Sunday, October 9, 2011

How hard can it be?

"So, where are my poems?"

I don't think I've heard that phrase since my godawful creative writing classes in college.  You know, those classes where everyone's a little genius and you're obligated to peer review their writing while they politely ignore everything you say because they're amazed you can manage walk upright and shit indoors...let alone have the audacity to imply that the garbage they scribbled down in a drunken haze at 4AM doesn't quite stack up to Dylan Thomas.  Ah, Dylan Thomas.  Now there was a mofo that could drink and write.

Anyway,Chris, my boss at Inkbot (I call him "my boss" to make it sound like I have a legit job as a writer, just play along) suggested I contribute a little extra to the site by starting a blog.  I don't know how great of an idea that is, without a story to keep my thoughts penned in, I tend to spiral into a bunch of random thoughts and run-on sentences.  That and I don't want to come right out the box ranting and raving like a crazy person.  Seeing as how the audience at Inkbot have only heard my voice through the characters of Revolvers, American Ambition, and "K," I may need to ease them in to my less err...fantastical writing.

 So I'm sitting on a few poems that I wrote back before I started doing prose full time, so I figured I'd share them with the Inkbot audience...or the five or so of you that sticks around to read text without the art to spice it up.

One of the lessons my favorite poet taught me was to never explain what your poems are about...figured that'd be a bitch when it comes to writing a blog entry so I'll just rant and rave about unrelated stuff before I post them.

PS- I know that I'm using a standardized template, in the interest of full disclosure, I confess I know jack-fuck-all about making things look nice...I have an artist for that.

The Contra Waltz

My mother lets out a sympathetic sigh
Because she thinks I’m homesick
“No” I tell her.
“I’m home, sick.” 
As in, I have a fever
In the apartment I consider my home.

Even though I’ll never afford to keep it
Because I don’t make enough money
because no one will give me a decent job
because of any number of excuses.
I mean reasons.

And I’m missing the work I can’t afford to miss
and I feel like gravity is working over time
and there’s something heavy
and angry behind my eyes
and I can’t get out of bed
and I wish I hadn’t picked up the phone.

I drop the phone and it talks
about how you never get my calls.
How we all talked about it
and we think you’re depressed

How your sister is worried.

If you’ve called the doctor yet.
No, the other doctor.

How you’d have more money
if you didn’t drink so much.

About why you haven’t called
the corporate recruiter back
for the hundredth time
if you left a message
if you’re sure.

About if you’re on the line.
Are you there?

I wonder
if my temperature gets
high enough,
will l explode inside out
like a popcorn kernel?
Much to the chagrin
of New York City’s
forensic pathologists
and one of its landlords.

I could be reborn
as a fat chick’s naval ring
for never going to church.

Her pitiable shoe heel will snap
she’ll land gut first on the sidewalk.
I’ll roll down a vent
and live on the subway tracks

until an earthquake splits the ground
and I fall somewhere deep
and hot.

I’d be melted down
into a schizo’s molar filling
that picks up satellite transmissions
and keep them a secret between he and I.
He’ll get tired of having to find
new jobs and
trying new medications.

A nine millimeter slug will burst
from under his chin,
dislodge me,
force me up through
his tinfoil hat,
his ceiling
to the heavens.

Where that satellite lives
in cold isolation
keeping people connected
as it practices a frozen waltz
in an infinite ballroom

Until it gets lonely
and collides with something
and breaks apart
and enjoys the warm friction of the atmosphere
and lands somewhere tropical
and quiet
and enjoys retirement by the sea.
And picks up waves of salsa music
and misses the rhythmic spin of orbit
and wishes it had legs to learn
the contra waltz.

And that’s why I never got your calls
and I’m doing just swell, all things considered.
And thanks for asking.

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