Saturday, July 5, 2014

A new diner

off little river turnpike
open 4 lanes, looks
like Virginia when
it moves south
becomes flat,
lays itself out,
goes forward into
the real south
finally, firmly
out of DC
to become real--

not planned constructed
white washed
cluster of white collar
suburbs high tower
and everyone living
in some condo-hotel
purgatory like apartment situation
where years go by feeling like
you're on vacation never home
and suddenly you've got nothing--

and then up ahead dust covered open--
roads less than 10 minutes out
squat colonial style red shingled single
storey cross-hatched white painted
windows breakfast specials coffee
smells and something like true american
landscape brings you home--

while not very far away the
white dome glistens the capital
street burns the monuments watch
and Washington keeps on going,
painted white, replete with statues
of old gray dead men,
living out it's own fantasy,
it's strange desert existence,
surrounded by the oasis of the living,
casting its antiquated mirage.

Happy ever after

Sometimes Bukowski is
just too sad for me,
harping on death,
thinking about death
all the time, sitting and drinking,
angrily growling
at the page.

Kerouac, too, with his death
and compassion, and poor Gerard's
death, so young and frail, and Joyce talking
of death, writing about death, death,
death, Dublin and death and sadness.

Sometimes I'm too sad for myself,
blank pages make me sad,
and pages filled with text, thoughts,
any sad thing just stacked
like boxes in old gray warehouses
where people die and go to
die and waste their sad lives dying.

Sometimes sadness and death
is all there is to write about.

Every story ends with death,

even the ones unwritten.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Fourth 4th; Hawkeye

screams and screeches
I'm at my desk,
don't ask,
I'm somehow always here,
always listening
to the slow start
ignition turn of the day
afternoon smells were
morning memories
were pure blue sky
flying home rumble-strip
strep-throat jingle jangle
clouds airy/see-through
bundles of white mess
children playing so small
and meaningless beneath them
flash of color 100 years ago
fantasy just before World
War I american kids blasting
fireworks gawking at sky
same thing tonight but cellphone
selfie pics with blasting
powder splash/color/crash
only thing is now there's
less to wonder at except for
by abstract-math-what-animal-
now, praises go to time
and the idea of humanity as
evolution as philosophy--
but ignoring the past, forgetting mistake
is systematic, symptomatic of something
else, of withering away,
of ignorance, in thousands of years
we've forgotten more than we've learned,
and we'll continue to do,
if only to tear up the ground and the
birds and people and the cats
and the dogs and the children
for little green pieces of paper and
numbers in a bank account,
god bless lady liberty and the liberal eye,
things are working out alright,
I can see it perched in my chair,
I'm watching bullets fly,
rockets explode.

And that's as real as it will ever get from here

bells clang to the hour
voices below
on street,
quiet suburban street,
where no doubt
picnics and bar-b-ques are

slow drawl of daylight/
sunlight breaking clouds,

grind of plastic on

chair legs? can't think
of anything else

somewhere a father scratches his
ass, thinks about relatives,
burgers, beers, wife, kids,
friday off and this is what I got
to put up with?

he grunts or sighs

he heads back into the house

coffee is heating breakfast is waiting

or at least I like to think,

but whatever if it's not and
all the same it's happening
out there in my head
and that's
as real as it will ever get
from here.

The trees outside call on me to answer

now the rustle of leaves
a thin tree,
more like a bush
in right corner of
my window,
bobbing heads,
chirp of birds, right on time,
I am up, alone in the world,
blink of FB comments
gchat notes, I am
thinking about coffee,
(without it for 3 days
counting) it'd be an
easy walk down
the street to Ethiopian
cafe but I can hear your
voice in my barely gone
cold *cough* *cough*
your fault/hot outside/
*cough* so I'll wait,
until tomorrow, maybe,
definitely, I won't last much
rumble of airplane
over US property lines
restricted five corner space,
coming noon, stomach rumbles
too, tho I'm not sure
I'm even hungry,
it might be all in my mind.

As a Dog Barks

The Hunt
by Dexter Gordon?

usually don't guess
right but

that's what's playing:

July 4th 2014

8:53 am

my phone turns itself
off during that night,
never the day

day looks like rain, but
it's not raining

I shit, shower

head doesn't hurt any longer.

I should get a beer, I says,
I'm a writer, it would make sense.

I don't. I hear children playing outside,

I left my window cracked, the gray
sky leaks inside, now
everything is gray

this doesn't feel like independence

a strange metallic sound outside,
car, sounds off,

these guys (Filipinos & Mexican
guys) are always out working on
their cars, I don't know enough
to know what they're doing,

I missed out on that part of manhood.

I've held a pen,
typed instead.

Sun peeks through clouds offscreen

it's all starting to look different

it's July 4th, 9:38am

I'm typing poems as a dog barks.

Sick Dreams

I was climbing across
rooftops sky deep
purple outlines in black,
on all fours I moved,
there were no windows
no lights no doors,
I traveled miles in seconds
a giant on the top of the world,
an endless city under my hands
my feet,

until I peered down
below, into the bottomless
gulf beneath me,
and shrinking I fought to
find a way down, a way inside
blank structures that began to split apart
or maybe had always been apart,
I had just been so large,
too large to really see,


I was walking into a
condo on the beach, sky still blank
dark, I saw from sliding door,
great tsunami crashing toward me,
an image like a painting,
and smashing through
the walls the waves struck me
oily, sandy, dark brown liquid
in my mouth,

I began heaving, spitting,
another wave was on its way,
larger than the first, I had no time
to escape,


I was moving along a city wall
at great speed, escaping something,
I bounded off and into an alley,
moving fast, I slid into an open
basement window thinking,
"they'll never find me,"


I was walking in a department store
clutching a small orange cat to my chest
there were people there, buying dolls
the whole store full of dolls, I couldn't make
them out, a girl asked me about the cat,
how long I'd been holding him,
it felt like hours but I couldn't tell,
I couldn't know,

"A long time," I said,
"A long time, I guess."

Rain; Dreaming

each time I sit still
and listen for the
it slows and drifts into
the night on
clouds barely discernible
from the sky,
each time I shut my blinds
the rain changes shape
changes direction,
I close my eyes
to hear sound of
emptied streets and
the void that quiet and
sleep bring,
each time I wait for the rain
deep into sleepless nights
it ignores me,
and I am a small meaningless
each time I am left waiting,
for clouds and storms
to come again.

Dead Eyes

A soft summer rain,
clicking of some insect or
raccoon or squirrel off in
trees, purple-orange sky
haze in the distance, beyond that,
the city, I walk out into scene
swinging trash bag, cutting down
invisible spider-webs,
the dumpster looks at me
with dead eyes like the dead
eyes staring out wet
tree branches, like the dead eyes
leering under cars, like the dead eyes
from the million cold bodies
buried in all the cemeteries of the world,
and I toss the bag into the
gaping black mouth weary of stepping
any closer,
walk out into the street
where I feel somehow I'm safe,
for a moment, before turning
back toward the old brick
apartment building
with its dark windows
and its own dead eyes