I remember going around with the kind of ass-kickin’ biker chick who’d French kiss your grandma, then squeeze her ass when first introduced. The kind of chick that’d knee you in the balls and never say she’s sorry
I remember droning out for hours to a particularly incessant ambient tuba dance tune that still buzzes in the solarium of my subconscious
I remember rusting gun metal blue and graphite gray with streaks of gritty orange rust – that deep dark navy blue of night, the rush of burning orange rust squiggling through. And then there’s Brad, the experimental jazz banjo troubadour being run out of town by a gaggle of girl scout street toughs, kicking and thumping (chased out for being, you know, slightly different, for being “stinky,” for we have taught our children well). Brad, all wobbly kneed and staggering, his banjo shredded, an invisible elliptical swirling around him, faster and faster and I struggle to slow it down. Brad as art, his ringing ears, his dizziness, his confusion, his stolen watch, his swollen shins, his distinguished dreams, his ringing skull, his hogwash and lies, his story about a decommissioned battleship he never has time to write, his glory. Yeah, but that was Brad for ya. His atonal banjo format never really found an audience, never did catch on. Brad
Brad, chased out of town, different, unacceptable
Brad, he met a girl out there (carol-anne to be exact), but ultimately she wasn’t “enthralled” and moved it along to eventually become a venture capitalist
Brad, bloated and gangrenous
Brad, another casualty of capitalism
Brad, alone, wandering the wilderness, wondering where it all went wrong
Brad, his passion, his struggle, his reeking body, his pungency
Brad, he had plans, hopes, dreams – he was going to buy a houseplant
I take a job as a janitor in a laundromat in order to collect clumps of frothy gray lint. I collect the puffs of expelled fabric, the expelled waste, and begin stuffing my apartment with them – spreading them clump after clump, small and large, puffy and flat until that great day when my place is finally full and complete and packed solid with soft gray lint. I pack and shape, forming tunnels and furniture so as to live in a big puffy cloud
. . . horrific visions of people I don’t know eating hot dogs. Close-ups of their now catastrophic mouths churning and devouring . . .
A little typewriter, perhaps two inches square, somewhere far off types just for me
My ability to take a punch. Saving up to have my head frozen. My “No humming” crusade. I burrow into the dirt and rocks, turning and burrowing deeper, like a worm. Me as the worm, burrowing, getting my church clothes soiled with compost and fresh, wet dirt and muck and dung. And I remember the rain. Do you remember the rain? And those flashes of color you could just walk right into and float off to who knows where?
I remember yesterday, celebrating my soup spoon in song and dance. Me as an imposter and fraud. The swap meet, the flea market. The oscillating, the throbbing
My footprints in the sand. Slowly leaning, cowering, hiding, shivering, crying. In a town where everyone dresses up in suits and coats and ties
Me shoplifting, my footprints in the mud outside your bedroom window
and squirrels chasing each other around in my stomach
And now it’s me, it’s all my fault. I’m so alone. No one listens. I just don’t belong. It’s all just that simple, that clear. Now it’s me who’s hiding. Now it’s me. It’s all my fault. I’m to blame. I’m so stupid
. . . memories . . . . all I have left . . . all I have to show for my life . . .
I remember it all now, so please give it all away. Please, please. Let me do something nice for you. Please, please. Take it all from me. Please change me. Breathe on me until I am new again
A place called emmmmuuuummmppphhhfffuuuugghhhhh that I dream of. Or is that just the corner strip mall up ahead in the shadows. My footprints as proof that I am alive, that I exist, that I feel. Ambient flashes, fuzzy strings of colors
I jump in a large pile of sawdust and roll around, and it begins to rain. Clouds in the sky. Debris of events, random pieces, lost fragments, torn scraps, all that is left, but now blowing away, away from my reach. But alas, I don’t understand the clouds, I mean, what do they know, anyway
People running and suddenly everyone else is gone and it’s just me left standing here alone. With the blur of everything else swirling
I remember her yellow sweater floating in the blue sky. Distant noises in the darkness. Her yellow sweater floating on the wind. Her hair blowing in the wind. Her hair rising up forever. I remember her quiet laugh tickling my ear, now but a whisper fading on the breeze
# EUGENICS NOTES
The impossible contradiction: would you
swerve to avoid the car in front of you if it
meant the death of a six foot stack of Jack-
in-the-Box fries? Good bones, as your
mother referred to them, are left in the culvert
under Rt. 76 while we clamor for the necks,
the coccyx, an endless stream of squid.
An army of snails marches on the capital,
but we have two years to prepare. We have
begun to train the lemmings to saddle, designed
the armor. All that remains is the lance,
the diamond tip that will pierce the shell, inject
drawn butter for the inevitable victory feast.
Have we stood in the way of progress? I
was under the impression we hitchhiked
from Saginaw to the source of the Entebbe,
but perhaps our thumbs caught progress
in the wind, turned it back upon itself
like a lens that collects the smoke, returns
it to sunlight. What matter when to drink
this water is to be slaked forever? We cast
about for branches, moss to build our little hut.
We demand only calamari, poutine, escargot.
# FREE RADICAL
if the electrons
leave the cow
we have swept
in the building
behind the fences
call the windmills
to see if they
will come but
on the other
side of the wall
and ask again
to the local
but are directed
to the jail instead
it’s always the same
the same landfill
in a different pistil
so we feel
to the closest
# HELPFUL HINTS FOR CHOOSING THE PERFECT KEYBOARD
Betty Boop cartoons are not
recommended for the contemporary
palate. Ghosts are known for their
propensity to provide unwanted
input; ignore them and they will
head back to Furniture and Bedding.
The loss of your favorite duvet
cover may prove an undue influence,
but it is possible to mitigate
this with a trip to the alchemy lab
in the cellar. A handful of vitriol
washed down with a screwdriver
or two may well serve to head
indecision off at the pass when
faced with the choice between
the teak/mahogany blend
and the nuclear option. Above
all, choose not with your spleen
but with your wings, old warrior.
blizzard of leaves
obscures the view
of the accident
on the other side
of the street
# OUT BACK
Shafts of light played across the gaps
in the beams, showed the floor below us
as we crouched, examined the darker
corners of the old barn, framed shots
for a movie we both knew, I think, we
would never make—two teenagers
so broke Karo Syrup was a stretch.
But it was 1982 and The Incubus
was on HBO and I’m pretty sure
that any two broke teenagers who had
a dilapidated barn within walking
distance of their houses knew
in their bones they had it in them
to make a horror movie. We could tell
from the rot which areas hadn’t seen
sun in years, tossed balls of twine
to one another, chalked blue marks
for hours until an older voice, full
of chaw and derision, shouted at us
to get the hell out before we fell
through those gaps and hit
the basement floor like the last
rays of the afternoon sunlight.
# QUARANTINE, DAY 38
when the heater
but the butter
like you just
pulled it out
of the fridge
# YOU SWEET TRANSIENT SCOUNDRELS, ALL OF YOU
The room is dark, save a single beam
of light. He sits, watches through
the square hole in the wall. Eyes follow
the beam. Stray light gleams
from his shaved head. He reaches,
without looking, into a box. Selects
a doughnut. Bites into it. Boston cream.
The film projected shows a man
in a dark room, watching a movie
from behind the projector. He reaches,
without looking, into a box. Selects
a doughnut. Bites into it. Chocolate.
The film projected shows a man
in a dark room, asleep. A movie
plays on the wall above him.
It alternates between black squares
on a white background and white
squares on a black background.
Letters flash on the screen, one
after the other. A, B, C, D,
and so on. There is no N.
Why is there no N?
We wait for the reel to change,
reach for a doughnut.
# Hunger and Lust
In Rancho Grande a couple sits in a corner with a severely retarded child,
a girl who could be three or ten, I can’t tell. At first
I thought the man was carrying an infant.
The girl is in one of those infant car seats, partly covered in blankets.
It’s in such moments I know what it means to be able to swab sauce
from a plate with a flour tortilla, to be able to rise and walk out the door,
everything, all the things you can do, since you can read this
and find a lover and sit in tree shade and kiss and maybe enjoy doing that
the whole afternoon. The preciousness of life—opening a can of peaches
with a can opener or filling the gas tank of whatever you might drive,
any of it. People say, to be happy to live a full life, think of others,
help others. To live a full life think of yourself, truly think of yourself.
Be selfish. I care first about myself. The great mystery:
opening a can of peaches or kissing under an elm, or reading a newspaper,
the really extraordinary lies in the ordinary. It’s only my thought,
and not some absolute truth. Absolute truth: there’s a severely retarded child
in a corner with two adults, presumably her parents. Absolute truth
of our five Senses. Nothing from the Bible, the Torah, the U.S. Constitution.
Put yourself first, if others call you self-centered so what.
But my thought is if you’re truly putting yourself first, respecting
yourself, loving yourself, you are, in a sense, the center of the universe,
connected to where you are, to whom you are with, and what.
So, in saying, Nothing means more than my life you’re saying, my daughter’s
life means more, also the girl wrapped in blankets in the corner.
1924. In a parked coupe a lit cigarette
falls in folds of Helen Hathaway’s dress,
antebellum pleats and ruffles catch fire,
a day later she dies. Schaeffer wonders
if the live ash was from her cigarette
or someone else’s. Her mother said Helen
never smoked, but in Is Love Everything?
she smokes lounging on pillows in bed.
Schaeffer sees the black coupe in shade
of an oak, set back on a hill of grass
in San Antonio. Only moments before,
on the set of Southern Charm Helen
with her dark good looks sipped a julep
and flirted with her beau on a verandah.
When he left, she took from her bosom
a torrid note that begins Dearest Love.
Under the dress the hoopskirt Helen
wears makes the dress flare at her hips.
The top is frills, ruffles, her death dress.
One live ash…no more promenading,
batting her lashes at a beau. Her body
a human torch flung from that coupe
into the hill of grass. Schaeffer wonders
Was she conscious her last hours?
# Schaeffer Is Next
The next vape, the next corner
To turn, the next day, he drove
To Maidenrock. It was a Saturday.
Schaeffer thinks of the adjective,
Then, next, please, please added
To soften the blow that one is next,
Whether one likes it or not. Schaeffer
Thinks, I’m next. He thinks:
The next vampire film, the next
Trip to Walmart, the next bite
Of the apple, the next diver
To leap from the plane and pull
The parachute string to soften the fall.
Don’t sit under the apple tree
With anyone else but Kim Kardashian West
Don’t sit under the apple tree
With anyone but Derek Jeter
With anyone but Taylor Swift
With anyone but a descendent of Clyde
Barrow, with anyone whose surname
Don’t do it, don’t sit there with
Casey Anthony, Susan Smith
Or Charles Manson
The next vape, the next hero
The next vampire, the next banquet
The next moment, who knows
Anything might happen:
A river might flood,
A tree might catch on fire.
There’s the Rita H angle
How she was glamorous in her voice
Her eyes, her long wavy red hair
Her spangled dress that hugged her hips
Glamorous in her walk in how she moved
Back and forth on stage
Under the spotlight in Gilda.
Then, spin the wheel of time forward,
Say, twenty years and find her
Alone in a room. Dementia
Has taken over.
She is cared for, incontinent
Can’t wipe herself or wash her
Once lovely hair. Oh,
The waking nightmare bird
Perches on her shoulder
That was once bare and aflame
With lust, all of her.
# Schaeffer Speaking
The blister in the palm of my hand found its voice,
the voice of the rosebush in the wind.
I tried to make it into another Charlie McCarthy
but it wouldn’t sit on my knee.
I tried to make it stand in a choir but it wouldn’t stand still
or wear the blue rode the choir wore.
Then I tried to make it a detective’s questioning voice,
then the voice of a paramour speaking on a lake bank
to his love whose back is turned to him.
I tried to make it the voice of a man trying to remember
his neighbor’s voice, a wife and a mother.
I didn’t like the blister’s voice.
I liked the voice of a man who worked in a tobacco shop
and the voice of a man who couldn’t live with
and couldn’t live without his mother.
Then the blister, having found its voice,
assumed the voice of a terrier, then the voice of a footfall
snapping a twig, and then the voice of a radio
personality who was rich all because of his voice.
I wanted the blister to speak directly to me.
It recited “The Whitsun Weddings.”
Then it assumed the cry of an infant,
then a man crying in a graveyard.
Physical pleasure is a sensual experience no different from pure seeing or the pure sensation with which a fine fruit fills the tongue; it is a great unending experience, which is given to us, a knowing of the world, the fullness and the glory of all knowing. Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet.
Tongue, you are my Mother
I am my language, lingua madre, matris lingua
my name, my real secret name
without the word, another I would be
tongue, my sensuality
if I lick the nipple,
suckle the teat
smell the skin, the milk
while I recite the word
faster and faster, silently
is it my mother's nipple
my lover's nipple
the great extended nipple of life
or is that a fictional trope
there is no nipple
no word for it
#Pain After It’s Gone
What if Love is the opiate of the masses?
What if Love is the revolution and its own repression by its own status quo?
What if Love is not all there is? Then what is? Does it already have a name?
What if we’ve made a new religion of Love and it doesn’t make any more sense than the old religions?
What if Love’s got nothing, got nothing to do with it?
What if what we take for love in dogs is genetically imposed blind submission to the leader of the pack and we’re all dogs and Love is the leader?
Or there is no love and no leader? No Big Brother of Love.
What happens when we find out that God is not Love, Love is not God?
Wait! Am I confusing dogs and gods again? Or Dad and gum?
Or dag and nab, which are Danish for should we or should we not
Felicity's arms are cross-hatched from the elbow crease to the palms
White with rough ridges of double skin, over soft white underskin
She doesn't necessarily wear long-sleeves to cover the pain insignia
They almost hurt me more than they hurt her now-a-days
I feel her scars in some way as my own, by caesarian section
To some degree those of all the ones I love, inside and out
Perhaps of all the primal screams blaring around the world
All the love of pain since the viper stung Adam
Bosnian bodies scraped across my living room floor
Indian rape-victims as names of state capitols
Eves stabbing me on every evil street corner
So, why'd they drink the Kool-aid at Jonestown?
I collect this pain throughout the day
In a cloth satchel grandmother sewed
At night metamorphose it into scars
To wear on my chest like medals
To show the world I am in the middle of life.
# Yes We Can’t
We can’t afford the revolution
not that we have something to lose
our houses in flames
we’ve seen this film before
there ain’t no happy ending here, amico
we can’t afford a reform
not that it doesn’t sound great on paper
change a few numbers for
the desired chemical reaction
we … the ... reaction
we can't afford moderation
sitting on our hands until both
hands butt and mind sleep
tingling that never becomes
an itch irrepressible
slip sleep to death
hurry, the ice is melting
slavery on the rise
I could but I have to meet
my lawyer for advice.
All winter Ivy had kept her feet in socks and old leather loafers, but the skin had hardened around the heels and cracked. In this web of fissures dark dirt had settled. She soaks her feet in water as hot as she can bear, water with a dollop of Sunsilk shampoo in it, and a teaspoon of salt, she coaxes the grime out with a pumice stone and a long nail file. Later, in the high, narrow bathroom, she runs bucketsful of water and washes and soaps herself. There’s only a little runny, colorless foam. She will get out, she will pull on one of the cotton nightdresses she has had for years, and, and—she’ll
paint her nails blue, no, pink, like candy floss or flamingoes, or velvety tulips (she had never seen flamingoes, and tulips only in florists’ windows). Pink is happier than blue. Yes, she’ll drag the little brush along her fingernails, leaving the whites carefully blank. This will take a while, if you counted the minutes it took the varnish to dry between coats, and then she would heat whatever was in the fridge and eat it in the living room, in front of the television. By this time, she’d be tired out, her limbs deliciously laden with sleep, but she would try to read a little before she slept (all she read these days were articles of a kind, urging feminism on much younger girls, and of another kind pushing special diets and self-care routines at them), and when she woke up it wouldn’t be Leila’s wedding day anymore. Ivy hadn’t thought she’d have to think up ways to keep herself busy while Leila, for the third time, decked herself out (in a tomato-red custom lehenga this time, she sent pictures) and said her vows to an unremarkable investment banker (his second time) she had brought to lunch once, months ago. She did say something about the wedding being small, not because she’d gotten into the way of getting married once every decade since the nineties but because her father, her bapi, her backer, was sick - his liver was in bad shape, and he-was-going-to-die-within-the-year-the-doctors-said and therefore, Leila and her banker had to wind up this business of getting married quickly, Leila didn’t think anybody had to be there at all, except for family and very, very close friends. Of course, said Ivy doubtfully, looking up over the rim of her glass of vibrant drink at Jasmine and Mehr - that was the last time they had all been together - and Jasmine had chosen that moment to excuse herself, she needed to pee, but Mehr, candid, fervent Mehr, Mehr who’d showed up at wedding one in a gossamer saree worn with a glittery bra and to its sequel stoned, had drawled, “She doesn’t mean us, do you Leila?” And Leila spewed, for some minutes, the kind of extravagant blather that was her specialty, something about a “tiny” pre-wedding party - just drinks and fooling - that they could “pop up” at, just a very informal do. None of them did, for Mehr died in the wake of their rendezvous, her heart gave up on her without warning as people had, she died alone (”Don’t we all?” used to be her constant, cheerful refrain), and Jasmine was in Denmark at a residency for women who were looking for ways to tell stories with photographs and paintings, and after work, Ivy crossed the city to see her mother at the old people’s home. Her mother was shapeless and yellow, like the yolk of a soft-boiled egg. She didn’t seem to know who Ivy was, but noted that she’d put on weight, and criticized in her vague babble the kurta she’d worn. And tonight, the evening of Leila’s wedding, she - Ivy - had given herself a pedicure, bathed, done her nails. She rubs cold cream in wee circles into her feet, Jasmine had showed her how to rub it in but not dab it down, they were fourteen then, fresh into high school. She thinks of Leila and her banker now, her new husband, in post-nuptial relief, looking into cameras, sipping from coupes; Leila’s terrible skin reposing under layers of makeup; Leila’s last shiftless spouse who couldn’t get it up, no licking-rubbing-coddling-kindness could get his damn thing convivially prepared to make love; Leila’s wealthy first husband, the spoiled fucking sonovabitch, beating her to pulp, “royal beatings”, Mehr would say, Mehr read all the time (Mehr dead!), through lunch at school and all night long when they were at college, Ivy smiled at the remembrance. Leila was making another go of it, Leila was forty-four, not all that old really, she was dropping the dalliance she had with the idea of living in a way that would let her enjoy the things she emphatically preferred - dress expensively, eat well, travel. Keep certain relationships without having to bother about special tact. Be free. Leila was giving in, Leila was giving up her mad notions with this third marriage. She would work out a domestic routine, plan meals, see a therapist and discover why, despite all the men and all the fixes money can buy, she felt like she carried a chasm within her. Regardless, she would be a good wife, she believed she could learn to be one. She puts down her untidy signature below the banker’s. She smiles for the polychrome crowd before them, made up of allies (his) and family (hers). Then it’s time to say their vows, she’s written them out specially, because the standard oaths have done her little good. “I promise to cherish—” she begins, but that’s not it. “In sickness and in health I’ll remain with you, Madhav…” and Leila falters again. People wait, Madhav, who’s just signed, waits. But Leila finds she’s forgotten her lines. Every word.
# Breaking plates.
aodhain sends a message
into our group chat;
asks for a book
he lent jack
with my stuff.
I throw him
a message –
say I'll drop off
a copy. he can take it
and read it
but it's the last one
I have. add
as a footnote
"I no longer
stand by it",
like a parent
of a kid
aodhain tells me
no – what he wants
is to own one.
reader: there's someone
who likes what I've done.
# The last day before lockdown
gone cockeyed in mulligans
last day before lockdown,
and I can handle booze,
that's fine, but went out
for some air and then fallon
had weed in his cigarettes.
and I don't know what it is – I
can't ever be cool on it.
two puffs, the room rotates,
boats at sea. I finish
my drink, buy another, don't
drink it. the boys debate seriously
about plans for the wedding,
and a weekend before, in north
spain. I excuse myself, leave
walking home slightly
cockeyed. rain is falling
already, but lightly
as fingers. night fits around me
like a soaking wet shoe.
# March 2018.
inside we were drinking.
outside, falling snow
broke its skull
on the rooftops
and steamed on the windows
like piss from a drunk. clothes
clung on tightly; everyone entering
sweaty as a wet cat. but still,
we were drinking. sat at a table
which clicked on our knees
and argued about anything
to keep the cold out. enjoying ourselves;
pointing for punctuation
and guzzling beer
which smelled in the glass
of wet leather. in dublin
the pubs are wonderful.
rain not a reason
to slow anything down. and blizzards
even less so – just a day off work.
coats all over, and the stink
of drying laundry. cold making entry
at every open
door. and nobody, for once
trying to fuck anyone else;
for drinking, political discussion and long
getting someone home
than it's worth.
# Eating a 3in1
early this evening;
curry sauce, yellow chips
chicken balls, rice.
it's not a good meal,
but I'm hungry:
it is a good meal.
the best drunk food
ever – keep your tacos,
your poutine, your local
equivalent. I dont like
it / I like it. I don't know
if I like it. but it tastes
like 4am, and like 22
years old. classes tomorrow.
maybe talking to a girl,
a cigarette. certainly going
to bed on my own.
like pavements on camden
st, like pavements
on grafton st, like pavements
in phibsborough - walking
dazed northward, pissing,
checking left for some light.
cracking my eczema'd
knuckles in typing
out poems –
the pain I go through
just to tell
of today –
the interview went well,
though my girlfriend
the sun felt
on a hill.
# You Are Invited to Speak
I want to hear your voice, small in a phone
or hovering large as I lie down. Either way,
your thoughts are in my head,
wearing dresses of your mouth,
and the eyes of your thoughts
blink in the night of how I feel.
I crave the bouncing tide
of your populating ideas.
As with any shore,
connection and contest spark life.
I wake in your words. The rest of me is sleep.
I want all the sounds of your throat,
the feel and smell of the air escaping it,
the clacking and swishing of your language machine.
I succumb to the conspiracy of your neck and face
to communicate. I dream of your lungs:
they’re red, walking through the earth.
Wildflowers throw up purple and pink,
destroying the path through the woods
until there’s only wild,
writhing with your sentences.
# Pornographic Fortune Cookies
eating rose petals instead of drinking tea in bed
blackbirds murmuring in bed
a man killed by lightning plowing circles in bed
pale geography collapsed over a map in bed
you will be sick for the entire life of a dog in bed
your arm gone numb in bed
night-headed windows in bed
an empty sagging bed in bed
# The Dreams That You Dare to Dream
Last night, Mama, I dreamed about a rainbow,
it was curving, like a rainbow does,
but it kept curving, like a big old snake,
it wrapped around my head, Mama,
so I ate it, to save myself.
Listen to this dream, Sid, this fellow,
this gentleman, he was calling on me,
you know, calling on me, I suppose
he was courting me, yes that must have been
what he was doing, I don’t know who he was,
you know his eyes were painted on
and I suppose I wasn’t being very
friendly, you know, and he was crying,
nothing loud or dramatic, but these tears, Sid,
these tears were falling and they were perfect,
perfect crystals, no, but they were round,
like crystal pearls, imagine that,
and I felt it so vividly,
swallowing every one.
You were there, Mickey, only shorter
and you danced like you were laughing
with your feet,
on these big curving stairs,
up, tapping like rain,
and down, like a river,
and up, and down, I said please stop
but when I moved my mouth the stairs
started chewing you, like some strange
kind of applause.
# Venice a Be Verb
Thousands of pigeons landing in St. Mark’s Square
maidens tying grey handkerchiefs into their hair.
Sunset peeling the skin from a city braced for night
an old doge whose wheeled pedestal retreats from sight.
Spiders surprised when the ribbons shift
your fingers, slow to open my gift.
# Poetry Law
You never hear of it until you need it,
believing there are no rules,
only expression of feeling and self,
but then a car door closes across the street,
a calamitous feelingless physics
demanding to be written without a hint of you,
and then what to do?
What is the cogent terror
of sunshine on a Buick window?
The Universe idles –
a sharp, specific devastation of insight
purring your own pointlessness
all the way through to the church of your skull,
ringing out a poem that the moon wrote,
but it bears your name.
Gently, you enter into suit,
serving tender notices,
waiting in a series of rooms
for a ruling on a contract
you signed in your sleep,
that was as blank as you were,
and you wonder if the gavel will wake you
or nail you to the page.
# Springtime for Truth
People whose only discernible goal
tap their knuckles on felt partitions
as they flash past the gaps.
I wonder if someone can die more than once.
I realize I can’t disprove it.
I make some measurements in the window
and then go down to the parking lot,
in the placement of trees and buildings,
enforcing a disbelief in other windows
to worlds I can’t get to.
The truth lies
on a bed of facts
more numerous than spark plugs,
and more charged.
The graphic designer across the aisle
erased her design
when she saw a swastika emerge from it.
She hasn’t really looked
at her rug, her favorite blanket,
or the tile floor in her bathroom.
The letter Q is a cross hugging itself.
Truth is a question, a quest, a quake,
a quiz I take so seriously
Tonight I must watch a movie
that’s more than 24 hours long
to know the truth
before it changes tomorrow.
Anon is soon.
The up and down of a pointless day
pulses like the heart of a coward.
Disappointment is surrender.
Fear is victory in the bloodstream
searching for a wound to exit.
The oblivion of winter
pushes me to slump into it,
begs me to ball myself up
and sculpt a frozen version,
but I’m not the snow.
I’m the plow.
The only postmodernism that still matters
is pasted to my AR-15.
This machine kills the un-alternative.
The truth lies
with a deep cover operative,
with dead leaves. No spin,
no election, will deter me.