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.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

just the best ass

There's a girl at work
and she has
just the best ass.

I'm not interested in any
other part of her

not her pretty face

or her lovely, but rather
let's-be-frank undersized,
rack

or her but-let-us-not-speak
-of-such-delicate-matters,
either.

I'm not interested in that!

see,

I'm a professional,

and I'm not going to go chasing
after work-based tail!

Besides: as a serious feminist,

if I were going to try
to take a crack,
to "hit that",
then I would never of course

go about it by
engaging in such moves
based on some shallow basis. I could never

enter into
something

real,

not by depersonalizing a woman!
down to simply one
or several
of her gross physical attributes

Hell, no.

Not this guy!

I find the prospect alone
repugnant, almost
gross

albeit when I say: "gross
physical attributes" -
none of hers are, I assure you
remotely gross, but I digress. Point is: in

a relationship situation, or even
contemplating such a thing! even
hypothetically! you can't just
focus in
on that one thing

that one big thing

that one main thing
that thing
that caught your eye

in the first place

wow,

look at that

and held it,
held your eye
prisoner, captive,
and with it - your mind.

No. You can't do that.

No,

you can't.

I'm telling you. You can't. That's
just not how you go about it.

You can't.

What you have to do is:
to love a woman,

You have to
appreciate her -
her entire, her
whole womanness
in its complete
and rounded
totality.

Of course!

Doesn't that go without saying? Sure

And I'll be honest -
all of that
totality, well
it might distract
just a bit
from that ass
on her.

Which, frankly!

it is just
the best ass. I'd almost
rather just leave all these other aspects
aside, for the moment

a separate issue

really

nine-tenths

you have entered in
to me
assumed
possession,
ownership
- my heart,
in no fit state
to take in company

feels nonetheless
at peace with it

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Things such as cannot properly be said

My heart lives in a house on fire;
these feelings for you
that I have -
well they don't mean much;
not without that sigh of sudden tenderness
that awakens in your breast like a mighty shout,
a sweet whisper of the strange lands
that your heart hearkens unto
in the darkling deeps of love's sweet night of the soul -
when the toes of one's unreadiness settle
heavily
into the thickly downed slippers
of love's repose.

as we waltz achingly into the future,
dripping endless entreaties of love,
we sweet happiness to each other
over tender protestations of despair.
This, too, our dearly-made destiny:
falling haplessly by as the sleeping years
smite us hither with deep longing,
under the baleful glances of the moon.
you are beautiful
beyond flowers
and jewelry,
and sunsets,
and fine things,
beyond the soft glow of fires
and the sweet earth from which we grow
and I love you for it.
Your sweet head is in my heart
bumping and thumping around
but it can't get out.

our vows

so it's agreed, then:
we'll pull one straw from the hand
roll a pair of crack dice
flip a coin in midair,
don't even watch
where it lands, stand precise
upon the crack
between the sidewalk and road

leave every little thing to chance,
and see -

wherever it goes

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

goddess of dark alleys

she stains all the glass
that lies in shards
at her feet as she'll pass
through the darkest of nights
down the darkest of halls
in between every tall
and magnificent spire,
her shadow falls higher

still want you all

I still want you
all to myself, somehow,
despite now
I have practically none
of you left
to call mine
- oh, I'll call
I can call all I want!
I can call, and
we'll talk, and
agree that it's
fine

Saturday, September 25, 2010

first morning beer

I haven't had beer in the morning since I left
you - or rather, you threw me out
that last half-bottle that got left
on the nightstand
sour and warm
to wash down our pills in the morning, and
revive what was left
of the taste in our mouths

and today I see
that last half-bottle that got left
last night, that I forgot to drink, to finish
sitting there for me. to drink

to finish

so,
thinking of you, warm
and sour,
I raise the bottle and
pour it out

Friday, September 24, 2010

fate vs. what actually happened

our memories have minds of their own,
I think. And they go where they wish
without asking permission
and lists of those things
you would better forget
walk right in, popping corks
clinking glasses and laughing,
and listening - to words
that can't now be unsaid, and
speaking back words
that can't now be unheard
and decisions, decisions -
so hard to make once!
must be relived again,
but yet never undone.

Lived again, and again
- what this memory wants
is a chance to live now
and be what should have been!
but the best it can do
is torment us again
every single thing right
but the end

of the scene

some people should not be given super-powers

so that's when I used my super-powers
to make everything alright!
and then I warned people
"do not fuck with strangers"
"because who are they?" "and what are they capable of?"

"you don't know!"

that's a good lesson,
but people were like,
"Thanks, Mom!"
kind of insultingly
so I killed
and resurrected them
with my super-powers

which I guess

showed them!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

at least the lemmings

Hm. Speaking
of work,
of lemmings,
I bet they could set up
rows of a hundred hamster wheels
in front of a cliff!

with lemmings - one
in each wheel, like a cubicle, a
workstation - it would be

perfect. A piece - a performance art
nature installation, these lemmings,
running endlessly
towards that sweet cliff of
desire, of consummation. It
would be like:

  • a commentary on modern society,
  • how the ceaseless spinning wheels
  • we allow ourselves to be harnessed
  • into are in the long run, just a slower variation
  • on the mass leap of
suicide

that certain furrier lower organisms take
at a run, leaping
by instinct.

Meanwhile we sit scratching our heads "why?" - while we sit
running in place, and admiring our view
of the precipice
over which one day we too shall plunge.

But not yet: work,
work to be done.

The wheels
must wheel.

There. Perfect.

foot down

you put foot down hard
on the surface of a lake
we'll be held up by faith
for as long as it takes

Sunday, September 19, 2010

she said 'later'

she said 'later' because
it's closer to never
I took it because
it's the best I could get
from her
push her for something
you'll get nothing back
I've known her, well
long enough
to know that

my hair looks great

my hair looks great
in mirrors, drunk
or in your eyes,
or so you slur
- but later on
the photographs
show evidence
of matted fur

Friday, September 17, 2010

you and your line

there wasn't much I could say to that
you and your line going off along
your trajectory left, and away,
and up
and out
course-corrections fed in
as you go
if you're wrong,
you'll be wrong
and I'll maybe find out
when our paths cross up
on the other side
when we're each too late
to do much, but decide
we can see we weren't wrong
only off

just a touch

check

checking in again
oh, religiously
like I tend to do
on what interests me
and for God's sake, what
do I find from you?

you're still stuck on this?
in this needle groove -
with your perfect skip,
jumping back one notch
- you stay centered along,
carving into pain -
though the wheel turns
smooth,
and it never stops,
you will never progress
past the first refrain

and the words you repeat
at the top of your voice
- you don't know what they mean,
though you sing with force
and they could have been
great, and true, my friend
it's a shame for this song
you won't let it
end

we need to frown

we need to frown upon
such things
and stop our
laughter in our
throats
before we get
so carried off
to all
the places that it goes

caught

I caught a look
that wasn't meant
for me, but for
the guy behind
me in the hall, I didn't
even know he's there!
your smile is
armistice
armor
armament,
amour

- you're at
the other end,
a hall that runs considerably
and I can't see your eye contact
is just that slight bit "off"
from me -

so I light up,
and wonder what on earth
has passed between us? passed
without my notice, passed
without my taking it
it seems
quite serious
and great!
and dangerous, perhaps
and guarded
hurt once, maybe

so much depends
on distances
and little differences
and you

see me light up
you have to laugh
there's no mistaking

my mistake

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Where There's Smoke, There's Jackie

she's got a point to make
red, glows, and fades
to gray
while weaving 'round
then reexplodes into white red
strong pull, push out
a ream of smoke
encircles, clouds
then clears

the air
is breathing her
she's conquered fire,
and our hearts
we're all enthralled a bit,
we breathe

in her:
black arts
and filthy habits
burn to clean
a catch, a
cough

my throat,
tight - burns
my eyes fill up

are you okay?

oh yes
I love
I've learned
to love

you
burn
me

up

Your house is boards, held together by swords

Your house is boards, held together by swords
light gleams off blades,
and shines through cracks
you stand ready to defend yourself with your life
at the sign of a threat, you draw forth cold steel
and your walls collapse

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

pinch

were you feeling a pinch
of uncomfortable, with
the feeling of this

with decisions you made
that you live with each day
for reasons explained
to yourself through and through
that are ringing less true?
are you feeling betrayed

by this out-of-control,
by yourself, most of all
by the path that you chose
to traipse gaily straight off
into bramble and rose
to go gambol in weeds
by the side of the road
- yes, a gamble indeed
to go rambling, now! from
a path straight and true
that you picked for your self
your best self

to see through.

In a pinch, all the reasons
still hold water, now
still hold, watertight -
still hold water: clear

but there's something far stronger
than water, held here
and the slow, deepest drink
leaves you feeling no fear

but a pinch - maybe? feeling
uncomfortable where
those decisions hem in
around feelings that can't
be quite comfortably
fit

- yet still squeeze to expand?
and did you feel a pinch,
and from that did you know
you're not dreaming?
and so -

did you want to pinch me?
one stray hand,

a hard squeeze

and let go

Monday, September 13, 2010

croon

I heard about it from a friend
who informed me today
I like the way you move
and that's when I fell in love
I got a letter from my heart,
I've been waiting to open it
until the moment comes
and that's when I fell in love
I looked across a crowded room
and my eyes locked on the empty space
where you didn't show up, I guess
and that's when I fell in love
it's like it was meant to be! like
every coincidence in town got together
- a conspiracy of coincidences, yes
and that's when I fell in love
with a thing, yes a sweet sweet thing
that's when I fell in love
with a sweet, sweet, thing, thing, thing
called
yooooooooooooooooooooooouuuuuuuuu!

grace before

your kitchen
cooked
aromas waft
your art upon your walls
a feast
you lay before me
everything
you softly sing
my neck
a kiss,

and we dig in

Sunday, September 12, 2010

a dozen fights

I rehearsed a dozen fights
just in case, before you showed up
and I'd like to say - that readiness
paid off, I think: we didn't fight
at all!

Not once. Not one
stupid fight, about anything

for once.

preparedness. I tell you,

preparedness

pays off.

Because

I was totally ready

Capital.

Come the revolution, I'll be up against the wall.
Standing straight with heel-click posture, tall and straight
and tall. Search the trembling firing squad,
with blithely scathing eyes,
they all know me
and what I've done,
and some of them have cried.
the commandant steps up,
all hard
with cigarettes
and blindfold,
scarred
across his nose
(and I know why)
and with a nod
I do decline the blindfold
but
with minute sneer,
I indicate the cigarettes,
with look afar -
"Send these away, old friend,"
I say
"and get me a cigar."

Friday, September 10, 2010

which in love

You told me once, that all things
which in love were made, in love
would keep - in love, all things kept
clean, or cleansed - forgiven,
unconditioned,
knots unbound,
blood run backwards into wounds, unstabbed
and sealed over with a kiss. Hearts uncrushed,
sprung back into the shape they had been, unbruised,
red threads of muscle snapped, clasped, rejoined
with no join to show for it. No
scar,

which in love do you mean?

to earth, a star

She fell to earth
her surface white
then red, then
black
and pitted rock

she cooled, and
cooled
her crater smoked
and cooled as well
I stretched my hand
out with a shock

and held it flat
and slid it down
her surface smooth where
molten streaks
wiped detail clean
and rough, where
burned
and pitted spikes
and chips
shot free

where shards snapped, fractured, out
and flew
the skin burnt black
torn by the air
her ribs like spokes

broke
through

the wind
stripped smoke
and flame, a vapor
tail swept back
she tossed her mane
it glowed,
trailed curled behind
in superheat,
her wake, inflamed
with friction's hands
expanding, spreads
to cleave and streak and scar
the sky
just like
her perfect form
has been so pitted, streaked
and scarred
oh lord, I still
see her

before she fell

so hard,

so hard

now legs, fused tight
her arms, held hugged
to torso bled and merged
and warped
from flight
too fast
too far

and down

I shake my head
with one hand spread out
flat above her heart, I tap
with tiny metal hammer, then

I lift my hand
and bow my head

to press my ear
against

listen

Thursday, September 09, 2010

no offense to Beth

I'm crossing my fingers
holding my breath
tapping my toes with impatience, Beth

Beth, you don't know me
and I don't know anyone named you

but I've got poems to finish.
and I needed a name.
So I took yours. It fit well enough,
so no,
I'm not ashamed

but the poem itself, I admit
is a little bit

on the lame side, Beth.

What can I say. Maybe it's

that lackluster name of yours.

I have to admit

most of the time
I start a sentence with
"I have to admit"
it's not true.

I didn't have to

That Thing

That thing comes slithering
ithering
in
wet hair, bedraggled,
clammy skin
one eye puffed shut,
one bloodshot eye -
it won't say where it was
or why
instead it winks
and tries to smile
with teeth unspeakable
and vile
and while you rack your mind
for what its weakness is,
it eyes your butt

you toss wood stakes
and garlic cloves,
silver bullets,
dirty clothes
make frantic finger crucifix
but nothing works
and nothing fits
this shambling vampire revenant,
this low-rent lycanthropic pimp
whose body hosts unwholesome ghosts
this slumlord of his own unholy
demon-tenanted tenement
advances on

with one-eyed leer
pretending not to note
or hear
your whispered, ragged,
gasping plea

so: knee? Meet balls
and balls: meet knee.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

I really love that color pink

your towel leads such a blessed life,
unknowing, as it wraps and slips
between the knowingest of nooks
in, down around and up, it dips
to rub from wet
to clean and dry, and buff to red
from paler hues - your towel and I
are of one mind
on just one thing:
the whole of you
your front, down all the way
to back behind, and all the bends
and curves, we just
want every inch of you
to rough and softly work your works
until you glow to rose, suffused
- then waking naked, on the air
so cool - your skin sends shivered thrills
until you wrap us tight 'round you,
and barely held, but tight -
you move to lie with us
upon your bed,
upon your towel or
was it me?
or was it all
just
in my
head

...this was widely viewed

...this was widely viewed
as a vindication of your
bullshit move, but I wasn't
placated, and neither were
you - you still can't forgive
yourself. With rue, you look into the mirror
and you hate it, well that's just
great, or at least it's just, I mean
maybe there's a time
when you'll finally do
what you must

YOU WIN

You win half
a pack of cigarettes,
half a bottle of white or red,
half a wheel of cheese and half
a loaf of bread.
Plus
half
what's
left.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

safe from me

Safe from me
Safe from me
I wish you were
I wish I was
because you will
waste precious years
of all your life
you can't get back
I won't give up
although I know I
should

I really should

I still
will waste your years
upon myself
not giving up
those miracles
that never come
I wish you could
be safe from me

because I know
I never could
I never could
I never will
I never will

and so I will
and so you won't
be safe from me
but maybe if
you throw it all
away

I'll catch

Friday, September 03, 2010

the week that monday never came, is coming around again, again

Alas, alack, awash in black
I mourn the demise of another week,
and shake my fist in anger at
the approaching and much-loathed
Monday Observed - "Labor Day"! Pah!
a day without work? That's some
way to celebrate the cause!
and then I must fit 5 days into 4
to a resounding ovation of small
applause

Thursday, September 02, 2010

a breathing spell

I'm passing through a breathing spell
brought on by you, and what you said
just now
just now,
that reached down through
my open mouth, and down
into my (not
my soul, but something
shivered, nerved and
shocked with sparks - my
spine?)
mind,
I don't know what to do
about this chance
I'll breathe
I'll be -
I'm fine!

I'll breathe

I'll breathe

I'll be

I'm

fine

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

round 2

gloves off

horseshoes in
gloves back on again

ding! ding,

shanty

sing a song of seven pence
a pocketful of ashes

four and twenty lashes
and a bottle of what's worst

to burn your throat, to keep
you here, to keep you going

on and through, with chafe of chain
and bend of back

through waves of black

your blade cuts through

to every move a motive

I like hotels with soft,
doughy danish in the lobby
paper cups for hot coffee,
hot water and assorted tea bags
all free! We make
fun of the orange juice,
and you choose
the most fucked-up
out of all the bagels.
I eye that thing
askance, as if to ask

- is it pity that moves you?

and in the mirror,
my eye

catches

my throat.

drill bit

She stood in boots
all attention, at ease
and she said "I'm your man,
sir!" - bright,
eager to
please,
well

I wasn't impressed.
With a stern dressing-down,
and a good talking-to
I reduced her to

frown

it went on for hours

it went on for hours
no one knew how, but wow, THAT
was one long haiku

So. Peter Gabriel.

So. Peter Gabriel.
My opinion of that guy,
he sings pretty high sometimes
that gulping shriek falsetto
never fails. Love it, and
he's like
with his weird, stacatto
syncopated vocalizations
he's like, what
the Tourette's of Soul
to me, anyway. His R
and his B are each
equally shot through
with this
World Music from Mars
or is it venus
that he does

that he does so well.

that he does so well,
it's hard to say how.

but I tell you,

though:

Peter Gabriel.

Peter Gabriel.

That's my man.

advice on your poem

I apologize. I never

give advice.

I usually don't give advice
or presume to. But I am moved,
and I must.

You must take what you have, here,
and use it as a beginning: to destroy
the universe, and travel in straight line.
Arc infinitely through what is left,
'til you reach the end,
dragging at lightspeed
the detritus of all that
blurred mass half-shattered into energy, all that
battered energy half-congealed into mass, and then
exert your pull: an entropic field, bending all
back together.

Inhale the last gasp of the big bang, change
and charge it with your lungs, expel it renewed
in a shout of light and time, the clang
of a brass gong the shape and size
of the cosmic microwave radiation background,
and what will be written upon it.

Your poem.

set sail

That kiss never happened. I saw it, lying there, tied up and waiting by the quay I felt it, my lips felt it through my eyes looking at your lips, your face stirred by a sweet breath exhaled - air - from grass, trees, pushed from behind by wind from the sea, and my lips set. Like wet concrete.

and somewhere, there was a ball game.

Your lips set like sails, spread wide in a smile that caught every ounce of breeze and turned it into speed - and away it went, a moment spent (mis-spent?) wisely, in some ways. I woke in your wake, awash in the waves from a moment gone by

that refused to take

please to meet

They say "speak of the devil,
the devil appears"
that's only the devil you know,
my dears
the devil you don't know
plays it cool.

You wouldn't know him if he kissed
you fool

rebuke thee

I cut like a sky through thick cloud, burn
like a brick wall through a life made of ash, of machismo
I've to spare, and I'll spare you plenty. The
figure I cut:
garish, rakish, mannish, - well,
it's all angles and angels and halos
cocked sideways, to hear me talk - wings
folded pretty insolently, harps plucked
sharp and painful, like a duck, to see it
my way - and if you care to check
you'll see I've got two little me's
on the right shoulder, and nobody
over the left. It's
how I've always known.

There's a certain amount of truth to everything,
if you know how to see it, you'll see exactly
what I mean. I mean
what I say

no

wait

is there some way?

That I've missed

no.

way.