Saturday, September 30, 2006


This is not me.
This is not faithless poison.
This is not your arms around my
This is not my aching.

These are not your words
on the receiver.
This is not my ticking bomb,
the eating out of someone's heart.

This is not you or
your god blinking through
This is not white Christmas

with me in your kitchen.
This is me breaking the dishes.
These are not greasy

This is you in the doorway
thinking about us
bending into
something ugly.

This is me watching you
and leave
like a magician.

Learning to touch

Premature babies live longer
when stroked like tiny dogs
in plastic shells.

Hearts speed up
for the feel of hands smoothing
baldness and fragility.

The ugly nurses stay late
to comfort
their loneliness like

miniscule pink miracles.

Old men stop by the windows
and look in
at death's opacity.

Learning to touch,
we imagine the world
as a giant mother

who must give us up,
naked animals,
to the human wilderness.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Inspiration in Strange Places

I have been reading a lot of literary reviews, film reviews, etc. as of late. Some of these ideas have become mental seeds, burgeoning into odd little narratives and poems.

Here are two that were written after reading Todd Swift's latest posts, with particular inspiration drawn from the Black Dahlia review.

High Altitude

She was where they could not be.
So they desired her heel, the point of castration,
the syndicated shows about divorce, the other D word,
then the lull of sidewalk lines.

She would have them enter after breakfast –
Lost ladies with the aftermath
or the boneyard –
the dark visitation of veiled mistresses.

Something about winter makes men fall.
Could be the cold that drives them
forward or the black ice of complications.
She has plenty

of money, you know.
She doesn't need to boast – the kind of rich
that puts sailors to bed.
Songs play softly in the background, “Lie to me…”

She says, “If you are here when this is spoken,
find comfort in the cruel season.”
Here there is no blonde that can take away humiliation;
No wife to return to when she is done.


Eighth Day Diary

To meet you is to meet enormity; that vacuum believers call destiny
or reiteration.
Hummingbird wings could beat slow motion – a camera still –
or the atomic bomb, whatever differentiates.

You breathe in
the world on its axis. From here – oceans are puddles are afterbirth.
You can pretend to be removed,
askew or still in bed before the arrival.

All the constellations have been registered.
Formulas have been answered, the burning call.
So you have nothing to solve or name
except an old El Camino you got when you turned 16,

and this.
What name will you give for fingers cramped, licking
envelopes, a basement stairwell full of week old laundry.
In the arena of your mind,

you become her, then obliterate.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

A Mild State of Panic

You ask to see the skin on my elbow, rubbed into a chalky white,
rough with a small diagonal scar, a rotated crescent moon.
When you finish with skin, you proceed to my tongue.
Later, my entire body - needle marks and starvation language
-- held over from the nineties --

You break this down into two roads - one to Heaven,
and, well, you know where the other goes.
Botched surgery leaves one breast slightly larger than the other.
You write notes to return to,
my smile again, then my inner thighs. You stop here.

Write something. Breathe and sigh.

All of this takes an hour and then the nurses return.

On the silver boat, I sail into the antiseptic feverscape
where the body is a motor, then a carnival.

My arms navigate
these Seven Seas of toxicity -
The flashing lights, once love and
lust, now foolish penalties.
-- and the sounds of children
laughing and screaming
around me.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Meeting destiny

he opened the door
I knew what he would say,
almost like his face would open and clouds would drift in and out as words intermingled with white then fade. He had a name like Mike or Jim because his name would not matter in the end; it would escape down the metal ladder that leads to a random NYC alley outlined here, in my writing. He came to see me.
He worked up the courage
to tell me where
it would all end,
and how it would
He knew I’d
deny it.
He saw the bullet hit.

Monday, September 18, 2006


I've been waiting for you.
You were a wind-up toy,
diabolical indigestion.
A sore
I picked at until a sad brown scab
fell to the floor.
My mirror
for a moment, reflecting
crisp cool weathered face
and sunset smile.
Now you are a disgrace
to my dignity.
You'd pull up a chair to any plate,
this horn aplenty.
Your whores could wait.
I hate that word, whore, the way
it lulls, fat flab of menopausal women.
Stinking under the arms,
trying to shine
or burn.

I've been waiting for you,
a rabbit's foot.
You were ten dozen men tucked
into one small corner of the world.
A diorama
of my life, the little pieces
a girl, a chair, blue skies.
But I am awake now.
I no longer wait because
seeing is believing

and I can see
Where you are
is nowhere I want to be.

Thursday, September 14, 2006


Like lamb's ear
Like new gum
Like tongue
Like Carmen's hips
Like cardigans
Like blue suede shoes
Like getting bruised
Like baby bones
Like used tissue
Like being used
Like radio waves
Like banjo skin
Like a pig's belly
Like secondhand couches
Like Leave It To Beaver
Like my mother's chest
Like an old man's step
Like you say Yes
Like we hold hands
Like the years that hold
Like glue
Like the center of the earth
Like a believable ending
Like pulp fiction
Like soggy TP
Like you holding me
Like we are an atom
Like we implode
Like dust
Like swimming to another
Like waiting
Like arrival

Friday, September 08, 2006

The Snake Charmer's Daughter

A pearl
or the moon.

They still come to you,
Greek and shadows.

On my heel,
a tattoo -

the fire-eater.

You hold asp to your chest
and laugh -

youngest daughters
still impressed by prowess.

The dancing
females are fat with babies.

I wear your death threats
in the place of their veils.

My wild
Arabian nights, spat out,

bad meat. I write
the stories of circumcision.

Speak pleasure
in the name of bandits

and rise with the sun,
living to spite

your name,
patron of thieves.