Geological Humanity

Scrapyards of metal and men,
dangerous breaks and edges,
flakes of steel drifting, looking to lodge in an eye
and mountains of rust,
visible now, soon buried,
or fed back to the foundry.
More husks rot here now than ever,
more cuts-in-promise, more
shattering and shattered scraps,
more men buried beneath metal and more,
always more,
metal to bury them.

The Metamorphosis Of Me, Personally

there’s a feeling like a fine china
to be looked at – never touched
for fear of breaking, something
you show visitors and dust carefully,
and another, not quite a feeling,
a knife sharpened and honed until it can cut anything:
sweetmeats, the toughest heart, brain and
bone,
so sharp it is brittle,
so sharp it shatters on first use.

I was once held in wait,
patient, expectant,
until all else was gone and used;
and the china becomes another plate,
and the razor-edge is dull.

Bare Minimum

this world is run on the bare minimum –
meek analysts skittering about, avoiding the stare of
lounging bosses, dreading the call of
vacationing shareholders, ignoring their wives,
their wives ignoring their husbands in favor of
rimed margaritas, of poolboys, tennis,
important things.
this world is run on the bare minimum,
yes,
but cannot have this appearance,
must have everyone keeping busy,
make-do, make-work, no time to stop and reflect on
the limits of the bare minimum,
on how it is clothed and veiled,
on what it keeps us from.

flatlands

it is all so flat here,
so lone and level, so lovely,
so dead and dying, such small
and twisted grasses and
nibbling jumping creatures,
flying swooping birds with
bloody beaks and objectionable cries.
it is all so flat here and
news rarely sparks and
when it does it catches into the grass,
then half the state is up in news.
I don’t know why people live here,
perhaps because,
for some reason or another,
they are dead and dying,
small and twisted,
lovely,
screaming their rage out over the plains
and hoping to be understood.

Waiter Gig Just Outside Salem, Ohio

I will cut the point from my tongue;
wipe all looks from my face;
I will drain the sunless seas and
measureless depths from their canyons,
let them fill with concrete and pleasantries.
I will know no fear and know no pain,
I will be asked to do more than any,
more than all,
and given little. I will be G-d,
the humble,
all-knowing and derided,
I will be G-d,
the slave,
spat upon and forgotten,
I will be.
I will.

Doom &

Our shadows have outrun us and
move faster than the light can reach;
The earth, angry and sickened,
boils and sweats through this sickness;
heaves and hurls and spins a little louder
through the endless nights.
Our shadows have outreached our hands
and dug deeper than we ever dreamed,
have spread the mountains thin over the globe,
have used every part of the buffalo
until there are no parts left to use;
have exhumed all buried things and
smoothed the imperfections from the clay.
Our shadows have taken all and left,
left,
what, exactly, but a worthless sphere?
And cursed are the meek,
who inherit such a poor globe.

freelancer

I am a loser but only part-time;
other-time, there are those who know
I am dependable and true,
other-time, there are soft lips to greet my own
and kiss, slowly gliding the slope of my neck
and coasting past my
bellybutton.
I am a loser but only part-time;
only the time I sell for others.
In the time I keep for myself,
well,
hell,
has anyone ever won so much
in so few hours?

Dearth

vast and unforgiving,
hardpan and caked clay
beneath the rustle of sands,
the swirling of their dresses and shifts;
deep, deep, deep is the water and
here is nothing; day and night,
lifeless and predictable as
the rotation of a foreign planet.
Here are my deep and shallow places;
my sands and my dead seeds,
here I am, standing in the thirst,
here I am, digging for promises
and rumors.

Hope is worse than knowing;
tell a man there’s gold in a hill and
he’ll destroy the hill, the hill will destroy him,
and nothing of note will be found.
Tell a man there’s nothing here,
nothing,
and he will move to green prairie
and ignore those deep, deep,
deep waters.