Answering Odd Questions About Shipping Packages

(Photo Credit: Flickr / Infusion Fibers)
(Photo Credit: Flickr / Infusion Fibers)

What is this?
Yesterday, I shaved my dog
and had a slice of depression.
Today, I sent out a few emails
and assumed I’d accomplished something.
Tomorrow, I will earn $100
for answering odd questions about shipping packages.
Saturday, I will write poems with children.
Then I will see my aged and ever-aging parents
for the second time within a month
and very little will have changed in their lives.
Very little has changed in mine
since I’ve turned 26
and they will ask for updates
as curious parents are wont to do
and I will tell them that
I’m waiting, still waiting, ever waiting
for my carrier pigeons to return home
with any message whatsoever
even bearing the worst
would relinquish one rein’s grip
on all these potential lives holding me in places
fluttering out of existence
like feathers upon the earth.
But tomorrow,
tomorrow I will earn $100
for answering odd questions about shipping packages.
Tomorrow will have a purpose.

This Is How You Woo Her (for Junot Diaz’s Alter-Ego)

[Photo Credit: Flickr / MarySmith(NOLA13)]
[Photo Credit: Flickr / MarySmith(NOLA13)]

     I

There has never been a need to rush.
Attraction is 90% mental
and 10% timing, hold the touch.
Let your tongues dance from afar,
whisper wisps of nothings
and everythings in her ear.
Let your words act like magnets –
she’ll give you the sign when she’s ready.

     II

Fingertips are your friends here.
Let them pirouette and electric slide
down every bump of spine,
pulse promise of power given
just so that it may later be taken.

     III

Your lips know galaxies and oblivion.
They feel what your mind had
always thought you’d wanted,
grazing down bodies
waiting for the feast.
Trust them in their blind pursuit.

     IV

There will be valleys and troughs.
Learn how to use both
and you will become god
amongst broken and breaking men.
Your acolytes will follow you
over and under until they can fight
it no longer – they will succumb to you,
giving up their bodies as prized sacrifice
for your devotion of her every inch.

The Food You See Is Not The Food You Eat

(Photo Credit: Flickr / ElyceFeliz)
(Photo Credit: Flickr / ElyceFeliz)

I

Marketing is a deceptive fucker.

Every commercial you watch about fast food
has been doctored, dressed by a culinary mortician,
made to look proud before its final drive down
your throat to your bowels.
Engineered to be resistant of decay,
never really designed to be devoured,
it fights your digestion, will only cause you pain
with each and every swallow.

But let the ads run on in technicolor
at the exact moment your lunch has worn off
when you’re at your weakest
when you can taste the salt and sweetness
from your sofa, salivating
like someone’s dumb psychology experiment.

II

The best pleasures are best delayed.

You will eat this now
you will even think you enjoyed it,
but once the chemical rush
winds down and wears off,
it’ll leave you at your lowest
feening for another ounce
of whatever took you away
from shit you were swimming in
just so you could have it
swimming inside you.

III

Listen when your body speaks.

It’ll whisper at first –
You don’t have to finish your whole plate
like mommy used to say –
but habits have always screamed louder,
and you’ll not hear its pleas.

It’ll fight the onslaught next,
expelling what you never needed,
punching itself with weakness and wants
so the overriding brain will drop the fork
to grip the back, massage the muscle,
make it remember
that they’re still connected.

It’ll surrender at final,
knowing the battle has become futile,
too far gone, too fat grown –
got there one bite at a time,
one choice after another,
one ignored whisper
that fell silent
upon your writhing tongue.

Your Goods

(Photo Credit: Flickr / milkandhoney2012)
(Photo Credit: Flickr / milkandhoney2012)

This tastes like sin
like something
my mouth knows
it shouldn’t have
much less enjoy.

It reminds me
of my childhood –
the kid my mom called husky
because it sounded nicer,
placated me with sweetness.

It reminds me
of anything but my childhood –
the processing of something
that was supposed to be
passed like grandmother
down from one loved to another.

And each toss of the tongue
becomes a smile allowed
a guilt of glutton’s gut
an urge to slow and make
each bite worth its weight.

When I Wake

(Photo Credit: Flickr / AmirBayat)
(Photo Credit: Flickr / AmirBayat)

These are the breaks,
the breaks of bones that were never broken,
brokenness as inborn as blood.

To be human is to suffer,
and every morning I feel my most human:
unwind myself from the fetal,
position pieces upright and puffed-chested
so the metal of my spine may realign itself
with the stars it once came from,
the dust that once formed itself
into warped vertebrae.

I have felt my age ever since
the doctor made me magnetic,
have siphoned wisdom with every crack
of joint, every creak
of bone, every sigh
of pain released back
into a world that has always been
sharing too much of itself.

The Boy Who Waits on Walls

(Photo Credit: Flickr / Thomas Hawk)
(Photo Credit: Flickr / Thomas Hawk)

The night of their wedding,
you were a beautiful bridesmaid,
and I, a well-dressed passerby
anchored to his trembling dreams.

And had it not been for the courage
kicked in by six Kentucky Mules
and finally having learned to clothe
my mood and myself as a man should,
I would have been that same boy
broken by his shyness,
bolstering the wall near the bathroom –
like he was always poured
out to be a concrete beam
meant to hold up your affections,
but never to have them reinforced.

Loves and lovers come and leave,
but I’d never left my lonesome
self behind, leaned back into him so softly –
the fear of rejection and embarrassment
as form fitting as a worn shoes,
a pair that has ripped ruts
in the packed clay beneath
his feet, the same clay
you’re now claiming as a dance floor.

One day, I will not need
these things poured into me
and these things hung upon me
to make me worthwhile.
You will know it
by the smack-stamp of my step,
the smirk in my eyes,
and the fact that I have broken
from the wall just long enough
to leave your dance prints behind.

For the Stories (for Billie Holiday’s Pain)

#8 - For the Stories (for Billie Holiday's Pain)

I want you to give a shit.
I want you to make me give a shit.
Hell, if you can give me the shits,
I’ll even take that.

But you can’t,
or you won’t try
or you’re so fearful of failure
that you’d never even thought why.

Instead, you copy
every other sad sucker
who’s folded up his pride
traded in her ego
to make a go of popularity,
which, today, is just synonym
for placeholder
because you’ve never been much
of an innovator.

So go tell the band to strum
the same four tired chords again.
Beat the dead horse until
she trots on the wind again.
You must revive her –
her trail-blazed footpaths
are the only reasons your stories
will ever be able to find ground
when the flood returns
to wash us back to basics.

"How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live." — Henry David Thoreau

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