March Twentieth

It's the first day of spring
and death is in the air

The box car is full
and slowly departs

Crammed with weary
old friends taking their
motivations with them

Into strange darkness
streaming down river

The moon's sole
reflection white

Upon the surface
wave letting apart

Into well synchronized
angel moth wings

In motion appearing
to be saying goodbye



for Bill Knott

Our lives' strange trajectories
have been laid bare here
while I stare in shock
at the lines dancing
drowned in artificial
light, why it was only
8 days ago that I stood
in Mountain View Park
(a quite un-euphemistic
way of rubbing our nose
in it, don't you think?)
and witnessed for myself
for the very first time
an entire flock of colored
balloons scrawled upon
with various Sharpee markers
messages like "On the wings
of angels, SYOTOS, I love
you Doug" while Neil Diamond's
"Coming To America" played
and we all stared up at the
flock of helium balloons
as they became smaller
and smaller until they
precisely resembled a
swarm of human sperm
flung Egg-Sunward,
I even took the opportunity
to casually mention the beauty
of this sight to the Mormon Bishop
standing beside me, "He's off
to a new life, just like your speech,"
I said while his back stiffened.
I've been biting my nails all day
before I learned online
on facebook that you
had at long last gone
to sleep with your hands
crossed on your chest
looking as though you
are flying into yourself.


Cold Front

Apart from cracks on the Formica 
counter top around the bending 
curve of my eye I can not discern 
anything through my shot glass
The rumblings of a city in dusk 
seep through the slurry of hushed 
undertones merging stainless steel 
clinks from glasses slowly stirred 

In this labyrinth collecting mirrors 
no one bothers looking at each other 
directly for the point of that was lost 
long ago with the reflected hosts 

I sink into the magnified pores 
of her face held balanced on a stack 
of merging surface edits like a drawn  
bath displaced by a weary body 

It's been many revolutions since 
I can remember spring time   
and for that I should ordinarily feel 
sadder than the beer ads on the wall

Cheerfully I determine that mixing 
drinks with indentured silver ware 
may distract the focus from a certain
familiar melody floating by 

Its coruscating pattern of decaying 
notes drifts along into the distance 
like so many flakes of ash rendered 
gray as the moon in winter

The cracked fields of this lit valley  
fade before the inland sea evaporates 
into silence here on a world whose 
name evokes nothing but dirt

I'd rather not think about it since
my drink became too evenly mixed 
for me to want another sip from 
the cold inversion boiling outside 



Demons possess mankind yet do not exist
autonomously.  Only by taking possession of
an individual may a demon come into existence. 
This old secret has been lost on a population whose
imaginations always seem to get the best of them,
but what can you do.  While everyone is caught up
in the fading phantoms of their conversation, angels
walk among us.  Their reality determined once again
in the full blown possession of men.  Each extend
their arms through the race of human kind,
engaging in their dance after wings have spread
and talons blackened the bedsheets in shades of the darkest wine.
Yes, angels and demons are real my friend, intertwined
in genetic suspension they spell m - o - n - g - r - e - l
as close to a definition of modern man as one could understand. 
We project these innate qualities of ours to protect us from who we are.
To distract us enough that we just might think devils like these
could be real, bring us to our knees, and plead for the angels to save us
when all along the only ones who could do that are ourselves;
oh, yes, those mythic beings are real, alright:  they'd watch over
us at night if they hadn't fallen asleep themselves...
during the day they're usually spotted in hallways, 
bathrooms, and cars. Anyplace there are mirrors  
for one to look into.  Like you.  Both demons and angels 
are each distinguished by purity. Therefore true possession 
amounts to the total absolvement of impurities.
The prison of flesh where all angels and demons are banished
has been known throughout history by one word, humanity.   


Don't Touch the Red Button

They're not crazy because their colorful discourse
can be balanced like any chemical equation;
trim the adjectives, adverbs, and advertisements
and what do you have left? Birdsong.

You have to have a head full of nuts
to even try to communicate a thought
in the first place. No one knows what
crazy is. Only relayed messages exist.

It stands to reason that why should we worry
if the sands of reason blow away in a hurry
we keep stacking our grains up into a keep
and occupying our brains so at night we creep.

If we're asleep in our dream not knowing
we're sleeping are we awake in our lives,
unaware we're alive? Don't touch the red
button unless you know the difference.

Between dreaming and living it ends up
becoming our parent's advice.  In this metaphor
what does the red button stand for besides
the reset of complete annihilation?