Sugar Noses

Spring whistles at winter groping it
Via screeching taxi drivers
Wheels feeling the unclad
Pavement up and down
Melting tar and smell scattering
Noses like sugar
Rays of light
Peel off winter and go
Burlesque turning peep shows
Into squint fests
Couch old enough to sip whiskey
All night gets tossed outside
To make small talk with a fickled
Spring breeze
Chocolate shakes
Ice gets creamed
They don’t mind being in season

from Car Sick from Circus Peanuts


Nap Time

Big lake like a sodium free ocean
Skinny boy body bereft of bad
Mud-slinging breaks the surface
Of August morning water we want
To be clean and calm light sifting
Its sharp fingers through us

Making us young and less pink
Skin taught by the sun
Building dirt castles
Where water meets our clocks

Stand still little boy and be taut
Preparing for an altruistic battle
With unknown forces pulling sand
From lazy old beach head
Lake, pool, ocean of the
Primordial snooze
The sleep of the dead

Two hours breaks the sun in half
Spring forth bulbous birth
Keep the body of water and flesh
Playing in the fountain with youth

from Fat Poet Dies in Grain Elevator Accident & Other Poems


The Candidate

Sniffling down a back country road
Heels digging in, gravel scraping
Brown patent leather shoes fresh
From a misguided campaign
Hands shaking

Country smells like a determined spring
Ring through the nose
The pig don’t rut
Shade of the magnolias keep
Blood from boiling beautiful
bad dream turned real

Shot to the gut
Lead and flesh and silent organs
Curtsey and dance uncomfortable
Waltzing and pulling unfriendly
Arm in arm not knowing

What had you done
Slow crawl to a kudzu grave
Sunshine on your forehead
Taste of blood and spring in your mouth
Now you start to know

from Fat Poet Dies in Grain Elevator Accident & Other Poems


Breaking Up with the Living

Death unto my eyes comes from a distance.
Hurry and wait like renewing
Your license to be.
No frail painted endings can be seen from my fire.
No tears for a lucky number.
Winter stumbles in like a drunken trapper
Not knowing to be sad. The day ends
With a fuse bright that doesn’t look back.
Not of my heaven on earth
Shall I go. Dust like those before.

Touched you small.
Time stops
Not for those who ask politely
Then pressing autumn leaves
To a familiar ground. I have come
To think of you on this day
Don’t worry for me
Safe and away my part has been played
Go today and embrace
The sun or the rain. It’s still there
Beside you I rest,
We move on with a nod.
It’s not you, it’s me.
I’ll call you.

from Car Sick from Circus Peanuts


Marry Me

Down by the creek doors always open
I said marry me
You said ferry me
To the other side of this wide life
You’ll be my wife
Little white church
In a green green field

Dancin’ in the aisles when the prayin’s done
Rippin’ an’ shoutin’ like the Lord wanted
Us ta have fun til the morning sun
Sunday’s here, Saturday’s gone
But you and I can’t be wrong
Down by the creek doors always open

Pretty pretty woman
Gonna be my bride
Goin’ down that river side by side
Dressed in white
My heart high like a kite
Pull my strings

Dancin’ in the aisles when the prayin’s done
Rippin’ an’ shoutin’ like the Lord wanted
Us ta have fun til the morning sun
Sunday’s here, Saturday’s gone
But you and I can’t be wrong

Doors always open
Put on those rings
Down by the creek
Find what you seek
Little white church
In a green green field

Stands so quiet for us to arrive
Then makes us dance when the prayin’s done
Floors creakin’ to the beat of our hearts
Just like the good lord wanted done
You and I have become one

Little white church
In a green green field


from Wanna Be a Rock-Star, Can’t Play a Gui-Tar


Goddamn Miller

Please set up the cannon to be shot in the early morning
The Governor is coming to town and we care
Not a bit to drill the new fuse hole
Find the cannon red and blue steel buried under dirt and
Time up on Miller’s homestead.
Why can’t goddamn Miller control his boys
It was probably the middle one – what’s his name –
Tommy – he’s got a four year old son and the mother
Lives down by Manchester near the airport
If Tommy could hold a job that little boy could
Have what the others do
Stealing cannons is all the Millers ever seem to do
Tommy’s grandfather stole it
His father didn’t
He did
Not that I care but I don’t even know if he has
A job
And two out of three millers stole
The cannon
not properly working in over 150
Go by and see the boy
Try not to mention the cannon

from Car Sick from Circus Peanuts


Young Forest

Cowering before the gangly young woods
Enter and be freed by sapling twigs
Biting the side of a frost captured face
Taste the frozen palette of the bright
Colorless world painted by blushing winds

Enter and be claimed by life and death
Co-mingling on a forest floor
The crunch of death is buoyed
By the sparkle and snap of life
Enter and be new by the quiet
Punctuated by the drum roll of a grouse
Welcoming by moving away
Tucking a crisp untamed naïve aire under wings

Enter and be not judged
By the young inhabitants
With only growth and sky on wooden minds
Running rings around us
Dreaming of straight and narrow poplar ideas
Don’t hesitate at the cusp
Age from within and be a part
Play a part in something bigger
Make your way
Into the center of solitude
Enter and be you

from Fat Poet Dies in Grain Elevator Accident and Other Poems


She cut her teeth on diamonds and fire
She was the love of my strife
Held her near as horses trampled
By elegant and emaciated
Veins of red ice frozen still
Estranged from tomorrow
Tethered to yesterday’s gone

She was my kingdom
I was her scene and electricity
Of the human kind
Enough energy to keep sharks away
Not enough to move it forward
Like winter in May
We said nothing and looked away
Secretly crafting a plan
To see spring one day

We remember each other’s guises
Better than the memories
Hoofs beat sawdust of the circus
The three rings
Life love hope
She put on three shows a day
Made me a high wire balance act
We were together like stars and night
She was gone in bad weather
Disappearing like a tangent

from Fat Poet Dies in Grain Elevator Accident and Other Poems

Gotta Look

Hey you with your books
Don’t gimme your looks
Off your high horse
And talk to the pawns
We don’t live in fastidious times
Puttin’ down hideous rhymes
But to get to the point
We’ve gotta look around
To get to the truth
We’ve gotta be found
Love is like
The longest hike
A blackboard with writing
Two kids play fighting
The tide and the moon
Makin’ an agreement
Dove being sent
You paying rent
Cherry bombs
With a vodka furnace
It’s gonna churn us

Hey you with your books
I’ve got my hooks
And ladders that shatter
The windows above
The mercury will give ya a shove
Fire on the second floor
Kills the third floor
Fire on the first floor
Squatter on the dirt floor
Bustin’ up chifferobes
Dancin’ like Hazel Motes
The prophet dotes

Hey you with your books
Call ‘em chefs or call ‘em cooks
When the sun hits the pan
Egg’s gotta fry
When the boy hits the street
Mama’s gonna cry
Love is like
A cruise missile
Gotta blow the whistle
Lay in my bed
Of silk and thistle
Held back by the bottom
Pushed down by the top
You’ve got your presidents
But we’re the residents

Hey you with your books
What’s your favorite hymn
This life is crooked
It needs a shim
Sham is to the public
Shiv is to the rhetoric
Wake before you go
To sleep
Shut up before you go
To weep

Hey you with your books
It’s your move
Queen me with your rooks
Catch your breath
Take my breath
Knock this world
Inside out
Books make the route
Move over
Hey you move over
I’m comin’ up
I’ll eat those books like fire
Spit out the words
My mouth’s for hire

Hey you with your books
I’m comin’ up
I’m givin’ the looks
And makin’ them mine
It’s all gonna be real
Real fine.

from Wanna Be a Rock-Star, Can’t Play a Gui-Tar

The Refrigerator

The refrigerator is rotten
It’s shiny and stainless
Stealing glances from the stove
Upright and dependable
But cold and keeps to itself
Lately a smell emanates
From beneath its non-sentient seething
When questioned it remains
Impervious and above reproach
What’s going on
What are you hiding
I scream, not caring
It outweighs me and gives
Ice that I depend upon
For drinks that give me courage
To scream at it
Is it you
Who are you
Vegetables, meats
Don’t make me come in there
You need to cooperate
You damn rotten refrigerator
I need more ice

from Fat Poet Dies in Grain Elevator Accident & Other Poems

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