A Rescue, Needless

It was a Sunday afternoon when I see
What is polished with a child’s scream
Wrapped in barbed wire and a priest’s warning
A nightmare for those who no longer dream

In admitting my wrongs
There escapes the quiet sigh
Of an alcoholic, an addict and a cry
Stifled, from the other side

On another Sunday afternoon
With a pending relapse, half a mind
Again, I am at an empty bar
With an empty glass of wine

At the mercy of my sins, I confess –
That with laughter and too full a heart
I gave up my tragedy
Only for this to become my art


Seasons don’t exist during a whirlwind

Take me back to when bartenders would make
Flowers out of napkins traced with an ex-lover
It was a summer heart glowing into winter
A love that asked before he kissed
And kissed before he touched, a heart
Ignorant to how pain is read
Between the lines because he doesn’t
Know hurt and he can only dance
‘Round and ‘round under the full moon
Yet he falls asleep, deep into dreams
Where he grew flowers between my thighs
From the napkins he kept

Water-throttled Chords

I am the one in the clouds, drinking rain
To get the rasping words out
This is about how I found my voice
But my voice hasn’t found the sound

This is about how I gave myself a name
And my identity wept sweet grief
As this is who I became and it is
Different from whom I was meant to be

This is how I forced myself to heal
To soothe the wicked ones, say goodnight
Pull out the wrench in my heart
Set ablaze my light

This is about how I haven’t said
A damn thing in months unless I make
The words I don’t want to say articulate
I wrote this poem to no one

And no one wrote back

When My Writing Confronts Me

Why, how I feel peace
When I no longer need to lie
Because I admit I can’t remember
Why and why I write

And I snort and lick
The craft of all highs
Choking out something to sell
You don’t know who you’re letting down

I am eroding the surface
I am scratching at my past
I have my

Greed on recall
Speech all high strung
This is a married man’s dance
I am the eager one

Standing Up Straight

I am a wretched, long forgotten
Freedom fight, the type that gets no
Pity despite a pretty way

I am a hard-headed devil with
Horns that stand up straight, pointing
At the heavens after Hell
Chokes and coughs me out

In musk and fog, fire suddenly burns
A ghastly smell roams
I am seeing it all from the eyes of God
To find even God knows nothing

It is a glorious night
Under the ropes of noose
Under the dangling vines

It is the time

For ones like us to shine
And clash like intricate rhymes
The downpour of a world broken loose
A world in cinders without light

An Interpretation of What is Happening in Ferguson from Down Under

I am not oppressed
I will not say I understand
I don’t have to be afraid of living
I know I am not black
But I know that, I know that
Nobody’s last words should be
Dying and still begging –
You were meant to protect me
Tell me why, please
Why are you killing me?
What message does this send?
If this is the system
The system needs to end

My soul is pleading for justice
Screaming at the paradox that is
Mike Brown, shot in cold-blooded murder
Rest in peace, a single fallen soldier
One of many whose wings are clipped, beaten
From living, they haven’t stopped fighting
A five hundred year war
The people are still dying
From a war they never signed up for

I will not say I understand how it feels
But oh God, I understand the horror
That this is plain murder over and under
Open your eyes, America
You protected a fuckin’ murderer
So I understand why the people are angry
Why the people are hurt and betrayed
By those with a gun in their belt, still breathing
Ignoring they are tearing apart
The community, tearing apart
The families, tearing apart
The country, tearing apart
The protestors who only wanted peace
Open your fuckin’ eyes, America
Why is it so hard?

Though the same sun is still rising
The same sky beautiful blue
Don’t dare say nothing’s wrong
This is corruption through and through
Oh America… they trusted you
America, you murdered the dream
America, he was only eighteen
America, I am crying, America
Where is the land of the free?

White space, line break

I have somewhere to be
I’ve spent two hours shaking
Intense as the stench
Of crack withdrawal at the
Crack house, come and be
I do not fit the role in lead
I cannot feel the boundaries
Of my skin fingers head feet
Tapping at a frequency
To the power of three

There is somewhere I have to be
But the door, the path, the way
Has been closed since the trees
The forest turned green
In the season, not spring
The brown tinge, rotting leaves
Shaking legs shaking voice chord
Breaking apart at the seams
Like a poor girl at a broken
Sewing machine, trying
Fixing what she is blind to see

This is not where I am meant to be
With its four walls, bleached
Stains, carcass in corners
Suffocation under floorboards and roof
Blurring warping boundaries
Of blinking text blinking eyes winking
Mouth sewn, never to speak
The needle point is blunt
Abundant ideas in a memory
Of limited capacity, what
I do not need, I need
The world and what it means

She’s got words for the world

She’s a cunning poet
With deadly intent
A daring poet, a snarky poet
Spitting with contempt

She’s a sweet-mouthed whore
She’s a diplomatic bore
A falsified fool, a wretched
Soldier in a wretched war

She’s a pretty parade
A saint cursed by fate
Not anybody’s girl, always
A stitch stitch stitch too late

She’s a tick-tocking clock
A tick-tocking blowing bomb
A woeful war lost
Another war won

She’s a sing-song poem
She’s a wanton wife
A lip-locking, lying lady
My oh my, it’s all fine!

Stress Speech

Last summer I taught my left
hand how to write and they asked
me why I had to know how to do
everything, I just do

The library weeps for me
because she knows what it’s like
to be cursed with a soul so deep
and to know so much so early

I vowed to make sure the woman
in the painting will never forget my name
so she will cry it beyond her grave
loud enough for me to shake

I can no longer read Shakespearean
tragedy without silent contemplation
I shiver at the moral depravity
of the one who still smiles like a fool

Shut up about burning the house down
when you’re too scared to play with fire
I have always been a nightmare
This was never a place for cowards