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.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

biographical note

Born in a tornado,

caught and spanked by

an obstetrician 2 counties upwind,

this demon freak of Enlightenment wins

souls, hearts and minds to his cause with ease

as he strives to shoehorn himself into starring roles

of biblical prophecies - thwart him,

for all our sakes, please

deal.

the dumbest game of cards
there is, The hearts
for love, and constancy,
the spades for death, and
fate: dig deep
the clubs for strength, for valor

keep your diamonds. Filthy lucre
fails to dazzle me, however well
it catches light, in facets cut
with cunning craft
to no avail.

we cut the deck and dealt our cards
our hearts betrayed, turned fragile, broke
from nerveless hands our clubs fell hard

we called all spades as spades - misspoke

the diamonds only
kept their shine

as hard as anything you please
and no one bluffed, no tricks
were played. We lost.

With honor, grace,
and ease.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

pickpocket

ask me to play
I am no damn good
there's a pick in my pocket
at all times, just in case
there's a guitar to hand
I've a song I can fit
to any occasion, or
- this one at least.

it will hover and run
on the strings that are strung
to vibrate between your heart
and your head. Clumsily sung,
and fumblingly played, it will strike you
quite dead. I am, as I said

no damn good.

bad directions

You gave such good directions back.
I found my way up little roads,
then on to big, infallibly away from you:
the last place that I want to go.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

reading poetry is hard!

reading poetry is hard! work,
you know? pushing your eyes over
and through lines, especially
with your mind
occupied trying
to find
the right rhythm and sound,
from among who knows how

many possible options, what
with the free-form structures
poets seem to prefer these days. (And
so do we! Readers, frankly - who needs
the old 'sing-song' shit?) but

it's still hard work, no matter
how beautiful we can tell the words
are. Our eyes push
into and through
and over syllables, line breaks, meter that seems
to bounce one way, then caroms off an extra
stress and rolls free,

we run back to catch up with it. And pick it up,
wondering

(and no, I am not demonstrating what I mean
within the flow as I go. Please. Trifling,
trifling tricks - beneath us both) well.

there's one way to make it easy, though:
read it out loud. Give the beauty of the words
a chance to make out with the love of your own
voice (You know you do.) and give the sense
of the words a chance to be read: only one way,
as you read it through. As naturally as you can manage!
it - words can be read, as if they were not a poem. Give
the poet a chance, to give you that. Give the poet a chance
to do a poet's job: to make the words tell. Read it out
loud,

give your mind a chance to
stop trying to figure things out.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

the aerialists

I love how much you care, and
I've seen this all before, and
I know you dare, you will dare all
I sit here, wincing - dread the fall
as you go through your high-wire act
you dance your partner through
dead-weight

I've seen how this act ends, before
but never from
someone so great
at making it believable

that I suspend my disbelief
and pray to God (we know not of)
that you will death-defy it, please! - not come to grief!
- but carry through, with one true love
intact for life

you fling yourself
into the fear

my heart takes flight -
I can't take more!
of this: I close
my eyes,

and

wait to hear

last words, time

"angels flitting through the clouds
eyes above, and so below
we hide our faces, blush and pout
nothing that we said was meant
to sound like what came out our mouths
and though we each wish fervently
the other could come off as well
as they could in our wildest dreams
(and theirs as well), as waters swell
we know the chance we both so want
has punctured, and is sinking fast
if either of us has the sense
to shut up -

let this moment pass!

it isn't what we both intended
now, it can't be guided back
- oh, now -
here comes the ground, and

after we crash -

how do we just fade to black?"

Monday, January 23, 2012

"a perfect world"



we've been lying long enough
so tell the truth to yourself for once:
admit that you've got nothing in your heart for me,
for real

it's not easy to tell you off
I love you more than I've ever loved
and I still can't quite figure out why we can't seal the deal

in a perfect world,
I am perfect for you
you are perfect for me

in a perfect world,
we are perfectly sure:
this is meant to be

a perfect world

but the world we're in
has built a wall between
and we can dream about it
but we'll never wake up in

a perfect world

we both share a recurring dream
where we're together eternally
it always seemed our lives would just keep building
to that point

but that's exactly the point of it
we've built a building where we can't fit,
and I'm so sick of building it
let's just burn the whole damn joint

in a perfect world,
I am perfect for you
you are perfect for me

in a perfect world,
we are perfectly sure:
this is meant to be

a perfect world

but the world we're in
has built a wall between
and we can dream about it
but we'll never wake up in

a perfect world

you and I are a perfect fit.
and I just want to give in to it.
I want to just rededicate my life

to this denial

but somehow that's how it never works
our best intentions create the worst
and if our hearts
are ruined now,
at least we lived a while in a perfect world

I am perfect for you.
You are perfect for me.

In a perfect world: we know perfectly well,
this is meant to be a perfect world.

But the world we're in has built a wall between,
and we can dream about it,

but we'll never wake up in
a perfect world.

snooze

it's time for me
to leap to my feet with a mad, joyous shout
and go back to sleep

Saturday, January 21, 2012

failure to dial


There is no possible point at which
I wish you wouldn't calll me
except: I am drunk

so right now,
the only time I would tell you this:
I wish you wouldn't call me.

but every other time
I am
so rarely drunk,
I wish you would

for I could tell you every thing
in such good cause,
and only good

primacy

a cry for help,
before I die
is all I'd ever ask someone
the ones who love me would rush in
to devastate, defend
me from

the enemy,
without, within
it doesn't make a difference
well all I'd ever ask of him
some mercy,
please

I was here first.

Anyone who could,

help

Thursday, January 19, 2012

off the map

A paper town for a paper girl,
a notebook street to press between
the pages lined and ruled so straight,
it's all so blank
- it's all so clean

her eyes flick flame

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

"creating a vacuum"

Sex, with her, was always a complete
preoccupation. I had to make room
in my mind for the blood loss
once she started in.
I made that room, and I filled it
with what nature abhors. The damage,
I fear, will eventually become irreparable.
If I keep going
if I keep going
if I keep going

it will

Monday, January 16, 2012

birth defect

My feelings are no deeper
than the tip of my tongue,
and the top of my head
is plugged straight into my heart
because that is where most
all
of my thoughts come from.

It's a birth defect
I'm just lucky I guess

I will bore myself to sleep
with everything that went wrong
and wake up knowing what to do -
and it's okay if you won't
I am a surface of infinite shallowness

it's a birth defect
I'm just lucky I guess

I can tell you any answer
without having to think
because I'll never stop to wonder
what you meant when you asked
I will take my best guess
and that's the answer you get,

it's a birth defect
I'm just lucky I guess

and you can try another take
and I will take it from the top
as many takes as it takes
to get it right, I won't stop
I'm on my personal best
I don't deserve or try
or have to impress
anybody ought to see
that I just do what comes next
I can't take credit
for a blessed bit
of any of it.

I am a surface
of infinite shallowness,

and I was born so inclined
that I have rolled ever since.
My heart lives on the tip of my tongue,
it's a cinch -
I will sneeze for years
to make up for how much I am blessed

it's a birth defect
I'm just lucky, I guess

Sunday, January 15, 2012

strike anywhere

these conversations never start
from my end. I lay flat, relaxed
I never want to chafe, intrude
I do love to combust, react -
but I am cool

with silence, too.

If your cool fingers hold the match
and if you bring it down, across
this dull and flinty strip will catch
with sparks like skies of stars, coax
your sulphur tip to blaze. Your small
investment - pressure, friction, paid
in conversation, smoke and flame
by such dark arts

are fires made.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

bed and breakfast

And as if this

was all we need,
here we are, and we can't sleep.
But when we wake they'll bring a tray -
is it enough

for you?

ok

if I have any enemies

if I have any enemies
(and I do; I have one)
I just wanted to say
for the record, for all
to see:
I am pathetic.
And I never pretended not to be
my house is a mess
my house is not in order
my life is a mess
my relationships
are horrible; the worst state
that they could possibly be
in. And I hope
you're happy.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

gifted

you can't steal what's freely given

- unless love is just a bargain?
and then suddenly, conditions
can be voided, overridden -
leaving someone feeling swindled
- getting not what had been
bargained for.

A deal like that's for saps.

That loan
will never be secure.

to make sure I'm safe

cop behind me
around every curve

to make sure that I'm safe

both hands on the wheel,
I am writing a note to myself:

"don't swerve"

Sunday, January 08, 2012

amazingly little

it's amazing how little the world
seems to care, once the world has shrunk
down to one person (or two,

if you're counting yourself -
which you never could! It's amazing
how little it adds,
when you do)
.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

trust cuts

the words that you say
turn into truth
so much faster than they have any right to

later on, I'll be shocked but
for this moment, it feels
like I have known this

for so long that it has always been real

Thursday, January 05, 2012

"trick"

I say what I mean.
Shamelessly.
In the strongest

possible
terms

that are true.

If you don't believe,
I don't mind - should I be?
Hurt?
or concerned?
I don't see why. Do

You?

You are quite free to find
any meaning you wish
every word that you hear
what it's worth - take it for

what you want. You will see
That I'm so mean, and fake

But I mean it all, bitch:

More than you'll ever take.

zoo exhibit

my love for you is a beast that has been
caged but not tamed
and not a sleek and pretty one

it looks out from behind hard bars
and eats you up with greedy eyes
and you are all it ever wants

it isn't feeding time now love
go sleep in straw for now, let lie
your keeper knows you're not a pet

tomorrow is another day
it's almost here
what you will get

what will be next?
another day of letting lie? or time
for something fresh and new
to die

strike anywhere

these conversations never start
from my end. I lay flat, relaxed
I never want to chafe, intrude
I do love to combust, react, but -
I am cool with silence, too.

If your cool fingers hold the match
and if you draw it down this line
(a small investment on your part)
your pressure, friction, heat combine
this dull and flinty strip will spark
like skies of stars, shot hot
and sprayed, to coax
your sulphur tip to flame
and conversation - where there's smoke,

by such dark arts
are fires made.

overawes

my cradle spun
like a tree without leaves
whose clouds had all set
eternally
in the mind of a girl
whose eyes, cast down
into fortunes of fate
rule this shit town.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

used to have a thing

I used to have a thing
for blondes with great big tits
and then I had a thing
for dye-job feminists
and after that my tastes ran
all the way to pasty goths
and then my tastes ran screaming back
to hard-core christians, plighting troths

At some point I got heavy into atheistic jews
'til smartassed girls with big behinds
became my favorite muse
And then I had a thing for you.

But I don't think it's going to work out, though.

You're not my type.

lullaby, rising

all we happy travelers
are flying home from holidays
weary and relieved, we queue
(that's British. It means "wait in line")
heading home a hundred ways
our journeys over
zones of time
that wash beneath our drifting planes
the sky spreads pillows
sheets, and all
so weary, grateful,
in we climb. And up we climb,
'til down we fall

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

resolution

the rambling
is the mechanism
to get to understanding
myself. To an outsider,
it may seem like magic -
some amazing trick! This fool
lays out in plodding style, brick
by brick, some yellow-brick road
as he walks, it winds, until he gets to
well, where it was pretty obvious he
was headed, the whole time. To me,
though - I need to figure out
where this next brick
goes.

Monday, January 02, 2012

the wall

the wall in my mind
is one brick wide
but it stretches to the heavens
on such firm ground
that I know: I will never get through,
or around -
even with you
on the other side.