Thursday, April 30, 2009


This is too much pressure.   I
meant to wonder about the audacity
of quantifying the ‘bigness’ or the
‘smallness’ of talent.

I’m smart but not audacious.   (Is
a big splash in a small pond better
than a small splash in a big one?)
What’s with verbalizing, anyway?

The question comes more down
to ‘cult status’ – endless arguments
with best friends who, in their
indie hipnesses are posing just as
loud as a silver-plated fashion
mag on a Borders rack.

Getting bigger by becoming
smaller, My Hero.   If I were
trying to say something I’d
explain myself, right?   It
goes something like that,

falling asleep at the east end
of Whaleship Plaza with a
bird (small, no further
description) singing in my ear.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


In the soft-core center
of the after-party glow,
I graze my tongue discreetly over my teeth.
I understand everything now,
but where do I go from here?

Clearly something is very wrong.
Perfection makes me dizzy, though,
so you can compare your apples to oranges
all you want so long as you remain master
of the big waxy ball in my head.

He’s a sucker for war, I always heard.
Jim, keep these postcards coming.
Maybe a pair of ours will meet over the
Texas desert and a little ray of hope
will—and this is where I turn to Kevin
for help—

maybe a little ray of hope will
arrive via a new Facebook app
and we’ll each meet two new friends
who’ll ease us into one or two in the morning
so we don’t find ourselves crushed
like a tube of Colgate.

Bright young mopheads with
exuberant vanity
who coax us unfurled into our beds
where we milk the death out of sex,
another morning’s addled rhythms
a few nerveless dreams away.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Gorgeous Reception

I can hear you now.   I can
only respond I am only able
to respond, and not eloquent
ly.   And a square hot dog.

Stay true to the fact, my
dear, steer clear of fantasy.
Not my advice, obviously.
How boring to offend
no one!

I’m really developing a
mood.   I am devising a plan
and only you know about it:
You really look snappy or
My, you look snappy!

What a sucker I am.   Fuck
Tokyo!   I can barely hear
you.   Stock plunge forces
another argument about
fashion choices, fashion

Then I remember that
I already got a haircut
just yesterday.   Yesterday,
with whom I was so in love.

Monday, April 27, 2009


That they still need toilets is mysterious.
                                              —Stephanie Young

The markets are way down and I have to
pee right now.   This is the first time that
time stands still (in a very long time) and
let’s say it is all just a dress rehearsal.

Always check the rain schedule in advance.
I have a crush on Feeling Like but yes,
my relationship with Yesterday is as
serious as ever.   Maybe I just need a john.

His son is ten, I think.   It’s Tuesday and
last night it seemed almost summerlike
with fog.   I went directly home and
fell on the ground.   A new Ani D

album out today and I’m going to
buy it.                           —broke with a
tiny hair growing out between
two teeth so I go to the bathroom

I see it in the mirror and I don’t
have anything to pluck it out.
Back at my desk I pilfer through
vintage dentist goodies and find

some floss, flex that stuff until
my mouth bleeds, but flossing
always feels so good.   Nothing
works, though, until I spit out a

wad of gum gently brush it up
my gums like putty and voila.

Friday, April 24, 2009


In Line at Starbucks

Star of India, pale Elephant
Man, lanky spirit of my
inner pocket, do not go
out that door.   You came
in Tokyo.   I know your
hotel (what room number?).
Star of Georgia Plantation,
darker in spirit than my
left-hand neighbor, Shang
hai Seventeen, enumerator
of my inner waistband, do
NOT go out that door.   I
came here for coffee but
tuck my spirit between
your sock and ankle.   Oh
you’re wearing sandals?
Come over here.   I have
a couch for a hotel and
am not yet clear-headed,
Pale Singapore, Pale
Australasia.   Mind my
natty rims.   Parch my
fevered whims.   Just
watch me smoke one min
ute more esteeméd Star
of Uzbekistan, Stan of
my Oliver, man of my
momentary dream.   I
double espresso dare

Thursday, April 23, 2009


Sure, you’re the one
everyone falls in love with
what a flirt!   But you got my
number early on.   Did I get
yours?   I dunno, maybe
I was putting up the wallpaper
that day.   But the parties I
threw for you, they were in
sane!   Now I just sit here
and listen to the sirens.
Probably the same
ones you like to wash up
against the rocks.   Yeah,
I’m mixing things up a little
because now I remember
I didn’t get into your
pants.   The things I like
to remember.   Anyway,
you’re a lovely human
being.   I mean that as I
turn the temperature up
on the oven.   For you
I’d have another heart
attack.   But listen,
first can you help me
move the couch?   Now
that we’re alone you
can tickle me until
the moon falls back
into its golden sling
while I lick that ball of
a head of yours up from
Venezuela and around
back to Chad and
Lithuania before the
sun cracks each fan
tasy like a roll of quarters
on a big broken toe.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


This is easy.   Man
darin Chinese
bricks and urns
(no left turn).   Man
walks in with
no left arm, a
belly full of flowers,
distinguished cock
tails and foot police.
Birds on piano
wire sing plastic
buttercups open
til midnight serving
corned beef hash.
And in the back,
a pharmacy full of
honey-baked ham
and last-ditch Euro
pean tours.   Full
throttle Sunday.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Having not quite
every man (but
love).   Startover
reading Kevin’s
Kylie poems I
have the sun
now in my
pocket, the
disco sounds
of the city
streets upwaft
in my windows
with an airplane
talking about
healthcare and
stomach prob
lems.   Irresistible
notoriety.   I’m
too lazy to get
up to throw my
chewing gum
away.   But is
it instead too
enraptured too
in love as a
nother car horn
goes berzerk
and I pull out
my earbuds
just to breathe
a little?

Monday, April 20, 2009


The waltzes were beautiful but
the innuendoes were astounding,
with names I’d love to recount
like Bette and Victoria.   I was
surprised by how much gray had

gotten into your hair.   Before
going too far, I’d like to add
the moon.   Was full.   First,
we took the 38 down Geary
for breakfast at Seal Rock Inn

(eggs benedict).   Then, we
explored the ruins of the
Sutro Baths, taking pictures
of each other along the way.
Then we walked Ocean Beach

with Buffalo Bill Cody and
a representative from each
tribe.   Up into the park
for close-ups of various blooms.
On to Haight Street for burgers

and then home for a nap.   All
the while a lovely Saturday
with room to back up and start
all over again.   The waltzes were
beautiful but the innuendoes...

Friday, April 17, 2009


One more Beowulf
and I didn’t even
crack.   I’m all
Anyway You
Choose to Give
by The Black
Ghosts.   Makes
me think of you
and the paper
cranes having
up and flown.
I’ll experiment
with anger while
I miss them
(and you).   If
you’re looking to
extract a teardrop
I suggest a movie.
That’s the only
way, honey.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


Today, on Facebook, I Am Writing a Valentine.

This is tedious—my back aches too much—
I’m feeling my age.   Perhaps an
imaginary hike will do.

Otto’s chopping vegetables; a cool
breeze floats in from Los Angeles.
Send me a text message, will you?

How will this that started with love
end?   Music lyrics are appropriate.
I’ve gotten raw for you and now
you want this?   Come here and
give me a hug.

Dear Valentine,

You wake the rabbits in my heart.
My heart was the rabbit.   You
drive me insane with your fake
   There’s one for good

Tomorrow I will write you an
angry letter, my love.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


My Father, The Father

What does being a parent give you
that I will never know?   How does
adolescent anger and resentment
over not having the dad my
friends had grow into utmost
awe and respect.   I was reading
the newspaper every morning
(or thus my classmates would
have it) before starting school
(first grade, because they didn’t
have kindergarten the year I
was five), and this was all
because of you.   Every morning
for hours you and I were locked
away with ABC blocks and a
Fisher-Price tape recorder.   I’ve
no real memories of what
transpired, but can remember
the look on Mrs. Renfrow’s
face (first grade teacher)
when she had me out on the
playground during “rest
period” reading The Grapes
of Wrath
to her.   My father,
short-tempered like his dad,
wanted his kids to have the
things he never got.   Piano
lessons, for example.   I am
proudly my father in many
ways: perverse, flirtatious
(only its waiters and not
waitresses for me), stubborn,
well able to evoke a strong
sense of confidence, but
generally feeling small,
greedy, but with a keen
understanding of the of
the restorative powers of
generosity, often incapable
of empathy, difficult to be
satisfied with what is given
me, just plain difficult.   But
he clearly lived for his kids,
a father to three sons and a
daughter, a proud sire.   And
what that must feel like I
now feel is the big mystery.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Something romantic about walking
through dark San Francisco alleyways
at four in the morning.   Of a weekend.
Slaked with the throb of,
you guessed it,
dance music.

Losing your sense of direction can be
catharsis.   I remember trying to
drive home, three in the morning,
realizing I’m well past Roxbury,
somehow I’ve completely bypassed
Jamaica Plain.

I remember concentrating intently
on not hitting the construction barriers
on I-75 when I lived in Toledo.

How do I remember these besotted
moments when I can barely remember

Monday, April 13, 2009


Then the Bras Went Up

So how’s it going, skipping
time?   I think okay.   I turned
the green eye off, however,
only to realize that fantasy
requires physical proof of
existence.   Allow

exhibitionism to turn you
on and next thing you know
it’ll be pegging porn in
tea rooms.   Breathe with
ease and comfort.   Allow

the body to take over.   I
once had a cage full of
rabbits in my backyard.
Now I look for poems
in pillboxes, vaguely
recalling a stew of

rabbit shared with a
dining room full of
Little Rock drag queens.
A spirited discussion
about wigs.   But then
someone nearly chopped
a finger off (instead of
a carrot?) and after that

the memory disappears.
Tonight, a new friend
tells me he feels like
putting on his wig and
dancing around in his
room.   Let’s rather take
off our bras and go

cavorting in the moonlight.
It’s warm enough to streak
and my path to true engage
ment requires a certain
degree of perversity earlier
and oftener than these
memory banks goldenly
recede into oblivian.

Friday, April 10, 2009


The Glory of His Angry Eyebrow

I lost all of my movies.   The police
sirens remind me of this fact.
Honesty, with all its smoke and
mirrors, is what I am trying to
tell you.

Let’s get high and argue.   This
sense of belonging is important.
I will crawl around on my hands
and knees looking for contact
lenses (which I don’t wear)

while you throw the camera
out the door (along with yourself).
Anger is important.   I get dizzy
eating a cheeseburger and fries
reliving it.

Getting back to the anger is
where peace can be found.   I am
short-tempered but rarely angry.
Does this make sense?   If each
morning I clip the hairs that have

grown wild upon my face (ears,
nose, eyebrows) I take two solid
minutes to look at my sogged-
over eyes and recount one
angry moment,

the day’s primary problem is
resolutely solved. Peace and
happiness forever.

Thursday, April 09, 2009


As Evening Snakes Them

I misread a man about my heart,
his words a cool breeze after
a hot summer week.

Swooning through the hallway
I’m growing more confident that
love is the ever-growing purpose.

(I’m a late-bloomer, but now that
I’m in my 40s, enlightenment
comes with jaw-popping speed.)

A dull ache in my chest, I lose
myself in a deep trance staring
at a pepper seed in the carpet.

My friend has two snakes.   I
met the new one yesterday.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009


High on the couch with exploding
wind; the air at the ceiling having
found its depth or its relationship
to the floating furniture (incongruity
like TNT, which is how easy it is
to fall in love with the “wrong
person”).   Never a dull moment,
looking a lemur in the eyes.   As
if to say “I am right here with you.”
Or “Just yesterday we exchanged
places—I saw things ‘the way I
always wanted’—and today each
expelled breath sinks to the bottom
of the lake that used to lie in torpor
outside my living room window.”

Tuesday, April 07, 2009


an envelope
addressed to a broken backyard

                                          —Landis Everson

The fan on high; webcamming in the
afternoon.   A wealth of filth in the
boring carpet.   Loving to spice things
up, I try my damnedest to stay awake.
Things start happening.

Mom calls to inform me that she’s
wrapped her back porch round the
entire north side of her house.
Stores run out of sugar keeping
her hummingbirds quenched.

An email from a lovely friend I
haven’t seen in months; an invitation
to dinner.   Why should we quibble
with fate?   If you find me flirting
in the chatroom, just remember that
flirting leads to friendship.

Sunday, April 05, 2009


Pretending to remember is a glorious
device; the fan on high from too much
San Francisco summer.   I was talking
last night with someone in the middle
of a storm.   Trading tornadoes for earth
quakes was entirely too easy.   And easy
makes way for complacency.   So I do
my laundry and furrow my brow.

Today I am skipping time.   When it’s
too difficult to tell September from
January, what’s the difference?   How
ever, I’ve nothing really fanstastic
to say to you.   Unless you have ESP.

Friday, April 03, 2009


Reading this morning
at Jasmin’s drinking
coffee outside ultra-
beautiful day waiting
now for crab fried
rice and 5pm poem
swap at Union
Square for dinner
then Joanne Kyger
and Anselm Hollo.
Message in my
phone from “the
snowflake ;)”
makes me drunk
with happiness
as I eat a smoked
salmon sandwich
with Ralph Fiennes
followed by
apple pie and
the gym.   The
sun disappears
behind the St. Francis
Hotel.   Salvatore
Ferragamo sun.
Pigeon sun and
trolley car sun.
Louis Vuitton sun
covered by
fragile tree
blossoms as
my foot falls

Thursday, April 02, 2009


Rules made to be broken
suddenly seem sacred.
How I have swivelled
and swayed my way
out of this, the
indefatiguable dance.
Today we’re five to a bed
with sex, drugs, and rock
and roll, puzzling later
over how cherished this
unexpected fragment
of time has already
become.   Later,
filled with rocket
fuel, surrounded by
a conglomeration of
luscious tartines,
to find one’s hunger
utterly sated comes
as a shock to the
system, another
moment to savor.


capitalistic fury.