going to the movies
what you don’t understand is
because it’s not practical, we don’t praise
phoenixes. when the ceiling caves in, we don’t
come back new. the water stays dirty.
the children go without a father. our turkeys
bring entire countries to the table.
we praise canaries because of the moments before
we stop breathing where we know
we have something to stop breathing with.
it’s not the hookers, but what they are capable of
that fascinates me. i misheard the entire history
of the world over two cans and string with you
when we were still young
yesterday afternoon, and the carnival felt more orange
than dirt and i’d not yet pissed myself on the ferris wheel.
i thought love and all this could save us
because the public school system let me down.
i fell as hard as sand bags fall through clouds
falling through atmosphere, falling through the pollution
above our town, that love it or hate it, is ours.
i couldn’t afford the sphinx you wanted.
i built a castle from the dripping lightning
at the edge of my porch where flowers open and jockey
for the rain that falls from the opening in the sky
where we rewrite our pasts.
i couldn’t afford the ghosts to haunt it, so i hung
my own. notice how close a changed man
and a hanged man are to each other?
notice how no matter how small i make my fist
there are holes that won’t fit it, like the yellow school bus
spinning on ice, and we the aftermath. we the town
that didn’t get to sink with the bus
and must now learn to add and subtract.
the jays were out
for blood today.
in my stomach
i’ve hidden my god.
making things from
the wrong sort of lakes
the kids with camera
phones want to be
loved too. entire countries
could have been saved
if someone would have said
a wooden horse is a terrible idea.
lets turn south instead.
the clouds make us
look local beneath them.
the sky is manchurian
this will only mean something
to two people in the entire world.
the rest of you will be left guessing.
it was still not too late,
before it was.
it wasn’t until long after
worms ate his insides
that anyone associated Ponce de León
with Florida. no one whispered
the word atlantis, the city
cringing beneath a cringing city,
except the kids that were lost
that stayed lost, mostly unaware
of the context for loss.
the cool kids got cooler
to their friends. the sad kids
grew into trees,
and some fell harder than others.
i had hoped for something
that takes getting used to.
the person in the mirror
takes too much.
everything else is determined
by the jaws of life.
i’ve been living on an algorithm
and black coffee for years.
nostalgia is a bad idea
and dim. time does not move
gracefully. mercy as it was
recently explained to me
makes the person giving it
seem like a real ass,
otherwise it would
be compassion. had i known
the difference, all the lives
i could have saved.
Space is Place
space is the thing
we put things into
before we put them there.
this works with hearts,
footballs and laser beams too.
there is a special flock
of seagulls from a movie
we loved together,
and our distance is a space too.
moses in the desert,
talking to himself
in front of an innocent
that’s a space. i quit
writing sonnets two years ago.
they would not raise the dead.
they would not raise flags
for people to gather. no one
gathered when i explained
no one gets sad when they are
depressed. sadness comes
from somewhere. i wake
like this every morning,
for no reason. it was never you
no matter what i said.
it was the sea green
blue i was lost in.
everything green blue.
i greened blue in the green blue
until i was the green in the blue.
there is no sense of end.
this space is not a boat
without wind nor the distance
between a voice
on one side
of a phone from another voice.
this is not a how could he,
this is the eventual letting go.
we are all dying,
i just have a better imagination than you.
i can see myself expiring like milk.
most days that is still better
than the alternative. the honeysuckle
and lilac were made up,
even when they weren’t made up.
so, astronauts never walked on the moon.
who really gives a shit?
everyone needs a hollywood basement
to pretend in, every now and then.