Friday, October 31, 2008

Hamlet with a Hangover

A transient claiming to be a
covert military operative from Australia
was arrested Monday on the Westside because he was
drinking from a full-size beer keg and trying to sell
beer to passersby.

Someone called 911 after reportedly seeing him
drinking beer from a Mason jar
and urinating in the bushes.

Police searched his belongings and found about 20 grams
of psilocybin mushrooms and a
Camelbak bladder with more beer in it.

He also had a harmonica and a wetsuit with him,
both of which are suspected to be stolen

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Handcuffed to Eternity

Morning sun a skatewheel
skipping between scattered
clouds (all dirty white with
violet staining underlit
& you can shrug your hips
at passionate accidents
in soft corners if you want
texting barefoot wine bottles on the
darkside of a Martian beach scene
semi-tropical & hyperextended
with lukewarm seawater filling your ear
like a strand of silky barbed wire
rusting in a tidal swamp
handcuffed to eternity

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Goodbye, Dirty Machine (part 64)

We sped over a crazy hurricane wake terrain of broken trees, small bogs and trash…and we arrived at the resort via the north through the shade of coming night, parked the vehicle, and made for the outdoor bar, which sat next to a pool and upon an enormous deck that had two levels…the smaller level being down almost to the water's edge where green sea grass flowed in the shallows and an occasional fish swam by ...The barkeep was a black man of local youth and natty beard and all smiles and information...not surprisingly, Dean had his name already and he’d been treated well by him

‘Ey man what's going on—through small eyes and with the sandy hep voice...You guys here to see those ladies?—I saw them out on the beach today man...yah...they looked gooooood my friends—and with gracious wink nodding to us and we both saying "laugh laugh laugh...what're you talking about Marlon?   What girls?”—feigning a divine innocence and smil¬ing shit-eaten and coy... "We just came down here to have a beer laugh laugh laugh..." –Aw shit man, that's bullshit, I know you man...I seen you talking to them yesterday...Man you smooth...I know what you’re doin…you want a Belikan my white liars?—“TWO please Marlon and this is my buddy Price—Price this is my man marlon..."Marlon, I says, It's mighty nice to know you my friend, thanks for the beers and how did the women look today if I might ask? Did that fine Candy with the hourglass onions look extra nice?" Sharpe was giggling uncontrollably—Jesus Christ he was doing his Uzi chuckle carved deep with mischief, the laugh equivalent of our shit-eaten grins...-Aw man she had a big sunburn but those coconuts yeah, they be fine...and the little gymnast, oooooh wheeee she had the legs on her bra, you gonna got up in that piece! –“Ohhohhohoho shit, saith Dean, followed by the razzle chuckle, “Did you hear that Price?” “Indeed I did yessir Sharpe, this is gonna get weird...” Marlon said —That's right boys...and lookee here, I can see them now inside the bar there, they've arrived—and sure enough through the glass doors of the indoor bar and pool table we could make out the cut of two young tan women dressed in bikini top and sarong bottom that was so in fashion...”Oh um and yea Marion thank you we'll check you later” and looking at each other smiling large and walking across the wooden deck around the chaise lounge and glass tables, all the while eyes ahead on their posteriors…

So we entered and they turned and we all asked “how are you’s?” and smiled...Nodding Irishly, Sharpe angled towards the pool table and asked if we were up for a game and answering yes, I retrieved some quarters from the barkeep and loaded up that table and racked—Teams: Sharpe and Lydia, Myself and Candy and her enormous tits. What ensued was a drop forged game of truth and dare billiards…We laid it on thick, ducky, and strange and I took the dares into the categories of scat and lace and we all laughed and got drunk and had ourselves a time…

Fools we played and fools we finished ...and it was out into the opposable light to the bar where Marlon had fresh Belikans waiting and the stars said “@ midnight you must return to the compound”, but it was only ten and we were just winding up and the girls were putting back hi-balls of rum like coca cola and we sat just beside the dock on a round picnic table and continued the adolescent shiver and dive game of verbal sexual challenge…

-Michael Price

Controlled Substance

Disguised as a road disappearing into the fog
I was sure of one or two things
neither of which amounted to much more
than a refrigerator full of adrenaline
rippling in the dark

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Dead Sea Strolls

Splash Zone
oblique tacoburger architecture
on the edge of the world
sand drifting thru the parking lot
beneath aluminum trees

Deep Water
The Inventory (within eye-shot):
1. Venice BAMBOO Calif.
              (in script) on the longboard
2. Royal Quiet DeLuxe
3. Pacific Coast Highway
5. A History of Violence

No Limit
Back then I drove a Ford Fairlaine
that looked like a pterodactyl
& the western sky was all
wrapped up in string

Monday, October 27, 2008

Residual Sapphire Clouds

Slow blue pale blue aquamarine
Carburetor Blues
smog light haze decomposing
I realize I’m farther away than that

bluish greenish


you drag your knuckles in the sand

order the cheeseburger
& 7 beers


or the best case scenario

heavy duty engines running underwater
offshore breeze feathering the shorebreak

rippling darkwater testimony
as opposed to a sunstroke aqualung
your eyes lit up like an Ensenada drugstore
your pockets full of sand

Friday, October 24, 2008

Chrome & Water

The fragile
off-balance rhyme that buckles yr knees
              the long way back across the sand
kind of ringing in yr bones
                              a surly tango in the parking lot

sunlight grazing on seagrass
              the tide nuzzling up against the cliff
the silver shimmering out there in pieces
                              you can string together
                                                & wear on yr wrist

In the earliest maps California is
depicted as an island
              & as it turns out they were right

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Tracks in the Sand

              Tapping in now to the
slurred speech of waves (this time
                              dusted green submerged
                                                rationalized into silk
like an excerpt from
              Lao Tzu’s lost thesis
                                                on oceanography

              I have a shelf full of seastones & shells
                              I picked up off of beaches
                                                from Baja to Bolinas
              & I could tell you where each one came from
                              but maybe it would be better if you
                                                asked them yourself

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Goodbye, Dirty Machine (part 63)

So we sat around, the missus and Dean and Kurt and his wife Joy and talked and mused of Colorado and Big Al would saunter in full of sweat and talking excited like the boy he was and on to further projects but he always called me Price like Dean did, like he was just one of the thugs talking across an even table...”Price what are you doin’ these days?”, with that horsey smile and funny delivery...but he always listened with interest to what I had to say…maybe big Al was a Buddha in roebuck and grit showing us some wrongs that we might do right and smiling that 40 hand horse smile... and while Dean and I secretly planned our meeting with the coeds by individually digging the possible scenarios while carrying on the subtleties of casual idle-speak, it was decided that tomorrow we would take out the boat with Manny, their do-all local guide at the wheel…We’d do some diving, fishing, and beer drinking along with a seaward picnic lunch of some kind... big Al was going to do some bone-fishing and there was going to be a couple cases of Belikan consumed…which could bespeak a certain vanity but like I say when it is appropriate to be abstemious then be abstemious but when the tables swerve just indulge, veil your light and manage to shine…

Mrs, Sharpe would stay at home while the hombres were being hombres, running the two-way radio to keep us in radar range and safe should there be some divine question to ask or freak storm to avoid...we would set out at the red hour of six, ours being a two hour journey… it was decided that I should stay in the great downstairs guest bungalow in order to be steadfast and boot-shined by the time Mr. Sharpe was ready to roust... “In the day of prosperity be joyful”

I could see Dean getting antsy for our now fully-developed plan to travel by four-wheeled moto-vehicles down to the resort where Lydia and Candy were staying…excitement was beginning to get under our skin and we both felt the holy anticipatory rendezvous cum shot lightning in our ears...Dean got up and proclaimed that we were heading out, and by now it was early evening and the birds outside squawked and the light drooped down upon our eyes like great Los Angeles, the hazy dream light and heavy wet air loitering like street corner bums without reason, without soreness, that only southern clamorfornia sundown weeping-hour feeling was out there...this white manila canvas laid over with blue red orange fuchsia and green emotion, oh art, for hell, it's the beauty of beauty of course, getting my gun off this a way or that a way via color, and color being nothing more than refractions of light and this hincty L.A. light had delusional refractions, see, maniacal bendings, light creating the colors but also creating moods that no other light could, you see, because Colorado light for instance is sharp and vivid and lean and there's certain feelings triggered by those qualities ,say, palsy or thrifty-ness or exactitude or patriotism if you live in Colorado Springs...But this tropical light, when it's framed by paranormal Zen Americana hip west coast, it's the light of the melancholy of Coleridge, the grip of Bird's habit,--"Peckinpah’s Light"—

And it's in this terrarium that Sharpe and I set out, removed from the family quaintness and security into a world willed by our base senses…two men showered and ready, seeking poison to earmark the possibility of history in make--we were calculating, cunning, & so on--and so we left...Dean had me on back of another motorized terror vehicle, designed to tear up and go over whatever was in the way…sure I myself used to tear up hills and dales in my youth but here we were reaching for 35 and these Sharpes had all the toys America deemed necessary for the male...and along with sports, this made up the 88% brain matter usage...

-Michael Price

Late Afternoon Song Early in the Morning

The way one might
downshift passing a whale skeleton on a day when the
decidedly distracted sunlight
wobbles like a sumo wrestler on stilts

when knock-kneed bamboo windchimes
along with a badly tuned mandolin
conspire to hijack my otherwise delicate sensibilities

a bucket of rain, green mist, multiple hinges, seaweed, gravel

The Complete Poems of the Pacific Coast Highway

a systematic disinclination of the senses
with diminishing returns

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Stone Canyons Beneath the Sea

velvet blades slice the ocean haze
              seashells skimming descent
                                                where you & I knock down the
                              auguries of innocence in rusty tidepool

              trembling Spanish interiors

                                                & a kind of rumbling indifference
                              you could build a religion out of

Monday, October 20, 2008

Goodbye, Dirty Machine (part 62)

And we had made contact, the twosome versus the twosome.   And we had made eyes—Candy and I—and they were not mad eyes, but eyes of primrose, and I was all for openings in this new second home...As usual Dean only had a small amount of time because he was required to report back to the compound for work, but we had made some plans for later that night with the dames and they seemed pleased...

All my life I had wanted Cunt, loads and loads of Cunt…It seems I was terrified of being nothing—were taught to yearn to be something and like my father always said in moments of heightened revelry “let’s get drunk and be somebody!"…but to be nothing is the freedom divine…

So Dean and I speeding homeward to the compound to see his folks and get the lay of their land…I see this giant tasty house with great open windows and local wood cut deep brown and and screens and great wooden doors, giant deck with observation tower towards the north and behind that the wind propeller all white and black for the winds of leisure to shape it...and once inside the furniture mimed the way you see it in Casablanca movie memories with great openness and a flavor you can breathe in all the way to a hungry stomach...Breath is the junior credential after all while death the I say when I sit "Holy breath or death" and here it feels alive and physical tho’ I know underneath lurks sam and sara the great suffering world of this is the place where the rumors were built, and though the Sharpes were far short of "owning their own island" as I had heard, they had it pretty good...and do you know that the old man had about twenty Belizians out on that pier working to bring it back to life after is was sunk by the hurricaine, and he himself was out back building a giant wine cellar and greenhouse with a blue backhoe brought from the states…

Meanwhile the Mrs. kept busy with needlepoint and magazines and the occasional mixture of cock and it was all bent up in some plutonian fashion seeing these Boulder youth-town people in such contrast and it was sweet too, like cribbage and the Donner party, and I felt right at home…I was singing, singing with a wide brick smile on my face...I loved it here, and I was going to stay as long as my American lungs would have it...

-Michael Price

Gunmetal Iguana Pipes

What is propped up with
aftermarket sun-
light lingers behind eyes
a long way back as I would
tell myself again
how see-saw battles have
spun-out in drunk-colored neon spray
just as I could say our numbers are
tapped like keystrokes in re-mix samples
of accent & rime
but ethereal enough
to keep your sunglasses on all night
not that I’d lift the tell tale
nor drag the sectioned break that tacks
your ankles to a cross of sand
but hazard to recite litanies resigned
to nickle & dime aloha bells
& count the steps below

Sunday, October 19, 2008

An homage

Out in the street

Out in the middle of the motherfucking street

Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Cantos

Dead poet walks into a bar, says
“This is a stick-up”

“Your metaphor or your life”

as if you had a choice

& either way you still get pistol-whipped
in 3 languages

Friday, October 17, 2008

Goodbye, Dirty Machine (part 61)

Dean showed up on a two seater watercraft ripped like a high performance motorbike and fast as god given speed.   He handled it like the son of an Andretti and I felt sure and goofy, being behind this nut from my youth past and laughing back at the Sun, that great Joy Mahasukha shining in the nature of each dead word of the season Summer, even tho’ it was the corpse of winter here...Dean yells to me about the two young women he met on his way over from Belize City, and it's so loud I can barely hear that they are going to be jet-skiing near Fido's at this precise set of moments oh man like sugar highs we sped over there and sure enough as I'm quoting Krishnamurti to the Judge "I will practice nonviolence, I will practice non envy, I will practice chastity" Sharpe has located two prototype college scandal sheet women zipping to & fro and circularly ass-wise with bikini top gilt hinged maneuvers making waves of all ill and fashioned frequencies…

Dean was marinated in covert information and motives, and I knew that whatever happened, there were 3 separate secrets being coveted here:   Dean’s over the world.   Mine over Ramona.   And Mine in the realm of what was happening inside...So I knew that to go on from here, spotting the rather impressive chest of the sand blonde and the loaded with options tan and olive complexion of the barely dressed Alpha female spinning next to her, I would be putting on edge the unspoken promise of said chastity with Ramona and most probably endangering my very life...Dean Sharpe had a nose for trouble, compromise, and lie coupled with great sources and scouts:   the very reason he found these two lovelies that day was because he had a scout at every major resort up the coast probably on payroll to find out what might or might not me this was so alien, to try so hard to have a hand in action of every ilk that to go out of way to befriend on that level leading to gratification or pleasure for I rarely had tried to enlist anyone but my own pecker in my shinanigans with the opposite sexes...But Dean was like his dad that way, always looking for that angle or step to get gone ahead, ahead of everyone else, who they figure is just as hot to get where they're going...what they don't see is Double D Death, for whatever we do leads to death ...that's where everything is going ...I think, “Unti1 I understand myself and my relationship to you I am chaos & misery & destruction & fear & brutality and Sharpe for all I can figure is thinking cunt and money in that order without the moment to sod himself with self inquiry and brood on a mistake ... Dean whipped our water pony around encircling his prey...and it's true, we were riding an ex-tension of his cock, befitting, for his nickname was hogasaurus in ‘87 when none of us had watched enough porn to know that god made them that big...(negative thinking is the highest form of understanding!)   "Don't slur over ‘em Price,"   have some je-ne-se-kwaw would ya?

They were fine enough and shy in coy...Dean gave the   "Hullo girls, again that are you?”   stuttering a not quite polished greeting that didn't matter for what he lacked in outright introductory con¬fidence he made up for in animal charm and the promise of girth...I sat on back while he introduced me and gave my best honed polite greeting getting both their names and then promptly forgetting amid the pungent aftermath of petroleum and the sickish smell of ether from the idling crafts..."come on,"   I said brightly, "there's lots of tomato anenomefish and mono's below that are choking on our gas...vamanos!”   And with that the spinning was on, eights and circles, leans and fishtails…and damn if those goils weren’t getting wound up and jolly right before our Jocklean eyes...I thought the endowed one—Candy—had given me some sort of sex apple side glance which is always nice, to be faintly noticed in crashing waves amongst the accumulated dead skeletons of coral animals, certainly better than brackish lukewarm indifference…

-Michael Price

Chosen Limit

Part of the weather just crumbles
              the other part slides past liturgical
& waxfoot benedictions where
                              high tide still has things swamped out

& my heart otherwise unspecified
              folded into the pavement, the
& blue sky palm fronds
                              spilling rust

like a mudslide on the moral high road

It takes a sharp blade to butterfly emotion
              you'll have to trade in the pocket knife for a
samurai sword

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Seeing Things

Late sun blue sky tipping
into coral, corral, seahorse,
serpent, shark, strange wings in the
              my father looking back at me from
                                                                                my reflection
as I would glance past or through
any number of faces
Poseidon, Thetis, Nereus,
Amphitrite riding in on the tide
                              various nymphs, mermaids
some give themselves to cold sapphire flames
              red hot go-go gone
              blood red rose red silver
                                                that’s how I feel walking to the beach
fish tail sleek trigger mechanism
all out of tune
takes me back to that
              god of the backward-flowing river Ocean
buzzsaw beer can riptide whistle
                              a shadow hand reaching for my cigarette
los vatos cutting across
changing shape with every step

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Slow Boat Express

Expect anything more than
a poem, a song, a diagram

them dark stars
them them ragged flowers
              spell death in Cantonese

Some other time when I was
learning to crawl up Cahuenga
Blvd where the streetlights
wouldn’t let go
like a voice in the trunk of a
stolen Corvette

but I was pulling deep off the bittersweet smog
expecting nothing
talking to myself

spun around in the deep night

from there to here

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Landing on Water

It’s like 4 a.m. & I’m
using a spoon as a torquewrench
thinking how it might impress
the lady with the
feathered wrists & ankles
whose blurry eyes are more like
shattered beach glass in a vacant lot
near the pier
than these shuttered windows of the soul

if I had a hacksaw I’d play her a tune

but I now invoke
napalm sunsets
not nearly as heavy as the internal combustion that
drives the ocean currents

same way shadows rustle in the wind
when she’s not looking

leaning up against a crooked horizon
in a glass jar
faithfully blank

Monday, October 13, 2008

Goodbye, Dirty Machine (part 60)

No one could ever figure Sharpe out because he was rangy and crafty and his face looked amiss with conniverey...but he had a way of being likeable in spite of the inhibition...he had a tireless personality that always asked questions of you, made you feel as if things were really about you when in truth Dean was just steering you around to a subject for which he could get something out of you or lay something upon you...and this must’ve come from his old man, a big tyrannical BOSS like the mirrored devil of Cool Hand Luke...we were all afraid of him…staying over at the house and he’d be up on the roof at six a.m. working unbelievably and then by seven we’d be up due to his gravity and man if he didn’t put us all to work in the yard, this big green Kentucky yard with landscaping and knolls, the very sight of peace and there was none to be found within it...that’s what got me, was the appearance of order, the discipline of right action, but little love, of which I was used to, but love in work, no grace, no wisdom from all this effort...just dull suffering and warped red-haired children of Ruth’s bitter corn...maybe they had some kind of love or bond going that I couldn’t see from my glints but it didn’t matter so much now that we were older and the old man had mellowed some...still always engaged in some great project…A strange big-handed red-faced lug of a guy, and like Dean, you just sort of had to like him a little bit cause he had some cut of endearment, some moments of cordiality...a heart it seems.   Anyway, the folks had made neighborly contact with my mother and this was how I knew that Dean and his older brother Kurt were due to arrive for Xmas...of course I saw him at Fido’s half-drunk and half-mad with teenage reverie—and of course he waited only five minutes to enlust me as his “co-pilot” to capture some young vacationers…it was an adventure, a game, a need he had to satiate and I was game…so the Sharpe brothers had driven their dad’s fishing boat, knowing that a barge had dropped thousands of cases of Belikan beer into the harbor near Belize City and they had rummaged two or three sandy cases and were considering going diving for more…that was until Dean had ferreted out two college girls with a set of parents en route to Mata Chica, the Toney up-island resort…

So Dean had his Theory of Art, ahem, wrong book, had his eyes his sights set on the 20 year old college girls from the south—our odyssey—a madness.   And rear admiral, Kurt, that is we called him “Rear” for being the “Admiral” of the two Sharpes, had his wife of a couple years with him and she was sweet and fun and the both of them lived vicarious-like through Dean as “Rear” had for most of his life…I got the telephone call from the compound later that night informing me that Dean and Kurt would be along tomorrow morning in their dad’s boat to pick me up and take me up island after getting some petrol and Belikan at the Texaco—

-Michael Price

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Drainpipe Sessions

The morning opens with clouds
soaked in bleach
                              the silk of apprehension
              slippery breath
                                                & the exploding beer can

the flowers like god on fire
              the fingers of palm trees
                              stained by the sun
                                                drowning in a spoonful of
                                                                                                wet sand

in the hollow
greenblue tapestry
held together by threads of rust

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Gone Again (& Again)

I can see & hear it all tenderly collapse
floating past another bloodshot afternoon
the purple yonder, the empty bottle,
the sting of euphoria
like playing the guitar backwards
a subtle buzz parked in the middle of nowhere
as I can feel her hips repeat themselves
& the sky tipping back in her eyes
all smoke-rings & chrome

Friday, October 10, 2008

Aztec Two-Step

Scratching out a cloud of cigarette smoke
you can see God but mistake him for
something that creases the parking lot
when you really want to snip out the heart of
surrender, the Big Deal, zero hour,
riding off into the test pattern
dropping a token into the wave machine
anybody’s guess indebted to neon
& a butterfly drum voice in the dark

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Paper Submarine

Something I was supposed to do got done
none of it really finished
interrupted by the neighbor’s bagpipe playing,
              airplanes coming in too low off the beach,
telephone calls I never answered,
                              tribal umbrellas,
                                                buzz-whistles & bells,
              the zig-zag loop hidden in a straight line,
                              & your necklace of
enough to make a grown man
              cop to habits that may be spiritual
                              but you wouldn’t know it to look at the
                                                                pacific coast highway
                                                on a Thursday afternoon
                                                                                    in Octumble
                              (a temporary coral blossom
adrift expecting the exact center of autumn
                                                                albacore sky, roaring water
              a list of things to do fluttering to the ground
like a blank sheet of sunset

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Feels Like a Shadow

feathered headdress (Aztec, Hawaiian, Celtic)

Egyptian bird head, Kwakiutl bird mask
the civilized world ended circa 1000 A.D.?
give or a take a week or so

Dealing seeds & mushrooms
out the back of a late model Ford station wagon

what do I know…seven ways from Sunday last

Asian jungle temples reclaimed by a silence you can
find in the ruins of any amusement park

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Del Laguna

Anytime soon a
step or two from where we are
the wind speaking an ancient dialect
as it would be revealed
the message hidden among those steel-plate
                              chrysanthemums I sent you
              like several tons of rusty scrap metal
                                                falling over the edge of my brain
the same way the sky fell over itself
              tripped up by a cloud or a guitar string
& I swore sleepwalkers were lining up
                              to take pot-shots at bricks of rain
the horses spooked by what the eucalyptus didn’t say
dark pacific swamp mirrors shattered in the sun
a last breath a tunnel of light
                              a trapdoor in the surf
              what you held & I let go of
where midnight cracks the tide
& bottles full of sand

Monday, October 6, 2008

Goodbye, Dirty Machine (part 59)

Five years previous I had lived a summer on the island of Maui with Gas Daney and his girlfriend & that experience was my shell-cradle break into the Sea—having grown up in landlocked Colorady—but I was still on the surface there, swimming with good mountain boy fear of what lurked underneath in the deep stuff...but here, with my own mother as teacher, I had conquered the deeps, the lulling blue deeps of runaway fright and I could barely get enough...this is what passed for my time...this is what had replaced city 8-5 hurry...this was the way I needed it to be...this is how I kept Ramona alive...and then Dean Sharpe showed up.

Certain people carry the past and abide forever in it.   They bring you back to your very state of mind, down to the cells whirling and continuity, of what possessed you so many years ago...Dean & I shared a circuit that had high school round-ball in common...from opposing sides of town his ego sought mine... And I could tell of the thousand ripe adventures I had since with this guy, most occurring over the three years we saw each other daily from September to June...and most involving a form of debauchery with the womankind...

But his folks, ahem, were quite well-off from mysterious father businesses in Vermont and they had built some sort of compound up-island from San Pedro where the buildings were few and the breeze lonely... my friends and I had been hearing about it for years, but most of us hadn’t made it down to visit despite Dean’s many generous offers laced with the element of bizarre futures... but here I was, just moments from their personal pier...This strange family always reminded me of a favorite passage of ecclesiastes:

I made me great works; I builded me houses;
                I planted me vineyards;
I made me gardens and orchards;  (here esp because the old man
                              loved to create lush landscapes
                              wherever he lived)
                and I planted trees in them with all kinds of fruit.
        I made me pools of water, to water therewith
                the wood that bringeth forth trees.
        I gathered me also silver and gold, and
                the peculiar treasure of kings and of the provinces.
        And whatsoever mind eyes desired
                I kept not from them,
        I withheld not my heart from any joy,
                for my heart rejoiced in all my labour,
and this was my portion of all my labour.
        Then I looked on all the works
                that my hands had wrought,
        and on the labour I had laboured to do,
        and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit,
        and there was no profit under then sun.

-Michael Price

Duane Eddy Mows His Lawn

Open range cactus surf dramas
born of the sea & coastal fogs
                                                a liquid territory
                              landing with a THUD
                                                as opposed to a SPLASH
              outside the realm of these
                              Byzantine street hassles

no difference between ocean & air here
“Voice of the Rolling Tide”
                              as Mike says thinking of the
                                                Gnostic Worm?

& who knows how many other worlds we’ll
have to destroy . . .

I dive into the damp shadow at my
              feet & wind up embalmed in concrete

Sunday, October 5, 2008

John Wayne Meets Geronimo (A Latin Masque)

The Scene:   A dusty cantina somewhere near the border of Arizona & Mexico.   John Wayne enters.   Geronimo is drinking mescal at the bar.

GERONIMO - In vino veritas.
JOHN WAYNE - Age quod agis.
GERONIMO - Credat judaeus Apella, non ego.
JOHN WAYNE - Eventus stultorum magister.
GERONIMO - In pace requiescat.

They stand there staring at one another while Buddy Holly's That'll Be The Day plays on the jukebox.

                  [The Latin is lifted from that great Roman revenge tragedy Tombstone, starring Kurt Russell & Val Kilmer]

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Sea Level Brain Drain

Long arcing rollers
gliding in on the high tide

Sunlight all broken up on the surface
a bazillion pieces of chrome flashing along the
pulse of it

The locals just paddle through teardrops

look the other way

Beach barbeque in the rock garden
with drugs, Mex beer
& a dark blood cognac
              which they say can either inspire
              Prophetic Dreams
                              or leave you stranded
              in a dark corner of your mind
                                                trying to remember
                              how you got there

Friday, October 3, 2008

Slow Dance

She wants a pillbox hat & a trip to Nepal,
a sunset appaloosa with gilt edges,
a mail-bomb cocktail, Mexican silver & Chinese jade

but all I can give her is an empty
mirror on the shadow side of the beach
& all the rust I can manage to
scrape off my heart

Her eyes are like a glass of water at three in the morning

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Drawn Blank

Sleep out on the sand
wake up with your throat cut

all in a day’s work

shake the dust of any number of places
& hit out on the highway
IDEAS (a list of painkillers)

feed the cats
open all the windows
all the doors
let the day inside
feed the brain bone

wake up & feel like
cutting your own throat

a way of testing reality (in Sanskrit)

compared to the way words get
welded to things like ideas

scrawled in blood on a counterfeit sunset


You'll dig the measure, the sly humor and the sledgehammer accuracy of this sweet suite of 13 poems.

Cover by Kevin Opstedal.
5.25” x 8”, saddle-stitched.   $7.00
Available from Blue Press.

reflecting on a line by Apollinaire
as amended by James Brook

you are weary of this ancient world at last
and the modern one, too

If you are reasonably
and have
traveled abroad
you have
probably crouched
at the gates
of some ancient wonder
after closing
time and had
a few beers with some
incredibly stupid Australians

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

In the Ever

Let me unravel a thread of smoke
somewhere other than
where we found ourselves lately

tasting the air this afternoon

                              Where did this cold wind come from?

(rattle leaves & dust
petals, flesh, bones
              faded slightly pictures of Baja

as things could possibly fit together
                                                                visible or not
                              where that music went
to customize the gods
empty Coke bottle beer can
                                                early late afternoon

STOMP CITY         warp & ruin         blankness
as one could signify

blasted on tequila & kool-aid