Reanimated Lavender Granola Switchblade Nun rides again.

Thursday, September 30, 2021


 WordCrafter word list: Property/ Bizarre / Mercury / Melancholy / Indigo / Light / Languish / Purity / Thirst

Purity may be found
secreted behind that borrowed rib
a little southwest of the heart.

It uses serrated light
from the #39 bus,
its lit numbers visible only to those bleeding.

Mercury stepped on your kindness
and pawned his pride
for three dollars and a rolled bandage.

Melancholy Jane saw it all,
handed the driver a bible
full of indigo blues and lighter fluid,

Said, "Home, James,"
in your voice she had recorded under her tongue
like a password.

I hid purity in my messenger bag,
an inherited property, a ball and chain
made from beer tabs and lipstick.

All I want now is to languish famously,
pull poems out of top hats
and remember the bizarre attraction

you keep by the roadside
for marks and suckers
you turn to perfection on the wheel of your kiss.

Saturday, September 25, 2021

Free House Hunter's Guide from Herb West's Second Chance Realty!

1.When buying a new house, do not search via Ouija board.

2. A reputable realtor is key. Avoid any who keep a muddy shovel in the corner of their office. Notice his/her attire. Plague masks or hooded black robes are red flags.

3. Ask about pets. Some homes come with pets included, but inspect cupboards and attics for them before deciding.

4. Landscaping is important. Is the yard tidy and pleasant? Things such as grave stones, bright green industrial by-product bubbling up, or yellow crime tape are hints that the property has not been well maintained. 

5. How many bathrooms are there? Are there bathrooms at all? While outbuildings may lend a certain retro charm, how will you feel about it on a cold winter morning? Inspect indoor pipes and fixtures, if any, for gaping holes, flaking rust, or evidence that thieves have removed the copper. This can be ascertained by examining walls for smashed plaster, large missing sections, and graffiti. These are subtle signs of future trouble.

6. Is the house original, or have additions been added? Is there a mother-in-law apartment, and is someone's mother-in-law currently residing there? Do you think you could get along with her, or is she a total bitch? Would you want to have to bother with bricking or boarding her in? Very few new home buyers consider the inconvenience of police investigations and felony charges while still trying to settle in.

7. Is the exterior protected with aluminum or vinyl siding? Are there gaps where large birds have built elaborate nests? Are there apertures for archers or cannon? Are chimneys constructed of sturdy brick, or hastily applied papier mache? You'll want to know, before closing on a house. 

8. Finally, you know the old maxim: Location, location, location!!! Is the house near, or built on, a bog or nuclear waste dump? (Remember, the only glow you should have is that of a proud new home owner!) Is the house part of a military target range? Inquire as to their hours, national affiliation, and size of ordnance before moving in. You'll be glad you did! Also, check to make sure the property is not being used as a large cat sanctuary, winter grounds for carnies, or as a headquarters for an illegal religious cult.

Happy house hunting! My name is Mitzy MacIntosh, and I'd be delighted to help you find the home of your dreams! Just call Herb West's Second Chance Realty and ask for Mitzy!

Friday, September 17, 2021



I caught an echo of my father

in the way you wear your coat

In the way you're not entirely there

but linger on like smoke

I was looking for a thing that's gone

like those pens with tubes of ink

like mucilage or gum erasers

or feeling loved, I think

Now I've freighted you and burdened you 

and slowed you from yourself

with drapery of memory

I should hook and part myself

But all it was, was honor, sir

all it was was need

to make of you a palimpsest

that I could sigh and read.


For Sunday Muse #178, where I am hosting

the image is actor Alden Ehrenreich

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Mariana In The Morning

 Mariana in the morning
by Morning's light possessed
all afternoon she walks the cliff's edge
trying to forget.

Mariana by the window
in a yellow aster smock
She knows November brings the end
of all your foolish talk.

And the mermaids come to die
on her lonely rocky shore
they ask her for her anodyne
then ask for nothing more.

Mariana, bride of Sorrow
in Sorrow's cottage kept
She counts the coins the stars deliver
and medicates the debt.

Mariana, in her silence
braids the horses' tails
She knows November brings the ostler
with his shoes and nails.

And the mermaids come to die
on her lonely rocky shore
asking for her anodyne
then asking nothing more.

They Are Marching

 They are marching
where the red flowers bloom
They are marching and sometimes stoop to gather
the white and fallen fragments of the moon

They are sleeping
and dying with the hours
they are sleeping and hallucinating sweetly
white swans and lilies in their bowers

They are falling
where bones turn into pennants
They are falling like the spines of dusty hymnals
where angels count forgetfulness as penance.

Hybrid Perennial


He brought her a manuscript made from sidewalks
and evening air.
He had eaten stars, nearly died, fathered a revolution,
all while admiring the lilies in her hair.

She complained of her situation and boredom while drinking
He developed a cough, and from the cough
came the man she now lounges beside.

Someone buried the manuscript and where it was buried
roses unfurled.
He fills his pipe with suicide, does not recognize his only child
and the woman smiles, become an ingenue, a cipher, a nattering girl.

Tuesday, September 14, 2021


 A bold black cricket came in from the night
with a message wrapped around his leg
I offered him bread, my body, my bed
and an indigo blue Russian egg.

He had only the song that crickets know
taught them by their dying mothers
He played it on the silk and scar of my skin
and told me there would be no others.

My hair is blond, his body was black
and hard as the truth in a mirror
The night was warm, the dawn too quick
and the last time drew one season nearer.

For Our Lady of Smoke & Window Sills

 You Are Our Lady of smoke and window sills
and I am a wheel made of rope and memories
A birch skin sun, full of poetry and rum
lays out its playing cards on the breeze

If I have hurt you, take this yellow bird
and ask it to sing your childhood back
If it dies in your palm, then you'll know that all along
we've lain our hearts together on the track

There is no dome of heaven blue enough,
to pose as Sunday's ornament
no coin to buy the peacock's lovely strut
and no tongue to tell you what it meant

In every water well, a witching stick
to guide the thirst back to our lips
where we could cure the snowblind trumpeter
and offer him our silence like a kiss

There is no morning glory blue enough
to pose our fanned out deck of saints
or to repair the garland in your hair
that falls like leaves we pretty up with paints.

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Crotalus Aquilus


The thing in my hair was not there
when I was a child--
only the breeze.

You cannot pet it, it will only
hunker down, hiding.
I am never lonely, but long to be.

Sometimes it slithers down my arms
to my fingers
and lays eggs inside.

(They turn to stone,
change flesh to bone.)

In my belly, its basket swells
with the things it saves--
a crowded hell.

"Look at the fat old lady, dropping things!"
the children call.
The thing in my hair bites their ball.

At night the thing whispers, nips,
draws blood and memories,
worries, fits.

(At dawn it dies and sleeps
wrapped like a hobble around my feet.)

Play a flute and see it risen as a Christ
undulating, swaying
in a mockery of praying

Above my head, a permanent rotten halo
unasked-for, inevitable,
whispering, "You are beautiful,

(Senora, like the setting sun,
mi viejo.")

mi viejo = "my old one"

Crotalus Aquilus = Queretaro dusky rattlesnake, a venomous pit viper found at high altitude in Mexico. 

Saturday, September 4, 2021

Trout Fishing In America


Left Michigan that June
with two teacher friends.
Saw Looking For Mr. Goodbar
in South Bend.

No wonder the country's going to hell.
All the teachers are cruising the bars!

In a Jackson Mississippi Mickey D's
there were elephants on the wall for art.
They're real, said Jim. No, said I.
Jim's grin. In my world, they are.

Crossing a bridge into Louisiana
we saw white cranes circling the marshlands.
The entire Richard Brautigan library across the back seat;
on the tape machine, Jackson Browne & friends.

It was just something to do that summer,
passing the bottle to pass the time.
But now, with all the black coffee blur behind me,
that year still goes down smooth, holds a shine.