Archive for July, 2013

Father

July 30, 2013

Kernels of hard dried corn in his shoes
picked and shucked from the home garden
when he perspired, oil sweat out
soaked into socks
he was contained and cool
a level plain on a hoed and tilled field
straight rows of disciplined veg:
tomatoes, peppers, cukes
labor of the soil was a cloak against the world’s ease
hard work a raincoat against torrential relaxation
uniform and steady – usually
a Marine denied his Vietnam
asthmatic in Puerto Rico
for all his calm it was a calm before the war
the one he never got
but was always ready for
running through the jungle
and then there was his wife
in a gesture, a word
an inflection, a look
the heat of battle came to the front
peace broken
fire under foot
and that dessicated old gold
in the flame beneath the soles
would get to popping over
and the next thing he knew, he was on the run
poppity-poppity-pop-pop-pop
pounding the gravel on country roads
pop-pop
into the woods, over hill and to the city
poppity-pop-ping-pop
along river, around lake
beating the earth like a dusty threadbare rug
on a journey, seeking his jungle denied
miles raced, trophies won
5k to marathon… across the country
keeping his plants growing at home
as his tracks lengthened through the snow
hot breath, frost on the beard
my mother might have been his war
the one he could never stop expecting
hard-wired by militaristic need
and he went to it, willingly
happy to have it, finally, an adversary
no bullets could best

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The Buckhorn

July 28, 2013

“When that fuckin’ sun goes down,” he said
In the fall of 1979
a baby girl is one year and seven months –
the hanging fat of her birth
overlays a six year hiatus since the first.
Young parents in love
who never were
look to a national craze
like a smoker’s cough
expelling archaeological dust
into the sex-life sarcophagus
of twisted fallopians
and railroad ties
binding passive strands
to aggressive locomotives
where Jazzercise engines
spit hateful plumes of love
into dead pools of labor
where tired deaf ears
hear sardonic harps
playing for slack mortal muscle
as the beats
hit everyone with their best shots
Pow! Pow!
Punches misdelivered on the air
waves waggling misdirected. Disconnect.
Like a kicked dog at 5:30
so happy
to see daddy
who’s never been less happy
to see her
since the ring went on and the son was born
a time capsule of miserable liberalism
tearing at a militaristic legacy
and twisting it into stale hymns
of an embattled republic
only a fat mother
in the Buckhorn of 1968 Chevy Malibus
could love straight off the lot
like the beggar’s tale of dialysis and daughters
and please mister I just need a fiver for the bus ticket
to get my ass home
and onto the mat
clad in leotard
a superhero beating the paycheck’s hard discipline
that cuts grass for a dollar
a movie
a popcorn
an escape
and a love
that was nothing to do with money
or the fathers who breed it.

Today’s Latest Defect

July 26, 2013

A face like motel lobby carpet welcomes me
in the toothpaste spattered mirror
worn and threadbare
unraveling in acid-ingested swirls of busted blood vessels and acne
The sputtered remains of dental froth overlays my face
and joins the tapestry of zits and ruptured capillaries
like pecker tracks on a cheap whore’s corpse
brings me to today’s latest defect:
puss-colored snips of fishing line
seeping out of my skin
rusted tweezers grip and yank
two inch bits of me
right out of me
straight from my face
I don’t know what they are
but I know I don’t want them
They wriggle on the tweezers’ end
attempting escape like little severed limbs
full of life and itchy memory
they drop into the sink
and fight each other… five of them in battle
entwined, they whimper and squeak
and plead, “Father why?” as one by one they are vanquished
until the victor emerges
I commend him on a battle well fought
and eat him with trout and eggs for breakfast.
He tastes of me.

Blown Away

July 24, 2013

Two balloons
baby blue and yellow
the size of blood oranges
scuttle towards me down
the concrete slab sidewalk
they jerk and twitch
DT stricken
baby blue dips behind
a black
inverted “U”
bicycle hitch
wobbles precariously
along the red kerbing
sensibly not parking
nearly tumbles into the gutter
then gets caught in the backdraft
of a general services truck
flips into the air
executes a triple somersault
double twist and plants itself
two feet to my right
yellow has made it too
staked under the table
on my left
I feel hunted
they are only balloons
partially deflated
but in their hearts they still hold
the breath of life
a man’s breath – meat rot
and tooth decay
I am prey
cornered
trapped easily
between two divisions of killers
ready to snap shut
on my location
I’m a dead man
passersby in cars
gawk at me
smell my fear
truth is in their eyes
I am a dead man
a couple fucking balloons
broke free from a child’s backyard party
have me
they have got me
where the smokes, drinks, freeways did not
I make my peace
close my eyes
enjoy the last caress
of California’s warm
desert driven winds
and
winds, winds, winds
ah-ha!
open my eyes
baby blue and yellow
twirl away
round and round
one another – a double helix
traced through space
into the street
where the light is green
and the 720 rapid express
knocks the wind out of them
and drags their deflated
wrinkled remains away
now all I have to worry me is the pigeon
parked asshole out over the roofs edge
directly above my head

Rights

July 22, 2013

Hello, this is fierceness
hate and raining wrath
three of a kind
enviously consumed
more eagerly by masses
than one
of a kind

Listen, this is entropy
chaos and rampaging riot
burning a nation’s fuel
its intellectual store of power
obliterated
ashes and dust
blown skyward by credulous fury

Behold, this is decay
rot and sweet devourment
nothing lives
that doesn’t die
and can’t rebirth
crumbling country obsessed
by calamities of cock and mouth

Hey, this is the end
road closed, bridge out
infrastructure eroded
we’re blasted
left forgotten
people of a dead uncaring state
objectivist nightmare galted

Yo, one more thing
you did this
fuck sandwich
sold capitalism out to greed
gutted democracy with security’s bayonet
it was your crowded will done it
dead to rights

The Tao of Poo

July 20, 2013

The kid won’t let me shit
screaming in his cage
as Spic dragsters
race Jap machines
in first
unable to up shift
I spray
like an unholy inverted fountain
mocking all the angels
to the whirrs of strained
engine harmonics
and the squalls of neglected
infant histrionics
I attempt the reconciliation
of intellectual nihilism
with my evolutionary heritage
caring in the face
of a time-bomb sun
expanding to wipe mankind’s ass
clean from art and lit
like a Scott tissue swiped
up Topanga canyon
over hemorrhoids
a bloodletting burnnn…
until the universe
grows a cold, kind
heat death
after all the world’s
love goes stagnant
like a sad Martian river
hosting the last
of us bobbing
alien inner-tubers
up E.T. shit creek

Murder Well

July 18, 2013

Into my life
a son was born
for no cosmic purpose
to save no souls
nailed to no cross
inherit no throne
just a boy
as it were
another damn animal
doomed to share my home
eat my food
watch my television
steal my peace
rob me of quiet solitude
spare me of no time
demands are made
to playground parks we go
aggressive girls in flower print dresses
needless piercing shriek and chase
combative boys
in ball caps and stripes
grunt, whoop and run
wearing thin soles
of sweatshop shoes
obese, gooey, sticky
soda guzzlers
popsicle suckers
ice cream sandwich smeared faces
sick with satiety
yelling happy
into this mad fray
I release my son
into playful battle
as I sit on the green bench
waiting
for the sugar high crash
and all the joy and bliss
to turn to hate and piss
junkie fights
for scraps of Skittles
last Go-Gurt licks
swallowed by the final rays of a dying Capri-Sun
this now is my time
where I see it
what is to come
of this crowd of children
the nasty, brutish, selfish things
that lurk under
their thin veneer of pleasure
washes away so easy
I see them there
in the future
they are the violent wars
over diminishing resources that will be
and I do believe, I mean, look, you can just tell
they shall murder one another supremely well

Fag You’re It

July 16, 2013

Today’s shock and awe
is tomorrow’s boredom
your faggot sport’s star
coming out
is a homophobic Republican
it’s all yesterday’s news
before today is even over
so fast do norms shuffle by
like a flip book of illustrations
running it into the end zone
into the locker room
lathered up
in the shower
the touchdown finally
coming with a jockful sigh
at the flick of a tongue
at a wink and a smile
at a lube and a poke
it is time to get over it
children clinging
to nostalgic games
tag you’re it
fag you’re hit
no more cares
and then we wonder
why’d we ever

1972

July 14, 2013

Everybody lives in their time
precisely and in no other
they might desire
to have been born into another
even go so far as to say
too late they came into this world
I do not feel as them
my years have been the right ones
a kindergarten fueled by Star Wars
Halloween trick or treating
after the sun had set
a nation reeling in post-Watergate
conspiracy paranoia
Bigfoots prowled the forests
UFOs patrolled our skies
psychics ran rampant
no spoon was saved
their bending ways
past life regressions
pleased those who needed
to have lived in another time
yes, even they got their way
a dream fulfilled
in many respects
it was a minefield of idiots
but, I don’t think
dangerous idiots like now
of the anti-vaxxxer
climate change denier sort
I’ll take a glowing finger up the ass any day
over one of these bitches intent on bringing back the Plague
but let’s move on
my time is winding down
not there’s no one who ain’t older
but the hill’s been crested
I made it
razor-bladed apple didn’t get me
toxic Tylenol didn’t get me
Hillside Strangler didn’t get me
should I come across as over-pleased
don’t think of me that way
much like everyone else
I had my Fosters and Hinkleys
my moon landings and Challengers
and here I am
41 down
41 more’d be okay
but I’m not expecting it
or counting on it
so it’s not bad
whatever I get
because the time has been right
if not exactly on my side

Salary Lick

July 12, 2013

around the rifle swings
pop-eyed, terrified
frightened man
scared of being scared
admitting the fear
macho, trained
big and brave
raised in masculinity’s narrow straits
straight and narrow
tough guy
small fry
never exposed as otherwise
a cock enormous
hiding holes no mouse
you’re a self-assured
mighty male specimen
never to be confused
with elitist gentlemen
of girlier persuasions
to which you shan’t transform
for it is sure apostasy
to go against the norm
in god you trust
in cunt you thrust
from dust to dust
on the battlefield rust
your metal is nothing to water and salt