seraph or adversary.
a fallen angel
is preferable to none -
doubtless even devils love.
starving artist [a manifesto of sorts]i'd rather be a starving artist
than a swollen automation
following the herd
to the slaughterhouse
i'll tend my own fences
no matter how derelict,
as the bourgeois graze in
pastures of discontent;
whitewashing my passions
as they stagnate behind
palisades made of
their own laments.
an empty stomach
of poesies are
far more gratifying than
the stale bread of apathy.
banqueting avidly on
my own insatiable appetite
is the most fulfilling feast of all.
I Plucked A Feather From A Sleeping Angel's WingI plucked a feather from a sleeping angel's wing
So that I could fly.
I waved my arms from the edge of the highest hill,
But didn't ascend to the sky.
So carefully I plucked another breathlessly,
And with one in each hand tightly bound
I strove in vain but the results were the same:
My feet stayed on the ground.
So I plucked the rest in deepening exasperation
(Leaving that poor angel completely bare),
And flailed my arms madly in silent desperation;
Feathers scattered everywhere.
I sat down and cried looking to the sky,
Wondering why I couldn't fly on the wings of a feather,
Then the angel awoke and behind me he spoke
"They weren't bound together."
Step right up.
You are entering the land of Heaven and discontent.
A federation of screaming angels and dysfunctional divinity,
where impotent kings wander below
a supernova sun; meandering nigh
the despondent night,
blindly searching for enlightenment in disarray.
It's called desperation in certain circles,
faith in others.
Each interpretation the same.
I call it nihilism, baby.
The cancel of all.
A front row seat to the resurrection
of annihilation, a massacre of animation.
Complication of bifurcation.
Partitions in the parameters.
Gothic rainbows and razorblades.
We want to live forever but we're living to die.
I don't know why.
We swap the womb for a tomb each passing second.
The causation of nothing.
Contempt in congeniality,
strangers among friends.
Enemies making amends.
I love you.
I love you but I want to kill you.
I want to kill you because I love you
because love's just another word
for idolatry, and that'
MagicMagic is more than mystics or metaphysics or spells
Cast in the night of shade.
True magic is more divinity than any angel in Heaven.
Magic means many things, it wears many guises.
The things that matter, the rise from quagmire to saint,
Or simply put,
Orgasms of the mind.
I've known magic in many ways, and I've known it well.
Magic is the first cool morning - September dream.
The air smells of smoke and mountain rain
And the world is rinsed of summer's abattoir.
Sweat is brushed away softy by the northern wind
Rushed from the tundras of Canada, a wish from July.
Magic is the sun rising at dawn
From the early morning mist.
The dew clings to your foot, a persistent lover,
And birds of every spectrum, ambassadors of light, they
Sing the songs they've been singing since they were dinosaurs.
Magic is a mid-summer rain
Cleansing lethargically objects made of man or God the same.
The streets become looking glass rainbows at night
As the neon and the streetlamps shine
Off paved mi
things lost along the wayi've been walking the macadam thoroughfare
all my life
because that's the way they told me
to get to the american dream.
look! they said,
don't you see it? just beyond the vista
over the rise.it's there, i know it!
nothing. i don't see nothing
but the glaring sun burning my eyes.
it's there i tell you it's there.
lord media swore it so.
i see it, i tell you i see it-
a penumbra in a distant land.
so reluctantly i put my boots on,
slung my haversack over a reluctant shoulder
filled with only a half dozen essentials,
and walked blindly into the sun.
god knows i wished they'd told me
how quickly the road went south
and crumbled straight on.
threadbare boots make for an uncomfortable walk
and my satchel dug deep into my tired shoulder.
so i sat to take inventory at the first byway i came to
to lighten my heavy load.
the first to go was confidence
simply because it was the most fragile.
i left it lying just off the bend
like a broken peafowl
and ambled slowly on.
at a service road i ditched
The Kingdom of MelancholyEverything's holly jolly
in the kingdom of melancholy.
Well placed smiles hide everything
hiding in the spaces in between.
It's sweet suicide and delicious death.
It's the last breath.
The rattle, the part that matters at the end,
while the world keeps turning
in jocund revolution
around the sun.
Sleeping pill lullabies
shut my eyes
in balmy shades of azure.
in Diazepam dreams.
The morning coffee is
bitter but necessary
to ascend the quagmire.
Serotonin on the side, please.
The morning sun shines through
the kitchen window
while the larks sing a happy song.
This is a happy place.
This is a happy place.
en route to perdition and
I think I
the mourning doveindifferent and far away glances
left to their own romances,
stayed in the stream of the heart's solitary river.
of no consequence in the lonesome shiver
felt on the frozen night-tide,
desolate and numb inside.
the dead of night goes by the bye
(the dawn breaks with stars in the sky),
and when the mourning dove looked up in surprise
i saw the moon burning in his ebon eyes.
every chance i didn't take IIYou tell him about your cancer on a Sunday,
in the shower of all places, in between brunch plans
and speculations about whether or not the weather
will ever get any colder - hasn't it been the strangest November?
Just the strangest.
You casually mention that somewhere
deep in the secret space between your hips
your own cells are proliferating uncontrollably,
whispering treason and passing down forgeries,
teaching each other the steps of mitosis with alarming intent.
You don't miss a beat as you drop survival percentages
mixed in with tomorrow's rain forecast
and predictions about the game later that afternoon -
easy as breathing, even as counterfeit armies
shred through the soft tissue just below
his favorite place on your spine.
And as you stand there
calmly making conversation
and sharing the last of the soap,
he watches the water
run quiet rivers
through your hair.
cross our paths
for their effects
every poem begins with sometimes
every dream begins with maybe
SolaceShe never slept well in the dark,
not without the children of the sun and moon
to guide her weary lids home.
Guided by the aftermath, she was always two steps behind.
What did the world look like to the girl who had been through it all?
Braved the heaviest of storms,
yet skipping over cracks in the pavement.
They said her eyes were the wisps of clouds before the storm.
To him they were reflections of pages overlooked.
She said it was like she lived the life of someone she had never met.
Laid out to dry, yesterdays news.
He knew her as the girl who was built to never collapse.
He wished he was too.
He loved her more than words could say, and yet her pain was such,
that at times, he feared she wouldn’t make it.
But on nights like these, even when it threatened to consume her,
he became convinced that somehow she would.
The Son, the Father, and Whatever is HolyDo you ever stop to think about those
Old, old stories bound in myriad cantos?
The kind that are all in iambs and Latin
Or Italian – the language of a world in the grip
Of a renaissance that is seeping drip by drip
Into a darkened age, like so much lantern oil.
I do, but for purely selfish reasons –
I think of them as balm for lesions
That keep popping up in my mind.
Lesions, mind you, that are not literal –
They are but the inlets in the littoral
Region of my morbid thoughts.
When the inlets get flooded, I build leather
Boats to keep myself afloat. Whether
I construct them well is up to interpretation.
I cling to the old stories in cadent verse –
When I am particularly low I rehearse
Them aloud – as my mode of survival.
He never understood that, though –
He never really could, and no
Matter how I tried, it was no use.
He didn’t see that for me finishing
The rhyme kept me from diminishing
Into slow-burning insanity.
It hurts me more than him, t
love people"We call everything a river here."
there's a love parade
beautiful blue and white houses
spill children into the street
like beads of happy colored glass--
music all over.
the trees are spring,
fall, and summer,
green yellow maples
all love people
two moons to a face
I think of a quiet
pebbled stream in this moonlight
and a younger woman,
like a single brush of ink,
as the pebbled stream dips,
into winter, or untimed wild.
The Coffee GodThe Coffee God behind the counter shuffles foot to foot, a dance of steam and espresso. Black painted fingernails, inch gauged ears and a gray striped sweatshirt, hood crooked on his back. There's a cigarette tucked behind one ear; it bobs and twitches with each step.
“Non-fat caramel latte,” he calls, just as he always does, part of a spell, part of a mantra, toneless (just a tuck at the end). I reach. He looks up.
The espresso maker hisses.
There's something like a grin, something like a spark, something like a shared secret linked eye to eye. When he passes over the drink (rough cardboard sleeve hot to the touch), he lingers. Our fingers brush, a shiver, a jolt, a ten-watt shock.
The Coffee God tilts his chin, shouts, “Hey, mind if I take my break now?”
and ducks around the counter without waiting for a reply.
He slips his cigarette between his lips without taking his eyes from mine. I follow him out the door.
You Were Not An Aquarium BoySea-glass became your bones,
brine your blood, and seashells
melded into your skin.
You were not quite an ocean
when you said "This is your sign to love me."
My body was like a building;
tall, cold, almost unbreakable.
I was metallic and sharp,
towering over your waters.
I remember taking your hand in mine,
conch and coral shells scrubbing
my skyscraper wrists, and laughing
about how one day you would
submerge every last bit of me.
Your lips, riddled with argonauts,
found my cheek and I cringed
at the coarseness.
You asked if they bothered me
and I finally told you "I
think I love you."
may as well buy another packcollapse, and breathe into the carpet:
sunday mornings are not
for falling apart, but damn
the amphorics, this
is not an atmosphere.
you fell in love like you always
wish you didn't, made all their
smiles replaceable, interchangeable,
fell asleep with shadows and kept
drinking, just letting yourself sleep
with blue pills
and tried not to scream.
(keep this image in your head:
fire and nectarines, a sudden jerk
of realization, inspiration
breaking your neck and leaving you forever
breaking bones is not so different
from breaking hearts - it's all about
the leverage, the angle, the mode
(and at least it wasn't personal;
it can color in your own guilt
for starting lines and never ending
Southern modernizationBlack comedy market economy, banana peel political humour, cards with the cartels, the solution free room service and credit the union. Bolivar twist, ding dong dollar under control, valley of the coin desert with no value. Gangsta paradise, the victims are the people. Big mac and cold conflict interference a part of it all. In little Mexico you’d need a high horse to jump the great border wall that boasts its peak.
Viracocha melts waters unlike those it rose from, making waves of out of metal oceans to overtake the current south, re-steel, re-take, tech-mechs the entire south into neo-Machu Picchu, cyberpunk music moulding, reshaping old society into an new age, iron dynasty, fresh coat for an old, ancient look. The coattails of Quetzalcoatl if he were a modern man pull together the merge of future and long passed past..techno temples and the like.
Charred remains of a modern society The little girl was dancing on the street, among the entrails of a once bustling suburb now strewn chaotically across the scorching asphalt. Her blithesome essence shone through her skin, in the whimsical way she twirled and threw her arms in the air, brushing her wayward curls aside. She crafted a dust storm and trapped the sunlight in her eyes, oblivious to the rubble sinking into her toes and the loaded gun in her brothers hand.
She fell, asphyxiated by her own storm as the bullet carved its way into her flesh. And as the last gleam of light left her eyes, poppies blossomed from the cracked pavement, their crowns swaying in the chemical laden wind the way the girl never would again.
Glass MemoriesDearly Beloved,
Hey, love, it’s me again. It’s winter now – the icy wind throws itself at these stained cinderblock walls but to no avail; a wall works both ways.
A year has passed since I last spoke with you – a year already! No, I’m sure it was yesterday – a Monday.
I never did like Mondays.
I remember where we met. In the subway. You were the last to board a crowded train, I stood up as the wheels began to creak, glancing at you as I did so and nodding ever so slightly towards the empty seat. You laughed and called me a gentlemen, tucking those few strands of honey-colored hair behind your ear. Your nails were painted blue. Light blue. Like the sky.
The mass of people gradually thinned out as we neared the end of the route, until you and I were the only ones left in that car. We sat awkwardly next to each other – you twirling your hair and I fiddling with the buttons on my shirt cuff. I don’t know why I didn’t get up and move.
Where Seagulls Dare “There’s no escape, you know.”
Thomas put his head on one side, slapping the water out of his ear. “Sorry?”
“There’s no escape...from the island.” The heavily bearded man gave him a stare. “The same rocks that sank your vessel have defeated my every attempt at floating a raft.”
“Oh.” Thomas wasn’t sure exactly what one was supposed to say in this situation. “I’m sorry to hear that.”
“There’s food enough to get by here, if you don’t mind bitter roots, insects, sour berries. That’s almost the cruellest thing.” Beneath his stitched-leaf hat, his eyes gazed out to sea. “Compared with the open ocean, this place offers a fair chance of survival. But can it really be called living? Trapped here...on the island?”
Seeking Your StarMarch 20, 2014
Some stars burn so brightly, they burst before they see the cosmos unfold. You shared the warmth of your glow with as many as you could before you rose too high for the sky to handle and scattered sacred stardust across it. Your legacy is seen in constellations.
A few days later
Mom called me to the window today to show me a lone star in a cloudless sky. She said she thought of you.
Mother's Day, 2014
Nana told me at lunch today that she heard footsteps in the room where she keeps your urn. She went upstairs to greet Papa several times, thinking the footsteps were his, but found him sleeping. Our waitress gave each woman at our booth a carnation. Outside, sunlight adorned our skin and held us.
I could have sworn I felt you holding us, too.
June 21, 2014
I took a plane out of Chicago to get back home. The sun set mid-flight, tie-dying the sky in orange and red. As we rose over the clouds, my jetlagged eyes rested upon a lone star pinned against
to the boy who doesn't plan on leavinghow much of me can you swallow, love
before you finally purge?
I am a cartographer of bad
experiences; I can locate
precisely where I see our divergence
extraordinaire and I can tell you
before I have even met you
that the skin on my hands is too
dry for the softness you plan
on caressing me with.
let me tell you how this ends;
I will show you all the people
I have destroyed - flooded
to the best of my ignorance,
driven wild with jealousy,
had whipped with lust and left
smoking pot after four
promises stating otherwise.
let me tell you how this ends;
after showing you the blessed
catastrophe it is to be human,
you will destroy me. you may not mean much
but god, my heart
will make sure
I never miss people who leave.
I miss the ones I walk away from
with guilt tainting my forlorn
how much of me will you swallow
before you finally purge, love?
a girl once called me her home
until she saw just how much
bigger I am on the inside
and it took her
a day and some minutes
Blood and InkA trail of crimson drips onto a parchment so white,
intermingling with black ink on a cold autumns night.
So sweet a melancholy song, playing for all to see,
of the poor, broken, tormented soul that is me.
An artist of no consequence, my heart on my sleeve,
living with a love and a passion so few can conceive.
But with passion comes limitless sufferings and pain,
creating another line on the paper, another blood stain.
For as many scars as I have dreams I will forever live,
inspiration and courage to others is what I hope to give.
That every experience of this world has it's own worth,
to have love and sorrow before we become one with the earth.
A desire for life, a desire for death, such a bitter endless game,
but a desire for immortality burns brighter then the brightest flame.
Wishing for a part of me to not be confined to this mortal coil,
a moment etched in time, long after I am entombed in soil.
Pouring out my deepest passions and angst pent up inside,
perhaps I will live on in b
Graffiti Dreams in Black and White The strokes are dreamt permanent,
the only lasting demarcations of claiming existence,
and the collective artists who painted them majored in Biology,
or Accounting, or English and Professional Writing, or dropped out
as so many do when they wake up.
The poet paints them into existence with his words:
“ideas are illusions, and all words are untrue.”
And we nod our heads and sip our coffees, indeed,
put a price to labors and words and even to thoughts
because we no longer want freedom if it costs us the freedom
of saving face and keeping pace with the ebb and flow
FloodgatesWe’re lined up as we enter Year Seven.
Rulers are pulled out, skirts inspected. Three inches above the knee, no more.
Our skirts are millimeters too short. We hope to pass. If we pass, we’re allowed into the house. Those who don’t are sent home so their mothers can mend what’s broken.
They scour for torn hems, loose stitches, and find none. But Marissa filled out over the summer, and the back of her skirt rises up her thigh nearly an inch above an appropriate level. We share a knowing glance as she flows out of our line, thrust back into the office where someone will call her mother to gather her. Our mothers taught us to lean back when the ruler passed, to let the hem dip down to the creases of our knees. No one would know. When we pass, we share a silent victory.
When they can’t hear us, we whisper about Marissa’s chest, how red splotches cover her nose and cheekbones. We think she won’t come back, girls like her never do, and seventh years a