Tokyo Motel My faith has failed meTokyo Motel in Free Verse More Like This
Your words are like the sunset
Please take me with you
We're always looking for something worth seeing.
I like to picture a young Franz Wright reading his life
sentence to a song bird and a hungry cat.
You're a poet. Welcome to Hell.
My father was a welder and probably more cynical.
(Another reason why I still throw salt over my shoulder.)
If I could, I'd ask him if he meets a lot of
pen junkies in the wherever of the afterlife,
and nothing else
DriveIt was going to be last night.Drive in Free Verse More Like This
Instead, I drove until sunrise and
had breakfast at a truck stop diner.
I spent the day, lost in a nature reserve
on the frayed edges of a small town.
I made myself forget its name and,
somehow, I found my way back home.
I once told you that the world
would become a better place.
I intend to keep that promise.
Subtle BlameIn forty years the floor boards will be rotten.Subtle Blame in Free Verse More Like This
This morning a garbage truck stopped at the house, but
their services haven't been required in several weeks.
A pill bottle sat in the corner of the bathroom.
Nobody knew that there was a spider inside of it.
High WaterIt took eleven weeks for my stomach to stop turning.High Water in Free Verse More Like This
White water reality, broken hands, splintered paddles.
If you ever felt inclined to place your head against my chest again,
you wouldn't hear a heart beat over the roar of water in my lungs.
If you ever desired to wrap your arms around my waist,
you would find that there is far less warmth to hold onto.
For now, we drown in the perfect darkness of canyon waters.
Like infant gods, we chose to carve these wounds into
the very foundation of our fabricated universe.
Deeper than the initials of youthful lovers.
Further inward, past yellow bone and soured marrow.
We've been forever spoiled by the idea of our own greatness.
(But when my body washes upon the shore, I will always try to find you.)
MyiagrosYou went quietlyMyiagros in Free Verse More Like This
Like granite with finesse
Days and nights
The come down monster
I had a drink
Six, seven, eight more
Always and sometimes
The weeks of illness
Before it pulled your eyes shut
No small talk
Just plain, empty time
I walked to the store for smokes
Struggled not to howl
There was fly paper nailed to the register
Legs still moving
And I knew what they were buzzing for
Hell had found you first
A Farewell to MoleskineI chose not to water your Oleanders.A Farewell to Moleskine in Free Verse More Like This
There was a reason, but it has dried in
my mind like those magenta petals.
You stopped buying me first editions,
when our friends claimed they made
me seem pretentious.
They didn't know about the ketchup stain
on Catcher in the Rye, or the highlighter
I took to This Side of Paradise.
They didn't know anything about being the oldest
book on a shelf- The fact that dust yearns for the
attentive breath of life to set it free.
Words are not prisoners in a flower pot.
They do not die with ease.
I remember now,
I didn't water your Oleanders
because they made you seem
ForeclosureWhere are they now?Foreclosure in Free Verse More Like This
emerald city slums,
dirt in the sky.
The child fell off his bike and
skinned his knee. He cried when
I tried to help him up. Ants carried
his blood away. We don't need
that kind of pride.
A woman in Pasadena sold a slice
of toast with F.D.R.'s face on it.
I thought it looked more like you
standing in the rain.
We were asked to recreate the Gospels and
you suggested Michael Bay.
Some things never change.
Columbus found America,
the same way Descartes found existence,
the same way my brother found bourbon
the same way a horse finds religion.
It was always there so
just be careful with it.
We're all afraid of snakes.
The Hottest 30 DaysThe traffic never bothered him until he had nowhere to go.The Hottest 30 Days in Free Verse More Like This
It took two hours to get across town and he forgot the applications.
There wasn't snow on the ground, so he pulled over
and parked in a tow away zone. He walked around
the center of that city and thought about his father standing in line
with him at the Hartford shopping mall twenty seven years earlier
in the town where he grew up.
It's Christmas time and all of the other children are
pissing themselves with anticipation.
Over the scent of plastic evergreens and candy canes,
his father still smells like motor oil and top shelf bourbon.
The closer he gets to the obese man in the red coat,
the more he shakes with fear. Tears well up in his eyes.
Right before it's his turn, his dad pulls him out of line and
they walk quietly back to the car.
His dad doesn't turn the heat on or bother looking in the rearview mirror;
"Don't make me leave w
GrassYou wake up and it's spring again. The kids have all grown up and moved out. Your neighbor needs to mow her lawn but she is too seasoned for long exposure to the southern sun. It dawns on you one night when you're grilling steaks for your family. Your daughter calls you over to the table. She's on her third glass of wine. She met a man in graduate school. He doesn't drink. They clear their throats in unison and announce that they are engaged and plan to be married next January. You're happy for them but that is getting further and further from your mind. Your eyes shift over to the tall weeds growing only feet away from your wife's roses. You think about the fact that your neighbor never mentioned grandchildren. She never mentioned anyone. You think about the boy down the street who died in that car accident this winter. He always took care of her yard for a priGrass in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Freedom and the Summer of CarbonThere's a band aid on her ankleFreedom and the Summer of Carbon in Free Verse More Like This
bleeding up her thigh and onto her neck.
A right handed whiskey bottle slung
over her razor wire shoulder .
Today, the train track was a catwalk .
Nothing about her hair or her lip ring
cried out "Help me". No, she was the
collective pulse and the sun couldn't set
until she took off those shades.
I couldn't leave until I found her eyes.
She shouted over the whistle of an approaching train.
"Sometimes you can find lumps of coal tucked between the rails.
They turn into diamonds. Didn't you know?"
"I think that process takes a really long time."
"Time is all I have and coal."
We stood off to the edge as the beast rolled by.
I think we both thought about what would happen
if we stepped in front of the next one.
Both in different ways.
"You should leave. I feel silly being watched."
"Diamonds right? Aren't they all about pressure?
"And heat." She smiled and removed her sunglasses.