Wednesday, June 29, 2011


The lightning a salvo of flashbulbs

across the bow

of an unknown celebrity.

The windows have an honest look

to their eyes

but they’re politely estranged

by the way I see things.

The rain talks

like a clock with logorhea

and the cars sizzle by

like eggs that have just been dropped

into the fat heat of a frying pan

like a wide-eyed vision of hell

though even in this

they insist upon looking at everything

sunny-side up.

The storm has spoken

though no one really knows

what was said.

Power I suppose.

Renewal and redemption.

Restoring the dynamic equilibrium

between polar opposites

by discharging pent-up emotions

like excessive baggage

unspent potential

too much voltage to bear

living so extremely at the edge of things

without jumping.

But it’s an iota subscript of a lie

in the footnote of a suicide

you have to learn

to flap like a book

before you can fly like an eagle.

Or swan-dive into the abyss

with a kiss on the cross

of the constellation Cygnus.

The cops are arresting

someone across the street.

And drunk women

dragging on soggy cigarettes

in the doorways of the bars

out for a girls’ night out on the town

as if they were supporting an issue

laugh like fire-hydrants with strep throat

at the insignificance of what’s going down

late on a Thursday night

in a small Ontario town

where the shepherds outnumber the sheep

and everyone’s looking for Little Bo Peep

as their perfect idea of a soul-mate.

And now the heat again

as the rain lets up

and the air is as damp and thick

as the arm of an old sofa

in an abandoned rooming house

with flesh-eating disease.

Raw mufflers replace the thunder

as they cruise the streets

looking for uncooked meat

to get into the air-conditioned ovens

of their cars

and go for a joy ride

up the slick highway

into the dripping

frog-popping countryside

for a drink of Fireball Whiskey

in a backseat bar.

They’re listening to Lady Gaga

but I’m listening

to the same old wavelength I was

when Bob Dylan went electric.

I listen to the words

like the footfall

of a woman coming up the stairs

though no one has

with love in their heart

for so long

I feel I’m losing in overtime

without even playing the field.

And I’m tired of relying on my solitude

as a default muse.

And there’s nothing to drink around here

except uninspired booze.

All the dragons that used to get fired up

like roadtrip Harleys

lie idle as school furnaces in the summer

forgetting it used to be them

and not their arthritis

that once swallowed the moon

and brought the rain.

A dragon at peace with the world

is an urn

with the soul of a weathervane.

They all need a minuteman

to know which way

the wind is blowing

but to judge

from the fury in my heart

and what’s not inflammable

about my next breath

it’ll be lightyears yet

before I come to that

like a star eating

a spoonful of its own ashes

to recall the taste of fire.

Yesterdays’ lean mean volcanic fountain-mouths

that meant what they said

like new islands in the mindstream

turn into tomorrow’s

fat jolly fire-hydrants

trying to drown

the used matchbooks

of their igneous past

in the watersheds of their sorrows

like arsonists in Atlantis.

And the leaves fall

like psalms of napalm

in the dead heartwood of autumn.

Not enough dragon-fire left

to start their own funeral pyres

or burn like heretics

in the kindling

of their orthodox crutches.

Some people just don’t know

how to say no to death.

And the ones that do

haven’t been born yet.

Two roads diverged in a yellow road

like the forked tongue

of a long and winding serpent

witching the air for prey

but I didn’t take either one

but take it as it comes

all the way.

Showing a starmap

to three blind mice with white canes

isn’t as good

as helping them realize

you don’t need eyes to shine.

True north isn’t a lost leader

that only knows where it’s going

by getting a fix

on whose following behind.

And there are no bridges of time

where we can meet again

to span the gaps

between eternities

in an afterlife of rainbows.

This is it forever.




Not now and then

but who and when.

Carpe diem

as if there were no tomorrow.

And I know a man

whose heart is as heavy

as a leftover bullet

that didn’t take the shot

and a woman

who put her make-up on

like a target

no one ever gave

a second look.

It might be an old story

but it’s always a new book

to those who live it

as if it had no end.



Even so

it’s your afterbirth

that perishs first.

But once you’re off the wheel

there’s no bend in the road

that can turn you around.

You’re void bound for good.

The axis of the earth.

The still point.

The endlessly expansive center

of an over-reactive universe

dying to get to the bottom of things.

Space has no sense of place

like the ghost of a homesick longing

to return to better times.

It’s dwelled in its homelessness

like the wind

or a poet in autumn

or people on the move

for billions of years.

Like everything else in the universe

it’s a ubiquitous beginning

with perfect timing

that just doesn’t know when

to quit.