Saturday, November 9, 2013

A Poem in The Finger

Thank you to everyone at The Finger for publishing my poem 'Quiet'

Check out their website

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Rock n' Roll: An Alternative Sisypus

This is an excerpt from a longer email I wrote my good friend Chris. I thought I´d share it with anyone bored enough to stumble on this all but functional blog. Please consider 'you' you.


I came across a little philosophy today you might enjoy by Albert Camus. He detailed an allegory about the Greek myth of Sisypus. Sisypus, once king before defying Zeus, was doomed to forever roll a boulder up a steep hill but whenever coming near to the peak the boulder would roll back down starting the whole process over again. Camus equates Sisypus' lot to ours, we are created and lead a life of hardship and labor all seemingly futile and void of meaning (how often I am lacerated by questioning the meaning of it all!). Camus asks us to figure Sisypus happy (however difficult it might be to assume anyone in such a situation happy), giving a description of Sisypus' happiness and contentment coming from his scorn of Zeus. That his forever cursing of Zeus will bring about some tranquility or purpose. 

I don't like that. It rings too true to how I actually lead my life rather then how I'd ideally like to lead it.

I am not one for God though I do believe in a creator. Whether it was a omniscient being or just a randomized playing out of physical laws since the bang of a singularity (how akin God and a singularity are) my individual consciousness was forged. To believe you were created is to admit a creator. 

My rock is very tangible to me, the hill I roll it up very much under my feet and all of it I do all day to day without grandeur.

Some days I accept the idea of this world being without meaning, that our angst and dissatisfaction comes from our rationality and persistence of trying to acquired answers- absolution- where there are none. Constantly dropping the bucket down into a dry well. 

Other days the wind speaks to me and I feel it somewhere this deeper sense of being. Since I reject Camus' conclusion I must replace it with one of my own. Here is the best I have:

Sisypus rolls the boulder up the hill because he can. Because if not he then who? If Sisypus was still king, the trials and tribulations of his life would undoubtedly be greater then a simple rock roller. And what greater purpose does being king have over rolling a rock up a hill? A spot in the history books? What are history books for temporal beings? On the timeline of now since the birth of first light history are as important as facebook profiles? Why be anything but a simple kind of man? No. Sisypus should enjoy his rock rolling because it is equal to, if not better than, any alternative. 

Did you ever dig a hole as a child for no reason, just to dig a hole? Did you ever make art as an adult for no reason, just to make art. Sisypus rolls his rock the same way a child builds a sandcastle on the beach. He likes the way his body moves and conquers, for a time, the earth. He listens to the wind and feels the sun against his skin. He is unmindful of Zeus, but Zeus has nothing to do with Sisypus any long and there is no one to scorn because there is nothing to scorn for. 

I know my boulder will forever roll back down the hill, but it is my rock, no one else´s, and it is the only one I have. 

I don't know how well I did with my alternative conclusion of Camus' allegory. Optimism is a challenge for me. Leibniz says that this world, even with all its pain and suffering, is the greatest one that could have been created out of all the other worlds possible. Maybe. I think that this is the world that is, and it is the only one that will be, at least for us, so whats the point of comparing to other that might have been. 

The entire course of history, since the creation of man, since the beginning of time and space, since God came into consciousness, and since my parents breed, everything has evolved and lead to this moment: Me sitting at a computer at 5 in the morning writing a dear dear friend of mine. 

My rock isn't so bad. It is the only one I've got so there is really no basis for comparison. My roll isn't terrible either.  

You carry on, my brother. Rock 'n Roll. 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Strung Up on the Roadside

There will be prophets,
beggar martyrs too
There will be more tolerant men then me
They'll be waiting for you
                 around corners, behind rocks
in the catacombs of your home.
They are mutant men
senseless over the shouting Gods within them 
You've seen them.
I was one of them,
as much as anyone was anything,
blinded and bound,
strung up on a gallow
a post upon the way to town
Speaking my tale to anyone below
listening or just passing by
I took your ear along with you mercy
and since, my voice has weakened
my shroud has lowered upon my eyes
there is so much more to lose alive
the Gods within me have silenced
and I tell my tale to no one.

I do not ask you to live upon the roadside.

Months of Editlessness

when fish came walking up on earth
the airs was all fire and healing

when fish came walking up on earth
weightlessness was too large

when fish came walking up on earth
homes needed to be found and forced

lips went without sippable cups
creatures were ugly, baby or no

when fish came walking up on earth
your mother cried from your words

when fish came walking up on earth
it'll be two days before the sidewalk is finished

when fish came walking up on earth
manifest my hands upon you

sweet sweet love or sweet sweet ignorance
the things we've known are the things that died

PlayPlay 6.27.13

Maybe since I never had an intention
I cannot revile the current course

Yet there is still so much fain
in yesterdays todays and tomorrows.

it builds like a city, feels like the city
arching in above our heads

damn the rivers and the floods
they'll think but they'll never know

tell yourself you've been through worse
never force a smile

Tell them all that the first thing you've written in months
is the best you've written in years.

it will kill you eventually
I will if it doesn't

Monday, February 18, 2013

desolate tap hounds

desolate tap hounds
suckling at the teet
of their ripe mothers

pussy mongering imps
blacking out hearts
for imperfect truths

drown the headlights
indian style warrior
let your speed guide you

carreen on the hood
of childhood fame
wash the hollow from you

breathe the known thriller
believe in the known gods
let the haggered butcher go

how overwhelming must be
to be something
low rides the princes crown (and pants)

drink the little girls dry
they only live once
you are the only immortal

The View from the Underground

For those of you not plugged in, Alexandra Petri wrote an article for the Washington Post entitled "Is Poetry Dead?" I will not link it here. It has already gotten too much attention and does not deserve another back link.

First, when I was living abroad I would get rather irate and abrasive whenever I would hear someone speak ill about America. America, my home, I rue every moment my feet touch it's soil and hate to the fiber of my being the science experiments this country conducts on it citizens, the completely disillusioned values, and the travesties which are daily occurrences here. But no one talks shit about my family but me.

Alexandra Petri isn't a poet.

Second, whatever. Let her, let all of them, think poetry is dead. Ghost get the better view of the world anyway.

I could say a whole bunch of shit like: to even state that poetry is dead, or could be dead, is to completely misconceptualize what poetry stands for (and no, misconceptualize isn't a word. Poetry, bitch.).

But I won't. I don't care or at least care less then I'm letting on here.

I'll admit fire rose in my eyes when I read that she thought "what we mean by poetry is a limp and fangless thing." I could have broken a nose or two with the spine of a Kay Ryan book.

But really the only way to get anyone to read your shit on-line anymore is to make wild and outrageous claims. The internet is flooded with so many panting dogs out there, Chihuahuas and German Shepards both spell "bark" the same way, just one has to yap a little more for attention. I don't blame her really. And I do wholly think poetry needs a swift kick in the ass, so why not have it be from an outsider questioning its validity. I'll admit I've though it before. But then, this my home. This is where I live.

So what no one's work is currently matching up to the Divine Comedy or The Odyssey. The cannon is forged over time. Literary importance is bestowed, not just inherent. Who knows what any poet will be in the future besides dead. And can't the cogency of poetry also be said for all classical forms of contemporary art? Yes, there is just a lot more money in oil, but for how much longer? How many of those young artist who've never even touch oil could could have been the next Van Gogh, sitting behind a computer doing graphic design for a dental office? How many could have been the next Whitman but instead of standing in a open field broke and naked sat at a desk inserting SEO keywords into some article they shitted out?

Maybe poetry isn't dead. Maybe the poets aren't alive. Maybe we're all just too afraid to throw it all away and just write poetry and only poetry. To forget health insurance and let that upper groin lump grow and pray it doesn't take you until you've finished that last chap book. To let go of mortgage payments and live like a monk on hangouts. Show me the mangled artist who gave it all up for poetry and gracefully took a shotgun to the dome or walked into the river with a stone-coat. Save this over-fed diabetes and cancer culture.

Take the gutter over a cubical. Be a nothing no-name alcoholic scarred broke vagrant poet rather then some dead on their feet HMO shielded journalist marketeer.

If poetry is dead is your opinion, keep your opinions. In fact, keep your money. Keep your fame. Keep your notoriety. And if you are opening lit mags with that attitude, keep your fucking readership.

Yeah, I'm pointing some fingers, but let this be a conversation with the self I'm sharing with you. All of us poets have been worrying too much about what poetry is and where poetry is, rather then writing poetry. So I'm stopping here.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Under Review

My application to graduate school is in and pending. And I must admit it's been on my mind.

If I break it down, which I need to do hourly, what irks me is the hope, however false or true, the idea that I might be admitted. And such a might is an infinitesimal mite gnawing away at my touchy flesh. 500 to 600 applicants is a lot of funking aspiring waste-holes like myself. Lets say 300 of those applicants are poesy fruitcakes like myself vying for 2 or 3 slots in the New Writers Project roster. I illogically break it down in my head like this:

10%- I am an infinity better writer then. These are completely delusional children who's parents held them too much, teachers coddled them too often, and who still think writing about drugs is acceptable after Burroughs.

20%- I'm squeaking past. These decent poets around 25 to 26 years old who've taken a break after undergraduate but all they did was work and occupy themselves with money wondering why they aren't growing up after college like they assumed they would. They never when on that adventure they pinky promised themselves they would find and survive. 20% I have less fear then, and it shows in writing.

30%- I'll beat out because of academic achievements, internships, publications, life experiences, age, and, more then likely, marital status (thanks love).

When I applied, as nervous as I was to have everything perfect and as much as I lacerated myself over each and every single word of my portfolio, I was sure I had it in the bag. But its been a month and half since then and that affability that once flooded my insides has ebbed like the tide with the moonrise. Now is the darkness. Now is the time of bellows and its unseen bellowers. Now is the period I sleep and try to stay warm and hope the sun to peek the horizon with the warmth of a new day.

Now I call it at 50/50.

50%- I'll get in and I'll be on a predominant path towards the accomplishment I've berthed for five years, two professions, three states, seven countries, two internships, a hand full of publications, and a fuck ton of failures and triumphs.

50%- I'll look at my wife and ask, with empty pockets and an empty mind, "Now what?"

Send me those good energies.