29 March 2011

Cartoon Me


Cartoon me
Doesn’t want to know about the brown nits
Nestled in his daughter’s classmates’ hair.
Cartoon me
Doesn’t care
If the bills come printed on pink paper.

He wants to air guitar
And write poems about being drunk and stupid.
Cartoon me
Wants to be drunk and stupid.

Cartoon me
Gets in the car and drives.
He hitches a ride home
Cause, who the hell needs gas money?
He forgot to take the garbage out,
So he put it in someone else’s trash can.

Cartoon me
Really     doesn’t     want     to     hear     it.

Cartoon me is a goddamn nuisance.
Can I borrow some tools from your shed?

Cartoon me
Is clawing at the inside of the wooden box lid
With overgrown, bent back fingernails.
I shovel the last scoop of earth and think-
“There can’t be  much more air in that crate.”


28 March 2011

Family Night

We had our share of Monopoly matches,
The Game of Life.
And we did love our cards.
Red and blue decks of Bicycle playing cards
With patterns that belong more on a book of spells
Than a deck of cards.

We also tried our damnedest
To speak with the dead.
I thought your dad was a medium
Like mine.

I assumed you turned off the lights
In the darkest part of a summer night
And clasped hands
Mother to sister to sister to brother to brother
Listening for a change in father’s voice,
Watching for the candle light to suddenly disappear,
Feeling for the tell-tale shiver
Of spectral contact.

You haven’t channeled the dead
After dinner?
You never wondered
Which spirit slid the felted planchette
To Yes or No.
We’d ask,
“Is that you?”
We’d be happy when he’d answer
Yes
Or spell his name.
But any ghost is a good ghost
On the night you choose
Séance over spades.

I just figured
That you thought so, too.


Talk about rough! I need a steel file to smooth the edges on this poem. Hey, that gives me an idea. But I have to thank Lolamouse for giving me (inadvertently) the idea for this poem. Her The Ouija Board got me thinking of the fun we had trying to conjure up spirits.

24 March 2011

Careful What You Say

A punch is a punch.A knife will cut.
But every breathe is a bullet
Or a kiss.



Unfinished scribble-thought.

22 March 2011

I Want a Poem

I want a poem that's a picture.
An artifact,
A piece of concrete and chrome,
Hard as a bullet.
I want it to burn my chest
Like a tattoo needle.

I want it to start a fight
And come at me with a broken bottle.
I want it to be a sucker punch
Like
What the hell!
I want it to smell like a drunk cigar.

I want a poem
That goes down like a mouthful of bleach.
I want it to lay me out
Like a flagrant foul.
I want it to be a night in the county lockup
With dudes I don't want to know.

I want a poem that opens your door
Without knocking
And drinks your last beer.
I want a poem
That doesn't care
How smart you are.

I want a poem
That just might go off
Like old munitions
Or a firecracker
In your hand.
I just want a poem.

I think I'll keep working on this one. I'd like it to be a keeper.

20 March 2011

Self Medicate

Every word is release.
Each sound and every single syllable is a therapeutic pill.
The punctuation is an anti-anxiety.
Study the screen like an X-Ray,
Plotting the next treatment.

Metered I-V
Drip, drips
Into the veins.
Heart beats each word
Out to a fingertip.

Keys tap, tap in rhythm.
Stanzas of diagnoses
Scroll down the page,
Changing and changing and changing.
Every poem is a prescription.

Then why the hell don't I write more often?