Saturday, March 13, 2004

Monday, March 8, 2004

A man walks his dog but the dog holds the leash between bottom and upper rows of teeth that know chew toys and biscuits as distinct from the rest of the world contained on these few blocks to the park.

The man lights a cigarette and drops the match in front of the swings at the playground where he sits on a bench, waiting for his dog to find a favored spot to remember in later days when it might be a kingdom for a friendly scent when there is only barking from behind the fences the two of them pass gong to and from the store or some such place near home.

This winter the sun is caught in the bare branches of trees that have surrendered their leaves to the season, the light of the sun is cold on the breath, man walks dog in jerky steps, the dog raises his head and growls, drops the leash from his teeth, a car passes by and a dog in the back seat has head sticking out of the window, yelping against the wind the envelopes his face in a perfect wrap of jet streams pinning his ears to the back of his head,

The man's dog runs after the car, barking and baying along the street lined with snowdrifts and grey, runneld slush, gone into the cold, leash less in the cold gasping for the man's hand and the leash he swings like lariat catching cattle the size of boxcars.
russell at claire de lune

applause or the lack of it drives him further into the corner, sinks him deeper into the chair, the cushion springs sing eternal groans as every song he tries to hum comes unstrung and tuneless as every set of lips on each beautiful mouth chats away at every table as though he weren't there with his tattoos and high heels, banjos and dobro guitars around his feet, twelve strings of nothing to say swarming about him as he sulks over the grinding beans and cash register ka-chings!, a spooked avenue flashes on the other side the window as bottle bar slides down slack key frets, headlights swarm over art deco marquees bragging of fabric sales and homecoming days, there's a slight glance of a pusher looking through the window, spitting on the sidewalk, he walks on, side streets go deep into the dark where street lights cannot pierce groves of trees around school yards and bungalows, our singer croaks, snake tattoos run up from his wrist and up his sleeve, emerge at his neck where veins look as though they'll pop on his next high note, books are stacked on the tables in front of him, the student raises her head from a note book she she writes in to drum her lip with the tip of her pen, she returns to her writing, no music will sway her, no applause will console him, a shadow falls over the stage, a stage light as burned out, cups and dishes on empty tables, there are instruments to pack up and trash cans to empty, there is no one to talk to, and thank god for that...

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MSN Slate Magazine

What people say are that people aren't good for a laugh or a loan.The air was cold from mountain winds, Santa Clause's flight exploded over the city,the homeless ate venison cooked over oil drum grills,every fire place was clean the following morning.I sleep in chairs my father gave me in a room my mother appointed as the Dream Cathedral.

Armies laid down their guns and abandoned their tanks,there was all the cash in the world to buy every cure there was a disease invented for, heir trees, good jobs, paid vacations to lands where literature couldn't find them.Roads in your city run close to your living room window,headlights spin off the wall as you watch news, eating popcorn from plastic bowls,tonight it's a Starsky and Hutch marathon, and there's no telling from the library where your amusements ends and the word on the street begins. There are picnic tables and handball courts that might have names on them in memory of some kid who lingered too long at the traffic light when it was his turn to cross.

A water tower looms over the park,tossing a shadow even at night, under the moon that spotlights the rooftops. Tires squeal in the distance, and then a blast of siren. Silence then, a park stalled under lunar sheen. A match is struck in the front seat of a parked car, a cigarette is lit,and the engine starts up. Popping sounds.

Someone starts a fire in a backyard on an improvised appliance.

"Nice oil drum" a kid says, warming his hands, "got any shit?"