Thursday, April 02, 2009

New Review; 2 New Poems

A new review of "Unexpected Light" (the fifth!) has just appeared in Eclectica. Have a look.

I've now got thirty songs up on Soundclick. Have a listen and report back.

I'm writing a poem a day for National Poetry Month, however bad. Here are the first two for April 1 and 2nd:



I want a hand-rolled cigarette,
only the best tobacco--
I am not an amateur.
I have been at this a long time.

Brown-gold leaf
rolled in sweet rice paper
warm rush inhaled
from a thousand thousand fires
our ancestors kindled
announcing mastery
to predator and prey,
carried by coals
from cave to cave.

Blast of nicotine
brain to attention,
galvanometers will tell you
what you already know:
this drug will juice you
this drug will goose you
there's no excuse, you
Your mustache reeks of it.
You've stained your teeth with it.
Your gums recede from it.

This magic smoke
will stiffen your bronchi
and petrify the air sacs
into fibrosed honeycombs.
Then there's the cough, hack,
mucus, wheeze, blow, cough,
hack cycle, searching for butts
in the sand of the theater tray,
freezing your ass off at night
'cause nobody gets to smoke inside.

Let me go, Tobacco,
from the valley of my addiction
to the mount of holiness
from the pit of my damaged will
to the city of willingness.
Make me transparent as water,
let no cell go unturned,
untwist the mutated DNA
in my distant bronchioles,
say halt to plaque in coronaries, too.

I'll burn sage in my doorway
to the departed spirits of fire
from a thousand thousand fires
once carried as coals
all in homage, desperate homage
to the fiery rootlets you have lodged
deep in my mind's pre-history.


Not Taxidermy

Who has shut the fortress
of my mouth and trashed
the drawbridge of my tongue?
Whence my silence?
I was a poet once,
words spilled out of me
like coins from a slot machine.
I'd collect them in rolls
organized by topic and flair
and call it poetry.
Now the machine won't spit
a silver metaphor,
much less a copper one.

I once calculated
how much I'd earned
by writing poetry.
It came to pennies an hour,
pennies an hour.
The minimum wage
in California is $8.
I should have mopped
McDonald's floors
or stuffed burritos at Del Taco.

But all of this is false collage,
pastel paper on wet cardboard.
You know the real reason:
It's a disease, this scribbling,
Gypsy dance of fingers,
a mania for exploring attics,
for squeezing fruit until unrecognizable,
give me a young mind to mold
and I'll squeeze all the juice out of it
and drink it up as a transfusion
for my poor enervated muse.

Beware, old poets can be parasites.
They want the glory of the disease,
not the stolid echo of past publications
hanging like dried roses
around a stuffed horse's head.
Stuffed horses, yes, what Roy Rogers
had done to Trigger, there's a feat
for any taxidermist to admire.
They want the real horse,
the one out to stud,
not for the glue farm.

This pieces are rough drafts and not to be mistaken for considered, polished pieces.

I have neglected this blog of late. Perhaps new poems will keep me posting.

1 Kilobunny,


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Unexpected Light

Unexpected Light
Selected Poems and Love Poems 1998-2008 ON SALE NOW!