Monday, August 8, 2005

His Love for The World

Slate Magazine: "His Love for The World

After we bow
our heads
under the railroad cross
and crawl across
the stone mason's floor
and boundless black sand,

He will love
me just a little bit more
as I hold my breath,
lift my last sword
and thunder stick,
stab my palms with
quills to write home with,
He will love us all
as he would love a storm
that breaks every limb of tree
that smites the eye
that sees only lands
pure and white with sterility,

He will love us
then love us
all the more until

There is no more
skin to bruise cut
or otherwise rent
with the talking points
of our crusade,
no more flesh to humble
in piles of limbs
and heads saying
prayers that return
to the lips of
the doomed which say them,

Not until
the last flag
is laid over
the last box
and are no more hands
with fingers enough
to grip
and squeeze the trigger.


Sunday, August 7, 2005

Cloudless black tablature

(A cubist musing)

There is nothing that drink won’t fix
but the bars are closed on Sundays
so it’s holy water instead of vodka
we’ll soak our cam shafts in,

Yes, the library looks like a spinning top,

Regular posse mode gives broken disc
half chance to shred party dress with
flower vase shard and splatter guitar vexing
because every nerve is a note plucked with
a pick foregrounding power lines crossing
the white moon alone in cloudless black tablature,

Where there was language commerce has ploughed under,

Peculiar pajama party pizza slice Romeo
melts like cheese, runny and gooey at the
ends of centuries he had to chew on for tests
he was late for and gazed into rooms watching
friends at desks drum number 2 pencils against
top lips moaning grieving over
the Battle of Gettysburg all over again,

Meet the author and kiss him until
his wife writes her own book and
you may in turn change your taste
in scents and spices.

Tennis shoes on power lines,

Vacant room overlooking train yard
the way you were going ‘til something
nameless crawled into your suitcase
and made it weigh more than your mortgage,
dollar signs made of brass and iron,

A bent “h”,

Let’s leave the cross where it is
and move the mountain instead
one spoon at time, several times a day,
seven days a week,
we have too much shore line as it is,

Shelves full of empty aerosol cans,

Bird cages are left open
and there are feathers
spinning down from the rafters,
we cover our sandwiches
with duck billed hats,
there is a line drive to centerfield,
vacant skyscrapers in the background,
proud as men facing a firing squad,

A hand job going both ways,

A box of pencils,
a jar of paint thinner,
a gum eraser,

Lips around a straw,
Sammy Davis Jr. felt painting,
white men fishing before the black perspective of the news,
morning comes to the last dark crevice behind the dumpster,

Modified rolling pin sawdust splayer grinds off
another batch of odes and codes and stanzas that corrode
in the places they are positioned like pistons proud and
erect like men who are thoroughly fucked
with what this life has in store for them,

An apple on a plate, sliced into four parts.

Friday, August 5, 2005


Five steps
down but
who is smoking three
on a match songbook
waxy buildup
and navy blue.

This is no way
to mop the floor
or wipe that smile
from your face
as we dig for
the penny caught
in the snuggest bug palace.

The trains
don't go
to Del Mar
in July
in the heat
of the races
doggedly horsing half smiles
and cigar strands
of moonless romance.

Days from now
it's all the same
snow you've been
plowing back into the street.

Contemplate other facts
and areas of growth
like pants too tight
this time of night.

Money doesn't
grow on trees
nor does freedom come
from a barrel
of monkeys
but banana pants bosses down
run it all down,
for keeps.

You see
all the sins
of the saints
in the mold
in the bread laid
before the dead priest's body,
now eat.

Five steps up chopping wood
front style like biker skronk melon
shredded on skunk bud, mac,
my cloistered quiver requires a point.

Sunday, July 31, 2005

The rocket's red glare

The rocket's red glarehow drunk could be getbefore we began to look attractive to the flies that buzz around our heads ,against the broad strokesof red and henna coded cloudsthat set the horizon on fireas the sun sinksjust a tip under the blurred line of the planetwhere earth and skyare a duo that play one masterful rondoafter anotherone of us stands upto God and his whispering minionsthat he is tired ofsuffering the resultsof a good ideagone postal.i raise my head from my palms,stop studying the waymy shoe laces arecoming untied,i gather a sense thatthere is more to lifethan gas , food and lodgingbut would settlefor any thing because i hadnone of the aboveand no love for curbsand the drainage dreamsthey inspire, i ask "IS THERE AN ARE ART SHOWCLOSING SOMEWHERE TONIGHT??"the other one of uswas still drinking as he careened up the street,one side to the other,all the billboards should read "tilt","LOVE STRAYSAND STAYS ARID"he yells at a passing bus,i laugh, Jesus what a jerk,i will take the busand play music in my skulluntil it comes,i will be serene and leanon the vernacularthat's so spectacularwhen I'm in the bagand full of mean remarks,i will behave,i will be silent,nothing will upset me,i am invisible on the bus line,but even as my mantrais uttered and foldedinto a vest pocket of the soulover where the heart still beatswith what remains ofmy sense of my self andvirtues beyond the bulge of my wallet,a car approachesthrough the intersection,it veers closer,i sing to the streetlights,the fixtures on the power lines,the car slows down,i'm on the twelfth chorus of "Cherokee",something breaks in my lapand then I am wetwith waterneither painful nor holy,the car speeds awayinto the slim v perspectivethat runs right to the water's edge,i am wetyet am i blessedin such a state,i hum another chorus, my lap drenchedwith tap water andbits of burst balloon,and now it's darkafter eight pm in Julywhen the fireworks go offfrom the end of the pier,where i wanted to beto make a phone callunder the rocket's red glare.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

More from Netflix: Spielberg's Big Bang

The absence of any new movies compelling enough to fill column inches by film critics has a few them stirring matters up in the buzz-community with controversy that is more self-serving that satisfying as something to read: is Steven Spielberg exploiting 9/11 with his added element of terrorism and “sleeper cells” in his remake of War of the Worlds?

The question is inevitable, really. Had 9/11 not happened, there would writers searching for a lapse in ethical production with a question or two about whether the director was exploiting the Oklahoma bombing for topical subtext, with the Michigan Militia taking the place of Al Qaeda as the sublimated fifth column represented in the film. But 9/11 and Al Qaeda it is, and there defenders to Spielberg’s use of the attack as an undercurrent in is remake. Slate’s reviewer, David Edelstein, one of the better film critics working, goes overboard and maintains that Spielberg had earned the right to tailor his film to mirror the current paranoid state. It’s the sort of argument that uses every item on the shelf one can throw at, which makes the defense breathless, barely aware of its own absurdity. The first question to Edelstein's quick-draw defense is who among us hadn't earned the right to discuss, depict, interpret and frame the attack by dint surviving it , witnessing it, grieving and raging over it? Spielberg has his right to conceptualize his meanings of 9/11 all he wants, but his right to the material supersedes no one else's who was here, on this soil, American-born.

Precisely how Spielberg "earned the right" to invoke 9/11 in War of the Words isn't clear in David Edelstein's defense. Despite what the headline of the story implies, there is no gauntlet that Spielberg had to run, no set of noble tasks he had to perform, no spectacularly patriotic deeds he had to commit in order to gain the moral right to refer to 9/11 in his work. As is, the only rights he needed are those afforded him by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights; the fact that he's a fantastically successful director whose name means large profits didn't hurt him either. I doubt there was much mulling over his "right" to make transparent allusions to 9/11 while the film was in production, or even under discussion. For all the rest of it, War of the Worlds is typical Spielberg fair, blatantly pushing hot buttons, skirting the edge of the gross and edgy, but reeling back from the abyss for the fabled Hollywood Uplift that have made analyzing his films useless beyond a certain technical appraisal. Spielberg makes spectacles, loud, noisy, and fast paced, unencumbered by character depth or situations that don't fall into a play book of tropes we haven't already seen in his movies since 1941 or ET. The stab for significance, for a resonating theme against recent national catastrophe, is to be expected, but one cannot seriously argue that this makes for a new level in Spielberg's film making. He's tried his hand at being an important movie maker, but he remains someone who loves all the technologized smoke-and-mirrors over the examination of one real human detail.

Even with all the references and metaphors to terrorists and sleeper cells, War of the Worlds is exactly the sort of expensive wind up toy we expect from Spielberg and his sort; a mechanized, mindless engine of activity that will pursue its own demise, clamorously so. As it goes, Spielberg consistently demonstrates mastery with the big effects and visual garnishes he loves to deploy. They're eye-popping treats, and sometimes there is even a horrible beauty in the crammed images even as he strains, preens and exerts his directorial will for effect. The rain of clothes in the forest as the family flees a Tripod attack in particular is haunting for any number of reasons, not the least being that it's a well composed scene that appears at the right point in the proceedings. 

Subtext , ambiguity and philosophical-laced irony are not his strong suits, however, and what attempts there are in his works to grapple with the uncrossable essences of life are either complete muddles, demonstrated with his curious and garbled "collaboration" with Kubrick AI , or rescind all claims at problematized edginess by an arbitrary insertion of family-values endings, viewable in Minority Report. Other praised "mature" works like Saving Private Ryan and Schindler's List never rise above the ham-handed when it comes to offering wisdom to an audience, and that's Spielberg's flaw; he tries to think and succeeds principally in dressing up civics-course clichés with 100 million dollar budgets. There are those who will make a case for Spielberg as having more gravitas than he's been given credit for, but it's the sort of argument that produces language much too eloquent for the cause at hand; they don't sound as if they really believe the hype and overstate the case. Hollywood would prefer that he most successful American director in history be an intellectual as well as an entertainer , but little in the gale of words coming to Spielberg's defense obscures the obvious, that he is a technician, an extremely competent craftsman who occasionally make satisfying, crowd pleasing entertainments. The final scene, with the reappearance of the assumed dead son at Grandma and Grandpa's house in the only Boston neighborhood that hadn't been torched by the aliens, was nearly enough to ruin the film for me. As sheer spectacle, WOTW has the slick allure of a disaster movie, but Spielberg feels required to assure us that the central characters are all okay in the end. The son's reemergence was as sloppy and cynical a ploy as the resurrection of ET.

Spielberg's right to use 9/11 references isn't disputed here, it's the pretense that what he's offering up is anything more than entertainment with an overlay of topicality. Spielberg has tried his hand several times to be Serious Director, and the results--Pvt. Ryan, The Color Purple, Schindler's List-- are notable for the fact that  tries so hard  hard for significance. The fatal flaw with these films, I think, is his inability to abandon visual hugeness and instead explore an idea of human concern. War of the Worlds works well it does because he's back with the kind of material he does wonders with, the sci-fi action-adventure. The secret in this formula is to keep the number of ideas you're working with to a minimum, keep your focus, and keep things moving at a brisk, efficient pace. It's a darker vision, it's topical and fraught with a sharper paranoia and alarm than before, but it's intended, finally, as escapist fare, expensively mounted. I don't attack Spielberg for doing what does when it comes together, but we ought not to pretend that his intentions are nobler than woman who cuts your hair or the man who bags your groceries

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Cecil Taylor

Nothing fits the cadence that
quits before a fist can pound

hard ivory blocks for truth
that is both black and white

and a chronic wash of riffing tones
flying in formation around the
shape of your head as you forget dreams
and addresses of friends you need to call,

drums lay it down, high hat , snare rattle,
a road that takes you out of town

to further reaches past the beaches
and downtown corners where you
cars and their screeches
as they stop for pedestrians
chatting up phantoms with
empty cell phones, wasting
minutes as they cross,

fingers building and knocking down
chords and melodies to the rhythm

that has ceased to be a way to move forward
and is now a quaking way to meet
the man in the moon,

piano jazz in the thick of cocktails
that muddy the distinctions between
a screaming blues sting
or the sideways , shard -ridden
gray-hued murk of Dachau's
lost voice and string quartets,

a music that's constantly waking up
in night sweats, angular and hallow
in the chest,

are there shadows dancing
with one another as this
music plays?

Saturday, July 2, 2005

Bombs bursting in air

Bombs bursting in air

Something smells like gas
everytime he comes on TV,

our world in the political sense
is smaller and less comprehensible,

he does shadow animals against
the a map of the earth, making it

seem as if a vulture was swooping
where an arrow points to a California town

that reads "You Are Here!", black wings
and thumbnail talons ready to scratch

place names right off the surface,
a room mate lights a cigarette,

"That shit will kill you" I say while
I wave a hand in air that doesn't move,

he puffs, jettisons a hard white stream,
points to the set,

"Look who has an army and navy" he says
and walks out the door onto a dark street

where turntables and hard rock guitars
do tricks with the language that will not

address them directly, I smell gas
and get the feeling of having wings

suddenly and without reason, my drink is spilled,
more people with bombs are killed,

a vote hardly seems worth the chad that
hangs from it,

every state has something rotten
at the core, it's bombs in the air,

collapsing buildings, planes off their flight plans,
we can clean up this mess with enough gasoline,

who's revolution is it anyway?

Bombs bursting in air

Bombs bursting in air

Something smells like gas
everytime he comes on TV,

our world in the political sense
is smaller and less comprehensible,

he does shadow animals against
the a map of the earth, making it

seem as if a vulture was swooping
where an arrow points to a California town

that reads "You Are Here!", black wings
and thumbnail talons ready to scratch

place names right off the surface,
a room mate lights a cigarette,

"That shit will kill you" I say while
I wave a hand in air that doesn't move,

he puffs, jettisons a hard white stream,
points to the set,

"Look who has an army and navy" he says
and walks out the door onto a dark street

where turntables and hard rock guitars
do tricks with the language that will not

address them directly, I smell gas
and get the feeling of having wings

suddenly and without reason, my drink is spilled,
more people with bombs are killed,

a vote hardly seems worth the chad that
hangs from it,

every state has something rotten
at the core, it's bombs in the air,

collapsing buildings, planes off their flight plans,
we can clean up this mess with enough gasoline,

who's revolution is it anyway?

Monday, June 27, 2005

off we go

when there is no daylight
at the edge of the bed,
my hair wakes up
before I do , ablaze with sunrise.

therefore, your orange juice
is precious, sweet and
quenching in the pulp,
light dims to a readable gleam,
my hair lies flat on my head,
you make lunch for your daughters,

there is still so much to do,
you say,
what shall we do
and where is the microphone
we were promised,
I mean, we need
to go off on a toot
and scream for justice
from roof tops that
will not throw us off
or collapse as we raise
our voice above the static,
here, wipe your chin, silly man...

Emily sneaks a doll into her lunch box
Violette looks unhappy
as only beauty could make
and I was on my third
cup of coffee, my second cigarette
when the earth
began to shake, the ceiling
began to shake
the walls began to vibrate
like engines raging in small rooms, door closed,
we scream and cower,
cuddly and ready for a quake.

trash pick up
you say,
I wish they
wouldn't push those
huge dumpsters against
the apartment building, not an earthquake?
asks Violette,
no dearest you answer,
we still have to go to school?
she queries,
yes you reply,
we all have someplace to be
with many important things to do.

I rise from the floor,
gaze in the mirror at my hair askance,
ready to
sit at my desk,
answer the phone
and ask everyone who
calls how there day has been so far.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

by the bay

my voice leaves me
and i breathe no more,

you are on wings
and on a prayer,

a memory with wings
that flies over the bay,

gulls that scud the surface
of the bay, picking up fish,

my voice sings with no words,
every note of my blues

ascends a register,
i clench my fists, i speak your name.

your mother cries, your father weeps,
yes, your eyes are the bluest

they've ever been,

boats with sails cruise to the horizon
in the middle of the day,

we eat fruit and weep by the bay,

expecting you to come along, somehow,
because you always did

in darkest hour or brightest day,
a cornerstone is gone,

our house tilts a little more,

but the skies are clear, i say at last,
they are the bluest they've every been...

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

People Who Hang Up

It's love that breaks against the rocks
and not foam nor water of any kind,
it's a baptism of ire that makes the horizon

burn in coalish, motionless plumes.

Stained cotton from every beach front window.

We were smoking joints

in the guts of the canyons,
the mired trai1s to
the sea kissed shale.

All the blues from Chicago knife

and gunshot histories are folk lore
all the kids
destroy with their breathing.

Even at dinner time,
forks are next to plates
whose owners wonder
what's eating their neighbors
with all the strange phone calls
about what's going on the beach.

The armies of the night couldn't
scare up a quarter
of the beaches America
has landed on
searching for something
to talk about
on acres
of empty cable talk shows
where anyone in a tight suit and big glasses
can explain away the bombs bursting in air
with sarcasm
and ad -libs.

Thursday, June 2, 2005

Beside Ourselves

We cannot stop scratching
the skin where it itches

anymore than cars can't
but rust when parked outdoors
in rainy climes,

each dime I have goes to no
good purpose

which is to buy you
more things whose name
you purr with that slight tremble in the vowels,

here's a wooden owl for you
to sit next to, it has clock
where the stomach should be,

it's eyes move from side to side
like yours do when the drugs
are especially wicked,

there's dust the knees
my favorite slacks,
and there's a hole in an elbow
of my jacket from leaning
on lunch counters
as I ready magazines about fame,

you call me again
and it's been years
since I've seen you
and I leave the phone
on the pillow while
I leave the room to shave,

you've said it all before
and I heard it each time
you spoke your ills
into being ,

nothing dies in your mind,
your demons are arisen,

nothing is deadened
in any inch of my skin,

desire burns
for years dispite the cities
I've moved to ,

my demons
put on my shoes
and my best pairs of pants
to walk the earth
looking for a date
on the first calendar they find.

Wednesday, June 1, 2005

Part Time Heaven

I have been to heaven
on my days off
and just missed the ceremonies
and the best big band music ever
as a cadet angels finally earned
their wings and raised them
to fly in formation against
a sun that is never crossed by clouds,
all I could see were the workmen sweeping up,
emptying the latrines , and
ridding the clouds of evidence
of all that downy androgny.

Back on earth
I park myself
at the coffee house
because it was still
a day off and read the newspaper
between hot sips on scalding coffee,
making note of headline announcing
that the world had stopped going to hell
because we've run out of hand baskets.
"Don't get yer hopes up, boyo" says Josh,
a Swedish massage therapist
taking a drag from his third cigarette
in five minutes, " that ain't the good news
we've been hoping for 'cuz all that
bad faith and congealed karma is
all clotted and clogged and it's all
about to burst and before you
know it
it'll be 9-11 everyday".
I start talking about the weather
as Josh goes back to furiously scribbling
in his spiral notebook, I mention
that the clouds look very fluffy
and maternal, like the softest
place where a man could lay his
head and find that center of rest
that eludes him in the night
as he wrestles with the sheets
and argues with voices that
have no intention of going to sleep.
Josh lights another cigarette,
mumbles something about
vectors and dreams, death and devastation.

It's spring, I say,
flowers are blooming,
hormones are kicking into gear,
men and women and boys
and girls are exhibiting
an unnatural kindness
to one another in the streets
and I swear the water tastes
sweeter these sunny days
in May, but Josh grumbles,
his head in a shroud of fumes and disgust,
his knuckles white as they hold the
pen that tears across the notebook page,
his writing looks like tattoo scars,

I arise to get another cup
of coffee,
and happen to look up
when a feather
falls, there's a flock of unknown birds
flying in perfect V formations
against the sun emerging
from behind cloud banks,

all to make this
the best day to wake up to
if I'd been sleeping all this time
until now.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

The hands of my watch have stopped

The hands of my watch have stopped
dead on the dial, frozen on the face of it

and the spoon full of steaming soup
is an inch from my mouth, arrested.

Anticipation is suddenly my middle name on
my license as the spoon drips back into the bowel,

clueless to how many hours have passed by us
like so many cars leaving the city once a factory whistle blares

or someone yawns the right number of times
as the sun drifts to the horizon, to sink beneath the sea.

The cat looks to be posing for cute posters of
cats knocking things over, like it's done tonight with

that drink that is stuck in mid air , in front of the TV
with the beer ad on where no can even lick the suds

from their mustaches because time has stopped for the time
because you're out of the room,

on a cell phone ,
smoking a Camel.

You are probably conspiring with a girl friend
to stuff me in burlap bag and leave me

on a corner in a bad neighborhood, thinking gypsies
or blues musicians will find me and give me something

to do besides moon over your image, holding my breath
until you come back into the room,

just like your doing now, coming through the door
reeking of filter tips, cell phone in your grip,

looking at me askance when you see me exhale,
blowing out candles in the process, oh yeah,

I mean it's okay, really, I'm just glad you're back
from the break you took in the middle of my proposal

which means that all the breakable things left in the air
in your absence can now come crashing down to the

hard tile floor, all the bric-a-brac and my world particularly
getting bruised, bent and shattered and breaking wide, wide open,

my heart is broken again
when it's time to swim

and there's nothing funny about this at all,
I mean,

you're kind of cute, the way you
reduce me to rubble
even in my finest
courting clothes.

Flight Home

I give you sun when it
should be cloudy all day
so now the mountains
are full of snow that
has fallen too long over
the slopes, the cliffs,
every ravaged turn of
twisted road.

Satellite transmissions cannot
penetrate the clouds that
have wrapped the peaks of
the highest Sierra,
I call all of your names
when I see the shadow of the
plane fleetly cross the field,
a speck of a car moves
up slim sliver of a road
that follows a huge ravine
of brown land, I cannot jam his radio,
my wings are stiff as my neck,
I call your name.

There's five hours of
thumbed magazines
and fast food wrappers
remaining where I sat
trying to control the weather
and flow of information,
but I can see that California
still looks the same
once we've landed ,
grey autumn skies
and mirthless cheer on every
face coming off the ramp,

Did you enjoy
the snow I gave you as I flew over your state,
did you miss your favorite shows,
did you read the books
you said you bought?
Some things are left hanging
and there's nothing left to say
or do except leave like they do
in bad plays ,
and it seems that everything for awhile
is suspended, free of intention
until you snap to as if from sleep
and see that
there are things
you cannot wake up from.


Thursday, April 28, 2005


Exciting Night

Exciting TV drama
and the sizzle of steaks
the monotony of having a
like in a roof that
just drips
as long there's a floor
and a old carpet to ruin
with a seeping, creeping rain.

On the set
it's a show about
at work who wave their arms
and raise their
voices in the interests
of what the right thing to do is,
so much yelling in
the face

of your co-workers,
so much insubordination
because there
is so much principle at stake
as to whether to charge the credit card number
for the guaranteed no show.
The desk clerk berates his manager
while the bell man looks on
while straightens
his lapels and
looks vaguely haunted
in the awful light of
valet parking...

"...Damn it, Dan, we held the room ALL FREAKING NIGHT
and they didn't show
even with two
telephone confirmations.
I coulda sold that room
a hundred times over
if I could have.
We gotta charge 'em,
we gotta pay for the night maid..."

The music rises while the three of them freeze in place
while they squint
and rotate their jaw lines,
and then the commercial hits
the screen, and then
I turn off the sound,
fixating on the drip,
the growing stain
in the rug, I grit my teeth
and look at you in the other room
listening to
all five volumes of
live Johnny Winter
on head phones,
I am trapped in a house
where only little things
having no
sane description
effect the course of the night, the mood it takes
even as the storm rages harder and there is
the sound of continuous applause
through out the house, down the hall ways,
up the stairs and echoing against
the tile
and grouts, bouncing off the mirror I stood in front of this morning
licking a lip with a tongue that
needed to taste something that
was lost in the stubble of
a beard turning gray completely
only after the new century
has wrapped its arms
around the house
and its storyline and made sure
everyone knows
that where they sleep
is a roof closer to the one
we die under

In however much time it takes,
assuming we're in doors, in bed, after sex with
a woman
you 'vet loved since
before the beginning of memory,
assuming a life that deserves applause
like the way the rain sounds now,
crisp and demanding and rattling the
chains of heaven's
rusty gate

A gun goes off after the commercial
and I see
the clerk, manager and the bellman
still standing behind the front desk
while a guest they'd been ignoring
holds a smoking gun on them,
screaming words to the effect that his continental breakfast
gave him the squirts bad,
a situation not helped
by hotel plumbing
that's old and
clogged with the evidence of strangers passing through town
on their way to better shows,

you are singing
to Johnny Winter
real fine
"...It's my
own fault, baby
treat me the way
the way

You slide down the seat,
you shirt runs up
your waist,
you rib cage
rises and falls
with the fluid rush of Winter's blues guitar,

I dream of smoking
after we make love,
I dream of you
dreaming of me
in all the rooms
where there are ceiling leaks
on a night that
hasn't enough
bowls or pans
to catch every drop.

cloud cover

there are echos of songs
we used to know which
become deadened with
age and too much polishing,
like bright forks tapped against
the stems of long wine glasses,

but i see nothing beyond
the curtains, the day is a blur
as notes of sampled melody
leak from headsets attached
to thin, twin wires, it's a men and
women lifting glasses to toast
a union, the rising moon in the
middle of the day,

cars stall too long
at the fork of the road
just as clouds take away the sunlight
and make the shapes seen through
the curtain lace disappear
like water stains evaporating on
white sheets, there is smoke
from behind the dumpster
where caterers lower their trays
and light up their desperate unfiltered brands,

i keep being kissed on the cheek
and called 'sir' by small children,
i smell aromas, burned match heads,
the smell of your hair crosses under my
nose, i cross the room and open a window,

the band packs up its instruments,
valet service hands back the keys they've kept,

something happened today
just as the sun reached the top of the day
and the moon gave a smile or a wink
before ducking behind a cloud
passing as if it were in a cartoon
that plays when you leave the room
for a drink or the bathroom,

something happened
and I was there in the thick of it all
going down,

and there's nothing to report
when you ask me
how my day was
other than a shrug and a grunt
that mean i love you
every minute you're not here."


there is not enough of you
to go around

even as the plane circles
airport a third and a fourth time,

a deck of cards in your hands
contains nothing but sixes and eights,

and there's only hard, dry land
under the wing span's shadow,

eyes closed, your head up,
head phones as usual, private music,

the rumble of engines fills my ears
that have just popped open

like corks flying
from carbonated bottles,

i wish i could sleep
as i imagine the city
does now as we approach,

i wish we were in an apartment
below us in bed and half awake
after making love, my arm coming
up to your breasts, complaining
in grating mumble that we have
to buy a house away from runways,
in the country or may be the mountains
they fly over,

my fingers grip the arm rests,
my eyes turn to the window,

the skyline comes on us too fast,
like everything in life,

it comes on us too fast.

Saturday, April 2, 2005

John Paul ll Arrives at Heaven's Gate For Processing
take off the hatand put on some pants
take a seat,pick up a magazine,
you don't need a menu, sir,this is much stays true.
yes, there is band practice around the clock.sorry, but we like our brass section.
says here you liked to ski and travel.
wait 'til youget a load of the wings/
no more sacramentsgiven through bullet proof glass.
we don't need clockswhere we are.
that's why it's calleda waiting room.
no, it's not passed your bed time,you're dead, remember?
oh, you can blesssomething if you really like,but it's carrying coals to New Castle, really,
yes, everyone has to fill out the paperwork, yes , I know who you are,
I know who everyone is.