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elementary school. St. Pius. Edgewood, KY
higher school. Villa Madonna Academy. Villa Hills, KY
colleges attended. Brescia. Owensboro, KY and
      Northern Kentucky University. Highland Heights, KY

(some older writings)


Linked By Our . . .

The candleshine was nearly as soft as your sigh,

Dirty-Old-Man Moon stood wide-eyed at your window,

and the music was like a late July drizzle with a broken heart.

Sitting and smoking on the couch we stained black with our ashes;

three feet between us, but we became one --

stitched together by a gaze;

linked by our eyes, not our hips --

a snippet of love in our fleshy collage.


I pray a rosary to you,

my golden calf --

can faith make heaven?


She Hit The Mute Button

She sat coiled at my side like a coral snake.

I was smoking a Chesterfield King and keeping my temper on a leash.

She stared at the television like a twelve-year-old boy who’d found

naked breasts in a National Geographic --

the sitcom’s idiot drone drowned out all talking or thought.

Thirty minutes later, the show ended and she hit the mute button

and asked me if I wanted to fuck. I didn’t. She sulked

and I lit another cigarette. She said she felt scared

and I said "Why?"

and she said "You’re going to die."

and I said "No shit."

and she said "No, I mean really soon."

and I said "What makes you think that?"

and she said she had a feeling

and these feelings were never wrong.

Assuming this is true, it seems she’s want at least one naked

conversation in the seven-month relationship, that since it’s genesis

had been sentenced to death --

killed by our labels and measurements and clouded perceptions.


 Architectural Nude

Have you ever seen a naked building?

Well, I have man.

As I recall, the structure wasn’t

wearing any walls, and had

no roof to act as hat (they’re too

troublesome, always attracting

those damned pink things that

shit and piss and whine

about the absence of time;

then they split, leaving the insides

in shambles --)

Hundreds of tons of iron for entrails

now a rustrotted gut under membranes of dust;

the cogs, wheels, valves, and gears

an immobile industrial mandala

for this skeletal temple, whose priests

ran away because God didn’t pay.

Pained and strained Frame,

why do you still stand against the violet sky?

Poor Stony Bones, do you shiver in the winter,

are you frightened by the night?


Voice of Building: "My rusting ribs hold refugee riffraff

and psychos and winos and desolate homos.

I only shiver when the innocent suffer --

winter wind isn’t nearly as cold as a regular user.

Sun’s plunge sees those psychos and winos

and desolate homos hide in my insides

and burn in my gut like

some two-month-old taco.

Come sunrise, I finally fart them

out into the street --

then a fevered breeze blows

those beat, gaseous boys back

to some street corner, or doorway

or bus stop, or bar, where they’ll

linger like a stink ‘till dark."

Lightbeam’s lick and raindrops’

drippy kisses erode the groaning bones

of my skyclad cathedral --

but still it stands!

By strength of spirit, not steel --

this past bastion of industry and business

now a haven and home for hobos --

a steely skeleton of prophecy.

In Heaven, every building is bare-boned.




Here in Cincinnati -- fingers heavy with lover’s gifts:

the feminine scent of mystery,

a hawk’s-head ring cast in pewter or confusion,

and the scabbing tears of anxious teeth.

So weighted are my digits I can scarcely move my hands.

I offered up my words wisdom absurdity chuckles

and they were met with the indolent death of indifference --

the only thing anybody wants from me is a fuck.

Fuck! Fuck! Fuck!

Fuck you and fuck the horse you rode in on,

fuck your mother father sister brother electric-can-opener

pet cat and artificial house plants.

Fuck me and my dysfunctional family, fuck my car,

fuck my job and the welfare state,

fuck taxes and balance the fucking budget,

fuck the government and political corruption,

Fuck democracy! Fuck communism! Fuck anarchism and

fuck anything else that ends in "-ism" !

Fuck the power-brokers and politicians,

fuck Clinton, Dole, and Marion Barry,

fuck drug legalization ‘cause addicts spawn

rising rates of crime and bitch go

get me another beer;

fuck gun control ‘cause I read the Constitution

and my arsenal’s large enough to

qualify me as a militia.

Fuck Jesse Helms;

fuck censorship and the cross the Klan stands

in Fountain Square ‘cause they’re dreaming

of a white Christmas;

fuck Simon Leis for imposing ethical circumspection

on the artists of Cincinnati, then in his piety

breaching private e-mailboxes for inspection.

Fuck McDonalds’ creed of convenience,

fuck MTV for killing song with it’s Snoop-Doggy-gun

of conventionalism.

Fuck destructive Prozac, the deceptive apothecary

whose waterjacket burst inside poor Oliver’s

passionhead, extinguishing holy flame and

changing personality’s taste from black coffee

to something resembling dry white toast.

Fuck the fact that there’s so much to fuck, and

fuck the nymphomaniacal compulsion with which we attempt to

fuck it all.

Fuck the junk monkey!

Fuck the simian yen I unfailingly satisfied,

staying polluted like the Ohio and

flooding my banks for one thousand

days and nights -- this morbific abuse

of body outshining even Jehovah’s

forty day effort on Noah.

Fuck addictions gifts of malicious intent,

the package wrapped up in twenty shades of

seduction -- I tore the paper away

and received these: overdose, seizures,

jail, rehab, a friendless life, a muted

Muse, a cigarette burn collection, and

the creation of so many mutations of

my core-form that I could’ve staged

my own march on Washington.

Here in Cincinnati, in the bathroom of my youth,

I strip me down to spectral skin;

I scrub my crumbling hands clean of last night;

I dissolve my sad ghost-self in the tub’s watery scald --

A recording of Allen Ginsberg’s 1957 Chicago

reading hangs on the humid air like a fern of wisdom --

I’m hungry, and my face is cold.


 Naked Ape Dance

Fat spayed housecat lays

on black-specked back with

legs raised and splayed in

invitation -- a feline


imitation of the homosapien

mating tradition it witnessed

on basement’s mildewed

carpet -- the strange

naked ape dance I

performed with the girl

who walked away to

waltz with another to


a song with simplicity’s

rhythm. I suppose that

I stepped on her toes

once too often.


 In Picturing The Myth

What a strange today it’s been --

twice I saw the sun stumble, trip, and fall into

the dank alleyway of night like a drunk rediscovering

the comforts of pavement --

twice I saw the sun rise in the morning and get

as high as some Merry Prankster, so lit that it’s

shine would leave you red in the face --

Myself now starving, unslept, and shiver-limbed --

Welcome to the Hi-Glamour life of a poet!

thirty-nine cent frozen burritos,

a William S. Burroughs novel,

and back issues of The New Yorker

that were plucked from some upperclass trash can.

The lampstand on my right’s littered with

little yellow lithium pills, plastic guitar picks,

and a black roundstic medium Bic --

it’s a highschool yearbook photo of poet-life

when it thought nobody was looking,

a picture of the myth with a finger up it’s nose.

This deranged today has split open lower lip

with it’s forty Chesterfields and nervous gnaw,

then pulled weary back muscle with third-shift

grunt work --

it’s taught me that life is a conveyor belt

that everyone works on --

and writers must record each package as it passes,

then toss it aside to be processed and sorted.

My mail is as jumbled as a junkyard

and just as fenced in.

I’ve got my insides all twisted up

like the wire tie on a bag of Wonder bread,

and I’ve turned my reversible raincoat of skin

inside-out to save people the trouble

of asking how I feel:

I’m black lung and bodhran-drum heart;

I’m blistered tongue and hands discolored by habit;

I’m the raincoat’s dirty-dishwater-grey flipside,

kept hidden under plastic shell colored

yellow like a school bus or a Bobby McFerrin happyface.

When this schizophrenic today woke me in the morning,

it was a seventy-degree pseudo-spring with a sun

burning alone in the virgin sky --

by nighttime the horizon was heavy with snowclouds,

and the air was wearing nineteen

degrees of frigid sting --

This looking-glass weather reflects the face

of each relationship’s affliction --

a curse of inconsistency and addiction.

It’s only fight or fuck!

usually both, and sometimes even neither,

but never conversation or contentment

when trapped at the extremes of passion.

The Muse must’ve cast this jealous spell

to make me another sad romantic having

nothing but words;

to keep me for herself by killing me slowly

then stuffing my emptied shell to be a trophy

attesting to her power and glory.

I won’t be a glassy-eyed head on

a plaque that’s nailed to the wall

next to Kerouac, Sexton, and Plath!

I won’t be a leathery sack that’s

preserved like a Twinkie and stood

in the corner in a pose that mimics

past majesty!

What I am is a guy with a bad haircut

and an untrimmed goatee, a cigarette-branded

left hand that I burned to the bone,

and a beauty that it seems I only

show in my poems --

Can the damned defeat their assigned fates?

It’s been a bulimic today --

every insight I’ve eaten from the plate of

inspiration has overwhelmed my will,

then been puked onto the page to

purge me of the terrible knowledge:

There’s no line I can ever write that will finish the poem,

and self-destruction only dries out the pen.


 Egg Roll

Like a deep-sea fish from Wild Kingdom,

the microwavable egg roll spit it’s

searing grease at me in defense --

spotting my hand with shades of pink,

scalding skin in attempted escape,

expelling it’s pork-juice to frighten me off.

It didn’t work.

I bit down.


 Fingers And Emotion

Sometimes, when I drive with

the window down and the stereo on,

a cigarette smoldering between yellowed

fingers, and emotion smoldering

in my chest like a first shot of cheap

scotch, I notice that the wind’s blowing

in tune with the music, and

for a moment I quit thinking and exist

as a melody -- a ballad in the key of night.


Original Sin

based on the painting "Original Sin" by Dali

The snake wrapped ‘round the

naked leg like an anklet, the

bare foot planted firm on ground

with a motive in mind --

a leathery old wingtip lay

loose-laced and open, it’s

siren-song floating out of

the open hole.


 American Seraphim

"When age is in, wit is out." - Shakespeare

Sad angels of a sadder yesterday,

what god of spoiled-toddler temperament

evicted you from heaven’s tenement, rent

the bonds of brotherhood like a cheap cotton

T-shirt, then scarred each spirit’s back with a whip

of resentment?

Sad angels of a sadder yesterday,

tell us of your tragedy.

Tell us of the madness that fell on

you like a biblical fury,

of how you questioned the nature

and purpose of suffering --

Christ’s suffering,

your suffering,

the suffering of Egypt’s sons,

and the suffering humanity to

whom suffering ( like skin color

or social caste) is handed down

as birthright.

of how you questioned if this pain is

sadistic entertainment for the celestial brat,

if we’re the B-grade cast in God’s low-budget

horror flick --

tell us of when you were winged things and

why you forgot how to fly;

show us your tear-stained faces of exile:

The sad angel of Dublin night

whose spirit still wanders down O’Connell Street

like feet did, from Isaac’s Hostel past

drunks beggars children street-musicians

alleyways to the pub-roar of O’Donaghue’s,

watering hole of Oscar Wilde and James Joyce,

spilling drinkers and blaring reels into

Ireland’s night like Guiness from a

one-pint mug --

sad angel who was a blue-eyed con-man

and blue-souled poet wandering the streets

of Owensboro or Cincinnati searching for

inspiration sex drug-kicks visions satori

and love existing outside of time --

whose heart pumped alcohol, opiates, Benzedrine,

painkillers, tea, acid, sacred morning glories,

PCP, sleeping pills, and endless nicotine --

who used a rusted blade to slash his wrists,

jumped out of bedroom window, and fled into

the dawn, driving a stolen car to his highschool

then breaking in, taking ten dollars in change,

two gallons of wine, and a book of

Leonard Cohen poems.

The hawk-spirit convinced doctors, rehab, parents

and psychologists that he’d been changed

by the drama, then flew to Owensboro,

putting two hundred miles between him and

his past.

The angel who tried to be a re-run of his father --

with academics, highschool athletics, rock band,

and cast-iron liver;

with homophobia, Chicago road trips, and a

facemask of macho posturing --

he could never be his father though,

because he was an artist, but no

doubt his father’s son

with his Camels, Budweiser, and Cutty Sark --

The enraged angel who thumbed his nose at death,

downing three fifths of Wild Turkey in forty minutes,

passing out in a puddle of snot piss and vomit

bigger than he was,

convulsing and screaming in fetal terror,

cadaverous skin glazed over like rotten bologna --

laying at the feet of his drunk father in cardiac arrest,

his mother began to beat at his lifeless chest

with fists clenched in anger and in prayer,

beat it with a desperate violence,

beat it until it was a bruised apple that

death refused to eat,

until Lazarus rolled out of the tomb

and started dry-heaving --

He just continued to roll all the way to Lexington,

a city of strangers where he could reinvent himself

as the movie character he’d always wanted to be.

He pulled off his wings and fell into a category.

The gold-headed angel all porcelain skin and Aryan eye,

who screamed at the Void demanding self-realization

and then ran away, thumbs in his ears, afraid

of what he might be, and so decided to be

nothing --

who tried to cure his nothingness with Kentucky bourbon

and marijuana, his loneliness with a girl named Muffy,

and his holiness with conformity and therapy --

whose father was Dr. Asshole the winedrunk proctologist,

and mother a millionaire by inheritance.

They had no time for a son, much less three:

there’s asses to kiss and examine, patients

to pilfer, wine to swill, and $3 million mansions to

build and decorate entirely in Jimmy Buffet motifs --

They never noticed that the loneliness seraph had

become a desolate bomb.

He waited for the drop --

and dropped into a binge of teasticks, Puerto Rican

rum and Jim Beam, sat stoned and drunk watching

Naked Lunch and stared into pulsing strobe light

three hours for illumination,

dropped and dumped by Muffy who was moving

from Cincinnati to Boston to an Ivy League university --

parents uncovered the bourbon fifth he’d hid in

the bathroom, left there nearly as dry as

a week-old chicken bone.

They confronted him and he had nervous breakdown and

disappeared -- so, panic-voiced, they telephoned

the other seraphim with accusations, bitching,

and requests for assistance --

Two seraphs went searching for their brother and found

a lot of nothing, went to the door for a progress

report, and were told he’d been hiding the whole

time in the mansions other wing.

They asked his mother if he was alright.

She said "No." and slammed the door in their faces.

The goldenboy got stuck in psych ward and detox

and came out diluted by Zoloft --

no more passion,

no more talking until morning,

no more three-mile walks in sub-zero

December to get donuts,

no more ecstasies and transcendence,

no more feathers,

no more wings,

no more angel with his halo burning . . . .

They cured him of himself and left him to live as the tragic No More.

The bitter Chicago-born angel

who was a coffee-bean ground under father’s thumb

and brewed in the Catholic-school-machine,

who was clothed in distrust, self-doubt, and outrage,

and realized that these weren’t the

pretty things of popularity.

Who bore the dead weight of parents’ dreams on

a fragile back --

who was afflicted with the habit of thinking,

and frightened the other children away

with intelligence --

who was labeled "fagot" ‘cause he hadn’t a girlfriend --

who named his authoritarian father "Der Furher" --

who grew his hair long, and when ordered to cut it,

shaved his head, then stuffed the cut locks in a jar

and named it Gregory -- he constructed an absurdist

monument, a memorial for innocence.

The curmudgeon who questioned the status quo,

but acted apathetic for protection --

who swallowed thirty shots of Old Bushmills and

still didn’t feel it’s effects;

who from father’s bar stole the sacramental scotch

and vodka for the seraphim’s bibulous

weekends --

the fermented angel who guzzled his liquor alone after

school as an alcoholic Whiteout for the

erroneous lines typed by the day.

Who discovered that his actions mimicked his father’s,

then quit drinking in attempt to shift

the metamorphosis into reverse --

not cognizant of the fact that he was

traveling by train, not jalopy;

that the lever he gripped adjusted

his seat, not track’s rigid direction.

He rode the rails of resignation straight to St. Louis and

a Jesuit university so he could study himself


And the manic three-eyed angel

who came bearing spontaneity and experiment, preaching

the pretty in ugliness,

who came with Kerouac and beatness and Coltrane and

Miles Davis,

who was one of Jack’s dumbsaints with a Moriarty mind.

Who picked magic herbs from his garden, smoked them,

and received "an Aztec wall of vision" standing

arms raised under the autumn stars --

who with his seraphic brothers ran through the grocery

and screamed hysterical as they beat each

other with sticks of pepperoni --

who sat with his brother through dawn talking on

Buddha love narcotics writing and music --

who got caught with tea-seeds in his coat pocket

and mother asked why’d he keep the seeds

and he answered ‘cause they cause impotence

so she asked if he was having sex now

and he answered "Not necessarily, but

I plan to some day."

Who overdosed on downers and was found unconscious

under bed --

who was two weeks locked in Jewish psychiatric unit and

emerged with his madness intact, then started

haunting Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and

ended up twelve steps away from his halo,

addicted to the drug of recovery --

who used the monkey-wrench of Prozac to readjust his head

and bludgeon the dumbsaint to death.

The angel poked out his third eye and became a stranger.

Cowardly seraphim,

your downfall gives rise to questions:

Were your wings flimsy things of posterboard

colored gold and white for your

cameo role in the play?

Feathers of intricate design to stun the

faceless crowd?

A functionless airfoil you remove from your

back after the pageant’s

last act?

Were your haloes old pipecleaners that you

glued into loops and fastened

to back?

Were your holy robes only sheets with a hole

cut for head and tied at the

waist with a rope?

Poetry and nonconformity your characters’ lines?


 The Swing

The pine stands as

proud old prickly and

injured sentinel,

arm cracked then torn

from trunk by a boy

who thought the pine

was playground.

Youth always swings

from injuries.


Picked Clean

When will this all end?

Sitting alone in my car’s front seat

with a tragic song and a Camel

straight, a sixpack of beer and a

torn paper bag --

I’m consumed like a carcass by

the vulture of my thoughts, my

bones of inspiration picked clean

by the gluttonous beak of routine.

I sit and I smoke and I make me more numb.

Endings visit everything.


Two Poets In A Car, Trying Not To Fall In Love

Lips brush as strangers

in the hall, bodies as

summergarden vinery

entwine and combine

as one perfect

Daliesque entity.


Public Restroom Blues

It’s always after taking a

wet, sticky shit that the

toilet paper gets trapped in

the dispenser like a deer in

a snare, releasing it’s meat

in single-sheet coughs of

generosity. After five fruitless

minutes of wrestling the roll,

I resign myself to the futility

of fighting fate, refasten my

pants, and walk out of

the stall, the moist and

odiferous medium of feces

still nestled in the crease

between the cheeks of my ass.



Big Red Smokey Waltz

It’s as if I’ve been afflicted

with some good acid’s giggles --

after our conversations I replace the

receiver in it’s cradle then begin to

do the strangest things: Sunday,

after I hung up, I nuked four

smoked sausages, put the Cure

in the stereo, and danced around

the house to "Just Like Heaven"

while eating my meat; only

you can cause me to waltz with sausage.



My eyes are redwhite

and blue with black vision core --

been writing all night.



arms stretched and stuck,

pinned to splintery

machines of love.


Vision: March 22, 1996

March 22, 1996;

quarter after six on a blinding snowglow morning --

tail end of allnite thinkathon;

read me Sexton, Burroughs, and Jack,

wrote me songs and fiddled me strings hee-hee!

Spent hours poring over scruffy manuscripts,

sculpting wordful babies into wobbly-kneed gods --

vision came --

notebook bled into air, sanguine spill from spiral spine;

little blood puddles drifted up and away,

floated a few feet forward, and dissolved,

becoming one with the Nothing.



Trapped by dew-damp grass

in morning’s pre-dawn darkness,

the lightning bug blinked a

desperate farewell.



June ‘94 in rural England,

at Stratford-on-Avon,

I strolled through the

Tolkienesque British mist

in the Bard’s backyard garden.

It was seven A.M. and

I was waiting for the tour

of the house to begin.

Twenty minutes later, it started --

the PBS-like guide pointed

out wood-burning stove,

bardic old bed, and the

tiny hardwood table where

the sonnets and plays of

the legend were written.

I felt words sprout up

at the edge of my mind

and start to inch their

way into consciousness --

I sat down on a thick


wooden bench to my left,

opened my bag and

withdrew notebook, laid

it’s spiral-bound pages

on a battered table,

and started to chart

my thought-flower’s growth.

The heavy foot of tour

guide’s voice landed on

my infant plant of poem:

"Sir, I’m going to have

to ask you to please

not sit there."

I was writing at

Shakespeare’s desk.


On Dinner At D’Andrea’s

Lounge singers, muzak,

blackened ashtray; swirling smoke curls

over her shoulder.

She asks me to write.

My poetry pales in her glow.

She is shining.


At The Register

Listening to Beck’s "Odelay!",

and driving the ‘83 Accord dubbed

the Fellatio Machine up 127 North,

in transit to Barnes&Noble

to purchase a William Carlos Williams

book, I pulled into Sunoco and

pumped me ten bucks of

petro, then bolted inside to pay

for the carfood. There was one man

in front of me at the

register, nearly sixty, and his

hand held a burning J rolled fatter

than Mama Cass. He took a

drag, paid for his bottled

water, and walked out,




The berries ripen

on branches like fattening

calves for feathered packers.


To Ignore The Burn

The cartoon’s idiot voice

shook the speakers’ cones

and a black housecat

strutted past us.

Her hand stroked

the wide-rails of my corduroyed thigh

and I tried not to squirm --

difficult to avoid her wild gaze;

difficult to control the instinct in my hands;

impossible to ignore the burn sliding up my leg.


Pseudohaiku For Clock

neon eye stares,

shouting out the time

like some madman.


Sky Was Humping

I walked out of the cornerstore

and the latenight January sky

was humping either heaven or earth,

maybe both -- a cosmic menage-a-trois.

Sweat poured from it’s back

and the drops ran down my weary face.

They hit pavement with the sound

of ten-thousand plastic packing bubbles

popping in the night.

I pulled the keys from my pocket

and headed back towards the car,

laughing out loud at the rain.


The Pope Is Not Catholic

The Pope is not catholic.

Gandhi was catholic -- universal:

a Buddhist-Jew-Muslim- Hindu-Taoist-Christian

man of truth.

The Pope is not catholic -- only Roman.


How Now Everything

Strange, how now everything

has semblance or remembrance

of you.

How yappy Yorkshire terriers tear

heart and conjure tears;

how homes, though once familiar,

take on foreign tongues;

how every rose I

bestow invokes images of the

dried, weathered, worn and torn one

that kept night-watch from

the head of your once friendly bed.


betrayal pseudohaiku

strike, die, unnerve me.

leave me here to wither, burnt --

thirty silver coins.



stab me in the problem,

it all bleeds out sooner

or later.


Labor Day 1996

We sat in the grass of my Alma Mater,

Labor Day’s celebrations splattering

across night’s heavenly canvas

like thick acrylics.

Sarah half undressed, me milking a

bottle of beer and caressing her

tender skin -- belly and breast

and all in between.

We sat in desolate parking lots

and ate our greasy McCheeseburgers,

Miles Davis playing on the radio,

Sarah half asleep in the front seat,


the other couple with us sitting

and smoking, speechless.

Then to the lake, where we separated --

Sarah and I went into the woods,

made wild love in the green dew-wet grass.

I drove those three home

and made haste to Steve’s house;

where I killed the Killian’s and

played my guitar -- where I

donned a dress as a joke,

and watched World War II movies

while trying to write -- where

I stayed up all night, French-kissing

the Muse until morning’s light

shone through the windows, and

the crows began calling again.


In Booth At Perkins

Chain-smoking, coffee,

and bitter smiles --.we are records

by the needle scratched.



Second straight no-sleep

day -- there’s volumes to say,

but pen’s engine is stalled.




Racing With The Sun

Ten more hopeless pills

to help defeat the foe of sleep --

and like a pencil, the body is

ground down, leaving the mind

a finer point,

sharpening perception to provide

the insights that fuel

the engine of poem,

quieting the chatter

of consciousness

and permitting self’s purity

to drip from inkpen’s tip.

Today was made for racing

with the sun,

straining to remain one stride

ahead of time,

too exhausted to persist

but much too obstinate to quit.


Last Pall Mall

Smoked my last Pall Mall

until cherry burned fingers --

Was it worth the pain?






The Enlightenment Of David Koresh

Voice of David: O Great

who Am, exhausted

Holy Hoodlum

of the midwestern night,

tragic lover of women,

prophet, poet, and priest,

perpetrator of viscous

verbal murders and

treasons against

clergy, King,

and the cast

of his court --

Phantom of slumbering

parking lots,

swift thief of the marketplace,

engineer of roaring maniacal machines

of the American highway,

mad cackling leprechaun of Ft. Conservativille,

Mayberry, and Fulton Sheen madhouses,

gooney-goohoo guru

and Atman shaman-man,

Tathagata the terrible,

Jolly Jah the heavenly toker,

Bethlehem Baby, and

Bard of Scarlet Babylon,

how may I serve thee?

Voice of Divine: With a firm rhythmic grip and lather or Vaseline.


In Rainstorm With Regan

Her tattered denims

are as wet as the cracked road,

bluejeans loosely hang

on slippery hips,

her curved perfection barely








Driving into night --

this glassy plathjar’s my home

away from laughter.



Snow falling -- in the

leafless tree, a starling picks

at frozen berries.


Prayer To Our Lady Of The Mad

She smells of girl;

a timid Venus, a fragile flower,

the furious female --

mythical mad madonna --

She’s the forbidden fruit --

a quixotic queen for my Oedipus --

she’s wordful and wailful and weally quite wonderful --

a fit of giddy giggling at requiem --

She’s the shyly innocent snickering firetruck or

hydrant lipstick candy apple Crayola plastic of

some forgotten joyous toy roses are red-faced

blushing cousin kissing and touching and

grasping and groping and tearing and baring

breast and balls and inviting thighs in a

desperate and deviant eruption of erotic

exploration and "I dare you to dare me"-style

urgent limb-links --

the modern Mona Lisa --

the perfect Roman Catholic icon --

patron saint of the beautiful,

of the ruptured romance,

and of the bitter and bleeding hearted,

pray for us.






End Of Term

eyes MacIntosh apple red, greasy hair tangled and mangled --

ward off women with needley beard and staccato stutter speech --

caffeine and nicotine jitterbugging weak and groaning bones,

flogged and flustered muscles tendon-taut, and joints

crackle like infant ice on a December sidewalk.

abused reeking body, four days unbathed, seeking solace

in bed or bottle --

throttle the throats that ate my peace!


Cincinnati On Vine

sitting on top of a washing machine in the middle

of Sudsy Malone’s -- the bottles are empty and

the bottles are broken and the bottles are lonely

and their drinkers are dancing -- Saturday night

ska on the cigarette air -- Boots and boots and

more good boots stomping along to the upbeat

bounce -- girls’ skirts a splash of plaid in this

mad cess-pool of sweat -- I dive in to dance

and get bashed in the head by an elbow that’s

keeping the beat -- I dance and I dance

for as long as I can, then walk back to the

washer for a smoke and a seat.


Song Of Simon

Sheriff Simon Leis,

you’re the controlling swollen cock

that spits it’s thick-sticky seed over the

virginal belly of Beauty, ragefully

fucking her into bleeding and weary


Conquer that slobbering slutted cunt

who was Beauty --

teach that bitch about family values;

show her how big your community standard is.


After Snowstorm

sting and bristle --

crystalline thistle

glazing the streets.


Not Over Road

The gold Accord rolled not over road,

but on an inch-thick sheet of ice and snow --

south down 71, west along 64,

and then on US 231 car spun on highway’s

slickness like an oversized dradle,


slid across the surface and flipped

in the shoulder’s ditch,

skidded like a ski through the grass snow and mud,

then landed upright on a hill,

auto’s nose extending over edge,

the Honda now dead --

balanced on the precipice,

a prototype for the scales of disaster.


The Royce: 1:27 A.M.

I’m in the Royce that don’t roll,

a restaurant without chain,

with a "Dr. Who"-prop jukebox,

shiny new-fangled,

flashing an oversized

belt-buckle of selections --


here the "good stuff " has fat

and hair curls out of

Stetson hats and

mesh-back caps to

dirty-work-shirt collars that peek

out from black jackets.

It’s a smoking section with macaroni in the chili.



Requiem No.: Antebellum

I. Kiss me full of madness

and bury my sad bones.

I nearly killed us with my

curious hand, thus rusting

the trust that was forged

in the flame we lit in

your basement last winter,

rolling around on the floor,

Star Wars on the screen,

three in the morning, and

no thought of me leaving.

II. Now, two days unslept, I left this mess,

this aquiline mind behind the eyes

that held the shine we tried

to find in grinding our groins

together in those groan-moaning

games we played alone in


your home in days past, in

an antebellum union of you and I.

Will you light a lamp to lead me

out of the crying pines that stand in

the night as perches for ravens

and ladders to heavens that lie

inside the bonds we tied by

trying to die before we had

time to understand why we hide

beneath these haloes of pride,

these envious wings, and robes

woven and sewn with the twine of our lies?


Radiant, A Beacon

Down Temple Bar, O’Connell, and Grafton

and through St. Stephen’s Green,

her face and haunting smile loomed before me,

sad and radiant,

a beacon on the shore from which I sailed

and long now to return.

At O’Donaghue’s I sat and sucked down

whiskey and stout and stared at the

stained white top of the barrel

that served as table;

stared at the band as they played

their Irish folk;

stared at my cigarette’s burning glow

that smoldered like my insides,

all knotted up like a length of rope

at Boy Scout camp.

I spend my nights driving now --

tires scream frustration at

pock-marked pavement

and the stereo shouts blindly

into smoke-strangled air --

every song or hymn the speakers sing

is tribute to her beauty;

each melody a monument, a single brick

in the temple of her being.


And The World Disappeared

The last climactic act

replayed incessantly in his head --

her words, sweet and sad;

her tender embrace;

how both heart and breath

stopped as eyes locked and they

leaned in slow to share greater

truths with their lips --

love and passion overcame them,

powdery time dissolved in their mingled sweat,

and the world disappeared

in the fog of their longing.

The fog has yet to clear

and the world has yet to reappear --

and when he prayed,

his prayer was not for God’s,

but her ear.


Hands Nearly Snapping

We sat on the dusty hood of

my Camry, smoking and talking --

sat under the stars and insect-acned lights;

sat under one of August’s final skies

and the weight of the words we couldn’t say --

and I played the clown and sat

on her lap, rattling off my wishlist

for the coming Christmas;

an eight-year-old’s voice

from a broken man’s mouth --

and she giggled and held me

and I laughed along with her,

then stood to return to work --

and we kissed; lips moving in

smooth choreography, hands

nearly snapping the leash that

lashed them to the tree of decency.


Angelic Visions Of Suburbia #1:

Man in garage sweating over bloody

tortured daughter, praying quick with

a copy of "Home Surgery and Spot

Welding Made Easy".


Prayer Of Thanksgiving

This is all I’ve ever

hoped for: two eyes,

a nose, and birth at an

early age.


Self-Amusement Made Easy

1. Shave off somebody else’s eyebrows.

2. Learn to do embroidery using only your tongue.

3. Become a producer of geriatric pornography.

4. Protest the Roman Catholic Church for advocating the practice of cannibalism.

5. Learn all 214 cheeses native to France.

6. Count the brain cells at the mall.

7. Ask your local grocer if they carry Nipple Chips breakfast cereal.

8. Hand out bouillon cubes to children on Halloween.

9. Go to the police station and request a body cavity search -- again.

10. Shave off your pubic hair and staple it to your head.

11. Steal a midget’s hat and put it on the top shelf.

12. Plant a tree in your hair.

13. Get your torso pierced.

14. Sexually assault someone with rubber fangs.


Curiosity #17

Where is the front of your ass?

Curiosity #11

I’d been trembling and sick for two days. It’d come time to pull myself a little scam and pacify the sickness for a bit. I’d already stolen a doctor’s coat and ID badge, so I rippled on down to the hospital to procure some morphine for my tenderloin forearms. Feet drum-thumped over broken stony pavement studded with fresh shoots of green, each step growing more hurried than the last -- I could feel the sickness swelling like some polluted wave. After immeasurable minutes I finally stumbled upon a door -- in I went and WHAM!!!

"Dr. Ferguson, patient in labor in 210!" I couldn’t be found out, so off I went to 210 to deliver a baby. I walked in and there’s some chick laying there with her legs obtuse, and screaming like the Living God was twisting her nipples. She was a tasty young black thing, maybe twenty, with a hatchling’s head peeking out of her elastic egg.

I threw my full concentration into mining that rugrat -- and slowly but surely, the little lizard came slithering out. I glanced up at the girl and realized that the act of passing the kid had caused her head to be sucked down into her chest cavity. In an attempt to rescue the girl, I did the only logical thing -- if her head was sucked in as the baby came out, putting the child back inside of her should pop her cranium out of her torso, and then additional precautions can be made for the second delivery. I started to shove that shit back up her --

Husband: "What the hell you doin’, muthafucka!?!"

Me: "I must replenish your wife’s head, dear sir."

Husband: "You jackass stupid rat-soup-eatin’ honky muthafucka! Her head don’t need no replenishin’! Her afro wig’s just fallen down over her face!"

Me: "Indeed."

I tossed the wailing little fucker aside and bolted to the head of the bed to see what the fuck was actually happening -- there was only a black wig resting on a hollowed skull.




The holes are holy!

windows and doors --

huge holes in the wall --

providers of sight and passage

to new rooms and views

with distance, width, and mystery.

The holes the givers and takers --

holes in the ground

the holders

of fathers and lovers --

Hole in the lid the lender

of life

to fluttering lightning bug --

Holes in the sky,

Holes in the night

are stars.

On This Scrotum

The trees are but hairs on

this scrotum called earth;

we’re just the crabs God

is trying to scratch.


Open Legs, Screaming Lips

beating off in

immaculate bathrooms --

I’ve never felt so all alone and smile-dry --

to kill you now would be a sin, I’ll wait a week

and find the virtue.

we, junkies and queers in mayflower police states.

Sheriff Leis’s got a hardon for Maplethorpe babies --

I’ve got one for a thousand teary girls.

we, who spend our nights screwed up on junk,

stroking dreams of open legs and screaming lips --

wet heavens.

In summer all the virgins died --

beating off in

immaculate bathrooms.

In summer all the virgins died --

finding God in

immaculate bathrooms.

we’re stuck in this poor German town

with whoring mayors and nazi gamesmen,

blind judges and deaf-mute bishops,

swarmy Catholics all tied up in rosaries.


I spent an indelible naked night

perched on a young Italian girl,

sucking hay like a famished warhorse

and tender throat like a cool parasite.

stories spent on homophobes float

like marble in week-old

semen --

intuitive glance showed me

shiny new fields

filled with graffiti lords,

naked to the weekend highway,

tossing off clothes like a tortured

spear, aching for camaraderie

of a new stranger, prettier

than the last.


I’ve been out for a hit

since I kicked that habit.

Love was God’s junk,

woman a fresh spike,

and I ain’t scored since

London lost me

to the sun.

I’ve been lookin’ --

beating off in immaculate


no angels in the coffee,

no buddhas in the gathering.

we feasted in honor of

our past lives --

we, who spent our nights doused

in porno flicks

and timid gropings.

us’ve grown weary of squinty eyes

and suspicious sayings --

I’ll take what you give me

and exult in my own.

Simple Simon -- the kids need their vitamins

Simple Simon -- ban that jazz, ban that razzmatazz.

This is your town! C’mon Simon, turn us upside

down and flip around and suck a cock for all

the young Republicans.

This is fucking America!

We can suck cocks!


Fallen Fools

Yesterday o yesterday

oh where’s the day

who walked away?

are you crumpled and crinkled,

crushed like a discarded newspaper

laying dead in the parking lot of a grocery store?

Are you stomped and chomped and in the


extinguished like a spent cigarette?

What fateful death awaits you?

You always were the type to die on April Fools Day.

I should’ve known;

I’ve always known;

prove me wrong,



Man Thinking On Past Lover

He contemplates life in

this age of inversion --

with greasy hair and yellowed

fingers, head bathed

in the filth of betrayal.

He can remember her climax --

fond yesterdays of

gracious spasms --

bright convulsions of acceptance,

dim shrugs of understanding.


The Riddle She Wore

He was snared by her eyes --

lassoed in a glance both innocent and obscene --

tangled in the mystery that hung from her shoulders

like a gown.

He waited for something that he couldn’t define --

a magic formula, a newly magnetic aura,

some way to unravel the riddle she wore.

Alone, he stewed in a coward’s broth,

convinced that tomorrow she would

understand. He reached out to catch her

beauty and found he had no hands.

Tomorrow’s just a myth.

Like Libidinous Birds

He pulled the car into motel’s parking lot --

out they got and walked into the office.

He wore a hunter green camel hair jacket,

black pants, and a pair of cordovan wingtips.

She was wrapped in second skin of ruby-hued

velvet and her curves were seduce-me-blue

music, a lonely saxophone note hanging on

the air of an August night.

He laid his forty dollars on the counter and

the man handed him the key to room 433 --

they stood pressed together in front of wall’s mirror,

he behind she, arms wrapped around,

hands meandered over breasts,

then migrated south like libidinous birds

and lifted the hem of her velveteen skin;

the serpentine girl shed her red

to show new shades of pink;

she turned around;

he knelt down at that altar and

traced novenas with his tongue;

slipped between her lips a finger ringed

with sterling Virgin Mary;

threw her to the too-firm bed

and performed more of his

sleight-of-tongue tricks,

then slid into her slipp’ry silkgrip

and added both the ones to achieve a single two.


They performed their golden eagle dance,

free-falling with talons locked,

trusting in each other to know the crucial second,

missing the earth by an inch,

then op’ning wings to scale the wind

and throw the world beneath them.


Deciduous Me

O, deciduous me!

It’s time to stand as pine

and keep green needles

to drink in the light.

I’m always losing my leaves

and left naked all winter;

seeing the sun but unable

to taste it, skeletal and frigid,

without a way to absorb

the warmth.


An Elegant Concept

Listening to Mozart’s "Requiem",

it seems an elegant concept:

composing your own death mass

shortly before your Exit --

premonitions of death spiraled

through my head and I wrote

my own wordful requiem;

I just keep forgetting to die.


A Clouded Algebra

The rain falls like mournful

drops from the eyes of my fathers;

crying for what I’ve become

and the path I must tread;

for the sentence that I serve

in the prison of feeling,

for the blue my eyes conceal

and the way I hold my pen.

I’m searching for Shambala

wearing glasses sans lenses,

figuring for "x" using numbers

I’ve invented, solving cross-eyed

equations that always equal one.

Where are the figures of sense and

who’s living in my crowded skull?

What is that dream I can’t remember?

Why do I feed upon the moon?



My Stratocaster’s sprawled across the lawn chair --

the concrete Virgin Mary statue lays on it’s back

in the still-dead flowerbed, a breeze

up it’s dress, deflowered now by the

wind --

Old Glory flaps it’s tattered stripes in the sun-drunk

air --

a honeybee’s precariously perched on the syrupy

rim of my drink, balanced on the cup’s

white plastic lip, nervously sauntering

along the line between drowning and

desire --

a mother robin pecks the ground, sticks her face

in the dirt, and searches for a worm to

vomit back up for her young --

Curiosity #12

Why is catsup always "fancy" ?


In The Anxious Sky

The stars are being eaten

from the sky --

handfuls swallowed whole by

the cities’ insatiable neon,

a countless amount consumed

by the smokey beast

of industry --

Orion’s martial belt is being

gnawed on by a tailpipe;

the virgin’s vestal dress

torn by a streetlight’s

lustful teeth;

the constellations

dismantled by a wrench

of convenience.






Photographs Stare

The old photographs stare

out from their frames like

caged creatures at the zoo --

moments captured to serve

as reminders for the mind

and targets for the eye --

unflinching and reliable,

the smile is always there

and the loved one never dies.

Robe Was Not Woven

The vacant shell of casket’s corpse

proved to me that the soul exists --

I saw my grandma before the funeral

and it wasn’t her stretched out

in that white spectral box;

it was some leathery mannequin

wearing too much perfume,

her sunken, bony face caked

with tasteless make-up,

the glow not only dim now

but extinguished, radiating

nothing from her core --

old NaNa was a nova with a

shine all wrapped around her,

and that robe was not woven

by body or mind;

it’s they that die,

not the mystery-glint that glimmers

in the iris of the eye.

Sermon On The Mount

There’s a foot-and-a-half high statue

of Jesus revealing Sacred Heart anchored

atop small rock pile in backyard’s

circular flowerbed --

cemented to stone to prevent wind’s

heretical breath from knocking this

concrete Christ into mulch, dead leaves,

and mud below him --

mounted to his miniature Mount,

he gives his sermon to the grass

and other plants that surround him,

but not a sound escapes those

immobile, stony lips.


the ant

struggling under impossible labor, he surges on,

bearing fruit and redemption to lazy queens.

dodging terrible footsteps and child’s looking glass,

he surges on, hard-armored and precise.


Glance To A Gaze

My eyes made their rounds of the room

like a machine-gun lawn sprinkler --

over Catholic-school-green heater’s edge dangled

a pair of perfectly curved and fluid legs --

my glance turned to gaze;

the stare staggered up her body’s swerving road

and froze at the oasis of her face --

she was a misplaced angel;

the white of her skin was like the silken, pale

shine of candlelight behind clouded glass,

her hair the kind of golden warm that only children can imagine,

and her innocent emerald eyes were filled up to their lids

with infuriating riddles.

Stained Glass Faces

My parents always took me to

Saturday mass when I was a kid --

I saw faces in the stained-glass patterns

and believed that the Eucharist was

slices of banana handed out at intermission;

the crown of thorns enthralled me

and the crucifixion hypnotized,

though I was always more enamored

with the Roman and his spear;

enchanted by his brutish look of violence,

infected by his predatory germ.







I’ve wasted my life waiting at red lights --

finger clinking Zippo open, it’s wheel spinning ‘gainst

flint to spark the fluid-wet wick into flame that

kisses cigarette’s tip while mouth inhales from

other end and fills both lungs and throat with a

burning cloud of habit --

digging through backseat’s shitheap for a cassette-tape

whose music isn’t as stale as baguette that’s

been stripped of plastic bag and left to sit on

kitchen table --

scanning the channels for a tune that suits me;

hoping for a signal that proclaims it safe to carry on.


On Sidewalk In Chicago

Ahhh...... sweet jazz, beautiful women,

hot damn, could be heaven --

thick-hipped black women

and mad-minded derelicts,

city stripped to the bone,

this is real and true --

hot black streets

and corner jazz and blues,

the town and its music

are women sweaty in heat,

raging hormonal, bucking hips;

good pure american city

wrapped in filth and grime

like a bag-lady madonna.

ave maria.

ave maria.



America -- voracious collector of pavement and withered dreams,

left hand of the devil, it wasn’t Pandora but

Columbus who opened the box of the Beast --

America -- you’re standing on another man’s planting land --

you pillaged his rivers and factored his forests --

remember Karma, America --

America -- you’re a puzzle pieced together by pride and pain,

your soul leaked out through the creases --

America -- land of the niggerschincsspicsandmics with

toes in both oceans, tied tight between glacier

and flame, you’re a boiling stew -- your

ingredients are pulling apart and forming

their factions --

America -- why ignite yourself like neon sexshop signs?

you’ve lost all sense of mystery and the beyond --

America -- your flags wave out of duty, not desire --

Can’t you rekindle their drive and their fire?

America -- your old men are picking through garbage cans

for food -- What about your bounty?

America -- you’re a junky -- there’s permanent needles

pricking the jugular Ohio, even more in

arterial Mississippi -- your strained veins pulse

and pound with gasoline and fine white cocaine,

your heart is turning itself inside-out with

hidden bombs and secret soldiers -- there

are mad commanders hidden in the corn --

America -- you’re a fagot asshole greased with Vaseline --

America -- your days are dim and fleeting --

America -- I plead to you to shatter your soul cages,

the pages hold the keys --

America -- you’re a blind man or an imbecile,

never knowing your treasures --

you’re suffocating your prophets with greedy

green paper pillows --

Now I call on your America -- glorify the poet as priest

of the everlasting, untie and take the gags

and rags from mouth and hand and hold

the microphone for us while we stand in

chorus and trumpet:

"I am ME and me be FREE!"


The feline’s night

is exploding with

hidden visions.


Nine Dollars And Sixty-Seven Cents

Started the first dollar-earning work I’ve done in months,

sacrificed my life of coffeepot camaraderie

and lonely latenight writing --

For nine dollars and sixty-seven cents

I’ve rented out my contentment like

a motel room with an hourly rate;

and come morning , the sheets that

took me a month to clean are rank

smelling and stained all over again.

For nine dollars and sixty-seven cents

I’m lifting seventy pound mailsacs and

pitching them down the steel slide,

where they’re gutted like green canvas

fish and their insides sorted according

to destination, size, and nationality.

I blister and skin my fingers on the belt,

pulling off packages and piles of loose letters,

blackening my hands like a holiday bird,

and sweating myself as dry as burnt toast.


Wandering Through London, Summernight

The night is clothed in intrigue;

like a cigarette clenched and glowing

in the mouth of a shadow.

We Wee

Scenes of silly frat boys caught with their pants down,

playing with their tennis balls and speed rounds

and microscopes --

Make mine a telescope!

We wee poets, we solemnly fondle our semantics

and sarcasm, pump our pens, and laughingly baffle

all of the doctors --

We(e) drops of whiskey,

us chemical cons,

we congregate together

these crazy days.



The sun hung between the clouds

like a tacky gold medallion

shining out from an open shirt --

a brilliant yellow disc

to assault the passing eye.





O withered rose petal,

before you flutter to the ground,

remember that you’re hers now

and belong not to the earth.


Looting The Tomb

Was it instinct or addiction

that led me back to this creekbed

to walk upon it’s mossy rocks?

What is this compulsion

to feel winter’s frigid whip

of wind crack against my cheek,

to camouflage my hands

with fragrant mud?

The blackthorn cane I bought in Dublin

dug up bones of an animal

that had forgotten it’s name and structure,

this Humpty Dumpty’s time-stained shellbits

laid there deconstructed and jumbled

among the acorns, twigs, and deadsoggy leaves.

I collected the remains

of the body’s collapsed frame

and put them in my jacket --

there was a feeling of weird power

when I stuck those fleshless bits

of death into my nervous pocket --

a scalpel blade of clarity sliced through

mind’s skin and I split-second glimpsed

into the open wound:

I learned that I’ve lived through each forever

and will never cease to be;

that nothing has ever died;

that death cannot destroy,

only rearrange the shapes --

it’s unbending metal hangers

to unlock the bedroom door.





A Desperate Shine

The bloated moon sat at the

edge of the sky like a swimmer

who was too timid to jacknife

through the water’s chill --

she straddled the red-faced horizon

like a child on a tree limb

and taunted the daylight

with her lazy, cratered form --

as the sun slid behind the distant hills

and night’s black-eyed blue tapestry

was being hung across the sky,

a prankster’s hand or loss of balance

uprooted fat Luna from her perch --

she tripped over the stars

and stumbled up the sky;

she clung to evening’s fabric

and hung from the darkness;

she dangled in the black,

drunk with terror,

and her stonyscarred face

reflected a silvery light.