The hangover that made you late for the train
contained within its sickness a new distaste
for losing yourself in public scenes.
Vomitus small talk and corsets
of self-annihilation; a wildness drained
by one poorly mixed cocktail after
another. You woke up disgusted,
puking, rotten and foul-mouthed
so you could see beyond
the shadows of this play: there, inside
the round, acidic aspirin dissolving
in your brain — this vital flagrancy emerged:
I’ve not come from nowhere to be nothing;
gluttonous graces at my command, I stand
undone for the world to experience my becoming
alone, set apart, choosy and…
There’s an honesty between us
that out of hand instantly forgives
all the lies she’s telling me.
The way the weary dairy maid in spring
preemptively forgave the old crook
for stealing away her summer newborn.
Because he was a god. Because he was
her god. And she was his
to feed or slaughter
per whims of wind divined
by his fervent love of Eire.
Onto a grainy beach in brining subterfuge, she delivered me by means unexplained. I nodded when told our boat had to be ferried in secret on dark currents cured by ancient tears of cloven mystics…
When she got off
at zero past 2AM
I bound over, leaping
lanes of waning traffic
to an alley behind
the restaurant where we
meet up. Steamed and
liquor-stained from scores
of shot-glasses cleaned, I was
my usual disgrace.
Weary and bemoaning fresh
scars from improprieties born
in courses served to single men,
she was and always is to me
a reliable temptation. Laden
in her arms were packaged
leftovers from the family meal
concocted by up-and-coming
cooks and eager sauciers
aching to impress a chef
preyed upon by stars.
Hungry, she led me down a charted path of turns…
One thread-bare thing we called
a blanket served to warm us.
We shared it ’til our mother
died — when at thirteen we inherited
from her fall a second cover, heavier
in its scratch and weave. Tucked
beneath stale, woolen dreams
we incubated manhood separately
riving ourselves in loosened stitches
from the common nest of thatch and stone,
stretching to be nothing like her
and even less like each other.
When you talked
in your sleep, I lay still and
Feature night at South-by, after the show ended
Crowds mute and missing, sky buzzed, overly dark
The marquee celebrity perches, unnoticed
On the top step of a grandstand I designed,
Nameless, for the corporate entity that keeps
Keys to hasp and staple, hinge and
Label on those hatches leading down to my
Creative life, in a dungeon, gasping.
The set is real. I sketched it up last month,
Stayed lit three nights to meet the deadline
That gave me pneumonia. Now in REM
Sleep He appears, with a capital ‘H’ spoken
In an aching British accent, Mr. …
Where does stress reside in you?
Can you point to it?
Can it be seen in an X-ray or image from an MRI?
Can we weigh it on a scale or exact it with a surgeon’s knife?
Stress reveals itself in headaches, indigestion, irritability, restless nights, indecisiveness and disharmonious relationships. It’s lurking in your eating habits, cynicism and your waning sense of humor. It’s running your hormones, antagonizing blood pressure, bullying your libido.
But where is it, exactly? These symptoms are tangible, but their cause is invisible. It resides in your mind.
Yes, it’s all in your mind; which is…
Fall in love, serve true passion, be
ridiculously and rebelliously and
relentlessly compassionate. Let them ALL
off the hook! (you first).
Overlook that deceptively-entertaining,
conflict-mongering antagonist over there
because you’re just too damn busy building
something cool over here.
Be tamely sane in a wildman’s game.
Be wildly magical, unleashed inside the
comfort zone. Be a shamelessly rich,
comet-glazing-guru buying cosmic stocks
with pockets full of stardust, bank vaults
stacked with gilded, benevolent whims.
Be a rowdy, imperfect, unapologetic hero
of the cubicle; free the willing slaves
with your brazen kiss.
Be a “crazy dumbsaint of the mind;” pour sweet…