Tuesday, August 30, 2011



I wasn't nothing didn't want to be not sure of
anything like that anyway and then the man
from the scrapple house comes by asking his
directions to another version of his own certain
Hell ! well instead I sat back and watched the
weathering traffic roll by all skunked and
scattered as it were around its own pole of
moment : red car and blue car and the
ding-a-ling derby of long trucks filled with
junk just like that this everything went
rolling by. You can be sure of so many
things just by asking someone about
them and whatever it is going on, but
you'll never come back from oblivion
and you'll never wish you had gone.


Two pipe-smoking men, collecting
stamps, were sitting at their table,
hunched over something. They quietly
chatted at will, handling this while
touching on that. Alas, they were
but illusion, one from a distant
past - they were not truly
present there at all, just
glowing shadows from
another fine beyond.

3245. REALLY

I have been formed in the middle
only so that I can work my way back -
past the start, through the ending
and back again. It is, really, a very
simple matter. A very simple
matter it very really is.

Friday, August 26, 2011

3244. HIDING

(Her Yellow Car Door)
Needle-tip Wilbur Point Tommy
Makem blues - I got them all in
force, I got them by ones and twos.
Some idle girl, I watched her, slamming
shut the yellow car door. Intense attack,
prodigious movement, and energy too.
Her every move was massive.
Her movement rippled
out into the air.
How we misplace all we do -
so often things we think
of seeing turn out to be not at all
what we sought. A turning leaf,
a decided thought, so much distance,
so much place. And then all that which
is, taking life of its own, meanders on
with what memory it may.
We stand idly by.
The misshapen barque of fools : a tidy
craft, riding rising seas, sullen and
swank. All those hands, waving,
and the white linen kerchiefs, I
see, now flying through the air.
So much turns out to be not
what we sought. I went to hide
(so as as not to be caught).

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Space is greater than time
in its availability; time is
greater than space in
its effectiveness.


The shadow that disappeared
left no trace, not even a marking
on the wall. As if it had been smoke,
I remember something, but
already nothing at all.

Monday, August 22, 2011


Well, Brother Mike, it's mainly because I've gone crazy;
they've taken the shovel away from me, all the notes,
the camera, the money, the film and the documents too.
It makes everyone much better feeling when they can
realize I've got nothing left at all. They've made
me a midget, yet I try to stand tall.
Well, Sister Mary, they've put me in a cell, and now
I'm clanking metal chains everywhere I go. There's
really no magic left. Even the food is now pale gruel.
Slid in on trays, the courses I get are nothing at all
and even the few bugs who visit pass by. Like blind
men seeking water, whatever comes my way is dry
and crashing into walls. I have no way out and there
is nothing left. Please tell the clerk to cancel me.
Well, Mom and Dad, now sorry to say it's over
and done, or soon to be anyway. I've arranged for
the medicine to come in a case, a dose way too big
for my innards. I'll take it and sleep, (ah, that long
forever), while what I leave to chance is left
behind so that you can have it. Treat it well.


By desperation, by stealth, by intention,
I savage my heartbeat to live : yes, yes,
I stay on, staggering and wild, listening
to each thump beating through me. I
savage my heart to live. In one place,
where I stand, the water runs down.
On the face of the growing elm, where
sap leaks and gathers, some strange,
awesome moth cleaves and stays -
in one place, seemingly stuck, savage
as well drawing something from that
wound and its sap. Wings are closed,
to paper, and then opened, full width,
to some prodigious orange glory. I
watch to stay, and wish to watch.
My life, limitless in its own way,
lives on, propels and forces me.
I remain in place. Witness to the
playful rants of stories and tales,
all those human things we tarry
with - telling stories to ourselves,
writing lines, and designing, here
at last, civilizations of our very own.


I was reading Gerontian with my head
in a noose. At any moment, I knew, the
chair could be pulled from under me.
Feeling boxed in, encaved, enclosed
yet unprotected, my shivering premise
mixed fear and doom. Oh dear.
I was reading Gerontian with my
hands on the block - as if some
weird Arabic punishment, some
intrepid Muslim debauch, would
leave me limbless and lame. Better
then to just move on - please keep
the hands for the writing, if nothing
else (and, even though I hadn't, I
will never touch your daughter again).
I was reading Gerontian while choking
on slime - things being forced down
my gullet by a shrieking torture-master
named Tumo. Never having met before,
I hardly knew the man's purpose or
patter or poise. Oh, all for naught, all
that tendentious and social drivel.
Have I told you enough about what
I was doing? I had (really) no clue,
other than these evidences given,
where I was headed or what this
life was about - indeed if it is
about, really, anything at all.


I brought to the fort a few
cherished items : thoughts in
a wreath, like memory hanging
beribboned and joyful. Everyone
took their turn singing - even the
impish busker, having just landed
there for a spell. I imagined water,
and a lake along some shoreline so
magically becalmed. As darkness
neared, I saw the owl stir - a doubtful
movement in a darkening air. Rustle,
head-turn, and an odd bird-noise so
unlike any other. This was the distant
bric-a-brac of some other land, a faraway
place now guarded by this fort and these
people within. I sensed a new place
one to which I had not been before.

Friday, August 19, 2011

3237. MARE

Having held my form to myself -
too long, too long - I now seek a
wandering expression, stallion-like,
bursting a range and leaping a fence.
The lightning bolt, scratching forth
the sky, reminds me then of something
else : I am not now, nor ever have I been,
really, something other than what I want
to be. Moonlight. Clouds. Fire. Something
desolate, out with fire, solitary, alone.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


The trellised rose knows nothing
but its growth - its clutching,
fevered madness to flower and
bloom. And then it dies. And
then, again, it knows
nothing at all.


In walking past Zelda's nuthouse,
there were things I had to do :
park this unvalued car, slide past
the No Entry signs, enter the
downing hallway, the steps past
which she'd glide. I felt for sure
as if I'd been here before, watching
the cabinet where the old ghost
apparition haunched. She is there,
so wide awake and teeming. I nod
my head, and she tickles my froth
by laughing. Back, back, and on
again. I cannot even truly remember
the year, for there often are none
really, and anyway it's all a blur.
Her white gauze dress, the way
the light clambers back and
around her, that old, cold smell
of clammy meat cooking. And that
is all. As such is my report, human,
as such is my report now back to you.

3234. ALSITAIN ( El Citain)

ALSITAIN (El Citain)
No certainty like the citation of
Time : listen up, oh squandered
Moon. The night wanes, and all
those outdoor smells are in the
air; like the odor of creosote
dripping from the eagle's eye.
Midnight's mansion, mourning
movement, oasis waits. Having
been waiting as well, I too have
marveled - clouds on high, even
in the darkness, passing.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


(Kingdom of Food)
Running backwards with a Julia Child
logic : to speak, then : pinch, sprinkle,
douse, spread - regale morfosto forester
poise. The grace of flour, the skill of
skillet. The sizzle and wash of
both sound and food.
As luck would have it, the fluke
of a latter logic had soaked up
all the sauces. We stood around
disentangled and yet disparaged
by one and by all.
No one has since come calling.
The garlic still roasts, as cloven-hoof
Harry himself boasts of his bastings.
Bring more vinegars and oils. And,
then - 'midst all this oveny heat -
the lights, and only the lights at all,
go out in our new Kingdom of Food.

Sunday, August 14, 2011



(H)as kept me stranded in place. Unmovable,
like an object of marble, abject and alone. Each
chiseled marking on my face bears its meaning.
They now come by just to read my expressions.
I parlay this monstrous allusion into so
many other things : a fearsome loyalty, a
coarse allegiance, a slowly and triangular
reference to my Godless self. I am that
which has come before, and (yes) yes it
was Marcus Aurelius who said : 'Live life
as if already dead.' How many shades
of darkness, then, are there?
Live on, oh heedless one : carrier of
death-rays, slinger of spears, chaser
of carrion and plier of Death. Step
lightly over those piles of the
doomed before you. They will
see you, they will hear, but they
shall never answer back.



As the rocks of Santo Bello were piled at
the ridge, the high stations of some very
bizarre cross and story, so the water
trickled down. Turning swiftly into a
roar, just as soon as the dark sky opened.
We ran for a shelter, found leeward to the wind.
A few old women, I noticed, in their bedraggled
dresses, still insisted on crossing themselves.
Holy sites are forever, in staggered little minds
at least. Why bother? Ask them anything at all,
and they'll blame in some Divine alteration.
Alongside the muddied path, two girls were selling
flowers from a tray, and nearby, in a hut, a old
man offered ices and water for a price. For
the grand goodness of this one holy God,
perhaps the only one left indecisive, we
must cater to crowds and bring profit
and glory (of whatever sort) to God.
Subconscious motives make nothing
at all in the roaring of yellow camp.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

3230. ARRIVISTE (Lese Majeste)

(lese majeste)
The wind came by water, as the water
came by wind. The Pilgrims came by
boat, everything they smote. The
schemers came by air, the fires came
by oil, the oil came as fires, everything
I ran for my rifle, and shot
at the river - feeble plinks
in a calm facade of surface
water all too deep for me
to fathom.


Throw disarray.
Throw disarray.
Throw disarray.
Throw disarray.
Stop. Save this.

Friday, August 12, 2011

3228. THE CROSSWORD GULCH GAME (Conditional)


In the nineties - as such it
is said - we made our fortune
(Amerika, that is) exporting
computers and Viagra :
software and hardware, it
would be termed : before
the crash of time and
pillage and effort cancelled
all of that out, so to speak.

Thursday, August 11, 2011


Three flights, dog-down steps, broken paddle-arches,
all the rest. Loquacious to a fault, slinking like a dream,
running not to hide, drinking global tea with a spoon.
Whatever for are these whatevers for? Watch the
BBC too soon and more : Strawberry burning fields cars
Forever Penny altercation Lane seems everywhere now
like one big driftwood Paki boom with each intensive
neighborhood now on-line now singing to the rest.
In his pocket, keeps a picture of the Queen.
Fireman rushes in.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011



I have a nasty habit of moving along,
inscribing certain nomenclatures on
walls of brick and stone. I cannot
claim these things I do not own.
The body moves (moves, tries to,
matters), while staying in place.
I am all that I venture to leave,
(thereby, as well, just as much).
In the same way, the 'Logos' -
I am taught - guides a human
soul to the realm of the Divine.
I do not know. I do not mind.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


It wasn't a church, you fool, but a county,
called 'parish' somehow in those parts -
and pronounced, in that tongue, I found
out as well, as 'Domenyi', with a 'y'.
Can't figure out, don't try. It
just goes on in that manner.
Along the luxuriant lakefront,
vines and growth and the trees
hung close; drooping over the
rich shore like some green
southern money sent from
Heaven above. We've all
got places like that,
I suppose.
Like Ma Rainey's plaint in
Southern Blues - I heard
it from 1923 - 'House catch
on fire, ain't no water 'round,
if your house catch fire and ain't
no water 'round, throw your trunk
out the window, building burn on down.'
I guess any precaution is a good precaution.

Monday, August 8, 2011


Well then, let us lead off with something :
a list of the ancient Kings, a geography of
ancient cities, something to remember
us by. Yes, Us; that varied race of stalwart
little animals, smudging our lands
and places with human grime.
As we are, so we ever were : no worse
than groundhogs, moles, weasels, ants.
There are no specific words to mark
this alleged and swampy dump. The
rusted cars of other days, yes, they do
still sag and rot on weakened springs,
with rusty water and broken glass, in
place - sagging to metal death in certain
junkyards of our minds. We do not mind.
Having to run, like this, leave quickly,
go and come, these are harsher burdens.
The color of lead? Perhaps a very
meaningless gray, like the shade
of so much of our own time.

Friday, August 5, 2011


Down from my native Muenster
the Millicent Fenwick engage; that
pipe-smoking curl of a ravaged face,
wrinkled and wet and raw, and the
lemonade server near where the dog
sits. Native grounds? Oh I say, no
coffee today. It's, by contrast, a
wonderful window bears watching;
(from Regensburg to Wittenberg,
seems all the Gods are throwing bolts).
I awoke without a start, so slowly and
lazily too that it was all I could do not
to think of you. Once, a long, long time
ago, we'd somehow left the light on, and
your clothes were everywhere. Now?
Never mind the matter like a banknote -
dollars or coins or metal. I tried hard
to listen to nothing at all, but - outside
the window - that Spanish guy with his
forthright tongue, again, was laughing,
again. I hate that happy tone.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


Eating an apple by the old wooden swings,
watching the birds swoop by, I stretched out
my arms to measure the sky, and realized -
just like that - that it was all too big for me.
Biting down hard, I thought of the fruit and
the seeds I was eating, what grew into pulp,
what remained for future growth. Behind me,
almost in a ragged stealth, that same old river
as always rolled by. Some kids were drinking
beer. Over at their blanket, on the grass, their
noise was loud and raucous. Two girls were
dancing to what seemed laughter and glee.
Off to the right, wasteland, surplus grounds,
the ruins of an old brick mill and - of course -
some monstrous and rusted oil tanks stuck onto
the ground. Gigantic round pillars, fizzed with
old paint and oxidation - rust-colored blue,
old pipes and nozzles, a guardhouse where no
one has been for years. The fence keeps out
what it can't let in. The old condoms on the
grass however, I'd bet, attest to something
else. Love grows where my Rosemary goes,
and all that old musical stuff. Everywhere, a
new glimmer of life and expectation. High,
high up, the white plume of some passing
jet, and, across the field, those girls just
dancing their time away.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011


1. And the Knesset. For no other reason.
Wives are in Jerusalem sunning.
The leading of the pipes runs the
water down to the drainage lake.
It's always somehow Summer
where here this once God lived.
I never met anyone I knew.
Christopher Durang, Mel Torme,
Winthrop Regmanster, the old
old Duke of New Burnham. Nor,
now, this left-handed, fickle God
dealing so badly with its
own hand-me-downs.
2. And the man in the yellow shirt, with his
fingers around the coffee cup, shaking almost
violently. 'I got the shakes, bad. For a couple
years now. Doctor says onset, Parkinson's.'
I want to tell him about my friend, who
died years ago from the progressive onset
of that very disease. Herb Rosen that was.
It was sad; his body, at the end, was like a
constant motor running. I hadn't
thought of him for years, or that.
3. And I am an abstract person, a lens with no
focus, a point with no point. I saddle my feet
in leather shoes. I've never worn 'sneakers'
in my adult life. These are things, this leisure
stuff and all its ease, that I find I just would
never do. Like Nixon, walking on a beach
in his suit and leather shoes. Why?
4. And over there, there's a man dressed as a nun,
still wailing about something never undone. All
that catholic crap : it's so over. Long Tall Sally,
and those fucked up rosary beads, skimming
old prayers to newer and newer high heavens.
While, within myself, beneath the bridge, at the
old diving rocks by the Columbia football field -
where - by the way Jack Kerouac (Railroad Jack)
long time back broke forth his leg, and I'm watching
the Metro North go slicing by and - in this most
unCatholic feeling - I too just want to die (but we'll
cross that bridge, no matter how high,
when we get up to it).


Snakebit effusive charmer wild-eyed
archer seeker in the stars recalled once
more to Troy - I know all that ancient
story, written harsh in these desultory
bones, bringing up memories each
time I feel lost and far away.
'It isn't anything I can feel' - such
was my answer to the madd'ning
doctor who was crouched before
me. 'Instead it's as if I was eating
berries and then shitting fire,
spouting stones, spitting mire -
a general, not at all complaisant
malaise.' Not knowing at all what
I was talking about, he laughed.
'Oh, Philoctetes, you'll be okay.
You're just missing your home;
but forget about it, they'll never
have you back.' I never felt more
destitute or sad, as if chiseled
pebbles, like glass, rolled
around in my mouth.

Monday, August 1, 2011


Before the morning ended, it had been,
already, a close call. That radio you had
playing in the basement; some dumb, old
Ray Charles tune I could never figure out.
It seemed to run forever when most
unwanted. Like a needle beneath the skin.
Feet up, and just looking out, I watched
you make some coffee. Down below, nothing,
while outside, the clamor of 17th had already
begun. A furniture truck, an antique supply-
house 'supplying' antiques. Go figure on that
one, I thought to myself. Too close to call,
all those craft-art people scouring old barns
for mission-antique country furniture. All
a lie, and I knew it now. The shiny metal
globe they were bringing in, on its valued
silver pedestal. That old gilt-framed portrait,
I bet, was of great-Grandad Cyrus Hardenberg
himself, straight back from the Civil War.
Too close to call, that close call already.