Sunday, January 31, 2010

Cracks ( poem and reading )

This is about pre-relationship anxiety. Sometimes love is a war we fight against our past.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Missing You

I write poetry so I can remember later how I felt at a certain time.

Friday, January 29, 2010

I Wanna Dance Like Gene Kelley (poem with reading)

This poem was published in the print copy of Remark Poetry a couple years back, and was selected as the first poem in the "best of" roundup at the end of the year.



I wanna dance like Gene Kelly,
I said,
I wanna dance, and
When I dance,
I’m gonna dance like Gene Kelly.

Feet flickering like cavalry banners in a Minnesota monsoon,
Toes carving frescoes of artistic epiphany into polished, hard, wood floors,
In rhythm with spiraling symphonies of big band be-bop fantasies,
With brass and strings.
While re-fined ladies, lounging in their diamonds,
Look on from stage-side tables,
And let their itchy fingers wander,
Like neglected wayward children,
To tender flesh,
Between heaving breasts,
To feel flittering echoes of their fluttering hearts
Pounding through tightly necklaced sapphires,
When I start to sing,

And when I sing,
I’m gonna sing like Frank Sinatra.

Flowing molten silver and honey-wine,
Pouring from velvet-covered golden chalices,
Into their parched and hungry ears that runneth over.
Replenishing dim and ashy skin,
Blinding moon-struck doe eyes.
Mascara flash like migrating butterflies,
Cheeks flushing red.
Under the artificial flavoring of powdery rouge.
Like trees falling dead,
Behind closed curtains in concert halls
When I crescendo,
And no dry eye or lap is left in the house
As blouses billow in the gusty wind the applause causes,
When I slide across the floor
On my knees,
Singing,
Arms akimbo,
To stop.
On a fifteen-cent piece by your stiletto,
And looking down at me you know that I’m gonna love you tonight.

And when I love you,
I’m gonna love you like Rudolph Valentino.

My five horse-power camel beating staccato thunder,
Across starlit deserts, I ride,
Hooves pounding sand into glass,
Carrying you astride my lap,
Back to silk-lined walls of a palatial tent.
To lay you on satin and goose down,
In your dressing gown of ibis and ivory,
As my arms encircle your universe,
I will whisper to you secrets of your own heart.
And filtered through the rosy orb of glass our passion creates around us,
The world becomes as fleeting shadows stretched thin.
And we collapse together.
And dream.
And when we dream,
We’re gonna dream like the dream’s the only thing we’ve ever got to lose.

Because it is

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Huntin' & Gatherin'


Punch that clown in the face
till freedom fries fall from his nose,
and tell me that ain't some sweetness
with a hot apple pie on the side,

Friday, January 22, 2010

My Name Is Not


My Name Is Not

My name is not Toby,
Boy,
Nigger,
or Chicken George.

The steel
inside my spirit's
tempered
in a hotter forge

than the sting of the lash
or the glare of the sun
than the rage
behind my teeth.

Torture my skin
and keep me bound
it's just my body
beneath your feet.

The name, intact,
spoken
from my father's lips.

The body, finite
grown
within my mother's hips.

Before the flesh
was the world
before the world
was the word

and my word,
my name
is not your thing
to take.

Beat this mortal vessel
from dawn till the end of the day
I knows who I is, I AM.
My name is Kunta Kinte.

Author's Note: There was a day last year when Lavar Burton invited everyone on twitter to be Kunta Kinte for a day, so that's where this came from.

Shortly after posting it, I changed "nigger" to "picker" to be more sensitive, but in light of the recent Huckleberry Finn censorship discussion, I reversed that decision, and restored the original wording.

the burden (poem)

the burden

pain in the ass
piece of shit

you are a curse
put on me by my mother
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