it came with a bookmark from a long-defunct San Franciscan bookstore
words and images; mood and tone
a woodstove, maybe.
go skiing at night.
it’s barely 7am
and the day can’t get
do you lean slightly
the viscosity of
but it is not
i take hawthorn
for my heart.
and who the fuck wants to
it’s still in here.
does not leak.
none of the leaks,
not really hungry but
also never not hungry,
a collector of resources.
i use my body
i turned my attention to
i will not have reason to
alter my position.
you invent reasons
careful not to make
too much eye contact.
how long it will be before
i can reasonably eat
has a pleasing appearance.
when it is time to
we think conservatively.
think to yourself,
“i can do it myself”.
don’t do it.
that will make people
the sunday stream
of pious cars.
the bag holds contents
just the same.
which isn’t really cryptic at all and more just a kind way to say “fuck off
the sun had
a quarter of an hour,
a half of an hour.
i might sometimes like to
some people like
uncool! insecure! finding some men attractive!
there’s a dead bird floating
in the water next to my boat.
don’t go out
across from a shop offering
cellular communication services.
but the settlement
is brittle and
do not notice
when the shoe they are
in variations of
the same clothing.
kind of a
and looked at
and fantasized yourself as
part of their lives.
i cower inside
i contribute to the culture
look at people,
look at birds,
look at buildings.
we are supposed to
talk to each other.
half a year,
three quarters of
is an unsteady option.
“i’ve seen your
not your mouth.
that’s normal now”
pointless shit like
being born in a land of
and dullardly competitive menace.
to which can
big ol’ four door diesel
park it right by the entrance,
as close as you can get it.
the dogs yell.
the trick of it is,
there is no trick.
just go ahead and
wet and smeared
mark the passage
when the darkness comes,
you let it come.
“i’m gonna get mine!”
of tiny holes.
it feels good
to move through space.
this is why
later, i watch
on a video
eat a hamburger.
behind the soft gray
you want to
go to that
all around me
is freely given.
up against each
it is said
an empty mind
a peaceful mind;
the big industry
of his state,
more than he could
the spray smells faintly
you share things that
might be of
we put dreams
into our skin.
and this is
an everlasting joy.
in the land,
which we fall
the only way
to get better
to let go.
in the wisened eyes
of their old wooden
i could not
eat the burrito,
did not mind.
she has a
and tends bar
a small house in an obscurity of woods
i breathe in and
am caught by the sharp barbs
of his chemically-enhanced scent.
all of us,
i felt ok
he says to me,
“i have an
and we couldn’t be
any more different”.
i could make
art of this,
the body is
i do not
i think about
for far longer
a literal genius
when it is hot enough
“your tailpipe is
the most beautiful
with a smile,
the driver looked at me
with a pale mixture
the human animal
has wiped out
near all the other
the bars are
there must be
quiet to keep
from our gunmetal
i felt fat
on an evening couch,
eating cherry pie.
quiet, only insects and wind
i bought a
pair of pants
to save about
i carry my own
in a bag,
like a dog’s.
i don’t think the town is beautiful
i can always try again
future human, do you exist?
one reason that
at the same time.
what you do is; go to a place where people gather
i ain’t with being broke
the earth spins just the same
i can fit in to anything, i think
i am not
really even so
but i’d like
rain comes in gusts.
wind comes in drenches.
we are tired and we are tiring
i celebrate four years of sobriety
the peopleneedcoffee.hotcoffee.earlyin the morning.so they canwake up.so they cankeep asleep. the peopleneedclean toilets.clean sinks.towelsmade of trees,with which todry their hands.soapin a dispensermade of metaland plastic,so as to feelclean. the peopleneedmany options,many typesof beans,for example,many typesof soup.many optionsfor breadandfor eggs.a hundredat leastdifferent kindsof cereal. the placesthe peoplegofor theseshopping options,they must beclean andwell lit.the shelvesthat displaythe optionsmustContinue reading “in which people are tricked into thinking hoarding resources is anything but mental illness”
the species ismade ofglass. in anamber roommade ofwoodmusic floatslikesnowflake;crystalline,lilting. the species ismade ofglass,its eyelooks outon structuresbelieved solid.as liquidtheymove. musicburnishes theamber room,bringing to ita shinelikebrass. the species ismade ofglass,holdingglass,glassholdingliquid. the species iswarminside andcoolto the touch. the species ispreciseand yetabruptlybrought to apiling ofshard.crystalline,lilting,motionless. in an amberroommusic hangsfrom crystalfixtures,light poursdownin mahoganyred. the species ismade ofglass. vanilla firelights therooms,turningContinue reading “the music across the channel sounded closer than the music in the room”
one of thefunniest thingsi’ve ever readwasan articlein Rolling Stonemagazinewhen i wasaround12 years oldabout howmascotsat sporting eventsroutinelyget the shitkicked out of themby fanswho lose controland“forget”that there isa real person insidethe costume. an attractive bodyclads itself inskin tight pants.i notice this andmove my own bodyso as to have abetter field of view.to watchthe attractive bodyas it walks.Continue reading “ya well what else is there to do on a tuesday”
gatheringat the edge,where landgives wayto water,the peoplelook at the oceanand say,“what’s in itfor me?” turning around,backsto the ocean,the peoplewalkto the great fieldsof grasses,stopping,looking around,the peopleask,“what’s in itfor me?” the fieldsare green andgolden,the grasses areindigo andgray,the peoplewalk tothe rising foothills,the wooden forests,the breathing trees.taking breathdeep into theirlungs,the peopleexhale and say,“what’s in itfor me?” climbingto a smallclearing,sweatslidingContinue reading “i don’t care what you think unless it is about me”
it’s trash day;the ravens cackleat our meager efforts. bags peek andtorn from undermassive plastic lid. trash blowslike confettithrough the streets;we celebrateour success. 48 gallonsa week isfar too little. 96 gallonsa weekcannot contain us. we arebland extractors,bred to consume.we areusurpers,formattedfor waste. the land isnow ours;there isn’tenoughroomfor others. quiver,yes,quiver.no,not arrows,butbullets.guns. Fearholds us allin its anestheticpalm.terrified,we grip ourContinue reading “a series of minor inconveniences”
the earlyAugust morningshows me i ambreathing. shows me mybreath. i walk abroken shudderof a street,thankfulfor this reminder. the day ismostlyneutral,thoughthere have beenmore disappointmentsthan not. the small town ischokedwith passive people,moving slowlyin their herds. the locals areimpatient. the locals arerushing. the locals areproudof their locality. the day ismostly neutralthough it isskewed,a dull slant,towards disappointment. and maybetheContinue reading “i think i am angry but it’s more likely that i am scared”
a small pathhuggedbetween a patch ofopen forest anda dead endtwo laneroad. up ahead,a man crossesthis road pushinga bike.he continues pushingalong the path. i look brieflyaway,look back,he’s gone. the forest has to beregularly beaten backfrom the path.the berry busheshacked and tamed. a slugslugs wetlyon the ground.a longer look andi see its gutsexploded quietly from it. monsterContinue reading “i look at the skyline. it lets me feel better”
the air smells ofburning plastic.the air smells ofsalt.small snailscrunch underfoot.the air smells ofburning rubber.the air smells ofwood. a photo ofgrinning bags of meat,holding aloft alarge fish.blood streams downits side.grinning,the fish isvery large.grinning,lets put the photoin the newspaper.grinning,this is news.the photo isblack and white andbright red bloodstreams downthe fish’s side.it is alarge fish,once common.now,newsworthy. the airContinue reading “the only way to win is to lose”
she tells me,she says,“with the new joband the new movei’m just notin a place topursuea relationship.i hopewecan be friends?”. look tothe left,all the way,so thatright eyesees tipof nose.look tothe right,all the way,tip ofnose.scanthe horizon,slowly. take deep breaths. smiling, “yes,friends arealwaysgood to have,a friend isalwaysgood to be”. i need tospeakto someone,i need thissomeoneto instruct meon theContinue reading “i was an anxious child”
some peopledon’t mind ifthe toilet paper rollis mounted in such a wayas to feed the paper outunderhanded. using severityto manage severityis likeusing hateto convince peopleof your love. unspooling,underhanded,there is a calmthat comes withacquiescence;i said goodbyeto a longterm friend,haven’t spent a lickof time togetherin coming up onfour years.all those years,this friend was neveralone.i did notknow it,Continue reading “a few for you and a few for me, too”
two days ago,shirtlessin a backyard.hiddenby fence.chickensneed their freedoms,so gates needunclasping.water needs spilling.food, tossedtowards excited clucking. barefoot and shirtless,uncomfortablein the comfortof morning warmth. my skin folds,my knees bend,my body is tenderand soft. uncomfortable,my body givesand always itake. and today,in long pants andwool socks.in insulating fleece andcoats proofed against rain.in leather shoeson graveled streets. a small rock,bouncesContinue reading “in defense of copies; digital, analog, genetic.”
it has taken meall dayto gather thesethoughts. yesterday evening,last night,i watched hernaked back gatherin dusky folds,only to againpull taut. earlier,a day or twoearlier,i entered agrocery storethat has notchanged at allin the years sincemy last entry. i stopped inthe cool mistedpresence of produce,struck with a minornote of awe;“so,you mean,i leave,and…things justkeep right ongoing?” the phone nowhasContinue reading “emotion in a neutral state”
this place,where i amstanding,it is notmy preference. i would rather beelsewhere,doing somethingelse. it is quietin here,here,where i’d prefer tonot be. there areseveral large windowshere,letting in gulps ofoutside light. outside,outside it islightly raining. inside,here,where i would prefer to not be,it is quiet. the rain beads upon the large windows.the beads of rainroll smoothly downthe glass. iContinue reading “how to reduce conceptualization and experience Life as it is”
when i wasyoungerand the gangsterswere the coolesti taught myselfto walkwith my feetpointed out to the side,like the gangsters do. i watched thegangsters laugh andsell drugs.i watched themwalk into classroomsand curse out the teacher.i watched as theyfell in the parkand in the streetand in the alleyand up alongside the curb.and alwaysthey were cool. many years haveContinue reading “in the Chicago Tribune young women write letters to the editor explaining why gangsters are cool”
a song in a room,the roomopen to the outdoors. the musician,a son toanother musician. the door,painteda pale yellowand opento the talking ofparking lot ravens. outside,there aremountains and ocean,eagles and bears.lots of green trees. buti cannot seeany of that,no,i see apainted paleyellow doorajar to asmall parking lot. i hear the talkingof ravens; i hear the mutedroaringContinue reading “for James Wright and the gentle wasting of life”
this time of year,there is fruitin the fields.fruitin the gardens. when I leavemy house,my pockets areempty,other than thebreast pocket ofmy shirt,in which I keepa stickfor my teeth. the human settlementhere is small,compact,easy to navigateby foot.people hereare generous,some call me“neighbor”and offer mefruit from their trees. the water hereis clean andplentiful, andthe fields are fullof fruit,this timeContinue reading “if mind has no aim, it is mahamudra”
we were bothtwenty fivewhen our dads died. his,in 2016.and mine,in 2006. he told me aboutthe seven hour long bus ridefrom the town he was inwith his uncle, backto the village of his birth,his father’s death.he told me of howhe cried so hardon the bus thatthe other passengerswere worried for his safety,worried he might choke,stop breathing.Continue reading “my man goes on a diet so switches his pizza topping from pepperoni to chicken”
my sister and iin a Chicagoof our pre-teens,pretending to beolder, other,different. she,in the back seatwith a feigned cigarette,and mein the driver’s seat,with a feigned understandingof how to drive. “shall i turn onthe radio?”i ask. glancingin the rearviewmirror, “willwe grow uptogether?will we befriends whenwe are older?will we one daylearn how to becool?”
there is only onetrue measure ofsuccess in this life. wealth is a false idoland “happiness”is an abstraction. whatever you dofor work ismostly meaningless. there is only onetrue measure ofsuccess in this lifeand it is this: can youmake it throughall your daysand nights andon your very last breath,still,feel love?
walking inand throughthe woodsyesterday andi notice;some bloomsare in fullwhile others arehesitantin their unfurling. not a single onecomparing itselfto another,each and allexpressingtheir own versionof beauty. all of them,beautiful.
anger is a habit,sadness is a habit,peace is a practice. the knife goes tothe left of the plate,i think,to the left of the plateand with the bladepointed in. anger is ahabit. one possible explanationfor road rage is thatwe are maxing out ourexecutive functions,piloting thousands ofpounds of glassand metal,our own bone weighingso much less.this leaves littleContinue reading “how to have goals when you believe in emptiness”
it’s hard for me to feela sense ofaccomplishment. be humble.look, listen,see, hear,no one caresif you hate yourlife. work harder.are you notrich? do you nothave friends? human is to bean individualbut yes alsoin community. to be human is todownplayrole of communityand exaggeratepersonal accomplishment. even if itdoesn’t feellike anything. i spent monthsbuilding trailsthrough a forest ofevergreen.the groundContinue reading “teeth are for rich people”
it isn’t uncommonto remove yourselffrom the group. it is commonto define yourselfboth bythe groups you seekacceptance from,and thoseyou refuse. it isn’t so common,to remove yourselfwithout anywhereto placethe body. it isn’t so uncommonto bring an absencewith your presence. yesterday i boughtapocryphal junk foodfrom a grocery store. i held thesoftwarmcardboard,the clingingwarmplastic,in one handwhile scooping junkwith the other.Continue reading “a form empties itself; a self forms from emptiness”
we thinkthe physics ofthis known universeare so solid. “this can’thappen”,we say,“the physics ofthis planetdo not allow forthis”. a single eyelashfloatson a shuffling breeze.bored of our certainty,the breeze settles itselfto a chuff,to a riffle,to a sigh. an eyelash losesits lilt,on a breezethat has lostits desire. inconsequential;the physicschange.impermanent;the Human wondersat its consequence. the blinking eyegives reliefto everyContinue reading “the self-consciousness of watching yourself”
carry the sandwichboard to the curb,to the street,to the breakin the sidewalk. it’s black, thissandwich board,with a white vinyl stickerdisplaying the name ofa store. set the sandwichboard on the smallpatch of grass,just next to thestreet, just up fromthe curb,a pace over fromthe sidewalk break. check the wind,adjust the splayof the sandwichboard to accommodatefor gusts.arrow onContinue reading “the sun is bright and standing still, it’s alright”
no not every dayis an amazing day. that’s ok. no maybe almost noneof your daysare amazing. that’s ok. a handful ofamazing daysmakes for arich lifetime. most days areaverage.normal.even mundane. today i placedfrozen chicken nuggetsand tater totsinto a smallpropane-firedoven. thrilling.i felt asmall thrillat this,this preparation ofjunk food,this acceptancethat, yes, i ammaking the choice toeat this food.Continue reading “i don’t climb mountain, mountain climbs me”
the windowsleakand the floorisn’t totally flatand there’s abig blue dieselengine down thereanyway andi ought tostart it andrun it andwhen i flip theengine togglethe oil pressurealarm goes offand i knownothingof enginesand nothingof physics andthe lighter i use tolight my propane stovejust ran out of fueland fuelis another thing idon’t understandall that well thoughwell enoughto know thatwhenContinue reading “like your friend who gets the sugar cereal and you stay the night at their house and at your home all you get is corn flakes”
a Springwalkin the latemorning. oceanall aroundme. from oneisland,acrossa bridge,to another. a frienddrives byin his truck.we bothwave.i have knownhimfor many years,we rarely seeeach otheranymore. a womanpushinga stroller,a dogleashedto it,takes apathi was hopingfor. i walk onbehind her,hesitate,and pivotbackthe wayi came. i did notwantthe discomfortof trailing her,speeding uptoovertake,the awkwardfew momentswhere we walkastride. the changein directionmattersnot. every pathcontainsbeauty.
oh, wow.onlytwothousandunited statesdollarsfor youtobuild with meawebsite? what aterrificvalue. aren’t youabillion dollarcompany? and yetstill, youmercilessly,vampirically,squeeeeeeeeze. “more”you frothand shudder andbelch, WENEEDMORE we have beentaught tocapitalize;devotion is apileof drooled-upondollars. salvationis through the eyeof a needle;a tax burdenof 0%;a fortunewith noincome. ours is asea fullof flash.mesmerized,we feed,until we areyankedfree.
he complainsabout the short statementhe wrote,how it disappeared,how he cannotwrite it again. she complainsthat he complainsso much.that small inconveniencesturn him into tempest. “just write itagain”,she thinks.it will only takea few minutes. he tries toremembertheir passwordforthe website,so he canagain writehis statementagain. he cannot. he sends hera message,“what isthe password?what isthe first concertyouever saw?” waiting,waiting, hethinks, “whycan’tContinue reading “with the increase in daylight caffeine becomes less possible”
a dolphinon atexas beachdiesafter beachgoerstry to ride it. a friend’s momdiesand i try tomake a joke,“welcome tothedeadparentsclub.” a man whowears shortsin winterputs a flagup on the backof his boat,the flagfeaturing acartoon skeletondraped in anAmerican flag,withautomatic riflescrossedin the background,and anaggressive statementin support ofguns. a womanwantsto get aphoto of herselfon the edge ofa cliff.fields oftaut,youngskin.a suggestion ofmaterialstretchedContinue reading “depression is mostly just a repetition of pattern”
morning is latethough has not yetdulled itselfinto afternoon. you walk alonga dock,wooden,floating. a sailboat istied to the dock,floating,fiberglass. the sailboatgrew itself ribs,in the Fall.in the Fallthe sailboatgrew ribs andskinned itself inthick plastic sheeting. all Winter long,that sailboat,fiberglass,floating,a cocoon. and thislate morning,not yet dull,not still shimmering,you walkalong a dock,wooden,floating. and you walkby a sailboat,fiberglass,floating. and theContinue reading “i watched the person walk into the coffee shop, return with two coffees, get back into the vehicle, and drive away”
you live righton the waterand you lookout of thetiny oval windownext to yoursmall tableand seeringson the water’ssurface that let youknow somethingjust dove down,or returned from,so you shiftyour bodyto scanyour entireallowanceof world,doled out to youfrom your tinyoval window(s). the clouds arelow today.they drift downto nearly touchthe small chopof today’s gentleocean. the clouds arelow today.they soon swallowwhateverContinue reading “i wore glasses and then contacts and then nothing at all”
i did not have anychildren. i did nothave even onedog. not a cat.i did not really everappreciate the worki was given. mostlyi havecomplaints. mostlyi havea body fullof organsthat pump andswish andburble andgrin. they all wantlove, too.it isn’t justfor the heart. mostlyi havethese words,filteringinto me,never oncemine, alwaysto leave me.nothing broken,in their vanishingwake.
in the muted eveninglight an unseentrumpet calls to allthe midwestern trains,lumbering andlamentingacross rusted fields. when i was stilla pre-teen, irode a train fromChicago toUpstate New York,waking into the greennight and a Clevelandtrain station. the belly long ago spilledover the belt,and the rust has grownso boldas to overtakeeven the surrounding fields. now, nowin the muted eveninglight,Continue reading “the land was sold to another buyer so the dream of farming it remains a seed”
there is no holein the wateryet the bird exitedthrough a hole. i see it,the hole,where the birddisappeared. it’s just water,this hole,like the waterthat surrounds it. a hole,characterized byabsence,disappears fromwaters’ surface. a bird,previously floating,disappears. i woke to floatfreely in thisthin atmosphere. i woke to practiceat forgiveness. a hole ischaracterized byabsence,yet herewe togetherare.
i have thesewhite countertopson my boatand i hatethem. i go to all sorts oflengths to try tokeep them“clean”. when i grindcoffeein themorning,i lay downcutting boardsandpaper towels,in an effort tocatch theinevitableerrantcoffeegrounds. but inevercatch themall.and thewhite countertopis alwaysspeckled. at timesi getinto aparalysisabout this,feelingtotally defeatedby my inabilityto do even the mostbasic of tasks,so i letdishes pile upand don’tContinue reading “i write to her but am not capable of seeing her name so quickly delete her reply”
tire tracks in the snowshow me wherei backed in,pulled out.tire tracks in the snowmake beautiful loops,graceful arcs. this is all a sequenceof patterns, eventhe chaotic parts. i wake again toan emptinessthat i’ve not yet learnedto fill. thissilence is sometimeshollow, soi stuff it with cotton. a man i’ve spent more thana decade withthough never met,he speaksContinue reading “the dog takes itself for a walk”
in the pale ofa new Spring,old menin sighingbaseball capseat hotdogsin a parking lotbehind the firehall. steam fromgrilled meat. steam fromlungs. the heart isa volunteer,it leapslike flamefrom lashand tongue.
i make listsin small pocket-sizednotebooks. i put boxesnext to the wordsi write, boxesthat allow me tomake an X ora checkmark,so that i canplainly seemy accomplishments. this weekthe small notebooktells me todo some researchon fermented beverages.tells me tofind a floor maton which towipe my shows. this weekthe small notebooktells me to gothrough my clothes,weed out thatContinue reading “had i known you were bringing a terrified teenager, i likely would have worn different pants”
tomorrow morningi wake to forty. twenty years ofmy lifewere spentin some form ofalcoholic haze. forty years ofmy lifehave been spenttrying to get high. i used tospin arounduntil i couldn’tsee straight.i used toeat until i couldn’tmove. iused to figureout ways towatch moviesandlisten to musicthat my parents triedto forbid. i have alwayswantedmore thani have.and tomorrowwill comeand iContinue reading “forty in less than a day”
we like tomeasure thingsso weinvented time. it seems likemaybewe have agood bit of it,time, butit goes pretty quick. we give awayour timeso that we can begiven moneyin return. we take thismoney anduse it to try tobuy back ourtime. and time,invented.and money,invented.butwe haven’t yetreally figured outhow to getmore time. we think ourselvesimpoverishedwhen we havevery little money,thoughContinue reading “it gets a little lonely in the expansive evening”
this morningthe store was out ofwhole milk soi bought cream. in the parking loti walked towardsthe oceanandthe womanwith the coarse hairrode her bike inthe opposite direction. she had ayellow waterproof bagattached to herbike.she appeared torecognize me soi started toraise my arm inresponse,casuallystuffingmy handbackintomy pocketonceirealized shedidn’t noticeme, wasonly smilingin the directionofa groupofbirds. i smile atthe birds.Continue reading “some people forget where they live so they put flags on their vehicles to remind them”
social media has taught methat everyone isfamous and beautifuland always doingamazing stunningfascinating importantthings. we all like tohave funand we all like toeat good foodand we all feelbadly about ourselvessometimes. and sometimeswe feel greatand we like to showhow great we feelby showing ourteeth orour breastsor our hair orour shining hairless heads. we are all sadand weContinue reading “social media taught me that i am human”
your right ear ispluggedso you look forhydrogen peroxide. you turn the music uplouder,half-fascinated bythe muted rumblein your Spring-plugged ear.half-disgusted. you look forhydrogen peroxideas it is said to helploose a plugged earand while youdo not find ityou do finda diminutive torch;the type used forcrafts andcreme brûléeandthe smoking ofillicit drugs. it is Spring andyou have just daysContinue reading “the next day we nearly slid your gold Toyota Camry off a thickly mudded road”
feeling sorryfor myself,i did not noticethe streak of yellow,a small birdfrozen in flight,fall to the ground. delighted,in flightandin fall.
two cups of coffee sonow i feel that there issomethingi am to do. the weather forecastblinks benignlyfrom the stillness ofmy phone screen.it tells me toexpect an opulenceof clouds,though not toworry abouta drenching. the windows areso streaked withfalling water,i cannot tellif it is raining oronly pregnantwith the possibility. i plan my clothing;this is what it isiContinue reading “Valentines Day in the Double Deuce”
it’s your birthday.the last day of your job.or the first day.it’s the day youtwist in your seat (one small popcoming from your backas you turn,not like whenyou were younger,and you could get yourentire spineto crack when you twisted) and look backat the empty housethat was once fullas your home. you are headed toa new town.Continue reading “the previous record for rain was just smashed by more than quadruple”
disappoint a friend.your mom walks alonefrom the auto mechanic,to the coffee shop.bagel and coffee,black,and then backto pick up her car. you spend all morning standing up,moving your limbs anddigits about, sitting down.sitting down blurs to laying down.lying down.never can you keepthe difference straight. disappoint a friend,she thinks you took herwords out of context,she thinks sheContinue reading “i am not afraid of virtual reality”
i ask a friend ifher childrenhelp her to feellife is meaningful. “no”,she responds.“creating thingshelps me feelmy life is meaningful”,she says,and i wonderhow it isher kidscame to be. sitting is an actionso to sitis to do.even those withthe standing desks,looking downand overtheir kneecapsat the sedentarily seated,even they willfinish their workdayand fold themselvesinto some formof support. sittingContinue reading “the parasite inside me is hidden but rarely is it unseen”
goes down into partially finished basement, plugs into power, plugs into amplification, uses sticks to beat rhythmically on drums. grows facial hair long; facial hair does not come in uniformly. devotes to monasticism, mysticism, ritual of contemplation, organization of human through spiritual avenues, channels, tributaries. not really being paid for this, well, being paid butContinue reading ““that’s about all i can do without losing my mind””
the man droveby in an old whiteford pickup anda broken beard. the sun wasbehind me soi could lookdirectly at him. when he lookedmy way allhe saw wasthe nothingness ofbrilliance. his eyesshaded, andhis beardbroken. to the lay personit seems his beard isneatly trimmed,but i, with the sunat my backallowing me anunbroken stare,i can see thatthe trimmedContinue reading “drink lemon balm tea every day and take walks”
how does onetalk to someone? someone winsawardsand becomesa person. someone elseis a vacantlot. ohhow i wishto be nothing,anything,and thislot.
most of the ice has meltedbut still we are providedample opportunityfor a fall. when i am at worki do not much want to doanything.not much of anythingother than be there. when the day is no longerrequiring me to work,then i can considerdoing somethingother than only being. we tell tales of antsand look pridefullyat their industriousContinue reading “it can be difficult to make friends when you are a know-it-all”
it could be thati like the symbolismof a treadmill,all that pantomimed running,going nowhere. isn’t this what it isto be finally ridof hope?not in a disheartened way,no, butthe hopelessness of beingflung fully open? and of course havingnowhere to getis not to say that there isnowhere to go. yesterday,i walked deep into a fjord,maybe it’s really justContinue reading “ice on a Silver Bay sidewalk; a heart of spruce and pine”
the morningspread its cloudslate into the afternoon. I don’t mind,in fact often prefer,the close comfortof covering cloudto the vertigoof a wide open sky. late this afternoon,i painted a blue dooryellow, the blue skyreappearing,with every brushstroke. i do not bemoanthe sun, even if itcauses me to reddenwith the embarrassmentof my life. perhaps, withguidance,i will learn tofeelContinue reading “there’s a 3% fee on every donation but the kindness of it comes through quietly unfettered”
the lid won’t go back on.i want to force it. instead, i stop.slowly line upthe threads, andscrew it back into place. the lid, it’s sticky.it wears a dentfrom the last timeit got stuck, andi slammed it down,thinking that would help itre-home itself. i was wrong. the lid, still askew,and now dented. now dented,still sticky,the lidContinue reading “the lid is pink and the container is glass and inside it, the ginger is yellow and dry”
used to be we rana lot of things offof steam. we didn’t run outof steam, butwe did find better, or at leastmore profitable, ways to generateour motion.our motion, so that we can feelsome sense of progress. and progress, sothat we can feelourselves toexist. used to be we foundourselves to matter by using steam. we haven’tContinue reading “the last time i saw that man he shared with me his cocaine and fish”
an icicle hangson in the sun.it elongatesin the sun.it sharpens inthe sun. an icicle growsresolute in the moon.it gathersitself in the moon.it spreadsout in the moon. an icicle hangson in the wind.it growsangular in the wind.it emboldens to vocalin the wind. the icicle isfragile.the icicle isbrief.the iciclefalls,draws blood,and becomes waterto clear it away.
it’s a struggleto modulatethe volume ofmy voice. maybe,now, moreso, withthe lessening ofgatherings,now, withthe increased timespent alone. hourspile themselvesconvivially atopeach other;i standatoptheir currentformation, asyears. yearsi’ve beenmostlyspeaking insidemy head.and withoutthe wincing eyesof others,i find itdifficultto modulatethe volumeof my voice. many times,i do not feelmyselfto be toovoluble.sometimes,even i balkat the sharptreble ball bearingof my voice. rising. rising likeContinue reading “a looped piano by a human named Emily”
walking a dogthrough a parktall with totem poles,singing with trees. walking a dogit stops to nose,i stop too. we walk togetheralong a brackishsection of river.there are birdsfloating alongin the water. “look”i say to the dog,“look,there are ducks”. the dog looksat me,the dog glancestowards the water.the dog nosesthe base of a tree. “i don’t actually knowifContinue reading “a group of ravens with plumage puffed to the cold ate garbage unabashedly and stared at me as i got into a car”
i take somethingthat hurts meand i warm itin my hands. if it wants toturn brieflybeautiful,i openmy hands. if it wants tocurl tightlyinto a ball,i openmy hands.
i said the words“my dad has been deadfor more than16 years”and this could only bemade palatable bya synthesizerbeing played atthe same time. more than 16 years isa long timebut not as long asdeath so it isa requirement thatthe synthesizerplay a note ora sound ora hum andgive itself toa sustaining. 16 years long anddeath short andtheContinue reading “i had a baby with a woman who makes enough money playing abstract electronic music so that i don’t have to get a job and can put the baby in a sling or a pouch and walk around with it all the time”
in the blackmorning i am unableto see. waitingto dilate, a whitebird becomes ghostly,floating on ocean’sunseen skin.seeing me,the bird beatsitself into flight.a mirror onceclung to athin footing ofwall. it isno longer there.its memory isgray, its shadowis a mottled brown. my life is motionlesslike the mountains.their heads lostin white.their shoulders takenfrom green intoblack. i returnto cold colorlesswaiting,Continue reading “winter on the docks”
still i strugglewith believing other peopleare real. i went runningthis morningand that wasn’t sofun but i feltgood most of theday afterwards andthis feels importantto me.feels importantto otherpeople. but it is not. still i strugglewith recognizing;things that areimportantto me arevery often barelydiscernible toothers. today i tolda friend,“i enjoy looking atthe surrounding mountains;they look so big, butreallyContinue reading ““you should get one. it’s a great place for those kind of self-oriented musings.””
and sometimesthe sadness is socrushing youjust levitate. no, nothinghappened.you aresliding thickly into bed,and you arehappy to be doing so.the room isquite cool likeyou like it anddark like youlike it andthe bed is cold enoughto bring your skin toa densely hillock’dtexture. but,you like this,too. and know thatsoon your body willheat the small denyou make of theContinue reading “i’ve seen this film at least a dozen times but tomorrow will be only the second time seeing it on the big screen”
outside it israinon top ofsnow. walking, istruggle to maintainmy footing. inside,it is anage-d couplein the morning.bathingin their insidelight. slipping,outside, ilook inside;one of the pairsitsin a morning chair.the other,lets fingernailsslipalong offered back. outside,it is rainon top of snow. outside,it ishard to maintainfooting. inside,it is a sharing,unobtrusive,kindness.not intended formy consumption. outside,eyes do not pry,no,they are acceptinglike aContinue reading “Winter in the archipelago”
i want to putmy feetexactly whereher feetare, buther feetare there, soi can notreplace them withmine. her pants area velveteen olive greenand she rolls likeAA baseball jawfull of chaw.she rolls as sheundulatesupon the spinningribbon that i wantfor myself. so i scootand find a seata few feetfrom her,sneakingoccasional glancesat the rolling olivesof her treading. a woman comesContinue reading “the room is silent save for all the heaviness of breath”
all day long andwell through my nightsthere are storiesbeing toldin my mind. i don’thave a mind forstories. some people takeone job andthey do thatjob, a jobfor money, they dothat one job fortheir whole working life.some people takejob after job afterjob, working fortheir whole life.i read or heard orwas told a storyabout how around40% of peoplehateContinue reading “i can’t title this exactly as i want to as it might give too much away and i may pay both a literal and figurative price (meter reader walks the dock and i note the time)”
i sent USD$100to Africa andmy man bought foodfor his family andput electricityto his house. warm, i amwarm enoughin a used andinsulated long sleeve,wool socks anddenim. warmenough to sit hereunder pulsing lights andwrite about hell. hell is onlythe breadth of a hair,yes? ormaybe that isthe distance betweenheaven and hell.who of us issurprisedthat thiswhole smearing planetis ableContinue reading “you can try to catch the fish so long as you take the barb from the hook”
the dog is inpain. the dogdoes not complain. the dog takesa pill every morning,robed in peanut butter.the dog is happyfor the treat.the dog does notspit out the pill. the dog is inpain. the dogdoes not complain. the dog greets peopleas it passes,when we go fora walk alongthe sea.the dog leapsfrom the car whenwe arrive,the dogContinue reading “animals and their animals”
as i amno painter,i imagine itto be likelaying paint. maybe a coator twocan get youthe coverageyou seek,but it isthroughrepeated layeringsthat nuance ishewn. is that amixing ofmetaphors? admiring the razorstraight lines,at the edgeswhere ceilingand wall meet,i say, “nice jobwith the tape”, thinkingone can only keepsplatter at bayin this way. “i did notuse anytape, onlya steady hand”,Continue reading “a deer neck in a plastic bag, still plenty of meat on it”
coral reaches up,bone white andgleaming. the sea rises,and yet the coralreaches up,bleached. on our patches of landwe keep ourselvessafe from reach.we fly flags andsew patchesonto our outer layers,identifying ourselvesas member. remember,the ship didn’t failin its duty,it was the coralthat reached up,its thousand tiny hands,not clinging butreaching. on our patchesof land, patcheson our sleeves,we keep ourselvessafeContinue reading “sometimes it’s hard to stay asleep in the presence of all this swelling”
a woman runs ona treadmill, the sameone every time. she wearsthe samepurple bluetank top.the samecropped blackpants. once she getsto running, shemoans and shrieksas though orgasmic. i turn up the soundin my ears,trying to drownout her exhortations. many years agoi walked along adry brown wooden dock.it was warm andi wore shorts.my rubber boots,folded downto the ankle.aContinue reading “the animal wants badly to be pet but is too afraid to get close enough to allow it”
i can’t even counthow many other fellaswalked just like me,listened to thissame songjust like me,felt aggressive anddespairingjust like me. hands scritch upin the way ofmid-90s murder rapChicago, gangson every street,families on every street. i can’t even countthe families whostood in the alleywayand pointedtheir weapons downtoward the park,down the green corridorof stinking Summer heat,when it’s soContinue reading ““i’m starting out my day…with a chopper””
i wonder howimportant i would feel ifi felt important? three days agoi chewed thin stripsof deer meatfrom oven-roasted neck bones,which i had forgotten aboutin my propane-fired stove.i had placed themin the stoveand then leftto help a man apply acoat of plastic sheetingto his sailboat,a protectantfrom the Winterand its season of gifts.he offered me money,which iContinue reading “the heart hangs from the rafters, it is blue and in need of a welding”
the sun looksweak in the sky,muted to impotencebehind season and cloud.but it is not.the sun is alwaysthe same, it’s strengthalways cataclysmic. eventually, so i amtold, it willburn itself out.what a relief. the moon smirksat the sun’s rage,its might, itsearnest, dutiful,belief. its exhaustion.the moon is no bully.it presents the sun withunfailing reflection,a place to put itself.peopleContinue reading “there are so few reasons, really.”
today maybe it isBuddha i disappoint.i am well-versed inJesus’ mild exasperation,my inability toproperly prostrate,the joyful noises thatdo not come. i was for so longso unafraid oftotal annihilation.now, i am afraidof a cupof caffeinated coffee. Buddha encourages meto keep myself fromthat chemical excitement,though probably ihave that wrong. terrified, i stareat my coffee grinder.in frozen despairi lookContinue reading “after slipping several times, i’ve learned to step cautiously into the floating morning”
a creative godhas given me manywalls upon whichto hang myself. it’s all a question offraming,isn’t it.the corner ofa building,whether or notyou believe insuch things asdisembodied hopes,dreams, thisis one such placethey live;the cornerof a building. a woman tells me,“you must be livingas you dofor the adventure of it!”,and yes, this isa way to frame it. twoContinue reading “there are two colors in my head”
“you’re a lot nicerin person”, shesays to me,says to mein an email. what would haveonce beena letter. we spentan hour, maybetwo,in the odd sprawlof a surprise garden,tucked quietlybehind a bakery,on the sideof a country road. i saw lovein her eyes andi have loveon my lips.the former,perhapsonly illusion.the latter,given to herbriefly, and thentakenby the wind. iContinue reading “a series of temporary homes”
i never cared muchfor birds.which isn’t to sayi did not carefor them,about them,just thati did not needto know their names. their migratory patterns,a happy mysteryto me. me,blissfulin my ignorance,unaware ofwhat i wasunaware of. now i findmyself wantingto look at birdsmore closely.now i findthat i might wantto look at birds withyou, too. i don’t want totalkContinue reading “yesterday i rode my bike to a spring and filled a plastic jug full of its water”
last night’s words wentunwritten. the computer batterydiedand i did not haveelectricityfor charge.yes, i had plentyof paper and ink,though did notuse them.for someoneof my age,perhapsit is that writing withpen and paperis associated withschool and compulsion.neither did i ever muchenjoy.though i call thiswritinga compulsion,this writingthat i do nowon my aging computer,its brief battery. too charged,i switch morningcupContinue reading “it’s not stealing it’s borrowing so i borrow a hose from down the dock to fill freshwater into leaking freshwater tank, a good portion of which will leak and bilge pump out into the sea”
never is it not a timefor warming or cooling.always it is time andalways it is warmingor cooling. it is warming to me,to see the snowdistant on mountain peak.warming like the planet itself,so we are told.some disbelieve these tales,though the instrumentsthat measure and readsuch things, theirs isa music not given tothe persuasion of emotion.these instruments tellContinue reading “a lull between strokes of wind; late Fall in the archipelago”
the only place i’ve ever seen a“friends don’t let friendseat farmed salmon”bumper sticker out in the wild(other than Sitka)was in New Paltz.i lived outside ofHolland Patentfor a few years,in a stretch of rollingdairy land outside of Utica.Utica, an agingspot of rust.cheesemaking acquaintancesin Pawletbrought me downto areas aroundGranville,and further onto the odd animalabusing perversion ofSaratoga Springs.humans,Continue reading “we exchanged a message a piece and then took ourselves back to ghost”
this is an evergreen town,though the hemlock sweepingup the hillside has goneto brown. at the hungerof a worm, maybea beetle. this is a town of mountainsthat masquerade as hill.let’s walk up the hill, upto where our lungs burnand our nose runs with the alpine wind. up the hillthrough the evergreens.sleeping bear hidden,waking bear hidden.down inContinue reading “the morning is cold and moody. it hails and rains and glows in a muted marigold.”
the boat is fullof steam.as, perhaps,am i. sloshing,certainly. asis the oceani float upon.all of us,floating. the mostboastfuland confident,those are theones who areleast,ormaybe mostaware,ofthe tenuousnessof this rock. solidity? wellyes,a rockwill take usupon it.yes,a rock willhide wellits slow sink. evenstill,it floats.this rock,ourmeat’dbodies uponit. at nightthe oceansometimesknocks andi burrowinto dreamandforget my wakingself. inmorning the oceansighs and the oceanwhispersContinue reading “she’s too young which means of course that you are too old and still you are full of steam and only wish yourself water”
i want to photographthe poem“Laguna Blues”by Charles Wright,send it to a friend. the book i havethat contains it,it splits the poemacross two pages,making it impossiblefor me to capture itin the way thati desire. i copy and pastethe poem froma webpage,the line breaksand stanzas,shattered andunkempt. “something’s off-keyin my mind.whatever it is,it bothers meall the time”.
i’ve felt hungertowards you,in different ways. many times,i’ve wantedyour body,thinkingthe pleasure derived from itmight somehow allow meto feel pleasure inmy own.that by consumingyou, imight becomevaluable. now, i eatyour bread made ofholiday magic, ringingbells many no longerhear,i myself struggleto hear.and ifeel a shift inmy appetite foryou.from feast offlesh to divine kindnessof friendship. thank you,for remaining withContinue reading “walking home through the woods from the post office i pass an old coworker in a kayak and talk too loudly and scare away the birds he was quietly paddling to go see”
how does one start?a bird in the harbor,not one of theubiquitous gulls,and no, nothingagainst them.but a bird in the harbor.the water israinbow’d with oiland dimpledto a thousand smileswith Fall rainfall.and a birdwith a long,curved neck.sleek, designerscreate kitchen faucetsto shadow what the birdnaturally possess.a sleek curved neckand a long beak,tapering down toa fine point,though it doesContinue reading “most all of it mostly feels like trick, like sleight of hand, like last night’s dream; in an airport, unaware of where i’m going, but knowing i am to go”
with 9000 people in thiscobbled town, i find itmildly astoundingthat zero of them come into this small shopthat i wedge myselfinto it, for 3 hours,on a winded thursdayevening in the Fall. it rains for a while and thentakes a break.the wind picks up and thensets back down. have i nothing,that even one personmight find worthyContinue reading “i realized a wire had become disconnected from the bilge pump and that by touching the two wires together the pump again worked and i don’t think i’ve ever felt more proud in my life”
we grow our childrenlike we grow our lawns;useless but pretty, alwaysin need of a cut.i speak to a woman,banded and brightin hammered bronze,i tell her,“but i don’t really wearearrings anymore”,and today, todaywhile walking pastan outdoor market,i ask, “are these discsmade from clay? painted,will the paint runin the rain?”.as if i fear being fled.as though itContinue reading “farmers market in early-mid-september in bucolic college town along the shores of a lake and the sun is on fire but no does not burn”
a short dockin a low tide.brown bear,alone, walksa temporary beach.gracefulin its searchfor shellfish. aluminum skiff andthree hoods,the last oneintended to proofagainst water.and all this waterdoes, is support. into gray,flanked by green,rain drivingagainst wrinkledforehead, squintedeyes. what isthe point ofthese brows?through them,blonde, a tingeof gold,i can see,despite the rain.driving. into the bodyof bay, windwashing waterto small swell.anContinue reading “katlian bay in early september; it is a rainforest, it does as it is called to do”
if i could speakwith music,maybe i couldtranslate feelinginto understanding. were i able totalk in color,it might bethis would allow methe power ofconveyance. it isn’t fair oraccurate,to say these wordsare inadequate,no.these words areall i have andyes, these wordsdo not seem to carryall i ask of them. spilling, overthe sides,as they go. it reminds me ofsteeples, steeplesweContinue reading “all of the trees are straight and tall and their tops bow gently to the sky”
i am held closeon my right, a fewfeet of wooden floor,a tiny cast ironwoodstove, heat. i am given todrift on my left,1/4 inch stiffnessof fiberglass, blueblooming cold,then the sea. i feel the beseechof sea,its echo of cold,pulling me frommyself. i feel the closenessof heat,sun on wood,all of it warbling. it keeps meto myself, justas theContinue reading “instead of depression, dowels; sunshine in October”
a woman i sort of lovedgot married this weekend,so i wrote her a poem.i will send it to her todayin an email she lived with mewhen she was 21and i was maybe 31.she dated guys whoi thought were blowhardsand she was in love with meand wanted to have sex with mebut we never did iContinue reading “i talk to my friend about getting drunk and love, he stops responding once we move from drunkenness to love”
one windowbrings attention toshelves drapedwith the skin ofdead animals.above it,the windowobscured by swirlsof flowering plants.hanging from the porch,tendrils driftin the Fall breeze,held against their falling.below,hanging fromthe window’d shelves,empty paws danglein their stillness,long ago having chasedthemselves away. the street is stilldamp despite a morningpulled taut byblue sky. in 1998,in a stretchof forest,your great friend layin aContinue reading “i roamed around a tiny island town and took photos in a morning of late Fall”
are you looking for god?do you search for magicin your waking day?do you cling to dream,seeking the stars that hidebehind sleep’s pale mist? i think i would like tofall in love again. yes,love does maybe feellike magic. but what do iknow of this? i have so littleunderstandingof any of life’s workings,it all feels like magictoContinue reading “if i don’t floss and brush my teeth early in the evening, i’ll just end up eating and eating long after my caloric needs have been met”
today i learneda writer i like namedHanifwas awarded aMacArthur fellowship,commonly known as a“genius grant”.he gets $625,000paid out over the course of5 years,for his genius.this is moneywell spent,as Hanif isa genius. i read his postregarding this award,and in it he spoke ofthe honor he feelsin joining two other peoplefrom his home town ofColumbus, Ohio,two other peopleContinue reading “a woman who despised me for the need she had, first introduced me to a writer who has stayed with me long after that woman stopped returning my emails”
there’s a spiderin the corner,an inchfrom the floor. i didn’t reactwith acool reactionin the new meditationgroup i joinedand now i willmeditateon beinguncool. there’s a spiderin the cornerof the bathroomat the small shop iwork at.it is nearthe sink. it is suggestedi try to do100 daysin a rowof aguided meditation,a “sit”,and i canpost my thoughtsabout this,or trytoContinue reading “i think the gold colored wool shirt i am wearing is cool but my lumpy body, decidedly less so”
my mouth,sensitiveto heatfrom the burningit enduredyesterdayevening. my mouthtaking blameforimpatience,my hand,unable to waitfor frozen pizzaturned moltenin a propane-firedoven, to cool. my hand,saintly,without faulteven now,as it tries toforce hot coffeeinto my burnedmouth. mouth, youare the vehiclei demandwith myconsumptivedesires. mouth, youtalk toomuch. mouth,your skin isso thin. mouth,your smile istoo broad, tooweak, too upsidedown. eventhe teethyou house,theyrequire so muchmaintenance.Continue reading “on sunny days i am a loser”
some people thinkthe earth is flat.some people thinksystemic racism isn’t real.some people thinkthat being asked towear a maskis oppression andthat their freedomallows them to dictatewhat they do withtheir body, and alsoyour body, shouldyour body containa uterus. and yes we area species plaguedby amnesia, alwaysforgetting the absurditieswe repeat—today,some wish to pillory otherswho use their mosteducated effortsContinue reading “i am unsure how it feels but am certain that i have returned”
long black hair pulledloosely back, hangsnearly to the waist.long black hair shiningas though wet.feet, socked,without shoe.she walks up the aisle,bouncing lightlyon her toes.pivot,slight bounce,return. engines roar mildly,bathing the cylinderin surreality.like thinkingwrapped in gauze,the silent voiceof your interior,urged to shout. long black hair,unconcernedin its length,dryin its sheen.love,love dripped like thatonce, maybe more.in the past,love dripped ripeandContinue reading “an airplane over the american west; feeling uneasy with calm”
i attach a hose toa spigoton a wooden dock,floating.placing the open endof the hoseinto the receiving portfor the vessel’s fresh watertanks, i turnthe spigot on. a few hours ago,i turnedthe faucet for my sink,filling a glasswith water. water,that has been throughmany, versionsand vessels,to get to me. i add tincturedhawthornand motherwortto water glass,drink it all down.Continue reading “your phone says you are in, or at least from, western washington, but not seattle”
you can fita lot of yourselfin a bottle. you can cramalmost all ofwho you areinto a can. the lip ofa bottle,so round andalluring.so slickagainst the purchaseof a pulling hand. the rim ofa can,it catchesthe evening lightjust right.draws youfurther in,even as its edgecuts you. use cautionaround bottles andcans, aroundswollen lipsand edgesthat glint likesharpened tooth. it takesContinue reading “and today is fruit of 3 barren years; sobriety in a time of plenty”
the tools thatbroke this fastnow bubble in belly.kitchen counter top,white, bears crumbs,wears stains.the smaller the space,the more it callsfor clean. thatsponge was brieflyyellow and green,a smiling bruise,now it is cloakedunabashedly in its duty;coffee ground brown andshallow exhalation gray.white kitchencountertops, speckledlike an egg, likea space wheresomethingmight grow. did i mention?i grew a broken fastat this kitchenContinue reading “my friend tells me that the oddities of my titles makes it difficult to catalogue; the houses of our names are many-chambered”
last night wasa screened porchin an eastern state.pizza made from hand.tongues working to furtherthings along. last night,an encouragement,“your best voiceis your conversational voice,you should writemore in that”. my tongue, busywith the pizza andbusy with the wallsinside my mouth.is this wherethe wall is?is this whythe voice in my headis perceived asdifferent from the voicethat escapes me?Continue reading “i’m supposed to ask permission to use people’s names when i write but how often have i done what i am supposed to?”
andnow thati haveeatenmy dinner,i wantsomethingsweet. and now thati havewokenfrom mysleep, i wantsomeoneto talkto. andnow that ihavegreeted myselfwithfatigue,i wantsomeexcitement. and now thati have donetaskslabeled “work”,i wantmoney. andnowthati havemoney,i wantmore. and nowthati have, iwant.
gauzy pale blinds,incandescentfrom morning’s rise.a wood framed window,a few inches opento the breeze.a screen for breathing.a bush just beyond,its motion close,nearly imperceptible.a tree in the short stretchof front yard, animatedtowards a liveliness not knownhere, closer to the ground. beyond this,across a street,another yard,behind another house,another tree,pale silver greenagainst mottled cloudsof September.it is an athlete,unrestrictedin itsContinue reading “they are heading to Nevada so i take them to the airport and return to the quiet kindness of their home they share with me”
do not talk about it;no one wants to hear. live on a boat;understand there isa differencebetween 12v and110v electricalpower. do notunderstand whatthat difference is. live on an island;recall what it felt liketo choke on panicand remember whatit felt like tofeel your ribspulverizeunder atmospheric oceansof despair anddon’t forget thattaking a drive cansometimes be the bestmedicine andContinue reading “all i do is kill time until i can eat again”
my hands, pink,once calloused, nowsoft, my handswear red in the bloodblister gifted me by wood,handle of maul. wood,split for heat, though it callsout in a dry, cracking,cough. splitting,more like a ring,a howlingbell. and my hands,pink, they wear redfrom beets. beets,shorn of their greens,soaking a yellow cedarcutting board in a purpleexuberance.have you heard?about beets andnitric oxide?howContinue reading “they both started out about the same but one deepened to near black and the other pale’d itself to translucent pink rose”
fading brown woodwraps itself arounda wooden frame.atop it all,a shinglingof slate grayand moss,a gutterclinging lazilyto the edge. human hands,some of ithuman hands,though not all,but human handsaffix a sign,plastic black withorange lettering,shouting“No Trespassing”,to all who mightwander by. up there,up there in thatgutter, a plant(not by human hands)is unbotheredin the wind.it sways and stills,it flutters andcomes gentlytoContinue reading “katlian street in late august and a heathered black wool zip neck, too warm, carried in a curled palm”
a clock uses birdcallto fulfill its duty ofproclaiming hand-swept time. listening to music,the synthesizer isincongruous,discordant, tomechanized birdcall. i blame it on Time. a friend is a new father,he sits in a chairwith his newly born baby.baby sleeps, newbornfather smiles. hewears glasses,the father, andi use my own sightto admire hisdedicationto vision. a terror anda joyous bursttravelContinue reading “euphemism and lechery like lukewarm tea like blazing 60 degree heat like fog bank rolling in expecting welcome and receiving only up-turned hoods”
earlier i read a poemby Charles Wright.i am now unable tofind it, to mine itfor quote. something,something about…even that escapes me,even paraphraseis out of my reach.a brain, scrambled,despite all the lion’s mane,ginkgo, gotu kola. maybei am just hungry,thinking of eggs. always,it seems, alwaysi am hungry.i went into a bookstoreearlier, no, that was notwere i readContinue reading “i spoke to Zach about building shelving and counter with wood, he, telling me, “the moisture content of the wood will help determine what can be built””
mourning on a dock.next to piling, lowtide, taking. stilli stood, still. next to barnaclesand sea stars.next to muscles,closed tightin their indigo strength. a piling,a woodendock made ofoverlapping crosses,a tide takingfrom usour mourning. and it was morningon a dock,i had grownso tall overnight.now towering,i towered overpiling. long ago, ormaybe onlymoments before,barnacles andsea stars,withered in their waiting,returnedContinue reading “eliason harbor in late august, a few days past year’s last minus tide”
yesterday i strungsmall orbs, matte graylabradorite, onto dustygolden yellow waxedtwine. i’ve never beentoo dextrous, sostruggled with the smallknots i tied fore and aft ofeach small stone. i had to connectmore than onepiece of twine,dusty,golden,yellow,in order to completethe stringing of thesesmall stones. worriedat the strength ofthese connections,i tied double and tripleknots, singed themwith a quick biteContinue reading “Andrew picks me up in his truck and we go out to the boat launch to launch his boat and he pulls gear in search of halibut while i stand there and take photos and sway on sea legs through my mind”
now,it rains. thick clear vinyland fiberglassand blue canvaskeep me coveredfrom this wetting,though i am opento it. orrather, i amon a vessel withan openingto all this rain. a windswept dropor two, exclaimupon my leg,naked, fromthe knee down. earlier, when i waswalking andit was onlymisting, iwalked by aflowering bush,its smell,startlingly sweet.it shares itslittle patch of landwith aContinue reading “last i saw Trevor he was walking in the rain without a raincoat, now i see him on the back deck of Mike’s old wooden troller and it is still raining but he is dry”
a teenageron a boatin an Alaskan bay,i used a cell phoneto call homeonce a week.terrified,terrified i grippedthe phone,convinced it wouldslip from my hand.my voice garbledas it was lostto the sea. on a flat roofin northern Vermont,along a long lakewith hazy viewsof New York’sUpstate mountains,i placed feeton new shingles,black as the nightsky. the night sky,above me,Continue reading “having just replaced the brake pads on my bicycle’s mechanical disc brakes, i now needn’t apply as much pressure when i want to slow down”
a fat manin aloose shirtandshorts,sweats in thebarely 60 degreeAugust day.he’s pulling a rampfrom the back endof a box truck.he’s deliveringpalleted food to acoffee shop. inside, derisionand sadnessand just a bit ofchuckling joy.inside,were itset it to music ormoving picture,maybe thismight draw awider audience.outside;the audience.inside;whatever isthere,moving through.set to musicor tomoving picture.outside,audience. andinside, whatmoves through.perhaps these areone, andtheContinue reading “while the man was swollen with excess fat he was also unloading a truck and while all of this happened the truck idly ran”
maybe it is importantto rememberdifficult days,even or especiallywhen all we want is toforget. perhapsit is honoring toremember the daywhen despair andrage transformeda giving starinto a godof blindness andburning—peoplewalk by toastedamber and smellingof butter.their smiles brandishedlike small arms,and all those tombstonesboasting loudly from behindtheir fat-slicked lips. maybe what you cando is you cantake some photos orwriteContinue reading “your friend brings his brother to your boat and this brother forgets his water bottle so returns minutes after leaving and you give him the water bottle and also a bag of trash to take to the parking lot dumpsters”
the ink i pressedrepeatedly overand over repeatedlyinto my skin,over and overrepeatedlyinto my skin the inkpressed overand over into myskin repeatedlyby a needlea small needleinto my skinover and overink repeatedlyinkinto my skinover andover the inki dipped upwith a needlerepeatedlyand over and overpressed it repeatedlyinto my skinover and overthe ink is now onthe oddly shapedwhite formica tablewithContinue reading “the planet is getting hot and ya that might be “bad” for many species including humans if we are to say “extinction” and “bad” are synonymous but to the planet a desert is no more bad or good than a glacier and this is what you call luck”
there’s only so muchtime to get itdown, to get itdone, to do it. the land moverstarts moving landin the morning,when fistlegally allowed.this is asmall town,but still there arestatutes andordinances. stillthere are timeswhen even wedeem explosive removalof earthto be toomuch. toomuch, the flat tireproved to betoo much.it wasn’t therusted frameor thewindshield wipermotor thatabruptly seized.those could befixed;Continue reading “three bears shot to death and plastic cans cannot possibly contain all that we desire and then tire of”
it’s hard for meto sit cross-legged. i sit cross-leggedon a hard wooden floor.my legs quiver,taught in their bend.the floor,wooden,softened by asmall cushionmade of buckwheat.earlier, i hadworried, “i havenothing moreto say”. a jackhammerprods meat my back.it may as well bea woodpecker. i place a glassof water at mywooden side,floored, andmake mental noteof its presence.soon after,i stand,Continue reading “i’m elated. i am terrified. i hope for what i see, when i get there”
visit https://feedlitmag.com/ to see this poem. Issue 2.27
heart, i have lentyou to grieffor long enough.no, there is nothingwrong with grief,but for now i havebeen given only thisone heart,and it ought not stayswollen in looking poolsfor its entirety. grief, you aregolden on the hills?you are ochreon the plains?the rust, the rustat shoreline, refusefrom human endeavor gonestale, grief you arerust orange and glowingat theContinue reading “i’m told i should edit so i look across the channel at the broken hillside//the vacancy of trees//the motionless machines”
most times peoplecan’t tell when you talkto them from hell.most times you lookabout the same.well that’s a bitdramatic, isn’t it?to position yourselfsometimes in hell? walking through aparking lot madespacious and coolby its vehicular lack,a raven stands atopa rock. is that whatravens do, stand?i’ve not seen onelie down. can the ravensee me from my hell?a bitContinue reading “i keep forgetting i have frozen organic fruit in my small freezer until i shove it aside to cram in more ice cream”
she is physically beautifulto me, so i wantto talk to her.i am made ofmeat and water,water, a powerfulconductor of electricity.what portion of this meatis made of desire, oris desire that which isconducted? atop water,floating, we briefly walk,she and i. she,a stranger to me,and i, only strange. a friend commented,“it’s really heavy”,and yes, my pants tendContinue reading “speaking of failure is to a degree a failure so instead we speak of flowers that bloom independent of our meager measures”
a woman in Alaska,her face framedby short cut thickblack hair, sits framedin the window of a truck.i have seen herseveral times;on the dock,on a boat,in a truck.my eyes, framedbetween whispered rowsof lashes, see herin her framingof thick short cutblack hair. a blonde womanfills her 2-doorHonda hatchbackwith gas, ata highway gas stationin Minnesota.she has long honeyblondeContinue reading “i was three days sober in a Minnesota campground and an unseen nocturnally barking dog drove me into a field and left me there alone”
i’ve been beingcool. i’ve beenbeing coolmy whole life. ol’ boy herein a tiny townon a massive islandon this good goddamnedspinning wobbling tiltingsphere, a decade ago,maybe two, he put 20inches of chrome on theEscalade. ol’ boy sellsfurs! in a town of 8500year-round residents and floating cities of Summer that belch and disgorge rumpledwobbling (no not likeContinue reading “blades on Eddie Bauer//~//competition i devour”
this version ofpeaceis so foreignto me.i still interpretit as“loneliness”. i was hurtwhen i learnedthe womanwho agreed with me,“yes,i don’t wantkids now,either”, waspregnant.a shift this suddenless about,“change”, andmore aboutwhat we allowourselves tobelieve. and thispeaceis so foreignto methat i stillinterpret myfeeling as“hurt”. it is not. i rode my bicyclemoderatelyinto the scarified dazzleof a glacial fjord,thinkingof value.all aroundContinue reading “the difference between a fjord and a bay is the way the tongue folds itself into the cleft between shadow and light”
it is evening and Summeris still Summer. sunsethere on this postage stampof globe, isn’t until 940pm.i received a letter today,it bore a postage stamp.the service that brings methis letter, is failing. someof its failing is becauseit is comprised of humans,and humans faileven when they try very hardnot to. and some of this failing isbecause someContinue reading “someone in Japan “followed” my social media page and i think Japanese people are smarter than Americans and i know that isn’t true and know i think a lot of things that aren’t true, or; curb your enthusiasm season 7 episode 6″
morning,made shy bywindow coverings.a pair of blackshorts. a black t-shirt.a looped length ofgray wool. i covermy windows tokeep out the light. when i wasyoung, someof the churchesi attendedprovided headcoverings forthe attendingwomen. women,so often asked,“attend to”. fascinating, bitsof lacy cloth,the women alreadywith hair so long,still they areasked, “covermore”. is god reallyso bright? perhapsgod is onlyshy, preferringContinue reading “i would like a discount on a credit card reader and as this want has gone unheeded, i decide to deride those who have found capitalistic success”
thank youfor your wishesof kindness. i waketo a mutteringand obliquehell,as i havefor most ofmy life.this is notwhat i thinki would preference,were i betterable tounderstandhow to wieldmy “choice”. perhapsi will learnto interpretmy environmentin ways thatregister lesshellishlyandhowlingin myinternalworld. i amluckyandthankful forthe continuedopportunityto practice. “how is theharbor thismorning?” iam asked.“are youglisteningwith sweat?”,is my reply.the harbor,it isdimpled andchattering.the sweat,itContinue reading “i watched a 13 year old girl of less than 100 pounds kick the face clean off another, terrified, i have been scrabbling like a duck ever since”
walk through a parkinglot, mountains inthe distance aheadof me, mountainsunder unfathomable gallonsof ocean behind me.talk with a mani only ever knewas a teenager,and i disappear. return to the gaspthat i currently inhabit,look at parcels offor-sale land,in a state many thousandsof miles away,and i disappear. in that sameparking lot, the onewith the grown upteenaged man,men sitinContinue reading “seams split, fabric fades and comes back vividly”
a man, walking bywith coffee in his warm hands,stops into the small shopi am in, saying,“the window looksmore open and bright,it looks very inviting”. i help a woman. i help hermove some appliances.the cleave of her assshows from under slippedcoverage of her jeans.good-naturedly, shemakes a joke abouther mild exposure. i listen to musicmost of theContinue reading “it looks very inviting”
make itmorepalatable. i caveman builta wooden boxto house collectedwine. aloneon a Thanksgivingafternoon andturkey-stuffedwith thanks,i opened bottleafter bottle,the giddiness of whichbrought me toerasure.the wooden box,square hands andsmall round nails,gathered dustand vacancy,as the wine icontinued to ingestgrew in bottle sizeand plummetedin price. make itmorepalatable,maybe morewill find itappealing. a woman tellsme of herabandonment, soof course i respondwith BushwickContinue reading “i worked in a wine shop with an Italian man who would say with a shrug, “for me, it is good””
i think i’m manicagain, i think i thinki think i thinktoo muchand i think i’mmanic again.not psychotic, nonot that, i thinki’m manic again. two women walkby, both beautifuland memanic and ona bike andtwo women walkby and bothbeautiful and bothcutting the airwith suchappropriate dexterity,clad in bodiesand bodies clad inwool and down andjust the right amount ofmessContinue reading “the girl i don’t know at all is here and she is my nemesis and wouldn’t you know it but she has that golden down snap neck coat just like i’ve always coveted”
people in positionsof traditional leadershiprarely lead inany meaningful way. most politicians aresoaked and greasedin cowardice. wealthy and famouspeopleare most oftendisfigured to soullessness. the graveyard is fullof the unmarked gravesof true saints,those with the biggesttombstone, mostoften only bones.
we havevery specific preferences in howwe communicate;give me eyes, give mepupils. give metwitching tongue andgive me tidal swellof chest. no, giveme words and give methoughts, give me spacefrom the cascade ofyour chemicals. have you heardthe boulders rollunseen down a glacial paleblue river? like teeth,like teeth clicking,in the mouth of thatbeautiful human whoyou have built aContinue reading “my friend Rick in Washington who i have never met and do not know at all was supposed to send me an email confirming the reality of a 10 pound box of tart red cherries, dried.”
i do not knowhow this plumbingworks, in a floatinghome made of plastic.40 years old, not sobad for a scatter ofplastic and steel,ballast to keepthat which we deem“top”in its rightful position. it is an attempt toright myself, followingtubes to their hidden coil.there are tanks in thishome, tanks to keepmy waste separate frommyself. if the hearthad aContinue reading “people walk by on the dock, looking into my windows. mostly, when we see each other, they quickly avert their swimming pool’d eyes”
even dreadhas its excitement. wake to dread,yes,and wake toexcitement of beingalive. so muchpossibility in thisnothingness! still i suffer as stilli hope; a cupof coffee withan old friend,the absurdity ofmodern communication,sending outelectric fingersinto the ether,hopingto find the textureof connection. a few hours inand excitement,hope,have succumbedto deadening fatigueof dread,disappointment. the lolling lullof middling day’sflaccid middle,it stretcheswhen oneContinue reading “odd electronic music from Japan, black coffee from Guatemala, beguiling human body from a confused planet”
in the parking lotwith the 12 portly black rubberdumpsters, a manpulls up in his beaten graygas wheezing vehicle. he opens all 4doors and liftsthe large rear door,it sags like the man’spants. quickly, furtively,he deposits thick plasticbag after skin-sagging bagof his refuse into parking lotdumpsters, who do notprotest his gifts. are they greedy,these dumpsters?are they insatiable?orContinue reading “the theme of the week is “hot” and the theme of the month is “pride” and the theme of the day is “neither cold nor shameful, but mild and fatigued””
every day is a nice day walking in a parking lot,its mouth opento the grease and gruntof a public harbor,i walk past two humansand one dog,all three of which i know–though do we ever reallyknow another? aside: the lastwoman who said she loved me–aren’t we supposed toknow those we love?–she one day got in aContinue reading “emptying a tube of silicone onto the toe rail of a sailboat in an effort to stop a chronic leak ahead of an impending rain storm”
i know a man, know that heexists, though know little elseof him. buti know he exists, andi know he workson the rotting wood of his agedhome, in some small startleof land in central Vermont. hetakes care to take wood rottedinto lace and encourage it away.a huff and a sigh, woodwould delight in its dusted dance.unknownContinue reading “mostly i write so i can titularly quote Denis Johnson, and mostly i wake to ocean so as to know how to breathe”
we do not praisethe lord, no,not the lord.we praise our lord,the lord who lookslike us and agreeswith us and employs usin the violent ranksof righteous indignation.we praise our lordwhether this lordswims beneatha microscope lens orfloats somewhereabove us,but not thateffeminate floatingof an ornate andlargely flightlessbird, no,our lord,should this lordbe positioned aboveus, floatsthe way a confusedcow breaksContinue reading “if i drink a cup of coffee at 1030am well surely i’ll be fucked but since when have i ever lacked courage for bad decision?”
why have you made,why do you make,the choices you did,you do?why do you failso thoroughly?why are you poor?why are you alone?why do you fill your bodywith such emptiness?why are you addictedto uglinessand why doyou make yourselfugly?what is wrongwith you? there is nothingwrong with me, iam tryingto heal. sister brother fathermother lonely cousinlovely aunt drunkenuncle woolenContinue reading “this State contains mountain and coastline and rainforest and desert and city and village and homestead and condo and boat and plane and many method of wheel and right now my roof is covered in rain”
hello!human being?yes,human being,hello! look!my handis free ofweapon, andis not balled intoa small, thoughstill effective,means of harm.i see you aredoing the same—thank you!i feelmarginallymore safe.say,look at that!an animal isattached toa length ofmaterial!you carry thismaterial in yourhand! haha! you are controllingthe movements ofthis animal!this animal,tell me, humanbeing, this animal,has it beenselectively bredover thousands ofyears to be smallinContinue reading “i bought a milk foamer from a company in Singapore but was unhappy with the cheap plastic materials and lack of provided batteries so i wrote an email to them and complained”
i have notdisabused myself ofthe habitof making myselfmonstrous. was it the gooddoctor, Hunter,who said that?something about havingto make ourselfinto monster?did the velvetand tree-sap brainof my teenagedplanetary yearshungrily suck atthe words of thosei admired, evenin my flagrant hatefor all who claimsome form ofauthority? didimis-understand? yes, likely,yes,my tongue— i reference itfrequently,lewdly,monstrously —my tongue isathletic, yes,still yes,though onlyaverage;itContinue reading “betony, betony, wood betony to calm down, down there in the moon’s mud, where there is only creation, never “good” nor “bad””
i cannot wake upso i can; drinkcoffee until i can’tsee and burnincense until i amblind. i wake up soi cannot; drinkcaffeine until my eyesare turned to lakesand engulf your body insidemy senses. is thissenseless, is thisincensing, to wantyour round hip undermy flat hand?a mirror pond,eyes in the centerof glassy palms,light notnecessary for allpursuits of perception.inContinue reading ““i’ll probably never leave. is this strange? yes, wonderful and strange. the blades of the pasture stopped in the sun have had all the life cooked out of them by the drought–all the hope, the strength to grow, to suffer–and now””
i lurch and shudderas i walk. no,that’s not quite right.i walk with a gangsterlimp, mid-90’sChicago in my stutteringstep. no,this is also inaccurate. i do move my body,yes, do moveit along a dock,lately, currently,atop current. inhale.juvenile fish make cutein their dimpling,exhale andoil-sheen’d harborwater moon walks on out.i do walk, thoughi am not sure exactlyhow, i doContinue reading “it isn’t really safe to touch people and i don’t much participate in casual physical contact and there is a dog on the dock just a few boats down from mine and i can still get a little shooting star of oxytocin if i pet this dog as i go trundling by”
“You talk to Everyone!” “i try to be kind to people, and say hello and shoot the brief breeze, but i don’t actually “talk” to many people, and when i do, we don’t discuss fishing gossip.” “the vast majority of my life, i am alone with my own thoughts. it is a lonely life, yes,Continue reading “my man Mike judges himself against a backdrop of slaughter; you catch one, he catches infinity”
wake to anger, wake to painwake to blue skies ripened to rain wake to quiet, wake to peacewake to furrowed forehead canyon crease wake to tapping, wake to dreamwake to silent paralytic scream pointed finger, painted face?heart of concrete, skin of lace? wake to sorrow, wake to losswake to glacial, body of moss wake toContinue reading ““There’s nothing left of the sky. Nothing. Why is that so beautiful?””
today’s table is fourconfident sea otterson a dock borrowed frommorning. today’s tableis a light blue fiberglass deck,a sailboat, the colorsreminding of popularitycontests from years long agorecycled into today. today,too and again, alreadymolting into quietcomfort of obsolescence.today’s table is rhubarbgrown in my mother’s back yard,picked by her hands, cleaned,baked sweetly into a pie.patience, my ever-young child,evenContinue reading “whitewater rafting in eastern Tennessee, well, that’s just something i have not done”
it is only Mayin Alaskaso dusk comesat a time ofdusk.writing this,in June,dusk does not arriveuntil evening haslong past stretcheditself athletically intonight.but in Maydusk arrives atdusk. a walk alonga small harbor,clad in woolen longsleeve and greencoat of goose,maybe duck.a man, i knowhis name thoughi do not really knowhim. he had a pastsexual relationshipwith a woman ionceContinue reading ““purple thang, gold hammers, yeah you clean as hell fool””