Monday, March 30, 2009

NJ Turnpike Poem

the Pulaski Skyway rises
in all its black steel glory
and Elizabeth Seaport
stinks on the horizon
as Newark Airport
passes by in a blur
of jet fuel and runway lights

I'm missing home, tonight.
I'm missing all my old haunts
the sounds of the city in my ears
lulling me to sleep at night

The road is all glass
reflecting headlights and taillights
shimmering red and white lights
on black pavement canvas

and it's here I realize
how beautiful all this ugly is
and it's here I realize
how perfect a bridge looks
through the night in the rain
and it's here I realize
I wanna be buried within view of
all these cargo ships and bridges
and the Pulaski Skyway
in all it's black steel and glory

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Upon Spending Time With God

when you start looking at God
and I mean really looking at him
spending late nights discussing
planetary alignments and time travel
singing karaoke; talking about women

you start to see
he's just like anyone else
he's got fears
he tells great stories
and sometimes
he really gets under your skin

it's important to try
to see this being
in this light always
remember him not as a great fire
or as the source of the wind

but remember him
in holy bar room
struggling to keep time
fucking up the words to "Shout"
he's just like anyone else
he's just like the rest of 'em

I Liked Congo Lights

people often forget that
poetry is an art form
I'm sure alot of critics
thought Pollack's paintings were chaos
they showed no artistic talent
but now they are revered
personally, I don't get it

but that's what I love about art
and so thats what I love about poetry
art is completely subjective
different people take away
different meanings

you might see this as
a poem about art
or a poem about
poetry as an art form
I might think this
as a love letter for
a dear friend
that just got a bad review

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

i was trying to paint a bad
painting of you
while you played
out of tune
late afternoon in June
and the sun beated down
on the blue walls
and you and i were burning
the paint splattered across the room
mixed in with the sweat
on our bodies
our movement
painted on the floor,
our bodies
sculpted into one another
and when we cooled down
we layed there,
in the haze of summer

Monday, March 23, 2009

return to sender

it was the most beautiful sunrise
that i've ever seen, that morning
at the end, that minute - i slept
shame, it was the precise minute you died
sometimes i feel my decision
is what put you in the ground
i've finally found what i'd been looking for
those answers i'd been praying for
your father told me how you spoke of me
all those plans for us
i wish i knew, i probably wouldn't have been so..
so blushing
his chest clutched my tears,
my hair, his
it was on the tip of your tongue
and only i could taste it
i thought it'd be a dream to feel
but now it will haunt me forever.
i fucking miss you.

amongst the drunkeness and skanking ska kids

you were a familiar face in another time...

we shook hands awkwardly,
like strangers,
meeting for the first time.

the karaoke dying down,
I snuck out to bum a
cigarette off my Senator shouting
obsenities while the
last train pulled away
somewhere nearby

the old-dirt cowboy stood grinning
in his sharp pressed shirt and stetson,
which hid his gleaming white hair

he was somehow floating
slightly above the ground,
full of dharma, saying to me
"What's important is the Joy


then he took a drag on his Marlboro, burning
it down to the filter, and inside
a whiskey drunk bodisattva
was singing for the lonely

You are
like the frost
dancing up
the window pane


The 15 Year Rule

Rolling Stone called it
"The 15 Year Rule",
that pop culture goes in
15 year cycles, once kids
have their own kids,
and those kids get older,
leaving their parents with
time and money
to get nostalgic

and now I'm stuck sitting
in a coffee house listing to
Hootie and the Blowfish
and remembering that a
wise man once said
"same as it ever was"

You Are Your Promised Land

we drank Black and Tans against
the old-forest night
like a lost tribe, without
toaster ovens or fix-a-flat
or the notion of instantaneous
and we moved slowly
on the down beat, and for
a moment I gave praise to
Jah who had delivered us
to Zion, looking down
from the mountain top,
the trees were towers and
the air was thin enough
that you could almost forget
it was even there

Saturday, March 21, 2009

This Dream's on Me

you're there with pretty red ribbons
tied to your loss and needs
you smile from across the bar
and plant a conversation's seeds
you lift yourself from the hardness
and your dreadful spiteful deeds
and I whisper to the bartender,
"The next dream's on me"

you stare into your glass
focused on empty lust and greed
scanning down the path
for a young strong worthy steed
but your picture's just the past
and your tears are why you bleed
and as you scrape your dusty pockets
the next dream's on me

and he pours another Collins glass
says, "this one's free"
and your eyes find me finally
and then you see
that your worries are just boundaries
where your mind and spirit meet
and I lift my glass deliberately
"this dream's on me"

Thursday, March 19, 2009

I Love You Like Brothers In Wartime

soldiers never lit three cigarettes
with one match
this was to keep the snipers
from drawing a bead on you and your brothers
taking you out softly
in the night

it's the same reason
behind packing your cigarettes
they light faster
keeping a soldier from
giving away his position
in the night

I never light three cigarettes
with the same match
it's bad luck
and I'm never sure
if there's a sniper waiting out there
in the night

35 West Chelsea

I miss my family tonight.

I remember driving home
after a full day's work at the supply yard
my whole body aching
my mind numb
my hair matted from the heat and
the soot from the warehouse
so black
I would sweat it out at night

I'd park the car in my driveway
and maybe have a smoke on the back porch
then I'd walk inside
to the chaos of a newborn
or the screaming
from the vacuum

it was easy
it came naturally
wake up, work,
be happy
and there were hard days
there were arguments
but there was always
my bed and my woman
as my son slept sound
in the room we painted for him
in the crib that we bought and we built
in the home that we made there

I miss my family tonight.

as I carry my son to a new bed
that sits at the foot of
my new bed
without my woman
without the same sweet summer breeze
that smelled of the ocean

I miss my family tonight.

I miss domesticated life
I miss being asleep at midnight
I miss my 6 AM alarm clock
the snooze button
and eggs on Sunday morning

I miss my family tonight.

Soon, I'll buy a new bed
I'll have a woman to share it with
I'll paint my sons new room
build him another bed
fall asleep at midnight
hit the snooze on the 6 AM alarm
I'll eat eggs on Sunday morning
and it'll be OK
it's just tonight,

I miss my family tonight.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Three poems about the moon

Sapphic Lights

Reflecting light back to the moon
And broadcasting our girlish love
The moon and I

She can be so far away
And hold me with intimacy still
I swell as she swells and wane as well
With her and only her

Giants in the sky

The sun will burn and blister
And torture the sky with fire
But the moon is a milk sacrifice
Who cools and stirs the mystery

Unrefined is better

Shadows cast from moonlight
Hide the sweetest secrets

Only the truly curious
The naïve and raw
Have the power to unravel

“Damn the refined”
The shadows, they whisper
Just like their mother the moon

There is no need to be polished
You cannot out shine the moon

Friday, March 13, 2009

two beers some coffee and a few miles in

crazy, i dont think i've felt this way in a while, im sure that in any place it all keeps going on when your not looking or thinking or reading a book, lighting a match licking a stamp, the wonderful the beautiful the endless and the dream...i keep looking back at all of you thinking such treasures of sking and backbone and mind, my collection of intellect old new borrowed and often blue what with winter coming and going so freely these days...look at life and the passing of time and place and wind...wind... so i'm tragic and beautiful and a combonation of things we taught each other and promised never to remember, i dig all this future we might actually get to....woke up cold shaddow and sun whisper through cracked blinds and old familliar windows, steal a glimpse again of freedom to choose and to right and to left and to nowhere fast but often somewhere slow and steady i supose, got a dream and in it some players and pawns and crooks rooks and fiends with perfect tales and ombiance and maybe in a nother but this ones got a full dance card ...sample night and day and coffee stain and swirling little disco lights for some other traveler, got a steak knife carving names in the back of my mind for stories you tell the grand kids where you leave in the blood and guts and take out the sexual revolution...i know i know, its been done... so a little bit of what i'm sending out to spin the time is always it and nothing seems to trap this like the down hill in your skivies...can you tell me whats around the bend there baby, can you peer over the horizon and fortell the everything to come? we'll love, if thats the way you see things, do me a favor, keep it to yourself...


a bottle of asprin and a ship setting sail for asphalt seas


Monday, March 09, 2009

I'm in line, watching people order meats. A gentleman paler than paper asks for an italian dish or concoction and includes a string of overpronounced italian condiments. The deli worker is not italian. He does not understand this man's accent.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

my home looked like
a mass of votives,
some, lit in prayer,
some, burnt out in silence,

it sits in an empty space
while the world collapses
around it
like Joe said
we're waiting for the flames
and I can feel my skin
slowly singe

sometimes all there is
is yellow and black,
fire and not fire,
everything that is pure in the world
and not everything that is not pure

Somehow the ocean
keeps lapping at the shore

somehow these pills
don't work the same anymore

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

truck stops
pepper the landscape here
along with factories
deserted buildings
turn of the century
warehouses and
storage facilities

all this industrial beauty
from when America
belonged to the working man
all these
degraded shipyards
speak of simpler times
speak of turning the dime
speak of America
when it still belonged to us

North Jersey Song

the planes align
like stars
over Newark
not sure if they're
pointing me ahead
or away
the skies stink
of the afterburn
and we're all just
waiting for the flames
to wash us away
and carry us home

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Springgarden Park

it's rank
and dank
mold and mildew
a festering moment
that you can't live through
that's why it's mine
maybe I can take it
I'll crack apart your strength
before you drop and break it
I find you in the starlight
you hug yourself and shiver
you never had the foresight
to guess what I'll deliver
and though the winter burns our fingers
we cheers two frosted beers
and your fears come out with frantic tears
but this could last for years

devil sun
and demon moon
the bulkhead of sense
that I plan to crash through

you're my pin-up girl
and I'm your 50's greaser
our film will go on
this is just the teaser

the double helix
the shot of Irish whiskey
same thing
the first drop of rain
on the back of your neck
your first handshake
with someone like me
same thing

you are the world
and I am the words
that make you seem beautiful

Sunday, March 01, 2009

The snow melted off the hood of my car... glacially.