Sunday, September 30, 2012


The fascinating
thing about his
ideas was their
ability to cannibalize

themselves on their
way to the forum.
The resulting empty-
headed lecture drew

applause from those
too young to remember
the time when people
died at the end

of their lives by
not breathing.

Saturday, September 29, 2012


Beauty's the beginning
of a terror we
invite in because of
its unbroken vow

not to strike us dead.
No warning in the
blood prompts us
to fly away.  We

refuse to court
the actual, that
familiar skeleton
hanging in the

doctor's office like
a rude remark.

Friday, September 28, 2012

At Hand

And then there
were sixteen
reasons not to
return home

You began to
believe in words
as birds again,

confusing everyone
around you.  The
nothing that could
be done about

anything caught
fire in your hands.

Thursday, September 27, 2012


There might have
been birdsong in
the morning if the
trees had decided

to live.  A small
puppy pretending
to like you in exchange
for food grows

into a dog that
barks at your
enemies.  My
passion convinces

an old prayer to
lead me into temptation.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Now that you
are gone, I get
along as best
I can.  I find

my way through
the wall using
a door.  The
distance between

me and everything
I ever dreamed
of expands pretty
much as predicted

back when I bothered
to predict things.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Disguised As Pleasure

The first shall
be last, the last
first.  Those in
the middle of

the line can
go fuck themselves
for all I care.
Someone who almost

knows you thinks
we should go
out on a date.
Your eyelashes

look even longer
than last time.

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Moment
for Mister Ron

When I get
tired of never
knowing when,
I force something

to happen.  I
purposely drop
my fork at
dinner.  Everyone

around the table
looks at me,
forced by me
to do so.  I

have enjoyed sharing
this moment with you.

Sunday, September 23, 2012


The recent discovery
that this is not the
real world, but
merely a reasonable

facsimile, has eased
the concerns of
those who had bet
their last dollars

on beauty and truth
and their reciprocal
relationship in the
poem by Keats.  This

poem is an unreasonable
facsimile of that one.

Saturday, September 22, 2012


It's fun to watch
the light at noon
scurrying around
frantically in search

of its shadow.  It's
one of the many
tricks nature
enjoys playing

on itself.  The sun
doesn't care whether
you look at it or not.
The moon wishes you

would mind your
own fucking business.

Friday, September 21, 2012


Turning toward you
as you turn away,
I decide to
worship the ground

you walk upon
for fun.  I
become the invalid
you can't get

rid of.  Uneasily
adored, you continue
turning until time
becomes just one

more possible way
of looking at things.

Thursday, September 20, 2012


Even more unsettling
was the fact that
light had begun
causing leaves

to rustle, flags
to flap, something
the wind had always
handled heretofore.

Air, incapable of
budging, had retreated
into small clusters
of bubbles that

resembled ponds.
Something was clearly amiss.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Leaning into the past
for protection from
tomorrow's tornado
only works if your eyes

are dotted with dreams
of tooth fairies and mildly
prophetic prophecies.
I address God using

the familiar form
of the verb "to be".
His answer is a noun
rounded to the nearest

zero.  I worship in a
hollowed-out church.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


One way of staying
ahead of the game
is to write elegies
for people who aren't

dead yet.  You must
begin, of course, with
your own.  And don't
try to cheat by writing

your elegy in the future
tense.  Any attempt to
avoid death by keeping
the future safely behind

you will result in
a stiff penalty.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Birth Of The Sonnet

At some point
the poet decides
to write only
poems he can

escape from at
a decent hour.
Epics he has
written are

whittled down
to size.  Odes
are asked to
become odds

and ends.  Elegies
die in the line of duty.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

In Transit

The irony inherent
in an angel's
shadow threatens
to undo man

and creation too.
Kindness only kills
when kept too
close for comfort.

Asleep on the hard
bed of his mortality,
a man awakes
with a small

dent on the inside
of his thoughts.

Saturday, September 15, 2012


Is the poem over
yet?  No?  Okay,
I'll try to think
of something more

to say.  I got lost
yesterday.  Today's
no different.  I
am writing this

in words.  I had
considered using
numbers (1,2,3,
etc.), but decided

against it at
the last second.

Friday, September 14, 2012


A season's taste
on its first day
quickly gives way
to a sense of having

wasted one's time.
Eternity hides its
noise in the rime
of melting snow.

There's nowhere to know
once the verdict's in
(no familiar place
other than ago).

The sound of being here
echoes in an empty ear.

Thursday, September 13, 2012


I lunge toward
you in a stationary
move to be all
I can be.  We

are lost when
our fate forgets
to happen at
the prescribed

 moment.  We
tire of trying
again and settle
for a peaceful sleep

in which we die
without making a sound.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


What went around
returned too late
to matter.  Trying
to escape you,

I shape you in
the image of
someone I used
to know when

I still knew how
to know her.
I look at myself
from behind through

two mirrors that
recognize each other.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


What I believe
you will believe
for the time being.
I'll let you know

when it's safe
to doubt me
again.  A cyclone
inside what we

used to think was
true is working
its way toward
the outskirts.

The all-clear will
sound when it's gone.

Monday, September 10, 2012


Every woman tries
her best, I think,
to give birth to
God.  Many are

called chosen by
their mothers and
try to sell themselves
as special on the

open market.
There are fewer
and fewer takers
as time goes by.

I was chosen to be
one telling you this.

Sunday, September 9, 2012


Intent on becoming
everything the arrogant
are, he decides
to run for office.

He allows blown-up
photos of himself
to blossom on
billboards and

banners.  He learns
how not to say
anything with his
mouth open.  After

months of careful
planning, he's elected.

Saturday, September 8, 2012


I used to think
the Blessed Virgin
was hot when
I was young

enough to have
such thoughts.  I
scarcely notice
her now.  I

used to picture
her in three-inch
heels to infuriate
the parish priest.

I'm older than
that now.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Temporary Sanity

Forgive me for
falling asleep
midway through your
sermon about death

and its expanded
role in the modern
dream.  I felt a
need to wash

God's hair in a
river that never
returns while hanging
onto gravity's belt

buckle for balance
and temporary sanity.

Thursday, September 6, 2012


I could smell
my guardian angel's
body rotting in the
closet as seven

gold-plated bullies
sat on their oil
drums counting
the days.  There

was no longer
enough toilet paper.
There was suddenly
too much profundity.

Tomorrow refused
to be another day.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012


Signs in the birdshit
suggest an impending
end.  But an end
is always impending

and couldn't be
an end if it weren't.
That's the tub the
rub lies in.  Dreaming

helps a little now
and then.  Other
times it doesn't.
Dreaming after death

is not recommended
in any of the handbooks.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012


The last-minute save
we tried to requisition
was out of stock.  I
can hear the night

grinding its teeth
in the dark.  The song
angels are said to sing
in heaven is silent.

There is nothing
more beautiful than
a poor girl's blouse
being worn by the

wife of a billionaire.
She looks so cute in it.

Monday, September 3, 2012


When I first met
you, you were still
looking for a story
to explain your life

with.  You felt free
to want everything
you didn't have, or
at least the opposite

of what you already
had.  I could almost
feel you trying to
trade yourself in

for a new improved

Sunday, September 2, 2012


She sleeps through
dawn as if guilty
of every sin she
wishes she'd

had the courage
to commit.  A
dream wrestles
her naked body

to the ground,
her virginity
glowing in the
dark like Jesus.

The gap between
here and now narrows.

Saturday, September 1, 2012


An old blood-stained
altar offers its
meat to God,
whose inaudible

voice deafens
those who hear it.
I rub the bruise
limitation leaves

on my soul
and head for
higher ground.
I flap my wings

in vain and build
an ark out of daydreams.