Posts tagged ‘milkweed editions’

February 26, 2016

For-Profit Poets (What Bugs Me)

i wonder if the gnat in the shower mist
understands that money changes art.
the very idea of creating something for
pay transforms the something you create.

as if you aren’t going at it for self,
but now going at it for millions. this comedian
bug in our bathtub garden had the sense of
humor to remind me the importance of not

knowing, of not assuming, of not trying to be
the best in any situation, because there is only
self happiness inspired by the true muse.
and nothing more. and those words changed

for the pennies they paid, and some poets
would rather fill their bank accounts than self
actualize. and especially not talk about it.
notice it in similar words and formulas and

themes around these twin towns. i’ve seen
art on the green line, art on the transit, art
at the office desk top in non-profit form that
gave more to the world, so much more.

and i’ve begged and asked of some time to
merely experience, and some think they
have a chance at competition that proves
nothing more than some of us like just this.

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August 10, 2015

untitled 10/08

The sound of white fan blades, nimble cat’s feet,
and heavy outside traffic
woke with the beeping alarm.

Monday life was on its way,
just before breakfast, shower and shave.

Pieces of inspiration fell off in stretches
and movements onto the wooden floor.

As a backdoor opened to musty wet rugs
and well watered plants,
at a place where occupants had been days away.

Coming to again as rebirth:
a second, a minute, a day, a week, a moment chance;
where we’d thought we’d be now is the past.

We were housed by such movements
of certain contraptions, waking, stirring, just as—
sounds and actions unplanned,

came over and overlapped.

July 27, 2015

Twin Cities Poets and Publications

The only change they want
is the change they make,

even if it’s the same.

July 10, 2015

Do We Ever Actually Sleep?

Entering new worlds to escape another
I woke up from a dream in a lonely bed.
Real life sat next to it on the nightstand,
in the early stretches, in “slept like a rock”
preparation for what’s to come. Today
was like any other, though different—shall
we double: it is shit and it is great. I would
cite Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, but
they are dead. I would cite Anton Chigurh,
but he is nowhere to be found. “They are.
It is.” Those statements defining the
day, the morning, the thrown pillows, drool
stained, and crumpled blankets with their cat
hair, are your shell, your cocoon exited.
They rest there, waiting for another moment
to bring adventure, where you fall into the
fold and escape this life to REM, to where
monsters and mistresses await, where gold
and garbage stay; past loved ones welcoming
you in boats, and in jest. That to this, this
to that. Don’t become unwrapped for awoken
reality hits full on hard. There fellow man
meets to never actually meet. We relate,
but never truly. Reaching for the water on
the dusty dresser top, cat at my feet, shades
drawn, another day to walk to the kitchen,
open the fridge, to make breakfast, marks
and tracks, to make me. I enter this world
from another. I wonder, do we ever actually
sleep? And then I wake from this dream.

May 1, 2015

Difference

a day, a day,
to
wake
and
maintain.

a day, a day,
cash
coffee
conversation,
culture contained.

a day, a day,
one
is
never
the same.

a day, a day
where’s
my
change?

March 23, 2015

we are the same

You, me; us we—forward or backward,
together we are the same.

Parts of a carnal body, whole—
built of dust, thoughts, and air;
no scar is without a measure,
no action still unmoved,
shell of human being outside,
ghost of us within.

We are compelling a kind,
eyes peer to see;
from Franklin and Nicollet to NE,
Middle America to Middle East.

Still, forward or backward, we are the same.

March 21, 2015

Out of Dodge, 52 South to La Crescent

There are pieces to account for
while getting out of Dodge,
on a Friday eve, away from the city—
on the mind of those,

sat in an aged black truck on edgy burnt-out energy;
a person can purchase a mass of pink-violet
spectacle taking over western skies,

glorious sunset in tired eyes,
painting cloaked-clouds,
heavy dark, invoking peering pupils.

That giant burning orb,
light-years away,
is sinking into a foreland field,

browned is a Minnesota plain’s silhouette to come,
spotted with tail-lights
and oncoming forgotten brights;

before cars snaked out of the city
on veined webs of pavement,
onto highway 35,

which roller-coastered up and down,
thru and around,

wheels traversed crude potholes
and bad drivers—ones inciting rage,
to 52 South, to less ego.

And in the cockpit:
a cracked window,
a rear-view gaze,
changing bootlegged CDs,
and easy conversation.

The journey goes:
follow the lines to-,
follow the lights to-,
follow the signs to-,

each less visible moment passing,
each shadowed monument dusted;
stop here, stop there, no stops at all…
Make time.
Make tracks.
Make it back.

under shrouded moon above,
each sparsely laden gas station,
each pre-ghost town affixed—

to Rochester, by Rushford,
past Winona and Houston,
fast 73mph, thru Nodine—

establishments wax a dimly lit yellow,
down a long hill stretch to 14 61,

along hulks of vibrant-by-day bluffs,
past looming Lock and Dam No 7,

along the sounding Mississippi,
waters show streetlamps caught in the flow, luminescent,

and we go into town,
La Crescent, past the Hub
to Apple Village Liquors,
then to home.

There,
a warm room,
my smiling family,
and hugs await.

Pieces of what’s become
getting out of Dodge.

***

A good aspect of the city
can be getting out of it.