Tag: poem

Baby Blue

She gave birth to a baby
missing his third eye but
with remarkably imitative skin–
as he grew, he often looked
like Rock Hudson or Rex
Harrison or Clark Gable
(though his mother wasn’t a fan,
thinking Clark Gable looked like
a well-dressed monkey), always
morphing into men from Hollywood’s
golden age, eschewing anyone new

all because his mother had gone
to pray at Forest Lawn and fallen
asleep and an unholy ghost had
overshadowed her, filling her with
life and deep sorrow as she murmured,
“I am the Handmaiden of The Hills,
be it done unto me according to thy
lustful will,” a fate set not so much
in stone as celluloid, stretching to
accommodate all the pain and beauty
splashed so recklessly across the screen.

The Pocket of Another Man

Gather your courage and
deposit yourself into
the pocket of another man.
In that pocket, storms
rage, empires rise and fall,
and humanity balances
on the head of a pin, afraid
to dance, afraid of not dancing
and so exists in between worlds,
both incomplete, both paralyzed.

In the pocket of the first man,
there’s nothing remarkable.
The grass, you may be assured,
was most certainly greener, and
you will live what they call your
“best life” as long as that life
includes emotional black-outs
and the loss of what might be called
“hope” by lesser people…but don’t
worry about them… you’re right
where you should be, darling.

The Tale of a Grandson

His grandmother poured salt into
his eyes and shipped him of to St. Alphonso’s
Home for Boys Blinded by Their Grandmothers
and there he flourished, rising to the
top of his class and deciding to stay
even after graduating, and so he never
knew the world, and the world was poorer for it.

Yesterday’s Spider

I worry about the smallest of things
like the wound yesterday’s spider
incurred when it tumbled to the ground
and bent its leg backward and let out a tiny
spider moan that I somehow heard and knelt on
the floor and whispered, “I am so sorry
that happened, the world is a terrible place.”

Eating In

I decided that an apron
wouldn’t do as I entered
the kitchen, so I wore your
recently-shed skin instead.
It didn’t really fit, but I
didn’t complain, and look,
what a nice soufflé I made!
Your new skin itched, but you
remained silent as a stone.
And so we ate, avoiding each
other’s gaze, as darkness fell.

An Evening with Mr. and Mrs. Kurtz

“Break some glass and come on in, there’s
there’s plenty more to break here!” Mrs. Kurtz
said and cut a bloody pirouette across the foamy
carpet made glorious summer by this son

of a York Peppermint Patty–Mr. Kurtz–strutting
like the cock of the walk around the shards of glass,
carrying on some counterpoint to her nonsense,
he being vaguely aware of how silly they both were.

Guiltily, we grabbed some drinking glasses and
shattered them against the fireplace, the sound
reverberating and spreading like panic in a crowd,
and we sobbed without knowing why except our

hosts were crying, also, showing us their bleeding
hands and feet, Mr. Kurtz wounded even in his side,
and we decided that we could worship them–they
would do nicely as deities, since all others had failed us.

Love/Hate

Love/Hate

“How can you hate what I love?” she asked
draped over the sofa, ellipses stuck in her throat…

“Because I hate everything,” he answered
and deposited a lifetime of trust in an off-shore
account that the instantly forgot existed.

She thought about his words, and then she
thought about her relationship to the words,
so she took a powder and disappeared somewhere

up north, and he collected fall-out shelters
and moved among them like a wanted man.

Benefit for the Self-Obsessed

I absorbed the style of your night,
your courage like a good-sized cocker
spaniel, crouched and hackles raised,
ready to protect you at a moment’s notice.

But you don’t need protecting, do you,
with your prodigious smile and thick
intentions, hogging all the finger sandwiches
at the Banquet of Forlorn and Spurned Lovers?

My, how you haven’t grown, remarked
the 135-year old woman, frail and blue.
It was true enough, though you rejected
her words like you rejected me year ago.

You moved with the the speed of paper
cut, small but fast, redolent with outsized
pain while the rest of us redrew our maps,
marking off the places deemed too dangerous.

Dinner Date

By the time your mother invited me over
and baked her famous blood casserole,
I had already invented the art of recycled
pain, jettisoning any hope that we would
have a normal love or even a normal day,

so it wasn’t weird when your mother–
a member of the Guilt of the Month Club,
standing there with oven-mitted hands,
offering us her family history baked into
savory strangeness, some relative of hers

gasping out culinary horror– spooned
giant heaps of the stuff onto our silvery plates,
and we ate dutifully, aware of the darkness
clotting our throats, making it hard to breath,
let alone swallow the years of agony in each bite.

At Last, Lunch With You

There is a teeny bit
of mayonaise left for
your intestine sandwich.
Holy crow, that’s some
good stuff, especially

from the bellies of stupid,
fat, and juicy people.
“Ewww!” you scream.
“That’s gross! What
the hell’s wrong with you?”

“The underside of naked
mole rats in heat,” I reply,
“is gross, as in the inside
of a mongoose’s eyeball.
It’s pasty and not at all fragrant.”

For that, you relegate me
to the Hinterlands of Ill-Omens
and I… I take the suicide less
contemplated, and that will
make none of the headlines.