cross-eyed soul

there’s something there

i see right through you

or i would

if there wasn’t so much refuse inside

read you like a book

that i judged by its cover

but i tell myself i know the whole story

i don’t need no goddamned cliff notes

there’s something there

i’ve seen the likes of you before

you’re just like all the other people who do

that thing that you do that i’ve heard about

on the radio

you fit my concept of ‘to-be-avoided’

or at least ‘-controlled’

you might explode

if we’re not careful

there’s something there

you must be suspicious

of us that we

are suspicious of you

plotting from within your

cross-eyed soul

and canted glance

i fear you for

the harm i know you are

capable of

don’t you dare

come near my family

i can just tell

there’s something there

but maybe it’s

that we don’t

know

each other

at all

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infinite rest

and just how much pain is tolerable

it ain’t up to the individual

to say uncle

acceptable limits are decided upon

by the silent majority who didn’t even know

they were registered to vote

 

we hold eachother

this constellation of individuals

accountable to all of the same standards

without regard to difference of ability, will, spirit,

desire

and we therefore all move closer

to a likeness of the mold

invisible

 

have i given up

trying to illuminate for others

the mechanics lurking behind the scenes

in favor of controlling the machinery

under my immediate stage

which control allows me

some cheap replica of stability

and peace?

 

am i patient,

or complacent?

 

i like this phrase

but i don’t like what its logic

says about my potential:

writing a book that can change the world

is very much dependent on

the world’s ability

to read

home in haggett

i’m back in that familiar closet

whose number of walls still throws me for a loop
two cots, a tiny window,
some sweet music-makin machines
a green-tipped Earl
and infinite excitement for the company at hand
‘i just discussed this at length with new friends,’
any one of us was likely to say,
‘and now it’s our turn’
throw the rocks
kick the cans
brew the tea
feels like i’ve finally
lost it completely – and it feels wonderful
we came to a place of learning
and in finding you
i learned to unlearn a suite of society’s
sour preferences
i forgot how to knock
i forgot to respect the powerful
forgot how to look in a mirror through someone else’s eyes
forgot my swim trunks
forgot how to talk shit
forgot to forget how to climb treees
forgot the stigma against smoke
forgot to be a virgin
forgot that some people aren’t important
and remembered
how to deeply
deeply
love

crucify christmas

the only way

to have “christmas every day”

is to abolish it once and for all

 

jesus christ

you probably deserved a better tribute than this

some of us earthly humans really tried

to carry your legacy

but the roman state shifted shape

from one conquest to the next

and by the time it succeeded in colonizing

your revolutionary history

we didn’t recognize it as an oppressor

at all

 

i’m really sorry

to inform you that

just as the crucifix has been reduced to a

representation of devotion to the powerful

so has christmas become stripped of even

its own weakened spirit

 

for the sake of historical insurrection

let us attempt to combine

the two turtle-doves,

holiday and cross,

and

crucify christmas

 

christmas, you are hereby charged with the

murder of jesus’

legacy of universal love

and acceptance

in the first degree

you are further charged

with felony assault on life

with money, a deadly weapon,

which was and always will be

found at the scene

of your crimes

 

knowing as we do that

a jury of your peers would sentence you

to a large but manageable fine

and a meager probation,

we, the people

who few still somehow care

for the past, present and future

well-being and prosperity of life

and humanity’s small part within it,

irrevocably sentence

you to death

 

we thought to opt for incarceration

but quickly dismissed the notion of using

your own weapon against you

 

santa, as the footsoldier who carried out

the majority of christmas’ atrocities,

you will be properly shackled at the feet

and strapped to a large wooden cross

which burden you will haul three quarters of a mile

from the motorcade in the parking lot

to the center stage

in the courtyard

of the mall

of america

 

there you will be forced

to raise the cross yourself

and lean it on the corpse

of a noble pine,

whose life you are also guilty of ending,

you will be tied vigorously to your final home

with the largest incandescent light-strings imaginable,

stripped to the nude

and pelted with chestnuts

as your feet roast on an open fire below

 

hanging there like a yuletide stocking

you will slowly begin to notice the

menagerie of your accomplices,

the bankers and lawyers,

marketing agents and mothers,

musicians and poets,

pundits and pope,

ups drivers and hallmark sale associates,

talking snowmen,

icy polititians

and all the little boys and girls

both naughty and nice,

all of us complicit in and therefore guilty of

the great homicide of our time,

bound in tinsel and wreath,

locked up with you

on that silent night

inside the mall

whose only remaining commodity

is revenge

 

listen, santa baby,

listen, all, to the sweet silver bells

of justice that sound

as the emancipated slave

formerly known as rudolph

lights the entire mall ablaze

with the fire hidden in his nose,

putting evil Decemberism

once and for all

to sleep

in heavenly peace

 

 

a view

from here

i see peace

 

i didn’t recognize it at first

mistook it for my own

feelings

feelings of joy

of calm

which themselves are wonderful

but no

they are not part of

the peace i see

from here

 

i am a temporal man

from here

from here

the peace is timeless

all its fragility and chaos

its perfection

its blemishes

are fluid

and cannot be packaged

it stands

so why

can i see this peace

from here?

 

from here

i find a new perspective

on perspective

i make out

distant reflections

in the hall of mirrors

the water of this peace

i feel my childhood crawl

out of the sea

i see

from here

 

from here

i see without light

the compelling current of time

tricking me into thinking

i could reduce this

enormity

to the size of my

breast pocket though i am in

error

please

don’t take me

away

from here.

orbit

the day seems more whole

unto itself, a friend

dependable

 

guilty of exhausting myself

with questions like,

‘what’s your name?’

and

‘why do i recognize that smell?’

because my new acquaintance

has promised to support me

in my exploration

and couldn’t care less

if i gave any new discovery its name

 

witnessing the invisible

wind composes music

to which the trees dance

and in

all the dynamic rhythms of our days

i shut everything out

to focus on the single leaf

 

it was not the first to jump from

familiar heights

nor will it last

or be

for long

 

have you ever smelled a piece of quartz?

that is the water of my new chapter

where the lack of strong sensation

is the substance of comfort

and reassurance

 

yes, i will pick up this soggy deer hide

and let it fill me with dreams of loss

and conquer

toes frozen, heart ablaze

 

somehow it is so clear

that everything here is contained

in its own void

 

i let it rain on my laptop

and with my feet firmly in the soil

i fly in dependable orbit around my

own history

and hear the prayer

that needs no recipient

alarm clock

radiation spewing

light from your phone at 5 am

frozen to the screen

while i wrestle with my sub-conscious

six rounds, one hour a piece

it’s a fight to the death

nightly, yeah i’m a survivor

i’ve conquered darth vader’s older brother

while running the nails of my backbone

down a chalk board

i’ve stabbed my father

more times

than i care to count

i’ve emptied a few prisons

in my day

all in a night’s work

but damn

they always fill back up

i’ve pleaded with the lord

ghastly, on high

don’t take my momma, please

you can have my step-sister though

i’ve searched for so many

god damn knee high socks

i couldn’t even tell

you how many soccer games i’ve

been late for

in my dreams

i’ve made love to humans

with shifting body parts, shapes

all taste different

but certainly must be the same person

love is just

love

no matter where i hide it

will always surprise the one it encounters

broken hearts are far more interesting

they don’t smile

but still look good for the camera

lay down under my back

and lick me until i tell you to stop

okay dog that’s enough

i’m trying to ignore my alarm clock