Calm

The crickets are loud enough
to drown the sorrow
for as long as you can take it.
Each puff blind
burst
orange and stinging.
Sometimes only half a smoke before
sorrow soars above the crickets;
you rush back in
constant hum and rattle.
Soon once again it lures you back,
and once again it’ll deem you worthless.

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Draftlast (#6)
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Implication

Lines only exist as descriptions; it’s the same with words

which flare into being and vanish,

straining against vacuum.

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Draftlast (#5)
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Yeow


Yeow, rich girl,
in a sexy yellow car.
Oh, let me leap in,
we needn’t go far—
And your head
is a fucking
Sunflower
which is being smushed in your
(What’s that called?
the distance between
your head and
the roof of a car)

in your zero head-clearance car,
which is STILL yellow,
as I pull away.


Episode Link | Archive Item | YouTube

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Hat Tip

Sunflower by Leaping-Faith
Some rights reserved. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 License.

Draftlast (#2)
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A Bit Further In

I felt lift
the lifting handle move
of a crouch car door grab.

Like I was the tactility-enhanced model
of a spatially normalized dark-explorer.

A voice perked up,
glad for not forgetting the coffee;
Its little ears vanish.

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It’s a Concert

In the deep woods,
A few fences down,
Country music plays.

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Behind Your House

In the easement (let’s say)
a bicycle wheel is rusting into a splintered utility pole,
as (just for fun) a pile of green glass encroaches
upon (why not) crumbling concrete.

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Clearance

Nylon Flux Drive
nuclear-powered
avoidance-machines
Buy one get one one half.

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Squeezed

It is twilight. There’s a chill in the air. It’s November but it’s not quite winter in these parts yet. The cloudy sky looks fake. It looks like a children’s book recreation of a sky. It’s chalk and charcoal and crayon. Hard edges softly meeting. Weaved textures. It’s dark out here. And lonely. No, lonely isn’t the word. The word is scary. It is cold and dark and scary. I am alone on a compost heap.

The compost heap has been overgrown with grass, and it is covered with leaves. The ground is soft and give in under your feet. I pick and root around the soil. I’m having fun smushing it down. I like to pick out pebbles, and stems, and little bits of little things out of the heap. I find an onion. Or a potato. It’s a potato shaped like an onion in layers. It’s already been cut. It tastes like an onion.

It’s a still night and it’s getting colder. It’s awfully quiet out. The soil is warm and damp and it’s fun in smush in and dig through. I take a short stroll to the other compost heaps. They’re mostly all the same. The moon is hidden behind a tree. I walk back to the original heap.

I have misplaced the onion I was eating. I think I find it. I lean down to pick it up. But it’s more like an onion onion. This one isn’t precut and the outside turns green. It’s like it’s an onion embedded in an avocado. I pick out the most oniony parts to nibble on.

I hear voices in the distance. I stand and stretch. It sounds like they’re talking to me. Or trying to. Or just wanting to talk to me. But it’s lonely out here. And scary. And I can’t see where the voices come from. They’re making sense, these voices. They are talking about things I don’t understand. I like these voices.

I stretch and look up at the innocent sky. I stretch my arms out shoulder level and lean back and look straight up at the sky. I feel like I should talk back to the voices. I try. I can’t move my mouth. All I want to say is “love.” But I can’t move my mouth. The more I try the scarier it gets. I close my elbows and now I want to scream. I want to scream but I want to listen to the voices. You can’t scream and listen to voices at the same time.

I decide that I should fly. I haven’t flown in a while and I miss it. I think I remember how to. It’s always scary at first, but then it gets better. What you do is jump. And you jump again. I remember. I jump. I see the top of the trees. Then I see layers of clouds. And then I see stars. I wonder if the voices come from the stars. When I still can’t say “love” I say “happy”.

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Draftlast (#3)
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Nostalgia

OK. Here’s the scene:
You’re helping your family pack up a dead house.

Here’s what you know:
Charlie is your brother-in-law. He was married to your sister for thirty years.
Leland is their middle son who died some 15 years ago. His death spurred their decision to move back to Texas.
Linda is your sister. She is moving back to Alaska. She’s been through some hard times. She’s here.
And your nephew, Ben, is here. You’re getting to know each other.

You are going through boxes of the dead. Faded photos. The ashes of Charlie and Leland.
You find several Zippos. You begin to wonder about the kind of guy that carries a Zippo.

You see him in a cowboy hat, bumping down the dirt roads of rural Texas in a pick-up truck. You see him turn up the radio to a favored classic rock song. You see him thumping out time on top of the cab. As the song winds down he looks out the window. He winks at you over the top of his of sun-glasses, and it makes you giggle.

You pause there for a while. You smell hay and diesel and dust.
Eventually he looks away, pulling a silver Zippo from his plaid shirt.
You think he is genuine. He is committed. He’s in it for the long-haul. He is in it for the simple joy.
This is a guy that expects permanence.
He expects trouble, and expects pain.
He expects growing old.
He expects dying–
but not at fifty.

Sometimes there’s a redhead. Sometimes you share a smoke with her.
You stumble out of a bar. You get halfway to her house before deciding to go back to the car. Then you’re sitting on a bench. By the time you’re in the car you’re reading Bukowski. You both laugh, until Charlie throws that killer punch of his. Now there is silence. She looks away into the frosty light.

You pause there for a while. You watch smoke swirl around her.
It’s a summer day. You’re in the Arb. Eventually you’re on a blanket on a hidden hill. The ground is wet. She is going through her bag, pulling out scraps of words. Practice letters in Spanish, descriptions, budgets, apartment leads, observations. These are dreams. You are charmed. You join the expedition.
You remember her history. You know she misses it. You know she longs to look back at a future that should have worked out.
You see it now addicts and occasional smokers carry plastic lighters. They work, but you don’t expect them to last. You don’t expect pain, you don’t expect permanence.

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Monsters

I’ve never got into monsters, spooks, and the likes
Life is hard enough without inventing such things.
Like being shot at over Korea, or the screeching tires
of your oldest son’s last moments, the curses and screaming
rage of your father…these are monsters enough.

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Draftlast (#4)
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