Aug 08

Attempts at Dancing

move glorious like a dancer, I think,
shuffling limbs in a cacophony of
left and east, from the ground up, 
swung off the cliff to Massachusetts.
music thundering my ears to movement,
limbs desperate to emulate the foolish 
beauty of song, failure to do so freeing
easy up, jitter-bugging down, side to side,
north to the mountain, snow blistering my bite.
I totter down the kitchen, socked feet squeaking,
coffee cake like sand crumbling in my mouth. 
Aug 08

Maine (3 PM on Monday)

Sun-bitten roads, squinted 
eyes between lapses of 
thought— the Free Masons 
meet each Monday at 
3 PM before the moon swings
shimmering, a loping cat’s eye with
quick battering feet. The 
jesters, the teachers, the scientists, the 
froggy teenagers with gap-toothed canyoned
grins— each plucked merciless-like by this 
mystic message of a road sign. All in 
love with a shovel to dig through dirt 
back to themselves— dazzling 
heaps of compost worms and
hair and leathery lobster shells. Endless cycle, 
endless Mainers like Prometheuses. In Maine— 
every man a Free Mason maniac with his pyramidal home 
of stitched brick and broken words and 
a mess of corpse-full 
tunnels below to spare. 
They’re thick as thieves, those ones. They 
huddle together, chapped lips and sun-hued 
teeth finding meanings of sorrow and 
need with communal idioms. Words ring out. 
Jul 06

Can this existence endure?

Buckle it up, wrap it in fingernails, and, of
Course, don’t forget to create it. Fold echoes of
Itself in stones that provoke but trace them in 
Swooping circles that surround. Swim it up and
Down in geometric cages, cages of thin, wrinkled
Iron. Let it kick them down. Let it wonder at them,
Finger at the metallic scraps feathering the earth, wind
Them through its fleshful body. Let it notice the echoes
You left it and make you up in its ineffectual orbicular
Being and let it, let it, let it peel existence itself from the
Walls the sky the floor the belief the uttered being. This existence 
Necessarily exists so let it— at the end, pry 
itself from its rusted self. And at the end, endure this
Existence down. 
Jun 18

Sitting Here, I'm

Cratered in time cradled
Despite infinite reverberations of
An action hewn and festering I’m 
not that library book the one I didn’t 
Return for a year the one I
Sowed in the backyard like hula-hoops
Buried in my ribs reeling my hands
Over soft skin plastic notches I’m not
That book I try to remember
what book it was whose
Name it bore when I’m gonna
dot Hades’ doorstep
with it in hand I’m
Finagling fear wracking my 
Neck skipping the sun on
The lake I’m carving back the
Skin fingering for hula-hoops
Square-dances folded
library books and the 
Quiet ripples of sinking
Beyond yesterday yet only
Peeling up craters and
oiled compass safari
Hat shovel skeleton of a past
Explorer consoled by a mute
Dance with death I
Kick his rot around flay the
book from his being I
Didn’t realize he held up
My ribs for so long.
Jun 15

Collecting Questions

why do clowns have
red noses and how are you

doing (I scrambled Risk for 
five, kicked hand-made
songs to the ceiling, tripped 
on scalding bouts of 
non-closure don’t you

see it’s gonna end) so 
let me stay, stay, stay 
when I move my blue troops to 
the Americas and I’ll
help you i’ll take a scythe and 
sungod your questions cry dirt into
your purple green plant find sleep on 
the stairs I’ll bring out the trash
on warm watery nights and augment black 

licorice twists butter-weary
bagels and never say a word
to you and how does
that sound how does wifi 
work and where are the
aliens and what if a snake
eats its tail and I’m spitting into the

sun playing Hercules like a
child but I still don’t know
why squirrels have large
tails and why’s the
Iliad called that 

anyway and so
answer me! cracking 
Jun 15

waiting for the new york god, I’m

machining my existence quietly arraying
grief beneath a box soldering my shadow to a nail whispering
soliloquies in my templed mind I’m

sounding a cat’s wail through this 
country’s turreted church and playing the silent
game feeling out shame till you slick New York one-dollar pizza
man come out of the fold of swaying pant legs and sitting
so funny like that— hey

come and get us absorbed back into the everyday
bright game you American god come and unscrew my
shadow settle into the nook we’ve carved for you Odysseus

of actors deliver us from the sticky 
imitations of the stage compare us to glorious 
muses come shatter our fried wires unexorcise

us you master! shake our 
leaves off our trees and obverse the ardent quiet of
death you greased pigeon
and deliver us!
Deliver us!
Deliver us!
Jun 14

Pearling Over Memories

Disconcerting
Disconnection— like time’s not 
Stringing together
Correctly and dusty
Leaves fall
Up instead of
Down. My sister’s carved a 
Space for herself in
The next room over and holding music
To her ear like a shell and I’m sitting 
Here, twisting my mind about
The second-hand
Tunes and pearling my rusted
Memories in a jar, peeling back some
Plaster and stuffing it between 
Two curtains of lived
Liminal spaces, watching time
Thunder past in its large pick-up
Truck and I’m going 
Back to small
Hearts and large eyes and spreading dry
Hands like trees and acting for the larger 
Ones because we can’t act for
ourselves, boxed in golden brilliant
Rooms and bright harsh living and the silent 
Shame of knowledge and attempting to
String together tiny
Moments to crack 
Open a narrative but finding 
Only nothings spoon-fed into 
Jun 13

Ode to the White Staircase

A magisterial staircase. White everything and
Wood trim and I only 
Went down it when
I needed to use the 
Bathroom and a little crevice I sat in
One time I was so 
Dehydrated I couldn’t
Walk 
Up
The
Stairs. And the cacophony
Heralding change through
The country— in the tourists of same-color
Shirts and the military men with sharp
Suits showing families
around. Sweaty armpits the
One time we graduated and
Stuffing my button-up
in my pants and pushing down
My mask for a second to take a
Breath in the muggy 
Airways of the Capitol and the
Clack-clack-clack of forever up and
Down and 
Pausing 
and peering down the
Always-geometry of this
Magisterial
staircase. 
 
Jun 13

For you

I’m a bit tired (philosophically 
speaking) but I’ll stay up for you. I’ll 
Stay up for the quiet hope and
Wheat hair and green, green, green of your
Snapshot existence. I’ll stay a little
While longer and fall
Deep into the patterns of
Interaction that somehow
Map every conversation with
You. I’ll stay up and stumble through the
Curtains of communal living and watch
A show with
you. I’m a bit tired but I’ll
Feel out the future and make some space
For you.
 
Jun 13

Returning Back Home

Same old existence and smell. Same
Shape in the bed and green of 
Everything. I wonder at the past— its old
Used photographs and spells, its mystical
Beginnings and even more unknowing 
End in me. Putting Patti
Smith on and wondering about wandering
Under the tin can and the glassy fruit and the
Corinthian, Ionic, Doric all lined up
In my head— perfect place and its
Contortions. Same feel and
Everything, same shape I carve into 
rooms. Same tired routines and
Steadfast dynamics of willing disappointment 
If it ever will come. Same carousel 
Talks and crawling roads and I’m bringing myself
Back 
Home. 

Pages