Archive for ‘theatre’

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

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July 1, 2017

rabbit in my heads

i followed a little grey
rabbit as it
leapt at the outside
window low while

hanging my curtain
readying the act
talking to China
as they talk back, my show.

i watched the tree
tied for its stiff branches
noticed leaves
all around on the ground, thinking…

going upstairs two dogs lay
startled and wait,
and startled again and came
at me to the gates.

above at the coffee pot hot
readied the night before,
here, much surprise
take it just black, i take it back.

tho my woman startled as
i left the bed
thinking i was child
and i was not, she said.

again but out the high window
a rabbit, same one, came
leapt on red bricks
of a neighbor’s drive.

ere we came to a locked door evening
the green grass straight
mosquito birds and
they wanted us to join,

told them “no, maybe… thanks”
broke the new fence
went around to a
La Crescent unlocked door

and here i stand, mug, ready to teach
watching a rabbit go about
thinking like us all too
it must eat breakfast.

April 30, 2017

new motivation: no reprieve, no peace

they say fix one problem at a time
and then you reach the base of a mountain,
trying to stay warm and dry
and then it rains–why?,
you can see the dampness on the walk outside.
they tell you to get a real job,
get a second too, and still you are a slave
for land that you will never own
and always pay for on your own, drone…
and most of the poets i know talk about the
biggest problems/issues/talking points, ones that are truly
out of the imagination across the nation–seems
nice and unbelievable, only because
i have fought wars over paying rent
abused furniture because of college debt.
it was really nothing personal, but it follows your person.
as if just doing and getting focused is cake.
seems nice to be able to forget, to relate.
seems nice to be able to hesitate, wait…
doing that no more, the more chores.
rents in St Paul are like walking through closed steel doors.
and then you wake up in it.
decide, now. buy now. i want to hide now, some how.
all ashamed, all to blame, all made UP, games.
solve one of them at a time,
and the floodgates just opened,
flames in a paper factory surrounded by 40 gas stations,
and about a million dying suns,
and they start another protest.
they write another book that their editor/publisher friends like.
i am just hoping the tomatoes don’t die
in the backyard cold–draped with ragged blankets
that might be food later,
and that another collection agency doesn’t call
i’ve tried to block them all…
all because i was sick
all because of insurance
all because of medical
all because of this.
i told my colleague a joke onetime about how if
the mafia came and broke your legs with baseball bats
you would have to deal with something worse
right after:
and that is the health care industry
of america. yeah. go fix that, you activists.
i pray that you never get sick, in a secular way.
one thing at a time, becoming an extra.
now please donate to my cause.

March 10, 2017

a flower underground

i knew what it felt like to be a ghost,
or an earthbound flower,
all information, all the time
on these matters: doxing and politics,
when that is all we absorb in our bones.
where the oatmeal ran cold
below contemporary jazz notes
and a vase full of roses.
here were also books in layers
onioned out over our wooden shelves.
and dying temptation had me
money in my pockets–full,
rich like those other in-tune saps,
unwanting and vainglory lame,
found doing the same ways,
for another 8 years with no change.
then i read through it entirely,
a children’s book saved me.
Fox In Socks again, very closely, and smiled,
we don’t do that enough;
it’s lonely at the top,
it’s quiet at the top,
other people hate the top–what hate(?).
humor, the distasteful, slop.
i think about time and how it escapes me,
i think if i could make it stop
and smell the fancied spring flowers
i’d want to make it start again.
i’d know that they were never really there.
modern days of trials and errors
never let you live it down;
beauty never seen, a flower underground.

February 18, 2017

this morning here is what i did…

on Saturdays i can usually
drink a whole pot of coffee, not just half
so it sits until the next day and maybe
goes into a growler in the fridge.

my stepfather says it’s a waste to make less
than a full pot of coffee, so today i feel
accomplished and un-wasteful. on the way
to write this i played with the stinky cat

with a painful foot that possesses an ingrown
toenail on the big toe and has athletes
foot unrestricted. i turned on the kitchen
light and opened the shades and perused

the backlot as i filled the pot with tap water.
my wife changed a dirty diaper and prepared
for work. i cleared my mind for getting my
ID updated and a new credit card;

i would have to change accounts. i poured what
was left of the old coffee from yesterday
into a tall glass, added creamer and drank.
thought about how i won’t buy beer this weekend

and how our podcast went so well. it’s things like these
that matter, keep the full pot full, positive.
my stepdad was right, and then she walked in
to ask what i was doing in here, listening

to funky soul on Google Home and writing.
waiting for the full pot of coffee to be done.

January 28, 2017

adulting in st paul on a saturday, and then belfast

here for
an empty glass
growler
once filled
with coins. $52.something.
turned into food.

the capital hanging
its pale dome
on the dim shoulders’
of University Ave
in the fore.

there, loving couples
at a cross-
walk, smiled;
where i’d
been before,
and am now.

the statue of liberty
played by a man,
nausea teal,
holding this bright sign:
we pay cash inside,
how american, on this corner.

i sit in a turn
pulling to the side,
brown bags and
local ipas in the trunk,

mouthing an old song
while feigning
Ryan Gosling
in Drive–mechanic’s glove hands,
tight grip on
the supple wheel.

all before 11 am
some intersection
crossing Lexington Parkway
and light rail tracks
in St Paul, going, hungry, mad.

*

and then, thinking of
a hotel in Belfast
conversing continental divides
over continental
breakfast,

and the divided conversation,
and the painted murals,
and how
people took photos
on their phones
inside of a bus because we couldn’t safely get out.

December 16, 2016

proud to be an american

i very much suppose that
i am proud to be an american,
the individual kind especially,
the kind that isn’t
like the group-think kind
that group-thinks
about big things nationally,
and maybe seldom locally,
unless it’s an opportune time,
like election season or media season,
not askew sharply by
what you think i should “know” and do,
and that others don’t,
even if our freedom of speech
can be very costly and
the weather is more potent
than the law or protesters, and
people want to change
the rules after the buzzer blows
and i can’t think
of anywhere else i would
rather be, maybe–besides
green ireland, with my wife and son,
because, i am very proud
to be an american for
we always get back up together
and we always have some sort of hope.

December 11, 2016

mission control, i got a cold.

ah… mission control,
my pink floyd head
can’t handle the
layered, fluffy driven
snow. i thought
about that easy idea
for a moment and
shoveled it past fast;
a dog’s muted bark echoes;
beyond cut crystals
that adorn clear glass.
what a cold day to be
spreading out on this
red yoga mat, sooo ready
to take a shit,
ready to sip my coffee
with some honey in it,
in a tall white mug.
sort-of, kind-of like me
in the right light.
ah… mission control,
where is john glenn,
where is our politics
as usual, where is
my old cold medicine?
got to watch meet
the press, got to…
tell me what i should do.

December 10, 2016

cold as cold as cold and cspan

it is 6 degrees in frogtown, mn,
i am inside sick watching cspan

and a baby sleep in his rock
& play, wife in the kitchen watching

a cracked screen. my face is full
of snot, head full of congestion, watching

talking heads tell me about “fake news”
and debates and their influences.

(easy, i could take their words for it
they probably don’t care about mine.)

someone wears a bandaid on his cheek;
the president wants a deep dive

investigation; and the red hot chili
peppers had a forgotten album in 2004, says reddit.

i wonder about where i was at that time,
i don’t know how that all factors

into everything, but mostly i care
about what is right here, around me.

wooden floors and naked feet–pallid,
lemon sinks to the bottom of my mug

as a blue whale in the south pacific,
muddy water coffee waits on a tablecloth,

plastic snug on the windows, electrical heaters
and baby toys. a coat hangs slack

like yesterday. i know how hillary
felt when she fell into that van,

now i’m with her. now i am sick.
now i am achy as a lab skeleton cold.

December 8, 2016

bundle up

ere the cold wind
hardened person debacle,
post-repast,
i become less like
those who represent me
and more like myself,
still running from its presence.
we are found, as errant snow
in misplaced cracks
along the street–
never should have been there.
swirling excitedly
at the bus stop proper
under pink and sable skies,
this industry: dying trees, real waits,
away from it all,
lights out in the house,
purely darkened for late payments.
a book stands in my side pocket,
slick along the turns,
a clear door opens, “Hello, sir.”
and then the same door closes again
to shield me from it.
ere the cold wind, just as
it touches me whole.