Peace & Good Order
Okay dear, whatever you can manage
will be propped up in a boat next to you
full of apologies and texts from some cabin
pumped with nitrous oxide next to the ocean.
You can’t regret stuff when your mouth
is lick-jacking the petunias. In this instance
the poltergeist is actually the heat in this room.
That shit’s got a real ghostly presence here
on Baltic Street. I’d like nothing more
than to see the future spread out on your bed
in chambray and muscles but I’m stuck.
This is like some other things,
but I like this one better.
You know what I am saying.
What a ridiculously hot day can do
is make you sweat all over me.
All of this realism is what makes things
sort of interesting for the people
who can’t be here right now.
By referring to real things
throughout the day,
you can start behaving
like you have a real body
that can do fun things.
I would like to sit down
on the roof and watch
you fly away to some realistic
land just down the block. Brooklyn in the heat
is so meager in the Department of Hope.
I am leaping into position, ready for the
delight that people with orange tans provide.
I will think of the circumstances that led me here
and, when I’m done, I will craft an excuse
not to be here at all.
How to Initiate Human Contact
You could arm wrestle with a perfect stranger
on a beautiful day like today. Okay, try this:
Walk into a deli and put a gallon of milk on the counter and ask
the cashier to arm wrestle. Simply put your elbow up
on the counter next to the milk and challenge the cashier
with your inside voice. Maybe there’s a truck idling outside
and some kids are walking to school,
maybe a man is standing behind you
with a package of cookies. It’s all coming together now.
You need to initiate contact with some fellow humans,
but you’re going about it all wrong.
You’re too aggressive and there’s not enough sweetness or fun
in your leisure activities. Here, let me show you how.
I hope this is a magical year for you.
I miss you a lot.
Imagine a city
underwater where you
swim around in fancy pants
lock arms with total strangers
surface gasping as your lungs blaze
surrounded by bright orange air
you are nearly magical and sincere
children drive silver jets
that they pedal with their tiny legs
and then more summer
and simple movements
almost like dancing
around the sun on a goofy planet
here we are whispering our day
over the phone hexing new developments
holding on for one more day.
King of Time
I’m going to use the words you love
write something that smells like beer
light a bonfire on the roof
toss pine cones at the neighbor
kids I’m going to shout into a dirt clod
like it was a microphone
in a laundromat I will go back to my school
and jump around the auditorium like I never
did once I should have stuck my finger
in a socket in the Principal’s office I will leap
into the air from the water tower spray
some paint over a “Rimbaud” stencil
on the back of my V.W. light the action
in the aftermath of glory comes platinum
oh you inspectors of cruelty I’ll have none of your
sparkled hairdos and misshapen identities
you can keep your hot pounds and your celebrities with glass eyes
go throw yourself into a wall I prefer to chat with my mouth
or chew into an apple of deeper beats in this backwater of life
uninterrupted by death I have a hand waving
get me out of here.
Radiant & Dazzling
I want something really vast and soft
and radiant and dazzling to lift you into
the day so that you feel a real sense of panic
start to recede. There will be gorgeous spiders
and bits of blue skin and something really
sweet like peach pie and honey and pomegranate
jam and stuff like that. Huge flakes of snow
won’t piss you off like they do me when you
walk in the field in Prospect Park someone
is there won’t you watch them watch you
walk to me? I can’t control what you do
in your free time but I can make a helpful
suggestion or three. Won’t all the days you thought
would never end finally end and become
planted in your memory as calm shivers? A shark never
stops moving, not even for you, so why should
you stop getting jacked up before bed, if not for me?
The city is all moist and expectant
like my hand on your cheek as you sleep,
I certainly hope so.
Red Onion in the Snow
An elegant blitz of slush
is something I can wake up to.
My sheets have jelly on them.
All my books are marked with severed
pinkies. Out in the living room someone
spilled corn on the pillows
and stinky green multivitamins
are strewn on the floor.
What’s going on here?
I’m alone with the
crisp metallic clang of the radiator and the sounds
of snow removal machines humming
together creating a wobbly harmony.
The day is blank. Someone put
a red onion on the snow outside
my door, like that would help
change things, like I would ever
make out on the F Train again.
Who Let You Go?
All the people are getting even with my
new panic button because they are revved up on
capitalism. A battering ram at my door like on a cop show,
with theatrical urgency, because they know they’re being filmed.
I don’t want to wake up to that, ever. It’s good to mention
what you feel too but what about my door? It’s fucked.
An eagle on a nature show eats some fungi
and mistakes himself for a fist with wings
(he flies pretty good for sick eagle though).
Oh for the days of simply whistling while I floated
down a river with my ass planted in an inner tube.
Oh to never again frisk a litigant, or sell something
to someone I don’t even know. I’m trying to be fabulous
all the time. I’ve ordered some super special diamond dice
from the internets that are just for licking, you. Of
wetness and the bridge of your nose, of workers
knocking things over, of dreams that show
no signs of beginning. Oh, who let you go?