Los Angeles Air Withered / Me

I blamed the smog first
for chronic bronchitis,
then for each of my failures
breaking into Hollywood.

My last time
in the Trader Joe’s
parking lot, BMWs
and convertibles.

I wore smudged sunglasses,
saw pigeons gather
before the same small gods
I wanted to become.


(originally published in Neologism Poetry Journal, Winter 2018)

Five-Star Hotel

Starlight is not equal in the petroleum sky.
Homes know the ocean
but not their owners– cliff’s edge.

Striated fireworks stake and fall,
hurriedly carted by fragile marbles.

Oil salts the earth to lust–
a red akin to blood
and romance seen in films,
romanticism violently envisioned
and burrowed for the claw
of the excavator, millionaire muck
gushed from leaking faucets.
The piping is consistent:
the toilets flush twice– to be sure.

These are where the fingerprints mingle
to create their own pulse– voyeur beats.

So fill your tank with Grey Goose.
Drink Utopia first. There is no price
for luxury but the cost in lost days–
my treat.


(originally published in altered form in Little River – Issue #4)