Sunday, December 2, 2012

Fire & Ice

I’m not your friend
Until maybe tomorrow
Or Tuesday
My schedule is somewhat hazy
I could never pick the candy bar I wanted.

I’m not a disposable camera
I’m not an expendable employee
I’m not your favorite toy
Grown old and dusty and thrown to the corner
I will not be a soda can
Drained of its purpose and crushed into a pile
Of un-purposed matter
Although I know I’m deserving of it.

On windy days like this,
I would give my heart to be a buffeted tree,
To waver but retain that grip on the ground,
No more being dragged to unknown terrain
And dropped, disoriented, struggling to find my way
Back to the empty hole
Where I had just been standing.

I’ve said before
I feel as though I’ve lived ninety years
In twenty year’s time
Without the happy accomplished memory
That sometimes comes with age
Now I believe I’ve only lived an instant
Because past and future are both pictures
That continually flash and are burned
Because the only proof that they both exist
Is in my condescending scars
And the hope that sometimes fills me up.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


It’s been articulated in every direction,
Spilled from its carton by a boisterous child
And it’s dripping off the edges of the counters
And leaving footprints through the halls.
Some could say
It no longer needs attention,
And some could say
The mess it has left
Ought to be cleaned and sanitized.

But despite its history of chatter,
Love maddens me
As though a wire were strung through my chest
And looped around my heart,
And the further you walk away from me,
The more it burns,
The further I’ll walk where you lead.

The stories that do not leave me
That color my dreams
And sharpen my days
Hurricane around me with great force
And you, inexplicably,
Are standing with me at the center
You are the keystone in songs
That itch in my ears
And fill my skull with eerie light.

Some could say
That without you on this earth,
Beauty would pass through me like a window screen
Unconscionably unnoticed,
A golden spindle wrapped in graying thread.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

lithium carbonate

London’s on her way
Back into my eyes and ears
Like fog sinking down from the celestial plane
And wrapping round the weathervane.
Words come slower than they did,
Catching up their coats and dashing from the unemployment line
To see what the new development is and, hopefully,
To get a graveyard shift.

The sound of rain on the darkened asphalt of Palace Court,
Of tin foil clenched in a child’s fist,
Comes rampaging out of an unswept corner of the year previous,
And drenches me in fear,
The kind that fills up your answering machine with unrelenting calls.
The broken heater, the glass-top table,
And the loquacious sound of letters being opened,
Followed by sinking news of home,
These things bury me.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

New Jersey

“It’s time to help.”
Like a bath in chocolate syrup.
And as bright as lemons.
With no stacked absences.
And no tired glances.

With concrete waiting for my feet
And all the strangers I could meet
And no eternal last defeat
A life like brazen gold.

Answers come to those who wait
They come upon a silver plate
I’ll love the things that I should hate
And live before I’m old.

Space Invaders

Words line the roof of my mouth
Puff out my cheeks until holding them in makes breathing difficult.
Shaking with anger, or fear, or both
All cradled up in a fire of eyes.
Lusting after catharsis in the gloam of a computer keyboard
At 11:11 on a Monday evening
When words tumble out in sightly uniform

But bridges, heaped in ashes, safely burned
No sweet return with seemly lessons learned. 

Saturday, May 12, 2012


Concerning the business of finishing second—whether
Honey sticks to the palms of your little ones
Because it was sticky from the moment it dripped from the bottle
Or it became sticky once bonded with the soft flesh of hungry little hands.
Whether flowers in the garden die because they are not watered
Or if they die because they were fated to go unwatered.
A half-hitched hello is thrown to one
And a salutatory hurricane to another
In every half blind eye,
The kind that twitches in the act of chewing. 

The Olympics never famed a silver medalist. 

In the rainforest, when a green behemoth falls
To the leafy floor (a grand old sage who likely saw
The forests’ beginnings, when the old magi
Spun his honing wheel into green and brown
And sprinkled it out across the wet earth),
The only sapling to survive and take his place is the one
Who grew from the most favorable soil.
The lucky sapling who was intended from the start
To make the canopy seamless again.
God favors his fated favorites.

Keep the fiery fingers dormant in your chest,
Never allow them to escape,
Hold them at bay until the contents of your skull
Melt into a pool that seeps stagnant into the legs
And makes walking beneath the stuttering streetlamps
With your head up
An impracticality.

I’ll write another invisible epitaph
At three in the morning
Spin the words through my fingers in a manner that felt graceful at the start
But grayed with time, cracked along little weak points.
We’ll step toward the shadow of the stairs,
My left foot swinging outward slightly, habitually,
For an illusion of corrected balance,
And I’ll hold you back with everything in my arsenal
Other than my words and my arms,
But shoes pad their way up the stairs,
The door opens, the night rushes in,
And I’m alone again in the darkling house
With a familiar lovesick scent on my shoulder
And the air framed with yellow sparks.

Notes don’t come anymore,
At least, not like they used to.
I don’t trust them like I did
Not when the phone’s light illuminates a downturned face
And you get out of your seat and step outside
When every word that passes my lips,
That had festered in my stomach
And absorbed every inch of me
Is for you.

Four months in London
In a dusty room
With a stack of letters and a broken heater
And a capricious brain
But New Year’s came and went
Not with a bang but a whimper.