daily construction every night

record storage
with me a little more than regrowth
the illegality of grafting fruit tree
branches into city elms and maples
starves a people
and starving in this body
becomes willful

the same reason i think of you so often
the same drawer i keep my sunscreen in
starving needs a necessity to function

starving takes time
more than i can wrangle
into my mouth
where the baby grackle beaks
call out for another fat wriggling
minute and no i won’t
teach them to fly by falling

i cannot divide this lack of necessity
by another zero
i cannot paint by number your portait
but i have this red and this cream

i trace the line
number 62
the paper is thin and the color
bleeds
my hand shakes into 64
it should have been gold
like an empty stomach

it is a mistake
i admit and i would admit more
if there was room next to the joy
of starting over/filling a mouth
with a mouth

gate 2

i’ve come across a ruin
a wren’s nest abandoned
in this swirl of twigs a crib
a wizard’s hat of tree to crown
the sidewalk meeting pedicured bush

what rituals did the wings make
beaks dipping into its dark
if i could sing you to sleep
with their mythologies
archaic empty cords this twine

how the falcons returned
and what dullness these night suns
mean lining the hard ground
where the other small lights
carry other sobs
other angers into the wild

i catch my hair in my shoelace
bending over to touch it
this machu pichu and the wind
weaves just so
just so tonight
dad i thought i heard your voice

it would have been your birthday

in the hollow archeology
i promise not to stay
in the celebration much longer
i’m trying to catch the dialect
record its ritual whispers
before it’s lost

prevention hotline

at the moment i thought of giving in
to what
as if i would tell you but to giving in
in/to the morning
i read an article again i know but
hear me out
CRISPR’s gene therapy
designer dna
rolled right over this embryo
this long want to nonexistence

not like yesterday doesn’t exist
or like equality or like blind justice
not something willed or past
no figment of possibility

but simply not and not now
and not ever available
to say/to make love come rushing
out of my mouth
while my hands
mishapen fingers making
mishapen figures
building cities of cracked streets
unstable bridges

this ability to love violently
is inherited
some genetic mutation
and isn’t love at all

it shouldn’t be christened like that
water in the eyes and some man
holding it who will forget the ceremony
after the full moon and evening wine

but if you can delete a blood disease
from the gene pool without destroying
a life
i thought
maybe i can too

 

no u-turns

i like to get caught
in the crossfire
between left and right
hemispheres of the brain

between a man chasing another
man with a shovel
to trip into the street
rush hour traffic
swerve with me around the body

as the chased falls
the shovel aims right at the base
of the skull
spinal cord my love is ripe
what anger and love know
of our softest spaces

he’s just a few steps away
if i could just
care for my body like this

i wrap my arms
into a hug underneath
the shovel wielding body
as it drops to the street
you could say it sounded
like a dinner bell or
a helmet crashing into a car door

and all that nonsense
for a bruised eye
socket and nose
elbowed so expertly
clapping an encore punch
to the lip

another has a gun aimed
at us jumping out of a Mercedes
he’s in a suit and turquoise tie
the escapee the shoveler and i
all three of us are on the ground

all of us safe with one trigger inch
away from a neat hole within us

all afternoon i looked for it
your smile opening this cortex
this body in the sidewalk
that moment of a voice
what i found instead
bullets nestled against a barrel
a riot van on State St.
anything to get my adrenaline fix

fire exit

should you use a bag of baby carrots
as a paperweight?

what if they’re on the trunk
of a black Honda Civic?

the real question is where
do all the orange shavings go

the traffic cones aren’t answering
but they point toward the sky

i’ve been looking at the bushes
those capable cup bearers

there’s a baby rabbit underneath
the constant leap when i take a step

the door when there is no emergency creates a hazard

maybe i’m mistaken about aluminum
but it didn’t keep my sandwich
from drying out overnight
i shouldn’t have trusted material
needing bends and breaks
to protect its contents

isn’t it timeless /takes wrinkles
in one second of a fist
doesn’t recognize what air
and sunlight can do to a body

roll it out and tear it up
it must think you can press loved ones
down into a mirror
tear pieces off them
to keep and save cleaning time
on baking sheets and yes aluminum

must suppose there is no difference
between and beneath
when the oven light is on
what it means to be seen

residents are asked to not use the courtyard this month

flourescent my dearest goblin gathering
the children have come to collect themselves
let them be their own rumpelstilskin

just this once

once is enough for myth
once is enough to swallow
a new religion

once is so close to a pattern
i was sure i heard twice down the hall
talking to deb about her sourdough spring break

they seem like good office friends
and the leftover cookies jovulate
once upon a twice, there there first born child

once your lungs had no air in them
you could focus your efforts on growing
instead of breathing, just imagine

maybe that’s my problem
once your heart had no chambers
and once again you had no bones

you could fit through any thing at all
like an octopus
once is so hard to keep still

all those tentacles even this once

keeps asking for another
why start and finish a list with the number one
i do that all the time i guess

to do
1. find a therapist
that’s a really good start, once

i do or once i don’t
once is happy to know
upon a time could follow

and then once will be certain
in a fixed moment that was measured out
by human hand what a blessing

once blessing meant blood
this is how i know you are holy

once like this

and once like that
your fist on my cheekbone
my fist on your cheekbone

your fist in my stomach
you said i think you’re angry once
i can’t remember who said we should hit each other first

or why once turned into a library

but if i start with just once
just to get it out of the way
there’s no need to know what kingdom

this is or who’s giving the story
once belongs to no one
all that’s left is telling time

 

 

the gallery seats are actually alright for the price

wasn’t an eye involved
it was / practiced in looking
like it saw the truth of a moment
of a person of a theatre

which hands move the red lights
who touches blue
what the pulleys hold / ropes to

a background painted
two trees self grafted onto their own
singular trunk shared
one southern magnolia
one oak / their hunger roots

branches with ornaments opalescing
into the bark / what once were twigs
from a party / no one remembers
the shed across the path
ivied and matching glass bulbs

it must have been two eyes
made of screws and gargantuan blooms
the kind that could cradle you
in their palms and shade
the entire stage in spotlight

suppose the courage to say hello required the selfishness of a savior complex

this can’t always be true but
the other day in one sentence
i told Biz how i wanted to apprentice
as a tailor not just because

i would like to
know the human form by
what holds it
and how to fit someone so
neat and flattering

as if i could
be paid to compliment someone
for years at wakes and graduations
by running hands along
seams/the way to open

ourselves and others willingly
but as i said this
i detailed every way/my fingers
trembled/how i don’t eat enough
and i probably couldn’t

make people feel comfortable or
measure with certainty or have
the patience to love them
how they deserved
instead of how i wanted to

dear alex [jones 3]

i can never decide if moving is stressful or comforting. not as if a decision to feel any type of way makes the feeling true. i once decided i was in love. i also chose to hate popcorn but once the pans were packed and all i had was the microwave, a black box of hope with a door like an etch-a-sketch–you might not believe what a kernal can do. does it make any sense to conceal something to protect it? and what about radiation. you couldn’t grow anything with a puffed up buttered pleasure. stop asking. i saw a meme that people ruin things like good news, rubbing sodden fingers on the front page making it impossible to read. it could be you need more dirt than that to make things grow. i embellished a little but you know all about that and what i mean. which. i don’t know but i’m moving again and i ran out of boxes to hold what secret hopes i’ve collected. they aren’t plans or theories. no structure to speak of and that’s why they’re hard to pack up into cambrian explosions or cerrmonies for the dead. i should say i used my address as the return on the envelope in case we don’t speak until then.