Thursday, January 23, 2014


Coriolanus' Farewell

In the dawning hour I woke cradled in the arms of a Parisian twink
who glowered exigently into my face and said, “Ariel Sharon est mort.”
It did not feel like anything, the world dreaming and devouring itself
curling like Marlboro smoke into the stale wallpaper, the shepherds bent
down in their pastures, everybody looked the same closed in investment.
I've already quit all that, it happens without me, and I'll take my dearest leave
the tanks roar like warthogs in the distance, the drones buzz but as cicadas
in spring, this is how the story has always gone, adieu to my mother and
friends; it can be blamed on me accordingly, it can never be destroyed.
We have murdered each other while our children watched on, that is why I
was born, tall and bumptious hearts feasting on the sick blood of history
and I tried, and I held this awesome boy, but you wouldn't keep me there.
Every pestilence has landed upon our naked heads, and I am heading out
I go alone into the recesses of my own war, making a solace of my hazards.
More than seen, my wicked swamp is feared—like that of the lonely dragon.

Going Back for the Cat

Januaries rattle round my life like loose teeth in a skull
those begotten, forgotten, forgiven, betrayed, and allayed
there is one more thing that the devil failed to say:
I am not like you, I'm not staying on the ship, I am
going back for the cat. All idiot illusion, kneeling there
by the bed, you can present forever (but you can't).
I'm not surprised, not surprised, not surprised—wish
you would have thought of me sooner, Damocles eschewed
we swallow the sword, the string, and the thought of death.
Just to take it in the dunes, just to tell me, be obvious
how lucky to even have, how damned, how shaped in front
waggish crossings and small braids, defend the hopeful
kingdom, drive over the jinxed girl and smear her father.
Yes, there is beauty, I collect it in my greedy lungs
my hair is suffused with it, my spine is quaking from it
I don't know how I am going to get out of it, lest I burst
into atoms and pleasure—let's just leave it at all of that.
There is no repeating, disappear into the small trails
of the board of the lost and the years, guiltiness whores
itself into a sheath of warlike aspiration. Some new day
some sky, sometimes being complete with what is left.
I'm going to carry this without, until, and through love
go back, get out, stand in, outdoor, cruise, stare, prepare
it is all gone, then we shall see what, truly, trophies want.

Small Poem for Aaron Swartz

The ringing blades of winter pass
along the torrents and channels
of lengthy optimism
yielding but their own sound
power enough to set about
barbering the trunk of mercy
the stubble along the jawline of
the suicided boy he didn't want
to go to jail
we enfranchise the information
for its true popular privilege
it's still not flowering just drunk
for a peace we'll be put under
descry a body without the brain
where and when we disenthrall
radiance from what threshold
darkness from what desire
this mered observance
takes as we inhale
set icky warp
once more
try again
see it.

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