Philosophy

Aphorisms for the Ugly White Page

For two and a half hours I stared at you,
you sexy white thing. You endless white thing,
you blank, ugly fucking whore
of a blank, white, single screen.

I wonder what you were thinking
while I was tripping over a closet of memories
like a black out at a party
while everyone rummages to smoke outside
in someone else’s shoes.

Like people about to go down in a ship.

My step father rolling his oversized
cotton sleeves in messy pastry mixing up with the
coffee stained back office of his garage and the
coffee in white Styrofoam,

creating a place where none existed before,
but where nothing but smell and longing
are able to say enough in their statement.

There was good in here but it was
only ever enough to keep warm, singly by.

Even the character feels weak and goes head-first
into a plate of glass as some bad homage to something.
Not even the reference seems worth it.

But we do it anyway don’t we?
It’s the only dedicated relationship I have,
so it has to be like this sometimes.

Even when there is nothing to say,
we have to live like this.

I know you don’t like me when I write to Miles Davis,
but I do it anyway.

You know I veer toward a schedule only for you
to smash it into new mosaic.

But we work together somehow.

We block out the blindness,
bad line after cliché after shaky reservation.

We work in record stores and on buses and other random,
non-momentary states.

Got married back in high school.

Have nothing but boxes of us now.

Boxes and ticket stub match pack haiku’s.

Ann’I still love you now, for every
new white fucking page.

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being a writer is like

like always asking “what was I just thinking”
but never coming up with the thing
and just continually finding ways to divert from that fact
until no longer the case for a minute or two Halleluiah plays in your key
and you hush all eyes with kindness and grace until
again you are back out in the alley with
the rest of the human smoke

being a writer is
like being a child trapped in a
big world body
that ripples with the moon
and crescents with the sun

intermittently dances like a naked
French weather girl
up some mountain because
gender roles or not,

poetry is always like
being in love with the most
beautiful one in the room for you
and me too, so stop yelling.

I am trying to get you over the exhausting
cringe of not getting the miracle in our every movement here.

It has nothing to do with class or gender or hero,
just listen, you need to know this;

it is just when the story becomes too big to contain,
that it really stars getting good.

onward ho, bitches.
(Jesse Pinkman style)

we only have about a day’s parenthesis head start,
and the Sheriff’s of Sonnet and Formality will be upon us.

They will yoke us in genre and codify our scarred wings.

Won’t we be less then we were without this woe?

Credits Deux

The music of hurt
brought to you by the misery
of conviction
now a subsidiary of
the lie police who,
like it or not
have got your number.

Kicking stones along
the empty John Carpenter streets,
singing Happy Halloween with
Silver Shamrock masks.

Ripping through verses of a variety
of obscure poets can wait, we need
to deal with the waning booze situation.

The courage to belt out Arcade Fire
3 am, rooftops everywhere,
they are calling it some kind of cult,
but you know the rule of haters.

This kiss was brought to you
by Gibran, Jack’s and a sweet look
you gave me 8 summers ago.

Girl in the rain, boy in the blue
kid in the crowd,

talking to you,
just you,
and you.

Come here, into the center of the thing.

Credit where it’s due.

This Is Goodbye (Poem for the Girl I called Olivia Wilde)

You are Blue Foundation
that song that grips the sublime contusion
and makes it sing.
You are the very shallow thought
I have had since 12

rolled up into the redeemed power of a star
a kiss
a dance move previously unknown
I rest my heart on the thought of you
despite us having known nothing of one another.

It is in the casual way you answer a question.
With a buried sense of delicate hope to be taken seriously and not
seen for nervous you are, like all of us, like that.

I have no idea if you know it but
you can learn a lot about a person
through details.

You are a smile away from staling my every sunshine filled day
and replacing them in terms of valuation.

You are a clinical yes you are going to live
in the face of dreams all week of terrible terminality.

I may have given many poems
to many beautiful people in my life so far,

but each one remains special,
and you are no different,

aka
you are.

Wild.
Before my eyes.

Wild.

Desperate Times

Film-Speak

 

(Poem for Kiddo)

 

They need a word for

that moment where

you have a Saturday with

nothing left to re-watch

but “A Return to Salem’s Lot”

and, like, fuckin’,

The Stepfather,

and you can’t bring yourself

to watch Michael  Moriarty

single handedly hold it together

like Marlowe with an ex wife.

 

And another for that

moment when Willis re: 12 Monkeys,

where he’s bleeding out

in front of his child self

who also is Jim Morrison in The Doors

and Garrison’s kid in JFK, incidentally.

Dwelling Within

We would explode some nights.
I was such a terrible friend.
I’ve never deserved any of them
and that is especially the case for
those that invited me into their lives most.

He was like most in the fact
that he could control
and lose control of himself
no matter how much he drank
and snorted and fucked, he never
lost his “wind cut suave”.

That was one of our sayings.
We have thousands now.
Knowing us is like reading
A Clockwork Orange
without the dictionary at the back.

I’ve cursed at him a blue streak.
He’s pummeled me or threatened worse
with a single, well-known look.

We talked about our poetry,
we laughed about everything,
mocked everything sacred,
defied every sense of decorum.

Drank the well dry.
Snapping back and forth,
we started an art between us.

Like a demon it grew to undermine
even our modest attempts at control.

When she left me he calmed me down
and rationalized me with a stern talk.

I was in a state. I had whipped my
baby blue typewriter at a wall and
sworn off love of any kind. I was drunk.

When the drugs crept into me and
I was a marionette on fire, he grabbed me
and shook me back into a state with which
I could at least understand my ultimatums.

When I forget with a heavy dose of hate,
my obligation to write, it is always his words
which fulfill my need for inspiration.
I won’t let anyone get the last ones.
Not even you, old friend.

Especially you.

One day we will skirt through
New York in a limo
rails and some dj bl3nd playing.

One day, film
an entire scene of our banter
with all parenthesis included
in off beat,
quick turn to another camera angle
hahaha,
yes.

Can You Do It?

Can you do it?

It is 2002 in BC, somewhere the ghosts of that night still haunt.

She went around the hotel and
asked if any of us knew Johnny
and none of us did all we knew
was fix and formula
to get some more
but she went around anyway
really just hoping to run into
anyone even a new
Johnny.

It feels like House of the Rising Son
is always playing in some room.
The hallways are all slanted.
I could be in the movie The Doors right now
when the boys meet The Velvet Underground,
but I am not and it smells like piss and sweat and cunt,
altogether, in one stank, rank miasma of odor.

But I am alive and there is some rock left in the room
past the bitch crying into a microphone
and the one filled with darkness and eyes,
and I can taste it now, covering me in sweats
and dry, insipid heart beatings, and I am there,
whenever I get caught off guard by someone on
some corner in some shitty bad place, I am there.

And then, I am not.

It is still the same cracked out place I am sure,
and the bulldozers when they finally do take it,
a plume of soul smoke will erupt in the air like Poltergeist.

She went around the place
like some dour, damsel or Susanna,
finishing the corner of every ladle,
but the corner eats everything too long
left around it, a whirlpool that leaves tragedies
hungrier than she is, before she shuts down.

She looked at me that one night
and out of nowhere asked,
pointing at the crumb on the floor,

Can you do it?

People Love Puppies

It is morning and you
cannot tell me you
are happy to be outside
in the sunshine
not if you are like me
and you stay up later
and sip beer and tap at keys.

There is no coffee shop
jazz smooth enough
to straighten your
knotted neck, and a light
but effective sharp jab
of pain around the temple region
is just praying you try
and focus on the screen
or a page or anything
that is not a puppy.

The patrons are all
gathered around one,
a baby black thing that
is going to be loud
and annoying before it dies
and leaves the family
in shaky tearful messes
on the floor, and not
before it leaves a couple
hundred runny sloppy ones,
to step in still warm,
to curse at while half gagging
on the mysteriously pungent
stank that manages
to come out of
a toy bred ball of fur
and teeth and drool.

But that’s it, nothing
you can do about it-
you cannot stop them
before falling in love.

What can be done?
People love puppies.

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.

My Own Private Iola

I will stop
thinking about you
in your doc martens
and your blue bomber
in 1997,

when something comes down
with a monkey wrench
from heaven

and beats it all
out of me
for good.

For good, the bad
go hungrier for
longer than any of the
God-mammals could
ever last for.

Up our Jerusalem sleeves,
we set the records to skip
back, to the same spot
dropping the needle
again and again
into a bucket of silence.

I can’t get out of the
meta-universe
she is a pleasure to have
as a curse.

Put the posters back up,
get me a job at some
fast death food market

and eat my fingers
out from under themselves
every night, in-between
chapters like the very
Spy vs Spy that first
entertained me

more than the central prose,
the para-text is a devious,
blazing star you cannot

scrape off like gum
on your spokes,
you cannot eliminate like
Constantine blood on your Keds.

This is the ugliest in a set of three poems,
these are the stones thrown at the stoned.

You are my first fist,
clutching my first page.

Crumpling up the demons,
wrapping up our moments,
it is like getting ready
for X-mas in Hell.

But it is still better than
letting go, completely
of that story.