Monday, August 29, 2016

About the poem I left in my car

I left a poem in my car,
in the slot at the bottom of the driver's side door,

it was about a closed road and geese landing
in a pond,

there were reeds around the pond
and the road was nothing but smashed rock,
powdered gray earth,

I was stopped at a red light inbetween,
then I was writing as I drove,
pen scratching steering wheel,

it wasn't until I was a mile away
and the car engine cooling down
and the interior heating up in the sun
that I realized I'd left my words behind.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Coffee Run

he dropped two pounds last week.
     the weight came right off for want of eating

there were cars on the street
     and the street was an old street with no parking

he was tired and slightly lightheaded
     maybe from dying or just the not eating thing

most likely it was from dying or kidney failure
     maybe it was liver failure or heart or something

the street was parallel to another street east of it
     then west came the river there were no other streets before it

beyond there were probably some other streets
     they were possibly newer and blacker topped

his street the one he was standing on was gray
     there were no sidewalks just a small concrete border and grass

it was not easy to walk and be dizzy and hungry while avoiding cars
     it was not the busiest street but it was not abandoned either

he made his way past the cars and the cars passed him
     there was a place to be at the end of the street

the place to be was where his street went perpendicular to another street
     at the corner there was the place he meant to be going

he wasn't going to eat there but other people did
     just coffee is what he would say and how much is that he would say

he would say that knowing no matter what he was going to buy that
     formalities were observed on this street and he would pay in cash

next to the place he was going were some places he'd never been
     they didn't interest him so he saw their signs but ignored them

he knew some people who liked those stores better
     there was no convincing them otherwise and he wouldn't have tried

he had never been to those stores
     after he got his coffee he would empty a packet of sugar in

stirring the sugar into the coffee gently he would look at the cream
     he would place his hand on the cream but never use it

drinking the coffee made his head feel better
     he decided he wasn't dying after all

on the way back to his car parked with the other cars on his street
     it was nice to walk along the river's edge

he noticed that really there were only like fours different colors for cars
     if you paid spacial attention you might catch an off color one day

the river however was brown today and yesterday and the day before
     tomorrow it would be brown again and the day after

he made his way past the cars and the cars passed him
     the door handle lifted in his hand the latch unlocked and the door slid open

today he was sure to lose another pound
     that would be nice he thought that would make three pounds

Soon i'll be back to eating he said to the inside windshield
     the key turned in his hand and the car gave a jolt at the start

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

draw the line

I will lie when I am drawing the line
even when I am alone

it doesn't matter

I lie and brush it away and let it fall
and if I am not alone I pick it back up
taking quick glances around me
as I brush it off and return it to its place

not if I am alone tho
if I am alone
I savor watching it down there
beside my feet flat to the floor
face down looking away from me
standing above it in the dark

it doesn't matter
but it's what I choose to do
by myself alone unencumbered
owing nothing of any sort to nobody
watching as a giant from above
at the small discarded things below
while I sit and draw the next line
where maybe I will lie

Monday, August 15, 2016

some vague sense of completion

voices behind me
coming down the trail

I had stripped to my underwear
feet dipped in cold green sky

sun still bearing down hard

my fingers over the edge of the dock

small green fish in god's tear drop

we had made the summit
we had run from the peak

there were five of us

I held my breath a moment
and there was nothing left

there was nothing to think
there was nothing to say

Joe jumped past me
but I didn't wait to hear the splash

I let the water catch

lift me up

Friday, August 12, 2016

listening to voices

there's a phone ringing and a monotone voice going
but no pictures of phones and no body to hang the voice on to
and I asked myself why in my ear do I hear a phone
and why in my head do I hear a voice in monotone
why can't I figure where these sounds are coming from? I asked

I couldn't answer myself, I had no answer
now the phone has gone silent but the voice
keeps going
                    maybe they were two separate sounds
maybe there had been no connection which think about it
makes sense why would a voice be talking while a phone
is ringing if a phone is ringing then a phone is unanswered
and a voice has nothing to talk to

there was only one sound now
                                                  the voice while I
watched my fingers typing wondering if there
were mistakes on the screen because my eyes couldn't
follow the rhythm or the speed of my hands
                                                                       when I looked
up trying not to concentrate on the voice words but hearing
the voice sound I screwed a few words and deleted them and
corrected them in kind I had spell check of course but sometimes
it's nice to just correct as you go often times it does nothing to
the poem I am writing and I go on and sometimes it is everything
and it fucks everything all up

the voice is talking about watermelons and the color of the melons
and I had watermelon this morning with my coffee
                                                                                  I wanted to eat
them with my fingers picking them up and placing them in but instead
I used the fork I had the same fork I used every day to eat my lunch
stir-fry vegetables and rice I couldn't taste any residue on the melon
a good sign since I never clean the fork all that well
                                                                                    I just wipe it
with the most soiled napkin of the bunch I grab three and use them
strategically and there is a whistle in my ear the voice is done gone
wherever the ringing had been a vacuum
                                                                  where all this had been going
is gone and done look I am alone with my ears and my fingers and my eyes
and the memory of sound of the phone separate
from the memory of the monotone voice

Monday, August 8, 2016

hallway song

the fire alarms are exits
                                       the green lights
available          shelter-in-place
coffee machine burn sigils into wooden tables
dig holes in the mud
stairs covered in dust
                                     make faces as hands
and feet
doors are made from the remains of a millions beads
of aspirin
                they cloud the empathic centers of the brain
like sharks in open space caskets made of glass
the fissure in the foot
                                   burns skin and opens blisters
on the toilet seat from bathrooms cannot be found
invisible is the front door
                                         and the only escape
goes beyond what you can see


those red eyes, move steady toward me

night chases the morning          on headlight streams

& bitter miles left to go     the bitter miles between me

where I am meant to be     in traffic hours ago

a dry cough          into empty water bottle neck

soon by the side of the road inked in red          Both doors closed

I'll lose the lead I've built up          the dam will break

those red eyes, move steady, fading away

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Stop and Go

Hang my head until it drags my bones

          I watch the skin peel from skin in my finger tips
I don't feel it go

          --it smells like a dentist's office here--with all the
white light--

          I relax my bowels to the sound of
approaching footsteps