Archive for ‘Midwest’

February 17, 2018

375

cold, and the famous old man statue
conjures me with a grimace of polished rust.
walking the circle on St Paul campus, I see
naked trees, they are hung up with rope;
scholars going somewhere on them to the the sunshine.
just above the snow and ice and frost and knots.
cutting my buzzed sheen head, skimming my glance.
a glare off the white. constant this time, lunch…
and we just spoke softly of bugs and his Vietnam
and Hodson in letters, inquests, and ways to
go about taking care of others’ dogs.
and making dog food and fixing end boards.
cold, there, cold outside. had a coffee too.
just walking around the circle, such is life.

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February 13, 2018

un-stir-crazy

layering is my relevant exercise
in wintertime around these parts,
try to stay un-stir-crazy.

February 3, 2018

Cub on Larpenteur yesterday

the Cub on Larpenteur
let me know
what i never wanted to do again…
allow myself to be treated low.
i never wanted to do that in the first place.
had to to pay the rent at first tho.
still that fear that lives in my head.
still there is a future out there.
thoughts: maps, directions: how did i get here?
he was an old man beyond driving wind, pushing carts.
no reprieve, no help–he told it all to some kid walking in.
– wonder how he got there?
i will go some other way, away.
surprises, changes, alterations, non-linear.
he told his colleague. up close. personal.
this was him and not him and this was him.
i don’t want that path, i don’t want that.
kaleidoscope of me spinning, no peace.
i walked past to chicken, beer, whiskey, a cashier, etc.
could not see a wedding band on his hardened hands.
wasn’t sure if he was wearing gloves.
at the ground, at the lot, at the cars…
highwaters, dark, wet, soaked, dried, stained; do it again next day.
does anyone have to have pain?
didn’t matter, let me know.
didn’t matter, let me know. let me go.
didn’t matter, no one saw this but me i guess.
six years ago, i did six years, i figured.
i bought my things and carried on, had to go, goodbye.
i think this old-timer stayed. not sure why.
i guess we all gotta eat.

January 21, 2018

as your lovely boat is sinking on the horizon, it’s all being caught on camera for everyone else to review later as they eat

your dinghy is sinking
slowly,
five tens and twenties–no worries
a tube is distracting
asking you
to invest in triangle shirts
and help a flooded mass institution prosper,
their sharks spin wild
blood in these gray waters,
coming for you, now, every day rising, surfacing:
account negative and sinking
no life jackets, no reprieve,
no stopping these silent, faceless monsters, as
your enemies await at their beach house afar
funded by you,
filming the metaphor of your financial demise,
to later monetize it on YouTube..
open that periscope,
your actual debt death sells,
asking you to buy into it.
all problems are yours but your own.
telling these pills will cure your buyers remorse more later.
now, now, now, now, now, got to have it.
look the same, talk the same, feel the same or shame.
you need that new thing, Jack.
like that life jacket voided yesterday, today, tomorrow again.
oh, it will happen, that water will come up edging.
those teeth will close fast and faster.
stomach twisting.
theirs need to be filled.
but carry those signs which do not signal you for better,
and shout language that does not tell your story true.
the more in the water, the greater the feast.
and show that you do care
because they don’t when they eat.

November 26, 2017

list of life and lists

a work                                                     of art in progress
such                              a sort of sorts
too much                                  of some things, nothings
a few       more beers, more cheers at the rail
of mice                           and men–books
a river                                    runs thr            ough it–fictions
lighting            the lights Riverside Park
dogs                  killing rabbits   in the backyard
in the                           morning                as
coffee          drips down, down, down, yum…
here the elevation                                     of the bluffs
is high                    as the heavens  call it home, come back,  call it home
a whole city below aglow,  November cold, no snow
sacred, blessed, meaningful flag waving above
bald eagles soaring on pause, floating: not sure what it sees
shining, driftless center like me
movement, more movement between
a city with its shit together
(they collect the leaves and
they have nice streets and it shows)
running in circles, no pot holes
talking the same, politics and pain
narratives of truthful ideas
narratives of appeal (so real)
exhausted we climb on
exhausted we climb on Eagle Bluff Trail
crumpled leaves and sweet sap
and a tree dying on top of an Impreza, I think
cafe jazzing my way through it all

November 22, 2017

maybe hate is love in disguise

the thing about hating on another’s artwork
is inspiring, i suppose.
i realized this the other day.  that
when someone hated on my artwork it was
more of a show of love.  (it confused tho)
one’s endearing compassion to say.
notice, they noticed and expressed
inspired as it were,
that indelible stated word
so inscrutable, they called my artwork “gay” .
how they used language so well to tell
what was on their expansive mind, so kind.
and in kind i thank them for the brain power passed, twas amassed.
O’ lovely comments like bricks hit w/ light yesterday afternoon
like the bright smile of my great child, or his laugh,
like making it home no deers dead on 52 south.
nothing like it.  dying sliver of a moon on some purple horizon,
no stressful drive, no worry.
things just happened that way, even replies, they say,
sometimes beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
sometimes that beholder is a troll-bot somewhere.
sometimes beauty is a subjective idea.
anonymity is a gem to be polished,
is a life to be assessed by everyone always.
felt good waking up to that notification.
felt good to just think about it in appreciation.

October 21, 2017

52 south in minnesota and some thoughts that i can’t escape like the blood on the highway and the lights up ahead

the dead deer leave their stains on 52 south
longer than the sun hangs in Oktober skies wide pale,
i hope to not create that sort of artwork tonight.
probably someone died in the accident at Coates.
glass, lights, backed up traffic and silence at the crossing.
entrails and scattered viscera, nature and force.
later, i hope this poem doesn’t take a dive on me.
matter and brain matter and matter matted.
where softly playing wind chimes alight and inflatable
Halloween decorations on the lawn greet us, hum.
barefoot in the street talking visas and books and
cars and presents, my mom’s birthday is this weekend.
above some star dies and the cemetery up the hill knows.
at least two beers on the couch, check in at motel home,
at least some pictures. my little man is awake past his bedtime.
teaching language in the morning, then they talk like me.
these strangers aren’t strange, they are nice.
wake in the morning. talk talk talk talk talk talk
talk talk talk talk talk talk. what’s the problem?
i know how she is when she is the way she is, love.
same costume as the last 5 years or so, goodwill find.
there is no surprise like there is no surprise.
an animal jumps in front of the dashboard, it’s a leaf.
there is not change there, no change there, there.
lock and dam no. 7 is an empty street where josh died.
dan will be at jules and wives will be in andere Staaten.
nextday i have coffee and talk to China and think
of the money that i don’t have and need to find somehow.
doesn’t matter, but that fucking deer is dead again now in my head again.

October 7, 2017

saturday morning with my grandpa (how i became me)

saturday mornings could smell
like burnt eggs
and old cigars stamped out years ago,
bacon grease splatting, hiss,
dogs wet fur from the rain coming down,
a damp dusty basement clouded,
unbrushed teeth speaking true words
to loved ones about what will be done
what we might get to,
grandma and grandpa and dad and cats in La Crescent
sitting in a wallpapered kitchen, rented out now,
pantry full, cooking bean soup on the stove,
waiting for NASCAR on sunday, those tomorrows,
and god, or the lord or heavens knows, who cares?
got to get better at it, all of it,
that smell reminds me of nothing now
and the dead and chopping wood in the forest,
and how he would show up with donuts
and his dog, in leather boots, early,
before most “hard workers” today even think about
getting up because he drove semi trucks
to where i live now, just south of us,
until in his mid-seventies,
when he first met me, 70 times my age,
and i can still smell that stuff upstairs.

July 30, 2017

cheap breakfast (over a hot stove in quiet peace frogtown usa, why for fruit and eggs and butter and spice and time and memory)

my morning of foreign language speak spoke
wrapped with a stale beer-feel haze
and cut fruit–tomato, bad reviews, and 2 fried eggs
and contrived paddlewheels
at St Paul later; i am meeting to mend broken pinion gears
for inconsequential yard work
and forget the past
which does not affect us,
so remember not to forget.
with fork turned knife, i cut the
fragile membrane and watched it ooze and
sluice yellow the barebones plate: perfect presentation,
where is Gordon Ramsey when you need him? fuck.
if only for toast–
but they say processed carbs are so bad
with guesswork lexicons,
and so is not just agreeing with…
but dont talk those politics out loud in public,
they could hurt your morning stomach,
could hurt your local pride,
could hurt you like if you were that red fruit right there
unresponsive, go letting out,
about to be devoured by something much bigger
than you could ever truly imagine
and only for cheap breakfast
next to lowly coffee more precious.

July 23, 2017

if monsters could leave the city

oh tru morning between aging cof
fee and covfefe and chuck dick,
one resignation away from a full deck,
and the meeting the Washington press
people who are good actors–
i mean really fucking good actors,
for saying things like fair and
balanced like a fat thumb on
the honest scale but it doesnt matter.
not like the gamma rays cutting,
not like a baby bouncing new teeth
through the clouds haloing above
the old trees and cut grass: lawn boy:
a broken pinion and the late sunday paper.
more gas on the ground than in it,
more save the world than wtf? locally
heard a domestic disturbance yesterday,
saw someone stealing a mainstreet car.
i suppose if i dont shave
the people who i teach in China wont care
probably wont notice beyond my American smile…
coffee again, father john misty again;
i like the art on the vinyl.
car parked in our odd garage.
monday take out our hot garbage.
so many movements to make,
only got to make movements.
i want to take the time to watch the snake
eat itself slowly as they say bye bye Betsy–
to hear her say she wont have it,
and i think what does
she think of party-made monster,
probably should get through Frankenstein,
probably should hideout somewhere.
or like a scapegoat leave the country.
if monsters could leave the city.