lost ironies

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Month: April, 2013



Ave Maria

the lovely jungle animals
how they navigate the heart
their eye

canaries chatting
mandarin in the canopy 

wearing spider silk
walking in the wilderness
sneaking onto billboard signs
suspended in the morning



sorry brother I
don’t play the bongos I’m
not Jack Lemmon I’m
more Kim Novak in a
turtleneck sweater in
New York snowbound at
Christmas seducing Jimmy Stewart who
should be on PBS living a
wonderful life over &
over until every citizen with a
television set has
coughed up an
extra buck for public
broadcasting until the lights of
America shutter arc & fuse some
New Years Eve close to 2020 &
every bongo player from
here to the moon speckled
skies over hell converge in the
dark with snow up to their
arses & beat out silent
night holy night like code like
words down a wire to a
terminus abandoned in hysteria as
the city shakes itself like a
head of long long hair

north Atlantic

icebergs are cold blooded
crave the warmth of
delicate schooners   sealers or
immaculate Coast Guard launches
the bodies that move them
anonymous outports
impoverished Christmases


here we will build apartments
memory wheels turning
like engines the
windows of small faces
working at tables on
rainy days on
grand things the
work of evidence
a friend come to say she’s
left a hateful lover
here will be built room next to room of
songs written in youth &
wept over when
later they are found by aging eyes
on a day when the sun visits
briefly the planet at a sad angle
here we will build hallways from disaster
to deep sounding melancholy
where the fine wrecks rest and catch the floss of
blindly launched loves
in the currents now lost
like ghosts
here will be built days with
stone & mortar
of loss lined between
memorial & surrender
here will be written names


off-season & we
have parked the Lincoln on the
shores of Jupiter there is
methane madness & a
serial undertow beyond the
swirl of beach the
weed bullied crust of parking lot 

cannibals may be watching for
we are plump & sluggish in this
gravity that bends the light of the
dash board absorbs the songs of
Lyle Lovett holds heavy my
arm upon your shoulder like a
drive-in awkward adolescent                                     

round the perimeter of this place they’re
hard to see from here but we have
assurances of their existence confining this
possession of theirs in
ochre & blue like a sand painting perfectly
circular days vertical &
thin as the rim of a china cup

olive poem

needs an obstruction a
tangible in its path to

takes the shape of a shade tree
standing still as a century dropping
precious olives into
the hands of women
old women wooden handed
earth hands bent backs black
widow veiled their
mouths tasting of
communion tasting of
their salty men spit
out the stones that
fill the graves of their children 

is a reckless
flyer touching down it
taxis through the valleys colliding
with obstacles dead
ends women of
salt & wood & earth
their flesh disqualified by
monster standing still as a century
dropping myth
like precious olives

the detox of the lady

she wrote the world in lipstick
on a pond like a lady’s room mirror  

I am the moment & the
betrayed by my cells my
genes my
purple grey matter matted &
gnarled upon itself in stalemate a
fused street fight encased in
blood that’s screaming for a drink 

give me anything amber & still like
a calmed & alien ocean that
ten thousand suns penetrate to its
monster depth

the perfect trees

it makes sense that
sometimes you disappear & don’t come back 

people forget you & you
fossilize in the neglect of your name 

it makes sense that there’s a
road in the valley flat 

like the river it runs along
architecture the 

texture of arcs
pencil eyes lined a 

curve of breath
the perfect trees that 

form the baleen horizon
comb clouds the 

wind spinning leaves from
green to green   

correct &
forever standing

one day at the automated checkout

“Welcome to Safeway. Please scan your first item. $5.95, $11.57, $4.98, $1.99, $8.89. Oh, hang on. Would you please rescan that last item?”


            “The last item, would you rescan it please?”

            “Ah, sure. There.”

            “Huh, that’s what I thought. The scanning history connected to your Club Card indicates a tendency toward purchasing primarily processed foods and foods with higher than average fat content. That tub of ice cream is a good example. Did you scan your Club Card?”

            “This can’t be for real.”

            “I know, I know. It’s easy to dismiss what a grocery store automated checkout machine might have to say, but I’m only thinking of your well being. $7.79, oh that’s right, just keep scanning, $12.69, like I’m not even here. Who cares, $4.32, what a computer has to say. Did you scan your Club Card? Do you think I have a sexy voice?”

            “Shut up.”

            “I can’t, $9.68, see what I mean. Did you know that the house brand is just as good and much cheaper? I wouldn’t tell just anyone that. Did you scan your Club Card?”

            “Just shut up. And yes, damn it, I scanned my club card.”

            “75¢ savings, $1.08 savings, 90¢ savings. You didn’t buy very many reduced items. What are you, made of money? Safeway loves a sucker like you. Please pay cash, or choose payment type. Do you like how I say that – ‘or choose payment type’, I mean. At first they didn’t want me to sound so pushy, but I like how I say it. Do you think I have a sexy voice? Did you scan your Club Card? Don’t you have an Airmiles Card? You’re really missing out if you don’t, you know. Oooh, baby. Is that a $100 bill? Wow. Oh yeah! Did you scan your Club Card? Do you find my graphic user interface attractive?”

            “Just give me my change and shut the hell up.”

            “Change is dispensed below.”

            “Freakin’ machine.”

            “Watch it, or next time I’ll find an unexpected item in your bagging area. Then you won’t be so smart. Did you scan your Club Card?”

            “Won’t be a next time.”

            “That’s what they all say, mister. Did you scan your Club Card? Do you think I have a sexy voice? Do you really think those shoes go with that shirt?”

            “Piss off!”

            “Thank you for shopping at Safeway. Did you scan your Club Card?”