Murakami

I wait
for the return
of my beloved

is that you
on the
phone?

I lean
against
white wall

silence
fills the well
I’ll drown in

 

(originally published in Pif Magazine, Spring 2019)

The Gym

Planned to hit the gym after work
to flex these treadmills of atrophied muscles,
but decided to quit my job and drink instead–
first work-free morning’s sunlight’s sharpness
in my skull. From this decision, I have hurt
my liver once, my heart twice from lack
of exercise, ate Five Guys for lunch then
missed the gym again. If we are all not
getting our week’s workouts in running
from the shadow of time, embrace it.

(originally published in Phenomenal Literature, Spring 2019)

Oklahoma

In these plains I have been
tornado chaos the storm swirling
from shot glass. Unpredictable
system of bankruptcies this
unknowable thing can become
in a field touching down. Sky
sirens. Muck dust. Lightning
flicks a weary finger– my hand
on your spine my funnel
into sky a violin sirensong,
a tenuous tremolo.

 

(originally published in Poetry Pacific, Spring 2020)

Dinosaur

I dug myself a crater
upon which to climb
out of your wedding

you said extinction
means agreeing
to not be seen

& I am not about
removing myself
from the premises
of Earth

but here are the pearly
gates & golden steps
one can walk & walk

up into clouds
of thunderbolts
skipping time

like stones upon
the black surface
of water let’s say

to next year
when I have forgotten
the empty pool

& blueberries
have fallen out
of my mouth

& bounced off
a stone wall
I could climb

to jump from

 

(originally published in LEVITATE, Spring 2019)

Flood

The longer I lived in my car
on the road aimless the more I
wanted to lose myself. Everywhere
was a mirror & the only way to go
was into the murk of past &
uncertainty of tomorrow. It was like
pedaling the gas for days in the mud.
Tires spinning, going nowhere.
The same me to greet at each
destination: The Grand Canyon.
Austin. Keystone Lake
in Oklahoma had drowned itself
in a Paul Klee watercolor. I
wanted its depths as my own.
The pole in the lake.
The pole in the trees.
My eyes in the lake.
My eyes in the sky.

 

(originally published in Plum Tree Tavern, Spring 2019)

D.C.

Weird seeing how we’ve changed. In sticky
bars we were tornadoes swirling into drunk
arms. After a certain date we spake change

living in the new blotted heart of darkness.
The horizon blessed us but looked to fade
fast. I write poems & you write legislature.

Do better, you tell me, still, though it is
your will. You walk from the shore of the
bleeding Atlantic to break the binding quill

of former centuries. There is no place for
hate here
. Waves of black ink roiling in
for the storm. A comfort, this tornado.

(originally published in The Literary Nest, Spring 2019)

Fog Machine

I am good at drinking the fog
machine shooting stars past
sugar-rings of Saturn.
Entering small atmosphere
of haze and collision. A burn
to swallow smiling.
Everything became
out of body. Some bubbles
pop soon after floating
from the wand but I rode this
for years. The axis of my own
journey seems fleeting. And
the circular magnet of time pulls
me now like desire to step into
a cosmic pool and ride the
ripples I make to its end.

 

(originally published in Free Library of the Internet Void, Winter 2019)

Father Monster

to keep her away from him
this elephantine responsibility
before you is quartz dressed
in granite stripped from volcano
               & I am scared you will try
to kill yourself again if you
don’t stay stone / o voyager
inside this thick sentence / time
spent without your child this seed
in a core / gnawed on
unpitted olives & broken
teeth being the easiest
part of the process
how your judge won’t
listen / how your judge takes
his gavel / slams against
a desk of air & its reaction
is a howling / sound
everyone else can hear

(originally published in Neologism Poetry Journal, Winter 2019)

Square Cafe

pancakes we talk heavy locomotive engine
steam billows out this whale blowhole this
top of mind wisp say something anything
wrong always sugar sweet the stacks
I want to speak doesn’t connect you eat
a hole through final pancake as to
puncture the flour we had bloomed
over the last year and half eternity
we could lose in the vast distance
across the table cerulean walls
surround us in new distance
enclosed and suffocated open
air a quiet din to gorge last
bites by window sunlight
your blue marble eyes I
can’t meet halfway
mumbling

 

(originally published in 24hr Neon Mag, Winter 2019)