I Fall to Pieces, Yes (poem)

If I could quote every damn word I’ve read in the past week
All at once. All at once. Where every letter slid into a perfect whatever
I’d tell you about the radiant sun that billows in a conch shell
Wreathed in flowing grape-colored tapestry, violence, wreathed in pain
Bunched up inside my chests; one locked and wooden, one flesh, one
Bone beneath the breast; I’d crush an origami swan right into that conch
To watch it burn white hot.

If I could slide syllable to slotted fucking syllable beside syllable
All lined up. All lined up. Where every sound had a new place around
I’d tell you about sto-len in-can-i-de-scence, and linger on the I
Carv-ing mean-ing to wait-ing, re-mov-ing su-per-flu-i-ties in me,
Leaving carv mean to wait mov flu I in me. No that isn’t what I mean.
Bone beneath the breast I’d crush–not that either, good sentiment.
I fall to pieces, yes.


Teeth Clack Prayer (Poem)

My little soft bullet is tucked between my lip and gum
Sucking the brass off it, sucking the powder out. Unburned

Saltpeter. Young, when first was I reversed, “old soul”
Felt wrong when all I did was spin like a hurricane
Clothes blown, unhinged closet door, two bulbs out and
Black inside discolored like

Charcoal. I found righteous and I stood beside me
Made-up man with his fantasy plan, role models gone,
Fingering the little triggers that blew up the sun, friends,
Now memories line book spines along book shelves
Line incense burners with nag champa, copal, and

Sulfur. I of my family made and carrying this stained glass
On my back keep track of things that break back to breaking;
Crisp morning day, the tip of my tongue a tiny pin, Round
Little Soft Bullet against
Teeth, saliva-wet staining, aimed at my past, I needed


Ceremony (Poem)


Last night God sat me down to tea
Poured fog-and-mist down through teakwood mesh
Hickory next, swirled around the white half-moon
Cups, poured oceans out

Set about planks of cast iron and little nymph-slips
All piled about and shriveled like leaves, He
Lit candles set of man-fat and people oil and sinewy
White wicks, He made the ceiling like stars

Sang low of the living wood he grew from world-
Seeds, that hum you sometimes hear when Church
Closes its doors and someone speaks the wrong word
Or maybe conversations of Men who make no sense

The font itself a garden

Two pure white cribs between Him in i, and a cradle
A stable, a manger curved and cupped up with all the
Dreams, the magic and promise of flower-flavors, of
Petals that leave your tongue caked in memory

He slid the lid about, shined eclipses and borealae
Nocturnal things in the corners praying, silent moss
While porcelain and clay stumbled about themselves
Reworking, i heard them growing strong and hot

And God so spoke in nothing
There, spoke whole Bibles in framed half-steam
While silence blessed by wetted stone filled
Me to my bones

He did not drink, instead exhaled the slaughter
Of societies, of masochistic planets gone dust
Of loss that only omnipotence sows in observation,
Said, “This is for my brother.

I never knew the taste of tea.”

Althea (poem)

To give it a name–a thing, a move-
Ment, a legerdemain, while it walks down
Walnut Street, while it stares down the Postal
Service–is to tame and convince it
That it has purpose beyond “it”
In itself.

And you are knife.

We, the people of the (thick billed fox sparrow), clipped
stare toward the sun with our wax forming with
our thoughts of rose-red fingers climbing,
we who put the Lethe in Lethargy. Caught.
Before you see it, you see something else, and

back before, and back, in time, some pre-seen tale
all foreground and almost remembered but forgotten.

Never bloomed. Never lived. Never born.

All horizons from yesterday, somesuch dreams felled flickering crashed like when
That surfer breaks his sharpened board against shark skulls, tastes salty sand and perhaps
Godly wine, the sky a radiance like volcanic dawn and crippled clouds painted fake
onlookers prying serrations from his pulpy feet while he rolls and coats his flesh in stones

Glass. Perhaps armor.

To give it a name, this move-ment,
A letherdemain, while it drives away
To somewhere else, same horizon
Same sun still no closer to the sea
Or parting thoughts, it names me.

And you are knife. Sharpening.