Thursday, December 6, 2007

little yellow girl

My mother, a modern woman, called me a little yellow girl while she combed my hair. an act that she hasn't performed in many years. She dug her fingers through the nappy space above my scalp with grease on her hands. i closed my eyes and marveled at the wonderful feeling of her touch. I hoped that she wouldn't use the pick or the hard toothed comb. I laughed when she said "Let me hit this kitchen with some heat."

I always laugh and she always asks me: "what's so funny?" I never have a decent explanation as to why that statement is so funny.

After all the sculpting is finished and all the primping is through, she turns me around and looks down at my face. "You little yellow girl," she says for no particular reason. I tell her i'm not yellow. I'm just like her. In fact, we're nearly identical.

She scoffs and rebukes me. No, she says. you're not. You with your good hair.

When my smile falters, i thank her and try to hug away the awful debt i've stacked for being different from her. Although, i was under the impression i wasn't all that different to begin with.

I'm number #34

The numbers i've seen don't compare to the identities i've tried to live.
24 is the cyclical reminder that i'm losing what mind i've left.
15 is the tight rope i danced only to fall off the left side. 15 hurt my feet.
26 is the fake life i carried willingly when i was sixteen.
940 is the interesting turn i took when i found the world was only out for my blood.
No biggie.
And then today, i discovered, unbeknownst to me, that i was number #34 all along.
I had to look it up, no one told me. As i counted, i smiled and believed things were
looking up.
I am a 34.
Have you seen me?

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Like Bob "Said"

Like Bob asked me, I asked her:
“How does it feel?”
She ignored me and pressed her lips to the sun’s forehead, where the climate is more temperate than I had previously imagined. My dog could hear the approaching trot of green. And while I couldn’t see it, I could definitely smell it. The olfactory division of my face was on high alert. So were my toes.

I asked her again, like Bob asked me:
“How does it feel?”
Her chortle was like ten infants rolling around in the hay. Nutty and creamy. She gave the sun a bear hug. I’m certain it was uncomfortable by the gesture. Persons of astute wisdom can roll blunts quicker than they can tie their cravats. I’ve stuffed my lasagna full of wisdom. Let’s eat.

I added like Bob would have:
“To be on your own. . .”
When she did a headstand on the sun’s belly I was beside myself. What grace? I usually like my cars organic, but Prius will do. My cup-holders are on the roof, my cafĂ© au lait is securely tucked away in the glove box with my semi-automatic rifle. I feel jealous and completely rational.

I reiterated like Bob did:
“With no direction home. . .”
Imagine my demise when I saw her intimately touch the sun’s skin. She’s brash, a rebel, and dangerous. I can’t have her on the force. Hand over the gun and badge. Aww chief! Put the safety on your finger. We don’t want any accidents. Not like last week. She passed the baton to me via the helios star, made millions of years ago to make me colored.

I pleaded like Bob did:
“A complete unknown. . .”
Kiss off. I can’t see the trees for the forest. And they said my detail was blurry. My eyes are only blurry, so suck it. I’m building rapport with the children on my block and I now know why they vandalize Chip Wade’s bushes. I won’t tell you though. Build your own rapport.

I summed it up in a manner that would please Bob:
“Like a rolling stone.”
I’ve taken the liberty of adding peas to the brisket. It gives the meat a country feeling you lack. She rolled her eyes and fell asleep on the center of my universe. I’ve the distinct feeling that she’s not listening. I was going to have a harmonica interlude, but my lips don’t want to work like they used to. Silly slackers.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Evening Wear

I want to wake up in the morning and put you on
In the form of a scarf of fragrance, it won’t matter too much
I only want to put you on.

I want to come home in the evening and slip you off
Off my shoulders or off my neck, it won’t matter too much.
I only want to slip you off.

I want to sleep with you in the black of the night
Draw you to my chin or cover my feet with you
It doesn’t matter too much
I only want to sleep with you.


I came in the dead of winter
under a mound of blankets
just when you were deep enough
my skin crawled under the wool
it contracted my lungs and took
the breath from my throat
you had no problem breathing, I
could smell rum blowing against
my cheeks . . .
and you joined me.

Your Eyes

You used to do that thing with your tongue but stopped when I turned away bashfully. You knew I was never one for extravagance or for public displays of anything. And then you stopped doing that thing you do with your eyes. You know, I would blush and you’d smile? You stopped that an I regretted saying anything at all.

If you want, you can do that tongue thing again.
I miss you.

Lost in a State of Disbelief

I’ve walked around a dead
city in search of what you
claimed love was. You spoke of it in skies, flowers,
laughing children. I believed you and
I committed my days of solace
to a wild goose chase.

Thus far, the love you’ve told tales
about hasn’t jumped out and surprised
me. It’s hidden in a vacuum of a dark
alley inside a trash can or under my
sneaker, I don’t know, but I’m keeping
my eyes peeled.

I asked for directions and I
got the run around. This love
is as allusive as the moon
on this black night
So thanks for nothing
I’m driving out of this one
horse town
In search of something more tangible

Know it all

I could have told you, a long time ago, I knew all there was to know about desire. Mine own hands have made maps mimicking most men's misogynistic desires. I’ve beat them to the punch and I’ll not be ashamed to remind them and you. Does it seem doggedly disconcerting and damning to know you’ll require my permission upon entering? You must think me as wicked as my old mother Eve. But I tempt you not! I only warn you: I know all there is about desire.

Flesh of my Flesh

This hips wasn’t made to carry a baby
nor this sack of groceries.
This hip was meant to shimmy into a little black number.

This back wasn’t made to carry my brother’s weight
nor hunched over a day’s labor.
This back was meant to arch upward like a crescent moon beneath your hands.

This mouth wasn’t made to scream in anger
nor chew my gum in annoyance.
This mouth was meant to kiss the dark stubble along your jaw.

This heart wasn’t made to bear loss
nor carry melancholy or His cross.
This heart was meant to hold you absolutely close and very near.

The People on the Bus. . .

In the quiet, she only has the bus
driver and ‘ol Baba O’Reilly to
keep her company. Both, she’s
terribly dependent on. In the
reflection of the windows she
sees herself [out of the corner
of her eye] scrawling out life in
a tatter edged notebook. To no
one in particular, maybe Baba,
she smiles in the florescent light.
It’s her stop.

Dashed on/against the Rocks

I’m about as two sheets as I can get.
The pen in my hand shakes as I write this for you.
Never again do I want to be this high.
Never again do I want to feel this low.
This is the beginning of a terrible and dependent relationship.
I think I’m going to throw up.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


The name of your love is "me."
The curve of your love's hip, it belongs to "me."
The way your love's back arches beneath you is characteristic of something "I" would do.
The coy smile your love's lips make; those are really "my" lips.
The way your love's presences stops your world, makes you gasp for breath, and plead with God to spare your life for another day in order to be in her ethereal light. . .Those were all brought on by none other than "myself."
Does this suprise you?
Does this excite you?
"I" knew it would.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Flavor Shots to the Gut

The smell of fake chocolate violates my brain
It didn’t ask whether or not to enter my nose.

It’s pal, fake vanilla, is a bully too.
Brash and unapologetic, it reminds me
This is a school yard and I am prey

I leave the coffee house before fake mint,
Fake hazelnut, and non-dairy creamer make
an appearance.

I’m thirsty.

Communal Wait

The people that wait with you
are your long lost siblings
you wait under the same starry night
on the one most dependable force god
can offer you: the bus.
Your brothers shuffle their feet
and your sisters sigh
And you all listen to the crow’s caw
As the bus downtown runs late
You guys haven’t got much time.


I’ve walked the street that shines an iridescent light.
On shoes that have holes, in a dress that is faded.
My companion is the niggling thought in the back of my
mind. It tells me the moon is low enough to change my
Tide. that’s comfort on a grey pavement


The girl that sits on the boy’s lap at the bus stop knows not what she does to him as she bumps and jerks and plays she isn’t aware of his desire or the power that grows in his fist or between his legs she grins and shouts at her friends that pass by showing them the new toy she’s acquired because that’s what he is he’s fun he’s playful and he’s harmless he sits beneath her docile and biding his time until the day comes when she’ll “owe” him a “favor” and like the Reaper he’ll come to collect citing his previous patience his funniness his playfulness his harmlessness the girl that sits on the boy’s lap knows not what must be paid in full poor girl with every bump jerk play she is being taken for a

It’s time to go home. . .

It’s cold and late and you’re drunk
You’ve insisted on taking me home
Although I’ve helped you down a dark
sidewalk. You smell like booze, cigarettes,
and lost dreams.
“Loser. It smells like a Man.”
Your eyes are half lidded your hand
has copped its complimentary feel.
It’s time to go home

Cry on

The snot nosed child that’s crying behind me doesn’t know pain quite like his mother does. With his six or seven siblings seated around him, he’s got no inkling as to what life’s got in store for him. Or maybe he does.

Is he aware that his mother’s food stamps are running low?
That the rent has yet to be paid?
School clothes will have to be borrowed?
Mother will have to haggle his father for support?

Maybe the snot nosed child that’s crying behind me knows all too well what the fates have thrust upon him and his six or seven sibling. It seems the whole lot should have sniffles, including Mama. But he takes it upon himself to cry for them all.
What a responsible young martyr.


We’ve hit this bridge at ninety miles per hour.
Randomness is the best medicine for shock.
My air bag is deflating too fast.
I’m not driving with you again. WE’RE not
Going to try this anymore. I’m out of gas,
You’re low on anti-freeze.
We’ve hit this bridge at ninety miles per hour.
Maybe my randomness will save us both.

Monday, November 12, 2007

White Knight

She's in no need of saving.
If you were capable of it, it's far too late now.
It angers her that you've ridden into town in tarnished armor, thrusting
a wooden sword and atop of a flea bitten nag.
Your face guard is slipping.
It's a waste of her time, you know.
If only you could have suited up years ago.
She suspects you're here out of guilt and not because of your honor-bound
I think she might be right.

sometimes i feel (melon)choly

This rain is getting me down. I walk carefully under the trees. I avoid puddles like lepers. I roll my eyes at squirrels that chatter at the sidewalk's edge. This rain is getting me down.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

you can. . .

shove it.


I am not man or woman, i am the salt of the earth.
I am common.
From the tattered strings of my sneakers to the rough edges of my jeans.
I am common.
The sun shines on my hands the same as the person beside me.
I am common.
The wind whips my hair in it's restless way the same as it does my neighbor.
I am common.
My worries are like ladybugs in a field, small and only brilliant under close scrutiny.
I am common.
My smile is the light of my life not anyone else's.
I am common.
I am the cog that turns, the oil, the labor, and stress that keep a machine rolling.
I am common.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007


I woman drops her reciept and the wind pulls it away from her like a taunting four year old. She trots and then canters whilst keeping composure. After scolding the offending force, she stomps the piece of paper. As if nipping things in the bud. She looks around at the rest of the world for validation. She handled the wind.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


I steal candy bars that don't fill me up.
I love a man who doesn't fill me up.
I drink from a glass that won't fill me up.
I slave for a craft that I cannot fill up.

Thursday, November 1, 2007


An old woman's bones creak as she climbs aboard a city bus.
She sits in the front, right behind the driver with purse on lap.
Her sheer headscarf is secured with shiny bobby pins
On her face, giant sunglasses reflecting the world that passes.
We pass the old folk's home and her heart flutters.
She's not there, but she knows people, perhaps friends who
Pass the time away there. Or waste away there.
Like passing a cemetary, she holds her breath and says a hail mary
For those who have "passed."
Her wrinkled hands hold her purse tighter, her back straightens
The fear that falls over her face disappears only a few blocks later
Near main street she smiles and converses with others.
Near north street she forgets all about that niggling worry in the
Back of her mind
It comes back only subtly, when she steps off the bus, her bones
Creak their protest and she knows she's damned close to joining
Those who have "passed."

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


I knew a gypsy woman who was honest enough to tell me that my fly was open. You can't beat that.


I'm floating on a good drunk
just above the equator, i'm waiting
for the right tree to bend it's palm
then i'll slide down the banana and to the
I heard the mud there is just warm enough
to squish my toes and my finger tips in
I'm wallowing in feel goodness all over
from my canopy to my floor

Monday, October 29, 2007

What if?

What if a poem is never read?
Is it really a poem
or is it laying in the forest
next to the fallen tree that
no one heard fall?

I Once Loved a Man

named Hector, who only wanted to make love to me
in the morning.
At night he was tired and I was awake.
In the morning he was awake and I was tired.
When I asked him why he only wanted me in the early dawn,
he laughed.
As if it were obvious.
He told me I was most beautiful in the morning.
I was just born.
My hair in a disarray didn't bother him nor the pillow creases in my face.
Sleeping beauty was roused with a simple kiss,
but it took several scattered along my neck,
a nonabrasive grope to my breast,
and a raspberry blown on my belly.
When i finally open eyes, he told me,
it's as if i were reborn that morning.
It's as if he were the first to meet me
and i him.
It's as if he gave life to me from his rib.
I think of it as beautiful inconvenience.

i cannot promise

that i won't call a man "papa"
in bed.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

I'm Throwing it all Away

And going to find a burger.
I've got my bag in hand, with several books in it
I'm walking the streets, i'm let letting the wind slap me around.
I'm going to eat that burger slowly and read those books
I might find a drink of coffee too.
If i feel so inclined, i might take my time coming back to the world that claims to need me.
I might be late, i might show up on time.
I might ditch the whole thing and get drunk.
I'm throwing it all away and for nothing else but to save my life.
It's not much, but it's all i got.
I haven't planned it past the burger, but i'm ready. . .

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The Art of Keying Cars

Is not beyond you if you have a thirst for vengeance
That cannot be settled with "just holding it in."
God bless those edges that are serrated
And paint that it is as faulty as your temper
"Bitch!" "Bastard!" "Cunt!" "Dick!" are among the
Many things to scrawl across the hood of a Camry
Tires are added flair and suggest arrogance
Stick with cowardice and with seven payments of
19.95 plus shipping and handling, you too. . .
Can learn the Art of keying cars.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

i never liked sharing

I knew the measure of my bitchiness when i was nine
i confronted a blond girl in the hallway of school.
"I used to have a coat just like that," I told her.
I knew exactly what I was doing. She looked
"It had the same fur trim around the hood, the same
magenta buttons, the same silver zipper. Where did
you get it?"
She mumbled something unintelligible and i knew i was a
"It's a nice coat, i remember, cause i had one just like it."
I told my mother about it and saw the disappointment in her eyes.
"I donated that coat, kiddo. You grew out of it, remember?"
It was mine and now it's her's and i let her know it.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

I Was Sweating

when i woke up
i was sick. fatally ill.
i licked the cotton off
my lips and buried my
face in a moutain of
pillow. i finally drowned
in that sweat. it carried
me to the ocean where i
floated the atlantic.
The exotic salts of the sea
washed over me and a
porpoise nudged me with
his nose
water ran through my
nostrils, ears, and throat and
washed me clean.
a shark nibbled at my toe,
found me not to his like and
swam away.
the kelps of underwater abyss
swaddled me tightly in a cocoon.
barnacles attached themselves
to the heels of my feet
weighing me down.
when i reached the bottom
of the ocean floor
i grew gills and joined
my aquatic brethren
we floated and darted together
like pals long lost, long separated.

I tried

I asked the Mexican landscaper if he "hablas" Spanish
because I didn't want to be presumptuous.
"Si," he replied, just like I knew he would.
"Buenos dias," I told him.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

I Am Mine: A heavily copied ode

Simon and Garfunkel claimed to search for America on the New Jersey Turnpike at a time when i was not a thought. When will i come into existence as the kid with chops?
Dylan said there would be a change and so far i've seen a stationary progression. When will i get past the disappointments that sting like joking belly flops?
McCartney and his compadres pretended to be a band on the run. When this desert settle down in my stomach?
Kiedis and his peppers said that they were standing in line waiting on a show. Its keeps playing in the back of my mind. When can't i stop for a second take?

They write these words with such ease
I can't admit that i'm envious of their genius
I so badly to take their melody,
i want to take Vedder's even flow and place it on my tongue
i'll settle for Jagger's brown sugar

Tuesday, October 9, 2007


i don't want to hear about their importance to the world i just know that i despise them fuck spiders and the moms that made them

I took you Out

and smelled you until i sobbed.
it isn't supposed to smell like you anymore.
Where is the statute of limitations?
in the same place where this ignored love lives.
all i want to do is hold you emotionally hostage
with all my bullshit.
My requests are forty grand in unmarked bills
a jet to the keys
and your promise that you'll come down with Stockholm's Syndrome

Monday, October 8, 2007

Turns out

I'm not all that into potato chips like i thought i was.
I actually enjoys most things tortilla.
This discovery makes me wish i didn't waste my time.
I'll bet you wish the same, don't you?
I hope this has no ill effects on our un-relationship.
The fact that potato chips no long "do it" for me
shouldn't bring a cloud of uneasiness over our good time

The Poem of a Lonely Man

Is a case of voyeurism gone terribly awry
I've watched him take her in with glances;
claiming her in the name of [name here]
the tiny mole on her neck not with a flag
but with his lips. . .
his eyes have a pathetic longing not unlike
a dog's. that tongue is similar as well
he's this close [forefinger and thumb quite close]
to doing something rash:
rape with words
"you remind me of my mother. i want to kiss
I'm violated just by watching him.
pressing gifts of dead flowers
trips to the park
these are all the things riddling his mind
when he looks at her.
I want to give him one good slap and pull

Thursday, October 4, 2007

those who had a hand in my conception

those who had a hand in my conception, i forgive you.
you had no idea what you were about but you forged
ahead with the pretenses of being experience.
although some of you couldn't hack the journey, it proved
too difficult, the remainder had enough gumption to bull
shit to the best of their ability. i see that same ability in
myself and i am thankful for that small fortification.
i look back and see how far you've come and how far
i must go to become involved in someone else's conception.
i'm prepared to do what must be done to shape another's
psyche. i don't mind that i've as much experience as those
before me when they started. the skill to bull shit is ready
at my disposal.
so truly, those who had a hand in my conception. . .
i forgive you

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

it occurred to me. . .

That i'm getting older and not younger.
billy idol is sounding much older too.
he's too old for white weddings.
i'm too old for billy idol.
This is bullshit.
for real.

Monday, October 1, 2007

that never happens

can you pass me a cigarette?
I can't, I'm out.
you're out? well what are we supposed to do?
I hate it when you answer my questions with questions.
That sounds fuckin' cliche. I hate it when people use that phrase.
Well what else am i supposed to call it? fucking annoying?
Look us, we're talking.
I guess we are.

You wanna talk about it?
About what?
Why you don't have a cigarette.
I usually have them, you know that. tonight, i'm out.
You're usually good about having them.
What do you want me to say about it?
I don't know. What do you want to say about it?
Are you doing the same fucking thing you accused me of doing? That whole question thing?
It's all right.


He came from behind me that evening, wrapping his arms around my waist. His touch surprised me. Our faces were close, I could feel his breath against my ear; his chest against my back.

"Hi," I said with a shaky laugh.

"Is that what you would say to your attacker?"

I wanted to tell him that his arms didn't feel like an attackers. I glanced in the mirrors of the dojo studio. The rest of the students were stretching and warming up. I knew we were attracting their glances.

"I don't see you making any moves."

I passed through all the steps that would disable my attacker without really thinking about them. I mocked stepping on his foot, shifting my hips to hit his groin with my fist and then twisting around to hit the side of his head with my elbow.

"Not bad."

"Thanks," I said and immediately blushed as he removed his arms. I ran my fingers through my bangs and tucked them in my ponytail. "I tried to practice my stuff but no one in my family wants to attack me." I laughed. "I think they're afraid."

He smiled and put his hands on his hips. "Not even your boyfriend? Is he afraid too?"

"I don't have a boyfriend," I told him. I said it as cooly as I could, but it came out in a shaky voice.

He nodded in obvious approval. I saw it, could anyone else? I didn't bother to let my gaze drift to the mirrors that surrounded the dojo. "Let me know when I can help," he commented. "It's been awhile since i've gone through the green belt attacks. . . but I'm sure it's all there."

I saw how he set himself up for a compliment. For some reason, I helped him along and finished it for him. I smiled. "Well of course it's been awhile, you're a black belt."

"Third degree," he corrected.

"Third degree," I corrected myself.

dark parking lot

I don't think i noticed his car, or him, the other day the bus passed the parking lot. After i saw him standing beside the car smoking, i wondered how many times i could have seen him before. It was the car i noticed first. i don't know a thing about cars, but i knew this one rather intimately. It was classy, foreign, black and shiny. It shined like the driver's life depended on it. It also seemed reasonable that Satan could have been that driver. With a car that sharp, he could have made house calls.

But the driver was not Satan, he was a white man in his forties, balding at the back of his crown, and wore a office man's uniform. The plume of smoke that came from his cigarrette was the second thing i noticed. I remembered its smell instantly. As if we were together again, hot and sweaty, him correcting my technique, me mumbling my apologies.

i saw his face for the briefest of moments and looked away in embarrassment. What did i have to be embarrassed about? When i looked back, he got in his shiny car. The bus got further away. i turned in my seat to look behind me. His car was gone. As always, i was left frustrated.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Portrait: Jazzy Old Man

He’s really creepy but I want to take him home
Every time we meet, he greets me with a little dance
The kind of dance that reminds us that he’s not all that old
I wait for him to pull coins out of my ear but he just slaps my fanny
Jesus . . . he’s really creepy
Sometimes he tells me how music was and how it turned out to be
Back in the day jazz was boss
And it didn’t cost you nothin’ to say hello to someone on the street
When he’s done, he’ll shuffle away
When he shuffles away, I miss him
When I miss him, I await his next creepy return
The next little dance and the next slap on the my ass
Damn jazzy old man


I snatched up a couple dozen forks from the cafeteria today. I was once again the girl from second grade saving sandwich bags. I’ve always had a thing with saving the pair of bottom of the deck. It’s doubled the weight of bag over the years. This need to horde and I make a demented duo. It makes me twice the afraid child I used to be.

25 cents

I apologize for not meeting your gaze when we crossed paths on the road to Shambala. I was busy looking for a quarter. You see, I only had 25 cents to buy a 50 cent ice cream sandwich. I thought my luck would satisfy me with a quarter in the road. I’m sorry I missed you, but ice cream beckoned me and I only had 25 cents.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Almost Late

I almost missed the bus today

There were some ducks that needed saving

I was locking my door, on my way

and six or seven birds waddled up to me

I sighed. they looked hungry.

I unlocked my door and shut it behind me

I rifled the cabinets for old bread,

I tore it up and threw it at them

they seemed happier with a little

split top wheat bread doing down their gullets

I felt happier for them.

I caught the bus just in time.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Something's broken

So i went to the student health area on my campus and told them about an ankle i sprained in April. That's about six months ago. It's still giving me problems, i didn't go to the doctor because i don't want to pay people to tell me i should just "walk it off." I tell the nurse how long it had been since my injury. She gives me this look that suggests that i'm stupid. And i do feel ashamed to have to tell her the truth. I want to say that i did this stupid thing a week ago.

"what were you doing?" she asks.

"i was rollerblading."

she smiles and shakes her head. She knows i know what she's going to say about that. So she lets it slide. She asks me what my symptoms. I tell her:

"whenever i've had a long day of walking, it hurts. By the end of the day, it's usually swollen."

She asks me why i'm just now coming to the doctor. I don't have a decent answer. Sometimes i can put stuff off for so long, in the hopes that they just get better on their own. I tell her something to that effect. she shakes her head again.

Eventually, that day, i got x-rays and that was kinda fun.

When i get the call back to in and review those x-rays, i'm almost sure that it's good news. "With a few more months, of just walking, your ankles is going to heal itself quite nicely."

That's not what i got, i find out that i actually fractured it. This was told to me by a bemused doctor who examines my x-rays with a furrow in her brow. "You're going to want to go to an orthopedic surgeon." What!

And this is six months ago! i've been walking around on a fracture for half a year and i'm still calling it a sprain. i think i'm still going to call it a sprain. i just don't believe my luck. I peeved about the possibility of surgery, but somewhat relieved that this problem has a name. It's called a "Fracture of the Distal Fibula."

whatever, it's still a sprain to me.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Hold the Mayo

Sitting in the vestibule of Wal-Mart, i heard a man drop a jar of mayonnaise. "Shit!" he exploded. Savage was his oath. I looked away but looked back as he left. Cracked was his jar. People avoided stepping on the white dressing as they passed, without really looking. Nimble were their steps. It's hit or miss, i usually say. This time, the mayo hit the ground. Ironic was my reaction.

C.L. Halliburton

Monday, September 17, 2007

Old School

Have you ever heard Mozart?
I don’t like Mozart
Have you ever heard Mozart?
He’s a smart man, that Mozart.

We don’t listen to people like Mozart
Say who?
Say the kids
Kids don’t know Mozart?
Maybe, maybe not, but they don’t listen

Who do you like?
Pussycat Dolls.
Good Lord, who’s that? They make good music?
It’s not Mozart
I guess not

Have you ever heard Beethoven?
I don’t like Beethoven.

C.L. Halliburton


As a young man
I sacrificed my shoes
Upon an alter made
Of green felt for
A queen demi-goddess
Who claimed to rule
Our hearts. I’d give
My hands to her
If I had something
Else to hold my
Cards. So I didn't

C.L. Halliburton

Us and Them: Or Downtown Bloomington and Uptown Normal

All that separates us and them, is a package of tater-babies and 29¢ burritos
Jogging on nicely paved sidewalks and dog walking
El Caminos and 1987 Nissans
Walgreens with full parking lots across the street from Applebees
Hanging out on stoops and chewing the fat at the chicken joint
Subdivisions with Mexican groomed lawns and garages full of Sears tools
“First of the Month” folks and “Comin’ into town from the farm” folks
A slightly favored, a much cleaner Wal-Mart
Runny nosed Mullato bastards and coughing old ladies
Coach sunglasses and megaton “lady” Hummers to carry children and groceries
Speakers far too big and far too loud for gentry comfort
Girl scouts who still hump the pavement to make a sale
Beauty supply stores owned and run by quiet Koreans
Bagboys take sacks to the car and people pass gratuity
Drive thru liquor and cigarette shops
The neighborhood watch composed of a “neighborhood elected council”
Televisions that mysteriously fall off the backs of trucks
Cops immediately on the scene for a quarrel over hedge trimming
Oh god--- the difference between them and us is too great to mend
One of us will beg to ignore the other
The other will beg to be seen
But because of the great machine. . .
We’ll continue being “us” and “them”
One side on the illustrious MLK Blvd.
The other with it’s crowded Cracker Barrel

C.L. Halliburton

Watch it! There's a Triolet in Your Silhouette

Oh, the birds did fly
The did so with flair
Up, they flitted across the sky
Oh, the birds did fly
Above the autumn trees that were dry
They darted between clouds with dare
Oh the birds did fly
They did so with flair

Water nymphs dive and play
In water so blue and clear
They glide deeper than the sun shines its ray
Water nymphs dive and play
Tricks and shenanigans during the day
And even at night, when fisherman leaves the pier
Water nymphs dive and play
In water so blue and clear

C.L. Halliburton

Portrait: Leather Captain

He was Ahab in a leather jacket
Shit kicking boots and silver earring
His lofty stature; like an aging oak
This comely gent did not wish to dally

He waited to use the copy machine
But there was a line to stand behind
“Sir, there’s another copy machine to use,”
I said, in awe, as I stared up at him

He smiled an nodded acknowledgment
In a deep rumbled voice, he said, “Thank you.”
My face turned red for a man twice my age
He walked to the machine with a purpose

Assuredly, his copies were produced
I watched him leave without preamble.

My Last Lover

My last lover will close my eyes tonight
My shallowest breaths will arrive and leave
He will come to my bedside, amidst the candle light

I won’t see his face, but his presence I will not fight
As he runs his icy fingers down my neck I believe
That my last lover will close my eyes tonight

His cold kisses will no longer be enough to excite
His pity will not arouse me from my final reprieve
But he will come to my bedside, amidst the candle light

My consciousness is about to take flight
The pallor of my skin is too noticeable to deceive
My last lover, who will close my eyes tonight

I barely notice how my chest grows tight
Soon enough, it will be over and I will not cleave
To he, who will come to my bedside, amidst the candle light

I’m not surprised by how he holds me so right
But when I am gone, I know he will not grieve
My last lover came to close my eyes tonight
He came to my bedside, amidst the candle light.

C.L. Halliburton

World's Oldest Dance

She didn’t know she’d break her shoe
while dancing the Cuban Boogalu.
Nor did he know how many martinis it took
to give him that loose intoxicated look.

I held her waist with innocent sweaty hands
I watched, on the verge of staring, the heart within my chest did dance.
As the music played, the rocking of her body undulated slower
My sweaty hands moved lower.

You don’t know a person until you’ve seen them dance
You’ve seen them at their freest, they’ve given you that chance
You’ve seen the movement that is their breath, their life,
The pounding that is their heart, their work and their strife.

The Samba is on, their faces are flushed
After a few stumbles, he doesn’t feel quite as rushed.
It will take a powerful wave to douse
this powerful fire they’ve stoked and aroused.

He smiled when I slipped my broken heels off my feet
He loosened his collar and popped another olive between his teeth.
He’s nervous as hell, he’s had far too much to drink
But I’m going to lead around by his necktie, barefooted, before he knows to blink.

You don’t know a person until you’ve seen their truest grace
Until you’ve seen that sheen of sweat on their face.
You know not your lover until you seen his smile during his final throes
His hips, his hands, his rhythm: it’s these things only you should know.

C.L. Halliburton

Tankas Keep Truckin'

“Planetary Alignment”

Sending messages
on winged heels to doom or
salvation at the
risk of mortal wound
such responsibility

Angered beyond kiss
Fiery hammer, shield and sword
Burning lust and dare
Alight his eyes with vengeance
An impatient one to fight

Brought forth from the foam
From the seed of her father
With delight she takes
Love from poor souls giving none
Dreamers lovers pray for glimpse

A mighty father
Such a thunderous temper
Quelled with lightening
Strength to devour all that’s
loved and created by him

Regent of all seas
From eels of forked tongues to
horses with curled tails
waves of tranquility rush
forth into whirlpools of deep

Underneath everything
Below the depths of hellfire
To the ghosts of nothings
Blinded with pennies to pass
This ferryman will not wait.


Cinquains are sooo shiny

“Common Senses”

Sound note
Fall in my ears
Curtailing small bones past
The spanning drum stretched to vibrate

Are the colors
Saffron, curry, turquoise
I can see them with my eyes closed

On my tongue’s tip
This ambrosial bliss
a sweet warmth spreads throughout my mouth
Bursts forth

And knowing are
Blurred with a fine sprawled line
Intuition moves the soul with

Is the scented
Emotion of rage and
Love, seething between the cracks it
Bursts forth

C.L. Halliburton

Haiku it, fool!


An isolation junk
subway jostles these people
This city is mine

Cool rolling hills wake
In the misty mornings still
With no sign of sun

Wait in crowded markets
Fresh dates for sale, lamps to rub
Old carpets to ride. . .

Drumming of the soul
Stirs the feathers of eagles
Peyote smoke flies

Ancestor’s first home
From Sahara to Cape Hope
We will be there soon

Old red dynasty
Bamboo reeds float down Yangtze
paddies soak my feet

C.L. Halliburton