There's a small stream that runs quietly near my living space. The stream was never there before. It runs thick and lazily, languidly marching to wherever it may end. Ankle deep in most spots it's near impossible to see the bottom. The water can grow hair and it's corrosive contents eat into the earth with wild abandon. Gnawing like some monster, teeth gnashing, drooling poison. The earth seems to cry out in despair. Flailing its arms to the sky, pulling its hair out, tearing at its eyes. This, of course, is a distortion for the earth gave up the fight many years ago.

Along the embankment of this terrible beast, scattered about like bones on some ancient battleground, are the lost. The broken. The remnants of man. Great barrels oozing from cracks the mire and muck of this era. The surrounding mural of land is barren and jagged. Rocks jut from rocky soil like fingers of some escaping titan. Tufts of long grass grow sporadically here and there. It's nature's abortive attempt to reclaim her former glory.

We are the forgotten. The resistance.

The stream bends a little and at this bend a woman is kneeling at the edge. She's crying uncontrollably and staring dolefully into the water. She's searching for something. Her own reflection? A memory? She is dressed in stained rags and her feet are bare. The tears cut the grime on her face as she continues to stare into the black. There is no one around. There is no one close enough to hear her stifled screams as she struggles to hang on after taking a drink from the stream. Her eyes fill with what at first appears to be absolute terror. Had there been anyone around they would of recognized their folly for the appearance of sheer terror was actually one of contentment. All had gone black. She had found her escape. She had found her way out. Kicking like a struggling gazelle in the maw of a lion she grabs her throat as if trying to tear it out. Had there been anyone around they would of seen her eyes bleed. They would of seen her mouth moving in dread but completely unable to utter a word.

The kicking would cease. The birds would stop singing. The stream would go motionless. The woman in rags will lay there and rot in the sun. Nature will claim her and for that I hate nature. Had there been anyone around they would of seen a grown man kneel beside her form and weep. And they would of seen me as I slowly rose and looked east to a heartsick hill which upon the other side lay my shack.

There's a small stream that runs quietly.


ever the way of things

*More a note than a poem. I wanted to jot something down of a night I had with my brother after way too many White Russians*

got the fuck me eyes
then left with another girl
then ditched her
she was a social worker
from toledo. worked on the north
side of chicago.
so hot. too skinny. against
concealed carry.
that's when i started talking to
her friend.
her friend went to columbia
in NY.
did portraits of faulkner etc.
then didn't know who kerouac
said goodbye.
all i could think about
was the waitress that shot me
miss inconspicuous
miss mouse
miss don't say a word


always looking for the poetic line

but it's like
i'm tired of being the guy
that helps with shit
that awakens shit.
for other men to
reap the bounty on
i want to be
the bounty
just once


rumi, wine, cigarettes

she'd read rumi in the dark
stark naked with a bottle of wine
and rolled cigarettes rolled badly
i'll enter the room with my pants
down to my ankles
she doesn't even look up. her nose
is buried in rumi.
"oh jesus," i tell her. "sifus
don't know how to love. they don't know
how to fuck."
i'll walk over and sit down in my
chair at the computer. turn on some
redtube to catch the mood.
she ignores me and begins to read
aloud over the moans and groans.
pants still down at my ankles
i spark a cigarette and stand
up on the chair and scream
"gracious queen! thief of mine
thoughts! every electrical synapse
carries your name! let me gaze up
on thee!"
that doesn't work either. her nose
is still buried in rumi. her eyes
dart back and forth back and forth
across the pages. i climb off the
chair and walk the 3 or 4 ft to the
bed where she sits naked reading
rumi in the dark drinking cheap
wine. i put my cigarette out on
the page she had been reading.
"you ass!" she yells
finally, i get her attention
turn on my heels and walk to
the bathroom. then it hits me:
that had been my last cigarette


oil fields, battlefields, battlefields, grave

i feel safe here
alone. outside the
explosions light the sky.
there are no longer screams.
just a hollow silence that
goes for the throat.
every now and then a
helicoptor thumps by
overhead. rising like a
phoenix again and again
we fight back. search lights
reach down and pass over
my shack like arms of some
zeus. pay me no mind.
ignorant of the revolution
that haunts and swells
these oily walls. if they
knew, they would tear
it all down in an instant.
take the last of my paper.
burn it all to the ground
and i would die unpublished
and unknown. which is the only
way to die.

we're already ghosts

You’re always told this was once a nice place to live. A little gem along the Illinois River. Muddy and direct. Cut like a winding scar through the ancient earth of a Midwest dream. A nice place to live with its sad buildings of brick and mortar. Sometimes, if you look hard enough, you can still see old painted signs on the sides of these sorrowful giants. Temporarily taking you back to what you’re told was a simpler time. That’s always been a lie. Nowadays it’s all sprawl and the town has lost its luster. This gem has the bruised and tired face of a retired pugilist. Its eyes are devoid of life. Its skin leathery and taut. You can see it on the faces of the people. They’re worn out. Giving up. Even the trees seem to be bent in retreat. There’s no escape. This is the last thing any of us will see before we die. We’re already ghosts.

This isn’t the story of a dying town. That story gets old quickly. Every miserable metropolis or failing shithole across America has the same tired story. This is, instead, the story of a man. A husk of a man in a failing shithole. A man with bleeding fingers and torn nails from fighting the inexorable demise as he tries futilely to keep his grasp on whatever is left of the dream. He’ll never win but it’s the fight that keeps him getting up in the morning. The fleeting chance that something could happen. He had thought any willingness to hold on would have died with the sun. That the bottom would of dropped out from beneath him the moment she left. But, that’s yet another boring story. It is ever thus.


the sometimes cloudy mouth

The sad
Sometimes cloudy mouth
Agape will always kiss you

Underneath this
Canopy of sometimes lust
Sometimes caution, the inevitable
Creature of these base-


The sad
Sometimes cloudy mouth
Agape will always kiss


Eyes shut legs smooth
Busy breath that
Licks and licks

At the back of
You r neck


this landscape is a bitch lover

The landscape outside is a bitch lover. Here, alone, I sit at a rustic computer with a screen moments from giving out completely. Peering out a window stained yellow from age and years of cigarette smoke. The walls smell of grease, oil and death. This is my refuge. My sanctuary. The front screen door refuses to stay shut. Instead it bangs violently against the wall trying without surcease to jump its hinges. Looking around, taking a deep tug off my last cigarette, I realize what a fire hazard my place has become. Paper is a rare commodity these days but I trade a man in town for it for what I tell him is clean water. Crumpled pieces lay strewn across the floor. Abandoned creativity. Any and all hope has been forced from our being. The collective strive to achieve, to create, to procreate, to live, has been raped from our bodies.

It’s raining again. It’s almost as if the weather knows the bombs were dropped. The final push for complete and utter control punctuated and announced with the final blast from on high. God has left the building. There is only us and them. My keystrokes accompany the muffled staccato of an urban gunfight miles distant. It’s beginning to grow closer. I pray they choose to look over my sad little shack. This is what I’ve become. A lone tiger without the will to fight. The resistance is for the hale, the young, the sexy. Let them die for whatever it is they choose to die for. My weapon of choice is the word and the words my ammunition. This is what I’ve become.

Madly in love or lovingly mad. I’ve forgotten the difference. A man has only his innermost thoughts these days. Introspection and disgust with what that delving reveals. The world around me has gone crazy. Women and children, the elderly and infirm. They die for a cause. The young formulate plans of counterattack to regain what sanity is left of this country once the battle is won. Or lost. Everything around my refuge, my sanctuary, burns out of control and all I can think of is lovers lost. Hand in hand in apoclyptica. What I wouldn’t do for a women’s touch right now. I have everything and nothing.


The fight has grown closer. They tell us resistance is futile. They only wish to protect us from ourselves. Outside the raid horn screams, echoing off the rocky walls here on the outskirts of town. Curfew for all except those that choose to die. Startled by a loud bang behind me I turn to find the door has finally jumped its hinges.


so he hoist his sail
and in her he plunged


there is a giant
wad of gum sitting at the base
of the lamp on my bed
side table.
6,7,9 pieces allclumpedtogether
she had the habit of
discarding her gum just before
we made (love)
i told her to hit the road
weeks back but think maybe i jumped
the gun.
i should see her one last time
so she can come
scrape it off


on coming to

she used to love running errands and drinking
alone in her apartment.
it made her feel grown up.
"why do you want to grow up so damn fast?" i asked.
this is when i started thinking dangerous thoughts
her and i.
maybe thats what made us
she could never give an answer
shed just go run more errands
and drink alone

robot skin

everything i've learned about life
has come from the
female form

its contours smooth
the edges honed

eyes bleeding light. mouth
sucking you dry

robot skin and robot teeth
jealous jade heart and
lips like snakes.
hair breezy brown like
many tentacles
that grasp and grasp.

concrete hands that
murder men in their

and the land of
milk and honey.
a watering hole
in an empty desert
that robot men again
and again
strive to
to reach
hands and knees
spitting sand choking on
a watery hole
that's always

there on the horizon
that disappears
into desert night
the minute we