Sunday, October 23, 2016

Desire, In Tones of Orange & Rust

Hi, pay attention, it's only me--
the steampunk librarian of Born-to-Lose Street
writing down alternate endings on the backs of envelopes,
the backs of surrogate lovers, the flip side of receipts...

Here's the door of my bedroom, six inches off the floor,
all my darlings trip out and fall like leaves.
Orange is the color that us Irish women love, it goes with green
and so we spend eternities dropping our flame-hair from the high branches of trees.

I never said I was stable,
or nice,
or worth the trouble,
all I said was you would get something rare.

Enough bullshit. I've trimmed my lips back with a peeler from a kitchen drawer,
until now I can only speak truth and all my old popularity is gone.
I'm the futuristic poet chick of By-Invitation-Only Twilight Bower,
and my dreams are in tones of wild and wood: berry-red, leaf-jade, rust and fawn.

I've been through men,
been through women,
been through solitude and I like that best;

But when I saw the way the light landed soft upon your cheek,
I fissured, I trembled in spite of myself, and thought, "Could there yet be
a fire so patient as to unwind itself at last, 
late-born (poor fool), late-kept and late-blessed?"

For Kerry's Dylan challenge at Real Toads. I was inspired by the song "I Want You."



Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The Tenth Month

In the tenth month,
the limits of the natural are exceeded.
Trees dissolve and what remains
too long must be expelled, debrided.

There you perch, smoking while I suffer.
Fire, Love? We burn, but as a disease.
In the tenth month, what has gathered must scatter
lest it smother, lest it freeze.

Behold what becomes
(of our union, dear, of our fucking.)
Behold the freak, the monster
the helpless nightmare of our making.

In the tenth month, you cannot fly, but seize
as your pretentious pose shits itself and dies.
And me? Your one-time ideal?
I eat shame, and vomit, when our merciless fledgling cries.

for Magaly's "October" prompt and for the Tuesday platform, both at The Imaginary Garden With Real Toads. 

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

My Mask

My mask
cleans up nice.
Guys talk rot to it,
and it talks back.

My mask 
goes to work,
spouts input,
yaps at clients.

get in my mask,
tell it we're a bitch.
My mask changes parking lots.

Let's sit here, mute as dummies you and I.
We'll watch our masks
more real than we have been in years.

for Words Count with Mama Zen.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

The Shipwreck

"All men shall be sailors, then, until the sea shall free them"--Leonard Cohen

They stood on the beach with poles,
not to rescue those wave-palsied souls who gasped their last,
but to push them further out to sea.
"A storm hit us," said the swimmers, slowly cartwheeling back under.

"No," said the beach-folk, pursing their lips in distaste for the lie,
and shaking their heads. "There is no climate crisis,
and therefore no winds such as you describe."
With that, they poked the confabulators with their poles until they sank.

"Build a wall!" came the cry. "A sea wall!"
Not to protect from invented storms, but from very real strangers
arriving unwelcome despite the poles, some still moving and coughing,
some insolently still.

In the end, order was restored and the glubbing drowners dispersed.
"We will pray for them," said the beach folk,
thinking themselves quite grand in their largesse.
The children, who had come to gawk, were sent inside as a precaution.

"After all," said the mayor, gazing nobly into the middle distance
and gripping his bible with its tales about good industrious fishermen,
"this is not appropriate for youngsters to see;
besides, you know what they say about sailors."

for Kerry's shipwreck challenge. Thanks for filling in for me!

Thursday, September 29, 2016


I am sober 31 years today. So long Annie Green Springs. Hello everything that has been possible since.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Book Review: "Dogspell, or Sally & Seemore & the Meaning of Mushki"

DogspellDogspell by Karin Gustafson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Karin Gustafson, author of the manicddaily blog, has written an absolutely winning children's book with the most charming illustrations ever. Sally is a girl whose mom (Ruby) is always salvaging things and making gadgets and clothes and book bags and Rube Goldberg contraptions (now you know why she's called Ruby!) out of them. When she suggests building a robot pal for Sally, though, she's gone too far. Sally insists on a dog, and so they go get a little curly white puppy Sally names Seemore, or Seemie for short.

The book alternates between Sally's voice and Seemie's. The dog's narration is beyond cute. The story deals with school, mean girls, not fitting in, and finding confidence in one's self, but the book is never preachy, always fun. I have given it 4 stars just because I reserve 5 stars for books that seriously rock my world or change the way I think. This book is simply a wonderful book for children or the young at heart, and is highly recommended.

View all my reviews

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Sisyphean Haiku

The last pages of this book are full of sand--
enough to bloody my fingers.
My pockets are filled with sugar I pretend is stars. 
When I touch my fingers to them, they stick to the blood and turn pink
like cherry blossoms in haiku.

I put the tip of my tongue to the sand and stars
to taste earth and heaven together, but it's no good--
grit in my mouth makes me grind my teeth until I spit red.
Having combined dirt and deity, I carry the experience
but produce no pearl. 


I am not sure if this is pastiche, Kerry, but it is my attempt at it.