Monday, August 8, 2016


rewire the relationship
father and song
loud habit
flow and understanding
the deep secret of change
change itself
relationship to song
rewire the relationship
to father
to satan
to church
rewire the language
altered meanings of
energy resides
in the change

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Trace The Lines

I try to trace the lines back

The night was dark
Without stars
Do you know what I mean?

My body was twisted
and formed of clay and pale powder.
Thrown into the air
and endless rolling hillsides.

I try to trace the lines back

Red and white lights
streaked below the bridge.
Veins that carry flesh, soul, meaning.
I peek out from a blanket of forgetfulness,
stretching from California to Arizona.
Catch the road, straight and black.
Look for a star.

I try to trace the lines back

Somebody was there
a mirror
just past the shabby brick building.
I dismissed the thought
Curious, slashing in the wind,
those elements tangled me in color,
leading me to desolate places
surrounded by water
and black carrion birds.

I try to trace the lines back

There was a fluttering hand
the ropes of my bondage cut into me
the sound of an animal.
I am carried home unto awakening
can see forever in every direction

I try to trace the lines back

I cannot remember
I cannot remember what I was
I cannot remember

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Entrance of the Myth

A single cell took what was there, what was let in through the wet portal that led in and out of the world.  And we could not know which was which, what was where, who was what. The world, the very concept implied a particular destination and place we had formed with fixed lines and edges. And here the signifier broke down and assumed its nebulous shape.
The boundaries could be defined by skin, but that was much too simple, too primitive a barrier when we could so easily see the flowing channels of neon green and pink, and then deeper still to the level of molecules and atoms so we could know, for just a moment, so we could see, just for a moment, that the shape and skin and thing itself did not exist, that our perception of it, of phenomena itself, was an illusion to which we all passively subscribed.
As that single cell accepted what was taken, as the message was sent, the myth penetrated that great boundary separating blood from air. It spread quickly, though time no longer seemed to be passing. God was here now, flowing through and around us, sprinkling seeds. And we flowered. I journeyed down the tunnel, petals and petals unfolding before me so that I could reach out and see the lines in their electric state.
Spain and the hot plazas spewing yellow and gold lights, blood red roses and softness, black shiny hair and pale skin and polka dots. Shiny blue cars riding low to the ground, graffiti and rainbow colors on the forgotten cement walls of our urban systems. Dark forests and hairy creeping creatures, dancing, moving, fucking. Deep and dark, raw sex without restraint.
The myth was a secret where we teetered on the edge with neon shapes and candlelight, marking the boundaries where the gods came and entered.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Questions For A Sunday Afternoon

There is a simple choice
one of gray, with fingers of red and black.

There is a simple choice
which I ponder, which I let roll over my tongue like goo and
the delicate noise of percussive vocalization.

There is a simple choice,
but it is no choice
simply because I cannot understand the alternatives
not with the parts of me that wander out windows
and stare at the bright lights of coming trains.

What can a choice be
when I do not see it laid before me
on a platter of shiny silver edged in delicate floral patterns?

Here there are vultures.
Here there are laws where the civilized go to worship
where the chant echoes hollow on stone walls
where books are torn and stomped under an army of bare feet outlined in black ash.

Worship comes in all forms
All contortions.
I have thought it is for the faint of thought
for the weak of body
for the stubborn of mind.
I am no longer sure of it
as I sit on the edge of a plump bed,
words dripping off the edge of my tongue,
the sticky semen of civilization.

Thought is not without consequence.
This we have known for far too long.
There are places with cages,
rooms without windows and touch,
procedures with complicated names
that kill the part of flesh still seeking
the colored fractals of knowledge.

There are the rooms in which I have hidden.
Rivers crossed which cannot be undone.
I have made the choice,
There is only one.

Stars are out there
deep in the black of beyond,
I can feel them through the walls,
can sense their death long before I came to be here.
The moon pushes parts of me onward,
how can I say no?
Such a pretty light cannot be ignored,
not by one as romantic as I.
I will follow the waves,
waters need no words,
each crash is a sentence,
a communication beyond symbols and fixed meaning.
It is sometimes sex,
a thunderous pounding.
It is sometimes red
And soft like petals.
Sometimes roaring or delicate in its nuanced fragrance.
We can never tell,
and I do not try and understand.

Can it happen here?
In this place
under this lamp

In this collection of clutter and mass breathing?

For now, the questions await unanswered, wavering in the darkness like flags forgotten.
What can words communicate more than a slippery tongue?
I will take my chances on the pile of stones.

I have arrived at the place for mindless wandering,
I have come often.
Naked, alone, scared beyond comprehension.
I return.

There is but one simple choice,
though I laugh, sitting here on this plump end of a bed.
Laugh, knowing it is not without its temptations.

This is for all of the moons that have passed
in this country of falsities,
of missed turns and rounded corners
the devil hides among the faithful
the heathens rarely bury their young.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

For Something Else

My heart started beating when I realized my turn to speak was coming up, a kind of pounding right in the center of my chest that lightly echoed in a full body reverberation. The dj, wearing a vest made of sheet music, looked towards me, microphone in hand. In a deep, practiced voice, he said:
“Now a few words from the sister of the bride and Desiree, the sister of the groom.” 
My body reacted and I stood up. I walked towards him, reached for the mic and waited as Desiree took her place beside me. The mic was slightly warm in my grip.
I stood there, looking first at my sister on my left, sitting in an off the shoulder white dress at a small table just for two, her husband next to her.  I looked into the crowd of people, sitting behind plates of food and half filled wine glasses. Some of them I knew from childhood, others were still strangers.
I looked into them, but did not really see them, not as individuals, not even like people. They were a mass of energy and even though they appeared as human shapes, my perception went past that simple quality. 
I took a breath, my body somehow relaxing on its own without brain intervention. I looked at the groom, sitting in a suit and jacket beside my sister.
I opened my mouth and got exactly three words out before the fourth caught in my throat. I was immediately surprised by it, hearing it from a stranger’s perspective even though it came out of me. My years of training moved through me in that moment as I calmly kept going, speaking slowly enough for the words to move through me, a vessel talking to the great pulsating mass that went beyond us. 

Later I understood that my sister wanted a party, a real party with dancing and energy. It was then I understood, it was then I decided that I would be that party. I would be the dancing body, I would help her create that invocation.
The only way to make a party is to be a party.  I wiggled and jumped to rap. I bounced and sang to early 90s hip hop. I gathered my chiffon skirt up and did some grinding to Justin Timberlake.
We were on a patio, just steps from the ocean waters now black under the night sky. Between us and the ocean was a cement promenade, even at night there were people walking by. I realized we were on display, the dancers, the people standing on the sidelines grabbing drinks at the bar, the older couples standing against the cement ledge, we were all on display and I let myself be a spectacle, giving up self conscious thoughts about what the three black guys thought of us dancing to Tupac or what the couple walking hand in hand perceived as they saw us dancing in a circle around the bride and groom. I flowed into the pure ritual of it, allowing myself to be a dancer, a singer of repeated tunes, a sister of the bride, a wild invocant mixing tribal movements and fist pumping and flamenco to “I like big butts and I cannot lie…”

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Last Painting

I remember the last painting he ever made.  The colors, the memory of its creation, its absence from the walls of the family home haunt me and often come to me in fragmented thoughts and dreams that rise from the black and green pools of unconscious thought and find my waking mind like water drawn to the surface of a desert by some miraculous force.
I wonder how much of his life, how much of my life was reflected in that paint, in the colors and shapes he brought into existence.  How much of it was a blueprint for what was to come, the tea leaves of a man brought to vibrant life by his own hands, delicately choosing the brush thickness and pigments that would forever remain, at least in my thoughts.

The metal easel was set up in the corner of our large, light filled patio, my red child’s size easel was close to his…papa bear and baby side by side.  The homeowners before us had added the patio and we used it for birthday parties and occasional grilling and for some time, perhaps years, I don’t remember exactly, an art studio. 
The walls extended just to hip height, above that it was windows to the ceiling. In the right hand corner, just off from the sliding glass door which led to the formal living room, was a world of paint and chemicals in small metal canisters with thumbprints over them in red and black and mixtures of the rainbow. 
Our large table he had made of an old wooden door that had been left in the garage and it was held horizontally by two wooden legs he had also made, using crude and rough lumber.  Serving as a thick six foot table, he pushed it against the wall which faced the wooden deck. 

In the corner, to the left of the table, were the easels, directly facing the blue pool just beyond the windows. He arranged his years of collected supplies in a methodical way along the back edges of the table.
Towards the middle were old jars in a variety of shapes and sizes which held the brushes. There seemed to me every size and option, thick-handled ones of smooth wood with a thick bunch of hairs at the end, other more dainty, with thin handles and perfectly pointed tips meant for delicate line work. Others had bristles in the shape of thin fans and there were dozens of other brushes, each designed for a particular purpose. 
To the right of the jars and brushes were the chemicals; turpentine and paint thinner and half a dozen others I never bothered to learn.  Beside them were empty jars to use during cleaning and a small pile of rags meant to wipe off paint and solution, though I ruined many of his brushes by neglecting this crucial step.
Along the back left side of the table were a mountain of white tubes, each one with a strip of color at the top which promised the containment of vibrant oil paint in every shade imaginable.

I knew he had been a painter, the walls of our living room attested to that. There were several rich and moody paintings of surreal shapes and people, the subjects of which seemed barely real. There was an aesthetic about his work that seemed to favor particular colors, or particular shapes of particular colors; he loved maroon, black, green and orange and touches of white for shading.
But though I knew he had been a painter, I had never seen him paint until the day he began his last.

The canvas on the easel went through a series of changes, I watched from my seat on the couch just past the other set of double sliding glass doors which led to the informal living room as he applied the first layer of white gesso, then later above it a background of dark green and black. He used the fine edge of his palette knife to push the paint on the canvas, the effect creating simultaneously smooth strokes with slightly  thicker edges, all of which made subtle mixed textures of the green and black paint, blending them in such as way that it was hard to tell what was black and what was green, they seemed to melt into each other, just hinting of the other’s presence, an allusion to color that seemed to me full of questions and mystery and deep penetrating substance. Two colors that were full and alive, whose presence seemed to go deeper beyond the simple thickness of the canvas, deep into time and lineage and space.

For weeks, perhaps months, I cannot remember, he added more. Above the magical darkness, suspended among the undulating green and black was a single leaf.  With no tree or branch beside it, the leaf hovered in bright contrast to the rich darkness and texture of the background. 
It had a somewhat tropical feel, with a wide face and slightly wavy edges that seemed to mirror moving water in their ripples. I watched its existence manifest with layers of green, dark and light along some contours and in other areas of the leaf a hint of yellow.
He added strokes of white using both the thick and thin brushes and created definition and shading and movement on an still surface.  To me, the leaf was bright and buoyant and perfectly contrasted the deep darkness where it floated.

I thought he was done, but then several weeks later he added more. They were big and bulbous drops of red, yellow and white water which, to me, looked angry and full of vengeance.  The drops came from the upper right hand side of the canvas and crashed into the delicate veins and cellulose of the leaf in the center, pushing into it and destroying its simple existence.
If the leaf had contrasted the color and mysterious mood of the darkness behind it, then the drops were in direct conflict with the mood of the leaf. To me they seemed to vibrate with vicious violence, intent on destroying the cool elegance of the leaf with raw red power.
I was scared of what the painting had become.  The drops of red and yellow and white filled me with a sense of fear. I cannot remember what I said to him, if it was anything at all. 

The canvas never made it to our living room walls where the few survivors of his days as a painter hung. I never saw it again.
It took years, but at some point the many jars of brushes, the tubes, the table, the easel, it all went away, perhaps slowly, perhaps all in one day, I cannot remember. I do know it was the last painting he ever made. 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A World Within A World

Open and exposed
we watched the tide.
A trail of white lingered behind the breaking waves,
bread crumbs left behind for our thoughts.
I looked at her, wind blowing that long straight hair
like it was in a battle with the elements.
We were forest creatures,
standing beside this place of water.
Sounds we had still not become accustomed to,
scents never experienced.
If we remembered the trail of ants
over stumps left behind,
if we thought of mushrooms
and ferns and the rotting mulch of our
rain-drenched home-
no, I could not think of it. 
We would fall.
There are some things we cannot do, not now.
A dotted line entered my consciousness.
Two double-stranded helixes.
A diagram.
Pure form, all lines and angles, twisting,
Making bodies, shapes, information.
I looked again at her,
A world within a world.
A rose, within a rose.
We watched the tide, the fading white to blue,
Blue to white.
Long trails along the water like our thoughts lingering
on far away places.
She was an angel beside me, one angel
consisting only of truth, of beauty which opened wider
the more I looked. 
We were forest creatures
made on the kitchen sink.
Dirt, the remains of bitter greens
and a splash of water. 
It was simple once,
perhaps it still was, but my mind
was running with shadows,

with extra words
which seemed to spill over into the water
and run away from me. 
I could not even make a move
to chase after them,
I could not spook the angel.
I stood still
presenting myself with a bit of falsehood.
Direct correspondence could cause the
winds to change.
The gray pearl might dart, might
jump into the choppy waters
that seemed to so adequately mirror the
tumult inside.
We had wanted for nothing
there with the shade, with the dampness of
winters that never quite left.
Not now, there are some things I cannot say.
Not now.
The water speaks,
a rose opens.
The fractal widens,
showing itself finally to
my fractured mind.
The cracks widen,
it seeps in, finally finding the opening for which
it had long awaited.
My gates had been sealed,
tightened and bolted.
The sea air has done its work,
smelling as sweet
as all that has been forgotten.
Unhinged, I now grasp.
Another speaks
the words.
We forgot all the names.
In the garden
our jaws opened,
your own widening perception
Mine broke and crumbled.
Then we wanted.
Just briefly,
we wanted.
desire had been born.
Perhaps we would put it to rest.
The angel and I
the waters and the new passage available,
For a moment, a minute, a day?
We must jump,
The path is open,
oozing and bloody,
the seals and cement, the path
the darkness.
The secrets are open
and we must jump while we can.
The new world of waves
of seaweed and mermaids
in this new, unfamiliar world.
We finally jump away
from the trees and earth so familiar,
into the darkness.
A world within a world.