Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Vermouth drinkers in the afternoon when nobody saw.

Their infatuations are passing,
Seeing as they are old, having caved in.
All their teeth have turned to sour thatch in
Their mouths
As they enjoy their drinks.

The wild you,
How unpredictable the wild you is, watched, and

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Last night I dreamt about an open suitcase.

The dull patina in the eyes of Edward Hopper's prisoners:
Last night I dreamt about an open suitcase.
Open window
Wet butter knives spilled out on the floor,
An overturned drawer.
Her affairs lay open on the desktop, drenched and

By the suitcase ran spilled ink.
Cursive and at such a breakneck slant,
Heedless, the way an animal would charge,
Antlersdown at the creek,
Charging the adversity of All Things

It was unmistakable what she'd been thinking,
Whatever it was--we're just here to observe this reliquary.


You would lie naked in the field
Without a hand to warm you,
Without any consolation in fact.
You would be there with me,
Ever I was that I was not there
But there.
I am in my eternal fluctuation

Do you see how the smoke rises,
And how all beyond us
And us lying there
Is ruined?


Still from Peter Brook's The Lord of the Flies (U.K. 1963)

Bees buzzing all around
Flowers implode with scent and wretched sorcery.
And time.
The natural world is full of ordered swine
And time

And us,
With what manipulation of science did we ever distend
And call it science!?

With what do we, as we still do it?

I think we are like Golding's Ralph, not spared for his equanimity nor resolve
--for either would have saved him,
But for Good Fortune.

Pink canvas.

You could have sensed it
--even a non-believer like you:
The walls came closing in.
Someone was playing The Stones.
We'd been momentarily disoriented--
Our brains weren't working right.
Our flowers came unto us.

We were monopolized then.

The desperation with which they built a fire.

Their frigid hands converging,
Their hunting talent, screaming, converging,
Their lack of sunlight converging,
What am I forgetting?

Oh right, the amnesty disarticulated
And so naturally cold--
I mean cold by natural dictation
Despite your wanting it.

I could be selfish and invoke the memory of your frigid hands,

A dream about flying.

In the disverdant end we shall speak as we have been spoken to
And what had been green, that will be green
And the alighted will return as if having never flown so far--
Only with the wisdom of having flown.

Monday, September 28, 2009

The conundrum of a boy. and the sun.

Vincent Van Gogh (detail from) Tournesois (Dutch 1887)

July, most likely.

One day you stood up against the sun
Know your size and how readily you could melt.
Eschew sophistication
And pull your heart from its willowy cage.

Your smearstained vulgarity, your mass, so weightless,
So crucial in the verification of the sun.

A thread.

I lack the custodial advice
And history, I know nothing.
In a bar when I was a kid I overheard a
Lawyer tell his date,
"Descartes suffered from it too, and the Meditations bear it out".

W.C. Fields movie and a bottle of red wine.

Go be a sad sack somewhere--there's plenty of
Open the door.
It's in that wind you relish.
You've involuntarily
Become infatuated with the air.

Plums are rotting and starving kids in China.

The auld lang syne.

An abrasive definition of sanity I remember from school suggests
That loneliness is a resident distortion
And that the sun discolors our rejuvenescence.
My discretion prevented me from swallowing it whole.

It was in a book, one of them. That, or I made it up.

The holy ghost.

I remember very few things about Volant:
A rusty shed, and steam rising above a plate of fish and peas.
I don't remember how it tasted, if I'm to be perfectly honest.

But that's it, the holy ghost. We
Fabricated an entity to take the place of all the things we could not
Carry forever.


The scientific, and factual, explanation
Was that it was hemlock. It grows wild and is commonly mistaken for
an innocuous kindred.

And Bach spoke to us through a cello.

Unsolicited poem about love.

I want to take you back and show you the world as it was before you The prehistory How they foundered and bred How their love was a coarse love and their labors drummed the controversy of the G-ds against them You may first squint then look away How unstomachable we were

The meridians.

Traversing a slew of cultures
She found a way to
Elegantly spit out objectionable food.

G-d in a pavillion.

I went out looking for You,
Not because You were lost, but
Because I was.

My hands in the rain,
Stripped of the things they have touched.

Anyhow, it is raining and I went out looking for You.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

The public option.

Norman Rockwell Doctor and Boy Looking at a Thermometer (American 1954)

To the opposition I gotta ask you to stop lying.

The floor won't fall out, and most of us don't get sick til it's too late anyhow, so no money wasted.

I haven't been to a doctor in easily a decade so don't call me a parasite! Most of us unprotected will never sap a nickel of your taxes, let alone enough to warble what gets spent on when or where you go to the doctor or what his coddled ass drives!

We bounce from job to job, we work for you--the time away from the light and what we love and we never goddamned once said to you we were tired, we brought you that beer cold, that tomato. We're fucking tired. You put the custodianship of care for your children in the hands of people whose chief priority is making money for themselves and--with the richest of oblivion, disdain--RESIST, the transfer of that care to elected officials--officials YOU elect, who, if they fuck up, you could boot straight the fuck out the chair when their terms come up.

How rich we are. And fraught. And if a fucking janitor gets leukemia it should goddamned matter for whom he works and the ambulations of scrupple. But I guess like anything a wealth includes the vestiges of a blighted palate. I hope you swallow it and live to watch US choking, over and over til your last grasp of the finery.

You asked a wolf to protect you, and a wolf will do as nature has conceived.

The girls.

Paul Klee Embrace (Swiss-German 1939)

They wore ad clothes off their shoulders and painted me in a corner
With brushes I figured they just used for mascara:
Fluctuating rows,
Casual. Was a tremor plow, not an earthquake

And like I keep telling you, relax.

Looked like one of those
Just dirt gardens you shape
With a rake.

Nothing planted, nor water had they.
And don't ruin what willfully touches your eyes
Is why I might've appeared reticent.

Aztec kids.

When I was a kid I thought "jet set" meant a paid-for girl getting off a pinscher-nosed private plane in a white coat and her hair. A ruddy billionaire with a self-selected ring. Now I have a picture of Aztec kids crying in the volcano and how dearly they want to get old.

Now I look down the gutter and Liberty Avenue's descent, and I can't even imagine my legs, let alone using them to get me somewhere.

Saturday, September 26, 2009


Andy Goldsworthy The Storm King Wall (U.K. 1998)

The presses go through the night, mating:
Literature theses--
None of them even rhyme, make any sense.
And that cacophonous sound!
We come up
With pamphlets to combat the din,
But those naugahyde vinyl spines they bind them in
And the barricades of white light through which they force the adherent...
None of them--not one is St. Peter,
An upper-level representative...

...some nobody!

None of them are confident enough to employ a hush
With that altruism so adherent to the sight of clouds
At eye level.

And that sound. They're multiplying.

Arrangement from nearby.

Overview of the Qin Terra Cotta Army (Chinese 200 B.C., app.)

People with nowhere to go
Will go there
Bringing back ornamental vases,
Like the ones we stand our flowers in.

For every arrangement there's someone who'll
Exclaim, at a loss,

He's disrupting a moment
We would've eventually begged to have back,
Had it stayed intact.

The ark.

Alex Katz Woods in Twilight (American 2002)

I've had certain dreams nagging me,
I was waiting for songs

Or words.

I've seen this kind of stubbornness before in broken uprights, clocks
And lawnmowers,

Around them
The grass grows in fences
And dust takes the stairs in the sunlight.

And they defy the struggles that divide.

Everybody loathes the disruption of negative space.
The expertise of balance is lost.

Relationship to an exalted actress.

Isabelle Huppert.

I thought I knew every song. But I was probably on the way there or back,
Or at work when the sun shone from the speaker.

I don't make comparisons to dandelions or strawberry lemonade
I just know too many people who'd be

And in my vanity it was never you kissing
Always me kissing the cool stone foot.

On a marble step.

You were going blind-- on our
Fourth day in Manhattan. The evenings started
Getting darker earlier and
We sat on a marble step with our fingers and looked up as the stock market ticker
Changed to a Jenny Holzer poem. I said how
She must be losing her shit or else the programmer got fired and he's over and was already over It
When he keyed it in, seeing as all the A's had been replaced by 4's.


Friday, September 25, 2009


For Kay Ryan and others, refurbished poorer.

The light discouraged the spell,

You split the broom--
Two brooms now chase you.

You look back, panting.

They're right behind you,
Not without reason.

Autumn census.

Do they seem happy together?
D'you think this aching fissure will last?
Has the world possibly suffused
After this beating--Has it been asked


A casque to cover her rastas.

An artificial sky,
Like motorcyclists wear,
Gleaming on the ridden landscape.
Why not?
What have we known, counted, stacked, traded-in more valuable?
What parts of us
As it passed
Didn't shake,
Begging to split
And go back
And carry on?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

A bountiful inheritance.

Robert Polidori - Cuba Interior (Canadian 1990's)

What was fortified, and therefore presumed ready,
No one was hurt,

And though no artifacts remain
We got what we need,
Which is as much in the trail of our misconception as we'll leave.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


I have stricken this from a dream,
Evicted it.

And yet
It sticks with me.

In the sheer walls of rain
Where I once begged you to beg me to stop,
The clock slowing
The water building behind the glass

That's where. You leave it,
But it doesn't go away.

It's elsewhere, soaked and delirious.

All of this.

The bend and beyond going,
The voluptuous land going
The jewelry of eyes .
All of this.

How underrated all of this is
When carried only by sympathies.

Christina's world.

Andrew Wyeth - Christina's World (American 1948)

Doesn't it lie in the way you see it?

If a bird could rise
In a song,

Or perhaps a tree could fall
In its bounty and the land would make a sound

The land,
It waited as well

Have you forgotten?

This mess.

Andy Kehoe (American recent)

The most modest beginnings,
Look what they've given us:

Everything from the hypnosis of being to

The radio without a station to which, on Easter,
We woke up,

Not indifferent exactly,

Just, you know, different.

Sincere water.

The service is likely
To avoid us. But we grew up
with them..


detailed for us.

And the one I drank from.


I have written everything down; I know I've been lucky.

The boys who stood in it against me, paint bright and go ahead

I don't mean to take away from them and their


But I was better, wilder. And my anemic hinges gave only to
How I shoved.

And theirs felt coerced
As I ruined them.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


What I remember about history is scant,
Just some men in wigs corralled around brown paper, abused time,
And Bulgakov's St. Matthew,
Stealing a fork from the bazaar
With which he scraped his chest raw,
That he might never have the ebullient means
To forget the Crucifixion.

The mirror.

Rene Magritte The Lovers(Belgian 1928)

It begins and we're awake.
An airplane coasting above the miniature ocean.
The world has ended.
We had nothing ready.

Anyway, we're awake now.
The land has disappeared,
The ocean waters have grown precise and clear
As cabinet glass.

Below us there are whales.

Miles below us.

Swimming at the state park.

How far--and narrowly so?

How many years of rippling light conducting our words
have passed below these soaring black ribs?

How many stars are there.

And what is this?


The veneer.

The window let our margin of September run across us.

Pretty girls are wizards.

Everybody, at once, the chorus of "No Expectations."

Everybody, at once, our species of

Gray finish.

Fainting spell.

My near dark cherries,
The ones I gathered,
There in the picture you took over the weekend,
Arcs of blood and
Hurricanes don't accomplish that with the will

With the Arms
With cherries.

My cherries,
On a marble step.

Blue flower.

Picture from Gugging, Vienna.

As a kid I would look at explosive flowers near me


See them coming
And going.


From the Prinzhorn Collection (Heidelberg 1880s)

The lasting copy

Leaves a mold.


A period of grief.

It was copied by desperate hands.

New swan.

Rembrandt Self Portrait (Dutch 1630's?)

For the convalescence of Mr. Leonard Cohen, with warmest humor.

In a dream
Or an article--

I can't exactly remember

They concocted a new swan.

It could talk and play cards with you.

It kept you occupied while you adored the world.

The reconnassaince of memory..

Robert Capa The Beach (American 1945)

We didn't steal parsley roiling in a cove of butter from the French,
We didn't steal olive oil and tomato rubies from the Italian.

We didn't steal the pig, the cashews.

Have you come to me so hungry that nothing else mattered?!

Not what we stole do I so thirst to crawl and bring to you,
But what we rescued.

Sure shot.

George Wesley Bellows Stag at Sharkey's (American 1909)

The way the odds went to shit, and they shook their tickets salaciously, and it was Goliath in the first in all the papers...

The way they thought they'd make money from the sure shot.

The way it all just seemed inevitable and we were even thinking about going home.

The way he fell.

I can't stop;

The way our fears bloomed felicitous and were odd to us and with a torn away jaw his scream seized the air and you said so.

And the way he fell.
And the way he fell. And we watched.

Monday, September 21, 2009


Still from Georges-Henri Clouzot's The Wages of Fear (French 1953)

For Jamonn Campbell.

In an overwhelmed hostel
They let me sleep there.

Mike Tyson bit some dude's ear off,

And the Bells explained why rain was rain
And the Dearth was the Dearth.

Perishability, wet with honey.

Jean Dubuffet Smiling Face (French 1948)

For Fishantena.

How stuck,
And sticky,

My fingers have been blotted out by the
Delivery of skin.

My hands are ashen reminders,

There are leaves of you that have been torn out of me.

You're pink where we meet.
And my tongue pierces your fingers
between the sun.

And maybe your dreams.

John Sloan Red Kimono on the Roof (American 1912)

Try not to.

Take the rest.

Total love generation must die.


This world is being enveloped in a voluptuous shadow.

This is holding the servitude of me


Til now, I haven't been able
To negotiate.


Amedeo Modigliani - Nude (Italian-French 1912)

The way we opine,
That's the way we dream.

That's the way we have come into unknighted agreement
With colors.

To say, "Yes, you", and "Yes, you"

and, dipping sword point on shoulder, and
Stolen from the light,

"I haven't time to eat."


"Give over, be swarming and all blood is wheat and sugar."

Some of those girls were born from strawberries.

I need to lie.

Jenny Holzer - Public Art (American recent)

Her ivory toes sinking into a bath of

Or, at least, her watching that happen.

On the show.

Don't we invariably caress the same pictures of what we like?

(I feel myself shouting it.)

Spanish harlem.

For Trout.

Can't the little things scuff me?!

I have been intent upon listening
Pouring the volume of me through
The mesh.

The cracked-up 'Kind of Blue' I won because of an owner's suicide,

The Otis Clay

'The Only Way is Up'

It skips.

The Roberta Flack, the market says its worthless...

But it runs and its flushness blushes on the brim.
When my ears are open it is a creaking wilderness.
The terrior of nighttime presses me
And olive oil runs from my eyes...

Be kind to me.

Banksy Street Flower (British recent)

The unobserved flickers and is

Only your suspicion can
Corrupt it.

Be kind to the prevalences of wishfulness.

Be kind to me, too.

Lucky light.

Kathe Kollwitz (German 1940's?)

The light, the lucky light!

The compilation of laundry, bottles, and every
Mixtape had Suicide's "Sweetheart" on it.

Run, these wolves I feed...

Just run.

Everything tastes like candy.

Willem De Kooning - Lucifer (Dutch American 1947)

Everything tastes like candy when you've been
--lost at sea.

"Instead of time."

You know how bullshit makes me dizzy. Well, this morning I awoke with a can of Tecate in my hand, pretty much unclothed, and, without so much as a fashionable iota, carried my sorry ass to the record heap and drew Barbirolli conducting Mahler's 9th. I tell you what, there outta be a separate jail for assholes like this. This is the composition that actually makes me look forward to dying! It's radiance is immeasurable. It's philosophical import can hardly be exaggerated. But somehow this Barbirolli cunt managed to deflavor it to such a pulpy shitmass that I almost feel like I'm stuck in front of one of those goddamned Star Wars movies with music by John Whatshisfuck.

The silver living to this fecal puff is that upon reaching the turntable I found that my roommate had swallowed a hard and baffling Steelers loss to the FUCKING BEARS by spinning out the evening to Frank Sinatra's In the Wee Small Hours. I tell you what, it must take a grown up fucking guy to lose Ava Gardner. I don't envy him that. Anyway, I mention it because the notion that there are people between the rural lights of our land dozing off to that record almost makes up for Tim Geithner and the bloodsuck casuistry that is rapidly developing as the Obama administration. And by the way, if you think a healthy fucking slice of our President's detractors are not racist cunts then kindly wake up while any given placard is being waved cariacaturing him as a monkey. Fuck them, but double fuck you. Alright, my beer's getting warm and I think the sun might be coming up.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

First, the sea.

James Abbott McNeil Whistler (attributed) Untitled seascape (American 19 c.)

First the sea, and I will gain everything from this.

How do I get away from You?
Closer to You?

I've lost everything in the white circles and
You, Drenching and Swollen Drenching Superiority

You host everything.

I can't come back.
If I begged and left the rent motes of my pride,
And begged
And if I came to you with my bare arms,
And without surprise, gainless,
And without anything in my dry throat but the reaching for You

Could I come back and belong to You?

I know. I know. I see the way It lights on You. Let me sit here.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Social studies.

Damien Hirst - The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living (British 1989?)

People who think about social studies fall in love.
People who think about love are around,
Their bikes chained to a stickered pole,
And the bank is still open.

Butcher shop curiosity.

Edward Hopper Sun in an Empty Room (American Eventually)

After all this civility, this.

A mouse idling by a heap of pulpy fingers.

Eventually the door sign flips over and

The vermin digests his food in an ambient


On fire.

Still of Renee Jeanne Falconetti from Dreyer's Passion of Joan of Arc (French 1928)

The differences between man and child can be reduced to this general observation. Ask each to draw a human hand. Allow that each mistakenly draws it with only four fingers. Allow each to correct. The child draws a new finger over top the established hand--his architectural genuis permits. The man accepts the defect. Everything, its warmth.

In the hearts, on paper.

Caravaggio - St. Jerome (Italian 1606)

It rises in the final dew and kids are drunk.

There is a plant I discovered that grows,
Unwilling to give us its salve.

It has escaped from our usage,
It is inhabitant--it is out there,

Look first for the speckling, as speckling
occurs all around.

The disturbance of a breeze, too,
Is a dead giveaway.
A fungus nearby,

Also the sun.

Bring a notebook to document the leaves,
The throaty stem,
The stamen...

Oh sure, I know what you're thinking.

A repottable mum

The error in discovery lies lifting in the hearts of the searchers
Even before the fact, which is why, among other things,
The kids are drunk.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Shark sandwich.

Dedicated to my pals, Todd & Danielle, out in Bowling Green, and to the great poet, F.A. Nettelbeck, all of whom have stirred this shit loose.

Because it was a gift, and with uncompelled great humor am I listening to, for the first time, George Wright's 1957 Hammond stir-up record, George Wright Plays the Hotsy Totsy Organ. It's an amusing thing from a time when the sexiest thing around was a girl's knees. Anyhow, it's incredibly shitty and reminds me of a product called Hotsy Totsy, which is a caustic used to clean deep fryers in restaurant kitchens. There is a spider the size of the moon blocking the moonlight, and if I were fucking Napoleon I couldn't say with more strident conviction, I am in love with this thing.

The flapper on the sleeve is kinda janky, but I probably wouldn't kick her out of bed. Who knows.


Edward Hopper Cape Cod Morning (American 1950)

When I was a kid the scariest thing I could imagine was being the guy who set the window glass in the top floors of skyscrapers. Each time the same image materialized as my palms iced over. The pane tilts and he uses the pressure from his chest to push it into the fitting.. There is no rope to suspend him, no ledge. He's just standing there in midair, with the white sky flashing on the perimeter of a new room.

Later in life I would find the long gaze in that guy's eyes in the paintings of Edward Hopper. One in particular portrays a beautiful woman leaning against a bay window, her gaze carrying across a repeating line of trees. They share this incidental blindness, one that captures nothing of the moment, the immediate, but has no trouble taking in the heartbreak of what lies beyond it. Like they share a curse; they cannot be surprised.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

About girls.

"I came here today to talk to y'all about girls. And I know, I got a good crowd, and y'couldn't ask for a more beautiful day. But my car just got towed, and everything costs money."