The Last DetentionI've spent too many years sittingThe Last Detention in Free Verse More Like This
in the back of a classroom.
We see thousands of chalkboard faces
in the evening haze of rush hour traffic.
The nicest days of the year always happen
when our Teachers give us detention.
We can't be trusted to punish ourselves.
Grab a stick of chalk and begin.
100 times- I will not cheat on my husband.
100 times- I will not miss my nephew's soccer game so I can drink alone.
100 times- I will not leave smaller tips for the older, less attractive waitresses.
100 times- I will finally get the courage to kiss her tonight.
100 times- I will tell him it is over if he hits me again.
100 times- I will not be weak.
100 times- I will notice the sky today.
100 times- I will invite the widow in 5A to Christmas Dinner.
100 times- I will call my sister.
100 times- I will learn the difference between what is worth fighting for and what isn't.
100 times- I will ask my co worker how he is doing and actually care.
100 times- I will do more than just get by.
What if there
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.)
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.
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.
Not by Eastern Windows OnlySitting on dark roofs,Not by Eastern Windows Only in Free Verse More Like This
their lips were stained with bits of ash.
The garden was there to remind him
that he would always be in love.
Between her skin and the wildflowers,
he understood the evening lights.
Her black eyes were once as green as August.
Though he can't remember if it was
yesterday or long ago on a summer night.
He can't avoid the first snow fall.
Stealing WednesdayJust this once,Stealing Wednesday in Free Verse More Like This
let it be an angel plume
floating on the borrowed breeze.
Something living but also alive.
A bouquet of forget-me-nots nestled
in the arms of Alzheimer's
the hands of hatred.
We aren't asking for a field-
The strength to take back tomorrow
Just this once,
Give us something we deserve:
The hidden dirt road
The Love SongLet us go,The Love Song in Free Verse More Like This
when even the sky retreats.
Cheap hotels. Sawdust.
Streets like insidious questions.
Oh, do let us go.
The yellow fog came back to the windows.
The tongue of the evening lingered in drains.
Let us go and let October fall asleep.
There will be time to create time and
a hundred revisions.
Indeed, there will be time; a simple universe.
In a minute there is a minute.
Reverse, for I know the morning voices
die beneath the father.
How should I fix you when I am formulated?
When I am the wall?
How should I presume?
I have known arms, white and bare.
Arms that lie at dusk.
We sit and watch smoke rise from lonely men.
I should have been the sea, the afternoon peace.
Stretched on the floor, here beside you,
I have the moment.
I have prayed, though I am no prophet.
I have the moment.
I was afraid after all the talks of you and me.
Would it have been worth it to have the smile?
To be the overwhelming pillow by her head?
That is not what the sunset sprinkled on the floor.
Acid Girl 04She once told me that Mexican nights were shorterAcid Girl 04 in Free Verse More Like This
With enough pills, October can be one long day
Those eyes never promised calm waves or Novocain
There's tequila in our mouthwash
The problem is I don't see this as a problem anymore
Nine out of ten dentists recommend swallowing the worm
An air conditioner is smoking somewhere downstairs
I breathed in the cold second hand and the minute stopped moving
We're only alive part time- cashing our rain checks in rubber boots
On the weekends, she doesn't know that it's the weekend
I'm always aware of footprints in the mud and snow
If they take the trash, it's Thursday
The puppy calendar on the fridge says 2009
Someone drew dicks on September's golden retriever
But this way, it's always three years before the Mayans ruin everything
The kitchen ants drown in the kitchen sink
One sheet of fly paper hangs from a horseshoe in the doorway
The stove can only been used to light roaches
A needle in the night stand makes a guest appearance
The liquor cabi
Turn Me on, Dead ManWhat do we hear in theTurn Me on, Dead Man in Free Verse More Like This
echo of our lunacy?
Is it white noise?
You may bury Paul
or the cranberry sauce.
You're, by no means, in a room.
Read this backwards-
There is an angel under my bed
holding a bucket of headless dolls.
Light her on fire please.
I would never suggest a trip
to the zoo in autumn,
when the elephants try
extra hard to remember.
If it can't be avoided,