Thursday, October 30, 2008

If you pretend nothing ever happened
Nothing ever happens

If you watch punditry at night
You’ll turn into a bitter person
With little ideas
And a heart full of hate
For anyone with bigger ones
Or everyone

What I say in Poetry is never important
If it were
I would say it in conversations
With my loved ones
Or my doctor or boss
But it’s never important
So I say it in poetry
So you only have to care
If you want to

i know all the names
of the ways i feel
like spirits conjured
by firelight

i've studied my palms
with strained eyes
in the halos of lamplight
every crevice, every line,
all their predictions

i know the dirt under the nailbeds intimately

i can understand the failures of the mirror

and the resonance of all things
hollow or hallowed

and sometimes i can sing like that
and sometimes i wish
i could sing like that

walked fast
chewed truth bare
carried everything
long hair
silver smile
maybe like heaven
maybe like a snake

to die
in a bath of movie credits
ceasing to exist
in any sense after
the next commercial break
with all the sins forgiven
and all the meaning
of 124 moments
framed perfect
by the plot

i clutch sarte and guatama
with that white knuckle desperation
cuz my job puts things in my head
and before
my eyes

souls are clean
till they muck 'round in the mud

virgins, baby, virgins

now we all wash our hands
the food service industry
for christ's sake
has god damn videos
'bout the proper way
to wash yr hands

in the end
it ain't germs we're tryin to kill
its souls
tryin to clean
and save
and bleach
and wash

make virgins, baby, virgins
out of trash and air

i remember
how she spat words
as knives
machine gun fast
each one with
punch and thrust

now she wears
her hair
and someone calls her

i remember
the scarves whe wore
and the wind that
caught their edges

i remember
that short haired
ahe loved unrequitably

and when she requested
99 red balloons
the german version
on vinyl

i practice dissolution
dropping spoonfuls of white
crystal sugar
into coffee abysses

trying to learn all the secrets
of the physical reactions
when a liquid absorbs

the art of a thing
changing state
and becoming one
with another

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

i been through beautiful wretched drunk high and discarded elegant intelligent marvelous excited new naked thrilling boring and revealing piss poor and rich girl relevant and mean whores, dames without out conscience and names without promise in a race to see just how fast we could find it, this missing old feeling boot marks on the ceiling, the scars and the cars the tattoos and the booze and the cheap lies and razor blades, hot tubes and cold fates, alone in a desert or at peace in her bedroom, shes out by the morning and giving no warning as to what i'll wake up as or where i was going, but the long bitter road, i've been down never ending, to find all this shit and a broad not pretending that every little word i say holds the meaning of all shes been longing for
cold nights spent scheming, some runaway train wreck bounding for anywhere but here with some company, drown me in cheap wine and drag me to bed, i think i fucked up love sugar, but i aint dead yet.

Monday, October 27, 2008

i busy myself with straightening
new skin all over me

he lingers in the vests of the dusk

traveling like an interval
the ready times, clutched by a 
far remembrance,

Saturday, October 25, 2008

all this economical strain,
I don't even feel it.
I'm back on an elementary
school schedule and all
that matters are state
holidays and the ways
I waste my time.

Monday, October 20, 2008

A Question.

If the pen is mightier than the sword, what does that make the keyboard?

*I just laughed alittle because I heard Sean Connery say the penis mightier in my head.

The Fall of St. Patrick

it wasn't the snakes that did it
and it wasn't the drinking
or the bar fights
it was probably his ego
each week standing in front
of a group of spoken word
slam type hotties
who tried to rap without
the music underneith
and I'm sure he slept
with one or two
or at least got really close
which led to the fall of
St. Patrick
a man we were so excited to see
whenever we thought of Jersey City
and its perpetual ride and
whatever its trying to become.

"Professor Baird, I want a taco"
and suddenly right at that moment
I want a taco too and ask the students
where to get tacos in Perth Amboy.
I give the students
an assignment and run across
the street to a taco hut.
I buy eightteen tacos, nine beef
nine chicken, and return with
three bags. We eat the tacos
and grade our work,
then I hand out a poem
about the body that was
given to me in my Masters Class
but I knew my reading students
could handle it.

It was about relationships
and the differnce between
a boy's wants and a woman's
needs and I felt it was something
we all could relate too.
We got personal and talked about
our own relationships and one student
who was soon to be married
and whether or not marriage worked.

"Professor Baird..." says Stockton.
I gave all my students pet names
it helps me to remember them,
gives me a reason to remember them,
and its a lot more affectionate
that way and shows that I care.
"Professor Baird..." says Stockton.
He was called Stockton because
he lived on Stockton street and
I used to go to Stockton and he revealed one
day that he played piano and I used to play
piano at Stockton so it all worked out.
"Professor Baird..." says Stockton,
"...if their's anything I'm learning
from this class, its that poetry doesn't
have all the answers like I thought
it did, but answers questions one
at a time."
If tacos fuel lines like that
they'll get tacos every class
till December and they'll
all get A's even the ones
that don't show up.

Markers in Your Life

Lakehurst Navy Base, the gas station with cheap gas, the middle school, Ridgeway Liquors, the red light he drove through...

Some of the things my grandfather mentally checks off when I drive him home every holiday and birthday. A list to make the ride seem shorter, I guess, or maybe something to fill in the silence between me and a ninety year old man with his pride in running that red light and making it one year to the next.

I usually grab the blade
of the sword before it hits
me. It slices right through
my hand which makes me
happy that I use
computers to write
one fingertip at a time.
Usually I don't know
the guy with the sword
sometimes its my friends
but only because I provoke them

Walking the Trail

Sometimes they just come with no control
the form comes easily
as you skip this line
and skip that line,
and the ending brings you back
to the beginning.
but sometimes they don't come
sometimes you have to make them come
use your mother's maiden name
for a pen name
not only because it sounds
more literary
but because we all have father issues
that need to be dealt with
at some point.
Sometimes you have to make them come
taking the grown over trail from the 2 mile
path I walk everyday after lunch
finding a dead end or a stream to cross.
Sometimes they just come
and sometimes you have to walk the trail
and find the dead end yourself.


John had been driving for hours. He rubbed the dryness from his eyes and took the next exit off the Parkway. His stomach rumbled, trying to digest a meal that wasn't there. South Jersey was eerily empty in the fall months and he drove down the empty highway for some time until he saw a diner. The parking lot was almost as empty as the highway, only a few cars pulled up near the entrance. He parked on the side closest to the highway and walked in.

Inside the diner it was a nice change to the cold wind outside. The regular late night crowd that can be found in any all-night diner were huddled in booths that lined the walls. John took a seat at the empty counter as he was greeted by the waitress.

"Hi. Menu?"
She handed him a menu ", anything to drink?"
"Coffee please."
She poured him a coffee, placed it in front of him and walked away.

John took a quick peek at her ass as she hurried to refill coffees and take orders at her other tables. She was too skinny, he liked his girls alittle chubbier. John decided righ then he would only tip her fifteen percent instead of his usual twenty and went back to looking at his menu.

The waitress returned shortly, flipping the pages of her order pad and blowing a piece of hair out of her face.
"Ready to order?"
"Yeah, I'll take two eggs over easy with salsa on the side. Do you have hot sauce?"
"Yes, that on the side as well?"
"Yeah, and lemme' get white toast and homefries with that. That's it. Thanks."
The waitress scribbled quickly, never looking up from her pad ", refill on the coffee?"

She grabbed the coffee pot and refilled his cup before rushing into the kitchen to place his order. John sipped his coffee and took a look at his cell phone. It was quarter to three in the morning. He rubbed his eyes again and stretched back in his barstool. A guy with a dirty hooded sweatshirt walked in and sat at the opposite end of the counter. He seemed nervous as he sat, shaking his leg, his hands buried in the pockets of his sweatshirt. The waitress walked back out of the kitchen and over to the guy. John overheard him order a coffee.

Soon, the waitress brought John's food, refilled his coffee and hurried off again. Something about the guy at the other end of the counter bothered John. He didn't like the way he looked, so nervous. John ate his food, glancing over at the guy indiscreetly every once in a while, keeping an eye on him. Finally, the guy threw some money on the counter and quickly walked out. John laughed to himself, he couldn't believe he had been worried about that guy holding up the place. John finished his cup of coffee as the waitress walked up, scribbling in her pad.

"Anything else?"
"Just the check, thanks."

She finished scribbling and tore the check from the pad, placing it face down on the counter ", have a nice night." With that she walked away again. John checked the time on his cell phone. It was three fourty. He needed to get to work. He left the money on the table, fifteen percent tip included and walked out, jingling his keys in his hands as he walked around to the side of the building. The guy that had been sitting at the other end of the bar was now squatting on the curb at the side of the diner.

"Ah fuck" John thought ", this guy's gonna' want money."

John had to walk past him to get to his car, so he kept his head up as he walked, pretending not to see the guy. As John pasased behind him, he felt the guy turn and look up at him.

"Hey mister?"
In that moment, John hated him. He turned around and looked.
"Hey, do you think you could just give me a ride a couple miles down the road? It's freezing and I'm out of cash."

John looked up at the brick wall. No windows to save him. He tried to think of an excuse as he looked around the empty diner parking lot but found nothing. It would be easier just to take the guy than to argue with him.

"Yeah. Fine. Let's go, I've got work to do."
"Thanks so much, Mister."
The guy quickly got up and walked over to John's car. John unlocked his door, got in and unlocked the passenger door from the inside. The guy got in.
"Thanks again, sir."

Now that John could get a good look at him, he realized the guy was just a kid. He looked to be in his late twenties.

"Yeah, no problem kid. Where am I going?"
"Just take a left out of here, you'll see MacIntyre's Pub up on the right. You can just drop me there. I live right near there."
"OK. You in some kind of trouble or something?"
"No. Nothing like that. Just out of cash and it's really cold."
"Allright. How long am I gonna' be driving? Be honest, now."
"Fifteen, Twenty minutes maybe."

John huffed and turned out onto the road. He drove for about twenty five minutes before the kid spoke up ", it's coming up on the right. Right over here."

John pulled into the empty parking lot. The lot was spooky, all the lights were out and the bar employees were long gone. It was ten after four. It would still be a few hours until the sun came up. The only lights in the parking lot were John's headlights. John parked the car.

" Thanks again, mister. " The kid grabbed a small book out of his bookbag and handed it to John.
" What's this, kid? "
" Just a 'thank you'. "

John looked down at the book. 'ARE YOU SAVED?' stared up at him from the cover. Something about it lit a fire inside John. He got out of the car as the kid closed the passenger door.

"Hey kid, hold on. Could you move something from my trunk into my backseat for me? I would do it but my back."

John grabbed the keys from the ignition and handed them to the kid. John moved out of the kid's way so he could open the trunk. He put the key in the trunk lock and opened it. The kid stared down at the trunk and gasped. John squeezed one round off into the back of the kid's head. The kid made a small yelping sound as he slumped into the trunk. John put his gun back into its holster and quickly shoved the kid's legs into the trunk. John closed the trunk and looked around briefly, making sure no one was around before getting back into the car.

John got back onto the highway. It was about four thirty, now; just enough time to bury two bodies and get home as the sun came up. John huffed, he hated working nights.

This city will render you
in the grays it knows
unless you know better

and we know better.
Buildings betray themselves.
They leak sweetness all day.

We take to pavement and listen,
living on gristle
and great ideas

Sunday, October 19, 2008

a work in progress

We burned acres of freedom to make way for warehouse stores.
We gave up independence for a few more choices at the market.
We lost a soul and a backbone to erect steel and glass monuments to the dollar.
Now a sickness grows deep in my belly having been born into this world of greed
able only to hear and dream of the beauty that was here before the fall of idealism
and knowing that my daughter will have to take my word for it
that once upon a time men were strong standing side by side and there was little reason to walk on each others backs.

Friday, October 17, 2008

I don't give a shit about this Wednesday.
Or next Wednesday or the day after
Or before it. I miss knowing what color the day is.

Do what you will with your youth.
Jayden thinks everything is green.
I agree.

Are we off the goddamn island yet?

"drunken Publisher after a birthday bonfire, Thanks, Jackie"

Thursday, October 16, 2008

lat time around
was an officer
in the un air force

today, just drunk
disliking police
and alwys
wanting to call
the moroccan embassy

but what will always
stick with me
is that so sharp
sound that
when he snapped
his fingers

i've sat in nowhere towns

knowing in the white light
of the great blind faiths

shinning people were performing
brilliant miracles
outrageous acts
of balance and daring

but now in this light of a mythical city
i can see
that all people
only shine
and miracles
at random in the night

up on the bridge
she explains
stories of the city's ghost
but the words get drown out
thinking of stealing
kisses in the skyline

...always did have a thing
for williamsberg girls

been wanderin loose footed
streets of a great city
with ferenghetti
talkin in my head
'bout his isea of miss subway and the
brooklyn bridge
and saw 'em
in the new york night
older now
after the dream had

there was a coney island
of my mind too
there was a whole new york
of my mind
brimming with
deadbeat saints
and street corner
but maybe
that was a new york of another yime
or of another world
cuz this is one
of drunk barrooms
and gorgeous

1st Bonfire of the season

It's Publisher's birthday!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

the soles of my boots are worn.
dirt and rocks seep inside,
underneath my feet.
there's no traction
walking along pavement;
yet, i always manage to get across
without falling.

by light of sick machines
we count flowers
admonish ourselves

Me and the Moon

it's me and the moon
and here I am
looking up
at these stars again
thinkin' bout all those
dark figures
movin' all
secret and holy
like they're protecting
some unseen treasure
in New Brunswick basements

and then
all those times
caught in hailstorms
or meteor showers
cloud cover
and thunderbolts
knowin you were there
protecting us from
places unkept
devoid of that secret
treasure of night

it was you
showin' us where
to hang our hat
rest our heads
when to quit
and when to
drive it all home

kept me stirrin'
and crazy
when you got all full
like I was protecting you
for once
from exploding
out and off
stormin' their shores and
killin' them all

in the end
I know it'll come
right down to
me verse you

you'll bathe me
in stars and maybe
a lightning flash or two
and go on livin' here
as I go
discoverin' new roads
in another place

ha, i just got here
leave a couple lights out so i know which ones home
i got a bone to pick with all or none
im alone a twisted mess my dear
but at least we're on the same page

you had me at goodbye

"you want an explanation?", he screamed as she trailed off into the empty frigid would be romance of another wise pale evening. "hi kids, this is a fairy tale we live in. i'm Pinnocchio the dwarves are railing snow white on a mattress behind the 7-11. truthfully theres a yule log channel and a trees that dont need water in every living room this side of the mason dixon, but i'm traveling to the shit grove where they grow elliquent ignorance and package it all in the back of a museum dedicated to the finest store bought mass produced garbage of the 21 century..."

to which she replied,

"take me, i'm yours

on seeing a beard in a convenience store

I threw open the double door
and growled "it's Tuesday"
and everyone inside the store
put down their distractions for a moment
and looked at me because
it was Tuesday,
but that's not the kind of thing you say
in polite company

and you, you looked at home
in the florescent lighting
seeping into yr bones.
the daily, ever present
ebb and flow of coffee and
cigarettes and the tides
and the moon
and new newspapers
replacing the old
creating the illusion of
time passing, but in yr veins
it's the same, and when the
register rings up

I slid dollars across the counter,
like a piston in mid-fire,
and yeah, it was Tuesday, and I wanted
to leave my ID there when
I walked out,
make a clean break of it all,
of all the Tuesdays
waiting for the light to change,
for the rustle of newspaper,
for the condensation to drown us all,

but instead we leave like bandits
who forgot to get off with
anything but the coffee
in our cups

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


by sam floT

(I’m disassociating
Mind place and person and)

I’m the figure you see
From a distance
On top of a hill
Next to a small cluster
Of small trees

Just a silhouette
Ambiguous and indirect inside

(If my eyes blink it changes)


I’m hurtling through
A tunnel dark
All arrows trying to see
Trying to understand
What my vehicle is

What’s taking me there?

(If my eyes blink it changes)

I’m back on
What feels like and looks like
A California rolling hillside
No trees but I’m in a forest
Of windmill turbines
Duplicated repetitions
Placed equidistant from or to
Each other

(If my eyes blink it changes)


I’m on the ocean now
Not gently
As if down a placid river
But a constant rag doll
Thrown down and up and all around
By the sway of the inevitable
Ocean consistent

Always in conveyance of the metaphor
Up and down
Up an down
The sway of the inevitable ocean consistent

(If my eyes blink it changes)

I’m back on the hilltop
I’m back in the tunnel
I’m in a windmill forest
I’m floating, not gently on the Ocean

Bounced around and wondering
Bounced around and wondering

Windmill forest
Floating, not gently on the Ocean

Bounced around and wondering
Bounced around an wondering


Deliver the Sun

Deliver the Sun
by sam floT

I see the sun galloping on clouds
Beyond the neighbor’s mossy rain-stained rooftop
Breaking through the distance
Nowhere near me, but looming, I see the sun
I long to feel it’s warmth after a cold dreary day

Birds chirp despite it all and it will come
I know it will be here
As I anticipate its arrival
A lone bird flies across my view
Unable to wait, flying to the sun
I am jealous at his seeming insistence

Seek and find he says
Do not seek and still find, I say

It works both ways, he replied

Monday, October 13, 2008

Swan Reunion

In the process of moving a year ago, I had trouble eliminating stuff. My ex told me that I have a problem with letting go.

Yes, I'm a pack rat.
Yes, I'm nostalgic.

And when I listen to that damn awful Oasis album with the song, "Wonderwall" on it, I'm always gonna think of winter '96 with warm fuzzy feelings.

It's October now, and I'm gonna see you this weekend.

A year ago, we wanted to carve pumpkins, but we dressed up "mod" and ended up at a Halloween party drinkin' gin all night. We sang that awful 90's song driving home and vowed that it would never leave the car.

It never left the car, but I still remember.

And now here we are, doing our thing-

You, in PA
Me, in NJ

but I still kept you around.
And I'm gonna see you this weekend.

March 14, 1997

Saving pomp
A book

A memory
of pall
A memory
A cold memory

The Rutgers computer lab stinks on ice.

An Apology of Sorts

what I need from you
is a realization
that it's not all lies

I'm a hopeless romantic first
I'm a drunk
and afterwards
I write it all down

I need you
to sort through
the drunken rants
the embelishments
and bold confessions

no one said
it was easy to know
a romantic drunk
a lieing writer

we are phantoms falling down
but we make great lovers

God is an Ant

I think about ants
going through their day
not bothering to
or even think about
explaining themselves to me
and to an ant
I am God
I am omnipitent
I am the creator
I am the destroyer

I like to think about
changing an ants life
taking him from his dull surroundings
and sending him on an adventure
on a leaf raft

I imagine him
cruising down the gutter
the cliffs of the curb on one side
and wide open
rocky desert on the other

it must be amazing

I guess
what I'm saying is
there is always
someone bigger than you
there is someone bigger than them

I am a God to an ant
I am an ant to a God
God is an ant to an ant

I like to think about ants

A Dream

Autumn is here
and I want to take you
on long walks
to watch leaves change
and fall off

later on
I could rub your arms
as you shiver
your teeth chattering
watching our breath
fog the air between us
and disappear

you can tell me
how crazy the world is
I'll reassure you
that people are terrible
we're all fucked
and we'll get through it
one perfect day at a time
in a shitty world

You Like Pizza

I poured it all over the table
these guts
this blood
whiskey fueled
barroom confessions
and you stayed
swayin' and strong
still playin' the game
showin' no cards
and keepin' the deck

all my words were poetry
taken from the bottom of the glass
but they were real
and it was all true

I just want to know you

you and me
we're a part of this
holy dance
that's been goin'
on and on
for centuries

your words
they don't cut
like razors
more like
teeth scrapin
across my skin

Sunday, October 12, 2008

there are so many old timers
but only one stranger

I'm very excited on hitting the 2000 mark post on Walking English, it's like when yer car hits 200,000 miles

your right, waves do get smaller
but I didn't think of them as getting
smaller but just leveling out.
Leveling out to the point where
it reaches childrens ankles
except...they can still feel the pull
of the tide trying to bring them
back in. And then a new wave comes,
rises to a point and again levels out.
Without all that pulling back, and rising up,
and leveling out, without all that movement,
we'd only be lakes about to dry up if it wasn't
for the mountain springs that surround us.
Our celebrations are movements and the tide
is pulling back out leaving shells and rocks
that will be pulled out by other waves.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

In elementary school there were two types of kids,
you were either a busser or you were a walker.
I was a busser.
I wanted to be a walker because they stayed late
after school and it wasn't till years later
that I found out it was only 10 or 15 minutes more
so the buses could have time to leave.

Review of The Idiom from the guy at the Racontour

I never actually read a copy of The Idiom
but I like what you do
so its one of those unconditional loves....I'm like your dog

When my sister sees people walking on the road
in all black at night
she gets angry wondering where
he's going, what brought him there
to the middle of nowhere in Jackson.
We're surrounded by cranberry bogs.
Perhaps he's picking cranberries
at 2:14 in the morning.
It made sense to me.
He may have been the youngest
writer for some well known
magazine for all I know,
ran for some government position
to mess with the numbers.
All I know was driving down
Cedars Bridge Road
at 2:17 in the morning
was that I really
wanted some cranberries.

Lines from "The Prelude"

When the Earth is all before me,
and all these beginnings and happenings take over

I look about and the guide I choose
be nothing more than a wandering cloud

And with that I am calm
Thank you, Wordsworth
Thank you, Milton

and with that I remember predictions of cowboys
walking into bars, because Mariachi bands

are so rare in these parts and all those miracles we create
known or unknown, seen or unseen are when we are the strongest

Yet, in weakness we create distinctions, then
deem that our puny boundaries are things

which we perceive, and not which we have made.

I love it when the Earth is all before me

Friday, October 10, 2008

poetry is easy.
it's all about when to keep writing
and when to go to sleep.

everything else is awful.

Alice told me I am a mirror for madmen
I was twenty years old,
eating and drinking,
growing and shrinking

I need you to leave me
Alice said so

from the middles of bridges
the city is finite,
and still

from the insides of cities
the city is still

my insides keep asking for
another city

a different strife

Everythings literal even when critical
times call for metaphors and lines
of iambic pentameter

Kundera says that
seeing is limited
by two borders:
strong light,
which blinds,
and total darkness.
My shoes used to be dark
now they are light.
They are white
and bright, stand out
especially with khakis
and the red paint
at the tip can be seen
from gas stations
that shut down
from art tours.
It's a lot easier now
going from darkness
to the blinding light.

The Story of Where and When Time Met Space

The Story of Where and When
Time Met Space
by Sam Flot

He said:

This trail we’re taking is a circle
If we start at the end
We can reflect on the grove in the middle
We can see the coast near the beginning
Which is our end

She said:

If we start at a point
Unforgiving transporting
The real evidence we find
Is life is supporting and
Gives us no warning
No flags to indicate which way to go
Arrows point everywhere, but, ummmm…

Now I get it
It takes me a minute sometimes
We’ve been waiting for you
Where ya been?
You must be Time?
So nice to meet you
Everyone ‘round here calls me Space

He said:

Subverted contorted
Fast down or slowed up

I’m waiting for no one
I’m on nobody’s side
I must say the pleasure’s all mine
This time

She said:

Contracted or reported
All close tight or spread out
My frontier is the air
And I like mine clear

Have we been here before?
Have we met?

Cause it seems to me
Déjà vu or fantasy, previously
We’ve had some sort of intersect

He said:

I am fastidious
Slow, not pretentious
I’m exacting and yet I forgive
My heart beats metronome rhythm

I heal all wounds
I’m wasting
I’m short
I’m money!
She said:

I am undefined and infinite
Instant and unknown
I provide taste in music
Emphasis on timing
Room to just breathe
Or to imagine
Unparalleled lands of promise
Not sands falling through a glass figure

He said:

Our meeting was sanctioned
The day they invented
Anything thought to be measured

She said:

They told me you’d be here
I’ve waited everywhere
Finally the moment is here

He said:

Space you’re so beautiful
So soulful and endless
So open and calm like a breeze

Space you surround me

I can’t find a place
Where I don’t want to be where you are

She said:

Time you keep talking
Ticking not stopping
Just stop for a minute and listen

Let’s stop all the thinking
React without shrinking
Away from this light we create

He said:

My heart is standing
On my head undemanding
Hoping you’ll give me some room

She said:

Step inside, Time
I’ve got nothing but room
For your vast and infinite mind


I think that we’ll find
The beginning was fine
Not yours, not mine

For right now
We may meet again Space
Somewhere in the very near future
6.22.oh-ate fLOT

Thursday, October 09, 2008

The Math I Teach in English Class

Maybe it's not just the evolution and execution of things that I like
but perhaps some distance and time ratio that really matters.
I'm not talking about flux capacitors or my inabilities to balance
while hanging off guardrails, but wanting to be in the city
instead of watching it from a park.

I haven't been in a city for a few weeks and like camping
when I haven't been there for a while, I miss it and while
camping I want to be anywhere else but in the woods.

Although I do like the view of the city while driving
over bridges towards tunnels and that's a pretty complex
math equation. Something like the amount of time (T)
you are traveling towards a city
multiplied by the distance you are from the city (D)
equals the amount of pleasure you experience (P) while
viewing the skyline:

T x D = P

We didn't even consider all the factors that might affect
this equation: the traffic, the weather, (its always the weather)
the right song from the radio because you Ipod knows you so well
it knows what to play when put on random.

All these issues just to get some pleasure from a skyline
for a city I'll never get to because I'm stuck on this bridge
and the tunnel is all the way over there.

my nerves uproot me every day.
i am always starving.

sing to me
and keep me singing.

what we have to offer are
notebooks of sound
the strange ways we love and
the ways we love
the strange

we make light of day and
make the day
we are faith

and proof
that, after having lost faith,
life continues

we soak up consequence, defy,
amble, and rail

we are invaluable


I'm sorry I write this shit
I'm sorry you choose to read it
I never apologize
without real incentive
I'm ready to quit
When you're ready to tell me to
I have no problem giving up on dreams
there's no secret
as to what keeps me going
there's no spiritual fulfillment
in this asshole's motive
it's simply a nervous compulsion
to make somebody hear me

On Scott Street

as she walks shouting behind her
waving her left hand
conducting a sidewalk ghetto symphony
her high heels sound monstrous
ready to shatter the concrete
with her swift power steps
trampling childhood
trampling innocence
I think she's some kinda spanish
though it's dark
so I take hints from her motion
her choice of word
bilingual catty exclamation
I'm in the background
hoping she stays so bold
hoping it never breaks her
as her heels echo from the dark
and she's found something better


Tomorrow is 10/10.
You know what that means, kids.
Toms River Diner

Do it, kids!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

do it, no fee

Poetry Chapbook CompetitionThe Center for Book Arts invites submissions for its annual Poetry Chapbook Competition. The winning manuscript will be chosen in April 2008 and will be awarded with the publication of a beautifully designed, letterpress-printed, limited-edition chapbook printed and bound by artists at the Center for Book Arts. The edition is limited to 100 signed and numbered copies, ten of which are reserved for the author and the remainder of which will be offered for sale through the Center. The winning poet will also receive a cash award of $500 and a $500 honorarium for a reading, to be held at The Center in the fall of 2008. Visit The Center For Book Arts for more information.

Deadline: December 1

When bulldozers work, I watch from the hood of my car.
I also like the bones of a building, a mound of sand before
the shape. When I climb mountains all I see are more mountains.
I like earthquakes, I like tidal waves,the destruction and construction
of things. All that nostalgias for has been's and people
that can't forget but the rivers are flowing and eroding cliffs
and my friend Mike Rice is right, the one's that are never finished
are great because they

an entire age is
lost on you, and

you stand against cities
oblivious to beginnings

i saw yr ghost
as i slipped into coast
in neutral
down the back side
of the rockies
you were mad grin
tappin and howlin
in the jazz of truck tires
no engine noise
just the wanting eyes of gravity and mass

imagine a whole planet
pullin yr soul
to its heart

this woman
and sitting outside
the jersey city PATH
will always be
last week's stripper
to old in the face
for the stage
and mixed blessing of neon

but still with hips
ready to dance
from my pockets
as she leaned
full into that poorly
placed mirrored column

and now that same woman
in my mind and brazillian
her face aged
for jersey city afternoon
has my thoughts
for the shape of her hips
and the cut of her lengerie
and my fingers' memory
for dollars from my pockets

my ex-girlfriend, Jessica use to tell me i was amazing
she was usually talking about my drinking

but i wanna be amazing

i wanna be the lyrics to the chorus
of Amazing fuckin Grace

Kerouac talked about his friends as saints
i want a halo
bright as the sun
pressure and heat
transforming into light
in black holy space
fusion fusion fusion

and i want to be ice cold
damn it Outcast
i want to be ice cold while i burn

i want to grow up to be
james dean's sideburns
the updraft in Marilyn's dress
form fitting and rugged Levis
Marlon Brando's Marlboro Reds
Chuck Berry's guitar riffs
and John Wayne's cowboy hat
all dusty from the trail

i want to be sepiatone, black and white, and technicolor
simultaneously broadcast on three screens

i want to be mother theresa's rosary full of grace
as she doubts in the night
ghandi's peace, hannibal's elephants, MacArthur's war

i wanna be john lennons sunglasses, and bob dylan's words


while we all eat bread and fish
and drink wine
in the company of Lazarus

i want to sing, dance, and screw
like i breath
natural and out of necessity

i wanna be amazing

Monday, October 06, 2008

You drink of reds
and leave me

You drink of reds
leave earth

The wake of daydreams
consumes you

Circle your birth and
come back to me

Those songs are not yours
you are not an astronaut

You are not an astronaut

I read Whitman loud
at a festival
and i realize how beautiful
it is to be reading him outloud.
i want to practice this
in my basement,
perfect my impression
or at least what I feel my impression
of what Whitman sounded like
in long branch
soon i will sellout
and sound like an impression of my impression
of what Walt sounds like
but that maybe what poetry is all about.

I like girls who dance with trees
but they always seem
so illegally young

there is a power
in words
only because of that
simple and overused
concept of language

"I think over a matter of 30 or 40 years of writing the mask comes closer to looking like the face and the face comes closer to looking like the mask, so that finally the person you want to be isn't much different from the person you are"

Richard Hugo

Fuck yeah, Philippe Petit

Philippe Petits on the radio
talking about his high wire
stunt across the twin towers
and i regret calling it a stunt
after hearing him talk about
his art of trapeze.
He talks about learning it on
his own, not growing up in
the circus or even having
a trampoline in his yard

When asked 'why?' Phil
answers, explaining,
that it is the same reason
why a painter paints,
he does not know why
but wakes up in the morning
and must paint.

It seems the more entertaining
something is, the less artistic
it becomes and that's sad
because a man on an island
who draws a picture in the sand
is only doing it because he is lonely.

When Petite walked the clothesline
in his backyard it was for him
but when he climbed those towers
it was for everyone else
and that makes it something
more than therapy.

I forget a poem immediatley after reading
or hearing it
I can't help it
Even though I do like it


Sometimes I don't know why I like it
Most don't read it
for the fear they may be
missing something
and most don't write it
for they fear someone
will miss something

Most times I don't understand it
Sometimes I only like the way
it sounds when read aloud
or the shape it makes
on the page from a distance
where i can't even see the words

just a line may move me
and the rest of the poem
may not even matter

I lost many a good lines
in the heat of a dryer vent
which is the downfal to

Those slam poets always trying
to shock and awe the other writers
a beginning writer I was like that too
but now I realize its better
to shock myself with a good line
that I never thought
would have come out of me

Nasa on the Ground and Astronauts in Space

The astronauts in space are jealous of those Nasa Guys in the control room for their mathematical and organized ways and vice-versa

Although Nasa knows exactly what's right in front of them, the Astronauts can see forever into space, both beings would collapse if in the other situation

Astronauts paint the Hubble Telescope every 2 years which improves our ability to see things clearer, Nasa writes down the correct amount of paint to use and figures out the exact time to paint otherwise the sun would melt the paint over the lens and everything would blur

The sun is Nasa's greatest enemy as is the moon to the astronauts. They both work really hard to conquer their enemies.

Astronauts list to very loud music in those helmets Nasa can sometimes hear it over their radios but choose to have no control over such matters

The weather is important everywhere but in space only meteor showers mean anything. Past conditions are studied in order to find out bad weather reports

Nasa confesses alot of things to the public: its mistakes, its achievements, its discoveries. Astronauts bask in their own Glory.

Without Astronauts, Nasa would just look at the stars. Without Nasa, Astronauts would never know how to get there

For all the Beards in Bars, Bookstores, and Diners

A beard is never just a beard for me
It always seemed to mean
a little more than just some facial hair.
People with beards know what they are doing.
Out of control beards or neatly trimmed both work for me
Beards in bars
Beards in Bookstores
Beards in Diners
have all changed my life.

aspects accomidate all of art.
portray the physical and emotional.
being of entertainment and pleasure.
I know no boundries, limitations, or rules.
I use the best of my abilities in any situation.
I am a casualty.

My disapoointment with camping
doesn't only come when nothing happens
but realizing that beforehand I expected
something to happen

The Real Things I Prayed For

On Sunday mornings I would creep into your room
moving the door slow enough to prevent it from creaking
and waking you up. I would crawl under the side of your bed
and flick the switch on the alarm clock to OFF knowing
you would then sleep late, so you couldn't drive me to CCD or church.
Unless it was a major turning point in our religious career
a confirmation or first communion, our teacher would discuss
the greater things in life to our all male class, like football or baseball
or any sport in which we relied heavily on God.
It was easier to convince you not to bring me to CCD if I were already late.
I'd wait quietly in my room, a good half hour after class already began.
I now think this may have been the beginning of my reading habit.
When the time seemed right and you couldn't possibly shower
in time for church, I'd begin watching cartoons loud enough
for you to wake up, panic over the time, and get me
some of those jelly donuts I loved so much every Sunday morning.

Richard Hugo will have to wait

Richard Hugo will have to wait till
at least my mid thirties
when he talks of trout and "eating
eggs of salmon
that run in the river of his ear"
I just don't get it
but damn it I know it sounds
good and i know something
is there
even if its
not here now

His letters are just that,
only letters
and his dreams
are just that
only dreams

Maybe after I drive to Seattle
to get his 2 cd set, they they will
be more than dreams
more than letters
cause like everyone
Hugo has something in his eyes
in his face
and will do
anything to live.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

the eye, time,
light, age,
wring, hang, and stand
beneath them

weave air into
a home for me

ail as you will.

weigh aches and
dispatch them

I have no remorse.
This time may wring

and struggle, but
it is utterly essential,

this intermittent hand that
clambers and wanes

soon to be erased

monster in a theatre of disease if you please scrape the vomit from the corners and im climbing to the street
all i wanted was to see
never wanted it to be
never turning me to you
never turning you to me
youre so fucking perfect its disgusting
eating aphids under tree
arachnid call girl history
shes always once and never again the time i saw that face pretend it wasnt you and i was somewhere else

sure do miss the marks

televisions making threats again
its getting so you cant believe your self
in a cold afternoon, we'll be singing goodbye precious
buried alive, at least this time, but then again its getting harder to suspend
this little dream
you called again
to satisfy the urge
and push a litttle closer to the edge

im not alone in this she said
you've got the others in your head
we'll make it right we'll break your focus
just destroy the world and watch as no one still would notice
the room in flames just hear complaints
its getting so you can enjoy a decent cup of sorrow

no winds of change
or great demise
could keep the dogs from chasing
down the ones too quick to cry
with leather skin and colder eyes
i could have called you love
and smiled as i watch it die


faceless crowded nothing nowhere
making sense played on accordian
trumpets all go deaf with pleasure
i saw the blue balled matchstick maker
im here so long its feeding time
im sleeping through my dreams to find it
drowning in succession with my favorite piece of furniture

when you die im taking all your sounds
make an album of the resturant we burn in homage to the starving artists working in the back
thesres seagul shit outsite the penthouse at least thats what she said to me the grass is dying for a glass of empathetic proticol
recite the inverse telegram scream over the damn house of snooze band
history repeats another mistake when she finds you hollowed out

broken little finger

get a gun take a message
im in pieces on your floor
fall apart throw a fit
cast aspursions
i'll get use to it
im nothing if not everything
you'd kill your self to be
touch me taste me feel my cold
im inside your empty promises
a broken little finger

cut too deep and break my ash tray
fast asleep behind the wheel
my eyes make sense of no clear visions
i just hate to see it smile


left town one cigarette and whiskey belly south bound
tomorrows indecision breaks apart the mundane skyline
cant find an open window so i'll be sleeping on my feet again
prosthetic happiness and poems about the wasted kind

dont seem to mind the downfall
tragic smiles plastic memories
got a foot in doors
at least you cant take what i will not give
the glass that stretches on
four miles without an imperfection
lies to you in kind dear friend
theres nothing left to do but burn the skys