Sunday, October 31, 2010


I was born made of the dust, always thinking like fire. The matter so foreboding, the nature so restrained. Seeing the world only as fuel and what I had to burn. Forgetting everything but the means. Learning that making it weather is never the same as having it made. The rain falling so insistently on my own flushed flesh. Just that weight of breath. Just every story ever told wrong before.

The times I feel I finished, the draw of punctuation in slick syllable, the changing of once to was. The times I keep trying to find the end of this sentence, favoring the coin toss of warden to jailed. That flavor just failing to find its saving, the mind so hopelessly remote. The lights are on only to heat the building. The lights burn bright just to show they can.

I thought that I could explain the change. Today, beneath the rain and crows, watching the confusion of release coil and dissipate into the glittering sky. Each word just a thirst rising before the flesh is awake, the shuffled half-dreamt emotions fleeing like curtains wanting each encore. I would spell it out, down to the last letter. Another post as law waits down the corner. Another word, as the fire goes out.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

the rejection of the rind

I settle for that little satisfaction, these horn-rimmed koans that I wish I could dismiss. The weight of light, the curl of smoke, the way the shadows always get so tangled in your hair. The secret signal, that urge of the future to find its way here. Stilted repetitions of dull virtuosity, the inevitable bitterness of the rejection of the rind.

It is breath by breath, this late, this far away. Your hip close to my shoulder so many slippery hours ago. Your voice so like the beginning of something never known before. That unfettered burning, that one thought worn clean through. Now electric incandescence. Now the blues singing and the restless pets. Only walls and words await.

This is where I find my midnight. This is where my new day begins. The petty business of false accounting and weathered standards. The troubled certainty that I was next to right. I was very nearly there, you beside me, abiding that uncertain spin. The action adrift right there between us, right as all opportunity recedes.

Friday, October 29, 2010

the phrasing of the moon

I often mistake my feelings for someone else's. This happens all the time. I bleed out into the world around me, and the mirror lingers in every detail. The lonesome streets, the bitter moon. These episodes are always cliffhangers. Each mistake means more to follow.

This is the trouble with navigation. This is the problem with leaving the gleanings of the native tongue. The sneeze needs a blessing, the tree needs an axe. We are so habituated to our own certainties that we forget we navigate through a fog of everyone else's. We think we know because we forget ourselves, all broad words and convenient overlookings. We paint landscape after landscape, staring into our own eyes.

It is true I stain the world with my feelings. It is true most of the sagas I endure are all my steam and fume. I have so long been the bull in the china shop, I can tell what I have broken just by the feel of that twitch of tail. I fill out the forms, draw pretty pictures in the margins. I detail the draw of ache I paint through my day, and seed a thousand unruly errors. It is the moon in the lake longing for embrace, that particular familiar phrasing. That blues that always follows, trailing smoke and flame.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

that space between

I had already stared too long. Eyes weary, past closing, past sleep. Not so much tears as the feeling of crying. Not so much witness as the end of looking away. That sun that hides and seeks. The air full of flocks and spider silk, that distance between today and the rain to come.

I was done before, and am finished now. Strange how it still seems to continue, the failings and the dread. Strange how it just won't stop, not until that last expected breath. My hands cracked, my pockets empty. The porch cluttered with toys and leaves. Everything left is about the weather. Everything left is about fleeing the static down the dial.

When it goes, it happens in a flash. The wrenched orchestra of metal meeting its limitations. That slap stick blow to the head suddenly less funny and further bled. The shot you never hear, the bolt out of the blue. Nothing left, so you move in circles. Nothing left, so you leave the compass out to rust. The song ends, the stylus left sweeping the streets. I had to close my eyes.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


The heart's busy chambers fill and empty, the weather always coming on. Dazzling wings and lingering strangers. The touch that is always aching to brush by, the sky full of borrowed breaths. I could leave it all to that calendar reasoning. I could leave it all in moldering witness to God's departure, these days that clutter up a past. The kisses so profound they never really happened. They appear there one moment, to vanish into debt and bravado the next. The blood always rushing towards the sky.

The travel comes in gaps and erratum, notes jotted in the margins of the morning paper, scars earned in the darkest depths of childhood. All these aches and measures, salt on the lips, a flag on the moon. That brilliant ocean, those rising departures. You write it down in haste and pity. You write it down until the telling itself is the reason for all these lesions. Far only mattering until you get there, that place where every meaning shifts.

There once was a bird, there once were wings in flight. The rain rolled in, the sky thick and gray. The rain came down, beating down the webs. Stuck in the storm, weighed down and hollowed by hunger, it waited in the sweeping of tall trees. It sleeps just before sleep's rude awakening. It waits for the day that will dream. I would say something, but that might wake it. I still myself, life shivering in the open air.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


You tire of trying to find a way, tire of it long before the road winds down. Tire of it long after the map is folded away wrong, creased and crumpled, lost to the tide of seeking and the crawling clock. It isn't as if you can't see the path. It isn't as if you don't know the way. Eventually all this wander wears thin, and there are no endings available worth wanting. Too many clues, and just a few missing pieces. You wind up strung up on a pole. You end up hanging from a tree, asking why.

So my work is the land of damaged children, nestling horror stories behind child's eyes, carrying tiny hells within their hearts. You get the shards and a name, some hints and whispers written in dry clinical hands. You get the idea in short hand, are handed a life, and told to try to keep each shard together. Keep them safe, teach them well. Take their tears and their furies, mitigate what damage you may. Every day I show up and fail someone in some small way. Every day I show up and resist the tide that will not slow.

There is no limit to human frailty. Every individual struggle may only end one way. Life plays out in the bigger picture, it plays out in the percentages. Life makes millions of omelettes, but it breaks trillions of eggs. A few of us are bound to be on the losing end ahead of schedule. Some of us have used up what little luck we had left. I was done years ago, and still I linger. There are countless wonders just out of reach, marvels wept for and witnessed in glee. But there is another bleeding gash in my leg, put there by a child for little reason at all. There is no wonder in sight, save that tomorrow I will show up and endure another thankless day without any way in sight.

Monday, October 25, 2010


There is the leaving of the flocks, the stunning glaze of that last light burning. There is the staggered traffic, wanton and intent. There is the radio static, every voice a little crisp around the edges. There is the drive and the distance, and hours lost filling in the empty space around someone else's life. There is that fleeting fire, some stranger lit from within. Steady is the gap, change is the flow.

Nothing comes of it. The work and the time and the lives that just get bruised and worn. The voices that rise through the midnight walls, that bitter distinction between here and there. The ebbing moon so soon descending, the calendar a blur in the air. Piled leaves and buried feathers. The letters never written to be lost. The words no-one wanted to say.

I stay the course where no-one wants me, need and fear winning the day. I endure the blunt, abide the sharp. I bear vitriol and abuse, waiting out the stupid brutal facts. The day that burns, the day that dwindles. I am a shadow cast on the skin of the moment. I am the smoke of a fire that has long since burnt to ash. I am words over words, the slip of the tongue. I am the weather that passes gently as you dream. I am the bruises left buried in your bones.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


To see you is always a revelation, even when my eyes are mistaken. That mimicry every distant glimpse seems to cling to, when I raise my eyelids and stare. That shine that calls me, a bare shoulder, a hip sway, that vision more persuasive than the world. Called to bear witness of my own corners and alleys, all this wandering to find out the way. Knowing even my missing finds its way your truth.

The night slows, trickling its delicate fingers through the remnants of light, clinging to the trees, coloring around the moon. Each branch and limb dancing with the wind, leaf clotting the earth bellow. Are you asleep or are you singing? I think that is always the song. No more radio poets, crackling beneath the sheets of your youth. No more recitations, spells and recipes always so much clamor just to miss the point.

It seems more a dream than a definition, this wavering touch, this fleeting certainty. Some scraping of the sky, some trembling in hope. Some lighting of fires that will never warm, lights that will not give sight or release. I can only watch and listen. I can only trust that my eyes will find you, however dark the stars. I can only hope that when I call you, you will turn without a doubt.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

ecstatic pessimism

You once knew me the way a weapon knows its war. The way a cigar knows its fire, the way the light always shivers and the night always endures. Or maybe I have it the wrong way around. The news always busiest once the world is ruined. The longing always only the measuring of the map. It loses me either way. The moon leans in and asks for a kiss.

The deal is done. The word is out. I am written down as far as it goes. I am where ever my tongue would free me. I am as much as a book, bound to these leavings. The earnest sacrifice of the ash. The whispering that makes listening so precarious. The reason that is always made into alibi.

The possible is only there long enough to clear up the nagging differences, the limits that let us find out our way back home. It is the convincing litany, the innocence of the forbidden fruit devoured for just hunger. The clarity of separation of doubt from need. You are that furthest of wishes, lit only so I can find how far want is. Distant only as a word wants from feeling, pressed like a delicate kiss barely breathed upon your throat. Known only in how the road went wrong.

Friday, October 22, 2010


The rain hesitates, and the gray descends, thick with brush work, streaked with light. The roads rewind as expected, brakes and gas, fluid stillness and unchecked feeling. It is all about where color leaves. It is always beginning in these furtive breaths and dismal stretches. Words scribbled on the back of my hand. Rain spattering the view, glass and metal and hours left of light.

I seem invisible in the well lit places, shambling between elbows and ignored bounds. Every eye I meet is locked in some distant permutation. Every face I see is seeing something else. I ease and sweep, avoiding the most intent of collisions. I wonder at the vacancies I carry, at all the space I somehow fail to fill. Lines of ill-mannered strangers all talking towards invisible ends.

The first lush sprinkles touch down in the parking lot, where people plod and bolt. I slow at that first fresh mist, that dense collusion of air and water. I stride through that delicate grace, that ordinary blessing of weather. I watch people rush and crows glide, I watch the traffic and my step. Every story I tell comes out in knots and circles. I ghost through the details, elaborate and mistaken. I lose each belief as everything grinds down into prayer.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

closer still

I meant it all, as if I was adrift upon some midnight ocean, feeling as if I was falling into the stars. I meant it all, as I the words finally failed at leading me astray. The bare perspective of so much water, the rain that falls so soft, the light that only barely brushes past. In how that shine would seem to pool and gather, caught tense between so much sky and flesh. The least of touch, forever dissembling.

Then the air that cling about you, that slipped poetry of perfume and evidence. The breath and all that breathing shaping the guess. Cards folded before the dealing was done. Every sense gaffed and marked, the want of it always leading the way. That wind swept bereft that holds you close, the scent of a memory melting away. Sweat and chemicals and friction, the perfect composition of heavy and forget.

If it would help, I would lean into it. Put my shoulder to these fleeting notions, put my back to these ardent designs. I would push past this hesitance, pull down the decorations and the signs. The meat and bone insistence of these sweet deceptions. The radio waves and the tuner crackling together, generalizing out a signal. The work of the world wrenched from its procrastinations, life and thought at last on the mend. I check my grip and inspect the losses. I keep it closer still. I keep hold.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

glass houses

There is a look tethered to a blush, a whispering of blood, a lingering of heat. Eyes fixed on the transience of skin, bright and unyielding. A gaze always falling into that remembered edge, that certain light that finds you, awake and aware. With the speed of a shadow, with the sentiments of every shark, there you are shining at the means of each eye. It is the world's work to find you you tell me. It is the burning buried inside of every flame.

I wrote it down too long after. I realized it just as every name had changed. Something about the least misfeasance only either charm or scheme. The way the rules always want so badly to write themselves. That furtive dusk, that star by rote. The poem in it always lifted by your lips, shaping every breath to exhaustion.

It is sad the way you can always tell my fortune, knowing my sins by the era of their commission. Knowing my meaning besides the mistakes. I wait for your expense accounting, I wait for your syllabary of empty boots. The longing left in all your discarded paraphernalia, those sheer disguises, that plainest of looks. You can read me in scraps and remnants. So much effort demolished as afterthought. So much anguish left in knowing how far I could miss.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

the difference

The empty sky is suddenly at capacity, a single distant bird sailing, black across so much blue. Sun is exchanged for silhouette, matter swapped for shadow. We move and toil, pretending that such things are not so. How to take the work of the world when we are so close to the edges. How to start again and again each day when we are buried in the tailings, treading these bitter ends. You are near, then you are gone. I reach out to find the answer. Every equation is tinged with want.

I can feel the bones shift in the mechanics of my stride. I can see cup half empty and the clock on the wall. Something shifts, subtle and without mercy. Something shifts, and the rest is anticlimax. The story can't be the story until it finds its bounds. The trouble is the telling, the mistakes made when we make up placeholders for our own beginnings and ends. It is the shape of prayer, that cold slap in the face feeling of revealed truth. The sun pushes a shadow out from my cumbersome obsolescence. The earth is painted in the light I slow.

There is the story that began with the sea. There is the story that ends in the stones and waves. Traces filling, indifferent to the sky or water. Notions changing with the boundaries of the world. Wings glide by, so far, so wide, so free. Always that reaching one thing that changes places with another. Always this thinking that can only perform acts of subtraction as addition in reverse. I can only see you in imagined light, keeping company with a candle or the moon. I can only see you after I am taken away, far from the frame of remembrance. A trick of focus, knowledge gained from the application of books and maps to the ragged awful geography of the heart. Something too beautiful to catch up close. Something too precious to ever be real at all.

Monday, October 18, 2010


I get home, and I might as well have driven into a ditch. I make the drive home, the right bracket hung on an empty set. It is the breadth of repetition, the enduring retention of human behavior. It is the grooves worn into souls, tethers tied to other times in knotted barbed wire. Every movement is perilous. Every feeling is in danger of being drowned in blood.

Last Friday I took the slow road home, idling in parking lots, browsing in the aisles of crowded stores. The last length crawled, stop and go for half an hour, until we reached the fire engine in the fast lane, dealing with the smoky fire in the middle of the freeway median. I listened to songs I had heard dozens of times, singing along. I had nowhere to be, no-one waiting. Late didn't have a definition outside of my expectations. I could loiter almost anywhere I was.

A kid kicks the bathroom door off the hinges, wanders the grounds in furious tears. I tag along, trailing his wake. I talk a little, watching to see where to contain all this angry feeling. He talks down slow, too lit on adrenaline to hear or speak. I lay out the hard facts, guiding him towards where he needs to be. He pays the price for what he has done, and pays more for those hard lessons he learned from the failings of others. He agrees to be safe, to work on his program, to think about the world past these spats and frustrations. I wonder a little as I leave what my failings will teach him. I wonder what anyone will learn.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


You touch the points of the farthest star yet settled, name nestled on the tip of your tongue. You nuzzle the subtle change in the temperature of the air, one step down out the house and into the night. It is this reach, this press I ache after. Each and every day awaits, the last lingering in the company of the pack. Each and every bruise blooms, none of them yours.

This is the false witness, the way the hour lolls and the air shames. That heat of blush, the rushing witness of so much blood. Bare flesh and distant winds. The physical witness of flustered sheets and television light to guide you. That cage tight around your heart, the density of darkness staring back, clasping each instant between breaths. The echo finding its way back to you, the strange weight of your own voice in the night. Alone seethes upon the kitchen tile. Alone the brush of some other myth leaving for good.

You radiate in the quiet of this moment, your image incandescent, that thrill of willing light. You settle beneath the bed of dreaming, you settle beneath the reckless bets of faith. That intimacy of the dearly imagined, that notion just close enough to miss. Your eyes, open in some unlit mendicancy, that weary admission of wait. Thinking I could be so near. Thinking some invention laden with patent ache could be true. That native tense of reach and soar, your hand enfolded in mine.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

smoke gets in your eyes

It seems as if autumn finds its balance, blue sky and the lilt of dying leaf. The trees sway, sweeping the clouds, clinging to the indifference of the wind. The skittering litter of the season dancing in the empty street. Traffic passes, rendering the detritus into dust. Hissing tires and weary asphalt. The slow incitement ever gazing upward. Every day finding a new low.

The weather obscures the words. The feel of the chill, the condensings of breath finding flesh, the distinction of color and the puzzle of perspective. Every sense an exclamation, every line stolen from another map of the world. I speak in the immensities that language allows, excesses of will and of time, the deep ache, the enduring flame. It sings of all the shapes passion grants a wanting tongue. The songs unfurl again and again, your skin mingling with this absent aim.

So it sails across farther waters, the secret oblivion that life has endowed our needs. So it crosses frozen waste and lush canopy, so it burrows through earth and stone. I say forever, speaking in antithesis. I say love, speaking from the same page you read aloud before. There are no such symptoms, no evidence found at large in the restless world. Everything dust and everything burning. This shine I can only hope for, crying out loud to you.

Friday, October 15, 2010


I am less than the song stuck in your head, always on the edge of slipping away. I am further than the brickwork beneath the dusty mantle, full of trophies and memories. Written in the gaps, the apertures adjusting for the waning day, the doors locking against the unknown night. I am captured in the flash bulb and the rear view mirror, locked in odd documentation and circumstantial evidence. This map work of bruises, the strange turn gentle must make to wrest the works of the brutal from lost souls. These kisses cleaved from all but the most hopeless dreams of love.

I swallow the fire, I breathe out smoke. The wind has its way with it all. I am the insistence of measurement, the rapture of the prize unclaimed. More than that mixture of ghost and blood, more than the fever dreams and wasteful eyes that stare and stare. Wings clipped, horns ground down to mere longings, I pace and I stagger. I watch my mind make mistakes from the constellations. I watch as all the lights go down.

There is a beauty that is beside us. There is a temper that makes the soul of the autumn reeds stronger than steel. I am a muddle of longing and slipped tongues, the busy work of hands that will not keep to themselves. All these hungers and petty alarms, all the waste of will and want. The night is a tide that is always rising, the day the droll ravenings of the sun stuck beach. There is an ache that comes of the world working fine without. There is a relief bound to becoming obsolete. These wind swept vacancies, these star crowded crowns.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Count the candles, feel the heat. That portion of excess bound to a paper plate. That diligence of wishes given way to smoke and sweetness. A tide of fire extinguished, smoke curling into a haze of fitful tradition. Such a measure, such a moment. Plastic forks lining the trash-can. Blue frosting smearing the sink.

It is the ritual we name, but the sweetness we need. All these muttered grievances, all these longed for treats. The hours of repetition, the blunt language, the idle threats. Time cards signed in pure frustration, checks cashed in needy resentment. These little parties to delay the inevitable. These petty indulgences to make up for lapsed sin.

There are always disappointments. There are always days that will let us down. The calendar marks our dreams for tomorrow. The bright light longed for, the journey at last underway. We take these small offerings, these silly substitutions. We reach for our share of the pie, hoping it will be a piece of cake. Something sweet and easy, a moment we can taste.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


We were translated from lost languages. We were written on brittle fire. The story just goes and goes. It is never clear what was said before the bets were settled. It is never certain just when that hammer fell. Our lives unwind from these strange entanglements. Our souls are only disappearing ink. The words all hiss and spark between.

There are strange engines at work, and far too many moving parts. The light outside dwindles, I turn on the lamp on the wall. I hear the pulse of strangers leavening the street with there shambling exhortations. I hear the song of some other's heart skipping like a stone. A baby squeals, a motor turns over, there are mosquitoes pestering the peelings of the moon. The night slowly fills all the waiting spaces. The song finds a place to roost.

I only know the distance, never the measure. I only know the lifting, never the weight. Clocks scratch away the seconds, forgetting the first time for everything there is. Lights offer us up to the eyes of the night. I can only make out the broad strokes, never the subtleties that lead you there. I can only know how things seem from this end. We were written, now there's no telling. We were meant once, and now are our only means left.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


The sun won't stay, and I can't call it back. The night won't still, and I can't keep up. The smoke unfurled from distant fires, the speed of the tire multiplied outward from the hub, the spattered windshield cracked all of the sudden. From gravel in action to the plaintive note from a passing train, it all goes on and on. I steady myself in the doorway. I ease myself down step by step. Wonders truly never cease.

The light isn't any good for reading, and the room is too hot for finding any sleep. The dog dozes just outside the doorway, painted with a single stripe of light. The cat in the closet is all thistle and growl. My feet ache, bare on the worn out floor. My shoes air, settling with the spiders on the porch. The leaves are falling, the lawn is dying, I never seem to finish with these lists of failings. Bones crackle, a different kindling, awaiting some other kind of fire.

Pretty is for people while beauty stalks the earth. It is bright and ragged, sharp and swift. It is a feeling that wanders while all the mirrors run dry. It is a knowing that drops angels from flight like cutlery clattering to the floor. The world and its hordes and swarms, designed by mystery or by chance. Working at these puzzles, lapping at these ruins. Such a sweet tooth for cinders, such a drizzling of sweat. I lean into this long weary, stunned by this careless beauty that is always just out of reach.

Monday, October 11, 2010


The lullaby arrives at unseemly moments, amid the freeway glare at 75 miles per hour, as you wait in the parking lot feeling that hot wind seep through the open window. It sings along to the sound of tires dissolving against tarmac, it sings with the air conditioning rattle, with the hum of bass-swept glass. You long just to close your eyes and listen, but you aren't free to fall. You long to lay down your head just for a few short moments, but this time is not your own. You would slip into sleep, into those sweet dismal sacrifices where the world is lost as you mingle with dreams. You would sleep deeply, and disappear at last.

You awake to the shock of dreams lost at once, without trace or remembrance, the whole world rushing in. There is no slow roll, no subtle exposition. The change is more lift than tense. The change is more exorcism than operation. The sky still dark, the stars still bright, the litter of leaf and twig half hiding the morning paper. Lost gods and revealed constellations, no consolation for the life that is missing pieces, that life that is mostly the spaces where the revel ought to fit. Another day of drying tears and the tide of traffic. Coffee in a paper cup, the cut out feeling of the suspended weight of the moon.

The freeway was painted in taillights and gusts of dust and litter. The whole world just swayed on a wire. The whole world went out of its way to never say your name. There aren't surprises, just the familiar things you had never before witnessed. There aren't miracles, just the mirror in your head bending the light just so. You couldn't find the rhyme even if you ever had a reason. You couldn't read the signs even if any one ever asked the way. You will sleep and you will wake. The road is the only border you can know.

Sunday, October 10, 2010


Things manifest in their particulars, instants skinning maps and figures, all the exclusionary conditions coming along with the package. This is here, that is there, look at how far away we must search these similes. These strings of alibis, these reasons to cling and concur. It is emptiness that gathers, so much vacancy that brings it all rushing in. I can never get my bearings, mornings so quick and certain.

The day already escapes, waking so late and so poorly. The words are there without warning, somehow I am missing my lines. Somehow I am always off script and out of character. One scene lingers, one raises a ruckus. I yawn and try to gather my remnants. I breath a little deeper, as if all I had could ever be enough.

It is all rhyme and residue, all art and ache. Smoke soaked clothes, tooth ache frames the light in the eyes, itch and scratch always threading their prayers of flesh and feeling. The slipped punch of awareness, the evasion meaning more than the attack. That sickness that writhes through the core of being, that sickness that assails and assumes. These small mementos, these graceless souvenirs. A message in a bottle lost in the tides of this restless heart. A distinction only hatred can resolve.

Saturday, October 9, 2010


I would walk away only to scatter these ashes that cling to my feet, that mingle with the dust. I would bend my bearings only to find that all the stars have strayed. The fence line and the wind break, the phone poles and the broad horizon. All these sleepless windows, lit well into the night of this next day. All these lonesome notions, walking in the dark.

The machines all scratch and clamor, the clock on the wall leaving marks in the flesh of time. Listen to the hum of glass, the pause of the open doorway. Listen to the breath wheeze, full of bolts and wire. I clear my throat, feel the weight of the empty room. Thirst and awakening, the dim residuals of spent dreams. I drink cold water from a plastic cup, the ice only a memory. I swallow the water, take on the color of unlit walls. Every hour burned through these wires. Every day another ravening of the flesh.

The sound of a spoon stirring, hot water steeping dry leaf. Sugar dissolved in heat and chemistry. Simple recipes for ancient ablutions. Steam and heat another answer for the darkened glass. Windows full of moths and shadow. The day so far from home, every comfort sized to travel. The night so resolute in may only be crossed on foot.

Friday, October 8, 2010


All the words drown slowly, caught in the breadth of this reading, ash the only evidence left. You are a far tide, a rhythm of solemn resignation honoring the knowing that all the facts wear away. Such facts of heat and wax, blood languorous on bitten lips, every burning branch mere parlor tricks. You cough some small remission, a confession to your secret exultation of meaningful error. The old song suddenly clattering softly to the deadpan floor.

I watch some star wander in the illusion of this steady life. I watch the street lights slowly exist in the periphery. I acknowledge these blasphemes and this obsessions, my own aim always a little off-color, clinging just too far below the belt. I think of you, as if such a thought could hurt. I think of you as the sparkle just as the smoke devours, that value laden passage. I imagine all these flags that unfurl within your skin, that nationality of self that you imbue only when the wind finds everything that bends. I watch the night pursue every last shine.

I can only imagine you as I whisper. I can only dream of you in this hush of breath and ache. It is in this touch where I know I can't find you, this distance only real while you are hidden. It is in the hour lost before the bad analogue of time's sands like snow, piling deep and dissolved with the least reckoning of the sun. The way some of us can only lose in stories, explaining away every fault as fate. The way there is no resolution to these ashen passions. The idea everything taken away.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

the golden mean

Light bends, time crawls, the sky is held together with wires strung above the freeway, stretching past sight. Miles of metal creep and stall, creep and stall. Gaps open between vehicles, whole worlds gape and yawn. Another driver fills the difference. Diesel fumes and brake-lights abound. Traffic pauses because everyone only wishes to get ahead.

I am made of mistaken measures, of cautions crossed with liberties, of stench and a glimmer of dumb hope. The days push and lean, buffeting the words about. I lull beneath the tower made of haunted children and aimless violence. The skin I wear bears the mark of the dupe, the tension of the uninvited clown. The brutal endures, the nights blur and burn. Ashes everywhere left to breathe.

Too many cars and too many hours. Too much wear and never enough rest. The scars map these rough dismissals, the time machine of the never resting mind. Once was seems to be forever, captured in just the right light. Once was is a promise of what possibility allows. A head turns away from the glare of the sun. A face framed in distance, unbearably beautiful. The brake-lights fade and the beauty is lost. Some small portion, hidden in the folds of this feeling. Some stifled burden, blooming as it dies.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

false idyll

There is a blue press to this scattered sky, a shine made of glass and water, a color straight from a box of crayons. There is a beauty that hangs heavy from every bough, wire, and head. Squirrels gnaw at remaindered walnuts, leaving jagged meat and husk. Shards that make the impression of constellations, dots and stars cut into bare flesh. A worm writhes up through the surface, devouring its way through the world.

The promises screamed are bound to be broken. They are riven from the inside, rotted from the root. All the words spat out tainted with poison, a heart all but drowned in a short lifetime of daily cruelty. The only truth known written in break and bruises. The only truth bound wrong before it had a chance to be free. We contain the violence still burning in these wild bones, the perpetrator nowhere to be seen. We mark the border lands where almost everyone looks away.

I carry home the cuts and bruises. I carry the mark of some deep and buried crime. Empty shells like wooden knives littering the grass. The rock-like impact of a half a dozen nuts missed by squirrel, weaponized by a seething sickness that wears the skin of a little lost boy. The trees sway, scraping away at the heavens. The wind writes its stories in the stretch of sky and the sweep of fall. Beneath each labor, an ancient chain of error. Beneath each calm, a struggle.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

hand made

The long line of coincidence lays in ashes, embers lingering like the stars. The mystery of a heart that empties is something always comes rushing in. The fold in the letter, the crease on the curb. That emblem of something missed laying strewn across the lawn. I scratch and scrape another new life. I idle in the shower, the river all around.

There is a touch that always ends with loving. There is a song that always ends inside out. That notion of a needle sharp enough to pierce a voice. That idea of an arrow, falling towards inevitable harm. The nights last so much longer, the burden leaving fingerprints across the deluge only dreamt. The spell that always goes back to the start.

I lean hard into this drowning picture, feeling that want and that ruin. I lean into a willed burned past, as if this motion could ever uncover this breath. You are that gentle violence of light, filling my eyes with sharpened sand. You are that perfect murder of a flower held tight though it is cut. That weight always just leaving my fingers. That scent always purposeful and burning. The empty lot lit sudden, all beauty is fire.

Monday, October 4, 2010

double negative

There is some bend left in the bones, some press of cells left before there are splinters and tears. There is some sky left of the silty turns of flags and failings. The scratched lenses can not give away the center of the secrets. The dull tongue can not find a way to sing that bitter line so sweetly in the rumor laden air. There is a breath waiting to be taken. There is a story never to be told.

Grace occurs to us so profoundly in its absence. Heaven hovering over whatever the worst of the world. Brittle remnants and castles crafted from damp sand. The bridle lie and the buffeted kite. The reach that the grasp can not manage. The furthest stretch outside the evidence somehow assures that there is no need for proof.

My knees are dappled with cuts and bruises. My eyes are slow and dim. The hour presses its nose against the window. The hour is always looking over its shoulder, trying to see inside. I am a dumb dead thing, only alive in opposition. I am a knot of curses, a crush of betrayals. I am a list of words that never ends soon enough.

Sunday, October 3, 2010


What ease is there in the ache, seeing that remembered symbol, that bloom of what will be again. What comfort in the eyes finding that skyline, a darkness bereft of stars. That mumbled poetry, that certainty that poverty can only evoke. That sense of architecture always meant to be. Scratching after my beard, the absence the only bend left any pleasure. The nerves plugged into some socketed incandescence, a reckoning pure and eternal.

All the reason left are for searching the skylines, our feet long ago tricked into feeling always the solid ground down to the bone. We beg the horizons to find that difference we clearly lack. The best predator always being a joyful solemnity in being sure that it is the only one hunted. Knowing how to read making the part of it in writing only that much more so. That plan that escapes notice is still always just a plan.

So we will always find a way to call down the lightning. Always aware that invention is only so many more names for sin. Our skin seeps symbols, inked in the due course of natural fire. Burning always that one fleeting shape, branded to mark the stitches of arrival. Burning only another way to pass the time. Evidence is all that is left.

Saturday, October 2, 2010


It is the instrument that fools us, staring first into that bright bottomless pool of blue. The tide changes, dragging patches of cloud and colors we can not quite know. This is the way we sail, each stare aiming at heaven, each sigh capturing the wind. It is a drawling dissolution, that textbook swap of states. Witnessed, we each evaporate. This is all our tools might do.

There is a rapture of wings just at dusk, a change in the feeling rent from distant flight, a balance between hope and fade. Feathers spread to their well-founded limits, the agitation trapped in the atmosphere doing all the work. The world empties and tightens all around, vapor and smoke honoring the existence of ash. Flecks and shavings billet in the restlessness that always abides. I try to remember the words I wanted first. I try to find the soul of that flight before the known.

I am a totem of aimless burdens, a shifting of some subtlety of fluids and weights. I am a bulk ladening the purpose of this chair. I type the slow preamble, I take every vow I know. That form that takes what shape is owed it, the cage of each aware disclosure. Breath tumbles down the vague decline, the consent lent to every earnest whim. Reading everything into the margins, the artless solemnity of these gusts and mistakes. Something beautiful stolen, as if that was the only gift.

Friday, October 1, 2010

wrecking ball

The stars are always falling, the leaves are turning brown. The sky is clipped and dismembered, that song that will mean so much more once it is forgotten for awhile. Always scratching after memories, always mythologizing that relentless itch. Post cards and poor performance. The dismal ringing of salutary bells, the statuary so humble and fine. The inference is lifted like fingerprints pulled by tape. A night littered with glass, a heart ringed with exhumed teeth. These kisses are all the same.

You wouldn't know me standing up straight. You wouldn't want to hold me if ever I could hold my own. The gaps in the memory gape, a skeleton's grin. That death's head certainty that the joke is there, regardless of who is left laughing. That stoic mask you wear, knowing that your world will end. Folded letters and loaded phrases, a dozen gimmicked decks all leading to the same sorry trick. All the labor made from this weak dissembly, the burden of filling up the empty with whatever magic you might make. It seems too simple to be true.

The path is dim, though it takes no thought to follow. The way is mangled by these slips and aphorisms. The cage built of words as sturdy as the one built of the bones of birds. Something eases, something is given. The tide is only the dancing of gravitation, an amusement made of tangled orbits and the shiftlessness of water and salt. The pretty little picture, the moment where the water bird pass so high in the sky. The song begins unwinding, and everything is ready to leave. Nothing is wrong, just the lingering ache of living. Nothing is bad, just the startling absence of that enduring love.