Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A Memoir for A Stranger, My Private Confession

In some way I knew. I had it all figured out. On the morning of my twenty fourth birthday; I became Death. It was a sort of apprehension, a feeling, there really wasn't any room for doubt, no room for the imagination to run wild filling in the blanks of a conjured sort of bump an old house might make on a particularly windy night. Nothing of the sort. I just knew. The sun was warm that morning. I suspect it might have awoken me. I remember feeling calm. That day really was a day just like any other, it'd be a lie to say I remember it all very clearly. It all progressed as otherwise expected, with of course, the exception, of that one very odd little fact. Work was incredibly busy, It didn't really leave me a lot of room for idle thought.

That night I made a particularly uncharacteristic effort to catch the news. I'm not sure if I was surprised or not. There had been a bad traffic accident, at least two people were dead. What would you think? Would that be evidence for or against my morning epiphany?

I guess in a way, I had to have known what was coming, and so I decided to believe. As time passed I came to my own sort of understanding and it was as follows: despite the lack of any particular effort in the pursuit of it, I had become the world's absolute worst mass murderer. No contest. Sobering thought isn't it?

That night I decided that I would no longer watch the news, not that I ever really did before. Yelling "Over here!" when a crying family appears on the camera wondering aloud why tragedy strikes really wasn't the sort of macabre humor I could bring myself to. I guess I wasn't a very funny Death. I'd like to think I wasn't a very mean one either.

Only once did I try to soften the blow. He actually worked in my office. His retirement party was only a few weeks away, and so once more deciding to act uncharacteristically, I went out of my way to befriend him. He wasn't married, slightly overweight, practically alone in the city. A painfully average man for his age, but still no otherwise majorly obvious cause of death. I agreed to take some time off to travel with him and if you can imagine counting down the days I'm sure you can imagine it wasn't very pleasant. Still, we had fun. The last place we visited was a quiet beach: sleepy, quaint, and decidedly off season.

They asked me to speak at his funeral. It was a relatively small affair, some family, a few old friends that had fallen out of contact. Can you imagine the irony? I felt awful. Wouldn't you? That moment had made it real. Real may not be the right word for it, tragedies on the news are real too. Faint and distant they don't really effect us. No, I guess a better word would be reality. It had become a reality I was now truly aware of.

It wasn't too long after that I just so happened to happen across you. I assure you it was purely chance; crowds passing crowds. I had known how you would go, and I'm sorry to say that after my experience I just couldn't forgive you. It was an unforgivable waste. You can't make change with time and you certainly can't give it out to the more wanting. Perhaps I was meddlesome. I'd like to think that waking up on that hospital bed you're feeling a little uncertain. Maybe though, you feel just like I did, and so I wrote you a letter.

It'd be a relief for you to feel grateful to me for having given you a bit more time to rethink your decision, but in reality I have given you a terrible curse. I do not think I'd mind it very much if you hated me. Let me just say that I now know for certain that nobody would ever stay Death for very long. With this formal apology that reads a bit like a life story, I'm wishing you the best.

I do not know what you believe, but from my perspective, this may be the only chance you get to truly change things. In my experience fate is a terribly scary thing. This may be the one hickup in the way things happen. A very real magic trick, a copout that leaves a curse. It's up to you now to decide what's next. Who's next. I wouldn't squander it. I really have played an awful trick and won't even be around for you to get even. Well, maybe you don't need to. You can laugh knowing even Death gets a funeral and I can tell mine will be quite soon enough. It would seem after all, that the price of Death is death. It's all rather poetic. I like that. I think death should be poetic, beautiful. Knowing may be a blessing or a curse, I'll leave it to you to decide. Even so I wish you well.

With Sincerity,

Your one time guardian angel,

Death (former)

Saturday, November 16, 2013

And Sisyphus Toiled

And Sisyphus Toiled...

Sisyphus was no sissy
As Zeus up high was never wont to realize,
Sisyphus was keeping count
And beneath forlorn sigh at task reset
Belied a maddened grin of reckless ambition.
Zeus could never know the man at perpetual bottom of ever fleeting top.
He would never comprehend the stolen fire of that man's heart.
With certainty time did pass, and Sisyphus did toil, his count did grow,
And on and on and on forever here and ever after,
Was there again and again snatched victory at the jaws of defeat.
For every hour the record grew:

And Sisyphus Toiled....

Thursday, November 7, 2013



a toilet a bowl

stenching human alchemy

brown dandelion

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Dance Macabre

The Dance Macabre

She announced with a loud cry

the start

of the dance of masks

but she was far too late

they had already begun

the people

went about their days

as all days before

and all days since

in brutal abjective harmony...



I have seen your reflection

your hypocrite smile

taunting in jest

the world.

light's illusion

may play its stringent tricks

but i see

the real you:

my unwanted



A seven year crime

would be a pittance

to pay

so i would not push

your luck.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

The Flood

The Flood

the play of water

the trickling lights

worries the bones

whips and whirls

solidly conducts

your fossil self...

if we could only move

if we could only breathe

if this were not water:

a gentle breeze

a playful melody, the rustling of hair

not the embalming grasp

not the deep resounding bass: bohm! bohm!

but air

the mere semblance of it

the end of drownings: freedom

but there is only water

and i fear the ship cannot hold.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The Things I Saw

The Things I Saw
                Dirty bar and me sitting in it watching that day go by. Looking to my left I see old bear drinking his oranges, not a care in the damn world and I say to myself “Damn.” This world keeps on spinning us passengers all unawares. Looking to my right, that old bartender looking like something out of a silent movie, a western one at that, asks if I want another, and I nod and he nods and that whole process repeats once more with him pouring and I wondering if I should offer thanks. I do of course and take in what’s before me, it's bitter but I make do because the lord knows we can’t complain about what’s made free. And still that bear sits drinking his oranges.
                Getting up I wobble to the old jukebox and ask it for a song, and of course it complies and we would all get to dancing, if we knew how to dance, but still we get something going and it’s all rather fine. I’m feeling good listening to that box spout its funny tune and I begin wondering just what it would take to make such a funny machine emit such funny sounds. Caught in that reverie there’s a tap on my shoulder and looking to my left I spy Old Dracula smiling. Dracula’s smiling his fang smile, and I imagine my smile might be a sort of a wild fang smile itself, we laugh off the good times together at the usual table and people come and go wondering just what kind of people two stranger regulars like us would get up and about to talk about on a Saturday sunset such as the one we’re now viewing.
 And that was fine, because we were fine all thinking Hemmingway and wondering just what that old man must be up to and what he would say, and what we would say back. For a while we decided that moving beats still, and getting up that old silent cowboy sepia humming bartender put the whole damn bar into motion. It was strange but it was also fine and me and Dracula found it mighty funny how the whole situation had played out
It wasn’t till later, long after that whole reverie of feeling and motion watching the sun sink into that hidden hole in Ireland, that the others arrived. It was a tough shift to go from something so deep to something so crazy, but it was also fine with old Ben Franklin making speeches and the rest of the congregation shocked into listening while preoccupied with little events here and there of their own.
And it was wild but it was also fine, me and Dracula now joined by Mumrah, now off from work,began discussing whatever of Ben’s thoughts most peaked our interest and there were a great many things to speak about. We spoke and we listened and we spoke again and noticing that Ben was done, we called him over to our table to discuss whatever tickled our fine fancies.
And it was fine us laughing hard at one another’s foolishness and looking off to my left what did I spy, but Old Fred Bear still drinking his oranges. I called him over and together we laughed and laughed and laughed. Oh the things I saw and what I could tell you.



Flip of the Coin
We think of the man who stepped on the butterfly and elected Hitler
as a cautionary tale,
but what if that butterfly fixed our economy?
He’d be a God-damned hero.

Person Watcher
Sometimes I find ‘People Watchers’ indecisive as a whole.
This however may be their saving grace,
Because ‘Person Watching’ is illegal.

English Major
My professor once said: “you do not become an English Major because you like to read.”
Perhaps he was right, but from someone who does not particularly enjoy reading,
I imagine it certainly helps.

There are times when people will
Get the urge to shock themselves into new experiences.
Extroverts will do something crazy.
Introverts will go outside.

Who Nu?
So I found these healthy Oreos.
They’re still bad for you.

Selling a poem is much like selling a piece of yourself,
Only nobody will pay for it,
And it is highly legal.

True Fear
When asked what one fears most, I feel we rarely betray ourselves.
For Instance when asked, I might say Responsibility;
When what I really mean is Spider-Baths.

There is absolutely no way in the world.
To go up stairs.
And not look like an idiot.

Just Stop
If jogging in place did anything,
It wouldn't be necessary to leave your house.

Yahoo Comments
If I had a dollar for every sly attempt at humor at the expense of politicians I read on a
Yahoo News comment board,
I would still owe exorbitant student loans.

Cheetos are the most sadistic of snacks.
They shame you with the mark of orange cheese fingers,
Smugly knowing that you will be back for more.

Christmas Miracles
So the legend goes that one Christmas a poor family was not able to afford to decorate their tree, so God creating a miracle, had spiders spin brilliant silver webs among the branches.
It was certainly a nice gesture, but perhaps it was also a warning as to what might happen,
If you fail to decorate your house.

An Endless Moment's Failure At Living
I'm the kind of person who sets their alarm to the wrong am or pm,
Rushes out of the house,
and in a huff,
arrives only to realize,
that I'm 10 minutes early.
When I am actually 30 minutes late.

4’s goes to wars

4’s goes to wars

There were Three Kings
And Four Chores
Now all’s we have
Are Wars.


Do you know,
Those Little Russian Dolls?
The Stackers?
The Cannibals of each their smaller size,
Their inverse expulsion to once more be laid bare?
How they might be like people,
With our many masks?
Each one removed,
To find another beneath?
More or Less hidden?
How when all is excised,
You find nothing inside.
What was missing I wonder,
The Smallest Piece?
Some kind of cosmic joke,
To find yourself the onion,
In a store full of mangos.