Postmodernism

The Nothing and My Statue

I want to tell you
about the nothing
and how it was on my back
from late 90s to just now.

My first time was
just a six pack
of coca cola I was
12 maybe 13,

and I was up all night
with the caffeine propping up
my stinging eyes like,
twitchy invisible insect germs,
holding up heavy red curtains.

I used it to get more comic books read.
It gave me the strength to watch
entire nights of reruns.

I moved onto vodka pretty
much the next summer.
Because it made me think I was
an extrovert and a revolutionary,
and because Val Kilmer drank
as Jim Morrison and I wanted to
be a rebel like him.

I always sounded more like
the Lizard King after some drinks.
It was like the liquid gave me skill.

First pack of smokes found
in The Beer Store parking lot on
Chopin Street in Preston.
They bought me the prison yard acceptance
of first year high school.

I smoked more green any man ever seen,
we had something called wheelchair pot and
I laughed at the sky.

Our crew donned Value Village polyester and
tie dyes from local hemp shops.
We slunk through corn field grids
like eager pony tailed lab rats,
hunting down the cheese of
some wheat kings secret plants.
Dried them out in our parents rafters,
sold the shit for better stuff.

Drank a bottle of Robitussin
because some raver chick in
funfer pink told me it was like Acid,
which was hard to come by and
always made me feel like Neo,
even before The Matrix came out.

My first line was the last thing I
ever put on my back,
through my nose.

I say first because it’s all
the same line,
one massive one that stretches from
a cramped apartment on St. Andrew’s hill,
winds through the jungle of a hundred
dirty stalls, stripper’s breasts, mirror and
chipped dinner plates.

I earned a twitch in the final years,
when I would go for days at a time,
I can’t quite tell you
for too long about it
without risking the
abyss taking me back
you have to take my word
you have nothing
to lose by gaining better ground
in this war,
you lose only your mind when you
play the game with the Nothing,
the nothing,
the not-knot but
not-rope
that you see hanging
from your neck on trees
the next morning,
you’ll have to take my warning
as it is.

I’m just not far away from the fire yet
to turn back and laugh
without risking a salty
statuette of my good intent.

I’ve earned that much.

And how.

I sip coffee in the morning now
with all the music that
was always there to
bring me into sleep,
it is the drug I will always
lean hardest on.

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One Size

I can’t stand shopping.
I used to love being a kid in the cart and
grabbing stuff from one aisle when nobody looked
and then dropping it somewhere else:

maybe I was a child anarchist,
maybe I was a shit,
maybe I was a fucking artist,
without proper tools or inspiration.
so I took to the shelves and remade them
in my own twisted version of store planning,
in my own storm of shop dropping,
two decades too early,
two little fistfuls of products, poised
to my own devious ends.

Years later when I worked in a grocery store
all that karma was reduced to a single bill
I owed what I owed and at the end of the night
I had to fulfill the duty of looking for products
that been left in the wrong spot
the entire fucking store, shelf by aisle by freezer by display
for lost items, that they called “orphans” in case the
average minimum wage employee needed reminders that this
was a dire and crucial element to the job.

I think about the orphans when i shop now
and still once in awhile create a little chaos
for the next kid whose just trying to finish their shift
and get to some party where they can talk about how
it makes no sense to call them orphans since
they have never really left the florescent home
and they would by this logic call shoplifters kidnappers.

I have to shop sometimes though.
It is water boarding for my soul.
I loathe every salesperson not because
they invite it but because I just detest everything about the phony process.
I even start to sound like Holden Caulfield.

I needed boots though.
It could not be helped.
The previous week I had done a rush job of foot wear.
I had bought a pair, believe it or not, an entire size larger than mine.
This is how much I hate shopping.

They were like clown shoes after a few hours.
So I wore two socks.
but then my feet got all sweaty
and I’m pretty sure some sort of
athletes foot started to flare as a result.
They were on sale too. So no returns.
Now i had to return to the scene of the hell-crime.
I had to do twice what I reluctantly do once a year or more.

So I tried on 18 pair.
No luck.
everything felt like it was hard and designed for robotic footed beings.
everything felt like a twisted Cronenberg three hour retelling of Goldilocks,
with redheaded temper replacing blonde earnestness. Every sales clerk was
more and more a grizzly.

I gave up on Pay-Less.
It should have never crossed my mind to enter since
it looks about the quality of Al Bundy’s shoe shop,
and that can never be good.

I ended up back at the place I started.
Endless bus rides, hours of muzak and increasing
sense of panic driving into my body,
back to the fucking shire I went, seeking the impossible.

I saw them out of the corner of my twitching eye.
They gleamed like fucking Excalibur.
but then they walked like geisha clogs.
5 more pair.
5 more runway walks.
you always fucking wish the salesperson
would just fuck off
and not watch you do your test walk
like what am I going to do?
run out of the store in tight boots?
has this happened?
is it an epidemic?
i start to think about how this must be the shittiest job in the world
watching for potential kidnappers
putting boxes of orphans on shelves like a
detective at the end of some show
and finally
a pair of Timberland’s spoke
my fucking language
and I almost threw the size 13’s from hell
back at the sales clerk and
decided against it
I almost put them on the shelf
but didn’t
I just walked home
proud for having avoided a total rage out
and put the 13’s in the box the Timberland’s
my sacred number 12’s
had come in, and I put the box in the back of my closet
next to the other things
I like to pull out of retirement
for a laugh
now and again you need
to laugh at your own foolish abandon
of logic
of reason of
all fucking hope

because boots are made for walking…
and orphans are made to be re-shelved,
and shopping is for masochists,
see you again next year.

Seeing Permanent Red

They say us red heads have
tempers like East Coast weather
unpredictable and vicious.

I would argue this point but
it would only send me into
another full blown raging whirl wind.

I turn into a Snickers-less Joe Pesci.
I become Oppenheimer.

Without a moment’s notice.
Even my Jekyll is more like
most people’s Hyde.

Today when I could not find my hat
I felt like I needed it
like some average Junky,
then the more I couldn’t find it,
the more I became Herbert Hunke.

Suddenly I was a barrel short
of 12 angry monkey’s.

I miss a bus and start mumbling
to my room:

“How in the history
of all the holiest fucks
of fucking fuckers
have I lost this goddamn hat
when I have yet to leave the
house today?”

The theories get elaborate, fast.
Some kind of starving, stray
micro-goat-like creature
which normally subsists off odd socks
has not found one lately and has
decided to get brazen.

I must still be wearing it I say,
and pat my red, slowly
sweat-gathering
heavy hair.
Nope.

I check the legs of jeans
startling my bed’s frame
like crusty farmer clothes on
rickety, birch fences.

My inner Shining
declares that
Genes got me here
to begin with.

I go to punch air
and I hit the corner of my door
gashing open my hand,
now I’m bleeding and
cursing and mumbling and
tossing clothes around
like a baglady at the last
Sally Ann sale of the Earth
positive that any second I will
start to shit out everything
I have ever lost
and that’s a lot, a lot, a lot of shit.

By the time I give up and
put my hoody on
I’ve missed another bus
I’ve screamed in italic’s of cuss
I’ve prayed like a desperate Catholic
to a Mexican pick up truck’s Jesus-rust.

Curse this temper of mine.
All it was ever good for
were broken Super Nintendo controllers
dry wall craters covered in NIN posters
and a good post-meltdown chuckle
like the one just now,
while writing this poem.

Maybe that’s enough.

I Spit Your Reason Out

You stated in some circumstances,
we were only meant to work
and slumber in the after-party.

I fought with you I renamed you
cascading demon titles.

I even learned your enemies signatures,
paraded them out for you,
easy like a dealer, then hungry like junkies.

Complicit I charge in all you do
is an angle of you, you, and you.

I won’t go any further
around the room,
just stew on it as you feel fit.

Permit me the moment though
to wave my finger in the air
and tell you just what the whether
has dealt- whether it was rape or capital
assassination of character, whether it
was art science and political
or just another junglist off on a rant
about their own caved-into-stronghold.

I will not re-right your arrows.
Gibran was right, their sentience
it narrows so ol’ natural that
you reminisce about the subtlest
inference of it, like oil of olay
commercial, jagged little glass
plucking the skin in imperfect melodies.

You know what kind of like I like,
the kind of hate you hate to hate.
We are simple side by side
wallet photos
fridge magnets
matching joggers.

We are the constellation anyone can name.
We are easy.
Not simple
Sexy, not sultry.
Unless we wanted to be.
Unless it got out
of hand and turned
out that way.

I spit your reason out,
you judge me perfectly.
We dance on the floor like
marbles
eating through a mason jar
onto hardwood, we hard hoods of
hipster pre-destinations and
another amalgam of personal,
preliminary muses.

You and I are like two magazines,
thrown arbitrarily onto
the same laundr-o-mat floor,
in a hold up that became a
flash mob and ended in
a kiss that had virus’
named after it later,
and love songs, too.

Skytalk

Mazzy Star in the Sky,

Some sort of cloud last night
that thought it was a painting

stretched close to the moon like a
cradle, and then a human leaning

over a note book, and then a stretched,
grey alien face, and I didn’t have much time left

for contemplating it but I
wondered if some life form

watched it also and then, saw it
turn human ugly, but who has time for science
fiction any more, why just the other day

a woman broke down on the bus
complaining of the smell in her head

and all around her, so that she
couldn’t take it any more but nobody notices

much in head-phone-screen-
oasis-face-matrixes.

If we all had time we could, I bet,
think our way out of this.

But look at that clock it has it in for
all of us, even the little dogs, too.

We could escape yes, the few of us but
I am not sure what I would do with you.

You are all a bunch of clouds, huddled
around a flicker-faded moon.

There is no time for any of it.

.

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?

This is Why I Do It

A flash of brilliance

is worth a thousand scorpions,

is the weight of
a gallon of your best friends laughter,

is the Beelzebub of Ghostbuster caught demons,

is the Houdini prestige,

is a marble in a mason jar,
tumbling from creak-heavy rocking chair,
onto creak-heavier hard-wood floor.

The sound of the shatter
is the alarm clock
the blade of evil light
the day job
the departing whore
the piss-heavy dog
waiting at the door,
to take you out,

back into normalcy.

Back to a quiet,
saturate hell.

And anyone tells you different
is a shit, a liar, an idiot,
or some kind of religious.

Best Read in Voice of “Claptrap” from Borderlands “on Wee-e-e-e-e-d” (half baked reference remix not included but sold seperately at an inflated and ridiculous, almost Avatar like, price)

Welcome to Meta-Mart!
Your one-stop shop for all your reference needs!
Ash in house wares will show you around!

How about some nice Krueger Sheers for the missis?
No? Something less ghastly perhaps,
have you tried the Beetle-juicer plus diet pro?

Welcome to Meta-High!
The première educational facility, for future reference!
Classes offered this semester include:
“Ridgemont to Breakfast Club: the study of hallways as leading motif”.

Welcome to Meta-Poem!

Where this poem stops, looks around,
examines the competition,
and self-immolates on page while blasting
Rage Against the Machine wearing only
Alice’s best laid Chains!

Welcome to the end of the Matrix.
Welcome to Thunder dome.
Welcome to Wendy’s.

Welcome to Go Fuck Yourself!

and

Thank You,
come again.

(in the voice of Apu but a robot.)

Welcome to my left foot,
in harm’s way
up your ass.

Welcome to the Lone Ranger
finally pissing Tonto off enough
that he just eviscerates his skull
with a blunt weapon, around the fire
now,
his shitty, soppy blood trickling into the flames,
being eaten and spit back into the world as smoke,
rising into this very poem,
in this very moment,
welcome to the City of Light.

Please, enjoy your stay.
(in the voice of the Vancouver Skytrain,
or the countdown to self destruct voice of Alien)

Welcome to the evolution of the side kick,
into the arch-nemesis.

Welcome to the Mass reading aloud of your enemies,
your every weakness,
your each subtle neurosis,
your constant need to reference movies,
your empty stomach filled with good, Irish drunk bravery,

and your last, sketchy attempt at infamy.

Welcome to finally using your time wisely.

Now get off my stage.

I have something to burn,
somewhere to be.

Another vague fucking reference to ensure
you don’t get
too far off
into that forest-

modern/post.

Poetry on Youtube, Poem on WordPress (one)

Crawling into the Betty Davis song called Anti-Love Song,

I immediately noticed three things,
namely that I have gone insane,
secondly, that I am bound to go deeper and lastly,
I already like it better here.

Here the women of funk and
political fire all rule in an
easy, recognizable response
to the ownership of previous
and now forgotten Hero Tales.

Everyday is a baseline that
creeps from the quiet death bed

McCandless
in Alaska, and trickles down,

Kerouac’s Big Sur,
finally erasing Jeff Buckley’s
lilac outline and finding the last little
fucker poet
and screwing him good
to the Good Fix, retired to a life of
sweet, sweet funk in recline.

Then I showed up,
dancing something like Marley
and bellowing like a drunker, more
Scottish William Wallace,
talking about Hailing A Ship
to New Funk.

That’s all I got before
the round rubber room men
came and got me
out of the bird cage I had been
occupying in some local
strip mall where
only the cheap parents still
creep around, hoping to
see each other but not be seen,
hoping to god not to have to have something
to talk about again
under those sickly tube lights in the
film noir produce section,
behind the tanning salon with
a razor blade, some surgeon
lurking after them.

You want layers Dr. Chinaski?
I’ll give you something to get lost on.

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.