I could write here,
hugged by the soft music
& soothing directionless light.
The knocks upstairs are mysterious enough to spark my circling imagination.
The cooped-up coffee machines have got silver eyes
& they scream their histories from inside glass cases.
The ceiling is showing off,
exposing the strutted beams
and creamy underbelly.
the photographs bend my window through history
& I feel the music smoldering in my heart.
The city yawned into a yellow pocket with goldenrod ambitions.
This lamplight is a cradle
& I don't even care that one of my buttons is coming unbuttoned.
A gold-faced clock stares me down
as it leaps from the wall
like a white rabbit
showing off its slow motion hands.
This room is a dusty August
with an open top;
a quiet wedding in summer's backyard.
For Poets and Coyotes in this Time of Economic Turmoil
Your words have got incredible currency
-deep fish-filled lungs tug at your river's underbelly.
Your words are a brush fire kept in a safety deposit box.
Your words are a rattle-snake's skin left to crisp along Hwy2
I remember that E-burg cop
who tried to impress us by rolling up his sleeves to say
"You know, this is the most dangerous stretch of road in all of Washington?"
Why do you think I am here?
These words won't rock me to sleep
& yes, thank you, while I do enjoy the blanket
of an unscheduled dream
That is not why I am here.
That is not the reason these syllables hit the pavement.
This road is not safe
this highway of sound uncontrollably hooking together is so dangerous
my teeth begin chattering away like 10,000 typewriters.
There are coyotes waiting in the wings
& the thick-edged fists of basalt lean forward like eavesdropping bouncers
who spit their broken teeth at passers by as their fight rumbles on.
This road is sunk between this threatening architecture
& a hard unforgiving sun
which bakes its history into you skin.
& I am here for the words goddammit,
the words that are hot & strong & dangerous,
the words that wedge me deeper between burnt rocks and howling hard places.
I am not here for network dreamscapes
I am here for the words that will never be comfortable in the mouth of the holster,
I am here for loaded pumps of possibility
& words that put bullet holes in my paradigms.
I am here for the un-crunching of numbers
for the miles to open their bodies into the journey position
I am waiting for my paycheck to waste away
I am here to watch its meaning whittled down to a stub.
Because your words honey em-
your words are dangerous & unbankable
& your words have got coyotes in their throats
Your words are a revolution running down your lips
& passed the last ATM days ago.
This highway is dangerous
but honey I am here
for all its curves & potholes.
I've got your penmarks scratched inside of my ribcage
and the back seat is stocked up with your deep and heavy-measured breaths.
We are moving forward with empty pockets and broken ball-points
but when the sun gets all eaten up
I know we'll have arrived
your words have got incredible currency.
You give me shivers of the skin
so small and numerous
I can feel the deadness crawling through each cell before it flakes.
The hanging-open heartbreak pops with blisters
& forgetting you is like dancing all night in my baby sister's shoes.
You've got to pop open their angry mouths before you sleep
we don't want a callous now do we?
I am tying myself in knots of gristle & whisper
Quickly- now is the time of guillotines & pendulums.
The clock sounds swirl and quiver into a waterfall of moments
I am not spending with you.
Another unfreckled fifteen minutes scrapes by.
And I notice the rotten-toothed horizon
that holds me
this sky yawns wider than the shriek of your name inside my ribcage.
I see you making volcanoes in the distance,
stop myself from eating the ash from your sky
& let the thickness settle.
Watching you ash over is harder than that he bedrock gone cold.
Only you can choose yourself out of the volcano.
& I am one more time keeping my mouth out of your sky
trying to feed my own hungry sunflowers.
But the mouth still moves in the shape of your skin
the gasps still punctuated by a smattering of overzealous freckles.
(and my God are your shoulders crowded)
I am on fire with ginger punctuation
there is a volcano in my chest
(and I can't tell who it belongs to anymore).
But now is the time of guillotines and pendulums;
a time a carefully calculated puffs of smoke,
To eat food that fills holes
but doesn't impact the soil content.
It's a lie to say I'm only here for you.
to hook my dreams into the mouth of the volcano.
I want our mountainy mouths to breathe smoke-spirits into the cracked-open atmosphere
& when our smoky bodies would touch the sky
you'd put thunder in my mouth
& shoot lightning from the teeth
our skins shifting so hard and fast
the elements shiver at the sight of us.
But the mountains are making the most of their time
and I am only building my own avalanches anymore
cold white cascades making time between ruptures
(I love you. I love you. I love you)
& I do hope that springtime comes before the next explosion
or at least before the blistering snow
claims any more climbing souls.
One More Former Student Goes Unemployed
I am the great white hope,
full of literature and promises
my belly is tearing from the weighted hooks of student loans.
They told my I could be everything
so I took classes on Rimbaud and Bukowski.
Instead of computer science or grant writing
I learned the way of the Albatross.
My teeth got broken from a too-long hanging on
I use the broken bits to scratch out cheerful cover letters
for jobs that hit me as wantless as their implied mouths mouthing
This poem is a headline
about my body falling like an omen from the sky
shot down by one more capitalist captain.