untitled (20180217)

we couldn’t pull the trigger fast enough
there wasn’t enough gunpowder
to push the bullet down the barrel

simply not enough lead in the planet’s core
to melt and pour into shiny slugs

this is not a protest poem

you can’t protest an entire species’
unrelenting stampede toward the edge of a cliff

if the meek do inherit the earth it will be because
they’re wearing bullet-proof vests and gas masks
living like moles in the earth where the lead used to be

the dream of the office chair (20180213)

my chair dreams me
a reflexive twitch of a wooden
post-arboreal consciousness

thought creates gravity creates time

to fall down the well

but the chair sustains me
projects me
a watery hologram
in the nearest fog bank

this chair is a hand
shoved up my back

limbs animating
you know who
to blame

let’s all open up (20180212)

i had to work the wound
to get it to bleed again
no amount of murmuring
would entice it to cease
once it freely flowed

these closed doors
flickering living room lights
the smell of half-eaten dinners
don’t fool me

you’re all bleeding


dVerse Poets
Quadrille #50: murmur

inflation (20180131)

a yellow balloon occupies
each seat
a smile drawn in permanent
black ink across otherwise
smooth undisturbed skin

a prayer meeting of vipers
voices shrill from helium
each conversation
call and response of hisses

emptying heads sink
expelling opinions through holes
too small to let anything in

talk shrink wrinkle
deflate in the chair
like the double tragedy
of an unrolled unused condom

the good thing about
drawing on your smile–
you won’t lose any teeth
when you get punched in the mouth

you will always get punched
in the mouth

two voice choir (20180123)

the night sky makes a sound
a two voice choir singing
a growl of cars on the freeway
the belching of a jet
invisible overhead somewhere
between black
star-isolating expanses

it is the same sound i hear
in my head
one ear roaring
the other ringing
the darkness similar
only not so big
but bigger

everyone else’s dreams are boring (20180110)


in the dream you have
eyes made of full moons
and glossy lips

in daylight
and under fluorescents
your skin wrinkles where
youth has flattened out
on a face already carved
into planes and
where the skin has stretched
from too much
self-imposed forced smiling

you lean forward
–the kiss clumsy–
though your mouth looks wet
i feel every line
every dry crack
in your lips
they compress against my own
the softness gone
like air from a deflated balloon

the dream doesn’t let
me taste you
dream-me thinks
ah, you are getting older


hat tip to C of Optional Poetry, and this poem in particular

at the wheel (20180102)

the heart is
a driver in a hurry
who takes shortcuts
who has mistaken the gps map
for the territory
who fails to signal
when changing lanes
brakes [breaks]
ignores stop signs
posted speed limits
maximum speed limits
road hazards
never knows who goes first
at a four-way stop
guns it through the intersection
on a stale yellow
merges poorly
cuts off
flips off
offramp shoulder surfs
is night blind
is always under the influence
is always running late
is always driving facing the rising sun
is always driving facing the setting sun
always falls asleep at the wheel

the last poem of 2017 (20171231)

the non-existant color pink
for instance

[take it for instant coffee for all i care]

no wavelength in the spectrum of light
it should fit between red and violet
like a surprise baby in a family photo

but nothing fits between them
red and violet refuse to circle back like we do
and do not hang in the sky like
a ocd rainbow sprinkle donut
a waxed and bleached asshole
a my little pony ouroboros

no color for strawberry ice cream
for lips puckering for a kiss
for sticky drooling fondant in a cherry cordial
for the glistening underside of the tongue
for slowly stiffening areola
for wet thigh dripping mysteries

pink is just a space between
the brain filling in gaps
a gap itself
thrumming without other colors
to harmonize with
a good and plenty rattle
in an almost empty box
in a theater abandoned
by an audience who wanders around
at dusk and wonders
what color the sky is