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Recollections

Old House Bop

 

I lived here once

Room smelt of piss

for seven months

but I knew this

was the best we’d do

I lived here with you

I lived here with you

 

The walls were red

in the living room

and our bed

lay like a tomb

for just us two

I lived here with you

I lived here with you

 

I lay on the ground

the last two nights

and made tiny grunts

with all my might

and if I’m found

well, if I’m found

I died without a fight

 

You muttered fuck what did I do

until the body I gave you

was just a shadow on the rug

that I’d abandoned with a shrug

 

I used to stay in this house for you

till the paint grew thin and peeled

Now I’m broken

back together

Now my body is a shield

 

 

Zeitgeist

 

hamburger hamburger pork tenderloin

oversized fork napkin beer

fuck I

really love it here

so I come in in yesterday’s clothes

every day and I already smell like scotch

Spicy

my friend used to say

you’re a spicy smelling girl

We come here on Saturdays and

Mondays Saturdays Mondays Saturdays Mondays

and get our best bartender to play

the Pixies and bring us burgers

medium rare

and French fries with truffle oil

I have eaten other hamburgers and drunk

many beers out of glass contoured cups

but this is the place I come with you

where they laughed when I fell

from my stool onto yours

and waved when we started sitting

at a dim corner table instead of the bar

 

 

One Minute Poems

 

It never became clear

what I had done wrong

but I knew it was something

the way that I hated

the smell of your grandparents’ house

or let you be evil

 

It was only expected

that we’d be upside down

like Lady Bathory’s maids

in the washroom

a confident flow of

blood running from our fingers

 

You sped to my house

before sunrise, babbling

scat and with the road and the

fiction the road projected

running together on your face

 

In Galway the wind was high

and lifted her up

the little red flowers on

her coat speeding toward

the cliffs at dusk

 

At the end of the path

there’s a red pine stand

just before the Old Iron Bridge

that fell

one day I broke my

bike chain there,

so we lay in the needles

 

Licked your asshole

so you stuck your finger

in mine

and I got you drunk later

and convinced you

to punch me in the jaw

 

I wrote her to tell her

to stop, afraid she misunderstood

In my mind I wrote

a letter, made a call

but in reality,

I’m afraid to stand for you

 

Am I happy

fuck

I’m fucking exuberant what’s not to be

happy about all of us dead lying

on a giant flashing motherboard

or whatever fucking 2050 looks like

 

I push my teeth into

your shoulder your flesh

is hard gripping your bones

I climbed on top of the dresser

and raised my arms you said

you’d never known a girl so tall

 

Red shift

is a phenomenon occurring

when astronomers wear

3-D glasses outside the movie theater

 

Wanted you to see

something special about me

guess I forgot that

everybody has birthmarks

 

 

Weekend Poem, or How I Get to the Early Shift on Sunday

 

You’re falling out of bed, dear,

give me your shoulders.

Give me your arms, dear.

Give me your hands

and I will haul you back

up. I couldn’t bear

to see you lying on the carpet

when I woke.

 

You’re falling out of bed, dear.

Give me your shins.

Give me your knees and your

ankles and your heels.

Finding you on the floor like this

is one thing, but I couldn’t

bear to think it was me who let you,

watched you roll down,

tumble away.

 

I wake up early Sunday morning.

I peel your fingers from my

stomach and knead them, sticky,

and rub my thighs, sticky.

I stumble through the house and

take a piss, same thing

every Sunday. But today, when I

forgot my coat, I came back

and found you by the foot of the bed,

eyes shut, crawling.

You’re falling

out of bed dear.

Give me your chin.

Give me your nostrils, dear.

Give me your teeth.

 

 

Beetlejuice

for m. on her birthday

 

You and I sat on the

little beach that is piled up

where the Cannon River

bends around the great oak

tree. Jake was the noise.

He had found four clamshells,

The mollusk bodies clawed

out and eaten long ago,

and woven them into his fingers,

where he smushed them together,

clumsy castanets covered

in the sewage of our town

and trout eggs.

The whiskey was flavored with the tang

of aluminum and day-old

Coca Cola, but did its job,

so he crashed through thigh-deep

water, shouting ‘The Banana Boat’,

and we rolled our thighs over

and over in the sand.

The sound of the drunk, singing

Harry Belafonte was rough

and rapid as the path of

the molecules of water and

dirt and shit running by and I

rocked over onto my knees

to crawl into it.

When the water touched

my lips, I tasted it, metallic

like the liquor, but a deep black

in it that pulled me down faster.

But still, I was deliberate.

My feet skimmed along

the riverbed when I reached

the center, and you and Jake

could scarcely see

how I turned over, lay down

on my back. You stood on the

edge still. I was

another water-logged tree,

filled with hermit crabs and weeds,

and you sang songs

from the rest of your favorite movies.

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