Monthly Archives: June 2013

this makeshift experiment towards immortality we call poetry

carry my dreams onward
for me, forever forward
of this time and place
to conquer the landscape
of the mind eternal
with words never quiet
or restful but bristling
with bellicose intentions
a marching army of
serif-footed fire ants
setting aflame the
encroaching dark, forgetful
nighttime of our mortal woes
for this is the poet’s special favor
sanctioned as divine comedy
to alone survive
that final utterance
those less damned
are earsilenced by.

Surviving the Generation Gap

this is the cry
of the parent waiting
for the parent
in absentia
to come home
and soothe the hurt
even when there is none
no mother or father left
to come home to
whatever place
that might
now be
without them.

nuncle, mine uncle sam

what naturally must follow
when the self-appointed fool
who now refuses to juggle
how and why anymore
forgoes the politic
electing instead to speak of treason
(or strictly the facts, ma’am)
under another name
and reports the rotten states
of denver/massachusetts/arkansas
remarking how the highest
office in the once-brave land
houses cigar-toting low-lifes
and father-son ventriloquist acts or
worst yet peace-illiterate laureates
for herein is a warning
beware the ides of time
when sheer anarchy shall
overrun the republic
as democracy in full motley
should take to the streets
in a laughable fashion
seeking the reinstatement
of life, liberty and happiness.

A Postcard from Pompeii

Men, children, dogs and lovers
encased in ash, mothers with
babes in arms (Vesuvian clay
pottery figures) caught in an
instant of pre-nuclear panic
a necropolis devoid of sound
but for the echo of a thousand
thundercracks bearing down
the mountain to the bay of Naples
raining sulfurous fire like
there would be no tomorrow
the gods of Pompeii—a mongrel
mix of Egyptian, Roman, Etruscan and
Greek—brought the sea to a boil
before unleashing hell on earth
deaf to the cries of the faithful
lying dying in the streets
a postcard to inform our own atom-
splitting days.

A Conceit Owing Much to I Who is Someone Else

In the name of thrice
blesséd unholy Rimbaud
who famously took
extended leave of absence
from his own once-organized
senses I too’ve spent
my fair share of seasons in hell
although to tell of it, I’m sure
would read better in
the bewitching cadences
of his native tongue
une saison en enfer
sounding softly deferential
in lieu of a more agony-bred
title for the verses of
one fatally accursed
the switch from absinthe
to opium addict accounting for much
of his later heightened suffering
although offering little
more than poetic license
to explain my own fall
from grace/loss of nerve
and subsequent search to
re-find/refine it these
fifteen years past caring
he the master alchemist
(impossibly at twenty-one)
me his apprentice, learning
to consume these poisons
contained within and the
love of the quintessence
of words, this being the horrible work
without boundaries, without sleep, without blessings
without hope of salvation, the clouded moon glimpsed
at midnight a fortress stormed by will
alone and the ramparts of
reason left in ruins
so as to croak these bejeweled
laments as lonely as a crow.


for without her i am nothing

listening for the
of the muse
a soft, jealous
task of inquiry
after finer threads
of meaning
with which to
craft a fresh
wonder of words

On Second Thoughts

First thoughts, like thoroughbreds
Oftentimes race to untoward conclusions
Unabetted by serious cogitation
By putting trophy logic
Above all other considerations
Whereas contrariwise
Second thoughts prosper
Free of the greed for speed
And meander less-frequented
Flightpaths to glory
Like fancy-footed fillies
Too young for the restrictive
Harness of serious racing.

Thy Kingdom Come Undone — (The Song of the Vanquished)

There is no chorus of the damned
No acapella choir of the apocalypse
Only the siren song of singular suffering
Each of the forsaken moan alone, as one.

In their intimate places of sorrow
Scattered over the blasted heath of regret
Those vanquished by the maligned message
Raise their voices in praise of none.

First choice for 1st Voice, this baleful drone
Of a cheer-abandoned balladeer
Who chills the blood of all who would hear
As he sings to thee of thy kingdom come undone.

The Ghost of Porlock’s Least Favorite Son

I’ve decided to name Coleridge’s infamous person from Porlock Bennett Channing. By way of background, for those of you who are unsure of whom I speak, the mysterious Mr Channing is that inconsiderate (and previously anonymous) personage responsible for rousing Samuel Taylor Coleridge (STC) from his slumber, at the exact moment the great Romantic poet had been busily composing his masterwork Kubla Khan, while under the influence of an opium-induced reverie.

Immediately upon waking (or so the story goes) STC had next promptly forgotten the greater part of what would go on to become one of the most revered poems within English literature. For evidently the poem as we know it is but a mere fragment of a supposedly more complete work of genius lost due to said misfortune.

Likewise, I too have experienced my very own “Bennett Channing”-moment this very morning. Hence, my obvious eagerness to “name and shame” that oafish interloper who would banish nocturnal poetic invention by visiting unbidden on business unspecified.

In my own case, I had been blissfully dreaming of my writing the perfect blog post, when I was awoken rudely mid-dream by the sound of the bedroom door creaking inward, as though opening of its own accord. Immediately whereupon all knowledge of the “perfect post” in question’s topic and content were completely lost to me, receding after the manner of mist being met by the first rays of the rising dawn sun.

With no logical explanation to account for why the bedroom door should have acted in such a way, I have since been forced to infer that I have fallen prey to the ghost of Coleridge’s selfsame person from Porlock, still roaming the land and looking for dreams of unusual genius to dispel.

There seems to be no other suitable conclusion that I can reach to account for my tragic loss. Which is why I wish to identify both Coleridge’s and my intellectual assailant, for evermore, as being none other than one Mr Bennett Channing. So that you too, who read this, should not suffer the same sorry fate.

But what of the “perfect post”, to which I have alluded earlier, I hear you ask? Alas, I remember nothing more about it other than, maddeningly, that it was truly perfect…

So, damn you, Mr Bennett Channing! Ghost or no ghost, you have no right barging your way into the sleeping sanctity of an inventive writer’s dream-life. Damn you, back to hell, sirrah, I say! For on the honeydew of the perfect blog post [I] hath fed, only to be next awoken and left with nothing but the taste of ashes remaining in my mouth! Good day, to you, most foul fiend!

Spirit Photography

Is it our destiny to become
Ghosts of the digital age
Whereby when we die
Our images will live on
Forever in the ether-net
Surviving us as personal
Avatars never laid to rest
That instead continue to
Roam the global ever-after
On our behalf, transmitting
Our likenesses and
Impressions from
Beyond our earthly graves
Whilst we persist
Like a form of
Binary half-life
Never to find peace
In blissful decay…