Archive for ‘USA’

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.

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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.

July 19, 2017

american times with jim morrison

our heads of dead fuses
our mouths agape true voids
a spectacle for wires
a mind melts to ash, to lava
thoughts run thin, amok
edgewise at horizons flesh
horizontal at still birth
vertical at death above a sink
eyes cutting the mirrors veneer
blood wet like new glue
mind between here and there
mostly gone anon along
and someone was something-else
as the church bells rang like a lost phone
and the doors closed tightly
to darkness and morning like
vacated loving foreign tenants
of our american times
of our american times

July 16, 2017

compost in st paul

new life out of old growth
rinds and skins in the compost
tomatoes potatoes and avocados
new plant grows out to the sun

July 7, 2017

hands foot and mouth disease

… yeah, being a dad you see things,
saw hands foot and mouth disease again
from the other end, i say this now
but when i was 17 years-old i got it too:
sister taylor was an infant
she had it at the time and my hands turned
to blisters that couldnt pop with knives
feet turned to pins and needles and nettles
and things that couldnt pocked hot and roiled
something not nice at all
the doctor said, yeap hands foot and mouth
like yeap, i had HIV in 2007 and it was positive
and then it was false positive and gone
and my head is still living with the idea of dying
living with this is not a medical facility
living with the idea that labels changed me then
now my son has hands foot and mouth disease
like its a problem but i can relate
O’ you havent had it? you got it easy
and now he is teething to top it all off in twilight
i love sleep for not having it
i love having someone like me growing up
love is a beautiful thing
Plato said a grave disease of the mind
now look at my appendages

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.

June 25, 2017

i notice and i think you should too

i will tell you, if you want to be unique,
differently skewed and
especially noticed or adulated where you are,
dont be a poet.
coffee and beer are my fuel during this grey day;
opposites like that do attract, like defined words and me.
(Sunday morning coming down,
wrote this yesterday while
teaching students how to speak Midwestern English in other countries (plural).
i could say i am international by now, wont.)
(anyway) to get noticed, get a real job,
work very hard every day, and
mind your own personal business
in this capitalistic venture,
otherwise known as your broken dream land,
otherwise known as real life.
dont take photos to share on social media;
nor add filters for likes, #NoFilters.
nor wear a bunch of makeup
to make up for your flawed human makeup.
nah, you needn’t do that.
just be, thats really real and really noticed.
people think you got a problem then.
tell them to unplug and not scroll.
my breath applauds me, my feel stings as truth alone.
that would be unique in a world where going viral on CNN Breaking BS
or standing on 94 W or E rebelling pointedly,
maybe cutting off ambulance service to someones grandmas dilemma,
like the rest of the thoughtful group
over 12 peers turned to one loathsome local department,
under adjectives: fascist, systematic, murderers et al.,
is considered some sort of special star sticker and truly esoteric
and great advocacy and activism novel, true, poignant, necessary.
but i understand sort of, well i do…
it seems too obvious and you know it…
you do.
products of media brought to you by you and look at those pricey ads.
so go ahead and think,
how can i not be like them, working for someone who doesnt pay me,
the others that do the same thing (as others)
that i do, yet with more good friends
with more important memberships
with heavy solicitations–sell my books, ever heard of pulp?
pulping happens.
with more performances at more trendy publishing houses
at more hipster coffeehouses.
i also wrote a poem today that wont get noticed.
like everyone else(s).
it is bigger than pale generalizations.
more complex than a Saltine cracker
and its box–squarely.
you know, i wont put some same sign in my shitty yard
for people to like.
for i dread mowing and wont water for more work.
the neighbors enjoy my company already, go ask.
there isnt enough space on it already too,
to say what i want to say, with open meaning,
and it wont make the community feel better anyway
because no group backs it, i havent donated to prove i believe,
and because it would say: each individual should do better
themselves as a unique individual, individualists themselves.
because if it were that easy to fix the neighborhood, with signs,
then everyone would be doing it…
and if the doorhandle opens the door i won’t fix it either.
even if i kick the door in and the handle is still on it,
then probably the doorhandle still works.
like poetry–it doesnt take much really.
getting noticed though…
so i dont know what else to write,
that’s true or fiction or thought.
besides: nothing special here, just i notice(d)
and i think you should too.

June 21, 2017

my schedule.

Sometimes they tell me to not take the train
because of scheduled preventative maintenance.  
So there is a bus, the number 3.  That is OK.  I can deal.  
I’ll have to walk a bit on Lexington.  Anyway, sometimes I read
while on the usual train in the morning,
while sitting next to naked monks speaking in tongues
while fresh girls get out of their seats
and move to the door for fear he might find them evil
or something like snakes to crush.
White spittle crazy in the corner of his lips.  
Then I go to the back of the train too–to get away
and watch reflections on plastic or the sky above
or building’s tops and tree lines.  
Sometimes.  Sometimes we make loud abrupt stops.  
Sometimes I get nauseated and ride the train backwards
on accident or lack of space.  
My mom tells me she might get seasick.  
The green line is great if you like gentrification
that causes rent that makes rental refrigerators empty
and arguments to flare up in summer heat with no AC
like mosquitoes on naked arms near still lakes.  
I don’t care though.  But then I do.
I love the way I get to where I am going.  
Now on the number 3 it will take a bit longer…
It takes me 20 minutes and a few pages to turn.
From there I will have to walk longer in the heat.  
I get some knowledge from my book.
I carry it under my arm and bang my wallet with it–check.
It’s all in my hand, information.
It’s mostly tax free and friendly
and I don’t have to make friends.  
But sometimes it gets canceled
and I realize that it means more to me than most things
because it is so easy (and when it’s not there…)
and it is so convenient
and everyone talks about it
and tells you how great it is
and wishes they could live in a big city
because all these things are close
and nice and expensive and very cool.
But tomorrow I can’t take the train to my regular station.
Probably get a ride and talk about my schedule.

May 21, 2017

auspicious believers (so i cant. so i wont.)

we can never know or understand relateable language no matter the familiarity in whatever function we choose to fancy.  interpretations involve smells and times and deaths and climes and thoughts that no longer exist; bygone dusts could tell better stories, persuade better truths.

i reach for douglass and derrida, and they ask me not to in their words, but i don’t know or understand the meaning.  they say our nostrils could not handle the 1800s and we use words from that season in ways we couldnt image.

tell me its wrong young scholar, fad intellectualists, your precise wisdom is your precise debt.  trapped in a box.  chained.  shackled.  nailed in.  it won’t be the last time.  mind askewed biased abused.  never knowing language; i teach it too.  want to understand study the single meaning for a life and pull it out timid.

i beg you to caution your wits safety.  close and zip your loose lips.  stick a sock in it, save those ships.  there is no exact exactly.  here is a free lesson.  don’t get me started on labels.  sad fools pretend to command it just as you see and read.  ask them about affect or effect, their there theyre, its and its.  sound familiar?

its not, never will be, never has been, never was.  concomitant, concocted, intermingled, fluid, assumptions that others have brains.  and they work well.  when they spin wheels in voids tending to spires metals and idols just past their eyes, telling you what you are with these same words so sure they arent wrong.  try not to laugh.  so right, believe.

so i cant.  so i wont.  every single word.

May 13, 2017

he died doing what he loved

the day before my dad died
my grandma told me to call him,
she handed me the phone and i dialed.
he answered and asked me to visit him in Lanesboro.
per usual, of course i couldnt,
i was busy marrying my cousin
and her new husband,
i was to fish brook trout and hunt morel
at an expansive farm in Highland, MN.
he told me about how midget strippers
were from that area
and he told me he could fly me in a plane
back to the Cities on Sunday. and he could truly.
but i get sick on planes, ex: my whole life.
i would tell him that so he didnt feel bad.
i laughed, so did grandma–a-mid-dementia.
now the cat barfs on the windowsill in St Paul
and i cant move to clean it.
you read, he told me this story.
that was the last i knew of his soul.
now i want an old motorcycle and three kids,
i want a lot of land in the countryside
and to own my own business, sort of like him.
i want to tell rude stories and make people laugh.
all around me is this fabric to weave,
even that old dreaded piece of a phone call
i hide because it worries and bothers
and turns me 4 years younger, less jaded and
more naive. i see him leaving every day is a possibility.
i just wonder when he will come back.
and some believe in ghosts and gods and scripture,
i havent seen much in the way of poltergeists or apparitions;
the afterlife exists now in tongues and no more.
i only feel the ones i never knew
and could care less to just pass
and call my imagination gone astir
or drunken views taken in the timid darkness.
i heard he died doing what he loved a lot,
and when that happens they say it is good.