Tuesday, June 30, 2015

shaping the future with broken hands



quiet again in the
room of empty chairs
except for maybe
the sound of dust

maybe the absence of
your boyfriend
or the memory of his fists

the way that
drawing blood can be
called love

the names of
your children

their small
perfect mouths filled
with broken glass




Monday, June 29, 2015

sea of tears



reach yr empty hands up to
the surface

teach them to burn flags

to assassinate kings

all solutions create new problems,
and so the trick
is selective blindness

sat there in the back yard and
pointed out jupiter and
venus to my sons

spent most of my time
worrying that i was failing them

days got colder until we
ended up at zero

sick at christmas

sky of dirty glass

say to her i am not you and
then say you are not wakoski

say you are not atwood

it helps to be alone

it helps to believe in
redemption

we will all end up dead no
matter how many gods
clutter our rooms

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Parable



Sitting in a freshly painted room, thinking
that I should be leaving, thinking that it
smells like rain. I have left my son's globe
on the living room table. I have left too
many bills unpaid, too many windows open,
and the truck is almost out of gas. The
woman walking down the stairs knows my
name, smiles like we're old friends, says
she lost everything in the flood. Says her
husband left her for a younger woman,
but she can't be more than twenty-two,
twenty-three. She can't stop crying, and
I can't think of anything to say. I need to
get home in case there's a fire. In case the
phone rings. I am tired of waiting for
disaster.
  

mark tobey








an ephemeral silence





Thursday, June 18, 2015

a gunman opens fire



when all you want to do is sing,
or maybe
be told you’re beautiful,
a baby falls from the sunfilled sky,
a rain of weeping hawks, of
angels with broken wings,
and do you remember the
sound of me holding your hand?


were we actually ever in love w/
anything more
than the idea of escape?


i need to believe
that we were.



Monday, June 15, 2015

kirchner's suicide, and mine, and yours




yrself beautiful in this
grey october sunlight and
everything i say distorted by fear



every wall
hung with a cross



the windows broken
or thick with dust
or looking out over
a million tiny bones



this woman in
the bathroom crying



this baby found
floating in the tub



an old story and that i
tell you i'm sorry
fifteen years too late



that i dream about
the accident
then wake up whole



visit the house
of my father's ashes



can remember
nothing about him
but his anger


dreaming america



the streets all smeared white on
sunday morning
and the sunlight without end



the names of the dead
written down then forgotten



what they sound like is silence


like human bones falling
from the sky



the shadows they cast on
empty fields



bare trees rising up
out of black water on the
edges of all the worthless towns
i've ever lived in



all of the people i've left behind


the ones i've
been left behind by



and what our words
eventually form are maps
but none of the missing are found
and none of the beaten
comforted

and your sister finds
a new lover



forgets the
names of her children



their faces


mistakes desperation for love


nothing any of us haven't
done at some point


2nd wish







Sunday, June 14, 2015

1987 ford mustang with a FOR SALE sign in the rear window



and the skinny girl who
gets out of it



the price of a pack of cigarettes
(or the name of a baby
who will never know her father



who will be dead before
his fifth birthday)
and what she does is smile and ask
if you're interested



says she needs twenty bucks


says the kid probably
won't even wake up



and the only thing you
know how to be is human