and love the world.



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Lessons on Madness and Flow

Today’s PAD challenge was to write an instructional poem.

Lessons on Madness and Flow

Rolling back, go gentle,
pray with the blackbirds
as they scatter to the soft

trees, trees bending graciously
with bright air, and remember
the leaves are moving for you,

so move with them and when
particles of evil come after you
fast and hard, duck down on a

slight bend and feel the energy
as yours, and if someone greets
you, smile at the beauty of being

there and remember those knives
from people who don’t know you
are false, and dig with integrity

to live as you wish, and this I tell
myself, each day, trying to be
the man I want to be someday.


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