Friday, June 29, 2012

The Commuter Haiku

Dump trucks and the stuff
loosely tied to the back of
trucks ...and my windshield

The squirrel bounds across
Adorning the road with a
Perfect scalloped edge

In winter the trees
Near the street drag shadows and
sunlight like barcodes

Why do you drivers
Always obey the speed limit
What are you hiding? 

A highway at dawn
The meat of the nightly dead
Road kill uncovered

I spend too much of
My commute in second gear
Damn these traffic jams

You driving that car
Too close to the back of me
I hope I don't brake.

Monday, October 31, 2011

The French in the Trees

Flip it so that it is an oblique
the way that
you would take a piece
of clear glass
and set it on edge
to see that it is green.
You know...
on edge the way that
heat is on the blacktop.
It turns all quicksilver.
Only from far away.

This is the only way
that I can really see you.
If I look at you face on
all I can see is some guy.

You are the only one
who still believes me
when I say that cicadas
are actually tiny Frenchmen
going "Heh, heh, heh - heh, heh, heh."
So you can live here with me
and the tiny Frenchmen where
clear glass has a color
and so does heat.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


The First Cummings said
she rattles like angry candy.
Luna'd been shooting wet Pop-Rocks 
like BBs against the wallpaper 
of the skull that lives in your face.
Every day.  All day.  For a while.
Filling the alleys with vodka 
just made her move slower 
and all of the pills stacked like cobbles
dissolved leaving you (again) with
that Italian bitch of a goddess Luna 
her bird shot adding: tic tic tic...

Hanging in the window were 
faces that were lean and brown 
as Peking duck now looking like
wrapped hams or cheeses.
I have been sitting for too long
waiting for a light to flicker 
in my votive coffee,
a penitent holding a vigil.
I looked up to say something
and you were there
in front of the garland and lights
smiling in all directions
the Second Coming of
The Buddha of Christmas
or something equally happy
which was altogether (almost)
incomprehensible to me.

We waited and we watched the
World-sickle sliced Creamsicle Moon
bleed out blood orange and go dim.
We kept warm by expanding
and "jiggling the particles"
and stirring the bonfire
while Luna hissed
"tick, tick, tick"
flicking frozen shards of
the longest night of the year
at us like hard-learned candy.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Best Puzzle Ever

Once there was a girl who loved... let's say it was puzzles. Picture puzzles. She was new to the town and met a boy who said that he also liked picture puzzles. She went on and on about how she had just rediscovered picture puzzles. He told her that he had loved picture puzzles since he was a small child and had been thinking about them too lately. She told him about how they seemed to be a symbol of life and by reconnecting the disconnections you could piece things together that had been separated. She told him about her whole philosophy of life based on the picture puzzle. He said that his fascination with them was more personal and declined to talk about it.

They dated for a little while. His friends looked at her like she was funny in the head when she told them that they had connected over a conversation about puzzles because they had never really known him to show much interest in puzzles. She took this to be a sign that she knew about him, a special part of him, a secret soul part of him that he had shared with her and no one else.

For his birthday, the girl bought him a big beautiful picture puzzle. It was the biggest must beautifully intricate puzzle she had ever seen and they both were very excited when he opened the gift.

A few days later, she came to his house and found him in his room, with the puzzle spread out before him. She ask him if it was the best puzzle he had ever had. He smiled a big smile and dunked a piece of it in a jar of peanut butter and popped it in his mouth. He said yes. He had loved puzzles since childhood, but this was the Best Puzzle Ever.

Dinnertime Carol

Predictions gave
your voices away.
I knew you would arrive,
to sing the new
Christmas carols.
A Grecian Chorus
perches rakishly
about my counterpane.
I feel your talons,
I who hide under the blankets
from the creditor
I invited to dinner
in better times.
It was always just the theater,
the silvered twin of life.
Now there's Don Giovanni
playing in the heat ducts.
The Stone Guest arrives
dragging me down
taking my car.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

sure nest

I wonder exactly what it was that was lost.
I wonder how it was lost.

I wonder if it was tossed too messily
for any hands to catch
like rice
or by being too small or too wispy
for his clumsy hands to grip
or too big.

if it escaped

if it was was stolen

If it was thrown away accident accident on purpose

If it was given up for dead and was buried somewhere
...and is waiting to sprout
...if is it entombed there

If, quietly,
I placed what I see him without
in the sure nest of his hands...
if he would make me take it back
just because he lost the first one.

Friday, November 26, 2010

The Birdman of Detroit

The dream was that I was living in a really post-industrial wasteland
and everything was vacant and beautiful and crumbling but poisoned.
The kind of place where they could never build a house or school or
anything because even the dirt was deadly.  There were no weeds
even, barely any trees and what trees there were were those unkillable
Sumac trees.

After maybe being out all night ...and at that part of the morning where
nothing makes sense anymore someone took my arm and told me he had a surprise for me and that it was the coolest thing ever.  I didn't know this person but was interested in anything that could make anyone have any enthusiasm about anything anymore.

We went to a tall building that was in a severe state of disrepair.
You could tell from the outside that the upper floors had fallen in and
the windows were clear to the sky.  You could see the the scaffolding
was showing around the top of the building from the outside.  The
upper floors were stripped of bricks.  It looked dangerous.  The
interior of the building was also stripped by the metal pirates that
break into old buildings for scrap iron and copper.  There was a
staircase... like a grand marble staircase.  We went up a bunch of
floors on this marble staircase then when that staircase ended we
walked to a metal staircase that went around the periphery of the
building's interior.  The building appeared to be getting round as we kept climbing through the place where the floors disappeared.  There was a giant wrought iron round dome window at the top.  All of the glass had fallen or broken out of making a giant black birdcage.

We went up into the cage and there were probably six to ten other
people up in the cage.  As the sun rose, everyone started making
birdcalls.  The guy explained to me that all of the birds had left
Detroit.  In order to make the sun rise now, people had to go up into
the top of the building... and make all of the bird noises for the
whole city.  So, as the sun rose... the group of us whistled away
happily.  In a big birdcage.  Atop a building.  Somewhere above the
wreckage of Detroit.  It made perfect sense.