but aren't they all random?



A Pocketful of Poesy was a Poem-a-Day(-on-Average) Blog* up until the great derail of 2013. The impossibly-high standard of quality proved impractical to keep up, without a book deal. But don't take my word for it: click RANDOM and judge for yourself! And feel free to offer your critique.
*based on poem rate for calendar years 2009-2012. Also, kidding about the book deal.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

yes! I said

I want that,
and all of that,
and all of everything else we can have
and I want it all now, in the bag and gift-wrapped
and I'll keep the receipt, but

- you can't take it back

anyone else?

anyone else want to try?
anyone else want a crack
well bring it on right now
sound the round 1 bell
'cause I am
taking on all comers
giving it all
'til my blood runs like stone
and my face
breaks
into planes and pretty colors,
like
stained glass

but bulletproof, don't you know

I am a whirlwind of fisticuffs
a cataract of clobber
a punch, spiked with hard
hundred proof hooch

make your eyes swim dizzy
and your legs wobble loose
like you bit off a chew too many
of my ear, or maybe overconcussed
your butthead head from an ill-advised
head butt, but that cheap shot
will avail you naught

because I will keep standing
right here

I am taking on all comers

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

the last of what has to happen

I'm gearing up for the last of what has to happen
it isn't inevitable, no not at all,
but nothing can stop it
now

I've been through the worst of the stages already
from denial to anger to whatever else,
I ran hypothetical checks on myself
when it happens I'm ready
and how

but I've got no contingency plan for the rest
of my life
it's like ice,
cloudy hard-frozen slush
the future, a glacier,
creeps forward toward
me

I suppose I'll be crushed

Monday, September 28, 2009

sugar pills

my symptoms stick
until I twist
you open up
and give me what
my shakes and pains
and fever breaks
for you
I've waited
months
in days

I almost feel better
just shaking you out
into my hand,
clammy,
damp from need
but "almost feel better"
is not enough
as brain sweats
blood, as bit lips
bleed

I look for a glass
but can't wait to find
don't need any water
I swallow you dry
I swallow again
my throat scrapes slow
with you inside
and then
I know

I know
I know
as you head down,
it's on the way
relief is now
my nerves unfray
my eyes unswell
my veins relax
I'm almost well
and tears of sweet
relief outpoured

my faith in you
once more restored

Thursday, September 24, 2009

I love it when beats and images combine

I love it when beats and images combine
for the sake of mankind
to blow the hive-mind
into all of its
individuals
and constituents
raise the subliminal
out from the unconsciousness, get each of us
to achieve a state
of mind,
where awareness isn't just to sit
submissive and blind
to all, save the feed:
the pre-approved stimulus
pre-digested, pre-critiqued
peer-reviewed, and it's the buzz

kid-tested,
mother-government approved!
church group approved,
subculture clique and scout troop

so easy
let the think tank and the focus group
tell you who is you
when to sit, speak or poop
and why not to ask why
and where to fit to fit in
free validation self-esteem
with purchase of a membership pin
but careful where you stick it though
- POP! - there it goes,
there goes your validation, too
based on what,

you didn't know

so time for self correction,
criticism reflection
wake up from subjection
don't attend the convention
take up a collection
of your own thoughts and goals
to kick the whole collective
right out of your soul

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I didn't want

I didn't want to trip
and throw burning
hot soup - Chunky Chicken
Corn Chowder! all over
the computer,
the keyboard to drip into
and between the keys
the monitor to scorch
and stain, like maps of crazy
continents, I didn't want
to cover my whole left hand
with pinkly sizzled flesh
in a creamy corn sauce
how exquisitely delish!
I didn't want to lose my
footing, no I didn't want
to slip, didn't want to lose
my grip, no I didn't want
to trip
- so I didn't!

I was particularly careful, in fact.

I had a pretty vivid image of it happening, and

I took precautions against.

we have detailed plans

We have sharp, detailed plans
for things that won't work.
Tight, precise diagrams
all contingent upon
what we know can't occur.
But oh, boy! If it does,
we'll be ten steps ahead
before they can prove wrong

life gets a little

Life gets a little
sticky, like
riding a bike after
eating an apple. How
the handlebars cling
to your tacky fingers,
while your legs pump blood
and the sour taste lingers
tires whisper through leaves
as you toil uphill, well,
more like a shallow grade
you can make it, you will.

You'll make your pleas,
you'll state your plans,
you've got a thing or two to say
as soon as you get there
You're almost late, almost late
but you can make it with a minute to spare,
and skinned knees, and with scabs on your hands,
from where you wiped out last week - coming 'round
the final turn, eating gravel down the drive,
rolling up and through the door in one smooth motion,
a dive
and then cried.

- a spectacular entrance! As entrances go.
But as you near the final turn, this time
a little - bit - slow

Me Verse The Devil In A Boxing Match!

The devil appeared in a cloud of smoke
in mellifluous tones he spoke and spoke
as he rolled his forked tongue over plummy vowels
while assistants rubbed his shoulders with steaming towels
"so you think you can beat me?" he grinned with a frown
as he sat in his red satin boxing gown
with "SATAN'S GYM" embossed across its broad back
in elaborate letters of glossiest black
"I've been watching you, son,
you've got power and pride!
But to go against me, well,
it's plain suicide.
I take on all contenders,
and lick every one.
Let's just work out a deal
- that's how business is done!"
But I said with a scorn, and a huff, and a haught
in my tone: "Stuff your bargains!
My fists can't be bought!"
So that night in the ring,
the bell clanged "ROUND ONE!"
I came charging right at him;
straight jab set on "stun!"
then I peppered his torso
with hard body-shots
and when he dropped his guard,
that's when I punched his clock!
He crashed to the canvas,
his eyes all unmoored
the ref counted "ten"
and I shouted for more!
The ref raised my left arm,
the crowd stormed the aisles,
Satan slunk off unmissed
as the reporters went wild
then with championship belt
and with victory strut
I headed backstage
to give Satan his cut.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

leverage

my head doesn't matter
to the solution to this
it must be I'm Irish
yeah kiss me, I wish
there soon will be sins
staining corner and edge
of these immortal souls
take aim with your wedge
twist in with your screw
shift me with your lever
you press your advantage
and then throw me under
your hard wheel and axle
pull me with your pulley
down inclined plane push me
use force like a bully
you make it so easy
the way you wield meaning
the truth is dismantled
by simple machining

the lesson

I drew on hard experience once, to write
a poem: it went like this: "a man flew kites
professionally, for fame and gain, in tournaments
from Gascony to far Japan, from Africa to Timbuktu
wherever kiting contests ranged,
and kites were flown for gain, he flew
but somewhere in the back of it, he said
'I've lost the plot, somewhere. I've held too tight
to too-taut twine, my soul's kite's tether
snapped mid-air, it blew off on
a gale-force wind - I swear
I haven't seen it since!
I've lost the reason why
I flew!' he cried aloud, chagrined, and winced.
'I have to get back to the fun
of it,' he said, with gleaming eyes,
and thus refreshed - he scored 1st place!
The Million-Dollar Grand Kite Prize!"

rose-colored eyes

starry glasses on
over rose-colored eyes
just a tinge of bloodshot
maybe too little sleep,
but the view that I see
is worth staying up for
is too good to be false
is too true not to keep

in your just-woken eyes
with your just-woken smile, my
rose-colored eyes see why
I have traveled for miles

as we conscious, dissolve
one long longing embrace
taken straight from my dreams,
I can finally awake

blow it out

today's the day
that's set aside
to mark another
year of you

on days like now
you take your cake
and blow it out
and eat it too

Monday, September 21, 2009

time on earth

all we have is time
on earth
the best things cost us,
all we're worth
and all we've got to pay
is time
but all I pay
can't make it mine

I was over

I was over
joyed with
disappoint
ment when
I saw you
looking so
happy to
get
her

for normalcy

my heart breaks for normalcy
for what I never knew I had
to get back where it used to be
and have contentment: only that

I'll never pray for happiness,
for joy surpassing every dream
if I could only bite my lip,
and fight my way back in-between

I've learned the cost of wanting more
or rather, of believing in
now so far down from discontent,
I can't see my way up again

the daily lack of just enough
is pounding me, it's killing me
just what I'd need, to just get by
is all I want

just normalcy

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Nothingness sacred

the opposite of God
is the Nothingness
way out farther than
the universe, it sits and sits
Where light
has never reached,
where time has never
ticked, because there's
nothing to forever
when there's nothing
there to measure
out where space has never spread
because there's no point
to plot, there's no single point of
reference there, to diagram
or chart

and the Nothingness is infinite
in its own certain sense
it knows infinitely nothing
to an infinite extent
there isn't any boundary out there
no barrier, no wall, just an infinite
of nothing, stretched away from
it all

but at some point

there's going to be a light out there

the dimmest glow
at first, but it will grow
as the universe - us - hurtles
infinitely slow
for the first time in forever, there
will be one point of reference
for the Nothingness to ponder
in its infinite slow shock
it will take one more forever
for the universe to get there
but to Nothingness, that's just
the second tick
of the clock

Friday, September 18, 2009

the second sting

Well it isn't the first
'cause that just swells you up
with signals that send to your cells
a shock - saying "that was the drill -
the next time come through, I want
suicide strike - every last one of you!"

For the sake of precision,
for apple pie, ma,
for discipline, honor,
the whole coup de grace
every cell falls in line
with a grim pageantry
standing poised for the order

and here comes the bee

try to be two

we'll try to be one
but no two can be one
we'll try to be one
in the same time and place
we will occupy one face,
with a simultaneous smile
and a tear in just one eye
that will never fall
and never dry

we tried to be one
as experiment, for fun, like
an optical illusion poster
suddenly it clicked, but
we couldn't unclick it back
or see it any other way, it
was your gaze forward, my
gaze back, but which was which
we couldn't say

we tried to be two
but no one can be two
we tried to be two,
like what's healthy,
like they say, you
putting your self first, me
putting mine,
into you, into me, losing
everything
except
our way

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

and each day since, the facts so far have outstripped myth

let's take a walk
out on the theoretical grounds
I will point out empirical facts,
that lie casually, scattered around
as if you couldn't see them for yourself

so you,
playing along, see for yourself
just how many you can refute, some with
tidy truism, others with that paradoxical
knack you have for neat leaps of fate and bolts
of sudden epiphany. And you, with a flourish,
will open pandora's box
- which you had been saving -
to find it empty

Of course it is.
They opened that thing
in ancient times,
and all that was within
has ever since
been mine.

we too can break bread

Your plate is loaded
edge to edge
with surplus sticking over, out
You hold your plate, with thumb across the top, palm flat
and firm, with glass in other hand, rim-full, and balance
in your bearing. Smiling as everything is set down
with aplomb,
and smiling, you arrange yourself before me,
napkin, silver, smooth your skirt, straighten up posture
and pause with hands folded daintily
for grace.

Fine.

I'll call your fucking bluff.
You say grace. But you do
an astonishing job! - for an atheist,
and then we both dig in, me with wary
gusto, waiting for the dig that never comes.
You, with great enjoyment and seeming
sincere warmth and good humor, you, you
godless heathen hypocrite! Yeah, polish it off, and lick
it clean - but your soul knows where your mind has been.

Fine.

So I rise and clear the plates away, with half a mind
to serve desert and coffee, and the other half
to just sit back down, and keep just kind of looking
at you across the table, with a look, until you laugh
and say,

"What?!"

But I don't sit back down. "What" was the one question
I cannot answer. Instead I step sideways, into the kitchen
flip the switch to coffee, pull the cooling rose jam tart with
light maple drizzle and marzipan filling from the sill where it
lay, and make dramatic passes in the air with my pie knife
as I set it down, to an "ooh!" but no ah. "Ah," I say, "let me just
get the coffee,"

it's done.

permanent daylight

as permanent daylight breaks over me
as the last night I'll ever know
draws sighing to a close
and you draw me up higher
than horizons can go
the horizon curves in
and becomes a globe -
we swing west fast in orbit
cuddle cradle in close
fleeing sunrise at first
but the sun gains slow
and we slowly lose sky
to its closing-in glow
in its closing-in glare
days weeks months fly
now it's overhead, noon
it's a little past high
now, it's afternoon now
it's been years since the dawn
flying faster, somehow
it creeps increments on
we fall tiny slips behind
we push forward, force will
force effort, force mind
but the sun is falling still
towards the globe's growing edge
straightening horizon curve
as the sun slips past the line
the last day I'll ever know
falls sighing to the earth
and my permanent daylight breaks
down

for the first time in long decades
I feel gravity restored
at some point you must have slipped
from me, and flown without a word
I squint blinking in the rushing wind
and then I turn my back
upon the earth and search the pale
as the stars poke through the growing black
The growing earth is breathing, hot
upon me as it comes

and the night will fall
with me inside
so warm, still
from the sun

Monday, September 14, 2009

voices of angels

voices of angels
whisper, whisper,
encouragement into
the corners of rooms
that I enter into,
with great trepidation
fearing to tread
as I listen as hard
as I can to catch syllables
suspirant consonants,
vowels inaudible
strain to be heard
I know they are angels
I know it's encouragement
fearful, I strain -
I cannot catch
a word

Friday, September 11, 2009

Leave Us Not

Leave us not be insensible
to the charges laid against us
That our language is archaic
and our attitude, pretentious
That we say too little, far too well
with too much pride in doing so
There's truth to these, and other slights
but that's just how we do it, yo

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Ezekiel 25:18

beauty is truth
and truth,
is a motherfucker
that is all you know in life
and all you need to know,
motherfucker

my guardian angel's shoes

my guardian angel lent me shoes
and now they're wearing out
it didn't occur to me that could happen
I've been wearing them every day
and I never even walked any place
special

I should have been careful, I guess
conserved and husbanded them
saved them up for when I had
someplace special to walk to,
in angel's shoes

I never would have worn them at all

serenity prayer

I can't be good
for others anymore
It's getting so
I don't remember when
I knew when I was right
It's getting so I
can't see why I thought
I was someone to like
It's getting so I can't
believe I'll ever feel
or be that way again
Times like these
come every day, and
Lord,
I need to pray
for something
Please, stretch out
that Michelangelic hand -
I know I'm no Adam, I'm
no San Francisco either
I know I don't need to be
original,
here.
I just need what everyone wants:
I want to keep honest
no matter how many lies
I fall for
like a chump
I want it not to phase me in the slightest
I want my devotion
to crush my doubt
every damn time
I don't want to care
whether I'm being lied to or not
I want to make a choice: to trust,
then act accordingly
- like a fucking idiot!
as necessary.

I just want
to love, and to be able
to act, always,
as if it's true.
I don't ask for miracles,
for it to really be true.
I just ask help. Please help
Release, let go
all my best guesses,
all my favorite
worst suspicions, and
everything I always feel so
maddeningly, cynically,
sickeningly sure of
Let me surrender all that,
and everything else,
as much as I can
to love
Let me do everything right
and take whatever consequences.
Whether she does or not,
I want to be the one she can

trust

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Fingers Crossed

fingers crossed
and behind backs
the talks are straight
the deals are inked
invisibly, between
the cracks, between
the lines, we read
our minds and find them
black, inscrutable
abstruse, opaque
we look concerned
with leaps we take
steps at a bound
not knowing whether up
or down, the staircase
slopes - like all our hopes
trapped like a mouse
in some mad M.C. Escher
house, perspective twists
as down it slides - or up
it climbs?

and who decides?

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

you can't assume

the keys that work for you won't open
locks I have to pick
the knobs you turn to open doors
- for me, it takes a kick
the windows that you slide so smooth
my crowbar goes right through

you can't assume your methods work
just 'cause they work for you

hollow on hollow

I bang my head
upon the wall
you put up so I could

and you on your side
me on mine
do separate worlds
of good

Saith the Wanderer

One must either perfect or destroy one's home
before one takes off wandering. There must be
something to come back to that will last, or
no reason to come back. For when one truly sets out,
who knows when one will truly return? Only the wanderer
can ever come home again.

wow

what a load of HORSE SHIT that is

Saturday, September 05, 2009

I've been using my love for you

I've been using my love for you as furniture
I've been sitting on it, lying down on it
eating off of it. Not directly, of course!
The food itself is on plates and in bowls
that rest upon my love for you. I'm not a
savage.

I've been using my love for you as plates and
bowls, and cutlery, finest silver - I polish
my love for you, I lay it out on the sideboard
and then I buff each piece until it gleams.

I've been using my love for you in mundane ways
just to get through life, every single day
I don't think I can even do without it now.
It's become such a part of my life,

somehow I use my love for you as a crutch, not just
in the sense of an alcoholic's liquid lunch, but also
in the sense of an actual crutch. I hurt
my foot pretty bad, tripping over my love

I leave my love for you lying out all around
it takes so many forms I never know where it's found
it has multiplied and shifted shapes, repurposed intent
I doubt I'll ever get my arms around its extent

blue and gold

I never much wish to be back in the past
but sometimes I'm drawn there without being asked
and I wake in a dream of locker-lined halls
and am shoved against one by a girl named Paul
I don't know why she's named Paul,
I don't know who she is,
but I'm not in her class
that's for sure, that's fo shizz
but such Snoopy Dogg Speak
is anachronist slang
I'd best muzzle that noise
if I don't want to hang
every time back in time
I awake in this dream
I spend miserable days
trying to pass without seem
if they get on the scent
if I let slip a clue
that I'm here from the future
I don't know what they'd do

so I bide my low profile
and try to blend in
I never was much good at that
even then

and I hum the school song
and I pass flying tests
and I wear blue and gold
and I wake up,
undressed

Friday, September 04, 2009

no second chances

to fuck it up - you'd have to try so hard
but I'll walk away any time you want
and I'll take you back every time you ask
you know your second chance will never come

you get as many as you want
and none of them are going to count
you're only ever going to be
on your first chance with me
you get as many as you want
but you'll never even use up one
you're only ever going to be
on your first chance with me

I knew it from five minutes before we met
and when we kissed it was the proof to a bet
one you only win once
and then you know: you're set

you get as many as you want
and none of them are going to count
you're only ever going to be
on your first chance with me
you get as many as you want
but you'll never even use up one
you're only ever going to be
on your first chance with me

and if you leave me, if it's years
if you came back I would still be yours
I mean I'd drop the one I'm with
to take you back - now, that's just too sick
that can't be me - I can't do that
so if you leave me, I'll just hold back
and take you back after however long
you know your second chance will never come

you get as many as you want
and none of them are going to count
you're only ever going to be
on your first chance with me
you get as many as you want
but you'll never even use up one
you're only ever going to be
on your first chance with me

you get as many as you want
as many as you want
but you'll never use up one
you'll never even use up one

you are only ever going to be
you are only ever going to be
you're only ever going to be
on your first chance with me

Thursday, September 03, 2009

"I am an awful person"

"I am an awful person"
she confides to the cold
in an awful voice
that barely registers
as sound, but gives vent
to sudden and amazing clouds
of steam

I am so mean,
I mean it all
my words are indestructible
I say things
no one can take back
the words burnt black
by their meanings

but
each of us is awful
we can't all be awful
all the time
can we?

YOUR SWEET ASS

your ass is well-rounded
and handsomely formed
and something to see
as we promenade out

your ass does you credit
your ass reflects well on you
casts quite a spell as you
curtsy and pout

no matter what, come what may
you know your ass will be
right there behind you
supporting you gracefully

as long
as you're my lady
as long as you're my queen
you know that I am always going to be
YOUR ASS

as long
as you're my baby
as long as you let me
I know I always want to be YOUR
SWEET ASS

in denim or suede or
in whatever fashion
you know that your ass will be
flattering you

your ass doesn't lie
maybe cheeky - but true
the flattery's just
what you know you are due

no matter what, come what may
you know your ass will be
backing you to the hilt
trying assiduously

as long
as you're my lady
as long as you're my queen
you know that I am always going to be
YOUR ASS

as long
as you're my baby
as long as you let me
I know I always want to be YOUR
SWEET ASS

pretty fucking sure

I'm as sure of you as I am of myself
even more, in fact

I'm as sure of what I want, as I am of
what you are.

I'm as sure as a man can be that you blow
my needs away

That's pretty fucking sure. The only thing
I'm not sure of is

does all of that add up,
to make a poem?

I'm not sure it does.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

"call the New Detectives"

I'm beginning to think our love has died
the whole house is beginning to smell
it's like our love's been wrapped up in a shower curtain
and shoved under the house with the feet sticking out
that's not a good enough job, girl!
we gotta bury our love
gotta cut it up cut it up in the tub
make it easier to carry to the car
it's not a pleasant chore, girl
I guess I have to do it myself
you always disappear when the going gets hard
I haven't seen you I don't know where you are
I'm beginning to suspect our love has died
buried way out in the woods, a mile from each road
on nobody's property, nobody's side,
watched over by crows. I could lead them
right straight to it, it's a spot I know
it's where you brought me on that creepy picnic one time -
now I'm led back there each night by a vengeful ghost,
in my dreams, I mean - I know that I would never return
to that scene, like a crime, the guilt, it burns - I sit here
shaking this feeling I'm responsible
for the death of our love, as the blame
sinks in,

'til with click (key) snap (latch) the door creaks in
and you walk right back in, with wicked grin

then your face falls, and
you wrinkle your nose, "ugh!

What is that smell?"

the stars will have work

the stars will have work to do
in the sky tonight
for the sake of you
they had best shine hard
with sparkled spell
and cast a charm
of wistful bewitchment
that you will fall under
and into my arms

and I will catch you well
and keep you tight
and make you regret
every day and night
that you didn't know yet
that you were mine

and to thank those stars
I will spend tomorrow evening
sitting on West Cliff
as twilight comes on,
and as each star appears,
I will wish on each
with great gratitude and attention,
singling each out for mention
until the night is at its darkest
(which is just before dawn)
and I have wished on each and every one

a wish for nothing more
than what has been granted

skyride

one day we'll come back down to earth
for now I'm stuck high in the air
with you beside me, snug inside
a metal car suspended by
a wire far above a gay
amusement park
parade that wends its way
below
through darkening rows
your face is lit with such a glow

below us, covering up
with night
the people turn to laughing shades
backlit by harsh electric bulbs
and winding neon tentacles
but up here in our summer sky
we both glow bright with sunset grins
the world below fades into night
we two, suspended high
are light

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

dreams for dinner

we're having dreams
for dinner again
with fresh mashed hope
and promise squash
it tastes like nothing
you've ever had

the dishes, at least
will be easy to wash

gone round the world

we've gone round the world
again,
and you'll find your way back
to me
but it's going to be far
too late
by the time you get here
you'll see

I don't mean I'll be wasted
away
I don't mean I'll be lying
here dead
I'm just gone
round the world one way
and you've gone round the other
instead

we'll be bound to meet up
in the middle once more
with trajectory perfect
and timing assured
'cause we synchronized eyes
before we started out
and we synchronized pulses
and counted aloud
down from ten
back to zero
and then

we were gone

round the world
counterclockwise
and clockwise,
alone