Posts Tagged ‘Sensitive Poet v.s. Former Professional Asshole’

this is how we almost feed ourselves


15 Mar

————

———–

Less Tense Than I Was The Last Time I Confessed

 

it’s not your fault that you don’t love me

don’t want me

I, of course, am an acquired taste

a factory of fantasies and fingers

a taste of liquor and sincere, black rabbit sweat

and I just bought a beer

and I’m too tired to either be complacent or considerate

more so than this

in other words, I’ll be fine

elusive in the ether, we only find illusions

it was my homey, not me, that ripped his hand apart

I’m no romance-stigmatic

and besides, your brand of bullshit no longer stings as much

as it did before

now I just write it out in a night

quick poem, reflexive now almost; no six hundred page tomes begun

the other one (the one that was for you,

                         your hand, your button, our little button, a tiny face

                         that looks like mum – because she’s the prettiest star,

                         like the dance I should have accepted when you were sick –

                         for your ebon curls down your back, bared,

                         I massage you, oil, a stoner comedy on the screen,

                         something with rogen probably, but that shit

                         was long ago, and now the one that was for you

                         is a relic of warning, mourning, desperation,

                         sex as sacrament, bad vibes, nervous hands,

                         sangria at some west village Spanish spot,

                         some dress you wore and then took off…)

yes, that other one, motherfucker’s still going, you’d be surprised

and maybe when it’s done… ah, fuck it, princess

no more crowning the authors no more

casually, you know why my hands are eventually coming off

not like my friend, but sort of

the reasons, now, seem strikingly similar

but none of this is your fault

I get that

I guess I’m older now

and priorities have been forced on me

because of mistakes (the miserable sort)

because of madness and pride

my big head

my feeling of entitlement to affection

my lack of time

anyway,

if you change your mind

and you want your man to cook your eggs for you

I’m two hours away by train

come see me

you know where I am, keep shining

 

———–

starved


28 Jan

———————–

———————-

hunger

 

there’s just not enough of her

they all stare hungrily

as though she was other than invisible

objects that are not objects

animals of reexamination, improvising

things that aren’t there, never alone

those which have been let go, on their own, for long

are those that are sought the most

struggled for and languished on the most

and I’m amongst them

staring hungrily, unfed

like when she says, as I’m about to leave

‘I’ll stay at the bar for just a little while longer…’

and I see the way they look

they don’t want to open up community centers in the hood

they don’t want to write novels to keep the turtle’s back firm

they don’t want to stick around just to see what her kids will look like

whose reflection they will take

… but it’s a pointless urging

I’ll leave the bar and pretend to trust her

as their laggard fingers take her dress off leisurely

we all pretend there’s theatre here, and destiny,

and now

but our days grow meager, thinned

about as dense as headlines

and we’ve all been so esurient and keen for such a while

we stare at her as though she were a feast

as though there was anything to eat there

and our disappointment becomes the continued rumbling of the belly

and our ambition becomes to quench that need

and we create shiny pretty things to fatten up the next meal

hoping we’ll finally have our fill

hoping to sink our teeth into some satisfaction unabstracted
———————-

twelve past midnight 01


18 Jan

————–

————–

poor

 

this road has

            been

            so slow

            dripping

your little boots like kidney beans

the colors wet

mud and rain water, the broken tooth

from Spanky, the Redfern larker,

who hollered at the wrong chick,

floating like the first carrot, just for flavor, in the soup

 

each boot

            drops in

            the cinereous mood clinging, viscid

            until

you finally reach the building

where I used to live

selfish in the duds of unpaid bills

you didn’t bring daisies or a sundress

just yourself in a heavy overcoat you got from some other man used as proxy

who no longer lives for you, many leases signed ago

 

the wait is

            retaliatory, combative

            a relationship to immolation

            but always a preparation for the next

you ring the doorbell, percussing lightly with a gloved paw

marked pink in the western orbit like a late winter afternoon

from where your college roommate spilled her tea kettle

around the time when we first met

I kissed your hand then

but tonight, darling, there’s no one home

————-

lovesong


26 Dec

—————-

—————-

lovesong # 3

 

ever find yourself

inside an embittering novel-size cruet

simply wanting

a good woman

to be proud of you

the brilliance through her supine time culet

 

* * *

 

a children’s game

is pleasant for a lifetime

but sometimes pen turns to whiskey turns to window-shutters waiting on a wind to be discovered

regimes change

madness becomes progress, and what others call refinements hover

and what I call minor renovations are achieved

 

* * *

 

and then there’s better steps and idols

and sentiments you want exchanged

interlinking, simplifying

but a day becomes the night as true

as eager fingers find excuses

 

* * *

 

there’s nothing in it

nothing

but pleasant memories, eventually

and that’s enough really

all you have to do is love her and to love it all

—————-

hold on to it, if it’s true


15 Dec

——————

——————

nostomania

 

I never believed myself worthy much

but I don’t concede, I won’t give up this stubborn pushing

despite that in the past with you

as always I wanted more than I could get

more than I could sweat through

and if we’re really being honest, no anniversary flowers bought, I probably didn’t try hard enough

and yet, as I write this

you know the remaining truth

which is

that I am still the unsurrendered and as much morning as this weed will let me see, I’ve been right all along

making the 2-hour trip (from Queens to Harlem),

buzzing from downstairs, an interminable mounting of your stairs

trying to impress you with some softness in my words

or something cooked to remind you of the beginning of the movie

maybe a joke would be better suited

I thought of us and you

and your newest year and you

and I thought that there is something to

that we’ve both grown up a little

and some history has passed

that it’s a good day

because back then, that time before,

the only way a woman could cum

is by getting hysterical and seeing her local physician

 

when I was younger, I always recoiled at the word ‘lover’ – I found it antiquated, overtly-baroque – but, once my life caught up to the true materialization of that word’s intent, then I realized that, though a more neoteric synonym could be conceived to task as an appropriate colloquial replacement, no other word would really do – like from the root, then to the stem, then to the bloom and crown above; the beauty lies in the honesty and the simplicity of the qualification denoted

 

like, my skin: her skin –

the narcissism of the shadow

the crooked picture is the one that gets the second look

and I can’t offer you the stability of money

or that I won’t ever be cruel, or condescending, jealous, obstinate, bad breath in the morning, a drunken fool once a fortnight or two, minor post-adolescent acne, a beard that won’t grow in right, obsessiveness with the details, every birthmark on your skin

and I do tend to treat the hoi polloi as either children or long lost friends

and I’m a big proponent of morning sex – especially in my apartment – and if you’re here, I wake up early; my cock, your smell, like an alarm (I hope that you won’t be late to work)

and I know you hate it

when I’m spitting on the sidewalk

potential evaporation and bio-degradability be damned

and it’s icky that I still have my third cup despite the fact

that the coffee makes my palms irriguous and dewy

I’m not good on paper

and

I can’t promise you to change any of it fully,

never been released on good behavior yet –

what I can do is to keep on trying

always

and maintain a sense of humor getting it accomplished

step by step

 

(rhythm is reaction and repetition

and so, here’s another one

darling, welcome to my heart

… let’s dance,

like you were sick and I was scared and healing)

 

—————–

hmmmm… what’s he scribbling over there?


20 Aug

————–

————–

serein

 

one should stay away from small and fragile things

they break far too simply

this holds true

for cellphones

matchstick houses

the willpower of sparrows in Eastern European apocrypha

gameshow contestants who just quit their 9 – 5

and especially, capricious Jewish-American princesses from the Upper West Side of Manhattan

who all look like a seventies Mia Farrow

with flowers in their hands, stuck as a lovely intruder in a Dory Previn song,

standing taut at troubled doors

a twilit, dark-haired contrast

to the endless highways of country songs

an internal explosion seen by the manner of their lips and brows

supernova blood I noticed in them, in her

the basis of all comparison like the self-fancying original she is

a bistered soul for every eye, shining, numinous

like keys forever out of reach

each a casuistic promise of heart and hearth

embrace like the opening hanging note

sweeping, escaping stunned from the orchestra

but, you know, it’s like what John Prine wrote in ’71:

sweet songs

never last too long

on broken radios

————

lidocaine for the soul


20 Jul

—————–

—————–

last

 

and I woke up by her side again

and it was a miracle that stuck

a manifesto waiting to burn through my stomach

my body perihelion before her

two weeks and a solo performance

warm, inviting, it soused me whole again

as such, contained, we’d walk past the libraries – where the lies are buried

past the creaky oblivion of daily routine, all of you with your self-eclipsing retinue

past the leaning mugs of hoary scholars and the weary roguishness of lively buskers

(of whom I was a patron saint)

and we would rest on the rusting grass of Washington Square Park

turning puce like my eyes at the end of an acid trip

her head on my stomach

tender, pillowed out just for her comfort

and because a late night Checkers opened on my block

five dollars for two American bacon melts

make this impoverished lush feel nearly patriotic

1,200 shitty calories and a pocketful of beer money

and now that we’re older, things aren’t but seem much simpler

the deadlines are more pressing but much easier ignored

and we lie here because we’re both good at conjuring excuses

phantom pains and real eccentricities preventing us from coming in to work

it would be much more difficult and honest

to call in and say,

            “hey man, I just want to spend some time with her

            before we both go mad again –

            we’re both prolific with the whimsy of the twitching caprice”

and dawn, as always, travels here in shifts

punches in his time-card groggily each time

and I’ve traveled the New York trains before sunlight here myself

            it’s a straining subjection to sprightly, varicolored marauders and

            not enough strong coffee and            

            too many slurred, exotic words

            and, goddammit, I haven’t taken amphetamines in at least eight years

I understand his consternation, in other words

but then I manage waking up with her

and his efforts seem worthwhile

to cover us in light

or whatever lambency the drapes allow

a few rays to bury in her hair

she thus, so still, reminds me of when I was brightness

of breakfast time some years ago, of when I used to

eat raspberries and brown sugar blurring mauve beauty in a bowl

with a spoon impatient

in a little hand

foreordained to write these parallels

so sweetly while the time still lasts

———–

 


08 Apr

———–

———–

failed metamorphosis (from paper-weight to paper-weight)

 

“We’re lost, but we’re making good time!”

– Yogi Berra

 

to be quite honest,

a majority of my writing

is much the same –

it hits along the same tropes,

chronicling the same lies and exits,

the same conversational gambits,

the same pruriency and prescience,

the recollections sorrowfully unforgotten

matted melodies along the same detours

I’ve ridden through before

over and over again in the same bad-beat melancholy

always at the same pace

the mileometer on the dash says we’ve passed either a century

or a couple of happy hounds, a hundred miles each

they whine and spit bloody when the wind coils and clings

around the soul and starts to sing –

them too, the songs –

I’ve repeated them before as well,

a bar tab and a bottle will inevitably sync into the scene  

a cigarette or something else that burns

some sweet betrayal bewitching, the best there ever was

it was just a fit of good luck

maybe a fix

(my daddy used to be a bookie and was highly proficient at these things)

green eyes

a Catholic inside a jukebox

she took me to the cab

she took me in the cab

and I tipped the driver well

he had endured

and drove silently pretending

to follow the cricket match broadcast on the radio

I couldn’t take her panties off all the way,

but that’s another story for another time –

my point is, my dear shiny empty people –

it all repeats, and will again

and I with it

some New York skin

just getting old and tired and new and old again

there was an accident along the drive

two people died, the third labeled critical

I don’t know where they were buried

or what happened to the faulty miracle

or what they were talking about

            listening to right before…

my hands were calm

controlled

they moved her torso over me

circular motion, revolutions

I came before we made is past Morningside

I felt condemned to all this permanence

but we were home

her home, but still

we had arrived

I tipped the driver through his opened window

well over twenty percent, I do believe

lies and exits, yeah, it’s true

again, again, it seems

green eyes

blue eyes

gray eyes

what were they when they were forever

or singular

or final

I want to get there

finally

but it seems doubtful that I will

ignorance ain’t bliss

it is a willful murder

my old, cold kingdom for a fucking toothpick

and a way to do it

            to write it virginal, exposed

yet I repeat again

there’s no escape

it is the same

all same

green eyes and curly hair

ruffled by a long cab ride back to the river

———

Cigarette Burns (Part III)


03 Apr

————

————

“And for this imperfect immortality, what prices have been paid? How many livers, lungs, and veins? Shredded, polluted, shot? How many children deserted, family secrets betrayed, sordid trysts laid out for strangers to see? How many wives and husbands shoved to the side? How many ovens scorched with our hair? Gun barrels slid between our lips? Bathtubs slowly reddened by our blood and twisting rivers that drowned us? How many flawed pages burned in disgust and reduced to ashes? How many flawless moments observed from just a slight distance so that, later, we might reduce them to words? All with an unspoken prayer that these hard-won truths might outlast the brief years of our lies.”

                                                                                                  –    Kristopher Jansma

 

cigarette burn 03

 

it was written on her body

on her skin the city dreamt

a geography of delusional, cursory delight

a map where borders shed their dresses and no longer offered their consent

I ask her

– why are the ballet slippers hiding in the closet?

her branch drips off the arm of the divan

like it was a new season all of a sudden

and perhaps it was

(I don’t remember these prisons being free)

she answers

that they’re simply

waiting for Anaïs

I kissed her

and she was still cold

I said

– the book is nearly done

and I feel that it all was merely just a hash dream

standing on a train platform

only she and my phantom audience knows what I mean

marriage and a little Vera

born wet, we both wake up alone

but because, as a writer, I still read

for fear of being dubbed a hypocrite

I know all too well that

it was already

written on her body

and now I have nothing left to do

but have another glass of wine

in the midnight of lost children

 ————-

 

Hidden Miracles and a Lonely Dusk


09 Feb

———–

———–

The Writer Grows Frustrated and Decides to Have a Cigarette on the Balcony Despite the Cold February Night

 

released by the past

before it was my time

before I was quite ready

careful not to

drop ashes in your whiskey glass,

she said

each step must be a cautious one

because, like Jean, you are much too sweet to live;

you break far too easily

to not be deemed obsolete

The cigarette helps, the writer thinks

and the soft, remaining magic

of the oncoming morn over a poor neighborhood:

all of it unseen by the pulpy softcover on her bureau

because my magic is something different

because she walks naked for no one there right now

at least no one that I know

she,

the missing audience I write for,

Her –

the one with the capital ‘H’

and many, many masks

that she does not seem fit to hide from any

———-

Jack Tsoy Tumult

Morose Pontifications and Other Poetic Ramblings