these marks won’t go away

place on the door
a wall of wings
a tangle of a straightening
a siege a head a butchered bow
wherever Sundays need to go
a walking through
a rear window
to something clanged
of something clipped
of something clamped
to something dipped
a gurgling
til something stopped
the gold work hand
the silver chopped

down the door
and through
the hatch
the least failed light
last closest match
lasts even longer
when you scratch
these marks won’t go away

so all my healers,
aren’t you proud
these marks won’t go away

This isn’t a form of sleep

This isn’t a form of sleep
not a when white was bright hits right kind of day
or a brightened saw shrugged sore
when our arms parted ways with our shoulders
we left them there on the floor

now I burn my dull drawer
how I burn my dull drawer

I cull draws by lamplight
in night fits by dull caws
and the reds burn so raw they roar

a sad tableaux of low repose
where hope is a brittle dried rose -
but what is it you’re standing for
all men
night inspections
wages and hours
waiting at an open door

always on the cusp of arriving at an imaginative spaniel

an imaginative spaniel
always on the cusp of arriving at
anvil footstep
from the
the retches of this
long after even the
have faded
as engraver and imitation
have faded
long after even the
the retches of this
from the
anvil footstep
always on the cusp of arriving at
an imaginative spaniel

It’s Not the Size of the Wand

It’s not the size of the wand,
it’s whether what the wand is being used against
is impervious to magic.

It’s not the length of the journey
it’s the miles on the tires,
the knocks under the hood,
the multiple warning lights on.

It’s not the sharpness of the curve,
it’s what’s waiting behind the bend.

It’s not the thickness of the fog,
it’s what the fog is hiding.

It’s not being late to the party,
it’s acting as if the party was a funeral.

It’s not whether the door is locked,
it’s whether you are inside of a house.

It’s not the ear against the door,
it’s the mouth inside the room.

It’s not the puncture,
it’s the prick with a pin

It’s not the gun,
it’s the ammunition
and its velocity upon impact.

It’s not the going in reverse,
it’s the stuck in neutral.

It’s not the treading water,
it’s never reaching the sea.

It’s not the void,
it’s what fills the void.

It’s not the rain,
it’s what you’re made of.

It’s not the steepness of the climb,
it’s the lack of oxygen.

It’s not how you run the race,
it’s whether you’re in the right race.

It’s not how fast the wheel turns,
it’s whether the wheel has hit the road.

It’s not the weight on your back,
it’s the 90% blockage in your heart.

It’s not the waiting,
it’s what the end of waiting implies.

It’s not the good night’s sleep,
it’s where you are sleeping
and the things you had to do
to be get there.

It’s not passing judgment,
it’s judging passing.

It’s not what has been done,
it’s the remembering.

what brush have you brought

what brush have you brought
orange, tangerine
I rinse my hair
with Listerine

I rind my hours
with mattress sores
my star spurs twinkle
just like snores

I orange my eyes
to see through my mouth
the teeth I am missing
I blame on the moths

once I became (b)light
burned dull apathy
patient in the gallows
of air therapy

I dream in the shallows
of my lungs’ draughts
with nothing to show –
a handful of aughts

if I only had staples…
if I was raised in The Maples…
now all that is left of my head
fits neatly on this bed

so what brush have you brought
orange, tangerine
don’t matter the size
just that it’s clean

there’s no smoking gun, but I’m shot

when the sick is sunk
when the suck is soft
when you’re licked and the lift
and the luck is lost
when the sins sink in
when the slink ain’t slick
when low light’s left
little’s long to list
our troubles shout
our travails trick trots
our rickshaw’s wheels
sawed off and rot
oh, there’s no smoking gun,
but I’m shot, I’m shot
no, there’s not smoking gun
but I’m shot

if runs along the railway line

if a dimension greater
if the tides roll further
if fields and other waste
if the leaf shape existing on
if electric wires combine
if organized by transparent gray
if on opposite ends of the runway
if testing glass
if equally visually
if light-dependent
if infections common to burns
if gentle along the rough branch
if the runway ends
if printed through the depth of the slab
if attributed to an iridescent Tempest
if air flows suiting
if leaving only the encircling
if in grackles dream
if the shallow places provide ideally lustre
if honey bees are secured into a small harness made from a piece of drinking straw
if every rock sustained, so likely to have been carried
if encrusted and dried every few seconds
if no less effective
if dams and floodwalls have been erected along the river
if diving air masks logbook memory
if the body is hard
if in a tandem knot
if high definition weather and its tributaries to the smaller range mantles
if at depths between
if by fitting around
if now a new for any given
if the latter width, but wider
if lapsing sunlit
if fire yellows
if map and model
if like a water lily
if runs along the railway line

partial index

Mrs. (smaller maladies rippling) (ripping)
the closure (to gain access)
the colloquium (of elks which lift-off)
the contortion (of we should automatically fail) (without waiting or asking again)
the steps (expanding space) (from an elevating work) (vaulted)
three (pools) (who would)
undeniably (fabulous) (formidable) (showering)
what (outsiders fail to appreciate) (we become attached to)
what we became (attached to the ocean) (has become)
where (from the back of) (they are long gone)

The Guiding Principles for the Care and Use of Purposes

The Guiding Principles for the Care and Use of Purposes
shall be read together to form the
Principles offer
d in the care
of Institution’s
Investigators, Staff and other persons
involved in the current use
d and relevant laws
to self-regulate and
pain perception
chronic response
as observable
acts of inducing
whatever name called
body or person
by deliberately
varying degrees of severity
or series of related
consideration by
demonstration of knowledge
for the purposes of teaching
used to reduce
indigenous or otherwise
matters to be considered
due consideration
weighed against the potential
effects on the
precision stricken
protected by a
dependent on the length of time
in an aesthetically intriguing
variety of appearances
among those that chew
beyond edibility
and threaten
shorebound surf beginners
in scattered locations
throughout Southcentral Alaska
in a deeply flawed system
of strange anomalies
in degrees of
so very clear
related questions
of these reminders
being absorbed and used
in simplicity
reunited inadvertently.

take a pack of wolves

take two nights
and call it a single dark morning

take two halos
bend them a little
add a touch of red paint
and lies
and they become horns

take a haven’t got a clue
and give it a mystery to solve
and a big reward at the end
and you’ll have a warehouse
of false leads gathering dust

take a good idea
to fast around the curve
and autopsy will show
that it was a bad idea after all

take an list of excuses
for what could go wrong
reverse them
and you have either the true possibilities
or false optimism

take a plan to stop
and keep going
and see what happens
and if you can’t stop going
stick to the original plan

take a beautiful dive into
an empty pool
and no one will remember
the graceful perfection of the dive

take a pack of wolves
and ask them to guard the sheep
and there’s no oath in the world
that can guarantee you won’t
have a pile of bones by morning


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