Sunday, November 30, 2008

Untitled #30

I then lose all of my intuitions
All of my dreams become one-dimensional
I don’t see them anymore
I simply see myself in them
I see him in them
His exaggerated words
Pouring out of their skin
Like icing onto a cake

There’s no escaping
It tastes sweet at first
I start to lick salt off of the lips of those who pay me interest
I sense the ground moving below us
Shaking around our feet
Lifting us towards the sun
And letting us slowly brush the dirt over and onto our lifeless faces

I repeat the words
Over and over again
Take the trip with those who have other intentions
I inhale the plants
And fuck their cultivator
Hoping it will turn his eyes back around
Back towards me

The deviant fantasy of our escape
Is unfortunately cut short
By further indication that the world is up shit crick
He’s too in love with the idea of another clean angel
To see that I’m not going to last much longer

Then I hear the news
That bullets don’t miss
That there are plans for the next thirty days
Which will inevitably rip us into a new bleak oblivion
And I know how it’s supposed to go
How it’s meant to happen
How we’re all finding the ground

I circumnavigate the details
Sneaking in during the sermon
And finding the cold silver in the top desk drawer
Below scattered papers of words,
And repeated for a better sense of denial

I will say goodbye to the flowers
And be on my way
Back to the front porch
Back to his bedroom
Back on stage
Back around again
Back and forward
And back
And forward
Until it all stops making sense again

- C.W.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Untitled #29

Suddenly I’m waiting with all the others
Carrying boxes into tight elevator shafts
And staring blankly forward
As some remedial human beings
Take a moment to themselves
To think about whether or not I’m familiar

I only wish I could tell them that the me they see
Isn’t exactly like the one they think they know
From the TV set
But nevertheless
At this point
I’ve learned that it’s easier to just not speak

My participation in much of anything has reached an all-time low
Even breathing feels like a task
All the air in the brown and red spaces
Undeniably stale

I find myself coughing up more than I’m taking in
Each new statement
Angered face screaming for a cause
Less than structurally sound

It’s all gonna collapse in on us
And yet I try not to believe it
Considering that such brashness
Sounds so much
Like everything else I’m used to hearing

I buy earplugs to ignore
Only to realize later
That their soft hum
Is overwhelmingly clear

It beckons me out of the cold and centered
Towards a great white light
That I almost have to force on myself
I now feel what they all are feeling
I see where it’s all going
And I can relax for awhile
Knowing that we’ve managed to find each other
Despite the fact that our eyes no longer explode at the sight

- C.W.

The backspace button is lava!

I packed it deep and it's so fresh I can smell it from here, but there's no wisdom in that bowl tonight - no, I'm wrung dry. Phew! Hang on, let me just stretch it out a minute here . . . Goddamn. I had to work for it today, ya know? You know what I mean? Simply being Dutch Pearce was not going to cut it today; I had to work for it. I had to be better than myself today. I failed. I dropped the ball. I really did. Fuck. Just now admitting that to myself is all. This is a stream of consciousness piece, ya know? So that kind of shit happens. The truth kind of shit. I've been writing these lately. They're fucking tricky, I'll tell you that. Especially for someone whose mind is a beach ridden with landmines that are actually ADHD. See? That's a shitty metaphor. What was I saying earlier about having to be better about myself today? That seemed like it could go somewhere. . . .

It could've been a nightmare, it wasn't. It was great. But I blew it.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Untitled #28

Promises of a better tomorrow
Continue to resonate in the back of our heads
As I pack my bags and return
To the purity of our creaky front porch

We all act normal with each other for awhile
Ignoring our true feelings
So as to better serve his ultimate cause

I’m not exactly sure
How I’m going to handle
The incoming and outgoing bodies
As they switch their heads back on
And calmly repeat the white lines
From the crop of printed bumper stickers

It won’t be long
Before every positive mumble
Sounds the same
And I’m sick and tired of taking what’s available
For the pain

Then it starts to rain more often
And I get used to the idea of absolute zero

I’m breathing blue
Because its impossible not to
Smiling yellow
Because sometimes I think it’s possible
That faking it has a larger effect

They let me be
For as long as all of us know it’s humanely possible
And then it crashes down around us
Exactly like it did four years earlier
Except I’m not certain I’ll be able to handle
This new
Technologically advanced

Something tells me its going to sting me harder
Than all the others
Preparing to wait in the line

- C.W.


i had a dream i was drunk
i was drunk in the dream
i was drunk when i went to sleep
i had a dream i was walking in short steps
over green grass on a hill
a slope that was curved like a body curves
the blades were sticking up and bent in the wind
there was a rocket set to go off into space
everyone was waiting for it
and i was drunk walking across the hill
i tripped because you put out your leg
you tripped me and you didn't have sleeves
you said to watch it with you the rocket going off
and so i did

we just laid there on that green hill
i was drunk in my dream
you told me that you loved that i was walking by
i told you i loved that you tripped me
there wasn't anyone else after that
we kept kind of rolling kind of laughing kind of spitting
the ground shook because it was taking off
the green trembled and it made our skin stand up
burst of fuel smell of heat we were close to each other
and i told you that there was someone close to me keeping me from you
and you told me that there was someone close to you keeping you from me
but in the orange explosion we both said we'd breach that
He told me you didn't pull a lot of tail in high school.
Now, you're getting drug patches for free.

I fucking miss you.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


If I Don't Say So Myself...
One Dude's Brief, Unedited, RiteAid-Developed, Point-And-Shoot Adventure with A Rock Band in the Northeast United States
...Mostly Vermont


Untitled #27

The weeks turn into elaborate countdowns of the seconds
I barely talk to anyone
An intensified workload
And handful of mother's little helpers
Easing my ultimate transition
Away from the basements and backyards of yesterday

A few final conversations occur
My head not gratifying some of them
With audible responses

At this point I can already project
The right kind of look
So they all know exactly what I mean

The imitator seems best at handling the downside of my exit
He whimpers like a wounded animal
Before drowning his sorrows away
And moving onto the first available halter top

I start to lose myself
In the inevitability of words
The inspirational ones only make sense
Because I'm so fucked up

Nevertheless it feels good to believe in something else for once
Something other than the soft flapping of a ripped image
As it slowly floats away in the wind
With the rest of the debris

- C.W.

no room.

this morning i woke up again in my new new room.
i rolled over and found myself alone,
my conspirator on the other side of door,
makeshift and laughable.

putting on a record that wasn't mine,
i heard two songs at once.
i stuffed my day into a makeshift bag,
smoked just a little,
grabbed an apple and slipped on out.

the sleet stung my face,
but not like bees,
which sting when the sun is out.

i wished i had had my camera
within my reach
to freeze the view of a truck's lights
facing my way, from a parallel parking spot
on the wrong side of the street.
or the older men and women
both with similar posture,
leaning against the rain.


i'm trying to tell you something

Always a good subject


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A snag in the forest of thought.

Twisting and craning, Everette Thomas cracked his back, rowed his shoulders, screwed his head, squeezed his hands into tight fists, growled a low, guttural 'fffuck you!,' and, releasing his fingers from their strangling huddle, let scatter the ashes of his rage out into the black, indifferent sea of his keyboard. Hanging over his twin-sized bed (which, by the way, took up nearly half his room), his right leg was jumping with energy driven by a highly caffeinated melange of two cups of coffee, common, spasmodic, drug-induced jittery, attention deficit hyperactive disorder, and just a little bit of remaining rage like sugar at the bottom of your first cup. He bit the tip of his thumb . . . too hard. 'Ouch! Fuck! Fuck you! Fuck your dumb fucking face. Fuck you!' he psuedoshouted in staccato fits. Trying his best to ignore his inner-criticism screaming at him: 'Coward! Fucking do something about it! What? - are you a fucking poet now?', he put his fingers to the keyboard and started typing: It's a shame that none of you are afforded the opportunity to see his ugly side and, before he could even punctuate, he was overcome by a wave of self-reproach. The jumping turned to a calm, steady foot tap. He cleared his throat and stared into the abysmal screen before him. Those words, that accusation, that power, no matter how truly obscure and menial, were his own; he could only part his lips in disgust with himself. Did any one of them suffer as he did? Could this be how everyone felt? Could everyone deal with this, too, on a daily basis? He needed to know, but he knew he never would. He had in his creative hands the veritable fate of a character he engendered into the world, but he felt like a social executioner the moment he attempted to abash that character's morality. What brought him to this seemingly insane juncture of the unreal and the real? Could it have been drugs? Was it his own doing? Was it inherent, pathological - not his fault? Furthermore (onward with optimism), could it be harnessed? He wondered, could it be lucrative to harness it? And his thoughts wandered on like that for some time, but those words still hung on the screen like a hex hanging over a cursed home. So when Everette slowly drifted away from consciousness, supine on his nude, pillow top mattress, his cat, Charlie (who's always in the mood for an arbitrary nap) - perched and floating on a piece of floorboard driftwood - jumped onto Everette's bed, landed on his keyboard, and sent those words hurling into the infinitesimal attention of his solipsistic peers.

Untitled #26

I confess my sins quickly
Patiently hoping it will set us both off
In a forward motion

He doesn’t seem in the least bit surprised
Pretending like I’m his alcoholic muse;
The new batch of transitions making my skin crawl

I medicate for clarity
Tremendously tired with the world

I hear talk of more therapy
Intensified shocks that will make me a happy flower

I study overtime to make sure I’m contributing
And avoid all their indications of change

I threaten father in the banquet hall
The tables cleaned of the fine China
He doesn’t seem to care
I’m just supposed to stay out of his way
Smile when it feels necessary
And plot my escape

I finally see the light
Once the traveling circus
Takes off out of the station
He says I’m different
And I refrain from any kind of argument
Or shallow way to place the blame
On his lack of an effort

We both know what’s coming now
Our subtle hints like bee stings
Allegoric reactions to help persuade a necessary evil
I’m all ears
My radar,
But full of green dots

My extended stay will soon be over

- C.W.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Untitled #25

The invitation is double-clicked
As I think about whom I should lie to first
The complexities of dodging the dining room table
Entangle my arms
Even though the three of us barely to speak to one another

I wonder if they blame me for occupying the chipped oak chairs
Without much concern for their history
They don’t ask as many questions anymore, though
A centered concept
That I take full advantage of

I lose my head from their supposed maturity
And slowly dissolve once the time is right
He’s excellent with space
Despite the clutter
Posters of significant colors
Tacked to the ceiling
For eyes like mine
To get lost in

I ignore calls from the other side
Smiling and nodding my head
Agreeing with his bullshit
And feeling proud of myself
For being able to tell the difference

He moves fast for a doctor
While still making sure everything’s okay
I enjoy our talk afterwards
More so than the act itself

He hints at what’s supposedly building in the background
And I laugh out loud
Having no idea what he’s talking about
It doesn’t seem logical for news to spread so slow
In such small towns

- C.W.

How Things Have Changed.

One day in August.
You met me after work and we sat outside my other place of employment. My smile probably beamed brighter than the sun that you blocked for me. I thought you were golden, and you thought I was precious. We walked all over trying to decide where to eat. Where we finally decided on that night is beyond me because all I recall are the click of your dress shoes, how I felt introducing you to a guy who also liked me and your smile when I made you hang on the utility pole. "Take a risk," I said. And you did. More way than one.

No more than a week later I’d hang from a tree limb and would kick my feet in attempts to fend off your tickling. That was the only way we touched then before that night playing mini golf. When we finished, you said you felt like climbing trees. I said that sounded ambitious, and you said I made you feel young again.

A night out in September.
I was wearing a navy blue skirt and a grey v-neck – very simple, but you loved it more than outfits I’ve put thought into. “I can see that mark above your collar bone,” you said as you bought us two cans of Pabst. I pretended not to hear you over the band just so you’d whisper in my ear. Direct shockwave to where it counts – heart and well, yes, there, too. I stood up and kissed you in front of everyone. Our first public display of affection.

Getting out of town in October.
We were the victors of that cliché college party game. We bumped fists like the Obamas even though both of us were uncertain whether or not it was him we’d cast our vote for. You stayed by my side all night as I got wrecked. I tried staying awake for the drive back up 81, but failed. I only awoke when you reached for my hand. I shifted my tired, drunk head in your direction and hoped you saw my peaceful smile in the glow of the dashboard lights. I didn’t let go until you parked at your house and ushered me inside so I could collapse into your warmth.

Tensions in November.
I fucked up and you told me to grow up. When you said not to steal your thunder, I pushed you off of me and told you that it didn’t mean mine were any less significant. You grabbed my arm apologetically and asked me not to cry and pulled me into you. When I buried my tear-stained face into your chest, you took out my ponytail, stroked my hair and said that big girls don’t cry. You said sorry and just continued to calm me down with your gentle touch. We fell asleep like that. You, the tall and lanky grown man stretched out on the lamp side of your makeshift queen-sized bed. You held on to me by my scarf and rested your other arm on the one I had across your stomach. I was the little girl in knee socks and a jumper curled up by your side, sore with tears and unable to dream sweetly because of a cluttered head. It was one of those really tender moments I’ve grown so fond of about you. You’re good at being tender when you’re ready to dream. And me? Well, I'm good at always drowning in my own shallow puddles of confusion.

emmett and mary

Take Drugs

A few days ago I learned that nothing was true
So I plunged down the life tube looking in search of…

...Something sacred and distinct that I could use,
Take with me to before when I was scared unaware of…

The daily grind-it-out-till-you-have-to-carry-your-face
The eternal all-the-days-of-your-tiny-time-here-race

Forty-fifty-sixty-all hours devoted to only me,
The bringer of the only-time-you-can-smile money

So I just wanted to feel something dead -
Plunge powder up my nose -
Make my eyeballs roll to the back of me head:

There was the white that took with it my sight
Changed me into a sheep just like all of us

There was the green that made it seem
Like I was doing it alllll right and just fitting in

There was the blue that made the truth seep
To the top of my throat burst from mine into just their mouths

There was the drinking that made me stop thinking
About anything that had to do with just being alone

I will (assumedly) rise tomorrow only to feel my slugged mind fall
Into the carved out niche languidly laying in the bowels

A huge smile: The place I need to be
Right now make lots of money!!

(L)(D)ying in a shower, blood running out the nose
Knowing the only ailment I ever had is just a consciousssss


And you can bet I got away

not for long

but it was somethin'

Sunday, November 23, 2008

When I was a little girl
something happened that just

For the first time
I shut my eyes today
for the time it took me
to smoke my cigarette,
and there wasn't any darkness.
I could see some light.

Untitled #24

I start to plan ahead
Filling out various forms
And feeling a gigantic rush of pleasure
With every envelope
Sensibly licked
Every postmark
Routinely stamped

I tell no one
Other than those who need to sign their names

As the fax comes into her daisy-filled office
My heart jumps at the extra page
He’s actually proud of me for once
I then start making up excuses
For the other side of things

All his songs sound the same
The complexity in lyrics
Making me want to systematically puke
Up a fresh meal of one’s and zero’s

My mind starts to expand at night
Waiting for the final hour to end
So I can smoke a cigarette in my first old car
My other hasn’t come out with me in it yet
My selfish fears that he’ll taint the interior
Ever present

I stop worrying about his problems
Right around the same time my new homework partner
Hands me his number and smiles like he knows
Which way the world is coming together

I ignore his sense of hope
Knowing full well who's still in charge

- C.W.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Untitled #23

He seems unamused by the news
The act of confiding in the imitation,
One that I instantly regret
Upon our initial return to his corrupted bedroom

The walls seemed to have shifted
Along with the furniture
The whole space smelling like cheap smoke and sweat

It reminds me of the person
He used to ramble on and on about
He would die before he became like the others

I lie back and let him fuck me
Whispers of genuine value
No longer floating around the space

On the other side of town
There is little discipline
And yet barely anything has changed

They’re all busy getting ready
Marking lines on the wall
To measure her height and forward motion

She looks like a dead insect
On her first last day at home
Legs viciously plucked from her body
Face flushed
And begging for the rays of the sun
To relent

“It’s going to be an interesting year without you here”
They all say

I simply tell her how much I’m looking forward to it

- C.W.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Untitled #22

My expectations,
Already low,
Fall past the line
As I'm carried around
From high point
To dead end

I'm forced to mingle
With the next in a long chain
Of successors
Internal struggles over ancient jewelry sets
Nearly extinguished
For the appeal of wide-open escapes
Full of hiding places
Passed down
To those deemed worthy

Then come the double-decker bus trips
And charitable contributions of my time
All shades of gray sucking me dry
Before freedom finally rings

I get club dizzy
With faces that could care less

They discuss compilation sets
As I gently pet their orange cat,
And continue to lie through my teeth
As if I were the person
With a made-up identity
And origin

I catch the remains of my father's night
Exiting our hotel room,
Moments after I hop off of the elevator
With a joyous disposition,
An offshoot of the facade

She's brunette,
Like mother

The suits don't explain
And I seek silence before answers
The synthesized beats still spinning
In the back of my head

Such perfect nights will soon dry up
Before being advertised as rare on EBay

- C.W.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Untitled #21

Further separation occurs from both sides
I attempt to bounce back and forth between them
With mixed results

It's then another media storm

By that time,
The indulgent figures are already knee-deep
In snowballing bile

They make suggestions about what programs
I should be looking into
The imitator starts to soak it up
Like his predecessors

(Who I'm now dubbing as a perfected weekend fling)
Flirts and gets high with the other side

I start to think about our first encounter again
My only moderately unlevel head
Overcompensating for his lack of motion
And dry mouthed mumbles

We dance one final time
Before he's gone for the internship
Mentored by the corrupt

I fall back on the pale, sensible one
Not sure if he loves me
But okay with the idea
Of fucking him out of loneliness

Dad then invites me overseas for the upcoming weeks
My unstable body jumping at the chance
Figuring all the distant wanderers
Will be impatiently awaiting my return to the secondary home
If for no other reason then because I've infected them
With such mediocre promises of boredom

- C.W.



Wednesday, November 19, 2008

November 19th, 2004

I remembered the movie "Radio Flyer" and how Elijah Wood talks to that big sad buffalo...and the buffalo tells him he needs to escape, and then they visit that buffalo ranch coincidentally, and his mom won't let him go on, and he just wants to let them free.

So I woke up and my heart was beating so fast. I love that feeling.
I started bidding on a violin on ebay tonight. I got 22 hours to go. I really hope I get it.
I don't know why, but all of a sudden I thought, "I have to play the violin again."

So. I'm gonna.

If I get it.
I keep saying "Oh man, once I get some money, I'm gonna buy a violin."

Screw it. I'm buying one now.

This is the best playlist ever.

I really love the people around me now. I know the greatest people. Everyone has their flaws...but I'm just happy I know who I know. They are all so different and all so intricate.

I'm missing something though.

Untitled #20

The sun kills us
In ways neither one is expecting
Or able to compensate for

He starts to plug in
And distort
While I search the toxic faces
For useful phone numbers
And outlets that better suit
This extensive learning experience

Then we make separate plans
Mine falling through
On account of pets,
And obscene interventions

Then the person I tried to forget calls
Stuck in a similar empty space
Shepherding the channels
With the numerous buttons
On the new remote control

We meet up
With plans of catching up
On each other's lives

And soon I am unable to contain my words
Mouth melting into cheeks and dimples

He's much less sweeter than I expected
And above everything else

I swear I see Jesus Christ by the end
Before we both light cigarettes
And blow smoke
Out of my open my bedroom window
The idea of us will soon dissolve in a similar hazy fashion.

- C.W.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I'm finally starting to live.
I'm taking the steps that need to be taken.
Mom told me she was proud of me today.
She's never said that before, not to one of her children.

I'm terrified I'll fuck it up again.


I was watching my Dads favorite movie the other night.
I thought of how much he means to me.
I thought of how much he's done for me
I thought of how lucky I am.
I thought of how much I love him.
I was high.

Untitled #19

We receive a boost in the winter
The thickness of the flakes
Convincing us both
That out sweet nothings
Translate universally

I look forward to the warnings
The both of us planning ahead
Purchasing miniaturized zip lock bags
And trudging through the imprinted, childlike footprints
In their backyards

We then breathe in
At odd intervals
White smoke and permanent grins
The warmth from the rumbling space heater
Keeping our names indefinitely engraved in the couch cushions

There are a few interruptions
But not many
Just loud shouts from his mother
About dinner

She has a soft and worn quality to her face
Multiple lovers frequently sneaking out the bathroom window
Into the cold

I almost feel sorry for the three of us
Quietly forking out second helpings,
The final serving
Intended for a new mystery man
And now split between the three of us

But I don't have the heart to tell either of them
how full I've become in the past few months

- C.W.

Monday, November 17, 2008

citrus smells like christmas in
our building and
you rub your eyes in the morning.
"it's snowing" you say in a tired voice, and
roll towards me.
we stay warm and watch what's going on
ouside, the window telling us that the
world is still moving without us.
She's at it again. Time and space and she is perfect.
I convinced her to come, I know, but it scares the shit out of me what the universe is trying to do.
I don't look at her as we walk down the street. For 3 seconds I turn my head, and
snow is falling, melting quick on her cheeks. Shouldn't have looked.
Want to shout, "I LOVE SOMEBODY!"
Whatever, you know, that means. I start to think about the men who have felt
before I am feeling now. Centuries, or years, for her, ago. But she acts like
she's never been given that old time lovin, just put on a pedestal. I try to take
her down to get her to see that I am different. I am, not, though.
She is into living. That's what gets me.
She likes the way the world looks (most days). She notices how things look, and she
smiles at simple communities of different colors and textures. Patterns, whatever. Her eyes will fix on things. They go together in her mind. Pairing, I guess you could call it. I don't know how she does it, but it makes her happy. It makes her feel like she belongs.
Sometimes we'll be somewhere and she'll smile right at me, wide eyed, entranced. She smiles right past the things I'm trying to tell her and I know she likes the way I look in that environment. I wonder if it makes her feel she belongs. With me.

Six pusillanimous members.

One to two: I'm letting loose a knot.
Two to three: You were that knot.
Three to four: I never felt the tie.
Four to five: I felt the tie too much.
Five to six: I never saw the knot.
Six to one: I never saw the tie.

Untitled #18

We do our shopping together
Curbing opinions so as to better prove a singular point
We are suited for each other

In that sense
It's not too different from the prescriptions,
I cringe
And swallow
Before impatiently waiting for the after-effects

However, following another shift
My eyes become white from the multicolored lights
Wearing the new brown corduroy jacket
Mother thinks is a nice gesture

I stand on the stage
Bundled next to my sister's new breasts
And what appears to be a duplicate male example
Of Dad

Matching suit,
Similarities in gestures,
His career at its beginning
The same optimistic twinkle in his head
Rotating around the rotting foundation

I hear their hushed orgasms
While trying to sleep
Back in my original womb

It's even more uncomfortable this time
My hands systematically flipping the pillows
Over and over again
To both sides
Just to see if it's ever going to feel any different

The concept of open arms is so commercialized
Especially around the holidays

- C.W.
One monkey don't stop the show.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Lonliness Remains

I'll never be beautiful, not the way other girls are.
I'll never be thin enough, if not physically, in my mind.
I could purge my organs and still I wouldn't be satisfied.
I want to run away from myself.
I want to crack my chest open wide and watch the blood spew forth, crimson and warm.
I would stand tall, erect, letting my entrails burst through the opening. Every part of me would be obvious, visible. The anguish and self-pity, the lonely nights spent hidden under the safety of my covers.
They would see it all, my audience, the street dwellers. They would see my thoughts, my insecurities written plainly on the cement. My blood would form the words as if magnetically pulled. There it would be my past, every broken promise, every forgotten dream. It would play out like the scene in a bad movie. Me, standing naked and exposed, white flesh reflecting the suns rays. They would come to me, those brave enough to approach, and study me like art. Sticking their finger, hands inside of me, the eldest would pull out my beating heart. Standing still in a circle around me they would pass my heart to one another; warm and dripping, pulsing and fighting to stay alive. Around and around it would go, circling me, taunting me. Fifty, Seventy Eight, One hundred and three times I would see my heart pass. Reaching out urgently, feverishly, I would try to grab it. They would laugh as I spun, trying to get it back. Next they would take my ribs cracking them, throwing them down like waste. Muscle sinew and bone, little by little I would fall apart, yet remain tall.
Laughter, laughter, they would be laughing all around me, taunting me, screaming my name. I wouldn't be able to get near them. Running I would chase their smiles, my organs.

City streets, taxi's stop. I try to get in, I cannot grip the handle. They want to take me away. I look inside the drivers are all angels, I cannot reach them. I remain alone, searching.
Rats flood the sewers, locusts swarm. Every building houses a million insects. As their doors open the insects swarm the city. They rush me, filling me up inside, still dropping blood I am a rotting disease. The termites get inside of me, buzzing, I can feel their wings vibrate, tickling my spine. I can hear them from the inside, chewing away my flesh, sucking what blood remains. I look down at my hands, blue flesh, black nails, fingers of bone. I plunge one inside of the wound in my chest and clench my fist grabbing a handful of insects. My hand is covered in blood, dark, it smells of rotting meat. With my hand free I shovel the insects into my mouth, handful by handful the numbers are dissipating. I chew, swallowing them they become a part of me. The wound is being filled up, organs regenerate and fall into place. I am becoming whole again.
People pass, I go unnoticed naked and shivering in this city. Children walke by clutched to their mother's side, they see me, see my pain. They look inside of me and offer their hearts, lungs, a spleen. They offer a pint of blood and smiles. I see in their eyes compassion, not pity.
A child offers me his blanket and I refuse, knowing of his attachment to it. He pulls a cloud from the dark sky and fastens a robe for me. Velvet, purple and gold with a belt made of flowers.

My blood is still flooding the streets, the people, they wear rubber rain boots, blue and grey. I can see it now, my blood draining into the sewers, filling them up. I cup my hands taking in mouthful's, gulping it down sweet, red and sticky. It fills my veins. I can feel it expanding my arteries, it is painful, dreadful.
It begins to rain big, heavy drops, grey and steely they stain my skin. I am being cleansed, purged of my sins.

My heart beating warm is in a nest, no bird just a nest of cotton and twine. I pick it up slowly, gently as if handling an infant for the first time. I hold it to my chest as it pulses, it is smaller than I remember, almost black. I place it inside the cavity that remains and peer down watching it pulse.
There is suddenly no soul around.
Walking into a river I remove my velvet robe and with leaded feet, allow my body to be pulled under. Loneliness begets me, and only flowers remain.

A Sunday afternoon, snowy and cold.

"Hello," the boy said into his phone after seeing 'Mom & Dad' illuminate on its face with a burst of distorted sound.

"Hey, bud," his father replied, his voice heavy with a fatigue the boy has never known. And so goes each generation of man: The more I carry, the less you have to.

"Hey, Dad. What's up?" the boy said into the phone, handing the bowl back to his roommate, taking the phone away from his ear for a second to exhale largely. He motioned for his friends to carry on without him, saying: "It's my dad. I'm gonna go change." And - leaving his friends laughing and talking excitedly behind him - started towards his room, climbing the stairs slowly, trying his best to extinguish his buzz just a little so as to remain stoic and attentive with his father.

"Oh, you know . . . same old shit. How've you been? How're the funds?" By now the man had learned to stop regretting having spoiled his son and had come to accept the fact that he'll always have two financial burdens to worry about - the boy's mother being the other, and far heavier weight.

"Everything's cool. I'm actually just getting changed to go tailgaiting right now. I just walked in . . . I was at my girlfriend's house," the boy started over, boastfully. "And I walked in the door and everyone was in jerseys and we're like: 'Come on, man! We're going to the game!' And so now I'm getting changed and going to the game."

"When's it start?"

"I don't know, actually."

"Who're they playin'?" The man asked his son. He'd always preferred books to sports, but, in the interest of appearing to be the protean male figure in the boy's life, over the years he'd adopted the roles of a football fan, a motorcycle enthusiast, a fly-fisherman, an archer, a treehouse carpenter, a mechanic, and, somewhat apprehensively, a sex ed teacher. The boy replied - feeling slightly foolish in his ignorance: "I don't know that either. I was told to change and that's what I'm doing now. I'm standing in my room in my underwear." The man heard his wife's intonations in his son's voice and asked him if he'd gotten a winter coat yet. The man had put some money into his son's bank account two weeks earlier after finding out that his son didn't have a winter coat anymore.

"That boy won't ever stop growin', bud. You mark my words," the man remembered his father saying into his ear almost twenty years ago at the boy's 4th birthday party.

"Nah, I didn't get one yet," the boy said apologetically.

"Ah, you fucker!" the boy's father said affably; the role of "the cool friend" proving to be a more difficult one than he'd ever imagined.

"But I didn't need a winter coat, anyway. I have a winter coat. I needed a fall coat. But my friend left his jacket here and he's about the same size as me so I just wore his jacket whenever I'd go out and shit." The man sensed his wife's machinations in his son's voice.

"Okay. Well, that's cool then. When're you comin' home next?" the man feared his loneliness was seeping through his voice and stifled it quickly: "I need someone to help me clean out the basement and shit, ya know?"

"I don't know, Dad. I mean . . . I got no way down there, ya know? I can't drive the van; that'd be so environmentally irresponsible of me, ya know?" The boy said, his attention seeming to drift away from the conversation. His father had no idea when he'd started using phrases like "environmentally irresponsible," but he felt a slight sense of ambivalence towards it all. He admired his son's conscientiousness and his many -isms, but he felt his own plight was somewhat unsung. He lived an austere life so his son didn't have to; such is the role of the father - or so he'd always thought, and had been brought up to think.

"Why on earth would you ever not want to eat ice cream, Everette?" the man remembered asking his son very gravely about a year ago when the boy had told him was turning vegan. He'd never heard of such a thing in his life, but ultimately he saw it as nothing more than a mostly harmless phase in the boy's life and stood by his side through out; buying him all kinds of vegan and vegetarian food whenever he would visit - which was becoming more seldom as the boy got older, and as the man's relationship with his wife deteriorated.

Furtively, the man lighted a joint, held the phone away from his ear for a second to take a long, hearty drag and then - exhaling quietly - let it all out: "Your mom wants me to move into Gram and Bup's house."

"Oh, man. . . . Shit. . . . Really?" the boy asked unsteadily into the phone. His father immediately regretted having put this weight on the boy, but couldn't help himself from relaxing a little, feeling his cracked ribs expand, splashing his lungs with cold relief.

What was it Mom used to always say?, the man tried to remember. "It is in the virtue of others we wash our sins away," he said aloud without realizing it. He heard his son smile on the other end, somewhere hundreds of miles away and it all started pouring out of him then: "Yeah, bud, she wants me to move down there, but I don't know how I'll ever afford it. 'Cause you know I'll still have to pay for our house for your mom to live in and probably bring all kinds of men in there with her. And I'll probably still have to feed her fucking horse every morning before I go to work, too. I don't know how I'll ever do it, but, honestly, bud, I . . . I think I'd like to. It's better than what I'm living in now, ya know? This is killing me, Everette. It really is . . . I just can't -" the man stopped himself, feeling intoxicated with melodrama and not very keen on turning his son into the role of the sponge, or the callus bartender.

"Yeah, Dad, I don't blame you. Except . . . well, I don't know."

"'Cept what?" his father probed, but lightly.

"Except that . . . well, Gram and Bup's house is so nice, ya know? And I don't want it looking likes ours. I guess I have no say in it, really, but it does have a certain integrity to it, ya know? I'd like it to always look like that. I don't want the fights and the violence to ever stain those walls - what with the beat up door handles and the holes in the halls and the fucking . . . I don't know," the boy trailed off. His father again felt overcome with self-reproach for shattering the boy's placid, but greatly inaccurate image of his life back home.

"No, no. That won't happen. I won't let that happen. I don't give a shit about that cookie-cutter house you grew up in. I'm sorry to say that you, but you know exactly what I mean. That place," the man's voice becoming wet with sadness, "was never a home. Not for anyone save your mother and her goddamn cats. Gram and Bup's house is my home, ya know? It's where I grew up, bud. It's where my parents lived and died. Well, not Gram, I s'pose. She died in Braunwin's house, but her spirit in his back home with Bup. I's talkin' to your Aunt Constance and she said: 'Well, ya know, at least back home you won't be alone.' And I said: 'What d'you mean I won't be alone?' You know how she is, Ev. And she said: 'Gram and Bup will be there." Tears catching the man's voice like a cat pouncing on an unsuspecting mouse.

"Yeah . . ." the boy said in his most comforting way, trying his best to hide his cold skepticism. In his mind's eye the boy saw his breath hanging in front of his face as he and his father drove to the funeral home to attend the first of two viewings for his grandmother.

"She had a real heart of gold, Everette. She was strict, but - now in my later years - I see that she was more so dedicated, ya know?" the boy remembered his father saying. "I remember there were years of my life . . . I'm talkin' years where I'd see my father in the morning before school, he'd be puttin' his boots and just gettin' ready to leave, and then I'd see my mother at night whenever I came home from runnin' around, and she'd be too tired to do anything but lay on the couch and listen to all of us tell her about our respective days, and - other than the weekends - that was it. Ya know? And I'll tell ya, bud, me, your Aunt Lynn, Nan, and Aunt Connie would never leave their sides on the weekends. And now she's gone, Bup's gone, and it's just me and my sisters . . . But I'll see her again someday. I know I will. And I know you don't believe that, and that's perfectly fine, bud - I respect that. But, you know, Everette, I don't believe in God's Kingdom or any of that bullshit either. But there is an essence in the human consciousness and it transcends and goes somewhere, ya know? It goes somewhere."

"Do you think you can do it?" the boy asked his father. He felt ashamed that his father might suspect him of asking this due only to selfish reasons, but he also knew damn well that his father had every right to suspect such a thing. But how could he ever tell his father that he was a man divided in two? How could he tell his father that he sometimes wished he never existed because of the two polar forces raging inside of him? How could ever appear so weak before the immaculately strong posture of his father?

"I don't know, bud. I think I can, but I might need your help."

Untitled #17

He’s the sweetest when we’re alone
Pretending like he understands
While sharing the burden of familiar melancholy

He has no desire to meet any of my family
The minimal sections he does know,
Only further proof
That we all just drift on by
Past the dainty dresses
In cracked department store windows

He starts to strum chords more frequently
As I occasionally drop subtle hints
About who he should be

I then close my eyes every time
I’m not smashed enough
To connect simplistic dots
With faded pencil lines

I swim around in the compliments
And hope for any kind of rebellion
An exchanged outburst
That both of us find
Some deeply-rooted sense of self
Or salvation from

But it becomes the same looks
And conversations
About those we think we know
Better than each other

I ignore the darkened ink on the door
Of the second bathroom stall
It wouldn’t make sense for me
To be that person

Not when all the telltale signs
Reiterate one pure message
I’ve got a good thing going,
Despite my heart’s complaints

- C.W.

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Untitled #16

They all still think that they know me
Believing her seasoned bullshit
As the ballots are recounted for the high court
I attend the festivities
Upon being forced into another supportive shell
For the cold audience members

It’s then that I think about him
Even though we haven’t spoken since
My nerves drunkenly leapt out of my mouth
Before I pressed it up against his
“You’re too young to know any better” was what I expected to hear
But instead he referred me to the toilet seat
As I had another conversation with the swirled abyss

The same story repeated itself
After the fire and the dance
The administrative problems
Before cheers of success
Rooted in the fickle
And lacking reality-soaked goggles

I’m not sure what kind of statue
I’m trying to be anymore
Numbing my expressions
And replying to advances in the same fashion

Until I see him
Except he’s distorted
And when the blurs finally do part
I know that it’s just petty imitation
On both sides of the line

I swallow the same true blue answers
And call this kind of denial a passing fad
At least until the next semester

- C.W.

some things

Friday, November 14, 2008

Static out of tune humming of the radio
Barren trees flying by
Lines blur
Headlights illuminating the way

Inertia has taken hold of me
Pulled this way and that
Gravity holds us here
When otherwise we might
Float up and away

Cars cruise by
Faces pressed against the window
Too many on their cell phones
Radio waves buzzing through the air
Children sleep
Mouths gaped open
Clinging to their favorite toy

Large trucks speed by
18 wheels
Too much cargo
They sleep in those trucks
The drivers
Spend days, weeks
Driving to fulfill our need
Not their own

We are all on the road to somewhere
Whether alone
Or in company
Laughing and singing
Or alone and thinking
We have a destination
Some place that warrants our time
Someone we cannot wait to see
A familiar home

It's been two hours in this back seat
Legs cramped
Restless hands

The lies are just flying by
And we anticipate arrival

Untitled #15

I become nauseous in the air

The overweight wife of the chilidog genius
Rambles on and on about the brochures
Tucked in the back of the seats

I can tell the flight attendent's tired
From fucking the pilot
Their cherry mouths, blood red
During our abrupt introduction

Then another car ride
This time on the opposite side
Before a few chosen individuals
With thick accents
Help me with the hand-me-down backpack
And point me in the direction of others
Supposidely more like myself

They know me better than I vaguely know them
Heads full of similar gray clouds
And false senses of inspiration

By the time I finally do settle on a crowd
They take my mind
And life away
Claiming it curves productivity

In retrospect,
I can see where the bastards were coming from
The further I slip and slide on double meanings
The easier it is for me to realize
That there is only one way out

The required themed essay in the fall
Is soaked in truths too jagged to stomach
Just like the plane ride

- C.W.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A woman from Japan cuts garlic in a man's kitchen.
She is not sure if the man loves her.
I watch the man's daughter.
She is holding a book of collected poems the father wrote when
he was much younger.
"Psychedelia, Love, and the Blues"
Opened to page 63, the daughter, and said,
"Dad, I didn't know you put this in here."
A poem called, "Love."
Daughter tells me, "When we were little, Steven, Dad and I recorded
this song. We didn't know what to sing about and dad said 'love,'
and we made up these words and kept singing them over and over."
She handed me the book.

"i know about love. some day it's gonna set me free. 11/95"

Father said,
"I've been tryin to remember the rest since that day. Ugh, I can't."

And son, standing up, being only 6 when this happened, could not remember.
He looked in the mirror, punched the air, and walked out the door.
Only 6. Father can't see it. Didn't see what the air did to him.

Untitled #14

I start to ignore him
Along with all the others
They probably thought it was some kind of adolescent phase
Young and depressed fits the description, sir

They decide to up my dosage
As I self-medicate following our weekly exchanges
Clear orange containers
Spread out
On cluttered dining room tables
Or anxiously shaking in vintage purses
Below the threshold of the girls' bathroom
Upon all our sorted entrances

The new friends I make
All start to look the same
As time passes,
And the stained sheets are crumbled into balls
Before being secretely thrown into the wash
Between 3:30 and 5:00 o'clock P.M.

She eventually finds out about the randomness
But keeps it to herself for awhile
Expecting the best
A new bright version of me
Upon my multiple returns home
To the guest room

By the time I finally say what I need to
I'm already gone for three months
And he's lost again
Buying flip-flops
And everyone else is sure they're doing the right thing

I lose the strength to convince them otherwise
We've always been seasoned pros
At denying honesty
For simplistic pleasures
And programmed escapes
Seats and tray tables
In place


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I wouldn't mind it if your grandfather's ghost woke me, because I know you loved him the most. No, I wouldn't be scared, with this soft aztec blanket wrapped around me.
I've never felt safer than now, in the middle of the night, in the middle of a mess of a living room, in the middle of nowhere (near railroad tracks).
The ticking of the zoloft clock doesn't bother me as much as i thought it would.
You don't know what this means. People miss the magnitude I feel all the time.
They can't see it, but it doesn't mean it's not there.
And where ya at? You should hear how pretty this song inside my head is.
There's gotta be a better reason to spill your guts than to get it off your chest.
There's gotta be a better reason than recognition.
Your mother said connection. She had long hair when you were in her belly.
Your father said you'd all stay on your homeland, even when the waters were rising. He said, "we'll die either way. we're facing death no matter what"
I was in the mountains watching you. I said I'd keep watch for the whole town,
but I went to pick berries on the other side, where the sun makes birds visit first.
When I came back, you were in the water. You were looking at me, half dead, you held your hand out and feigned mercy. I knew, but I grabbed your hand anyway.


Untitled #13

It gets cold fast
I start to jump around
Without any clear or logical sense of reality

My body is shipped to the front pew
Eye contact with the stain-glass virgin
While my sorted head waits for the next jolt
I'm not sure which is worse
The homeless shelter
Or the burn ward

Dad aplogizes on his one day off
My hands trying to frantically mask the smell of nicotine
From the upstairs bedroom that is barely mine anymore

We argue
As more mistakes I was forced to make
Come around full circle

I could strangle her
Or wait for a pre-meditated late night pillow suffacation
In any case
It would set us both straight again

Instead, I zone out in the back seat of the rented car
And look forward to my suburban prison
I knew then who would be waiting
And what we would all look like by midnight
Of the same old new age
Still timid
And glad to be back home

- C.W.

july 26th, 2005

that black slit is where your money goes in. i'm faced with it now. and a woman is walking stiffly. is she scared? do not make assumptions. my arm. the beautiful hum of the electricity in the air, boys in situations you like, dumb screen savers, desk carvings and ribbon being dropped over things. if i were to break open the glass to that fire hose what on this floor would i spray first? wet books. that's hot. the clock (fake) is eternally set on 7. one of the best things in the world is when your spine falls into place. writing letters is also. its charming when people say obvious things. i love desk drawings. penises and stars and initials plus initials, and general scrapings. people are funny. what people think should be written on desks is funny. for some reason, every patron i've talked to today has had some sort of accent. they sound so deliberate in their speech. perhaps cause i'm not used to it. but it's still quite nice. sometimes just listening is so calming. i wanna do that real bad right now. just listen to one voice. right before i left work for about 9 minutes i hid on the top floor and rested my head face down on this hard, wooden desk, and just smelled the wood. it smelled good. (like people's arms and wood). mostly people's arms. i love that smell.

everybody sees your blown apart

no room.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Untitled #12

Periodic visits soon downshift
To mailed checks every two weeks
I’m not sure what the definition of a favor is
Especially where family is concerned

The line becomes even scratchier
As I watch the responsibility shift

The festivities aren’t as thick
Their expressions,
Like rusted gears

I try to avoid the same old thoughts,
Figuring that if I was happier
Less mechanical
Maybe he will see the light flickering
Before it eventually burns out
From the only concerned side

Instead, I dissolve in the shelter
Eyes vacant
Hardly noticing the new arrivals
We trade round solutions interchangeably

Soon I clap with others
Take full advantage of the bar and catered buffet
Steal the metal key and plot my next move
For when the time is right
And my prescription makes her pass out early
As expected

Instead it’s clumps of white numbers on backs
More subsequent Monday morning stains
That I will most likely take the blame for

I tell myself it’s the last time I get sentimental
Over plans falling through
It’s that forward motion that must have carried over from the old man’s speeches
Even though I was too spaced to pay much attention

- C.W.

In an Airport

Dark sleep, but no rest. The kind where you feel suspended in the blackness and fastened to it with thick hides. Condition orange that day. I had never been in the airport when it wasn’t at least an Orange. But they had said it was raised. Raised from what? The insides of my brain felt hot as I started wandering down that plastic corridor lined with the crippling paranoia of ten thousand patrons too afraid to trust in anything. The knots in their guts had been tied and the propagated fear they feed us will never allow them to untangled. Always looking over our shoulders.
The paranoid serpent wanted to burst through my abdomen, but it settled on making its home within.
I don’t fly much. Hate it, actually. Despise the feeling of being at the complete mercy of a stranger. The seeds had planted themselves deeply. The thought of being confined in a tube 20,000 feet in the sky under the complete control of a man, a fallible human, strung out from being overworked, under rested and underpaid, who hated his job as much as everyone else hated their jobs, was fundamentally unsettling. The impending collapse that was now undeniably looming over all of our heads and houses and children and stuff kicked a lot of people into some strange frenzy. Instead of retreating, like originally forecasted, the sense of imminent doom stuck a hot stick up the collective ass of the masses. This fledgling pandemonium, no one was ready to admit to it yet. They weren’t running, but they were walking with stark purpose. Everyone was going everywhere all of the time, because most of them thought that it was going to be the last time that they were able to go there, wherever it was that they were going. The age of shutting the eyes to make it go away had long since passed. And from this frenzy was born a sense of desperation that was so infectious, and so encompassing, that the sense itself was and is the main component that makes my life possible in this instant. More heads are turned now than ever before. When a man is gripped by a fundamental realization that the countdown has started, you see if he really cares if you take that sandwich from the display case without paying. People don’t chase when the agendas in their Blackberries don't tell them they should.
I am a man who cloaks himself quite often; most times successfully, others not quite. It was those times that landed me on my own, and it is those times that kept me alone. When they occur, I am humbled and lay curses to all matter that makes me. Being alone has never bothered me, though, mostly because somewhere along the line I had convinced myself that I was actually grateful to not have to be concerned with them, whoever them was at the time. Them. You know them. The lack of this control really ate at me, from the inside out, like ants in a marshmallow. Made me feel hot all over. I sat in the faded grey seat, fidgeting, groping, fixing the parts of my body into some kind of comfortable order. Comfort was a word rarely used anymore. Few people in the airport, and even fewer in queue for my flight. For that I was thankful and I focused my energy on that little nugget of positivity for as long as I could. I wouldn’t have to interact with too many people for a little longer. It was still early, though, and people weren’t early anymore, either. They would come and they would come with much loud. I unclenched a little bit, focus drifted from me. I forgot where the destination was. What city? To where am I making my escape? I chomped hard on the precautionary gum in my mouth, could feel my teeth between it, gnashing together like paperweights. I looked down at the ticket crunched up in my hand. It was wet from my perspiration. I can't read. Nothing is of any interest to me. More hub-bub bustling noise. More things. Gadgetry. Technology. Kaczynski was right. Fuck it. All of the noise. Fuck all of it. Nothing anywhere that I wanted. Or maybe this was the one.
The one to propel me, somewhere else entirely. I was running, maybe I would be going somewhere. Slowly, a mental picture came into focus in my mind, a fog lifted and I saw a buoy bobbing cathartically in a gentle sea. The delicate twanging of a sea bell; a warning? Maybe this was that flight. The flight out. Probably not. Probably not not not not. I thought my gums were bleeding because I was chewing so hard on that fucking gum. Why so much discomfort? What was it? What toxin was I submerged in? I thought about the plane, about my ears cracking like plastic bubbles at every fluctuation in altitude and pressure. I hated flying as much as I hated casual conversation. They all looked miserable. All looked afraid. People walking past, dragging luggage, children, behind them. The wheels squeaking as they rolled over the cracks in the tile floors. Dull drone of atonal music piped out over the Styrofoam speakers. Why even bother to do that anymore? A lost child announcement. A found child announcement. A lost luggage announcement. A found luggage announcement. A safety warning. A safety warning. A safety warning. A safety warning. I took off my hat and ran my hand over my head. Hair closely cropped to my skull, nothing to grab onto. Feels like tree moss, I thought.
I was on the verge of vomiting. This was not like waiting for the other flights. I felt the lack of some specific something. A void inside. A void outside of me. My organs tangled themselves. My eyes swelled. It hurt to close them, but looking at the passing people was equally displeasurable. It was a distinct feeling. It had happened before. More than once. I knew that today was going to be a bad day. Just like those other days.
February 15th, 2009, we'll all be dead soon after that. The last day of analog television broadcasting. No longer would physical signals be aired ever again. Entering the age of complete digital broadcasting. Digital was such a buzzword. Since the inception of television in the late 1920’s, and radio before that, there were waves. The information was coded, broken down into microbits, and sent out over the vast land. Coated it in heaves. It's piled up, constantly dusted away by new waves. Now, no more waves. No more anything. No more buzz through our bodies. How could that happen? We are all going to start puking and its not gonna stop.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Untitled #11

Another spare bedroom
Re-worked to better suit the status quo
Ground rules set, pinned to the wall
Next to the complimentary church calendar
Marked specifically with my arrival date

I meticulously poke holes in the system
Before we re-meet each other
Our heads,
Better and worse
And full of more bumblebees

Then she calls you with plans
And our soft and groggy introduction
Is a nail,
Driven deeply into my already dormant body

It becomes all the more uneven in the hallways
I pass new stares without flinching
He is sympathetic, charming and advertised as unavailable
So I drift again and wait for him to interrupt
Like family should
Even if it is through a business union

It takes longer than I expected
I have to paint my face
And cheer on the hometeam
Before finally the negative pulls me under the bleachers

I bite my tongue and patiently wait
The living rooms will eventually run together
Like our cleaned plates,
Resting in the overflowing kitchen sink
Leftover from Sunday brunch

- C.W.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Could I possibly pin these pieces down? They're flyin too fast past our faces.
We're just standing, like virgins, on the sidewalk, facing traffic.
We'll look 'em right in the eyes, those kids who drive too fast.
They're making us lose our letters that we wrote on leaves we collected
last sunny day. We don't know about their ways. They move too quickly for us.
They show parts to eachother and compare and degrade. They are in the market.
They ask us what we've got for sale. "Uhh, nothing," we reply, arms folded
over our bare chests, feeling like we might want to show them.
We don't, though. We just keep watching, covering our eyes when it's just
too much to bear.

- - -

Untitled #10

Their cherished offspring arrives a week early
Babbling in jagged tongues
About all the enchanting messes
I missed out on

The rest lean over the table
Shoulders eager to hear more glossed lies
On what they feel vicariously hollow without

My eye rolling continues the whole way upstairs
Her claiming my bedroom and rooftop space
Calling it seniority

I am soon across the hallway
Ignoring their tender arguments through the ancient heating vents
There are infinite possibilities for the upcoming holiday
Until her centered resume receives another check mark

I try to focus on comprehending the sentences
Stuck inside
Ears plugged
The rain far from relenting
In-between load times, I hear the propeller in her throat
Spin in a counterclockwise motion

Then the invasion of halter tops
Red, white ad blue printed icons
Wanderers ignoring the pile of shoes from leftover from the early arrivals
They bring with them plastic bags and mirrors
Half-fogged from pierced noses

I sit,
Arms cross
Occasionally flirting
While claiming that all their IVY League futures
Are monetarily predetermined
Sis takes my opinions as a threat

Around four A.M. the blame is placed
In-between my dirty halo and head
The shaking knees and convulsions on the bathroom floor
Are my next ticket to more deeply rooted grudges
Soon, I will be the book definition of a hot potato


Saturday, November 8, 2008


fuck what you need. fuck what i need.
fuck what it takes to get there.
fuck them taking from us and fuck us for taking from them.
we're alone, with our pockets full, and alone with them empty.
fuck necessities.
fuck ownership.
but, oh, how we love to gain, and hate to lose.

Friday, November 7, 2008

For my Physicist

It seems like just yesterday, last fall, our last year together.
I remember you clothed in good humor and the scent of Coors-light. It was late evening and the sun began to lower in the sky as if saying "Goodnight, I've had far to much for one day". You were smoking a cigar. You were always smoking cigars in the evening, Romeo Y Julieta and I preferred them to the smell of Autumn.
We sat in silence listening to the sound of the passing train and I knew then that you wouldn't be of this earth much longer. My mind accepted what my heart could not bear.
As we sat in silence I studied you like a pedant. I wanted to remember every detail of your worn face. I tried to memorize you, every hair, every wrinkle. Your eyebrows were taking over your eyes, a familiar characteristic of aging men. I smiled to myself thinking I had never seen you any other way, and I loved the wiry, sporadic gray hairs that seemed to be trying to escape the rest. Your eyebrows reflected the shape of mine, and I was amused by the thought of such caterpillars above my own eyes.
"It's such a beautiful night", you said and broke through our comfortable silence.
"Yes" I replied
And just then you drew your head back and closed your eyes, inhaling, as if taking the season in full for the last time. You exhaled with pleasurable force and smiled, looking as if you had just been granted entrance into the kingdom of heaven.
"I wish it could be Fall all year round", I began, "It is the perfect season. The color, the scent, the apple cider! Can you imagine if it were like this all the time?" I asked
"Fall certainly does have a feeling of nostalgia, but I'm sure we would grow weary of it's decay." you replied
"I suppose" I said
I wondered quietly if your response to this season, and the thought of enduring it for more than a few short months, had anything to do with your knowledge of your illness and the desire to see the seasons change once more.

"It's getting chilly, here, take my sweater" you said
As I wrapped myself in your sweater I laughed as I studied the print and said "Grandpa, this sweater is hideous, it looks like it is from the 80's!"
You chuckled and replied "It may be well out of fashion, but it has never failed to keep me warm."
I smiled, thinking that was just something you would say.

Autumn made way for Winter's frost. The air became cold and damp and your days became a battle against time.
I was with you the night before you died, do you remember?
I told you I loved you, and that you were a great man. You sat upright in your home hospital bed and told me that you wanted me to have your patent plaque from PPG. You were the smartest man I ever knew, and the kindest. I don't think you will ever know what that plaque means to me. I know nothing of physics, or optics, but I know of your love and what love means.

Autumn is still my favorite season, and I still sit outside and read, just like we used to do. One thing has changed though, now I willfully wrap myself up in that old, ugly sweater.

Untitled #9

They say we look alike
And that we have since we were
Dressed by their worn hands

I've lost the ability to see colors
Like their red blush
And blue soul-less expressions
As they pull me in
Again and again

The resemblances soon dissolve
As I tip my head under the faucet
And strain out the ink from my veins

I then spend my afternoons sitting
In sand
Smiling at the runners
Actively breathing in salt
They change from week to week
While I catch up on assigned work

At night,
I leisurely hide in the basement
Or on the small,
Single square
Outside my guestroom window
Inhaling smoke and watching the crystals blink
On the surface

The steady sound continuing to swell in my chest
A standard pulse across the other levels
Carved from over-priced materials
Found buried beneath each mound
Close to the cracked remains of seeds
Sprouted and forgotten

I relate until she rings the tacky front porch dinner bell
Explained to me as a necessary purchase
We all need to know what time is coming

- C.W.


Turning on the Christmas lights and getting a “hell yeah.” I thought of how I’ve always felt like the crazies on the block…on any block…just when you think you’re getting too conventional.
That dude driving by and yelling”CHRISTMAS IS OVER.”
HEADPHONES that soundwaves cancel out eachother so it’s totally quiet. The doldrums. All of this happened in a period of two hours. Connections. “They were the coolest in Elementary. I had a pair. They were so big!” He said all of this laughing, not even trying to hide how much he loves to remember things. “Did you know that they make these headphones now, that read the sound wave coming from outside of the headphones, and then sends that sound wave into your ears at the same frequency, so the sound is canceled out and the space between your ears and the headphones is seemingly silent.
Walking out onto the front porch. The wind was blowing the leaves around. On the light red clay bricks. There was this little seat, made out of bricks…a perfect cube, just built into the corner of the stairwell. Leaves would always get stuck there…but not this day…the wind was blowing them out and around and I was so excited that I jumped off the porch and ran to the trees who once told me I could change things if I wanted to. In the front yard. The tall trees all in a circle. I never knew if it was by accident: the circle…if the trees were planted, or if they were once a forest…and if there were once a forest, did someone cut a bunch of trees around them, or did all the rest die, only leaving the circle?
“We could make a map.” His grin was too large and I wondered how long it took him to dig out all the places he dug out inside of himself. Something, it might have been his kindness, was passing slowly out of his teeth, like fresh, new air, that altogether changes an atmosphere, and I could only look for two seconds. I hid my helpless smile with a cup of beer.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Surplus Merchandise

Ollies is the fucking weirdest place to shop. Phone camera, I know, but what a weird place!