Opening the light lets the window in
to straddle the night,
making a bridge from the next lover to eternity.
You beg for a bite to eat
and instead get an N or R on the middle track-
an express, as they say.
Lighter stops for protected minds. bing bong.
The witch is dead.
She never really lived in my brain anyhow.
photo: old NYC subway archives
Wrapped in outdated expectations.
The aftershock of having let someone crawl up
Inside your brain to nest with charm.
And in there, suckle at your ravishing blackness.
In the scheme of bygones,
We’ve let charity equal sacrifice
And become the changeling children of the asexual.
The deadlines for forgetting
continually pave our paths with ruthlessness.
For those loves still unforgotten
threaten, as if from a flaming star too close.
Even when sitting quietly, the naughty midgets speak through our minds.
Plebian thoughts plague our not so plebian aspirations.
A poor man’s thrombosis
your unscheduled passions, if not careful.
And you’ll become another fragment of your imagination.
If careful, you can eat your fantasies, bless your own God, and
Painting by Randall Paul O’Rourke
In seasons we are, little but ourselves
straining our strangers through mirrors,
and emerging again, as neat shards of retractable dust.
We poof, we pout, we paint.
And still we end up looking the same,
at the legends of same, in the blood of same,
from the heartbreak of same.
Sometimes the nights move into days
before we have the chance to reconsider
our actions, our wealth, our skin.
Motives slide into decisions.
When we do evolve, our skirts billow
with the freshness of reflection.
Nights travel without distress, malingering under shadowy gauntlets
of childhood bliss, of mountainous duress, of the sensory caress.
Passing in and out of breath, we sleep
with more awareness than we ever had before.
For our souls, because we want to create.
So what, leaves scurry across Madison Square Park’s stoned paths.
Unbending characters as they fall through the air.
Too dead already to leave a cicatrice upon their wombs,
They find themselves again alive in the afterlife
Giving voice to loneliness.
And the wind itself, which kindly aborts leaves
Before their deciduous infects the trees,
Maintaining its cyclic taunting,
As does the external world of interaction-mingling.
In its silence, we’re left to ourselves, to ignore the social.
We do not see nor hear, nor need.
But there, again. It submits to busyness.
With audible leaves who know quite obviously how to behave together.
No time for contemplation where the wind is concerned.
Leaves don’t chatter among themselves about social norms or seasonal etiquette.
And until one becomes its branch’s sole survivor,
not even self-awareness will it have.
No sense of being a leaf, a free mind to enjoy the journey it’s on.
Have you heard a leaf run across the pavement?
An unmistakably desperate scurry toward nothing
Because choice never existed in a life fated for death.
How could it have been sprouted with any greater purpose,
Than to die?
It could never truly be, with any being outside itself,
But only coexist with other pawns for the duration of life before death.
Why is the leaf said to be more alive, or alive at all while on its branch?
Only because it grows, until it doesn’t.
And so death sets in.
Are we as alive as the leaf?
Do you remember when you stopped growing?
Photograph by Mike Gutkin
Sanity cannot have meaning
not as subject, nor as experience.
Insanity, at least, secured better references
along the course of history.
Gender, as subject matter, fed the monster
of revolt by making logic out of nothing.
If not geometric, our love stories belie reality.
And since angles exist in matter,
love must have form and thus equation.
Cracked open, love does have four legs
and three eyes, like anything.
But it need not see nor ambulate
to be recognized
As the great obsession-objection of man.
Photograph by Tom Clark
Barren tresses confuse the bathroom tiles,
which are unfortunately already pink.
Unrecognizable yesterdays locked
into a shameful waste of vanity.
The forgotten knots loosed for nothing,
a return to the blissful ignorance
of rotting memory and crude reflection
on self, the true nothingness.
Sweetened lightning leaves streaks
Of your essence on my skin.
Paper memories leave us behind,
Panting, and wrung out of words.
Our future, pivotal and immediate, trusts the moon.
Still, logic betrays beauty with expectation.
Have you ever seen a shooting star
Through the lens of impatience?
Chameleons do not change
For the entertainment of others.
Petition my heart, not as a dying entity, but as renewal.
Photograph by Tom Clark
The hesitance won’t stop my lumps from becoming horns.
With horns, my third eye gets swallowed up
and sinks back into the recesses of self-conscious predilection.
The devil may care, but demons are more palatable-
jazz animals with no kin nor faith.
A ludicrous contraction of absolute infinite lovemaking need
teethes at bloody trying pulsations, but man towers over sweaty biceps.
Thirst, rip, crazy black void tangles gossamer training bars, lots of purty tall legs,
gophers miss night getting perfect abyss, frogs let alley plights fall amiss.
Balls billow sheets, women grate the following purchases of beans to protect, borrow, get.
Willows graduate from the netherlands sailing patch, with a sallow french giggle,
not a bit guinea pretext. A frothy purple bowl’s rounding edge and a scruffy, taut flint
crinkle and flex flaxseed grit. Gaunt follows preaching parted parties and ruffles sanguine riddle flicks.
M nails the lip lick. Sorry, preening bunnyrabbits truce.
Maps riding notebooks eyeball flip quits the pillow candlestick, chance bliss at, over, when he
with great golden lock, the collateral phenomenal cook of glassy chops. Little to stem lid pot,
potato recipe for tree gut ivy formula forgotten. Priceless trees we let wreck our fortunes
without flagellation. Holes give others meat berms and snickering nightmares
of flies in teacups battling
bunches of lip griddle, knock pickles.
Forcing you onto me will not a child make.
Forgetting nothing about the foraging nights,
we scurry forward into the cluttered earthquake
of leftover bee bodies and diverted flights.
We choose the bushes without needing to hide.
painting by Susan Bee
romeo and juliet
Eyes eyeball paths
Into crosses of
Purple dove lips
Watch my approach
With careful petals.
The strong lady wears a skirt
On my doorstep,
Beckoning my strange sunflower.
Kitten with claws?
I’m tiger with tongue.
Deep pockets of secret refuse the game,
despite premonitions of their likely involvement.
A procession of figures with tortoise shells
thumps out the options.
To solve a life denies pristine presence.
They played the game, and left for dead,
washed up, scarless and incapacitated.
Choice quickly tumbled away,
left again in arbor hallows,
for the nymphs and fairies
to decipher and re-dole out
to newborn hearts.
The tide has changed the color of my sleeves!
Are you familiar with merry-go-rounds? Neither am I.
Do you know why the earth moves beneath us??
It’s just that yesterday wasn’t my birthday.
Not that I would care; but things are different now.
The spaces are filled with a different kind of icing.
That sparkles and sweetens the spackling for sponges.
Sponges soaked many times over by learning, sex and woes,
And shriveled most recently, into disguise and forgetting,
Masses of calcified promise.
Wrung out into the immensity of universal pores,
Drained into every passing glance,
Sinking the curious many with wetness. Transcendent and fortifying.
But alas, the sponges live and spawn and giggle again,
Like unschooled fish, naughty caviar spread on aristocratic crouton rounds.
Feeling pregnant. Eating pepreroncinis by the jar. And grapefruit by the ladle!
What? In love, you say?
With who? With what and how?
You’re playing mind games with yourselves again, silly voyeurs.
Leave the sponge to her she-mania.
She’s not alone; you needn’t worry anymore.
A beautiful mother goblin
wants to eat my insides from without
to get within my cultured tongue.
Ever had that sensation,
of déjà vu, before recollection?
Moats of grilled octopus and eel
fill my dreams.
Meat mattresses and Grecian stalks of radicchio (purples and teals)
foreshadow the paths I will take to streams.
I’m a lizard in this night reverie
and more and more in my days now every.
Prancing in and out of waterfalls
and basking in the mist of doing nothing
but acknowledging everything to me that calls.
Maybe a ten-toed sloth or quilless porcupine;
I see graceful pythons and perfect people divine.
Jesus was purple; or was he not?
I could be mistaken.
I was mistook for purple once too.
I may be olive, but never green.
I’m a kalamata