A mad hatter with a hat on. A man-made heaven. A three syllabled paradise. Man-hatt-an. A Lego square with intestines and glowing lights. A mecca. A melting pot. A miasma. A jungle book of noise. A city of drama and dreams. A salute, a nod, a handshake to mankind. An applause. A bow. A silver smile.
I should spend every moment kissing you.
For all the times I couldn’t,
for all the nights I spent tossing and turning
wishing for nothing more
than the scent of you beside me,
and the freedom to kiss your temple
while you slept, unaware of the roiling
and growing and burning of my love
and my longing.
crack open the ribs
like the plastic cover
for your newest toy.
discard the things inside
you don’t need; instructions
and warranty, first.
enjoy until you grow tired
of its limits and downfalls and
quirks, then discard.
When the agony of breathing
usurps the treacherous pleasure
of your tongue grazing mine,
I’ll know I’ve been dreaming all along.
there are a hundred people
making love and war in my head;
all of them demanding attention,
all of them claiming a right to
this body I inhabit, claiming
they were the one meant
to move these limbs and pull
the levers and sift through
the jumble of thoughts
left behind from
a hundred different lives
lived before this one.
I once knew a girl with eyes that shone
like Venus on a clear night
and the sound of her voice
made crickets quiet down to listen.
But she was a flighty bird,
a burning-out star trapped
in our atmosphere, screaming
and dying to get out, to breathe in
space dust and toy with vortexes
and we were all too selfish
to recognize the gradual fading
I think about how you may have been a trigger
I never quite tripped.
You took me to the place
where your family buried your horses,
a wide patch of land surrounded by
dying trees and yellowed grass,
and we talked about things greater than ourselves
and we walked a little more.
I don’t think I would have loved you,
despite the kindness you s…[Read more]
the paint is peeling
in the corners,
the night hangs heavy,
a mouthful of molasses caught
in the back of my throat.
your absence fills the room
like cotton and I feel smothered
Cracks in the sidewalk have always made me feel vulnerable;
if concrete can crumble, what might be done to my fleshy little heart?
Today I feel off-balance;
my axis has shifted and I’m rotating around you
in reverse and though I’m not frightened
I am paralyzed with ineptitude when all I want
is to correct my course and return to your gravity.
My hair is longer now – much longer than you’d have liked,
it curls around my rib cage like ivy,
and I think of this now and again
when it gets stuck in the door of the car
or beneath his elbow while we’re sleeping,
and I don’t mind it and neither does he.
You would have,
it might have gotten in the way at some
critical juncture when our bodie…[Read more]
Tonight the rain came down in aggressive torrents,
battering against the windows as lightning caught fire
somewhere a few miles north. Still, we crawled out
onto the steps of the fire escape and smoked a joint,
letting the rain soak our pant-legs while we leaned back,
staring up at the sky only half obstructed by the overhang,
and collected all…[Read more]
At what point does being alive
ever coexist with our deepest expectations?
I’ve trudged through thus far,
at times up to my throat in the quicksand
of reality and the frailty of our souls and
the weight and agony of a battered mind.
I’ve pressed on when my bones quivered
and my heart stuttered and everything inside of me
screamed to be rel…[Read more]
I swallow back the non-articulable mess
of mis-representations of deeper seas; there are
oceans and oceans of things I’ve never said.
Trinkets of these wordless captives wash up on shore
after a storm ravages the fathomless beryl waters,
tiny little treasures you’ll never understand.
At night my heart cracks open
like your eggs in the morning
and everything I felt in the day
comes spilling out.
I never could break an egg quite right.
Outside I can hear late night traffic
and now and then headlights illuminate the wall
across from my window and I think quietly to myself
about the enigmas of other souls; of how
now matter how closely we know another, we do not really
know anything about the tiny thoughts in their minds
and the subtle shifts of mood – as distinct as the…[Read more]
I say we ditch this old-hat life
of scrimping and barely getting by
and living as if we’ll be twenty-something
until we die. Hop a barge and flee somewhere
with more culture to get lost in,
somewhere with an accent we can adopt
to amuse our friends back home.
When we’re too broke to buy a few pints
I’ll dive into the river and let the water take…[Read more]
I cried, once, when a girl at the grocery
smiled at me, her eyes full of unbridled kindness,
the kind you could only get from strangers
who’d never had to offer you their sympathies
or pick you up, drunk, wailing on the sidewalk at 3AM
because the only person who’d ever meant anything to you
had just left you, exposed and raw and sta…[Read more]