Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Poem - i never had it/ so good

now here's a
fucking disaster

i go outside
for a smoke

and in the alley
i see a bird
dead in it's nest

the whole
thing fell out of
the tree

and got run
over by a car


my only problem
is to quit smoking

and replace a broken
french press

i never had it
so good

Oct 2008

Friday, September 26, 2008

Messy, Isn't It?

They say you are a failed writer. They say you never grew up. They say you wrote horrible poetry. You did write some horrible poems. But some of your writing is the best writing I've ever read. I'm sick of words and clever writers who are so good, they can write all day. Some things you write are broken, but I keep them, like I treasure a piece of driftwood -- just a hunk of flotsam, but it can't be manufactured, it is totally unique in all the world and will never happen that way again. Fuck perfection. Fuck being a great writer. Do you think you can actually capture it, the inexpressible thing, without mangling it with impression? Writing words about a feeling to express it, is like taking a flamethrower to a tree. People who criticize you don't like driftwood. They've probably never been to the beach, never got wet in the fog, never hiked anywhere, they don't know how to fish or build a fire, and they hate wool sweaters. People who look down on you live in a city, and they like to argue about world events, and they hate their landlord. Fuck them. I'm sorry you gave up. But I understand. Messy, isn't it?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Two Fall Vignettes


I see snow shovels, bins of them, today at the supermarket. These things have appeared like magic, optimistically bright orange. Later I am sure we will have bins of metal ones, and they will be colored a special macho red.


A child does not wait for the light to change. When it is safe he crosses the street, and so ignoring me on my bicycle, I almost run him over. He's a tough kid, I know the type. He might hate his Mom, his Dad, or both. But he still wears a helmet. And he always gets his homework done on time.

God Damned Phone

I thought the phone was in another room, but I see it is here, and it hasn't rang. I didn't expect it to ring, but it still is a shock. I'm surprised, but I don't know why.

the unhorsing of gilbert

dedicated to gona


he fails.

he becomes a real person.


no more soft night

do you
know someone
who is strong
and invincible?


every time
you laugh when
you are angry
you become crueler.


everything is larger


the face in the mirror
who is he?

is he me?

is he you?

i have seen his face
all my life.


in the bruised
flesh deep down
is the blood &

more testimonies
moving unsung


O flesh

O brain

O body


as i walked
i thought i saw
a ghost inside the dark
reflections of a
blank window

a car sped up
the street
its headlamps
illuminating me
and making my dark
quite sinister


a good lesson
(one that lasts)

it can take
a long time.

there are no

for something

that will last.


dogs lay
in the road &
try to lick the moon


do you miss home?


can you remember everything?


at night there are
dark horses everywhere

in the sky
in the house outside in
the trees

looking out
looking in


this night i think:

in chinatown it snowed
and everybody came out
to look at such fine small particles
falling indifferently
roof to roof
street to street

the snowflakes formed a thin
thin crust

the snowflakes
dusted red and white puffs of paper
from the exploded firecrackers
of the lunar new year


why are we all gilbert?


the dog
he types

it is a good poem

woof woof

woof woof

woof woof


i got mugged
in broad daylight.

the mugger made it look
as if
we were shaking





I published "the unhorsing of gilbert" in 1992, the work being a series of poems that would pop up in my head, revolving around a central theme, all by themselves. In the writing of this, occasionally I almost drove off the road. When I was done, I had a sweet little pocket-book of poetry that I gave to my freinds. On the cover is a medieval illustration of Lord Gilbert Reginald Falworth being knocked off his horse at a joust in England in the 1400s, thus the name of the collection.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Poem - i don't need the help

i don't need the help
but i hope you are reading this

my days are fine
like yours we get through them

i want something more
but if i get it i'll get it

i probably don't deserve it
many people i know will tell you so

Poem - brautigan wrote

brautigan wrote
gee you're so beautiful
its starting to rain

and when i read that
i remembered her
and how it felt to see her

i started to cry

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Poem - compelling subtle heartache

compelling subtle heartache
in the great land of america
because we killed all the natives
or moved them where we liked
and we are unconnected to the land
it takes thousands of years
to forge that kind of link

o america some day
you will feel whole again
after 1,000 years has gone by
& every step on the earth
beneath your feet is full of the dead
your old old gone by dead
and your sin taken on fulfilled

-- for David Foster Wallace
1962 - 2008

Monday, September 22, 2008

The Submersible of Dreams

I'd intentionally sleep with my face towards the clock, so I knew how time was getting on. I could take a peek at any time. The night became an ocean, and my consciousness was a submarine, trolling the depths between dreams and the world of things. It made my side hurt, sleeping that way, but hearing the drunks stumbling their way home on the street at 3 AM was priceless. After 5 AM when it got colder I'd succumb, roll to the left, and pass completely out of my mind. But 2/3rds of the whole night I have covered, in the submersible of dreams.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Ladies and Gentlemen

Ladies and Gentlemen,

First of all, we apologize for the temporary disruption of space and normal time continuation in your Universe. This was due to an mistake on our part in the calibration of our means of transportation. But on this subject, there were some hilarious situations that you thought were quite funny, if your newspapers are to be believed. We avoided television, radio, and the Internets, because we found those communication mediums insulting. We also suggest everyone on Earth subscribe to a most excellent local newspaper, "The Mercion County Clarion", of Mercion County, Louisiana. You will find this newspaper to have a few top notch people who can actually write the news.

Going forward, there may be some residual distortion to space time in parts of New York, Philadelphia, and the 60302 area code. It will be the usual kinds of things you've all doubtlessly experienced before, temporary spontaneous gender switching, minor gravity inversion, speaking in unfamiliar languages, high freezing temperatures, intelligent color, and rapid hair growth. Serious problems like abrupt miniaturization, and/or loss of scale in the relation to one object to another appearing in externally appearing phenominon appearing appearing appearing has been corrected.

In closing, we'd like to thank the President of the United States of America for donating the beautiful State of Idaho. This was the kind of material time share we always wanted to have -- and who would have thought plants could be so funny! And intermittent precipitation of H20 from those cloud objects! Wow! Living in an oxygen based compressed atmosphere is hilarious.

As good neighbors, we promise to keep everyone updated with the latest information as we get busy settling into the State, the North American Continent, and your Planet -- I'm sure you can hardly wait for more news.




89d9h9-0------------0 iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii


Once again, we apologize for that little accident with the Women's Rotary Club at Bent Creek, CO. When they started speaking to us, we had no idea what sound was, and we assumed they were trying to kill us.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My Son's Cellular Ambition

My son's cellular ambition is to take over my cellular ambition. I don't completely understand this aim, and neither does he, but he is, in fact, only 2 years old. And I must say, I do not hold it against him. I do know he fervently wishes it, because many times when I am sitting here, writing, smoking, reading, or drinking a beer -- he sidles up to me humming & hawing. He'll press his little body against the side of me, slowly, gradually, inquisitively -- all the time talking and holding a toy or his bottle. He keeps at it like a cat, pressing against me until I have to shift my great big bulk, compared to his. With enough pushing and wiggling, the job will be done. Every son does this to his father, it is inevitable that a son tries. And the blessed dads decide to give way.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Poem - tonight you are not here/ with me alas

tonight you are not here
with me alas

but pretend we are together
& observe the moon

see how perfect and
bright it is & never lonely


heute sind Sie nicht hier
bei mir leider

aber vorgeben wir zusammen sind
& Beobachten den Mond

sehen, wie perfekt und
hell es ist & nie einsam

Monday, September 15, 2008

100 Years Old

I want to be nice, so I tell people I meet they're going to live to be 100 years old. But I'm wrong all the time.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Poem - what about the cigarette?

what about the cigarette?

the cigarette is a liar

the cigarette was at
marie antoinette's funeral

the cigarette fell on
the moathouse floor
in beaux in the 11th century

the cigarette was behind
napoleon's left ear one mile
from the gates of moscow

the cigarette pushed a lever
that dropped an atomic bomb
on nagasaki

what about the cigarette?

the cigarette has no compassion

it waterboarded prisoners
in the philippines with the
japanese navy

it was pro ethnic cleansing
in croatia in 1989

it kissed marolyn monroe
and just walked out of
her apartment smiling

the cigarette was the one
who shot precisely from
the grassy knoll

what about the cigarette?

with its cold dead eye

with those mean hard hands

with its calculating brains


how it will do anything to get its way

Monday, September 08, 2008

Poem - new york

we are all just
passing through here
stock brokers
cops street preachers
bums tourists
devils saints and

"i'm in new york
for god's sake"
5th and w 33rd
the only cost
for that cigarette
is a story you're
happy to tell me
in the form of a
diatribe fable &
cautionary love-

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Poem - i asked

i asked her
if she was in my
memory the
right way she
is not

we let time
do away with us
and we don't
care now to
fix anything

Poem - now it/ is raining

now it
is raining

wet deck turns
pale silver

tree leaves
are just turning

fall is
almost here