Tuesday, February 26, 2019


I think of all the decades
I eked it out
and scratched it out
and to what end 
I ask myself  
but I did it
and I still don't know
why you couldn't manage
the simple multi-tasking
of putting one foot forward
and then the other one
and then the other one again
it's called life
and I still don't know why
with all you had
and what you left behind
you didn't want it.

Yes, I'm pissed at you

having seen most of your pictures 
and there are a lot of them
(I can't...I can't...get over 
 that white bathing suit)
and falling in love with a dead
legend is strictly the purview of
hopeless romantics and I raise
my hand
no longer
having been around
a few live ones in my time.

And you need to know that there

is the person and there is the legend
and the two don't necessarily have
to have a lot to do with one another. 

But the legend

rolls head over ass downhill
in all that white powder 
until it becomes larger than life 
or at least as big
as Frosty's balls and 
that's disproportionate to what
any human can carry.

In you last collection

you mentioned carbon monoxide
multiple times--
you were dropping hints
like Hansel and Gretel 
with a loaf of Wonder Bread.

Yes, you weren't right in the head.

Is that all we're going to say?
Is that where we should leave it?

Maybe, like me,  
you asked yourself
to what what end... 
and saw the answer come up empty.

You wrote: We should meet in another life,

we should meet in air, me and you.

I'm just crazy enough to think

you might have been talking to me.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019


Note: Today's poem is an encore I originally posted way back in 2011. Time flies. Which is what this one is all about. Among my current readers, I am certain there are many, perhaps most, who haven't seen it. So please add your comments, if so moved, to the "vintage" comments already staring back at us like a sepia-tinged photo from the past at the bottom of the page.

Everyone who was alive in 1885 has jumped ship.
Where'd they go? We don't know.
But they've taken their secrets with them.

And you and I, fast becoming museum pieces,
are on that same journey from the relevant to the obscure--
eyes soon to be staring from a sepia-toned photo
in the glass encased confines of the local historical society.

And what have you contributed to the dialogue, my boy,
and will any of it survive the fuzzy TV snowstorm screen of time?
And what would they know of the real you
if indeed a name or a photograph survived?

Still, you'd like to be remembered--and don't know why--
though you think it has something to do with being loved.
And you're content to write shit in silent protest of your solitude.
And you feign indifference in your involuntary celibacy,
telling yourself that ass isn't all it's cracked up to be--
though in truth it's just like food--no big deal until you have to go without.

And you wonder at what exact moment did you cross the line
from "so fine" to something more akin to what the cat drug in.
And why didn't anyone warn you of the impending disaster?
Now, generally, you avoid mirrors, though sometimes
you seek them out with a morbid curiosity.

In elementary school we sang "Frere Jacques"
and "When Those Caissons Go Rolling Along"
in our gruffest soprano voices.
"Play That Funky Music White Boy"
had not yet seared its way into our psyche--
the circadian rhythm of time still on the verge
of breaking into a more primal beat.
Now, all the young women are turning bi-sexual,
SO TIRED of waiting for guys to call...
and the beat goes on.

Dawn's curtain rises above the prairie.
Actors resigned to their fate
begin to stir and vie for parking spots.
Sweeping west, reptilian eyes blink and greet the sun.
Palm fronds sway in the breeze,
and your island dreams are dashed
in the swell of concrete--the shimmering heat
rising to meet the sky, and you and I
are no closer to our first hello and our last goodbye.

Day is done. The local TV newscasters--
so Shirley Temple serious--
so imbued with their own sense of self-importance,
as if anyone will give a damn
about the words they mouth from a teleprompter
ten years from now...or even next week.
Surely, my boy, YOU can manufacture
something with a longer shelf-life.

Or maybe not.

Maybe just another face in the group photograph
turning yellow with age--
waiting for some stranger
contemplating the swift passage of time.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019


February 14th arrives...

Like Audrey Hepburn 

crying in the rain
like Rita Hayworth
dancing into your dreams
like a golden slipper
slipping through your fingers.

Love will take you nowhere

but it can get you through the night.

Like Kim Novak
and William Holden
slow dancing to "Moonglow"
like Bill Murray and
Scarlett Johansson tripping
through Tokyo
like Brando dropping his pants
on the dance floor
like Sylvia Plath
singing "Nothin' Says Lovin'
Like Something From The Oven"
like a mysterious painting
of Laura hanging on the wall...

I made you up inside my head.

Who cares.

Let's go to bed.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019


Corn flakes get so soggy
so fast
not like grape nuts
which will hold up for a while.
So be quick with your flakes
and let your nuts soak a while.

Do you miss any of the houses

you used to live in?
Or any of the mouses
that stayed there with you?
Or did you just methodically murder them?


You want fries with that?

The fakers and the fakirs come and go

charming your snake for a while
until someone yells:
Put that thing down!

What will be your saving grace

a la Steve Miller in a psychedelic haze,
and if you only save face
by saying grace
will that be enough for you?

Life is a game

pick a struggle
take a side
or just sit in the stands
drink beer
and shout obscenities.

To work on the work

is all there is left.
And all that matters.