Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Suburban Swampcity Blues

This is a fragment from a short story I'm currently working on. Constructive criticism is welcomed, as always.

When Santiago removed the knit skullcap from his head, he felt a blanket of goose bumps rapidly form all along the nape of his neck, as if Aphrodite herself had been the one making love to him all night. The sensations his mind had identified were nothing but vertiginous pleasure spasms; he could not make sense of any of it. Rationality was a tiny vessel of mute seamen, and it was long gone by now. He tried to compose more thoughts, but this only made him dizzier.
He laid down on his bed and began tossing a hackie-sack up toward the ceiling and with his thumb and index finger, catching it each time with ease, as if it were the stem of a feather floating back to him. His hands appeared to be rough and aged, unlike the rest of his body: an immaculate machine throbbing with a youthful urgency. Then again, this was commonplace at the studio. It was filled with the buzzing of the young, and each palm was scarred and calloused. The people he shared his space with during the day were there for the same exact reasons. They, too, were thirsty for malleability, for creation. And they loved to sculpt, just as he did.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Five Dense Minutes

2:58 am: My feet are almost as calloused as your hands always were. These hands are virginal apparati with a texture similar to that of honey or warmed dough. Virtually unscathed. Clearly, they do not make nearly enough.

3:02 am: My head is buried in my pillow now and I'm thinking this can't be healthy- being reminded of your life by the faintest sound of music that you will never have the opportunity to hear. I'm wondering if I'm sick for never wanting to forget; for fearing Alzheimer's at age seventy more than death at age thirty; for wishing for any physiological malfunction over amnesia. I'd like to always be able to recall the inflection of your voice when you would ask what it was I had learned in school that day. At twelve, it posed as a hideous question. But at twenty, not so much.

"What did you learn in school today?" Now, that's a poem.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Well I guess it's more of a Science anyway

"I want you to gallop past my periphery.
Prance across my panoramic scope,
so I can practice the art of
refusal, as I clench my teeth
to turn you away
over and over again," he insisted.

"I'm hoping it will get easier
after the six-hundredth trial..."

Friday, November 20, 2009

"You should be kissed. And often. And by someone who knows how."

you could say what she had experienced
was a bout of magic;
a strange ephemeral burst of wicked
confidence that could seemingly give one the ability
to blow dozens of shiny, prismatic bubbles without a wand,
to make billows of smoke dance when the incense
burns too quickly,

but there wasn't anything magical about it.
it was the stroke of a guru,
a transient cluster of divinity's guise:

a lie,

Saturday, October 24, 2009

He was a Sailor

Look onward, psychonauts!
Scrape the paint off the gilded cage,
as you murmur your melodramas through
the straws in your mouths
and then softly ask,
"Where is my ego today?"


Wednesday, October 7, 2009


maybe tattooing
old, wrinkled skin
feels like writing
on wet paper-
don't want to
rip you, you:
so fortunate
to have survived
the rain,
the time.

but watch as a grandmother
sits in a parlor
age seventy-two,
abiding in agreement
with her twenty-something
"nothing you'll want to hide
when you're my age."

see her flinch
from the needle as it
traces lines on her
leathery, brown flesh.
"i passed four children -
there isn't a pain i can't bear,"
she keeps repeating,
not intending to remind
anyone but herself

bandaged, they walk out,
and under each bulk of
thick, white gauze
lie tiny etchings of
Sahara totems:
an itchy hieroglyph

Friday, October 2, 2009

Ducts of Whiskey

you cry tears of Dewar's,
and lick your lips when you speak of the past,

how do you do it?
gesticulate with all four limbs
like that.

you speak of things
you've seen that
i cannot even dream,

infancy is strange,
when it lasts for
twenty years.

maybe these memories
were meant to be
into the Great Lake of

right now,
a poem will sound good
to me only if it was written
in anything but
first person perspective

but today, i am
fine with being

Monday, May 18, 2009

Variation on a Theme/Deviation

I've been ostracized
by younger men than you,
but none who carried
the heavy sandbags of hostility
so far
without shattering the glass
of their own gait.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


la luna sabe que
la practica es necesaria.

Friday, May 1, 2009

A Nutty Ode

Your shell was shed
so I could find you,

I'm an addict on a binge
for your love, as I scrape the jar
of your body with a spoon,
your beautiful remains

I slide you between fluffed
welcoming your comfort
when my lover ignores
my needs.

As your aroma plays the banjo
with my senses,
your rich contents ride
the contour of my tongue,
begging for a fuller,
less irregular commitment.

Knees buckling at the sight
of Jiff, I recall that fateful day
in aisle eight,
where a five year old
fell in love.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

But I don't kiss on the Sabbath

"Synchronicity," she said
as she poised the single,
lit candle between her pursed
passed it on to yours,
No hands."

Friday, March 20, 2009

The Jackal of Carnality

As you tiptoe
through the corridor of her senses,
you listen closely
for the revolt of her Id,

riotous sensations
to shove themselves
through each of your pores-

any moment now.

Praying to the god you don't believe in,
that just this once,
the jackal of carnality
will roll over on its back,
to expose
its soft underbelly

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Catapulting Nostalgia

Machine-washable love,
continually laced with sensory spices,
brewing into nostalgic catapults of
when you stood on Time's shoulders,
and made deals about the infinity of your
About how far it could go,
and how long it could carry us,
until we eventually fall,
and claw away at the walls
of our own will.

meditation on the lip of a volcano

starving for calm,
you fold as crisp laundry
atop the
plane of silence
you religiously scour,

kneeskin wound
tightly around
the rock
of your bones,

you sit vigilant
with closed eyes,
as the darkness
vacuums away all

nostrils quaking
with rhythmic
these moments
keep some small
part of you safe

Monday, March 9, 2009

Tottenham Street

Here's a story that I wrote when I was pretty young. I don't like it much, to be honest, but I like to read it every now and then to take notice of how much I've improved.

It's a Tuesday morning and Kila Steffenson of Middlesex, England is sweeping the livingroom floor. Kila wakes up to an empty house every morning. Her younger brother, Jon, sleeps on the large, wooden deck built betwixt the branches of the back yard Oak tree. Kila likes to think he’ll soon grow bored of his own aloofness, as most prepubescent boys eventually do.

"Come in an' get your breakfast, Jon! And while you're at it, come look at what I found on the coffee table..."
Mumbling in half-awake babble, Jon pulls his t-shirt over his head.
“Bloody hell! Quit shouting, will you? I was in the middle of a dream." Jon rolls out of his make shift bed and proceeds to fall into the swimming pool below. He swiftly swims over to the edge of the pool and pulls himself onto the gravel. As Jon drags his dripping body into the house, he notes a stench so putrid, he instinctively runs back out.
"Where are you going?! Ignore the smell for just a second, and come into the living room. Come on!" Kila insists.
Jon reluctantly shuffles back into the house with his fingers clamping his nostrils together. "What is it, Kila?", he inquires nasally.
Jon shuffles over to Kila, as his dirt covered jeans are dripping pool water all over the flooring. "Oh. What---"
Kila covers his mouth, "Shhh. Don't say anything. We shouldn't tell Dad, should we?"
"Well I---," Jon musters two words before Kila interrupts him. "No.. no, we definitely shouldn't. You're right."

She runs upstairs to her bedroom and quickly finds a hiding spot for what she just found. Jon follows, "Where are you putting it? No... Kila don't put it in your drawer, you know Pop goes in there ever since he found your birth control pills.
"You're right, the nosey bugger'll know to snoop in there. I know exactly where to hide it." Kila reaches under her bed and pulls out a large wooden chest.
She opens it. It is full of nostalgic trinkets from her childhood. She reaches underneath all of them and places it at the very bottom.
"I guess that'll 'ave to do..." Jon says, as he lights up a cigarette. He enticingly waves the pack of Benson & Hedges in Kila's face, and she plucks one out of the pack, places it in her mouth and sparks it.
"I'm going to school, now. I'll see you later," Jon walks out of her room.
"Don't forget your breakfast!" Kila remembers.

"Kila! Open the door! It's your mum. I have groceries."

Kila reluctantly trots down the stairs and opens the front door to her mother. Her mother, Winnie, has three paper bags in her arms. Kila takes two of them and walks to the kitchen.
"Go on, empty it onto the table..." her mother insists. Kila unloads the bags only to find a large, heaping pile of unnecessary products. She raises her gaze to meet her mother’s, whose face is full of oblivious delight.
"Mum, what did you get fish tank cleaner for? We don't have a fish tank. 'Ave you gone mad?"
"Darling, you are the one who's gone mad... Jonny's got a tank in his room."
"You mean his nursery? The fish tank that he broke two years ago with his baseball?" Kila reminds her.
Kila's mother quickly glances at the box of fish tank cleaner and then back at Kila. She walks upstairs to Jon's nursery only to find that her daughter was right, there was no longer any fish tank. Her surroundings consisted of plants. Large, luscious green plants. Everywhere.
Kila sifts through more of the groceries and finds a large package of dog food, a wig, and twenty-six packs of multi-coloured shoe laces. All of which Kila deems as absolutely useless
Upstairs, Kila's mom is sprawled out on the floor in Jon's nursery. A film of dew has developed on her face from the humidity of the room. Her cheeks are ruby red and she appears to be sleeping. When Kila finds her mother, she immediately calls her father's office.
"Steffenson Psychiatry." his secretary, Doris, answers.
"Can I speak to my father? It's Kila"
"Oh, hi. He might be with a patient right now, let me go check,"
"Hi, um....Kila?" Jasper Steffenson seemed more uncertain than usual.
"Yeah, Pop. It’s me. Didn't Doris tell you I was on the phone?"
"Yes, uh, I was seeing someone. She said you sounded a bit frantic... what's going on, sweet pea?"
"Well," Kila inhales deeply to begin her long rant about her mother’s insanity, "Mum got home an hour ago with dog food. Dog food! We don't own a dog. She brought home wigs! We aren't balding. We certainly don't need two dozen packs of shoelaces. She has lost all of her marbles, every single last one of them. I swear it! What are we going to do? Why have a mother who can’t even mother herself!"
"Kila, calm down. Your mother is going through intense withdrawal right now. Empathize a little, won't you? She's been clean for five months now. There's a bit of memory loss. We've all got to bear with her."
At that moment, she feels her stomach tighten with conflicting emotions, and she drops the phone on the countertop.

The Poplar trees are whistling outside. Peering out the window, Kila notices a storm rolling in from the distant sky.
She then sees her next door neighbor pulling his car into his driveway.
Kila Steffenson is no longer crying in her kitchen. She is now crying while sipping tea on her neighbor's back patio.
Everything she has kept inside is going to flood out right about. . .
"Now, let me get this straight. This morning, you found a crack pipe laying on your coffeetable. You think it belongs to your mother, who happens to be a recovering crack addict?"
Her neighbor is Isaac Mulligan. A twenty-two-year-old Irishman who she has harbored an interest in since the day he moved into the house next door.
"Yes, and she---" Kila can barely make out a coherent sentence in between her wild spurts of hysteria. Isaac takes the tea from her hand and he sits beside her, wrapping his arms around her shoulders as he gently scratches her back.
Kila, in a state of desperate despair, looks up at his freckled face and moves in to kiss his cheek.
Isaac's eyes grow wide and he quickly picks himself up. He walks inside and comes back out with a box of tissues for Kila.
‘Thank you,” Kila says, with desperate sincerity.

Next door, Mr. Steffenson is trying to wake up his wife. Winnie Steffenson has been asleep on the nursery floor for three hours now. Her skin is damp and prune-like. Their son, Jon, is rummaging through the refrigerator ignoring the scenario completely. Mr. Steffenson walks downstairs and comes into the kitchen to join Kila and Jon.
"Your mother's awake. You all can go on about your day now," he assured.
Kila’s drained eyes shift over to her father's face and then to her brother’s sandwich.
"You can stop worrying now, Kila. Jon? It's alright. Everything is alright."
Jon picks up his sandwich and takes a large bite, blinking at his father’s assuring face.
Kila and Jon then walk upstairs and head into Kila's bedroom.
"Mum! What are you doing?!"
Mrs. Steffenson broke open Kila's chest full of stuffed animals and gotten ahold of her crack pipe.
She is sitting on the floor of her daughter's room, surrounded by stuffed animals, taking hits from the pipe.
"Shit... Jon, go get Pop! Now. What're ya waiting for? GO," Kila demands.
Jon bolts downstairs to retrieve his father. As he makes his way into the kitchen, he smells an odor similar to that of burning plastic and cotton candy. He hears his father talking.
He walks in, "Mum got ahold of her pipe." His father turns around, and Jon notices he's holding a pipe in his left hand.
"What-- Where'd you find that? Is that another one of Mum's?!"
Mr. Steffenson coughs as a large cloud of smoke is released from his mouth.
"No, Jon. This is prescribed for me. Hedwig advised me to use it for medicinal purposes, it alleviates the constant chatter."
"Constant chatter? There isn't any such thing as medicinal crack. For Chrissakes, Hedwig?”
Defensively, his father places the pipe down, "Listen, everyone is always talking in my office, I tell them to be quiet, that it’s my office, and that I’m entitled to peaceful working space, but they insist on blabbering away.”
"What about?" Jon inquires.
"Muffins. They talk about muffins. And me."
"But you don't share an office with anyone. I don't get--"
"Yes, that's the funny part. That's why Hedwig tells me to use this!" He holds up the pipe, and takes another hit.
"Hedwig? Pop... Hedwig was our Labrador, and he's been dead for three years now." Jon harshly breaks it to him. Mr. Steffenson then looks at his son, and feels like any man would feel after he's just realized he’s been quarreling with nonexistent nobodies. After he’s just concluded that he’s in fact a schizophrenic psychiatrist.

Jon runs to get Kila, and explains what ‘s just transpired.
She responds to the news by grabbing Jon by the arm and she starts to walk next door, to Isaac’s.
They don't bother to knock on the front door, Kila gazes through the window and sees Isaac sitting on his couch reading a newspaper.
She barges in. Isaac jumps up in a panic.
"I'm sorry to bother you... I just-- This is bollocks." Kila stammers.
Isaac runs over to Kila and hugs her. "What happened?"
Jon, feeling a bit confused about his sister's relationship with their neighbor, sits down on the sofa in defeat.
Kila stands wrapped in Isaac’s long arms, silently trying to shake off the day’s occurences.
"Call Aunt Jenya. She'll let us stay with her. I'm not living under the same roof as those two for another second." Jon says in disdain.

Hours pass, and Kila is asleep in Isaac's arms on his living-room carpet. Jon is snoring loudly on the couch.

The next morning, Mr. and Mrs. Steffenson enjoy bangers and mash with Hedwig.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Mint Biome

peppermint on tongue,
I suck the sugar from the air
through the cracks
between my teeth.

blizzard in my throat,
frost bitten
apple of

external Rain forest,
internal Tundra.

Today's Lunch Menu

Vegetable sushi
Served with your choice of Indecision soup, or Pad Thai Ambience

House beverage:
Distraction Sake,
on the rocks.

Psyche Rack

Lamb on a rack,
  melting, smelt of
    plastic in the sun,
      expanding North,
propelling South.
  the West reels in my limbs,
     the East--a wreckage of
        my skull.
Me, the lamb, living
  by means of escape,
     screeching at a wall,
        expecting a listener.

Zapped. [condensed]

dancing with my lobotomist,
and running through lightning storms
in aluminum foil.

i would feel
as our hands
first touch

love ulcer.

my belly---a throbbing orgy of dragonflies, mid-multiplicity.