Reanimated Lavender Granola Switchblade Nun rides again.

Saturday, September 30, 2023

Baseball Game In The Prison Yard

 There is a ballgame in the prison yard.
A silver dollar stands on its edge on the gallows
and shivers with every hammer stroke.
Hit it and walk free.

An eagle perches on the crossbeam,
worrying at the rope. All the batters are blind
and in terrible slumps. 
In the morning if the rope snaps, you'll see the afternoon.

John Baal, the Babe Ruth of the Big House
swings hard and misses; the earth wobbles
and Krakatoa blows. 
Cigarette, prisoner? Blindfold? 

For my last meal, I request all my past mistakes
and they are served on a cracked plate. 
The eagle is fascinated with its shine and my Morse.
I yell "Pull!" and sling the plate through the bars. 
A home run,
the first in years,
hits it and it blows.

See the eagle and the white shattered stars.
See the runner circling like a constellation.
One way or the other, I will leave this prison tomorrow

like a three-run shot.

For Desperate Poets "Desperate Oracles.

I drew one card from my Medicine Cards-- #1, the Eagle. 

I drew another from my Baseball Tarot--major arcana XII the Slump, analogous to the Hanged Man in a normal Tarot deck.

These fit, as I have been experiencing both spiritual power--my sobriety anniversary was Friday--and weakness in the form of a preceding depression. 

Process note: I swiped "John Baal, the Babe Ruth of the Big House" from Philip Roth's "The Great American Novel."

Thursday, September 21, 2023

Final Take


Take me in your arms, though they and I both tremble.
Take my ticket, in the shape of a falling fruit tree leaf,
light and red and now yours, after all this time.

Take me to the harvested fields, cleared of crow and ear.
Take me as I am, with my empty emblems in a cherrywood box.
Take time to be silent, and in being so become my healer.

Take all that I have loved or shattered, planted or trampled.
Take me to my wedding, that melody in a dead bedroom.
Take me to my grave, where I will subside at last.

Take a photograph and give it to the waters beneath the bridge.
Take down everything the river rocks say--that is my epitaph.
This is the take to keep at last--it is all there is or should be. 

For What's Going On Take This Poem.

Top image created by Bing A.I.

Music: J P Jones Prophet In His Prime

Wednesday, September 20, 2023



This is the hospital
where the nicked-up blown-up bastards show up.
We give them ice cream 
and a priest.

There is a river
down the middle.  We launch ourselves into the current
and it is unclear
who is drowning, who saving.

It's a system of gradations, and if you don't die in Emergency,
why then, we come into your room with cake and streamers.
Presto! You're ambulatory, then outpatient, then nurse, doctor,
surgeon, administrator, president emeritus, cutting ribbons
instead of flesh.

See one, do one, teach one is the motto. See the staggering
son of a gun falling to the floor with wounds beyond telling.
We lift him as if we were angels.
Yesterday, we were lifted.
Tomorrow, who knows?

Nothing stops the flow of the river or the flow of patients.
We are Boatmen, and Mermaids, reaching, 
saving, being saved. We are heroes of the
Carousel Horse Cavalry, coming over the 
hill, with bugle and blood pressure cuff,

dizzy with purpose, maybe dying, learning as we go. 

for Desperate Poets We Can Be (SUPER) Heroes

Music: Brass Band of Battle Creek Song of the Volga Boatmen

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Your Heart

Now, after the fact, like a glitterbomb coroner,
I want to have another look at your heart.
My microscope went blind last time--
I squeezed it too hard, like a sponge when I'm angry-cleaning.
I was too fascinated, sappy,
needful as a driver in a wreck.

Bring me an ambulance in the shape of a spyglass.
I want to find my own ghost.

I thought your bones were made from hard cane,
your hair caramelized smoke.
I wore a white coat (as if I knew something),
glasses made from willow switches, and a half moon smile.
Relax, I told you, but it was me in the coma.

Now--please hold still for once. These worms aren't good,
like the plastic model I saw at the vet's. Your heart,
like the plastic kitchen I used to play with,
practicing to be a fly that would bite you one day.
Eat my attention, it's good for you.

Each worm burrowed there is something I said,
some of which I meant--the rest was practice for a role. 
Let me pull one out like a string, pull it and it speaks this poem,
a pretty wasp with a stinger where the truth pools. 

I am too harsh, I know. I am the laundress who bleaches everything,
a maniac for killing the invisible baddies, a hospital candy striper
performing unauthorized tests that do nothing, or at least,
don't cure or induce any useful fevers.
I have your results. I'll bring them down to the morgue where my
hand awaits its conclusions as if they were a ring or a nail.


they weren't worms,
just paper streamers.

I infected you
but it made you better for a while.

the microscope cannot be repaired.
my report needs to be presented in a recognized language.

i'm sorry, truly, if i hurt you
that was never my intention.

this poem is not written in my true voice.

i was never your babe.

that was never your heart.

Music: Igor Paspalj "The Thrill Is Gone"

for Desperate Poets "Illicit Encounters"

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Promenade In Green & Gray


Spring is the season of madness,
as fine and also bitter as any high always is in the end.
Every doomed thing that grows boasts in beauty,
and who wouldn't finger the new green blades?
who wouldn't close their eyes in the warm stranger sun and sigh?

Every heart is a blind radio, and what good is the word or song
without someone to hear it, turn toward it,
and seem to know the meaning?

Summer is a fever we invite, because we long to be feverish.
What fool thinks a bonfire will burn a hundred years? 
Look, legions of fools consumed by the thing that feeds them,
vanishing because we long to vanish, and then crying, lost, surprised.

In autumn, I have felt myself fall in a million pieces, until I stood
naked as any idiot tree. I was beautiful in a million ways,
pick me up, press me in pages, even just one leaf between leaves,
but I end up with all the others, up against some fence, silent, far from home. 

Winter is the season of stillness, and those who have stored up sorrows
find they do not lack for much. Snowy ground makes others much clearer--
where they've come from, where they're headed. There's no need anymore
to build with strips and shreds, we become our own nest and wait,

astonished and patient, a quiet station at rest in the moonlight. 

for Desperate Poets "Desperately Different". 

Title adapted from the song Green Rocky Road

Music: The Motels Only The Lonely