Month: April 2015

Undergraduated

He had Saint Vincent in his ears.
Opening the door to the arts building,
his home for 5 years & just 2 more weeks.

He talked to every professor who for
at least a semester had become a hero,
an ambassador to something he’d secretly
(always) assumed was beyond his grasp.

He sat in the light of room 3018.
It was his favorite room. He was
unsure, if this was because his arm
bore a tattoo that said “f8”
from his 18 year old
dream of writing in a few strokes
to the overall litany and canon,

or because he had met the Englishwoman
who gave him the power to read Hardy,
Dickens, Austen and even Gaskill,

He wrote that night all across the city.
He made the best of everything.

It was practically art, already.
He just had to kiss it off his palm.

& Go.

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Birthday Non-Poem.

This is not a poem (this is a birthday)

I don’t even know how I got here.
But here we are.
I think I remember you most from graphic memoir.
Which is strange because I was hate then.
I had no love for anyone.
I mean I certainly doodled it.
But I was wack.
I thought in tones of technicolour.
(I kept the U in there on purpose, btw)
I thought the world was Diane or Rebecca.
(Those are characters from Cheers. You’re too young to get it… maybe?)
The point being I was still hazy on women being anything but caricatures.

I got trapped in that male strip. (kept that joke in, intentionally)
I lived it over and over.
I got jealous.
Made up excuses.
She’s got it easy.
Because she’s pretty.

I knew I had met my match with that year.

I met a black radicalist, who taught me, finally, about my privilege,
male and white.
She echoed the power of my adult high school teacher,
who had taught arc welding, poetry, and even the children of schizophrenia.
She told me for every one frown you had to give 10 smiles.
My new friend was harsh on me when I needed it, just like her on my essays.

Neither of them saw me as anything but a chance to change,
however insignificantly in the larger ocean,
a single rivulet of a stream.

When I think back to it, Mom was the first rebel who taught me that power.
Before John Lennon and Morrison and De La Rocha.
(capitalize it on purpose, again…)

It makes little sense; this quest to understand real beauty.
To actually be a genuine soul.

Thanks for helping along that way; in no matter how insignificant a turn, blessed are any of us who learn anything that naturally.

And happy fucking birthday, kid.

Rocked

The Promises
.
I wrote your name on beach rocks.
It took me all summer but I made sure to cover
a decent plot of the coastline
so you would find it attached to mine.
You could keep your name, we could both hyphenate.

I laughed.

I wrote your name in swirling fonts.
I added hearts.
I was sick.
I knew we were never meant to be.
But I practiced the dangerous devotion
of all early love in a man’s hands.

Just like when, at 12, I knew
Steven King was meant to adopt me.
He just had to meet me, hear my stories, and
I planned it all out. A T-bone over the high iron gates,
to distract his Rottweiler’s.

I buried a dream or too as well,
but they were mostly muffled screams
and kisses that got lost in the rain
on a night when a baby fox watched us
making love,
and it was too beautiful afterward
to ever think about more than once
every major life shift occurred.

I learned the calligraphy of tired and high
and over-excited bodies in beautiful folds
and creases, sleeping in what is impossible
yet never even for an instant awkward.

I rolled a joint from a Bible’s page once,
with honey and desire.

I swore it was the last time
I lent out my papers at life’s many parties.