Drawn and Quartered

You make me feel drawn and quartered,
sending me to all four corners of the galaxy.
In love and war, you give me no quarter,
I’m not half the man I thought I was, I’m a quarter.

You make me look smarter the way a tuxedo
can show that I chart my own charter.
Loving you is like walking a high tightrope –
it’s a hard barter but the vista is like no other.

I’m smothered by pure wind – an angel’s breath away from flying,
a hair’s breadth away from dying – but I can see farther
than any landlubber. I just can’t look down – it’s forbidden.
For if I fall, I will land harder than any martyr’s mother.

I’ve been bitten by a love-bug so I feel stung
when my cheeks blush, I’m not kidding –
It’s like I’m a kid bidding his mom to let
him eat the forbidden cookie dough in the kitchen.
Lucky licking. You’re butter dripping.
And I’m thinking how can I get more of you into my system?

I’m insistent on walking a straight line but
on a tightrope what you need is rhythm.
So you can bounce in time
like knowing how to land on a beat with a fresh rhyme.
Or knowing when to pass the mic to an MC
who can speak to the moment with some truer lines.

What’s yours is mine and what’s mine is yours.
Household chores feel like foreplay.
My romantic regimen is a mix of making you
moan in bed
and serving you coffee when you wake up every day.

I love the way you love my way of being.
I love that we see each other’s way of seeing.
Some days I swear I’m dreaming.
Can you tell me are you seeing what I’m seeing?

It’s like I stumbled toward a mirage and found an oasis teeming
with fauna and flora fit for a corsage
and I thought to myself “Oh my God!” even though
I don’t have the confidence of any god.

Faithless atheist baiting higher powers with a lightning rod.
Show me what you got!

This notepad

Writing raps in this notepad helps this here broke lad break down his fear.
I hone the notes;
phase out bad elements
and purify the filaments which steer
my common sense.

But does it make you glad to know
that there are poets who crow about flow,
or about political turmoil –
whether serious or just some passing fad?
Those who care to
blare their woes to
chairs in rows
all their stories that
nobody knows
as if they were
impressive impresarios?

Well, I, for one,
love the tippy-toe confessionals,
for two fortuitous reasons:
seeing the Rule of Three being used so effectively and,
forcing the audience to forego their habitual

rituals, no matter the residual effects,
it should probably feel like you’re having some really good sex!
Coming correct, with continual consent and,
I bet if my decadent deceit need not be repeated then,
you listen well enough to get your crush’s cheeks heated!

Some advisory reads: “No Kiss and Tell!”
so I gotta hide my eating.
Never saw the sense in revealing where I
regularly like to find my seating.

But, as for reading? I liken it to lightning:
it’s like ideas flash before my eyes – blinding
my deciding mind until the sound of meaning crashes
through my spine and spills onto the page as writing.

You think I’m hiding Hell? My insides are inciting
a riot just because today they find it exciting!
My sides are saddling up my rib-cage for some riding.
Scamper up on these rhymes – they’re galloping like a stallion

rallying to the cry of a work horse. Of course,
who better to tell it to the letter than a good source?
Have you not suckled this simmering sauce that I sourced
from the finest of the coarsest boors? If not, then it’s your loss.

Stamen and Seed

The sun sits low upon the rainy hill
while my senses sit idle in the bone
deaf to the pitter-patter of wild thrill
and youthful candor. A wizened, old crone

beckons the children to return indoors
from out the rain, from out the cloudy tears,
away from the muck of the marsh and moors
which govern over matriarchal fears,

and into the warm embrace of a home
where leaders lie to their own families
and lovers live wherever peace may roam
unmolested by prejudice and sleaze.

It’s the end of an era, so they say
at the end of every failed decade
filled with dumb policy and vile hearsay
like Sisyphus’ rant against the steep grade.

And wherever love is lost, war has gained
A bootstrap foothold held fast for godspeed
Against a raging flood impassive, stained
by rosy desires of stamen and seed.

Pot-ter-y:poetry

Poetry is a rifling through the drawers of an old dresser in search of some embarrassing photograph that you can now take advantage of with your matured intellect.

Poetry is a ring circus hosting clownish parlour tricks for the sake of a riotous laugh.

I have given it no quarter and it has offered me none in return.
You think you can lie to the page and expect mercy?
Never.
Ink draws blood black when its truth is set hard against you.

Nothing binds more bitter than the written word, so we must truly live in a capitalist society,
for curses have all but been replaced as the primary means of revenge.

And, so this poetry that births itself upon a webpage, in pixellated photons, drenched in the machinations of the info-philic modern age, is even so, worming itself towards a great harmony of thought.
For what else is there to life but to love and to lose?
And if writing can allow a nation to exist for centuries, then it can surely free me from pain.

Crash

help is on its way
she said
wait, who’s she?

help is on its way
which way?
how did I get here?

I remember
I recall
so little
about why
and how or when
even now it is hard
to pinpoint the meaning
of the voices and the gestures,
the blurry lights
and doppler sounds
spinning round and round
and round.
I’m sick.
Something is hurt inside me.
My pulse is throbbing
somewhere everywhere bleeding
going leaving where am I going
i dont wanto go idontwantt

White light. Clean. Neat.
It’s a hospital room. I’m alive.
I can feel, I can feel again.
What happened? Was I in an accident?
I was driving on highway 11
just before Sudbury, in that bad stretch
of the road, with the winding turns,
and calamitous, overhanging rockfaces,
when a dark blur burst from the ditch,
just as dusk was dimming the lights,
I saw beige, no, white? flash on the movement –
horns? antlers. A moose, crossing the road,
spin, tumble, yelling. I remember me yelling now
then darkness and now here.
And now, what next? I can’t see or feel my body
and so I burn a hole into the door to my infirmary
with my gaze, waiting for the doctor to deliver his
judgment. And, I wait, and I wonder,
what next?

Sea Change

Open mat, firm floor, breathless chests.
A radii of pinpoint irises focus on the sensei’s stern commands as they issue from out his mouth.

The dojo’s stony silence subsides as all this fret and activity comes and goes.
Its concrete sides respirate between the cracks in the paint.
Compared to the rapidly-pumping cavities of the jiujitsu-kas,
the dojo’s deep breaths take an eon to unfold,
as the air gradually compresses during the day,
and dissipates in the evening, slowly,
like a lagoon that fills with rainwater only to breach its levees and trickle downstream all eventide.

Atmospheric changes can move a room. Rain may melt a mountain and calcium will form a coral reef, given enough time.
Some changes may even move a person from one identity to the next –
a shifting of worlds, as beliefs are unwound and unmade only to be forged anew,
like shards of iron softened into cooler, harder constructs.

You can wake up in a hospital bed unmasked, stripped of all lies and fabrication, and bared before a cynical family, beaten back by diagnoses of derelict diseases, and uncouth scar tissue.
Or, you may slowly realise a pattern of behaviour so entrenched in your way of being that you can no longer conceptualise how to realise yourself in a different way, and so suffer beneath the chains of doubt and uncertainty.
What is known is that as all things change, so does life itself, and so must our selves.

At the end of class, the ambitious few disrobe their gis and inspect their changing bodies, eager for any sign of growth or development, but what they discover is that the topography of their mind has been altered first, as their desire to master a martial art reaches out into the world, and makes itself known like a sea change at high tide.

Two keys

Two keys, chained;
Two private passwords;
Two separate addresses;
And somehow I always use the wrong one first:
The key for your door when I’m at my own;
The password to my laptop on your keyboard;
Your address on google maps when I’m late for dinner,
leaving me lost in transit between my home and yours.
My hands are telling me something that they only know
and I have tried strangling them to discover the truth
but only ended up wringing my hands with worry.
I’m not an absent-minded person.
Or, am I? I don’t know –
that might be too hard of a question for me to answer alone.
But, is there a pattern to my forgetfulness?
Am I selectively unconscious about certain things?
What will happen if I ever leave one of these two homes?
Will I hang on to the old key, the old password, the old address
and use them by accident out of blind nostalgia?
Or, will I toss it into the river and say “Be done with it!”
and curse the past like a feckless child?
Who’s to say what the future holds when the present
slips in between the past the way wind
winds through bamboo.

Collab. with Mariana Stabilé

Sleepy

Sleep, sleep, go away,
Come back to drowse me when
it is not the middle of the day.
I cannot think in a straight line
because every time I close my eyes
they spend a little too much time going cross-eyed
until I am third eye blind and barely aware that I’m alive.
But, I also need you to stay when the night hums
like a congregation getting ready to pray.
The same low register refrain of grasshoppers grazing grates on the nervous system. The fear of hyperactivity among the insects, of the ultraviolence of locusts worms its way into my defenseless brain. Crippled under the weight of the cotton blankets, I entreat every fabled deity for the sweet succour of sleep. But, none reply.
Amd, my sleep-deprived brain is far too addled to absorb the excuses given for why even Zeus and Thor and Joseph Smith could not govern over the realm of sleep.
I only know what I dream and what I dream is too mystical to remember. Too meaningful to memorize. Too slippery tp conceptualize. Hazy meandering amid the disorganized mind, like sifting through lines amd counting the intersection.

Merkel’s, Obama’s, and Putin’s Acceptance Speech for Poet Laureate

Merkel:

It is with warmth and pride that I stand here before you today, my fellow citizens of poetry.

The past year has been one of triumph and tribulation. There have been unexpected events that have tested our national character to its limits and I acknowledge the intrepid boldness with which you have faced these difficult times.

We stand together against the forces of terror and ignorance which plagues those abroad and threatens our values at home. Alongside our allies, we must defend the free world. We are playing our part, because it is in our interests. But, one sad fact of the war against knowledge and literacy is the number of refugees who flee brainwashing itself, aggrieved by censorship and oppression. For those that may speak out loud, free from fiendom, we must lead these encumbered individuals into the safety of our great nation with our united cries.

Again, I thank you for your kindness and openhandedness. Together, we shall lead towards a better tomorrow!


Obama:

I stand here humbled by the great responsibility that each and every one of you has granted me here tonight.

That every word must have its place is now well understood. The poetic body faces outward against a great sea of chaotic thought, while our collective vision carries us safely towards the horizon. Ships have sunk in the past and salty tears have been swallowed by all. As our pain unites us in this interminable quest for hope, we must pray against the nightmares of violence and fear.

We stand upon the waters of doubt and uncertainty alike, and I have been trusted with the honourable task of steering at the helm of this ship. As I rise to take on this challenge, I am reminded of those who have come before me, and how they have remained resolute in the face of incredible danger because of the strength of our poetic body’s principles and beliefs.

We are the keepers of this legacy. Your will shall guide my hands as we sail onwards unto prosperity.


Putin:

I would like to, first and foremost, thank you all for your many votes of confidence.

Thank you to all who said “YES!” to poetry and dared to asked the question, “Will we prevail?”. I answer you tonight, “we HAVE prevailed!”. We won in a fair and open field, without the requirements of brute force or intimidation to elevate this humble servant onto this stage that floats above our great and unencompassable motherland.

This is not only a test of our will as a holy nation of writers and thinkers, it is a test for poetic ripeness, for independence and freedom of expression. We have shown that none may impose their will upon us. Nothing and no one.

And to all neutral observers, it was a clean victory, an honest submission of excellence. So, I thank you all for holding me to my promise – we HAVE succeeded. We WILL prevail.

Glory to Poetry!

Whither Music?

Whither music?
And where from?

I have fallen off a fading fanfare a few times too many.
Some hot-jazz musicians hopped up on pomp and pizzazz dragged me by my ear
when their cadence walked into a doo-wop two-step
and I found myself toe-tapping against my will.

How now, rhythm?
Have you stolen my body from me again?

I once forgot the sound of your fury:
the fleet-footed fandangos and soft, silky tangos
which fasten my feet to the floor.

But when I remembered, the music moved me in the middle of my mind.
For it makes me speak without words
and understand without knowing.
Feel beyond mere being.

And the first time I heard my heart hearken hard against my chest,
I knew, in some infantile way, that this drum would become the meter of my existence.
That in my core, there would be a metronome to measure out what is left of my life.

But when I grew up, my brain began to scan and train itself to be
a kick-ass pattern recognition machine.
The kind that can casually calculate the physics required to trick the family
cat into spilling the cookie jar.

And amid all the excitement of aging:
the acne, the locker room awkward showers, the unrequited love,
my heartbeat became a background pulse in my culmination.
A faint ticking time-bomb dutifully noting the beats per minute.

So, some days, I must sit with myself
to listen to my body,
so that the beat of my heart will remind me of my birth
and the warmth of the womb.
For it was there that I first timed my tempo to my Mother’s measured meter.
Ba-doum. Ba-doum.
And my heart would match her tune.

The sound of music precedes me from before the time that I begun.
And when I go, and my time here is all done,
whither music?
and where from?

Dedicated to my Mother, Laura LaBelle