Thursday, October 29, 2015

More Poetry By Simon Perchik

Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review,
The Nation, Poetry, Osiris, The New Yorker, and elsewhere. His most recent collection is Almost Rain, published by River Otter Press (2013).  For more information, including free e-books, his essay titled “Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” please visit his website at www.simonperchik.com.

Simon Perchik



*
                         This bloom still reckless, its heat
breaking into the furious hum
bugs use for melting snow 

–there’s no interest in romance
though every winter now
is warmed, takes hold your hand

by brushing against the dirt
risks its place to lure you, naked
in front the house, her breasts

surrounded and across your tongue
a lingering darkness welcomes them
knows nothing why your fingers smell

from avalanche and salt
and never had that taste for sweets
moving mouth to mouth

snatching things up, louder and louder
certain this frost is frost, named
so soon after its birth and yours.


*
This cliff spreading out
and among the black stones
on all sides another rooftop

half marble, half while the city below
street by street catches fire
the way your still unopened lips

use what air is left though that’s
not how you remember it
when some mourner falls behind

and makes it out alive
already in a straight line
as if your arms are closing in

on what they say not to
and the rock you hold up
as the single-minded cry

coming from deep inside the sun
covers your mouth face down
to cool itself off, then louder.




*
Palms up, you’re used to winter
as the sound not yet these rocks
breaking off between one clearing

and the other –you already know
what’s to come, pull up
the way piece by piece still remembers

the first snow and now the Earth
keeps everything to itself
though what you lift is always cold

starting over, filling each stone
by hand, further and further
almost in two and frail.




*
Hopeless! you add more salt
the way another spoonful
rows you across, the spray

clouding over with shoreline
–this soup has to be heated again
spread out as if night after night

you need a bigger pot
already with its darkness
caked on to these stars coming by

so early –to the same place
and for a second time are trembling
cling without touching your face.

      


*
You reach into that darkness
stars return for, are cooled
and yet you open the mail

slowly so in each envelope
the letter folding over and over
still falls out as mist

covers the ground
almost to a boil –you retrace
the way the blind find shelter

and with just your fingertips
empty the small fire
hidden behind the others

waiting for its shadow
cut off from home
and at the slightest touch.

John Grochalski Returns To ZLR

John Grochalski is a published writer whose poetry and prose have appeared in several online and print publications including:  Red Fez, Rusty Truck, Outsider Writers Collective, Underground Voices, The Lilliput Review, The Main Street Rag, Zygote In My Coffee, The Camel Saloon, and Bartleby Snopes.  I have two books of poetry The Noose Doesn’t Get Any Looser After You Punch (Six Gallery Press) and Glass City (Low Ghost Press), and a novel, The Librarian forthcoming.

eureka moment

slipping
drunkish
we pour out of the metropol
onto ice covered
smallman street
and yes
they are in front of us
steve won’t let it go
he says, all of these months, dude
all of these months
going to clubs
going to bars
trying to meet chicks
and one practically falls in your lap tonight
he says,
dude, what was the problem?
she too good looking for you?
you two have too much in common?
calvin adds,
she was pretty cute, ski
because he thinks he and i have rap names
and she’s only a few paces ahead
i think if she looks back
just once…
but steve stars in again
dude, what club, what bar
are you gonna go to where you’re going to meet
an english lit major
from your own fucking college of all things
he says, next week we’ll be here again
and she won’t
that’s a fact
and you’ll be moaning and complaining, dude
we finally get to the car
wait in the cold blast for steve to stop yelling at me
open doors and get in shivering
i realize i still have half a forty of bud left
in the backseat
half-frozen
it tastes like steinbeck’s
beer milkshake
from here on cannery row
where i didn’t even get her name.


i’m a genius writer

twenty-six years old
alto girl
head to toe in black
black skirt and black nylons
short red hair dancing
under purple smoke lights
of the metropol
hip chick, at least she thinks
beatnik chick
tells me
that i’m too young to be dancing
to 1984 throwback music
but i’m on two 40s of budweiser
some shots
a couple buck-fifty special yuengling bottles
so i’ll dance the dance
because i don’t care
even if she takes the brand new cigarette
out of my mouth
smokes it to toward the last drag
while we stand there
glistened in club sweat
she thinking me too young and she thinking she’s too old
waiting for whatever the night brings
and i can hear
calvin and steve hoot-call throughout the club
their fruitless cattle call
when she finally says,
i love the 80s
like it’s a grand statement
i think to tell her nostalgia is a hole
but she laughs
throws my smoke on the ground
crushes it with black heels
rolls her eyes at me
just another failed male on a saturday night
turns back to find her friends
leaving me
screaming to her shimming back
but i’m a genius writer
inhaling dry ice on the comedown
instead of that camel light.

John Grochalski


simple kiss

cassandra
sits sideways
window cracked
our smokes to their butt end
the evening
into night into morning
she says
we both have to be there early tomorrow
like a harbinger of doom
hurrying me along
to get where we need to get
this forever night of beer and darts
coming to an end
this year crawling to its close
cassandra sighs and laughs
because i’m frozen where i sit
she grabs me
before i know it
mouth on mouth
sweet immortal simple kiss
she let’s go and is out the car
before i can get a word in
watching her
walk to her door
motion light
spotlight
halo
i anticipate eternity
but this angel
she doesn’t
even look back.


big picture

we steal ron p’s ritalin from his desk
munch mini thin diet pills for pep
drink pitchers of beer in the phi on our lunch break
we’re not thinking big picture here
i complain to randy about cassandra
she asks me what’s wrong, i say
you stopped calling me stopped talking to me wrong
i’ve spent more time on the phone with her mother
at work i watch cassandra make faces with brandon
huddle over grad school homework with brandon
tattooed union socialist brandon
come to brandon’s punk show, she says
my red-eyes bulging out of my head
ritalin mini thin beer cocktail
what am i gonna do at a punk show?
but i take calvin to the 31st street pub
ritalin-iron-city-pittsburgh-car-bomb
tattooed brandon on stage screaming into a microphone
a sea of porcelain cassandras fawning over him
on lonely penn avenue
we hear soul music coming out of a club
jacked-sweating-ritalin-beer we go in
the only two white faces in the joint
a sea of ebony anti-cassandras moving to keith sweat
last time like this with ron p.
in a joint on penn avenue east liberty can’t remember the name
only white face then in the joint
smoking weed and buying stolen nike hats
the bartender slams down two cans of budweiser
like drink ‘em fasts boys
we walk around the joint like little ghosts
ace ventura, she says, coming over to me
beautiful black under purple club lights her shirt glows
drags us over to her boyfriend/friend
she says, ace ventura! ace ventura!
nursing beers we play darts with them for an hour
keith sweat turning into guy turning into jodeci into her moving
we stumble out into the street
the punk show ending down the block
a sea of white faces pouring out into the night
cassandrabrandon somewhere in the mix
ritalin hangover we walk back toward the car
calvin saying, ski, i always liked black girls
better than white girls anyway. 


waterlogged

and then
there is portia
portia with her boyfriend
sweet portia whom i’m infatuated with
and you want to know
where i was on tuesday?
face deep in three pints
because i couldn’t be anywhere near you
sit next to you in this class anymore
january to april and i’m worn down of you
because some tortures are too simple
portia with her boyfriend
and your cat got out?
and your dui last summer?
and how you shouldn’t be buying
or drinking alcohol?
so much happens in a week!
portia wants to know why i haven’t
visited her at aussie’s yet
portia with her boyfriend
she says she’s quitting come the twenty-second
portia talks like she’s on speed
and because i want her to keep going
i interject as little as possible
she wants to know
what i think about her maybe staying
in the city this summer
i think the sun and moon and stars about it
but i tell her that’s pretty cool
portia with her boyfriend
at the arts festival regatta fireworks at the point
on the south side shadyside squirrel hill
polish hill lawrenceville bloomfield north side
her big eyes red hair lip ring
in my bars in my clubs
a damned shroud over junejulyaugust
portia wants to know why i still haven’t
come down to the sharper edge for a pint
i laugh i tell her i will really will
once i pick which of one of
these three blessed rivers
i’m gonna go down
and drown my sorrows in

The Poet Rose Knapp

Rose Knapp is a poet, novelist, short story writer, multimedia artist, and music producer. She has an experimental novel forthcoming and various poetry publications in Commonline Journal, Blue Lake Review, Poetry Pacific Magazine, Indiana Voice Journal, Shot Glass Journal, Chicago Literati, and many others.

She currently divides her time between Brooklyn and Minneapolis.


Freedom-Spenserian Word Sonnet
Chatty city
Laughing lights
Witty gossipy
Fuckwit shiny knights


Endless flights
Drag queens
Beautiful *frights*
Beaches pristine


Turquoise seas
Lots of Ciroc
Numb lonely
Sore cocks


Not looking for a place to call home--
Looking for a place to die with freedom



/ ^
All ways
resighcull
it will be a
dark crusade
but the chrome
lybrary is ok to danse
inside. the virtual dubstep
musesick reads on repeat. the
fractal ++ code and endless  print
only a fruity loop studio and apophasis
generator. a tool and nothing more nor less


The poet Rose Knapp

Hot Shit Haiku
*Wooooaaawwwooo
dddaaannngggmmaaa
dddaaassssssuuummm
hhhoootttssshhiitttttt*



First Amandmeant
Speak only to your own ears. Express yourself, but follow all our rules. Rebel, but not really; no radical paradigm shifts or Jacobin rifts. Just make some meaningless politically convenient noise, compose some pretty, marketable country-life sonnets, write some trashy romance novels with some spanking, paint some fluffy flowers, make some more Tom Cruise movies, sculpt some more sexy bodies, all those would be just perfect.
But please stop with the socially unacceptable critique and the Nietzschean antisocial experimentation. We have a way of handling troublemaking deviants; we have a way of handling extreme avant-garde artists. We call them crazy, or we call them criminals; usually both, before we burn them at the stake with an American flagstaff shoved through their unpatriotic bleeding liberal hearts. After all, if voting changed much we’d make it illegal.




Dab lierdd
i c k Ich icks
b i n bin bann
l a d lad laid
n n n nnnn
???! ¿ ¿ ¿

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Poetry By Vincent Basso

Vincent M. Basso is a poet and writer living in Albuquerque, NM. He received his MFA from the University of Southern Maine and is currently a doctoral student in the English literature program at the University of New Mexico. His poetry has appeared in Black Renaissance/Renaissance Noire, Future Earth Magazine, New Guard, Nth Position, and other journals. In addition to his work as a university teacher he has worked in social welfare services for roughly 16 years. 

Poet Vincent Basso



Leviathan 

The sky shot carbon and the dead countless in their number. A wheel many years like this. Drugs were plentiful, but ill advised. The newbies cooked in their foxholes afresh each morning. He hated the smell. He hated the commander too. He woke alone in his trench. It was a strange day. No moans. No pleas for rescue echoing from off the desecrated loam. No gunpowder. No soot. He had lost hope after a bad drunk long ago. He had dosed and forgotten his orders. A chill ran along his spine. Some said the war was over money. Some said ideas. In the end neighbor murdered neighbor and among the ruins of the cities it was not uncommon to find certain quarters still littered with candles and the photographs of the disappeared. He sat in the pike and fidgeted with his rifle. He waited for the day’s bugle and charge. A lone rat scurried along the parapet. A blackbird took to the sky. This is how it ends he thought. He made some coffee. Lit a joint. Wrote a note in his journal. He was the filth stuck in the maw of the Leviathan. It seemed a lifetime had passed since last he saw her face. 



The Furies 

I drink my coffee and say nothing, while the new birds 
and morning light pervade. 

Dead-eyed and grinning—the girl from the beauty parade—
won’t you please? The Furies all fever and lust and chthonic wing. 

White packed inebriation. I’m a sacrifice—say it loud! 
In my garden I am cultivating sunflowers and magpies to eat 

the seed. So often my own undoing. The lone highway cracks 
along its centerline—the angel flashes her tits. 

I know that it is irrational—the way they loom like black totems 
in my mind. Alecto, who twice gutted herself 

with a kitchen knife, fired from a job that barely covered the rent 
anyway. Megaera, her kid in foster care, regularly taking 

the handouts of potted meat and infested wheat from the pantries 
of shelters. While poor Tisiphone, whittled down 

by the ecstasy, dreams nightly of a child sprouting horn 
and hoof inside her. 

Dear reader, I tell you that these three sisters share a small cabin 
tucked secretly, as in a fable, along a seldom-traveled mountain road. 

That ritually they descend upon the town disguised 
as panhandlers and pace the gas station parking lot locked 

in argument as if choked by flies because the cash is dead. 
In the family room washing dishes, 

in the bedroom beneath the sands—the wordless blue constriction 
in their throats as one by one women cut the wheel 

too sharp against the curve, leap from bridges, replace need 
with scripture, scripture with hysterics 

rolled out in the punch lines of housing evictions. The razor’s rail 
of silver light! The shitty vodka and pills! 

In another life I am a painter. In another life red is where the angel 
splits herself in three, 

and the girl floats angelic above the gawkers—mascara all asunder. 
Desire, and the impossibility of the object, inescapable and ubiquitous 

as an ant. The rote automata of ant. The angel flashes her tits. 
Obsessed with the Grecian Urn, the Archaic Torso of Apollo, I choose 

the blue of unmolested sky. Green for the season of cattle 
near bursting. The Furies murmur from the sage leaves, 

the quartz gravel—writhe from the chrysalis, the spider’s eggs. 
My dog has worms. Names. The dead girl. 

The girl claiming herself the raped stigmata blind and thinking to fly 
into gridlocked Main Street—hive and glassed eye. It’s a leveling. 

It’s not her tits. The mountain in the distance and the small house near—
I can see them in the doorway where the light is bad. 

All that I have hoped for is all that I have asked. The angel wiggles 
her hips. “Burn the pink dresses and dolls!” She screams. 

“Tear the petals out like hair! Show us that the house of worship 
was more than sex! Come, kiss us! Come kiss our mouths!” 




The Burden of Sin in the Early 21st Century 

When I was a boy my father allowed me the companionship of three pet mice. Each was given a name corresponding to its demeanor. Andromeda, ever cunning. Indefatigable Perseus. Pegasus—brave and swift. I often set each in small plastic balls within which they would careen about the house to my amusement and my mother’s dismay. These affairs usually concluded with my setting the mice at odds with one another in a race, which I called my Olympiad. Precocious as I was, my father humored my interests in Grecian myth and the fetishization of species by one week taking it upon himself to assist me in the construction of a maze. We fashioned the walls such that they remained just beyond the possibility of scaling and certain dead ends were ornamented with mirrors to trick the mice into thinking themselves doubled. Lastly, a circular oasis wherein I would place water and a square of cheese was erected in the center of the table. I frequently enjoyed the sport of timing which of the three—the white, the black, or the gray—could reach this goal the quickest. 

It is the following for which I cannot account. One day prior to running my usual experiment I found that the two mice I loved most, the white and the black, were inexplicably darting about the walls as if possessed. It was with no little panic that I found the little gray, my Pegasus, impaled with a kitchen knife—its vitals spread in a pool beside the cheese and upturned bowl. I pondered who could have been responsible, but it soon became apparent that I had been the perpetrator of this most horrendous deed. I, of course, took measures to conceal the evidence of my guilt and reported to my parents that the gray had simply run off while I was attempting to transfer him from the maze to the ball. I don’t remember when I killed the others, but I found them curled near to each other one morning and mutilated in a not dissimilar way. I can still feel the iron in my teeth. I had a serious girlfriend, then a wife. We kept a small dog. We named it something ugly. Tinkerbelle, I think. It was never a game. I pinned him to the ground and it excited me. For I am the living. But these are not the crimes to which I stand accused. 




Mouse 

I clip the iris and the iris is gone. 
I make promises that I cannot keep and fall—Daedalus 

made claims. There are many ways to punish 
the mouse. It takes the cheese on the right 

and gets an electric shock. It takes the cheese on the left 
and is not destroyed. The mouse thinks, Hooray! 

I am a good worker. I am a smart mouse. 
And, so, the Lord of Sorrow binds it by the neck 

and casts it into day and follows. I plucked the mouse 
from its nest of marled cotton 

between the old boxes on the shelf in the garage. 
Its pulse quickened in the leathered lock 

of my hands. Bless me Winter Moon. Bless my child 
asleep in his bed. 

I dropped it into a foot of snow and that night 
I dreamed that my son was taken. 




The Corpse Speaks Fertility in the Season of Drought 

I want to know if the sepia dust that I am passing through and sweeping with my cupped hand has anything to do with the headlights and diesel throttle that exists, now, outside of the dark country road and ancient granulated earth suspended in the air as if dancing, and, so, fully alive? When the photographer came he said something clever before he understood that he too was susceptible to the jagged night and its scent, which caused him to vomit at the feet of the sheriff, who refused to speak, or was unable to, as he slipped into what could be described as a mouth in which his was the pale human glow abandoned to a primordial black where there existed neither mercy nor deliverance from his many failures. Something in the grainy photograph of the newspaper, as if backlit by amber. Her leg oiled and levitating from the pitch. The one bronze river—its confluence and fount—from which the corpse speaks fertility in the season of drought. 




Walking with Jesus in America

I walk the tree-lined streets memoria burdened by my trail of complaint—
it’s a condition. I get up everyday and I go to work. 

I try to remind myself that the bills mean nothing. That love will not fail. 
Failure waits for me in the living room, the park—somewhere 

in the unremarkable space above my right shoulder where the good angel swoons, 
“Don’t look to your left.” Under the mountain I go—

late to work, late to rest. “Buddy, you’re going to be late for your own funeral.” 
That’s a joke. That’s the trace of nausea. It’s in the ways we line up 

to be counted among the fascists. In the ways we are fascists. Jesus opens 
his palms like a thunderbird—I have never claimed to love him. 

I can’t tell if it’s a dream of the future or a dream of the past—figurations 
of the Christ Flower. Jesus sifts the desert in his hands. 

He has a kind laugh. “This is the body,” he says, and, “We will overcome.” 
Angel at my ear. Devil at my ear. “The trouble’s all in your head,” says Christ. 

I carry a deep and abiding love for children and dogs. I kiss my boys asleep 
in their beds, my wife I promise—before I slip into the still dark 

where the moon hangs thin as a wafer and from the mountain I think I hear—Mercy, 
talk me down from the edge of the many dialogues intertwined 

in the simple pattern of human warmth between us. Oh, my lily dove, 
my scarlet canary, how you circle round my head! You, the one fat pigeon, 

and you, the other scrawnier one, who keep watch exchanging jokes 
in the shade of a date palm at the Gates of Addiction. 

I try to put away the old anger, but it does no good. Jesus takes a pebble in his hand. 
“I am in the decansos,” he says. “In the green limbs and meadowlarks 

that ignore you.” I stop making promises and toss my habit to the highways of America. 
Drive to the end of it—to the sea—where our two footpaths merge into one. 

“Do not be so strange,” he tells me. “I am the love that you are. 
Besides, it was you who carried me.”

Friday, October 23, 2015

Poetry and Stories By Lucio H. Cooper

Lucio H. Cooper’s work has been featured in the Sand Canyon Review, the Burning Shore Review, Gap Toothed Madness, San Diego Poetry Annual and Ashley V. Blalock’s text book, Studies in Art. He currently lives in San Diego with five little neurotic dogs that are slowly destroying his home.


10 Stories


1st floor,     Donald whittles small figures of gnomes in his bedroom, squinting in the fading light, the power company shut the juice off from the wires, the cold air starts to slowly invade from the west, the mix of salt air, and poison, cars stretched out like a sick film, oozing and invading the walls, creaking and bucking, an unwelcome scented-intruder. Donald’s crooked back bends over the small shapes. He lives alone and off of social security checks, since she died from a car crash. It was his birthday, she was going to surprise him with a new set of chisels, expensive handmade ones from Germany. She had saved up for them for a year. The police found them along with a bloody torn card that said-
I love you, I never want to free myself from your heart. I can’t sleep at night when I think about how much I love you.                                                             
Love,
                          Your sweet little mouse.
Some nights Donald would whittle all night, tiny shavings on the ground, perched like a disheveled gargoyle on a stool under candlelight, until the red lines of sun awoke from the heavy inflamed cloak of night. 

6th floor,    young David begins to shower his jasmine plants, he unplugs the top off of another cheap wine, he screams at the interior foam of his brain to shut up, the salt wind corrodes his mouth coated in saw dust, his eyes close, he gives his guts the sweet juice and lets his toenails linger in the slanted-weak-sun, red-sore torso, muffled moans leak through the ceiling, his teeth grit as imagines licking the sweat from the ceiling, he spits off the balcony and yells for the traffic to-
“STOP CREEPING YOUR POISIN CLOUD 
INTO MY DAMN LUNGS, I’M TIRED OF ALL THE FUCKING NOISE!!!”

7th floor,     Sandy vigorously towels off the fresh Jasmine perfume from her body, keeping all the flowing beads of twenty year old skin locked deep inside,     for now-
rubbing her hair in a wet towel, she misses phone calls so she can lay naked on the couch, pressurized juices sealed tight for eight hours, quiver and slowly leak out under a Cinemax glow, breathing hard into the black folds of leather, blond hair spreading underneath an arched neck as sweat drops to the floor, eyes shut tight, red sparks flowing faster and faster as she imagines thousands of eyes-----watching-     their heavy breathing keeping pace with the machines and tubes gasping in the night.

9th floor,       Mrs. Merrwood, her Siamese cat on the edge of the balcony. They both wait for the halted, boiled fumes of the city traffic to quietly subside under their feet, she says her husband died ten years ago, as his heart gave way to Jack and cigarettes, she said over and over again how much he loved her meatloaf, he always kissed her goodnight even if they fought,
She takes out his old suit and irons it every night, warm sweat on the collar… tucking and un-tucking his bed, two half full glasses- one on each side of the bed, whispering his name when all there was --------dead silence          trapped in the weak tomb, of five hundred square feet---
10th floor,
Is empty now, nothing but dust weakened by the lonely sounds below of Mrs. Merrwood,
quickly waiting for death to steal her from the same dream she has every night, 10 stories, her husband, the invading sounds of the building that made it feel alive, razors of starlight across all those lonely eyes, convalescent, dragging the wet tubes of the ICU, down long corridors, the nurse pulls the cords around her bed and steps on tiny wood particles, fragrant plants now wilted in the corner-
saturated cold oxygen fills her lungs. 
Her chart reads
S. Merrwood-
The nurse closes the door and finishes her rounds. Whistling and probing the locks, suffocating death rushing into her face and through her-

Donald and David close their eyes in the enveloping blackness….



Dad’s Urn 


Can’t visit an urn and talk to ashes 
buried under a pile of hoarded shit 
your statue suffocates in the frigid corner 
where spiders weave 
steel wool and dust settles in the cracks, 
my crazy aunt 
WHOM stole your ashes and will not 
give you a final resting place, 
WHOM always talks about 
MONEY 
and that’s it, that absurd bitch,
living like it’s the 1930’s, 
while millions swell in the bank 
in their own SICK FOAM. 

You know she is so damn cheap 
she reuses wrapping paper at Christmas, 
carefully snipping the scotch tape 
like it’s fucking wire connected to a bomb, 

rather than turn on the heater,
day or night, she scavenges the neighbor’s
trash cans for paper to burn and warm clothes to wear,
a vulture shedding misery
like asbestos telephone mute and rotted 
                                          on holidays….

She’s sick and needs to be committed
she even showers with buckets 
around her to save the water 
  as black mold  grows and breathes like Lungs 
 on the Yellow Rings of the Tub. 

Meanwhile dad, your arteries formed hard, 
black ice, and she did nothing
when you asked her for help all those years, 
your warm body growing cold 
on Mammoth Mountain. 
My eyes as hard as 
Petrified-stoic-glass 
then Shattered and Wet, 
when I pulled the plug on you that night in Reno…



Candles and spilled wine


I felt the sun wrapping around my neck, pressing its boiled thorns into my frail neck, I breathed heavily and shifted the weight of my pack, I kept walking for thirty minutes and kept each one of their faces fixed firmly in the back of my mind, now in front of me was a small creek, its skin constantly polishing hundreds of small rocks, a large holly bush gave the creek some shade, I noticed a gigantic black fish carrying a rusted sack of tiny brown tubes on its back swimming in slow circles, the yellow light separating slowly under its belly like stars reflected on the tip of a hospital scalpel, 
“I yelled at the fish, NICE FUCKING DAY HUH!” 

               “nice of you to shine like the stars on frigid hospital glass, 
you move like I.C.U. machines, breathing ice into the tubes of that filthy lonely water!”
“I SAY, NICE FUCKING DAY HUH!” 

He said nothing but swam away leaving a brown cloud in the water, I closed my eyes tight and let the blood red sun slam into my eyelids, I opened them and the fish was gone, 
leaving only black and white negatives in its path
Now if you must have me here, 
I say, I say, 
are their negatives of me 
in this vortex nightmare? LOOK CLOSELY-

Blatantly beating myself into submission, I reached into the sack and took out the pictures, one Polaroid of my dead father, one of my old deaf dog, one of Diana, one of the old house still drying from a fresh coat of paint, I looked at those photos hard, looked at them sideways and flung them at the water with a quick snap of the wrist, and when an hour later, when the polarized fumes of the sun erased me, I left those images to boil in their own depressing acid,
Now I packed up my things and headed quickly east where I knew I would feel the intense punishing power of the sun at its cruel zenith, black birds shattered the quiet like a paper bag exploding -   one hundred black heroin needles collapsing in the breathing-hard-sun
I left fast moving dirt behind me and I made sure to stop and scream every ten minutes, to punch the paper trees slowly dying in my path, I walked faster, faster, 
my heart couldn’t keep up, my words exploded at full volume, 

“My name is David! I carry all their pain like razors in my mouth! I digest all their sad loneliness! All their failed goddamn dreams!”
I suddenly stopped and picked up a rock and flung it at the trees, it sliced a small tree in half, pouring its acid leaves and formaldehyde sap 
into the wind, 
I say, I shriek-
“My name is David!”
And I didn’t hold his hand when he died, I robbed the last juice from his breath, I was too busy being hunched over in a low light shit hole, just another bar stool scarecrow disappearing rapidly like a putrid cloud of Alka-Seltzer in a cracked glass.

Her name was Diana- 

we fucked when I was just fresh larva under her nails, and that house, 
that damn house I lit in wax 
burned into the earth and became a flattened tree with barnacles, 
the neighbors helped me search the ashes and found nothing 
but a half melted hair clip, 
I stood still- letting the wind pour into my face, letting the dust break away and reappear, now again I moved fast, shoving the bushes to one side, running deep into the blackening bushes until blood dripped from the tips of my toenails, I reached a parched hillside and sat down, and lay there twitching and letting their voices fester 
                                                                              Until,             
                                  
                                  the breath of night
                                  dragged me off to sleep
                                  under the shredded veins 
                                  of an old 
                                  camphor tree,
                                  
                                  swinging in the gallows



Power Line 


In this cloudless night 
where starlight is cloaked behind 
a thick film of rotting smog, 
a solitary seagull lands on top 
of a power line…. 

On its own, 
nature is a disgusting site, 
because it is so scarce in the 
filthy loneliness that WE collect 
in the city, 
in the overturned shopping carts, 
in the cigarette butts 
scattered like broken teeth, 
in the alleys 
where homeless sleep 
with roaches
in their hair…. 

I am that lone seagull, 
watching all the madness 
unfold all around me- 

mute and petrified I fly away 



Just another Damn day


In the drifting curtains the flies have sex and leave greasy dots on the windows
The dogs are outside sunning themselves on woodchips heads resting on small pieces of shit
The birds are languid and limp enough to drop dead from the trees, bellies full of weed killer

Ninety and alone
The neighbor old Ms. V is probably lying face down in the weeds over there, fallen over, crumpled bones shattered and spread over dry earth, the creaky rusted play set moaning in the soft wind, moaning to cover up her tiny voice praying to god with a mouthful of dirt…
A man in a wheel chair rolls by and lets his dog shit on my lawn
Mr. Trash truck side swipes and knocks over my cans. The mailman tosses my mail in the bushes and peels out in the driveway, a girl with big tits and two Pit Bulls walks by pulling on leashes large enough
to hog tie a fridge

The earth is brittle and I need to attach IV’s to all the trees and bushes,
Gophers are spreading cancer assholes full of dirt-
            pushed up poison pellets from all the holes
look like thousands of green cigarette butts 
tweaker Pac Man in the vomit and weeds,

so I went to the pet store and bought
an enormous bag of snakes
                          To Kill Em All
Medusa’s hair electrocuted in the sun light
slithered up the trunks of skeletal trees, 
and flooded the holes with radiation,

a
fat beer can 
swollen in my hand,
I squirt my chest with the hose 
and collapse 
under the hot shade-

shrapnel-heat 
        explodes
            in toxic clouds 
                                      of
                                      burning dirt
                                      in the dry San Diego wind…