Archive for December, 2011

Happy New Year

31 Dec


Happy New Year, folks! We made it through another one…


Whether you’re spending your last minutes of 2011 kissing your sweetheart or hugging the porcelain after sacrificing some tequila down your gullet – just know that I wish you all a successful and destructive and tranquilizing new year; full of new fascinating, invigorating mistakes.


I’ll be transferring all the good pieces from December into the official material section when I sober up after the tonight’s celebrations (probably around the 2nd or 3rd), and then I have some new pieces to put up that have already been completed.






another useless ceremony

29 Dec



Samantha One, Two, Three


she tastes better with the rum

but I don’t tell her

I write it on a napkin instead

and order us another round

she looks relieved

slipping two fingers in my pocket

the ring and the pinkie sly

to snatch a cigarette

I am relieved

since I’m gonna use her for a poem

later tonight

if I ever make it home

alone or warm and warned

by her silver breath

and rutilant health

her wet skin nothing but a coin purse

for jangling souls

and crumpled hearts

and aging wallets made of cheapened leather

and other minds relieved

by this natural, astringent calm

of cynic expectations acquiesced

with a sigh that’s dull

as dull as the paint across her nails

that cheap dollar property

where someone’s skin hides underneath


the drinks, they finally come

as she steps back in

to sit down next to me again

after her smoke is done

after the familiar air outside seeped it’s way inside

and I am ready to test my theory

like clipping a lonely wing

because I know her

the way I know a few

ungallantly and cold

as senescent as small regrets usually go

and I am not at all surprised

relieved only as loneliness can be

that when she kisses me

she tastes better with the rum


A Short Rest

28 Dec



Let’s leave this shindig

before the pornography becomes a Pasolini film

before the milk and honey turn into a genocidal rancor


as the adventive bastard born into this wise murder of crows

I’ve only got silence left coating my tongue

like a bed made warm

by her naked leg spread across my thigh

a sweet and lovely slumber

a last drop of a Beatles vinyl before it rasps  

and you have to change your tune

a dream a dream a dream

another dream

and then


An Open Letter

26 Dec



            An Open Letter


            Every color bleeds into the oncoming day, with the vicious tempest of a freight train or an old cartoon character slipping off a cliff or a speedball driving through the vein.

            Are we an empty madness personified? Or do we really see the beauty in all of this.

            Ain’t no more miracles for sale.

            We wake up – alone, or with someone else just as bored – and we light a cigarette, brew a pot of coffee; take a shower, take a drink, have another cigarette.

            The hypothetical-she will get ready for work with a farewell kiss, while I sit in front of my typewriter glumly. Another drink.

            The devil pays a visit. Always a proposal waiting in his welcome, like a teat for an infant.

            Nothing changes. Just another small burial gift. A few coins jangling. A shave. A bespectacled fairytale aging.

            The hypocrisy of time is that it constantly expands, while simultaneously making you feel smaller, weaker. It is a mote you’ve been exiled to, slowly going under the spurs of the river bed, disappearing into the nothing and the everything that makes up the universe.

            This is the time when it takes genius, true genius, to eat the apple. Or to eat the cheese. Scramble the continuing construction. Destroy something. Make them build it again. But make them do it better this time.

            Reclaim Hyperionides! Use your charm if you have to.

            Watch out for the wanton wisdom of empty pockets, glance towards the movement of the sun instead. Fear invention. We’ve yet to comprehend the brutality within us, our own construct – yet we pretend as though we are entitled to discover the mysteries.

            Remain under the world. Ask questions without expecting any answers.

            Don’t rot the memory; it will decay on its own. I know, just as Mephi knows, what that steel halo is choking in my mind – but it’s fine as long as it’s bound; as long as it doesn’t have the freedom to roam around. As long as I can still see her in it, caged, I can use those melancholic, wistful hues so that my manifesto can write its own damn self. Self creation – it’s one of the founding paradigms of this dying country.

            Like fucking in the comfort of your own home or your own destiny. Melpomene humidifying the air as the fluid of mercurial, immured amouracher or amoureux. Some well-read French girl in the gust of the starry celestial bliss, hanging lovely words on coat hangers along with her clothes.

            Not the best one. Not an ancient hymn. Not a clever whim.

            The certainty of finish is better, indeed, than reading Vergil.

            I don’t mind the pain as long as I am certain of the finish. Time is only a restraint; there is always a key to unlock the shackles.

            There will always be a cheap room for the execution.

            There will always be a princess of the dust.  

            There will always be ugly men who strive for pretty words, teaching their souls that it’s the devil carrying them on his back because he has more time. As much time as a vacant car lot.

            I know. And one day there will be no more choices to make.

            Every color bleeds into the oncoming day, like the shards of the Muse’s hand-mirror reflecting the canvas of the world or like a blood orange peeling into wine or like the canto of pain, certainty and conclusion ghostwritten for a bard by stubborn drunkard.

            This has been an open letter to the soft quietude of dissolution.

            Let me be right in my search of ambrosia.

            Let me remain young a little while longer.

            Let it all come to some sort of meaning.


Fuck Christmas: Redux

25 Dec





A finale

As I age with my women

each one like a lovely overdose

a marvelous succumbing

a mysterious matchbox

full of tricks and fire

And as I age with those that are gone

I am ragged, but I know a little more

I become less and less distracted

less frequently dilapidated

in murk and early hours

More and more fastidious

constantly anxious about getting the words out

while I can still remember them

Straying closer to home these days

like a wild cat being domesticated

across the heimal years

eating merciful scraps

caterwauling against the musical torture of the world

a cavernous sound like a choir

a dark, smiling simile akin to your girl’s new lover

performing “Hallelujah” in the John Cale arrangement

like Buckley’s specter reborn a hipster

while she worships at his feet like a leper

miserable, unconscious and close

And yet I age

again and again

over and underneath

completing something lost in the way

trying to ignore the lilacs


crushed by the mounting absolutes

and the fadeless unacceptance  


Fuck Christmas pt. 2

24 Dec



Happy holidays!

Whilst my Christian friends are celebrating a theohistorical inaccuracy

and my Jewish friends are eating Chinese food

and my other friendly miscreants howl into the cold in rebellious glee 

I wish to let you know that

I love you all

except that one asshole

…but I’m sure a syphilitic mistletoe is in his future…

So, let have that one more drink

The one that we shouldn’t have

The one that makes merriment crude and joyful

The one that says fuck it and gives the barmaid a generous tip






21 Dec



I finished this one with a sincere sweat: with nothing on my mind but a bath and a trip to California. If other lewd individuals are looking for a way to “celebrate” the first day of winter, check out these Musical Parades happening throughout NYC tomorrow.


A Prayer, Barely


Curled up in bed with a woman

Curled up in bed with a bottle

Rarely curled up in bed with a book


like milk in a poor kid’s stomach

breaking the beating coming up

This life sure is rough

A bitch with money on her mind


with too much stock in fevered dreams

But I don’t sleep

I don’t vanish

instead I wander

like a nomad with eyes of Benzedrine

a nightmare on my shoulders

a nightingale in my breast

to remind me of Keats and his commitment

memorized, but impotent

my lucent bonhomie has hardened

turned to a gravestone for a heart

by love and interaction

and the death of friends

I’m getting fearful

knowing my own time might be drawing near

but it’s hard to leave this spoon unknown

longing for Big Sur like heaven

covered in whiskey and past mistakes


Painting by Harland Miller

Other work by Harland Miller available at:

Free Advice

20 Dec



Free Advice


Squeeze an angel from your chest

or a beautiful, magnificent beast

maybe a Greek deity with skin of Ouzo

or something else that burns

something with a leather jacket on

something smiling like a family lie

a tear drop that I always draw

tattooed on my back

facing away


Now, when you’re writing, sweetheart –

remember to kill off the main character

in the first twenty pages

that’ll scare ‘em

that’ll remind them that they’re not immortal

not so unique that they can’t die

make him obnoxious but endearing

so that they can relate

so that he’s worthy of his death


But make sure to write

otherwise why push it down

the burn makes such little sound

just a little hissing

facing your way


Spitting Something Old

19 Dec



“And death shall have no dominion.
Dead mean naked they shall be one
With the man in the wind and the west moon;
When their bones are picked clean and the clean bones gone,
They shall have stars at elbow and foot;
Though they go mad they shall be sane,
Though they sink through the sea they shall rise again;
Though lovers be lost love shall not;
And death shall have no dominion.”


–         Dylan Thomas “And Death Shall Have No Dominion”


            Mephistopheles told me a story of how Dylan, before dying drunk at St. Vincent’s Hospital shedding no regretting tears, joked only days before of how he had eighteen straight whiskies and thought that that had to be the record – the bellboy at the Chelsea Hotel would later remember those to be his last words of record. I’m sure Mephistopheles made sure of that. He said that he was the one that put the catheter into his arm, the one that hired that quack doctor to tend to the poet in the first place, the one that was there to listen to his last breaths.

            He said that he liked the writers who died with a sense of humor: how Chekhov wanted to commiserate on the fact that he hadn’t “drunk champagne for a long time” or Alexander Pope claiming to be “dying of a hundred good symptoms”, Oscar Wilde making his last words a dying humorist’s challenge – in reference to the shabbiness of the hotel room wherein he died, impoverished he barked out his final challenge: “my wallpaper and I are fighting a duel to the death. One or the other of us has to go.”

——But I spoke to him of how Charlotte Bronte on her death bed just wondered why she’d have to be separated from her husband, who she’d been married to for only nine months – a period of time ironically linked to the blossoming of life rather than the unwinding unto death – saying as she lay dying: “oh, I am not going to die, am I? He will not separate us, we have been so happy.”

——Mephi told me scoffing that he was sure that God was probably jerking off to that presumption, but for him – he informed me that he thought that it was a little soft and sentimental, hard to feel one way or the other about it. He told me that I shouldn’t create any symbols out of it.  Some people just know how to love, especially when they’re dying.

——I told him that I wasn’t afraid of death. 

——He retorted that that had to be a good thing, because death was surely not afraid of anything.



18 Dec


A carton of Marlboro Red 100s. A bottle of 12 year old single malt. The portentous delight of a finely rolled spliff. My night is only made better by the promise of some Chinese food on the horizon. A few days of rest after having pushed through a large chunk of work are well deserved.



Watch out for the strange little man that resembles Leoncavallo


Like an alien life-form


starved by a besieging world

gasping for a measured sentiment

tangled in the air

muddled as the wrong gin

grown pallid

like a dying hero

in a picture.

Her lips

a smokestack

meant to fade


an ascension

little syllables woven together

like a premonition

speaking in subtitles

like an old Italian film

skipping over the erudition

a bad transition

and the intricacy

and all notable meaning

like a worn bible in a flea bag motel next to a bottle of Old Granddad

a joke with blood on the mattress

an occult acculturation

a broken cigar to a broken man

lachrymose and barely there

I want to find her intimacy

because she remains steadfast

obstinate, with her little balled fists at her hips

she looks at me

precious and procellous

dreaming and perilous

and I swim no longer

instead I drown in the mercy of the situation




Hard R

17 Dec


In the midst of my editorial procrastination, my lighters running out of ignition, I checked out some end of the year lists and ran into this cat Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire (who’s chosen moniker relegates him to stay an underground novelty receiving a lack of airplay): he might be nasty, but he also might be brilliant. A feminist he’s not – be warned, but it’s been a while since I saw a Brooklyn MC spitting the same vulgarized, idiosyncratic expressiveness. Like a more versatile, less iconic ODB he comes with drunken, head-bobbing, profoundly pornographic rhymes. Huzzah, motherfucker!



The remix of “Huzzah” notably features NYC-underground old head El-P, as well as indie hip-hop darlings Das Racist and Danny Brown. Production by horror-core vet Necro.  



Free download of his official mixtape “Lost in Translation” can be found at:


Check him out on Tumblr at:


Anyway, thank you for indulging me. I’ll get back to the Caves and Cohens (and the other usual suspects) tomorrow.




Above All Things: An Antithesis

13 Dec



Stretching out to a poem a night has become dizzying. Moving onto editing the book some more tomorrow. There’s a pleasure to be had somewhere after that. A fragrant hint of something beautiful and internal. Something intoxicating and frustrating like falling in love with everyone you meet, hoping that they find their course. Sincere, like Johnny Cash singing “I See a Darkness” on American III.  


A Confession (the anchorite of apathy)


I lead a rhetorical life

and if money is speech  

I am generally tongue-tied

For those like me

death is speech

it’s how we express ourselves:

say it strongly

“miasmic delight in the dying fall”  

and you’ll clap

because I referenced Francis

because I pretend poeticism so well

then it’s woebegone

and a plea to trafficking charges

moving the cocaine of the highbrow intellectual

across cerebral lines

and I bow a lowly bow

then I belch like a yawning wolf

take my paycheck to the bar

to play nine-ball and drink with the hustlers

to find a woman with skin smelling of sertraline

so that she could coarse through my veins

for a night

so I can shine a bit in her spotlight  


pointedly tired of claiming a preoccupying disdain

for you and those alike

when really I strive only for some irony

to pigeonhole myself as a misanthrope

leftover rotten to explain

with no explanations left

wide eyed

if you wish it so

comforting if you believe it

if it helps you understand this world around you

and the liars that surround you charismatically

ready with curtsy and courtesy

always perishing

but so delightful



Louis CK has a new brilliant stand-up special (Live from Beacon Theater) available here for $5:


Jack Tsoy Tumult

Morose Pontifications and Other Poetic Ramblings

Copyright © 2010 - 2018 All Rights Reserved.