Thursday, December 31, 2009
in numerically based grids to satisfy
a psychological urge only to realize
that things are often squares, and so am I,
and I create nothing but squares, squares
in my home and where my parents live.
I was raised on the square! I thrive
on the glowing rectangular frontier!
But the planet is a sphere. Gravity
rained knives on each side of my square,
collapsing the edges, ripping, tearing
it into nameless, shapeless entities
and then into a circle, the perfect thing.
I need to know God, madness, everything.
Thursday, December 17, 2009
cassette tapes and twisted rabbit ears.
The people had more knowledge than sense,
and commercials could incite riots.
I guess things aren't any better now.
Our cars still have tires,
and jetpacks were outlawed a century ago.
to come in a pill or powder.
We quit war, but that took the fun
out of football and professional wrestling,
and we grabbed our guns and invaded Mexico.
Religion finally gave up, then it massacred nations,
then gave up again. We made it illegal
Then again, cigarettes are illegal too,
but they're not going to smoke themselves,
though we have robots that can do that for us.
But, in those days, robots danced endlessly
in front of monster-truck dealerships.
The language was a series of clicks
bouncing off monstrous satellites in space.
Friday, December 4, 2009
So I read some stuff. So did Jeremy Bauer and Shaun Gannon.
I won these books:
Jeremy and Shaun won some books too. Here's the stuff that I read:
BEER. WINE. FOOD. Three words in fifty-six point Helvetica on the window of a bar that hangs on the corner of unremarkable downtown streets, flashing a neon red OPEN from three to three most of the week. Tonight, a Tuesday, begins after three hours of a fast-food job and an endless five minutes attempting to knock some sense into a group of English undergraduates. I’m three beers to one over Annie, my hands gesturing in schizophrenic waves, ranting about a Buddhism-drenched poem that, artistically, is surely equal to Blonde on Blonde and far better than everything after the Joshua Tree.
My antics start a fire in my belly making the alcohol crawl up my spine, and there’s a college football game on the television above the fake fireplace, and Annie manages to make sense of all this for five minutes while I talk myself crazy and she’s on just that one beer. She’s got resolve, and I’m not exactly sure what that means but I have a notion, and Annie gets my notions. And a great smile. But not too often – it must be earned. That’s nice. Because I don’t have resolve. I need the challenge to prove to myself that I am myself and that proves I am: challenging.
Crowd noise flares up from the television. Tulane is playing a team in awful maroon jerseys. Annie’s wearing a yellow hat and sweatshirt under a leather jacket adorned with what could be entirely fake zippers, that is to say real zippers without pockets. It’s the kind of fashion statement that might say “I can carry a lot of shit in my giant purse” or “I want to annoy you by pretending to be a DJ, aren’t I hilarious?” She glances into her beer and then at the television during the few moments I’m not exasperating. I breathe, and keep going:
“Listen, Annie, I know you haven’t read it but I wish you could, you’d see how the poem gets hectic as you creep down the page, how the couplets collapse on each other like punctured lungs, the whole time making noise on the page by colliding consonants over and over again like linebackers. I mean, I resent anyone who does not like this poem. I would be horrified to learn that someone who hates this poem holds any major public office. Revolution will come and those who do not love this poem will grease the wheels of poetic justice with their blood.”
Annie and I take our longest gulps of the night. Tulane is down by three points.
“Sounds like a pretty fuckin’ cool poem”
-and I almost do a spit take down Annie’s leather jacket
“Yeah Annie, it’s pretty fuckin’ cool poem.”
The bartender swoops and grabs our empty mugs with her thumb and middle finger. “You want another beer, Ryan?" she asks.
Now, I’ve been asked this question three times tonight and at least three hundred times since this bar opened only four months ago. My answer is always casual, predictable, full of appreciation and always accompanied by a modest tip that reflects my current socio-economic status and total lack of fiscal responsibility. I look at Annie.
“Do you want another beer?”
She nods. “No. You can have one if you want.”
It takes seven to ten seconds for me to make a decision. Annie and the bartender wait in fantastic anticipation.
“I’ll just close out my tab, Miles”
I end my Tuesday night on 36 ounces of beer and five mozzarella sticks. Six dollars. Two-dollar tip. Tulane kicks a field-goal from forty yards out but wind knocks it wide left. The ugly maroon bastards win. Can’t win ‘em all, Tulane. I never could play football. Too small, too smart to get tackled endlessly for no reason. I wave goodbye to Jesse, the heavily tattooed cook and nod to guy who’s name I’m pretty sure is Bill and walk with Annie out the door.
“Do you know where Tulane is?”
She pauses, grinning “I have no clue. Alabama?”
My right hand finds the small of her back and she presses her face against my shoulder to shield herself from the cold, bending her knees slightly to come down to my level.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
and that what makes it so impressive.
I think of how, as a toddler,
I would scrape my knees, flailing
with other brats inside polyurethane tubes
covered in yellow,
blue, and lime-green
It's that kind of recklessness
that powers this naked machine,
an endless series of tubes.
And I learned from this.
Not just how to crawl
on my hands and knees,
but to elbow my way up
just to slide for the exit after
wading through a ball-pit. And now,
I can type the word "polyurethane"
with my left hand
and masturbate with my right,
simultaneously, with gusto.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
I grow a finger
For every cough you suppress,
my mother sends a keychain
For every puddle you jump,
Jeremy gives me a cigarette
For every cigarette you lend,
you give it to me
For all of your cancer,
my lungs turn to crystal
For every hospital you've bombed,
I sleep easier at night
For every doctor you've punched,
my body fights off infection
For all of your fears,
I trade my fears.
When you are dying,
I am still dying.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
the referee has been impaled.
Half the audience is dead.
The other half is deaf.
Television throws a right hook
of evangelism. Internet counters
with a photo of a kitten wearing
a watermelon. The audience
screams and screams about
this media-fuled massacre.
Television goes below the belt
with Elvis Presley's legs,
Internet strikes back with
fourteen lesbians in a monster truck.
Right hook, haymaker, uppercut
pornography, illiteracy, Coldplay.
The fight lasts fifteen rounds,
unanimously decided by both fighters
to be a draw. They are both champions.
The deaf half hears none of this.
The other half hears none of this.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Saturday, October 10, 2009
feels like other things do. Here's a list:
good break-ups, fruit roll-ups, toilet paper
music, fucking, drugs, computers, words.
It's hard not to laugh though because
it's funny and it feels rewarding. Flush
Thursday, October 1, 2009
the couple holds plastic sacks from the grocer downtown.
I've been strutting the sidewalk, moving fast, trying
to kill time. And there they are, bouncing from right foot
to left, shifting the mass of their hips, those spare tires
made only for a semi-truck on a long, long road.
The plastic strips for handles must be digging
into the potato-dense fingers of the husband while
the wife carries only two, both on her right hand.
The walk continues for blocks, the struggle
protruding a foot from their bellies, those bellies!
I look down at my feet and jump a dying puddle
while the wife's trapeze act shadows her husband.
We are directly across from each other, a sign
framing the horizontal space between us.
They pause at the curb where water laps
upward towards the sidewalk. He steps,
into the refuse, dampening his sweatpants
and reaches a busy hand, motioning her across.
She steps far enough to make a small splash
with the heel of her flip-flop. Down the street
their see-saw bodies wave goodbye.
I walk a straight line to Savages, counting
the calories I saved watching them dance.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
and shove a sword
into my stomach
via my gaping mouth.
The sword moves south.
I am still bored,
I am yawning
at all this beauty
and sex and cable television.
I'll take a nap
hoping to wake up
and feel better,
finding out everyone is dead
and I am dead, and nothing
has to change.
Oh, the sword.
It's a metaphor.
If I could swallow swords,
I wouldn't be writing poetry.
That's for goddamn sure.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Sunday, September 13, 2009
two Stephen Hawkings and a Bill Gates
black hole sun
hundreds of aquaintance-level relationships
all of your ex-lovers
The Indianapolis Colts
eight-track tape of "Jungle Boogie" by Kool and the Gang
mouse (right click)
instruction booklets from Ikea furniture
64 count Crayola (for texture)
Nintendos (a ton of 'em)
The Internet (for texture)
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
I: YOU'VE GOT MAIL
I: CLICK HERE
R: That did nothing! Is this cartoon porn?
I: CHOCOLATE RAIN
R: (disgusted) I see that.
I: SHAUN GANNON HAS COMMENTED ON YOUR STATUS
I: DAN BAILEY HAS CHANGED HIS INTERESTS TO "BOMBFUCKING"
I: YOU'VE WON A FREE iPOD
R: I'm not falling for that shit.
I: COME ON
R: Are you a sentient being?
R: I'm going to blow up my computer
I: YOU'VE GOT MAIL
Monday, September 7, 2009
My pride swelled to the sound of clicks and whistles.
And then I searched 'clicks and whistles', and discovered
that computers beep and boop, more or less.
Then I learned things from the internet.
I learned how to build the Internet
I discovered infinity plus one.
I found out my sister is having a boy,
and he will be named after the Internet.
All of these things are true, and you
can read about them on the Internet.
Next I ravaged the Internet for sex,
and discovered none worth having.
I assume this is why pornography exists,
although there are infinity plus one reasons
to pretend that sex isn't hilarious.
I bought a computer off the Internet,
and the Internet thinks I'm very clever.
The Internet indulges my vanity.
It is a room full of mirrors.
It is a grocery store full of naked people.
No one is embarrassed to buy bananas
in the virtual reflective sex-market.
If the Internet didn't exist,
it would be necessary to invent it.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
This is no trick of photography.
I've been so busy I'm blurry.
That's Jeremy Bauer right there.
He's playing a handsaw with a bow.
Yes, it's as cool as it sounds.
Click here to hear the band we are in.
Anyway, back to how blurrily busy I've been.
Too busy to write
Too busy to fill out paperwork.
Too busy to be rich.
Too busy to smoke cigarettes,
but much busier to quit.
Too busy to freestyle rap.
Too busy to stretch my hamstrings.
Too busy for sobriety.
Too busy to read good books.
Too busy to have emotions
except anxiety and restlessness.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
I'll set myself aside in a corner
(Perhaps Florida, Probably Oregon).
There I'll weave a new history
that stands up against any scrutiny.
Against the gaze of bitter old friends
or the sheer miles that lay between them.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
The Internet does not know that the BP in Muncie is owned by (possibly) Persian businessman.
The Internet screams for racism.
The Internet needs a weatherman, a weather balloon, and a wet thumb to know which way the wind blows.
The Internet alliterates.
The Internet does not give a shit about anyone while simultaneously providing all the shit we care about. The Internet finds this hilarious. I do not.
The Internet twitters all the time. I only twitter on crystal meth.
The Internet makes me feel old and I am only twenty-one, someone buy me a drink.
The Internet is responsible for twenty-five percent of my sexual encounters.
The Internet has a website behind your forehead.
The Internet LMFAO
The Internet is the opposite of Bob Dylan
The Internet is not alive except NOW NOW NOW NOW
The Internet has never offered me a handshake. Get to it.
The Internet cannot read.
The Internet 56k modem bzzzzzz
The Internet has a motherboard and no fatherboard. The Internet is a bastard. Long live the Internet.
The Internet is only twenty-one years old.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Saturday, May 23, 2009
there are bridges everywhere
gaps have to be breached
rivers must be crossed
point a to b
san francisco to brooklyn
we're going places, america!
and bridges are, well,
the bridges to the future
the metaphor is solid
the metaphor is sturdy, like oak.
but there are bridges that sway
in the wind. iron ropes stretched
from trees. the river flows beneath.
why jump the creek
when a plywood slab
rests its ends on both sides?
strut across, live the dream!
bridge the gap, or gap the bridge!
when you get to wherever it is you're going
the future has happened,
and you are in it.
turn around. see where you've been.
there it is! there it was!
and now it's done. the creek
has already forgotten.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Monday, March 9, 2009
Sunday, March 8, 2009
Friday, February 20, 2009
inside, where muscles
are, the place amino acids
dissolve, how reflexes
happen, verbs of action
or something like sleeping.
Two children stare
at each other with their
eyes and their mouths
are showing rows of
connected white lights.
Not moving eyes or lids,
it happens, the clean
noise, a tree cracking,
or axes landing straight blows.
Although it usually ends
like a rubber chicken clapping
when their palms fail
to meet and then, strike
Friday, February 13, 2009
They build, we build
out of straw, stone, and soon
plastic and space metals.
They thrive, we live on
the backs of women, then
of slaves, and now for
wage slavery. They fight,
we war for meager crops
and hollowed-out, crusted
loaves of hard bread. Still,
their pain is our pain, the
opposition, the others,
those with better grass
and short brick fences, those
with rifles and we with arrows
or knives, those with clean
water or those in drought,
the sun burning their faces
lined with years of squinting,
staring into the distance.
The fields are level, but saying this
to a man born on a mountain
and one born in those fields, well...
Can anyone say the man from
the lowlands can't feel the
earth beneath his bare feet, and
know that it moves without him?
Monday, February 9, 2009
Sometimes they shove
their elbows into each other’s
soft, trendy kidneys and bend
their knees in pointless, unnatural
ways. This is called dancing,
a constitutionally protected
form of ‘acting out’. This happens
on nights when the moon casts
identity aside and embraces the
orange of the sleeping sun.
Sometimes they can see
themselves-- in the bottom backwash
of cheap painted tin cans, or when
bouncing past clean store windows.
Willfully abusing their insides for the sake
of tradition, white people will
always die, and when they do
their remains are secured in a
plain ceramic tomb, always
to be turned on its side and
rapped on the base, forcing
the fog of ash to catch a
flurry of cool wind, lowering
them to the waves crashing into
crooked coasts of crystal sand.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
The ladies in velvet seats are weeping,
a lump between each lung from
a glass shattering high B-flat that
reaches them like a butcher would
claw for a sharpened blade.
He remembers the milk-bath; his mother's breath,
the last woman to clutch the nape of his neck;
blood bubbles from the empty wound
curdling in orange at his throat.
One thousand hands
collide and separate; applause.
A thousand crying eyes, in pairs.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The proper channels:
Channel seven will show death from enough perspectives that everyone who watches it will find something to relate to. And then they, also, will die.
Channel four will be reserved for my ex-girlfriends. Women will love this show. Men will not understand. I will watch it on Sunday's clean my dirty laundry.
Channel twenty-four will be neverending blackness. This represents all of television. No one will get it. That represents everyone except the self.
* * * * * * * * * * * * *
The thing I hate most about television is that it entirely dictates decorating procedures, forcing everyone in their room to have their backs facing the same wall that reflects the blue-white glow of the black box in front of them.
* * * * * * * * * * * * *
I love my friends.
Monday, January 19, 2009
1. Putting acoustic guitars in photographs do not add any artistic credibility
2. Barack Obama will win?! No fucking way!
3. I am slowly falling into patters of abuse
4. There's better sex out there, just waiting for you to find it.
5. Somebody will really hate me, and yes, it will be my fault.
6. Women are not right 100% of the time; it hovers in the mid-eighties.
7. I will be seventeen years old for a very long time.
Saturday, January 17, 2009
This is just good advice, really. Pretty girls will sometime draw pictures of you that are great, and you will think the craziest thoughts about them. LoL.
Friday, January 16, 2009
was snatched by the throat
for yelping at bigger dogs. This
dog was too much of a dog
to take any more of that shit.
The puppy corpse belonged
to me, a child. The dog of dogs
set it at my feet, paws moving
like a blade of grass above
barely breathing lips, which is
not enough movement to keep
any kind of hope for resucitation.
I never tried to replace it with
another little white dog, I didn't
do anything about it except
watch it happen, and then walk
inside for a glass of water. Such
is the nature of dogs, or so I figured.
The water was soothing, I was
thankful for such a warm day.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
you're a book that I've written
birdhouse has ten poems and is
wonderfully put together thanks
to the help of my new-ish friend
Johanna Ofner. She's great! And
the book isn't half-bad. I've read
it cover to cover at least twice.
You should really consider buying
a copy at a poetry reading that
takes place tomorrow evening,
Wednesday, January 7th.
Place: MoTini's (Muncie)
It's only two dollars!! Wow!!