Monday, May 29, 2017

9581. IF I HESITATE

IF I HESITATE
If I hesitate a moment it's
just to catch my breath and
then move on. I hear there's
a wartime coming. One more
cup of coffee 'fore I go? Walk
me out in the morning dew, my
honey. All that stuff. I can't
shake nothing anymore.

9580. THE LIST WILL FAIL BUT THE SEQUENCE WILL HOLD

THE LIST WILL FAIL BUT THE
SEQUENCE WILL HOLD
And it's always like that  -  things retain
form long after the function is gone. The
old locomotive in the weeds can tell you
stories. We have found lost dances of
the 30's in our dreaming.

9579. HEY!

HEY!
It's not that you're right or wrong; it's just
that you're in the wrong place and time .
You can't find the lost perspective if you're
head's in the current zone.  Just as I can't
understand your words, you can't read my
writing. Cunieform and ad-speak do not
mix. I eat Akkadian for breakfast.
-
There are snaps and kernals and seeds
that blossom what you've never seen : the
past always lives on, of only to negate the
pale present. New and different colors
grow on limbs from my tree of life.

9578. AND NOW THAT I'VE GOT A BUNDLE

AND NOW THAT I'VE 
GOT A BUNDLE
I'm as rich as I ever thought I'd be. 
More, actually. Sitting around this
campfire gulch just thinking of where 
I've been : A dumb, poor kid from
nowhere, having to grow up, adolescent,
among the rich and the powerful. Those
with all the connections and manners. The
dining in Spring Lake and Rhode Island.
The cars, with their fine sisters inside, as
beautiful as a boxer's fist forever clenched.
I wasn't faking, because I couldn't fake
it, just had to learn real fast. Monogrammed
cloth napkins while sitting down to dine
at a long refectory table. Discipline.
Monkey-games. Money. I've got
one million put aside, but that's
just it. For the rest of my days.
And not just me, mid you.
-
People think I'm full of shit. Maybe they're
right, and I wouldn't know. All I can do is attest 
to myself. Really though, you can't assent to 
a fabrication. Because you just wind up
forgetting which parts you made up.
'The truth will out,' as the saying goes,
goes so that's all I ever tell. 

9577. KEEP YOUR POWDER IN RESERVE

KEEP YOU POWDER 
IN RESERVE
So silence is the word we want : I've studied
psychological intentions and realize only now
what the man wanted was not what he got.
It's in how we grow  -  a personal make-up.
Being. Glory. Laid low.
-
Here, once back a few years, I'll make
recollection of 15 degrees, early morning
dead as cold, cold as dead. The girl, Ophelia,
maybe, (I forget all those stylish names) she 
let me in the locked backdoor of the coffee
shop, just not to see me freeze. I suppose
there were other places I could have gone.
-
But it was way too early I even had my own key
to the bookshop, but I never wished to get there
so early as to become suspicious. All that unknown
space, and all that suspicious race. Instead, so,
I stayed there happy. Hate the sin, love the sinner.
(Or however ways that goes).

9576. MISS GOLDBERG SEES THE SATYR

MISS GOLDBERG 
SEES THE SATYR
It's so funny, scenes like this don't happen
everyday. Pan and his flute. All those beings
with their cloven hooves. Ha. Hoof! Titillation
needing proof. Poof! There it is. This little
fellow has a five-day erection.
Need I say more?

Sunday, May 28, 2017

9575. KUNDALINI

KUNDALINI
(this dog does not like fireworks)
Who ate the snake, and where
did it go? I've tried staying centered.
I've tried watching on stars, focused
with my unfocused mind, and then 
leveled the world around me into a
flat planar space. All those labels you
speak of, they came tumbling down.

9574. WINTON FARMS TREE-RIPENED MILK

WINTON FARMS 
TREE-RIPENED MILK
'Yep, and that's the only kind I drink,'
he said, eating his free-range pizza. 'Ya'
never know any more what goes into yer' 
food, exactly, and can't be too careful.' I
wanted to agree, just because I was so tired
of always disagreeing with everything people
said. 'Yes, I understand. Have you ever tried
the recycled toilet paper they sell here? Not
to put it too roughly, but it goes on easy.'

9573. DECIDING TO STAY

DECIDING TO STAY
It may have been time. Maybe.
1975. I decided to stay : drunk for
three days, foul for four more. I
slithered the street like a madman
disguised as nothing. Sleeping on
the steps at St. Thomas Church,
with the three other madmen nearby.
The noisiest things in my life that week
were the bottles tumbling down from
the old stone steps. The kid from Indiana,
on the other hand, died in his sleep,
and we all had to disperse.

9572. HOW COME A BIRD...

HOW COME A BIRD...
Life is a mish-mash, a shudder of concept,
a bouquet, merely of things we accept,
and assume as correct. Why isn't a bird 
considered disabled because it has no 
arms? Why aren't we considered disabled
because we have no wings?

9571. WISE COTTON IN THE ASPIRIN BOTTLE

WISE COTTON IN 
THE ASPIRIN BOTTLE
I realize I don't really know much of anything
about myself : how I got this old, I do not know.
I remain uncomfortable with this life, nervous and
shy and squeamish. There are things I've never
gotten over. Childhood stuff, I guess. I do not
know what it means to be this way. If anyone,
say, ever saw my poop, I'd die. I've never
gotten over something about shitting : don't
know what it is. Embarrassment. Too shy again.
A certain weakness to not acknowledge facts.
-
Never got over things. Horrid stuff.  The odors
and the chimes of all this life. They pile up and 
sicken me. I want to run away. I certainly wish
for nothing of talking these matters out. Let's
be frank  -  that's why I write. A way to atone. 
I can dwell in my land, without bother, alone.


Saturday, May 27, 2017

9570. EVERYTHING YOU MUST DO

EVERYTHING YOU MUST DO
Defend the lie and its bright construction,
re-enter the morass after you just have left.
Consider the angles of what you've missed : 
who could have said what, and why. I
strolled the land today for clues, but found
nothing. A bright infernal light, like fire
and storm. The little people, clambering
all over their boats. The guy with the
Grady White, and his gun-metal shorts.
I think there should be a limit to people
wearing bandannas. Over at the ice 
machine, two black guys were shredding
bait, endlessly talking to each other, both
enraptured in what the other said : that
certain sort of black-talk I could never
recreate. The heads of March, that old
boll-weevil talk of plantations and cotton
fields. These two guys, no matter how 
old, I think it was still in their blood. 
That genetic quality was high. 
-
Two separate sets of strolling lovers
walked by me. The first, a set of youth,
book-ended by desire, and holding each
other, while the second couple, in their
sixties and worn, held hands and walked
by in a still-natural bliss, for their age.
The only thing betraying them was their
clothing : too telling, too cheap, too much
out-of-date color. I said nothing. A smile.

9569. A TRUNKLOAD OF GLORY

A TRUNKLOAD OF GLORY
Miserable sands of time. The
time before this. I am deciduous,
like a tree. I loose compulsion
as a tree loses leaves.

9568.PIERS PLOWMAN

PIERS PLOWMAN
So simple and low I am part of this earth,
these handfuls of dirt beneath me. Feet
walk on, hands parse soil, everything
separate and kept apart. Oh sky, do you
ever long for land? Oh land, would you
ever wish for sky? I measure my daily
misdeeds by how far I have dragged
this plow.

9567. GENUFLECTION

GENUFLECTION
Hey. I read the biology book from
back to front and now I'm a monkey
again? That's the sort of thing I
cannot understand. Like a deKooning
wash on a threadbare piece of cloth,
what matters is one thing  -  first blue
eyes  -  and then the other. The crowd
still files in and pays to applaud. But.
No. Matter. I remember some of those
guy, with cigarettes and their booze,
standing around the Cedar, smoking
with their brawn. What's the sense of
being a painter, if all you can end up
doing are things like that. And, of
course, all those famous Hampton
scenes ending in death. Pollock, oh,
Jackson. Pissing into someone's
fireplace again? I ended up dancing
with David Hare. Well, well. Edith
Metzger. Springs-Fireplace Road.
How's it go? It doesn't. No.
-
Genuflect then on this, you little
wanton heathen girl. I was your
conscience and your shadow, but
it's all over now. I could have been
a superstar  -  painter, clown, and
more  -  but now I'm so dead tired
of this whole entire scene. Why 
do we claw so harshly to climb
when the bottom's all we've got?
I can't even visit. I forget where
they laid your sacred body.



Friday, May 26, 2017

9566. HOW DOES THIS HAPPEN?

HOW DOES THIS HAPPEN?
So, Jeez, I didn't have track of the time,
and this hillside just kept me sliding,
and the grass was slick, wet, with 
cars down below. I had to secure
myself from sliding.
-
I hate discipline; people in straight
lines and everything by the book. I
guess I was born a wild man, a tax 
cheat, an hombre, a crook.
-
If I see a fence, my first impulse is
to jump it  -  the other side has another
side too. And I grow tired of this
heavy, antlered, head.

9565. BUNSALAHAMA MUJAHADEEN

BUNSALAHAMA MUJAHADEEN
When too much of this world becomes just a
chore what is a person to do? Where to go,
how to hold, catch bright sunlight in a happy
hand? I go to visit West Point. Yes, rows of
antique canons and field guns on wheels. The
tradition is, and has been, every place 'taken'
somehow loses a field gun to this grassy display.
Yes, I've heard of trophies, but why not just
take heads here and put them on stakes? Far
easier to carry, I'd figure; less costly too, the
transport. So, instead, on this touristy field
we gift wrap the dead, or their guns anyway.
A few faltering beauties here too  -  girls, I
mean. Visitors, tours, families and friends of
cadets. All that stuff. Impatient dads, measuring
themselves, I'd bet, against guns. There's an
entire philosophical school of that jam all
around. When I got here, they inspected my
car  -  went through the trunk and under the
seats. I may look like a 'terror' to them  -  they
who go home at night to watch their buttoned
TV's and their open-flap wives, but they've got
better guns and ammo here than I'd ever get
from any Bunsalahama Mujahadeen you'd find.
El Hatar Boumedi too. When too much of this
world becomes just a chore, what is a person
to do?

Thursday, May 25, 2017

9564. THE SWAMIS ARE ROAMING

THE SWAMIS 
ARE ROAMING
Om mane padme hum. I learned
that when I was twelve. Namu
Amida Butsu. That too. The
swamis are out there roaming.
Eclectic me, for sure.

9563. STUPID NEEDS

STUPID NEEDS
What can you lend me, tired friend?
How about a dirigible without any air?
Or helium? Whatever goes in there. Or
a fork with no tines, or a songbook that
rhymes? What can you give me right now?
-
So many hundreds of things I always 
wanted to know, and now the damn 
schoolbooks are empty. What is the 
music of the spheres? Where is the Gobi 
Desert, and who goes there? How many 
rhomboids can fit in a circled square?
-
So, see what I mean? Useless information?
Supposed to 'fire my imagination?' I can't
see the forest for the trees. I don't get these
wantings for all these stupid needs.

9562. ME USED TO BE

ME USED TO BE
Me used to be lost guy. Me.
Like the frieze of a sedge all
coming down, I got out of there
for free. Finding out later, of
course, that free doesn't really
cut it unless you're willing to 
give up a lot. Which I was so it
didn't much matter. No more 
dining at Fresno's or coffees
at Mars. Forget the booze and
the cars. Thus it was, life has
to become a gentle compromise.
-
Someone sent me, once, pictures 
of Annalee topless. That was OK,
and she didn't mind. Exhibitionists of
that nature look for such opportunities.
Aghast at nothing, they thrive. She
ended up somewhere, far off. I lost
touch, but at least I've got these
photos. Gentle compromise, again.
-
Me used to be a marksman  -  at the
rifle range I could shoot the whisker
off a running cat. Then, slowly, I began 
to lose my sharp vision. The eyes age
as the life runs on. My only hope now
is that the bullet will go right through 
its ears, and the cat will live on. That 
leaves out a lot, for I don't think 
they have empty heads.

9561. MY DOG WAS ON A CONGA LINE

MY DOG WAS ON 
A CONGA LINE
And that's where I found her. East St. Louis,
to be exact. Dancing up a storm. They said
I could adopt her if I wanted. She stopped
what she was doing and turned and said :
'Just don't call me a rescue. I have a
certain dignity due me, ok.' So I gave
the guy ten dollars. He said, 'Do you
want a bag?' I said, 'No, I'll take her
home the way she is.'

9560. LANDSLIDER

LANDSLIDER
Some, um, want the whole picture :
Here, um, is what I can give. Born
on a mountain top in Tennessee.
Killed a bear when I was just three.
-
Sheriff Oblongata came by to ask.
'Yes, Yes, he went that way...' No
further questions, BUT I did see 
him send another horse away.
Or. So. It. Looked. To. Me.
-
If I had your headstrong direction,
I'd probably be King by now. I
think if my father came back from
the dead  -  the long dead  -  he'd be
shocked to see what I've become.
-
Depending, of course, on where's he
been and what he's seen since last.
All opinions are changeable.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

9559. EVIL FOIL

EVIL FOIL
And yes I guess I detest
the evil foil : the gendarmes
with hallucinatory guns, the
boll-weevil enticers with their
cotton-ball noses and ancillary
spiked feet. I look at them only
to imagine how they would look
in their coffins. So that's pretty sad.
-
Mozart is immediately accessible 
to the naive. I understood that
statement as soon as I heard it  -
yes, yes, the precision, yes.

9558. JUST UP THE ATTC AND DIED

JUST UP THE 
ATTIC AND DIED
Everything changes. The circus is dead.
There are lesbians on every corner. New
cars can drive themselves. I want a car
to drive girls to the circus where clowns
still await them to drive them in little
red cars. Balloons on the steering wheels
instead of air in the tires. Good stuff like
that. Tents with automatic flaps like
a Shop-Rite has. Metal carts, all filled
with yams and peaches.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

9557. HAMMER OF THE GODS

HAMMER OF THE GODS
Screw that. It was
a rubber mallet.

9556. SLINGSHOT CABBY

SLINGSHOT CABBY
Trying to write a three-piece song but wearing a
three-piece suit. Where do I go with this one?
Mystery novels can't be made into songs, or
least-ways none that I can see. Everybody 
knows already what's behind the door, and, 
since the butler did it, they know what he 
used and what he did it for. And it's all so
apparently useless. Nobody reads anymore.
-
Around that Newark canyon there's a 
graveyard three-hundred years old. I can 
still read the names on most of the tombs : 
those that aren't scratched off are still
talking about themselves. The most simple
of dates, the birth and the death, and then
this Champean MacPherson guy who saved
a stage from falling off a cliff. Well that's
what it says: 'A good man who went 
out of his way for others.'
-
Today, I suppose, that just means mowing
your neighbor's lawn. Maybe. For nothing.
I have this slingshot I always carry around
on my belt. Useful here, for picking off birds
from the tombstones they've sullied. Nature
always bothers me - even among the dead.

9555. KEN PEN

KEN PEN
Here once more is that
damned address that gets
everything wrong. I awake 
again too early to get moving,
and the lamp is on in the alcove
nearby  -  that same lady who
leaves it on always I'm sure. These
are the people one gets to live with,
and there's just not much choice.
-
Brain matter like old bread : I watch
her as she waddles. Down three steps 
of concrete, and then over one. She 
stoops to pick up her paper, and starts
talking to cats. Good God not again.
-
There's a truck garage two yards over.
A few men stand around, always making
noise; cigarettes, jokes, and contortions.
Thy tire me out. They make me ill. The
long metal gates slams while they banter.
-
I want to go home, but then realize I've 
already done that and made that selection.
Where's replay? Let me make a correction.

9554. LITTLE

LITTLE
The sword to the hilt; deepness is the
lance of depth, internalized forever.
I want to write this, short. 
My dagger. My scabbard.

9553. ANY PORT IN THE STORM

ANY PORT IN THE STORM
It's taken me this far and long to come
to grips with what I am : not to tarry,
but I won't remain. I am from another
place and they are taking me back. My
standard definitions are fluid, and
my life force, a roiling semen on a
cosmos of dreaming, must go when
called. Such is the agreement.
-
I've sat in a breakfast lane in old
St. Augustine. That was enough
for me. Trees, some greenery,
and the strangest feelings ever.

9552. PEDIGREE

PEDIGREE
This morning will have value, but
alone it will make its way : 10,000
chapters with 10,000 different words.
Do not falter here. Putting down that
carpet of green is Spring's only real task
and  -  now wet or now dry  -  the job's
getting done. Embellish me in color.
-
It was just back in November when I 
had to face the future. It was the 5th,
and I was in Ohio : hard as it was to
think of the Winter, that scabbard of
edgy violence still to arrive. I carved
the Alleghenies as I drove at full-hilt
speed. For me. A confidence level.
-
My shorthand here debases what I'm 
saying. Let me tend to re-phrase my 
words. In the deep black of morning,
and right before the dawn, I saw the
velvety sky descending. Stars and a
crystal chandelier. Things twirling.
Angels calling me back; everywhere.


9551. WHY IS GRETCHEN LIKE THAT?

WHY IS GRETCHEN 
LIKE THAT?
And the answer is, 'I don't know.' The 
wallpaper has now covered the garage 
and the moonbeams have captured my
heart. The pasture is left for the wide-open
cows, and all things have the room that
they need. It was a mere ten years back,
or so, when the bankers were jumping
from windows  -  all those 'too big to
fail' types had run out of luck. It was
2007 back then too, yes, in my head. 
I was sitting at the train platform, 
like every sad morning after morning 
I'd been living then. I had to listen to
all this stuff, and no one, really, wanted
me around. The banker, ever day, on his
way to Philadelphia, and that girl who
worked for the monument commission
there. Her too. A queen from Trenton's
recycling bin. Attempts at a-propos, all 
just made me glum. I had the temperment
of a ground hog. Oh just leave me be.
-
What to do when your hands are soggy
and your mind is dry?The rough and ready
crowd, nowhere to be seen. This was slow
torture, if you know what I mean.

Monday, May 22, 2017

9550. THAT PAROXYSM IS A DEATH

THAT PAROXYSM 
IS A DEATH
Now I say these things. Once.
Is it because you feel that I am 
a better machine than a human 
that you would defer to others 
and let me be? Has it occurred 
to you that the outside meaning 
of any philosophical rendering of 
the life existent can never take 
in other life forms from other 
places? I believe that to be
incorrect. We make that 
error at our own full risk. 
The bathtub holds the 
towel-rack. The corner
holds the candle.

9549. BECAUSE OF

BECAUSE OF
The lady in Biloxi said,
'I never been anyplace I
wanted to go.' I turned to
her and replied, 'Hi. Couldn't
help but overhear. Because of
the laying on of hands, I am
now without arms. Because of
all my running in place, I now
am quite far from home.'

9548. TAKE THIS AND RUN

TAKE THIS AND RUN
So like it is: You can't have my
Being and Nothingness beard, and
I'm sorry for that. It tolls the bell
for Freedom for me. And (re-member)
'ask not for whom the bell tolls. 
It tolls for thee.'

Sunday, May 21, 2017

9547. OVER SEVENTY BOOKS

OVER SEVENTY BOOKS
You read them like flies and then
simply forget. Or jumble them
all together. Into one huge book
of a so-mysterious plot. I forget
more than I ever knew : thirty
dumb novels by Walter Scott;
forty-six by Dickens, probably
better; thirty-three by Balzac; all
of the Brontes, and Jane Austen.
What a massive float of rubbish.
Learning enough French in time
to straw-pick my way through
Victor Hugo  -  the novels, and
his poetry too. With the bulk of
Sartre, and Camus.

9546. LOSING GRIP

LOSING GRIP
I am losing. My. Grip. 
all I wanted was a gallery
which featured my own work.
Nothing. More. Just a place to
be each day, and work. In. A.
Sort of beatific silence. A tiny,
white storefront, even, would do.
Was that so complicated? Maybe
even a loft, in the back. Where
I. Could. Live.
-
Now I'm making a 6-wine omelet,
with peppers and potatoes too.
In a bucket. Over an open flame,
outdoors. Maybe it's fancy eating.
I'll have to let you know.
(I am losing my grip.
I don't know where to go).

9545. SO HAND-ME-DOWN WORN-OUT

SO HAND-ME-DOWN 
WORN-OUT
I went to the sage, I went to the morsel,
and the pepper and the slice. Here, where
they keep the secret recipes hid. There
were five old houses in a row  - suffering
each, leaning and pale and broken. No one
seemed to live in any. On the corner, blue
glass and a pizza store, trying.
-
A person can't return from nowhere 
without something. It would seem to me:
a hand-me-down, worn-out trinket, 
or something given, for free.

9544. MY NEW PROJECT

MY NEW PROJECT
This life is a frolic to me, like a
game played with dominoes, somehow,
on the wide-open sea. My new project
will be : 'Pictures of things in the way.'
-
It seems pretty simple for someone 
handy with a camera : 'Well this was
supposed to be tree, but that wall,
which is what you see, got in the way.
-
The way I figure, I can't go wrong.
Even the crummy pictures will have
an excuse built within. 'This was 
supposed to be that nice old house; 
but the car jumped in.'