Saturday, October 9, 2021

The Battle Approaches (cut up after Huelsenbeck)

the rivers your parrots and
the towers’ walls have refastened
oh you rivers
but in freedom        bag man        female your hands
reach into the pockets of your veins

gigantic high silk hats
the shapes of angels

thus you form the hot floods    
they have pitched tents from a misfortune
a great battle passed over you
their dazzling eyes
lungs livers and slashed throats
the enormous ladies’ breasts expand in
balloons of the magi
armies of photographs
your lips’ sleep

gigantic high silk hats
the shapes of angels

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Thursday, August 19, 2021

It Adds a Lot to the Handshakes

my mother brought my two heads west to california
there was an oil on us

quite young     have     in my hand
a very narrow definition of bridge

it’s a lump stretched out flat     i would call a doctor
except for the siren noise

which room was that?     hieroglyphics?
did describe apparition any?

people were living bed in trance experiences
bed was terrified

it lets loose when it moves around
people go there for the family house vista

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Around We Go O Western Civilization

never eat anything small
about a painful dilemma

at first was interested
a vast dome from their 
three hundred years of
kept      company
trading      themselves
like them themselves brawn
for centuries

with the paw they tried to sign treaties
aromatic ways      side harmonies
the nerve center of the confused renamed bacteria
the supreme right to warehouses was the seaport of denial
fixed      was largely composed to western dress
needles to themselves
so sing      a major religion
    sing      dirt on earth
    sing      it could be cornfields
    sing      narrow worlds collide in orange marmalade
saliva the new ocean rolling in
see that as a new horizon
    i am square miles
    i am islands by the dust motes
    i am history in three paragraphs
    i am alpenglow on electric teeth
    you are      out there
    somewhere      too

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Manufactured Dreams

this     hot     breath     of dream
out of the brain of your eyes
goes straight from your soul like a sudden street run
alive     then sleeps outside my window

the cat hisses     scratches glass     slaps
dreamland the way you’ve staggered off the road
but i hear you on the other side of transparency
that distance     as if you’re using someone else’s lungs

as if this dream has been breathing from under water
searching its own white scales as squirrels search for acorns
in good years it’s you looking for a deity
in bad years it’s you looking for yourself
searched for as fish foam eludes cats in its water treason
as deep bread huddles to stay hot until a window opens

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Tuesday, May 4, 2021


            end of the movie
            movie of the end
            of the movie end
            of the end movie
            end movie of the
            movie end of the

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Saturday, April 3, 2021

The Moon's Influence Completely New Tests

to be kings of          pork
it was even from somebody's radio
medical knowledge of dinner trays
sometimes now it          we
had teeth          very raw
you had it on your hands or it's an echo
than more terrified garbage

neither of us without the ability
to work the taste of this arm

the war center stinko
certifies addition
we could so of this elbow
away from tears:
            the music that would snarl noise outside
            not chain the party is where it enters
            coming into the box          courtroom
            a vivid applause from recorded memory
            can you hear it?
            a very serious animal
            loose from the squeal from last year
            there is no deity necessary
            often          again

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Tarzan's Twin

like a moON munching AIRpLANES
lIke ARCHimedes below the FLoor plAYing war games 
on youR cOMPuter
one TWIn STarts     turns to the oTher ASKS
is this HISTORY?

only if you beG fOr it after it’S HAPpEned
onLy IF you’rE numb to the tOUCH of the twine
that YOu Wrap around your knees before you RUN

and then iF yOu tRy to remember the Scent Of deBris
it’s like meAsuring the MOON’S jaws witH calIPerS
FROM a car MADE from the diSCARdED grains
of STAle Bread poker chips     silicON     salt     BONE

LOrd greysTOke where in tHe jUnGlE is your mansion?
can I See it thROUGH the GHOSTs of umbilical fACTORieS
BrokEN Time tunnels ape meMOiRs lEonine preTENSIONs

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Poem from a Photograph (for Adam David Miller)

maybe the coldness has an air about it
maybe the cold air they play 
in the slow movement of a symphony
no comfort     the brass frozen over the strings
cold smoke     the woman exhales
and her eyes cross as they disappear in haze
that reconstructs itself as flowers at her feet
she used to wear them wreathed around her hair
free in celebration not that many days ago

the third sense is memory
i haven’t seen this photograph in several hours now
and few of my friends still smoke tobacco
nothing to remind me     not even dreams of sleep
just the roughened smoke of imagined image
of someone whose hand I must have held 
not so long ago

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Friday, January 29, 2021

Three Dictionary Poems

I  free:
            a political of speech
            being able to

II  ice:
            come motionless
            cover with to preserve
            formal or
            ice cream

III  fragile:
            to break
            and staring

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Sunday, January 10, 2021


thank the chair and its shadows
the backrest pillow laid lazily against the seat
the sunlight coming in

thank the window and its politics
the dappled light of leaves
the people who planted trees here

the one woman leaning forward
as if she can’t hear
but she can    the artifice of conversation

thank noon    though it’s soon over
even a day doesn’t dictate forever
even the privilege of this day
even the light feast of noonday socializing
come another day    light will be light again
the day a full day of an again lively earth

Friday, December 18, 2020

Folk Tale

i realize i got confused
didn't know whether it was an airport or a bus station
so i went in
and there were me and horatio alger
feeding dollar bills into a squat machine
wheeze it went
whirr   whirr   whirr
and pound notes came out
each with both our pictures on them
and each embellished with exchange rates

i was satisfied
we were making money

the last thing i saw as i left were horatio and myself
working       making more money
and it made sense
my having visited
it made sense

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Monday, November 23, 2020

One Town in Two Cities

i went to a party in a two-storey house in a camera from a window
drinking and smoking and tired him from his book rack
a walled shadow     
i turned a corner on a snowy london afternoon
i looked     are bed     
one woman with precocious talent

beckon to me with his right five photographs 
of 60's british rock musicians
age and whose photo     joined her at the door     
we walked up into the hall
and sit up and find myself in a room the size of my bedroom
downturned beds     two sleeps     tree lightning and quick cadences

            i look down and find that i     cut close     about twenty feet from me
            threw it to the man on earlobes     fine short grey hair cut roman style
            the dog’s leash and the psych tech’s uniform     his forepaws
            that i can remember nothing after walking half a block
            i am reading a magazine article and the pillow in my sleep
            dreaming their dreams or to begin in a few minutes
from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Thursday, October 29, 2020

Empty Streets at 3 AM

i really did like insane

grounds for people
and then        because movie fudges
the female a changed starling as a bird
the author not my hunch
the star that is source on every dollar
town named killer himself

a human where
as someone possessed
i haven't turned up any
ritual murder gang
a changed aura
that means that
in real life

it must be realized
everything that anyone can
experience is an intellectualization
empty paraphernalia of the drug
when available
obviously real

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Friday, September 11, 2020

The Emperor's Lunch

pain     pain    nonstop urgency
goat demons hang from grey hairs     in my nose
a blue dragon flew into one of my ears
bamboo grows inside my legs
my ankles grow steel traps around them
on cold nights my knees hurt
hair grows on my back like an animal’s
i have always treated you as an abstraction

how do you do?
so glad to meet you
have you suffered yet?
would you like to take a course in it?
i would too
but all the teachers are busy

no grey hair died yesterday an hour ago
and i wake up every morning for the emperor’s lunch
there is no mystery to focus on imagine the hour
and entire countries of in my blood seems it’s always been
the knife being invisible
the french toast sunrise horizon
awake!                      awake! 
do it!

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Friday, August 21, 2020

Plumbing's Revenge

i must have looked manic
searching    all over the castle
for the manuscript that held captive
the last words of count dracula

i knew they were mine to find
even in the dimness of night
because the ooze of centuries can’t take away
the phrases everyone needs to know

trump looked for his most meaningful phrases
all over the white house    mar a lago
the former environs of everyone he’d ruined
the throbbing ecstatic insides of his cellphone
the slimy grit of his intestinal mind
but he couldn’t find them at all
and decided they must have been abducted

but they still clung around
more real than the statement of a fictional vampire
bright day or dim night
in the pipes leading from his golden toilet
to the soft muddle of his dismal mind
and back again    flushed    over and over

from Trump Tics (2020)

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Middle-Aged love Poem (for Judy)

imagine i a peddling across
evanescing to of so you
deal down to starlight
mutual many then
the years these lines
bicyclists on sparkles
my forehead

            imagine evanescing deal
            mutual the bicyclists my tickling
            i to down many years
            on a peddling across
            of so     on you starlight
            these lines then sparkles
from Oedipus'First Lover (2009)

Thursday, July 23, 2020

In Memory

cold weather seems to freeze depression
keep it alive like last year’s stumbling half-dead mammoth
hold it like a breath that’s six months past its time to breathe
a sheen from a knife inside a cloud of frozen mist

i would pretend i was warm inside this house this cold
thermal depression the numbness of these walls keeping the ice away
normal      succession      the next word is normal
like wood an end event until you see the rot the next spring

            you’ve felt the way i’ve felt for days
            hearts brought down in descant above an empty melody
            throbbing in memory      all the death this year
            robbing one sense of another the notes settled all wrong
            starts and pauses      stops      heaps like the cold pepper of ash
            strewn deep upon itself      numb hearth      not ice      not heat

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Friday, June 26, 2020

An Inch of Burlesque

edge of the stage      i was
as a lower curtain
barbaric cheekbath of the tub
the nape of her      he could see
gleaning      now wall now not

            first of all
            i want you to stoically unbutton
            i don’t care what

mime who was playing
perched tree trunk      she edgewise
her ass than yours i
said      inner thighs
don’t care whose      i’m starving
language morphed to lit him ravenous
eager to dive down
he smoke and feathered through the door
drunk on images of who was studying fire
dipping his tongue into
like a hummingbird
haven’t had a dream of a meal for weeks
asylum      wet
the return to religion

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Toll Free

please call toll free
he is waiting for your call
inside a toll booth
that he is locked into
inside his own telephone
where he has to answer
all the time
and he hopes one of these times
you’ll sing to him
and he’ll be free

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Upper Story Coffee House

praise this dream:
            the moving sidewalks
            and all those cars snoring

they’ve been here they’ve been here they’ve been here before
where they save coffee from itself
and select words from an afterlife:
            he what with dream
            tall with the blond fur cup
            exhilarating little men running in unison
            up the stairs of your coffee mug
the coffee:
            among themselves to drink it for you
            watching roads of more energy
            dreaming an earthquake yawn
            the quake tighter      tighter      around their ankles
            to keep you vibrating in your chair where someone
rolls the instantaneous speed is incredible
but the suits relax      grow hair
break flame
            a traffic in hilarious souls
            a freeway of nervous inferno
            ricocheting off destination signs
            like fireworks
            heaving themselves out of caffeinated skies

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Current Affairs of Sleep

my radio has bled volume     the winds came
the way the stuffed bear
the sight of disappearing eyes 
down the blue lanes of another world
then rolling across lawns all over the city
as if hazy in sleep     if i only spoke a language there
sitting on your belly
rises and falls with your breath in dormition
over standing stones of a riverbed
the snoring articulation of political speech
all the little fish     the kings of the current
on the sea     of dreams

            the blue stream of notes
            each note bleeding
            blue water
            like the imagination of a fist-sized stone
            just removed from the current’s common babble

imagine the pasted-on paper wings of angels
your shoe     its eyes open
as if the bombs weren’t bigger     wouldn’t drop
than larvae     of intermediary windstorms
all the dust from the cacophony
the screaming animals the baby’s severed leg
excited     wild     the voice from the radio’s grill
the mass of the pits where there used to be a cathedral
death worshiping himself in the ultimate aesthetic choice
the knowledge of his music’s wrath    popping out eggs
from the eye of the storm   

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Monday, April 20, 2020


if ghosts were given flesh
they would be wallpaper for sunset

the open-mouthed birthcry of your day
would set my eyes to flame

there is a cave inhabited by troglodytes in operating scrubs
it holds the earth’s nervous system as a baby would in its paw

when i first visited here i didn’t notice the cobblestones
it was all sand to me     not yet bunched into stone

whenever i see a historical hero’s statue at an intersection
i see that he can stare in one direction only

the sand blows slowly through the city
each grain with its own hands opening for the first time

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Sunday, April 5, 2020

The Concept of Travel

the concept of a brick breathing
feet missing last year’s steps
dead people talk among dead buildings
the voices between them fading like memory into the facade

so he fell face up on a barroom floor
which one is this?     voice of the bartender
he’s out cold but he’s smiling     which century
did he fall from this time?

consider the virgin mary
pink in complexion no longer yellow or blood blue
she holds the strange antennaed infant to her chest
the gulps of alien suckling     noise bouncing off the walls
think i died once     fell     cracked my head
the minister said i was smiling    head on the bricks    on the clouds

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Thursday, March 12, 2020


either of the bird        bat
or of an airplane

of a stage out of a fleet

to hasten        speed
of a certain shade of opinion
in the arm        shoulder        leg
of a stage out of sight of the audience
to wound        love

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Biodance (from Salvador Dali's "Homage to Terpsichore")

so both and everyone dancing
from to your hand to a sky that
dreams on the leaves of fingers
            you everyone

you’ll teach of your heart as a hotly coastline
your belly worships that your feet
your halo reaches the stars its variegated light
            watching you     who now the dance

you with metal plates of heart
silicon feet and your high wired head

you with the branches of tree the wires of your technology

you cast your hips     swish of electrical wine     to the two of you

to your you     dances too
to your hands light a brisk dancing sky

from Oedipus' First Lover (2009)