Cincinnati, OH @ Woodward Theater 05/05/18 #poetry

Schwervon!

fullsizeoutput_84d photo by John Smallwood

Cigarette butts and apple sauce.
There’s aliens in our midst
Self indulgent birthday guitar solos
Lavender oil on bearded clams
Green lights that turn green
And then green
And then back to green again.

You made a sound
Like a little baby,
When you were a little baby

I wore my funeral dress to the wedding
You put your credit card
Where your mouth is
Lisa 4517

Say you say me
I hear you crying out
Behind a wall of doubt
And who will pay for the wall

Too poor to take the pill
I’ll leave you in my will
Then foot you with the bill
Attica!
Atta boy!
Add a bake potato for just
Three bucks!

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Side Lines 4/29/18

IMG_6769

photo by Rosie DeGennaro

To learn that I will not be the one
To take you across the finish line.

And life can even be better with a bum knee.
Unlocking the heeling properties of ice

At this point I’d take a satisfying bowl movement
Over a drink any day.
Who am I kidding,
It was always this way.
Since I was seven,
I had my own bathroom.

And what a beautiful discovery
That it is okay to cheat
When the rules are there
To keep the lights on.

Where water collects
On an oily pan.
The similarities between
A monk and a clown.

Walking a dog through the
Blooming buds
I have learned my role
In this love affair.

I am not the one
Taking you across the finish line.
I am the one cheering you on
From the side lines.

It’s time

The light changes things
Three weeks is a long time

The rock changes
No connection to history
It’s just the wind
The midpoint
A scab on a knuckle
Word of the day

The rock changes
So unfimiliar with real love
It doesn’t move or try.

Maybe I am the first to notice
An astronaut of rocks
I see the dents, soften

They are like I was
I am like them.

The paper lives 

The paper lives
We take it seriously
Or not

The sticks we sit on
In in waiting room

Wet leaves
Beneath  our
Hospital beds

The art work drips
From the side of the staircase

Keep us from falling out

We decorate with rocks
And native grasses
The dog smells the day
From the back steps

The millions of coffee mugs
Not properly washed
When the work creates
Dirty dishes serve many purposes

Middle ground

Some say you can never go home
But if you are born in Kansas
A part of you will never leave.

The sky is painting
The essence of flatness.
Everything else
Fancy words,
Games of light and color.

Always look outward
Out, out, out.
We are not beginning or ending
All the time.

Mystery is everywhere
We hold it in cracked hands.
Steamy machines on cold mornings.
We take in beauty,
Share it in a carving on a picnic bench.

Wave in passing,
Compare notes about the work
On the way home.

Control Respect

When you showed your father
You could hold that snake
Without flinching.

When you heard them coming
Wrapping your finger around
The plastic trigger.

When you first glossed over.
Feeling the truth in blood
Learning to hold the leash.
The thrill of releasing the lie
About meat and making things happen.

Curled into a ball, in your bed
Anticipating unknowable lightening strikes,
Listening for the RAP TAP TAP of rain drops
The thunder shook your walls
Like the sides of a roller coaster.

That day in summer camp.
The tools and the protocol
The wood in your hand
The passing of the torch.

It’s not about control.
It’s about respect.
Respecting the fear
The sacrifice and distant thunder,
The child
And childhood that ended.

Coercive Diplomacy

The leash follows your explorations
I keep my thumb on the button
I’ll bag your shit
For my neighbors

You feel free and safe

We limp along
Two bullets at the bar
Patriots under duress
Hollywood guilt
Outside the body

Boys find their purpose
Playing guns like guitars
Piece of wood
A Samari sword

At what age can I start judging?
To save a life
How big do I have to be?
How important
To me