Dime Store Hoodlum

Swigging, the Light Fantastic

Give me one more big fucking swig.

I want to leap out of a window some days.
It is nothing special.
I am not infected with anything,
it is just the slow drawl of truth,
giving you what for,
while you wash the whole
floor of the library, with your eye.

I want to creep into the auditorium
and rip out all the seats
and force everyone to dance
at every event
even dog shows
even hockey
even pope visits
and especially pope visits,
but crunking, all of us, dry humping
to his slicked back religioso.

I want to sing in the basement of the madhouse
with my headphones duck taped to my ears
so they can never break me out of my routine,
not easily, you’ll never take me
from my own mad shuffle,
without a fight,
without some scratching,

and some twitching,
and some devil tongue,
and some downright tongue.

I want to eat all of the spirit.
I want to fuck on tombstones and in catacombs.
I want to piss my name in the snow of your culture.

I will be the prisoner out in the yard,
collecting rocks,
making a crude chess set,
trying to learn a new way to say fate,
producing a work that is
half scream,
half tune.

Give me one big swig,
and you can have me
for another day here.
I will close the window,
quit the dance and find
my own way home.

Just give me that bottle.
Give me five minutes of your time.
Give me your first born.
Give me your Jack and
I’ll give you my Queen.

I still have the black one
up my sleeve for later anyway.

Give up already,
we’re already 9 floors down,
and 18 more to go.

Get ready for the finish,
it has nothing to do with circularity.

I wanted to give you one last
echo is all.

Is that not what you longed
for from them all?

Just one reverberating kiss
to guide your final ascent?

Or would you like to come along,
have some fun beneath?

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She Took My Hat

I danced with a girl in the mud once.
It was sloppy. Our feet made schlepping noises
as we strove to disengage them from each
wet, mucky step. It was like fly paper for flies.

I remember she had this big, brilliant smile like
a clown the whole time, there for my amusement.
At some point she absconded with my salt and pepper cap,
like it’s an old skipper hat black and white freckled in color,
not the hip hop all female act, Salt n Peppa.

Nobody would ever steal that shit.

Women have always been good at stealing my hats.
There was my “New York Fuckin’ City” black with white letter,
a ball hat I cherished a gift from my aunt.
Lost that one in a hospital after a friend of
a friend od’d on E like the first night I met him,
and I forever the Gordie Lachance, went along
in the ambulance along with some random blonde.

What her deal was I am not sure.
Ambulance chaser in a skirt?
I couldn’t have been any more blind.
I tried my classic lean in on her in the elevator but
she was just in love with that hat. And she got it.
Didn’t even cost her a kiss.

I’m such a lush for people.
I’ll take anything you have.
A word exchanged in an empty hospital bed,
in the dark, where nobody is around,
or a deep muddy dance to George Clinton
on some old abandoned air strip.

My fedora in 2011.
Liberated by a wild night at
some after hours bar.
Another two skipper caps at least in BC.

It’s really been a pleasure though.
Who the fuck am I kidding?

It is not

for KW

It is not for you, it is for me
to walk the streets at all hours still
and sing a little, maybe a dance move or too even
if I feel especially on the end of it all,
I’ll weep uncontrollably.

It is just when I am off the stuff for “a few”,
even text the old Argentine “Yeah no drink till June”
that he’ll get a dozen garbled after-texts
which barely make any sense at all.

Well, if they were from anyone
but me,
that is.

It is not you kicking cop cars and slipping them the finger
before running. Unless you’re one of my cohorts.
In which case you’re likely also wielding a trumpet,
the car is likely on fire, the police are likely, confused and
powerless.

I thought of him the other night
when CTV National exposed some random stories,
one where a rape chant originated at my old University.

One about a strange incident in Parry Sound,
in which dozens of Garden Gnomes,
stolen over a period of time, or was it one night?

Who can be sure, they were all lined up in a parking lot,
though
that much is for sure, all in rows, neat and uniform
and giddy and frolicking

like they didn’t give a fuck,
like nobody had abducted them at all,
like, well, foolish garden Gnomes look,
is all.

It reminded me of the great Gnome slaughter of ’98.
I wish I could remember it.
Like King and Salem’s Lot,
some of the demons are yours but
you can never get un-got.

It is not me I seek in the mad ones I have
followed, like weird news-reel made real,
it is within me, that I hope to share even a shard
of them, like a Skesis trying to get a Gelfling,
in Dark Crystal, to sell him some
more soul.

Some more time, to live in digital youth.
Let’s dance tonight, on the old downtown roof.
The one from the past, all sticky with truth.
I’ve got a story for you, that nobody else will
get but you, & just have
to hear what happened next.

I’ve got a story and
it is not
for anyone else.

Love Letters from The Heat

    Dear internet, fuck you.
    When I think of all the time
    I couldve much better spent
    eating my own feces,
    or destroying an ant hill,
    or bleeding to death under the stars,

    it makes me so mad,
    I could sky dive without a proper pack,
    or devour fire ants through a sive,
    or chuckle to death in some wild drug fit.

    Dear internet anything is better than
    getting a high score,
    on a face book game,
    and auto-inviting and auto-annoying
    a dozen or so friends afterward.

    Makes me feel like
    spitting blood while casting a shadow,
    and humming the Blade Runner theme,
    while walking into a plate of glass, into a
    vat of beer and dying, drunk,
    cursing you in every language, like
    Neo with the drunk kick boxing, like
    it was downloaded into me,
    some sort of Pulse-like demon,
    internet- fuck you – I’m going back
    to the movies
    and a comic book or two.

    Dear internet, how about another drink.
    I left my keys in your sink the
    dinner is on the table, just as well…

    let’s spend the night together
    fuck it.
    There is nobody else
    out there
    anymore
    in the streets
    its like
    Surrogates
    or worse
    The four-hundered and fifty first
    farenheit, even.

    Dear internet give me back the
    prison of my books
    and give me Berlin bricks
    from shitty strip malls
    if not the garden give me the
    hose curled up and eating itself.

    Something to see outside in the day,
    give me a reason not to click
    another four hours
    on to the road
    a million dimes
    for stories could
    be sold.

    Give me a hitch-itchy finger
    that dissolves in the mousey mess
    like salt
    dropped
    into it,

    Let me have the keys I am leaving you.
    Let me have the keys I am stealing
    away from you.

    I want all my empty eyes back
    I want my friend to come and pick me up
    I want to go home
    internet,

    you’ve got me all Hurly Burly
    in my morning pants
    you’ve got me scurvy
    carpal tunnel and a handful
    of other surf related diseases.

    I might have gone on to be somebody.

    I might have gotten out of this backseat.

    I was in many rooms,
    and there were teachers and
    counsellors
    and even some lovers
    and the rain
    and the kisses
    they were suits
    I wore.

    I was good.

    I was always good, trying to be better.

    Internet, give back Cobain’s diary,
    at least the stuff about his divided life,
    the one of books and thoughts and the one TV brought.

    Internet, get off my back.
    I’m going home with Anna Karenina tonight,
    and you should be jealous.

    Read and weep.

    Read, and Weep.

Dancing Story Man On Corner, Begging

Pacing on one foot at a time, like he
was in the chamber that helps you stop smoking in Cats Eye.

Like electrically charged atoms, dancing to Mozart.
Like a busted up whore, tripping on too many Benzes.
Like a kite, free from its master.
Like a master, free from his shackles.
Like the token black guy, in Blazing Saddles.

“Got chore stories here-e-e-e-e-e-e!
Step right up!
Poem for a dollar on the theme of your choosing!
Page a blank prose for 5! 3 for 10 people!
Come one! Come all!”

He has one for the bored housewife.
It starts out boring like a Harlequin.
And jumps by page 5.

(She was a multiple personality of a soap star.
This is why her lines had been so bad, so far.)

He has one for the boy that lived down the lane.
About a mission to drive all the drivers of the world, insane.

(The final page is on fire, smells of burning rubber
and sounds like the dancing of brick walls breaking out from under a fender)

“How about one about a detective whose cases all blend into one perp,
Turns out all along he’s been hunting God!”

He twists and turns on his feet all day.
At night he looks out his small, underwater window

Looks like Nicola Tesla, head arched back.
Looks like a more peaceful Stanley Kowalski.
Like a playing card.
Like a saint.

Like me.

Fuck This Job

I know he was Korean because he always took the time,
after insulting me in his native tongue, to translate.

“You know what I just said? I said
‘You Are a Useless Fuck’ in Korean!
That’s what I said.”

He would actually get on like that.
His life seemed to be pretty empty;
divorce had him haemorrhaging cash,
he barely saw his son, and he was always
miserable and convinced employees were stealing.

(this was exacerbated by the fact that the lead bartender,
some guy form Barrie, who gave me a job after I showed up
there and spent 100 dollars on Absinthe, was indeed ripping him
off, and good, for quite some time before I showed, then he quit.)

And he left me in his place to do a job I was untrained to do,
instead my training consisting of a long prolonged Korean lesson
or two, each time I attempted to do anything- serve or cook or clean,
and he would watch me, and wait until I needed to be told “No”.

This all only went on about a month, until I finally pissed him off
and he fired me, but not before I threw a glass of Absinthe
at his wall and told him to go fuck himself, in English,
using my hands in non-official ASL to even translate this lament.

Back then, anyone who insulted me in the workplace got a similar
farewell. I could go through 3 jobs a week in BC and never run out
of terribly oppressive managers to tell the same to. It was great fun.

I guess my super power that counter acted this villainy is that I did
bust my ass pretty good for the kind and generous few who taught
me better words, and received in return similar encouraging.

If you treat yourself
like you deserve
to be told off in
any language
you will universally
be saying to those
you encounter that
you are worthless.

You need to know when to say
“Fuck this job, and you as well”
in the universal tongue.

And that’s what the old fucker taught me.

He would hold after hours parties at his club
and all the young girls would flirt with him for drinks
and I figured that was pathetic and I felt kind of sad for
him just before I looked at him smiled, slammed what was to be my
last Absinthe at Tribeca on Georgia, and heaved it in his direction.

That stuff always did bring out my inner Bolshvik.

Must Be Nice

Enough?

I Don’t Understand This,
you say, you’ve had enough?
Of the stuff?

I’ve never heard of this “too much”.
It sounds pretty fucked.
Like, why would you be at in the
first place if you could’ve said no to start?

Like, how you gonna shit on addicts
when you can’t experience that your
self. Like, how many rejects you

think it takes, to get a Hunter Thompson
or an Irvine Welsh?

It takes millions to produce nation
and one mutant to tell them all
“Go to Fuck”

It’s like a feeling of satisfaction
you say, and I would love
to empathize
but I’ve done, would do
anything in a bag
any size
any way any time
when I was laid back
in the dark of that shine.
That “Mine.Mine.Mine.”

What the FUCK is enough?
Never had it,
Not one time.

But you enjoy the comfort,
That shit sounds divine.

Shit WILL Get Ugly

You know what I am expecting in terms of my writing life?

To struggle. Big time.
To weep some mornings,
to scream and jump on the page
and shit on it too.

I am expecting nothing less
but an all out assault
on my every dream
and whim and fancy,
a degrading of my soul
down from terror-child
to the next level shit
that makes my worst nights
on blow look like a merry go
round populated by innocent
and perfect children, among other
constructs that don’t really exist.

I am expecting to have my
intestines engorged by more liquor,
to have my heart pumped of every
good thought or inclination I ever had,
to lay in at least a few more piles
of my own shit and vomit and piss
and tears and even a bit of blood.

I plan on things getting dirtier, more
disgusting and depraved than my limited
spectrum of sin in youth could’ve envisioned,
but often tried during come-down and came up with
a vast and seemingly infinite farmers field
filled with burning foetus’ each ones scream like
a Tool track played backwards while someone’s
getting raped in the back ground by a demonic monkey.

I am counting on the constant reminder
that I am on my path too.

The kicks in the face from the angels
of distraction; vice and sex and the murder
of clean thought by divine dancing.

I am ready for the next 25 years,
then to get bitter and fat and angry and old.
I am ready to look like Bukowski and feel like him,
to fuck away a dozen hotel whores a year
in to the oblivion of my charred, gingery bastard’s soul.

I am expecting the next generation to become
like a mongoloid to me, ugly and barren of anything
but my fear and my oscillating thyroid,
my evaporating liver, my incongruently toppled spine.

All of it.

Except giving up, packing it in, giving in,
letting go, stopping, resisting the scratch
and scrawl and type and tap and trickle
and rush and flood of word flow.

Fuck that weakness, and silence and parting of ways.
I’ll save my last good lines for my eulogy, a litany of
Highways crossed, skies divided, universe wiped clean
Of each other’s eye-stars.

I’ll still be there scrawling, sure.

Meanwhile, Back at the Glass Cabin…

(for R.E. and M.W.)

Up until now, I only understood my old friend in passing. I mean I knew his type of (or rather what I until now regarded to be) his type of cynic. Or even a passive aggressive way of dealing with the acceptance of legions upon legions of things one knows today that readers of Dickens’s serials didn’t likely have to bear the weight of. I’d get drunk and pick arguments that had no real conclusion, knowing he would say the same things he said, and I would say the things he said. And I would feel smug, and then shameful for thinking that of someone so important to me. There are certain voices in your life that might take you a decade to hear properly, but when you do you have one of those synchronistic clashes of a bunch of things like at the end of Signs. Except creepier because I actually do bear resemblance to the scariest 2 seconds of an alien apparently, ever.

“It’s always been bad. Have you read the Canterbury Tales? Shit has always been bad, but I believe people will figure it out. They always have.”

Then I would go on about some new internet sensation, something about Monsanto or Bees (but nothing so ridiculous as the last parts of The Happening), and we’d always end up at the same seeming loggerhead. Recently I found the center of that kernel budding in me, and much like the cocoon-gestation state for the baby face biters of Ridley Scott’s far superior, (pre-Prometheus puritan right here) Alien/s series, the early life of what I will call the “letting go of fictional friction” because I see now that is what it all is. Fiction.

Even if the government is out to get you, what good is it to run around like Charlie Sheen with your crack cut off?

Our fear for the future is a frictional fiction, something we invent to justify whatever we need to, in order to survive in body and mind. This shouldn’t be mistaken for the real kind of change people pursue as a result of the need for change, like reducing ones footprint or recycling (unless you worship at the church of Pen & Teller’s bulls**t) or any number of proactive tings people are doing in hordes nowadays, like the kid in Pay it Forward Because people can do things in a calm way, a collective way, after being presented with facts and proof, and logical and sane practices in presenting them. But nobody ever changed the world with worry or the worrying of all around them. No matter of scare-mongering or chicken little-fretting ever really amounts to anything, except antagonizing one’s community. State your concerns, write them out, act them out, film them or sing them or scream them to the nearest mountain (like all those terrible Scripturama’s, or even the occasional gem), and let it be, like the song, the sentiment and the necessary sacrament to the acceptable social cues and norms.

Because otherwise you’re just waiting for someone to teach you a similar lesson. Like at the end of Rudy when the coach got the ole “we are all Spartacus” treatment. Nobody left in the Western hemisphere is going to benefit from being grabbed by the proverbial shoulders’ every day and called a “sheeple” told the sky is poison and the government is under their boogeyman beds (like Howie Mandel before the germ thing in Little Monsters).

You know what? People need solutions. People need a hundred more Venus Projects before one finally sticks, they need engineers busting their assess and they need to understand how rigged the democratic system is. They can learn all this in morsel like bits of earth shattering info, but I have yet to see anyone in my life take to the kind of fervent, snake-oil hucksterism of most extremist conspiracy nuts (Alex Jones, et al.) when they pound the same points in daily, in some effort to – for all I can seem to interpret- ascertain some level of control in their lives. Join Greenpeace. Sell your car. Dig wells. Plant trees. Garden. And yes, collectively mobilize. But there’s no need for Jerry Maguire tactics. “Gee you know, that maniac in the street daily screaming about chemtrails dear, I think we should really heed his prophesies of doom, don’t you?” – said but nobody rational, ever.

And I for one stopped reading a bulk of the more preposterous links. I don’t benefit from that kind of hyperbolic mindset even if its 80 percent true. Why? It’s gaudy, that’s why. Yeah I said it, I like my philosophy like I like my women, presented clearly and cleanly in fresh, and inviting formats. I don’t go for the bottom of the barrel assholes like David Icke and Jones et al. I’m sorry. That’s not how you win friends, and it is only how you DISASSOCIATE good people form learning anything. So from now on I read nothing that’s hackneyed and ridiculous, unless it’s my own poetry during the dreadful next day scan, like buddy with his Kublai Kahn in Pandemonium.  If it has some level of professionalism and doesn’t simply reiterate the Alex Jones “They Are All Part of One Grand (I’m kind of off my meds so I see grander patterns than usual) Insidious Plot of Illuminati”, then I just scroll on, brothers and sisters. Unless it’s Unsolved Mysteries, I have a soft spot for that level of “professional” terribleness it imprinted in childhood. Perhaps that’s why I have trouble taking people seriously that present facts like Sean Penn high on blow in Hurly Burly mid-rant.

Old friend if you are out there, know that I acknowledge it. You were right. It’s never THAT fucking bad. People will rally, and shit will get fixed, or it won’t. No need getting out of your groove over it, right? Besides how else are we ever going to get to see a post-apocalyptic world where you can buy peoples experiences on the black market like Strange Days, if it doesn’t keep on truckin’ right? We already have Juliette Lewis primed as a singer for it too…

I guess what I’m saying is, I would rather talk movies, than hollah at the masses so often, they fail to listen when I finally do, Marvel and Greek God’s forbid, say something. Leave the slaughterhouse to the task of setting about chickens sans top, now and again. It’s been happening since Chaucer and will long after “Mr. Vickers” aka “The Heff” aka “Ginger” et al.

Dedicated to the Spirit of Film Friendships,

Namely Mr. Ebert

(and the sock puppets formerly known as Theodore and Roosevelt)