Nurse Me Impermeable

Float me a platter of ampules
in place of breakfast. 

						Please do
brush the grime from your feet
ahead of time:
					the old carpet is
starting to struggle under the
dark of permanent wear from
the hallway to the bed,
							since
we set this same metronome
each morning.

					My covers are
crusted to my dewlaps,
							and I
could use a cool shot from your
cocktail tray—
					it might muffle
the bleat and peal of my soured
conscience—
					to chip me loose
from my still December puddle.

I will be blown-in insulated by
cottony palliatives;
						the oculus
stalk craned to focus into the
cavernous geode of colored blips
which compose habitats in my
shifting imaginings.

						"I want to
be a real boy,"
					I say in the quiet
of my soundproofed skull,
								the
deadened place where no jeer
nor laughter of the mob can
penetrate—
				those crowds of we
who mock the dying man for
his dying,
				we who milk stimulus
through pert voyeurism at the sad
throes of human wretchedness.

No,
		with a favorable mixture
of your silvered anesthetics I'll
log-roll from my sleep,
							out of
my dermis,
				and into a pasture
thronged by formerly unhappy
icons who have attained high
enlightenment by synergistic
mood enhancers.

						Can I now eat
my first meal from within the com-
forting capsule of my caterpillar
suit,
		where I will outmaneuver
all the insufferable raindrops?


I generally weep in foul weather.

Laundering the Beach

I pull apart a contracture in the snarl of my drab cargo
shorts; the washing machine’s fat bottomed steel colander
anticipates—a reverse doughnut hole array of shark finned
water paddles designed to beat the stale from the mesh

of old garments. Veldt grass Velcro is twined like a jungle
eyebrow to the affixing threads of smooth UFO buttons
which moon over fabric plains and stitched superhighways
in search of experimental life signs. My humid thighs had

knocked around like clappers in cloth bells along the soft
crust of the Atlantic, where a blue crab lofted its pincers
in a brace against the infinite conflagration of surf:  broad
panoplies of tongues which lick away each child’s sandcastle.

Tight daubs of bathing suited bodies upright in loose furrows—
soft synonyms to my unaided eyes; mislaid voices are hues in
a mixing bucket, amalgams in a memory of threads that fray
beneath the blue of detergent, erased from time after the cycle

concludes.

 


I’ve been away for a time. Still writing, still dreaming, just not posting. I keep up with things in the Reader and occasionally “like” some posts. I’m not gone. I’m quite here, should you be interested.

Drones Don’t Need Space Suits

Wearing a 37-inch television crown, I
stand proximal enough for the static

thrum of its

pull-away kiss

to erect strands

across half my dome’s oblong equator.
Army men slither on folded chicken

wing elbows

under spiral

brambles of

spooled wire, past the glob of lime
discoloration that creeps through

the bottom-

left corner of

our upstairs

cathode ray tube. I want to germinate
a space shuttle jumpsuit—unravel the

arts of stick,

rudder, and

astrophysics;

but some ships sparkled and burst like
backyard bottle rockets, and the vast-

ness of space

proffered no

short-term

gains, so I wrapped the universe in
packaging tape and rifled it down the

open end of

the pillowcase

I howl into at

night before I

drag myself

to dreaming.

Regular, Full-Body Fumigations Prevent Nesting Roaches, Panic, and Soul Spots

A shoehorn soap peel sits on the tiled ledge to the
porthole in my tub-shower—glass louvers gut-high

in the wall, so the earth may watch me scouring—
with upturned fins like a mid-stroke manta ray I

twirl and scuff to coax absolving lather (because all
mothers say hygiene heals a gape of wounds), and

I enjoy the soothe of vapor while my nerves are
whipped into a froth and the light separates to

striped piano keys, when for the sixth time today
I’m convinced death’s viscous glaze is plastering

me over; perhaps a salving byproduct is the warm
expurgation of my guilt-stuffed lump of belly fat—

which jiggles when I contort to baptize unmapped
appendages—but the suds usually make me dry-itch.

Man and Sea (with Dog) Wait out a Thunderstorm

He’s splayed under cover of a rainstorm awning
with a spray-on shirt in green weave like tangled kelp—
serif lettering across his tanned breasts has been
parched into an indistinct dither by the hormonal
swings of a foul-mood sun.

And his dog tap-dances with pointed red fox ears
under the gas station windows—tip-tap-
tapping with unclipped claws that mime the practiced knocks of
patent leather stage shoes—the yellow feather of its tail
pursued by a cloud of affection-brown hands:
fluttering wings whose fingers are slivers of washed driftwood,
like what’s under the flakes of peeling blue bow paint on that down-the-road
sailing boat; its overturned hull passes every season in slowness
near the broad, relaxed shoulder of the coast, as it casts
and drags in the sighing vacuums between
stuck RVs that aim themselves like sunbathing snow bears,
angling for a first-time roast of bronze.

The tap shoe pup hits marks to a rolling drum like bullets from God
for the chuckling man who wears the sea on his back; legs figure-eight the piles of
every owned thing stuffed into the paunches of
three plastic grocery bags.

Slanting forms eye the Mesmer roll of numbers clicking;
thread long rubber tubes into the empty bladders of their automobiles—
ears plugged against the music.

Crossroads Memory

Three standing crosses, staggered,
reinforce the salt white scrimmage line of cement curb.

Necks draped in floral strings—
guests in Hawaiian orchid leis attend a beach-side luau.

Rome had famous crucifixions;
my mind reechoes the long death wails of Pict and Gaul.

A traffic light dangles on a cable,
its glossed new body is trimmed in thin reflector yellow—

—no Lazarine resurrection.

full to-go bag

vapors crest, puffing in beaded continents across the wide interior panes
stones of rice grains succumb, mollifying under surges of goading steam

a line of bodies begins between the railings
my sneakers hold their place in the queue

barber pole décor—tabled booths are flecked by gluts of surface crumbs
enameled particle boards bent in gentle L’s pander to the seated form

a number six, no meat, thanks
two spring rolls; duck sauce

the milky hammock of her forearm wobbles gently with each button press
as her tattooed knuckles deposit hominid warmth onto my pocket change

three bills, five coins returned
yes, I’ll wait over there

four thousand years of calligraphic records scratched into tortoise bones
so two girls in school letters can compare complimentary glass-plated palms

a paper bag, folded at one end
on the counter with grease dapples

the wrinkle of a place mat guides a tour through the Han’s astrological zoo
I’m a zodiac rat, groping with plague whiskers for a spill in fat grain sacks

hands shuffleboard my order
I heft its soggy heat like a lantern

a sigh of sober night pulls cool air in turbulent patterns with the yawning exit
I’ll shred my meal like kibbles in paws, dreaming the spine of snaky Great Walls

always whooping

a millennia of longing crafted each
perch in the spiral staircase of my
cells:

guarded formulas invoked to spark
dry branch-bark curls into flickering
light,

the connate imperatives of nibbling
anxiety, which gnaw upon the deepened
dusk,

a bare and violent thirst that can
only be slaked by ardent swallows of
affection——

——make mute this crowd of genes;
I am driven deaf by sharp bellows of
ancestry.

chest of crayons

the old wood cask is still there, longer than it is deep, nearly
the size of a music box, with no hinged lid, but one that lifts
off like a sarcophagus top made of rough construction lumber
that’s begun to flake away in chips near uneven edge seams,

butting not quite flush, joined at
imperfect obtuse angles to one

another; it’s coarse-bristle painted with a wan of yellow milk
like banana meat, and sealed by a thin silt of years in Egyptian
style, stamped and inscribed—an unremembered curse been
scrawled in tottering wax—the shorthand for a moniker, gone

decades prostrated in a gully: when
the writing of names was a pagan

ritual aimed to stake permanence on the mundane; inside, a heart
constructed from Crayola nubs and torn sheathing paper, stacked
in rows and lain like lengths of peasants in a mass funeral tomb, who
sailed high into the afterlife—each with a title, from a time when it

was considered benign to call hues
and shades things like flesh tone.