Posts tagged ‘reality’

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.

February 11, 2017

#Resist : the Sierra Club to Planned Parenthood

from an Ikea brand couch
scrolling my social media feed,
i ponder how many trees it takes
to make a modern revolution’s
professionally made protest sign
that says “me” and evokes “you” to react;
here, i give you honest truth–
as i sip my latte, the $10 one from Starbucks,
it tastes okay, but could be better;
to presuppose a certain movement
or ideology is more imperatively just,
i do wager that for all–i know,
which one is better and more necessary
than the rest, for the rest, obviously.
here subtle meanings are left to expire
on my re-purposed dumpster rug,
which really ties the room together;
passed by at its open casket wake,
where later these signs may litter hard pavement,
a place where my American made boots
and skinny black jeans may not go,
only in mind…
and we talk and like and demonstrate.
we are so importantly important,
this is what democracy looks like.
…and really, who bought these signs?

February 11, 2017

skill

these poets have got skill
they ought to make gods
out of straw men
with fists up to disrupt
in groups large enough
not to miss
but for a singular idea;
for the entirety
individuality has left the building
like they say Elvis once did
and
they prefer and
persuade yours’ gone too, verily–
auf wiedersehen, jetzt;
tho irony poses a problem
when
you think about that purpose
without thinking about that principle,
a group think showing
others to not think
for themselves: so don’t; ironically,
for some everything
can be a problem, depending on the message,
similarly with the critic
at a convention of their beat–they just have to;
still there is nothing new under the sun.
but as arms of automated
recycling trucks
reaching out with care
at soon to be new old shit
these poets
could fall like building 7
16 years ago September, to grey dust
by one true statement,
fall like a beggar’s budget
at two buck chuck,
and then break
their wrists patting their own backs
as if they made
that poignant prose
so much their own,
accordingly their every breathe
is arrogance.
let’s call it “skill” anyway.

January 1, 2017

7102, wow,

the year 2017, wow, is going to be 365 new ones,
with bubbles, pink shrimp and bloody Rib-eye.
Less of a killer hangover for new dads,
more time to think on things that happen.
Watching church shows: Joel Osteen,
for his positive message: no god, no. Imagine.
probably atrocities, probably anomalies;
probably complaints—and still, who cares?
Sunday, January 1, 2017… no 6 anymore.
Don Lemon’s pierced ear, tequila shots
and a fake wall built on the Washington Ave bridge;
like the Titanic museum in Belfast, UK,
the building is shaped like an iceberg;
where contradictions lie in wait and wait.
A coffee cup of coffee, within it false creamer.
Ersatz-politics adumbrate plastic news, woo.
All for salubrious sorts and their goodly peers.
Have a great time, everyone, welcome to day one.

December 23, 2016

what to expect when you sit down to write a poem

When you sit down to write a poem
it mostly happens. I believe that anyone can do it.
Writing poems is easy, depending on the poems
you write and the audience you write to.
If you were a press and your goal was to make money
off of poems, then your audience would be donors.
I assume they are harder to write to than bloggers.
I guess an idea that blew my mind is
publishers would have competitions
and offer cash prizes and then after they rejected you
they would send out emails about
how they need your money. I never got that.
People asking for donations after they rejected your work,
as if the words you wrote lacked the luster
and the importance of the words of others.
I suppose certain grant writers get more money
for certain words, certain editors need salaries,
and certain ideas hit closer to home.
I mean, I am a father, a husband; I am white and male
(but none of that matters; but identity is chic now);
I have tried hard as any to get to where I am.
I would say I am a poet but by most accounts
and the emails I get, that means I am a failed poet.
I don’t make rent or pay bills off of my work,
it pays in smiles and a sort of pride
that only you and I would understand.
What I do is safe as a handrail on icy stairs.
What I do is very, very, very easy
because doing something you love shouldn’t be hard.
What I do isn’t exactly defined, thankfully;
in a scene you have to either be or not
or just keep going until someone notices you
and either says “shit” or “genius” or “you are that poet”
and that really depends on the time of year
and who you are close friends with,
and what kind of poem you read at the open mic, and how.
So, I have noticed, when you sit down and write a poem
it usually happens, and you can do it,
though I would say most are worried about perfection,
how other people feel about their ideas,
and would hide their art because
it might lack meaning, identity, or a soapbox purpose,
absolutely defined by others in a social vaccuum.
But we will never know. And that is why I wrote this poem
precisely for you. I find it a huge success.
Writing mostly happens, or I guess it doesn’t.
Easy as mom’s Facebook post or Trump’s tweets.
Easy as pressing keys and not marketing.

December 13, 2016

i guess i am afraid too…

i think of our fast time
when and where the fear
holds us tight, when
we tell everyone
how afraid we
are about everything
and anything, everywhere,
so vocally, so knowingly,
and how our ways only
will most likely change that fear.
then i think
about a class that
i took a few weeks back,
one of self-defense, surely,
when and where the
instructor told us all
to not be afraid
of the dark, or not
defend ourselves if we are
and we find ourselves in it.
i mean, it seems so easy,
but the basement can
be really scary, the dark alley
can be truly terrifying,
the misunderstood politician
can seem as the devil incarnate.
and then i remember
looking to outside St Paul,
out on the cold streets,
crusted in white hard snow,
alight with daybreak,
that cold that is out there
in the sun is more
dangerous to us–30 minutes and
you are dead, and that
the summer clothes hanging
in my gloomy basement are
only as scary as i make
them myself, they blow in the wind,
they touch me like shadows,
they do what i tell them
to do in my head. this is what i fear:
the irrational fear of others.
so, i guess i am afraid too…

December 12, 2016

spring break in canada

one time, jess and i drove to canada
in a small chevy truck. we stayed along
lake superior and its blowing winds. thought
cedar greens would snap. got to tofte at

about 8:35pm, couldn’t see the site.
a ranger called that morning told me they plowed it.
slept on hard rock ground, no foam mattress.
woke up found we were at the shoreline,

read a death in venice. made coffee,
warmed fingers, walked in snow. thought
of my dad and how it was 70 in the cities.
we drove north, had pizza at sven and ole’s;

i had a beer, got in the truck; then crossed
the border past an endless sea of pine, rocks,
and blue water mass. got stopped, wouldn’t
let us through. stayed at an airnb…

won loonies at some casino, tipped very well.
everyone asked us why we traveled north for spring break.
drank bulleit rye in a sauna and turned into a jerk.
got lost. got deals at target. watched

forensic files, ate pancakes, and we became
international travelers; drove to another country.
just like that, for a thought. and i don’t
know, thought i would recount that situation.

it was good. crossing borders, it was nice
seeing things outside of an america lens.

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.

December 1, 2016

fake news/ fake people

fake news
is
actually
news,
like
fake people
are
actually
people.
i mean
think
about it.
how many
fake
plants
do you
see in
your office
each
day, and say:
damn,
those aren’t
real
plants,
i won’t
see
what they
have
to say
about
things.