Archive for July, 2012

When Culture Staples a Cease-and-Desist Letter to your Forehead

31 Jul



A Poetaster’s Critique


Literature is going to die like jazz

as the smoky whisper of maladroit fingers culling

with only a small middleclass white audience

to adjust

to mourn the loss as fetishists

caressing the binding leather blistering their minds

inspiration deacetylated from creation to form that






totemic maggots in the brain without the funk

a retching bitch in the alley cold

6-Monoacetylmorphine for those that treat a Real Housewives marathon on Bravo

like a lecture from Spalding Gray

but, fuck it, the analgesic warms the workday of the dead

Coltrane, Davis, Parker – gone

The New York Times 10 Best “Books” of 2012 list can give me a sloppy rimjob

because it doesn’t matter anymore

we’re in the intellectual fading dawn at this point

and the day draws quickly

as it did on the New Wavers that danced to old Suicide records, without any irony in the

glittery glam 80’s,

in moody, nebbish polyester soon to be plaid rebellion

blinking in Morse code like impotent oracles:

W E  W E R E  N E V E R  S P E C I A L

but at least we used to think rudderlessly

with a direction everywhere

a new dull beauty to explore in innocent latency

but these inelegant fingers that took the bone from its case

are reaching for all the same notes that were played before

better in the all-too-apologetic, retrospective nostalgia


when poverty used to mean something

besides a funeral march to

smiling apathy


Self-Examination as a Post-It Note in Skewed Verse

29 Jul



I never thought that I would be completely alone

but then, none of us do

until the words turn proud

until the words become static

an accepted normalcy

a dour incrimination

like I must really be an asshole


and then…


ash gets in my eye

and as a human being

I should stick to peeling tangerines

instead of making lists:

I have to lose 10 pounds

(get somewhere in between junkie-slim and pothead-indulgent)

smile more

get away from the scalawaggery and skullduggery

get sane, get sober (in appropriate modicum)

go to the beach more to swim, instead of writing and burning on the sand

follow the political debate regarding Syria more closely, without noticing that some pundits are pronouncing the country in such a way that they seem intent on it rhyming with Chlamydia

(you’re welcome, rhyming dictionary – I know that it’s hard to get STDs to rhyme).


and then…


although it’s time to grab another drink

I have more and more work to do

a few grand to pay off

a sinking feeling to overcome

to talk myself out of unemployability

to find a meaning in all of it

a writer without much to write about anymore

except for things that are too real to describe


Some Savory Aestheticism

23 Jul


Sex & Bacon

(For Erica)


Hungry and horny

and it’s the morning

she draws me while I sleep

a lighted place where I have no good side

like a short story which ends abruptly

there’s just a lot of hair falling along each lethargic cheekbone like a cataclysm

that will decimate an indigenous island population  

I see her eyelash in my coffee mug when I awake

and she’s unwilling to see herself as culprit

in lieu, she rolls over in my direction and I want to lick her legs

long as lectures

while Polly Jean Harvey’s voice cavorts from the speakers

Time to brew another pot

but the empty can of Columbian beans mocks me smugly by the stove

I light a cigarette instead

and think about getting back in bed

a breakfast of her is a delicate proposition

filling as a lengthy childhood amongst the saintly

I take the salty meats to fry

glistening wet with grease or alchemy

and a lullaby is shushed in the hissing of the pan  

she calls me from the bedroom

and I tell her to hold on

just hold on, baby – I’ll be right there

a plate in each hand, I’ll walk in, like an erotic triptych

and bring her a meal we’re craven for

born into this new morning

hungry and horny



Some Notices

I will be renovating my Official Material Section this week to make it easier to navigate since more work is being selected and added to it.

Also, do yourself a favor and check out my friend Erica Castillo’s artwork (though she calls them doodles):

A Story That We Will All Soon Forget

21 Jul



Before the Perfume Fades


The barrel of a gun is less frightening

than the eyes above it staring cold

and you know that everything ends

in a quick, unburdened burn

but, it’s all good for now:

her lips

lecherous eyes and frisky demands underneath the table

and the best pancakes ever

at an all night diner on Tenth avenue

I’ll sip my coffee slow, baby  

because I never rush a good thing

until the lines get blurred

by threats and ultimatums

and all your maenads who have an opinion for you

The truth of that savagery is more frightening

than the way it really is

an illusion with a tongue 

and no regrets

until a shot rings out like a worried firecracker

and we see that nothing good happens in Brooklyn

as we believed before

when we were, as children, stoned and delighted

by the way

the sun shone across a rushing train

heading late to further destinations


Notes and Other Psychological Impairments

17 Jul



Come on, now,

Jack –

you’re losing it!

You haven’t written anything good

in a week

in two

in over a month.

Find yourself a woman to blanket softly,

one to help you sleep –

you’re a fucking wreck (no Edmund Fitzgerald references, please),

and you have a reading to do this Thursday.


I’ll be participating in a “Storytelling Night” at the Happy Ending Lounge  this Thursday, July 19th, (don’t worry, I’ll make it vulgar…)

302 Broome Street 
Between Forsyth + Eldridge

Come at 8PM to check it out


Gravity (Part II)

16 Jul



Gravity (Part II)  


            East Orange, New Jersey.

            The highway outside is as silent as a pink slip.

            The white light of the moon spreads across the sky like a Caesarean scar and the light is humble.

            The father wakes up from the sound of the newborn howling from the nursery next door. It’s 4 am.

            The father needs the newborn girl to sleep, for them both to sleep, the bones are aching, he needs a taste, he needs a hit, the skin shivers cold until warm until cold again until sweat creates a robe to hide the clean skin marked like nudity by indecency and holes. Pick her up from his basinet, soothe her, coo to her, trade her to her lulling, vibrating Jungle-themed bouncer decorated by toothy animals with demented faces by Fisher Price, bought from an enthusiastic Dave who highly recommended it at Target a week ago. Now walk to the kitchen, pour water into a pan from the kitchen sink, set the water to boil, wait for it boil, sit on the couch, third gash in the leather partitioning if you’re reaching from the right, in the back, underneath, extend the fingers, grab the last bundle left from Nora, displace four bags, walk to the desk drawer right across from you, take rig out, place it on the table, go back to check on the water, it’s boiling, take a bottle with the prepared formula out of the fridge and into the pan, check on the kid, she’s bouncing and contented by an orange monkey dangling in front of her, back on the couch, forgot the glass of cold water from the tap, return to the kitchen for the glass of water, insert needle into glass of water as soon as you’re back on the couch, draw out 30 cc’s, let the needle sit, put the powder from the bags into the metal cap, pick up the needle, 30 cc’s into the powder, use the spine of the rig to mix the powder and the water into a solution, find the cigarettes, where are the cigarettes, found the cigarettes, fucking finally, take one out, take the filter out with the front teeth, take a sliver off the filter to use as cotton, place sliver gently into the solution, put the vertebra back where it belongs in the rig, look at the kid, she’s still alright, maybe getting a little anxious, pay attention, pay attention, put the tip of the needle into the solution, draw it in, tap the wall of the rig a few times to get out any air bubbles, that shit would hurt under the skin, now it’s ready, leave it for now as something to anticipate, the soreness becomes cathartic when you know that salvation is close by, go back to the kitchen, take out the water, check the temperature of the milky formula against your wrist, warm, not hot, good enough, leave it next to the needle, take the belt out of the jeans that you left on the couch the previous night, tighten the belt around a decent vein, no Olympic hurdles looking for a good one this morning, too early, too sick, pick the needle back up, stick it in the vein, gently, gently, don’t hit an artery, pull the plunger back a bit, did the blood come out, it did, diluting the light putrid brown to a mix of crimson and decay, push, inject, enjoy, indulge, now feed the kid.

            If there’s a Law & Order marathon on TNT today, we can furnish purgatory entirely of this – with enough money Nora might be willing to deliver even here.


*    *    *


            And so the sun rose like a jagged star.

            “So what are you saying?”

            “Alright, what I’m saying is, yes, I suffer (a verb that should be in quotations) from a clinical, cyclical depression, and yes, I used to do drugs in order to placate my various suicidal tendencies and pugilistic fancifulness (which sounds like some unpublished Hemingwayian manifesto), and yes, I cried more when Dobby the House Elf died at the end of the last Harry Potter movie than I did when sitting at my own mother’s wake as a teenager, and yes, I still drink like the Hardy boys look for mysteries until I spit up like a ragged mutt… and yes, I did love another woman (that later turned out to be one ruthless indecision after another) while I was married and left that life to pursue something impractical, romantic and inherently tragic – but I think I’m better now, and the only holes in my arms today are from the monthly drug screens I have to undergo in order to please my ex-wife, so that she can grant me some condescending bit of visitation with my daughter.”

            “And so, you’re resentful of this?”

            “No, man – I completely understand the fact that she wants to indulge in belittling me from her self-righteous, despotic vantage point. I just wish that she wasn’t so humorless. I mean, sadism can be a bit of fun if there was some wit behind it. It’s like making a joke about the murder of Pasolini.”

            “I don’t understand the reference.”

            “Don’t worry about it – I don’t understand how you hung all those degrees on your wall.”

            “With three hundred grand and a hammer, actually.”

            “See, now that’s funny!”

            And you, if you can find humor in any of this I’ll buy you drink, surely.

            We scheduled another meeting for next week. Maybe a new memory will be ravaged out of me. Maybe he’ll make another worthwhile joke.


A Satirical Tractate

15 Jul



A Panegyric Regarding the Tenacity it Takes to Bring Philosophy and Anal Sex Together


            They say that your work doesn’t get good until religious groups want to burn it and this one definitely isn’t a morality play or a Cole Porter song or a depressing birthday handjob.


*    *    *

            I move my mouth between her legs as though I was preparing to translate Song of Songs from the original Hebrew; kissing the outer skin of that sacred, effulgent chalice where the sweet nectar is hidden, seeking the same ripened pleasure that was sought by the ancient Taoists who liked to pretend that they were just replenishing their ch’i through their tongues.

            And as I expand to her further territories like a craven warlord, I ask and she replies like antiphony:

            “It’s nothing.”

            “You sure?”

            “Yeah, put it in my ass if you want.” She demonstrated her willingness by bending her posture appropriately.

            “I doubt that it will make me repent for anything.”

            “But it will make you cum.”

            You laugh in the face of god with your transgression. It is only kink. Only a lark. Some sort of scintillating, lecherous perversion. Just a laugh.

            “Will you keep your crucifix around your neck?”

            “You know that I never take my jewelry off.”

            Is this a moral violation? Is this a violence? Is this conversation the soul of feminism; a sight of pleasure in a parable by Aristotle? Fuck it. Who knows?! I’d rather take Jynx Maze, send her to the French Culinary Institute (now known as the ICC with a convenient location in SoHo), then pay her to cook crepes for me in the nude; buoyant and immeasurably impressed. 

            I could have attempted a joke to start things off – “I have the syphilitic corpse of John Wilmot stacked next to my winter coats in my closet ready for reanimation, so we can make this a threesome if you want” – but I choose to remain mute instead and focus my attention on her radiant posterior which was still erect off the bed like a monument floating away from inconvenient historical allegations.

            Is this poetic journalism? Is there a face to the characters? Or maybe they are just words on paper underneath the weighing elements.

            In this still moment, full of racing thoughts and anxiety about performance (for some reason the only parallel that comes to mind is when Indiana Jones enters the cave inside the Canyon of the Crescent Moon where the Holy Grail is kept in the third film of what used to be a trilogy – the mix of fear, defiant machismo and perspiration on his face), I begin compartmentalizing memories: I once fucked a girl in a stranger’s backyard in the Brighton Beach neighborhood of Brooklyn. Hidden away from the street, we were bodies pulsating, sweating in the summer heat. In. Out. Her body a half arc, thin arms straightened out to balance her weight against the wall of the building which preserved our privacy from the view of the passerby likely milling about.

            I said “no condom”. She said “no problem”. That was my first experience with a girl letting me penetrate her from behind. I was 16; she was 15. I fucked her there – but I’ve never fucked a Republican. Which is odd because an unwavering allegiance to the GOP can likely be psychoanalytically correlated to some unresolved Freudian anal fixation (nothing to do with the fact that it always seems to be a Republican governor that gets caught in a motel room with a teenage twink and a couple of grams of meth – I know people that would simply qualify that as a good time). Seems like we should get along better than we do, especially considering my libertarian leanings.

            But, anal sex, really, is like trying foie gras for the first time: as soon as you get past the unsavory realization that what you’re eating is a duck liver that was force-fed corn and alcohol until the point that it inevitably burst like a cirrhotic firework of flavor, it’s actually pretty tasty if prepared correctly. It becomes a pleasant and decadent experience. Tight, warm, a little rougher than usual. Which brings me to lubrication: simultaneously important in the practical, literary and philosophic sense.

            She had been on top every night and mid-afternoon for the last two weeks, and maybe her acquiescence to this erotic exploration was levied from either guilt in keeping me underutilized or maybe just a craving to change the structure of the model – either way, I took out the lube and spread it liberally, cool on shaking fingertips, and it seemed to be that this process was similar to Darwinism somehow. Like a tussle between logic and faith where logic should inherently win, but doesn’t always. In October of 2010, The Journal of Sexual Medicine published a study that revealed that women who’ve indulged in anal sex achieved orgasm 94% of the time in comparison to the 65% who achieved climax after vaginal penetration (and 84% after receiving oral stimulation, with respect to that particular art form). The results of this study were, with near immediacy, reported and reposted on various blogs, as well as between the covers of several popular magazines easily accessible at your local Whole Foods. So, during those wonderfully trivial few months, like a moss of stars thick against a black canvas, men all over the United States were bargaining anxiously, canvassing their wives and girlfriends, putting a toe in at a time into the lukewarm water of their propositions by asking whether they were “into it” to start things off. Maybe, even going with the “wouldn’t it be funny if we tried it” approach. Personally, if I was ever the trepidations sort, I would go with something like: “…and I hear that Sinead O’Connor is really into it – and anyone that can do such a great version of The Family’s “Nothing Compares 2 U” (other notable mentions are the Stereophonics and my favorite punk cover band/super group Me First and the Gimme Gimmes) and later be ex-communicated by the pope must be a luminary in most aspects of her life. So…”

            When we begun, we each exhaled – I can’t necessarily tell you if it was for the same reasons. And when I came, she came, we came together. It seemed more than it was, but it wasn’t. She fell asleep next to me while I stayed awake for another month or so thinking about how all philosophy has finally crumbled.

            The next morning I brewed coffee while she scrambled some eggs.

*    *    *


             They say that your work doesn’t get good until someone shoots you and then asks for your autograph. So what will come of this? When they read this, they’ll likely ask – “Jack, is this true? Are you writing some droll 20 minutes of Sodom?” Definitely not. “Is this thematically part of your cataloguing of love, or death… is this some glorious accident or divine, wild mumsimus?” The answer, shortly, is “I don’t know”. All I know is that no farewell is ever free or fair. My writing is simply my attempt to pay a debt and to acclaim experience. I just never want to become the type of writer that has to look up the word “orgasm” in a Thesaurus.


A New Short as Intermission

14 Jul


Working on them, motherfucker! In the mean time, I just found out that one of my favorite musicians, Cage (Chris Palko) has been working on new material. Check it out on his SoundCloud:



Damp Short


Playing poor

we turn suburban depression into the urban lack of time

our heads are filled with dust

dusted on the pavement

waiting on a plus one like waiting for a lover to become familiar

each moment we know that each of us

is but the urchin in the background of the masterpiece

heading to the dank cellar of the private collector next to his prized wines

corked until momentarily born

waiting to be defenestrated by life

like Curt von Bardeleben

free to be zombified by some new Nabokov


Getting the Cobwebs out of the Prose

08 Jul


The pieces that I promised are still coming, just getting my footing around their subject matter correctly so as not to stumble.


            What a strange and kind bedfellow death makes.

            I wrote of her since such a defective youth; when I was still too young and inexperienced to know the glory between her legs. Each bride she saw me take after I first climbed her myth became but a coffin draped in mournful velvet and fading mystery. She, too humble to drink with me. Too wild to dance slow. I, too weary to rest at twenty-five. Too stubborn to pay her to leave. Too weak not to sleep with her over and over again as though merely nostalgic for what stirs and culminates inside of her. That regal bitch, she suffered all my clumsy attempts to please her.

            I was sitting on the beach again waiting for it all to happen. Waiting for it to overtake me. Remembering her clit, the taste of dry plums and aged single malt scotch.

            The waves roar in broken salvos, crying like reprimanded children. I put my feet in the sand and wonder whether it’s merely a decent day for bananafish. I wonder what death is doing, who’s primordial bed she lies in tonight. She always liked the beginnings of things, just like any other beautiful woman with a tempestuous temperament.

            I have to remind myself that I don’t get jealous. Not anymore.  


Notes about a Girl Named Irony with a Nice Ass

03 Jul


So I started writing this poem…


Come to me sacred and lost

like a rebirth in archaic belief

a cathartic reprise

because I still miss you like I miss heroin at night

and on those mornings that are hued gray by a drying desperation

and you just want some penetration to know that you’re still capable of feeling


… and then I said “fuck it”, like I didn’t need the pride or the self-containment, because I realized that the piece sounded like everything else that I’ve been writing lately. Even a stoic antihero with a bad liver has to watch that he doesn’t waste his time in awkward repetition. Thus I decided to take some time typing up a few new pieces that have been bathing in ink for a while. They’ll be published here in a few days: but, FAIR WARNING they are quite NC-17 thematically. So if you are easily offended I would skip the next few pieces that you’ll see from me.



Coming Work:

The long awaited Gravity Pt. II will be here 


The One Regarding the Tenacity it Takes to Bring Philosophy and Anal Sex Together


Jack Tsoy Tumult

Morose Pontifications and Other Poetic Ramblings

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