Daily Archives: March 19, 2014

Dead Horse

dead horse
start digging

it isn’t going to hurt you
start digging

dead horse
it’s not a game
it can’t be won

dead horse
start digging

put the whip away
the club away
stop shouting
start digging 

it’s going to be
hot tomorrow
it’s warmer today
than yesterday
it’s a dead horse
it’s upwind of us
start digging

stop beating it
you can’t win

stop beating 
the dead horse

dead horse
start digging
dig that dead horse
how it smells

it’s no prize
it’s not a game

you can’t win
stop beating

start digging
dead horse
start digging
a big hole
bigger
make it bigger digger
bigger

dead horse takes a big hole to hide

stop beating it
it just gets softer and harder to roll
when you do
and we’re going to need to roll it
into the hole
when we’re done

dig
big
it’s a big horse
a dead horse
dead


Alone, Revisited

Wake up
what you call
“alone”
but for the furniture,
ceiling, walls, floor,
paint, wiring, 
glass windows,
art, books, 
consumer electronics,

all of which are talking,
all of which are listening.

Later, still (perhaps)
“alone”
except for the aforementioned 
et cetera, and
all have shut up
or down
or fallen silent. 

Describe my days
however you want.
Say lonely, 
say empty,
say sad:

I still don’t miss you.


My Body Steals The Poem From Me

My body’s not right tonight.
I have to keep it from writing this poem.
I have to intervene. It’s attempting
the first person, so I respond:

butter pat,
maple sauce,
meaty arms of the morning.

This may make it seem that I am forgetting my manners,
not addressing you, my guest, when in fact I am trying
to make you comfortable, keep my body
from breaking house rules:

iron opening, 

bronze axe,
stone regard.

My body escapes, taking hostages
as it flees.  It demands the poem
as ransom. I counter the offer,
a good faith gesture:

car diversion,
bicycle mentor,
skateboard stopgap.

Alas, my body still demands the first person.
I hand it over. I, I, I 
apologize to you, my guest, sorry as well 
to the gatekeepers, I’m only trying to save — 

lead box,
lead coffin,
lead grave marker

trying to save another
from my body’s insistence
upon a faithful rendition
of its version of this moment — 

lead box, 
lead casket,
lead picture frame

The content of the moment is never what matters.
What my body insists upon never changes.
How it is insulted and ravaged never changes.
How it blossoms anyway never changes —

rose escapement,
daisy escarpment,
aster entrapment

I will not apologize again to you, my guest here;
by now it must be obvious that what matters
is not what the body demands, but whether it presents the demand
as sentence, or as spell.