Tag Archives: cool

I Was Remembering

I was remembering the night on the old mattress
Black light Jimi Hendrix stapled to the ceiling
Our pants were around our ankles shirts around our necks
Elvis playing on an 8-track player hidden under the blanket
Your breath was sweet and moist from the wine
Your hands were urgent but they weren’t very experienced
The strength of 10 horses held my heart inside my chest
Your skin was like cream–smooth and flawless
My hands were rough
I was afraid that my calluses would scrape away the finish
But I couldn’t stop at that point
You did though, you sat up and reached for a Salem
I let my shoes hit the floor
Before I began searching for my lighter and the 8-track player
A figure appeared in the doorway
But it disappeared just as quickly
I put a fresh Elvis tape in the player
The smoke from our cigarettes crept out the window
When you pulled your sweater over your head
You messed up your hair but you looked even better
I stopped for a minute to look at you sitting there
I remember falling back into your arms
Elvis filled the room again
And for just that moment I was him
He was me and with you
And ever star in your view
Belonged to me that night


May 19, 2010: After Mixtape

For the Butterfly

Before rum turns to beer and that I trip on a tear in my heart – or my shoe or a thought
About nights like tonight when there’s soul in the fight and the love in the drink that I bought

So I sip and I trip and I laugh at the jokes that fly by on untenable wings
They thrust and they parry and the liquor will carry them into this cool night in spring

Will you write words tonight that you hope will ignite the next troupe of young dreamers you meet?
Will you crawl into bed – words still trapped in your head – while you typer stares back in defeat?

Somewhere at the crossroads of William and Shel
I find that my words have all aimed me toward hell
But if they can get me one more minute with you
I’d gladly consume them and that heart and that shoe

We try to be clever – whenever – we endeavor to put all these thoughts on a page
But it’s tends to be liquor – a little bit quicker – that now has me showing my age

So I’ll say good night to the slow fading light as I wait for my old phone to ring
Tomorrow will be here – but wait just one more beer – and then one more minute to sing…

May 19, 2010
2 a.m.

Home Movies

The lie that I call my childhood
Unfolded before me in 8mm glory
Sputtering along on the sprockets
Wrapped in an eerie rhythmic silence
Images flicker by across the little screen
Frame after frame of irresponsible innocence
The safety that the old shoe box held
has been betrayed
The shelf in the deepest corner
Of my father’s closet
Holds nothing now except for dust
Thick gray dust
The 8mm home movies defy the video age
Much the same way as they defy
My memories of youth

Another Hard Goodnight

A warm body beside me – someone calling to me from the other room
Put away your books and come and love me – make love to me
But I press on with my keyboard and my bourbon and another hard goodnight

Each word becomes an integral piece to a puzzle that I must assemble
There is no warm body for me – not tonight – there is little for an unknown poet
But I press on with my keyboard and my bourbon and another hard goodnight

Bobby Broom’s guitar is my only comfort on this cold mid-winter morning
He plays as if it is only for me while I sip bourbon and reconstruct the magic
But I press on with my keyboard and my bourbon and another hard goodnight

There was a time when I had everything but my pride robbed me of my future
Now there are nothing but reminders of what might have been in a sweeter time
But I press on with my keyboard and my bourbon and another hard goodnight

All of my past crushes are in someone else’s arms tonight however they got there
All of my past dreams are in someone else’s soul tonight however they got there
But I will press on with my keyboard and my bourbon and another hard goodnight
I will press on with my keyboard and my bourbon and another hard goodnight

Another Broken Soldier

I didn’t want to be the one who told him
Nobody wants to face the broken soldier
But someone has to
So there he was belching up beer
and smelling of cheap leather
Another broken soldier who
Upon breaking the ranks – has fallen
He is there waiting for redemption
He is there praying for his soul
He is there kneeling at the altar of his failures
The broken soldier reaches out for comfort
But receives nothing more than a cold drink
This seems – for now – to be enough

I was sad when I confronted him
Nobody wants to confront a broken soldier
But I guess it was my turn
So there we were trading war stories
and drinking long into the night
He was just another man who
Didn’t understand where all the time went
He was there waiting for his next drink
He was there praying for a punch line
He is crawling from the altar that was his life
The broken soldier reaches out for solace
But receives nothing more than a hard slap
This seems – for now – to do him in

Stories from the Back Porch

The unrelenting rain mutes the rhythmic symphony of the birds taking flight
They are trying to leave my father’s yard like I have done so many times in the past
My back porch offers them precarious safety due to the steady foot traffic of the squirrels
Below me a phone rings but not for me – I try to ignore it hoping it will go away anyway
I hear the heavy footsteps cross the floor then the phone stops ringing

Wet cold air sneaks up into my shirt but the serenity of the moment is nearly palpable
Somewhere down the alley a car crushes the gravel kicking up little gray stones
Wild rabbits have converted the abandoned car into a hutch to protect them from the rain

I am eventually offered the phone though I haven’t had coffee yet and should know better
The inane prattling of the voice oozing through the wires would lull me to sleep
Were it not for the stultifying documentation of the breathing death that will not sleep

A natural rhapsody swirls around the porch but can’t permeate the phone lines
One more cigarette to allow me the welcome distraction of burning lungs
One more cup of strong coffee to prop me up against what I am forced to listen to

The cacophony of the bittersweet melody in my own head makes for better dancing
The swelling of the strings against the vibrant thump of the tympani plays in concert
With the blood coursing through my veins and the vigorous beating of my heart

The harbinger heralding the decline of a life I almost had is finally – mercifully – silenced
The conundrum of representing western civilization replaces its amusing simplicity
To archive the lives of those who came before us for those who come after us
To promulgate societal concerns affording them no more dignity than soft white bread
To explore the emotional landscape that purges the loving fool in favor of irony

A soft-boned bird calls to me from a tree decrying my pomposity for all its worth
Her shrill bit of music pierces my heart’s armor for a brief and melancholy moment
Were she wrong I would pluck out her little heart and feed it to the squirrels
But she is right and the brilliance of her song usurps the power of the written word

My consolation is that what I have has been hard earned and come by honestly
Perhaps the little bird must be silenced as well if only to ease my conscience

1:25 in the Morning

the sweet smell of excess
and the opportunity to make
life changing (threatening) decisions
over a battle-scarred laminated table
Naugahyde leather sweats your ass
discontent hangs in the air
like cotton candy above us
calculated shallow discontent
with nothing to gain or lose
by staying safely cradled
in the booth in the restaurant
that faces out on to a once-proud highway