A tour guide through your robbery
He also is
Cigarette saying, “look what I did about your silence.”
Ransom water and box spring gold
—This decade is only for accent grooming, I guess
Ransom water and box spring gold
—The corner store must die
War games, I guess
All these tongues rummage junk
Begins and ends
In restaurant bathrooms
That some people use
And other people clean
“you telling me there’s a rag in the sky?”
—waiting for you. yes—
we’ve written a scene
we’ve set a stage
we should have fit in. warehouse jobs are for communists. But now more corridor and hallway have walked into our lives. Now the whistling is less playful. The barbed wire is overcrowded too.
If it has a prison, it is a prison. Not a city.
When a courtyard talks on behalf of military issue,
all walks take place outside of the body.
Dear life to your left.
Medieval painting to your right.
None of this makes an impression.
Crop people living in thin air.
You got five minutes
to learn how to see
through this breeze.
When a mask goes sideways,
barbed wire becomes the floor.
Barbed wire becomes the roof.
Forty feet into the sky
becomes out of bounds.
When a mask breaks in half,
mind which way the eyes go.
They’ve killed the world for the sake of giving everyone the same backstory
We’re watching Gary, Indiana fight itself into the sky
Old pennies for wind. For that wind you feel before the hood goes up and over your headache. Pennies that stick to each other (mocking all aspirations). Stuck together pennies was the first newspaper I ever read. Along with the storefront dwelling army that always lets us down.
Where the holy spirit favors the backroom. Souls in a situation that offer one hundred ways to remain a loser. Souls watching the clock hoping that eyes don’t lie to sad people.
the narrator asked the graveyard
—ten minutes flat—
said the graveyard
—the funeral only took ten minutes—
“never tell anyone that again,”
the narrator severely replied
“You just going to pin the 90s on me?”
—all thirty years of them—
“Then why should I know the difference between sleep and satire?”
the pyramid of corner stores fell on our heads
—we died right away
that building wants to climb up and jump off another building
—these are downtown decisions
somewhere on this planet, it is august 7th
and we’re running down the rust thinking, “one more needs to come with me”
on earth, so
that we could
be sent back
A conductor of minds
In a city-wide symphony
Waving souls to sing
He also is
Where Windows Should Be
“How did I miss that brother’s name?”
said the sorriest man in the crowd
with candle light on his face.
came through earlier
and said he was the devil.
We stopped him before
he could crack his first joke.
“I can’t wait to fall out the sky
on these suckers again,”
he mumbled walking away
“I guess greetings end
when the knife gets dull,”
he also mumbled
every once in a while
blood jumps back into the body
and the cosmos go home
(easy going art)
a woman stops to steady herself,
but her shoulder keeps walking
a man stops to tie his shoes,
but his tongue keeps walking
an infamous child
meets an infamous street
and pulls off an infamous miracle
looking just like you
we put his head on a paint brush
and got back to work
arguing with each other:
“what do you mean puddles don’t smile?”
“and why can’t jail bars un-bloom?”
“we call them crumbs! You call them crumbs!”
arm in arm
back alleys walk
after becoming people
rights, baby! Even we get rights too!
A man plays the trumpet next door
Then never no more
I whispered once
It didn’t go well
Wine in my cup
They called it a yell
Don’t make a scene
All friendships have dead people in them
and putting them under windshields!”
“it’s only weird
when no one else plays along!”
Candle light on faces
The riot keeps walking
Channels to fall asleep to
While shoe box to shoe box travels my childhood
Professionals roll garbage cans around a conference room
Half the size of a holding tank
Half the hope of a holding tank
Full of third world retail flattery
“nothing wrong with the blind leading the blind,”
we think they just said
succeeding for the most part
dying for the most part
married for the most part to its death
when a hostage has a hostage
that is u.s. education
stores detach their heads
and expect you to do the same when you enter
God says, “do not trust me in this room”
Two fascists walk into a bar
One says, “let’s make a baby.”
The other says, “let’s make three… and let the first one eat the other two.”
the book of pool room enemies
“I’m the best kind of square. Poor and in love with the 1960s. The first picture I ever
saw in my life faded from my storytelling a long time ago.”
Not even ten years old
And most of you are on my shoulders
The store’s detached head smiled
casually be poor
how to get out of this room
and we’ll leave you enough blood
to turn off the lights
on your way out
casually be poor…
they are all cops when you are poor
may we all refuse to die at the same time
“I believe I wasn’t born yet, when a young woman put her first gun under a car seat,”
The painter explained
in front of his work
with a .38 in his back pocket
Combination of conversations you may call it:
The day all the saints clocked in late
mixed with the first serious talk
seven-year-old best friends have about war.
“the world is just a constellation of walls.
Twitch a little less than everyone else.
That’s the key.”
I miss her
Or is the static of a westbound interstate bus ride beautiful when all but three
people are asleep
I’m writing poems for the rest of my life again
Taught by the greats:
“friends make friends. You just be a good liar.”
“you would not believe the grains of blue I found after I was laid to ground.”
“fit in, youngster/fit in, trigger man.”
“watch your nickname mean something to more than five people.”
born without a third dimension
Is wandering under county jail slippers
and people who smoke by themselves in old city parks
Electric chairs are not complicated:
Have a drink. Go to work.
“They lynched his car too. Strung it up right next to him… A smart man
makes up his own set of holidays… A smart man occasionally switches the dates
around of his holidays too. Because enemies have a sense of humor.”
Mind. I had a mind once. Served my immediate family well. But that’s all over now.
A most impressive reimagining of a painter
Where the tenth floor
Might as well be a cloud of dust
Or a version of myself that
I can point your attention to
While I count my money and curse mankind
The best way to pay me
Is in my left hand
While my right is juggling
A steering wheel
And a negotiation with the ruling class
Maybe you are not a sleepy employee in a project lobby
Maybe you are blood on a fiber
Maybe you are my friend
I have ruled the world.
Let me sleep this off.
Is that your tongue in the sky?
That’s the only weather I need.
—the only way physics advances
this getaway is live
is not yet invented
With the rest of the sound
—the young woman and me about to be born
“And there. There is you. Dancing with someone’s daughter in front of the precinct”