Why search for meaning?

We live in meaning

Surrounding us but not beyond

Calcified Krystle’s bathtub rings

Autocorrected my crystals

to a possessive feminine

Authority entitled to everything

Whatever it meant to me

The truth of what I see

Shares held space with

The truth of what you see

Locality and layering

Coats of paint are not a building

The foundation equality of being

Residue of everything true

The purpose of man is two:

Make more of you.

What is left of life

What did you do

It is like something

To be the crust

The husk of trust

The skin of the pudding

Herniated disks exploding

The relativistic speed of us

At the edge about to pop

Stretched to infinity

And the second thing

Is stick together

if life matters

as always or never

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Mint Cadillac Chip

The mint Caddy daddy bought stock

Chip off a cracked block

And a busted distributor cap

A seizure in the piston gap

Not bored true enough for you

Overheard words of the absurd

Carbon fiber fly wheel comes standard

Spin up to warp speed in a hiccup

All day long I called for defense

Score from midfield no touchbacks

Broke tackles to safety in the end zone

Andretti Lorenzo Bugatti Enzo end so

Qualquier comenzó a trend so

Easily discarded as the car did the horse

And the entertainment professionals

As it were, usurped the honest whores

Sephora trades with drawn swords

Blame everything else but yours

And the dynasty comes crashing down

But the literal dynasty is still all around

It’s everywhere that gathers power

Potential resources for unspecified uses

Slush funds of ungodly sums

When you choke it comes

When they leave you die

A cross point arrow head pulled out

Of your mouth hole alien face hug

Infected with space bugs

Scurvy of touch in a little jewel frog

Skinny legs and sharp claws

The devil rests his case and calls

Into the abysmal ball pit from the

long range missile pulpit

Everyone else with locked jaws

Cocktails in the cockpit

Of a jumbo jet load of bullshit

Fire off unofficial spokesman with torch lit

Run down at the corner of Main Street

See unfit for leadership types

With ancient gripes

The whole cloth tyrants

The bloody sleepless nights

Killing for convenience is alright

Protect interests in another state

Stop when it’s too late to fix it just nix it

Mix it in with the fakeness

of cry bully wakeness

Woke is broke and blameless

Innocence is shameless

Nameless here for evermore

Call it healthcare call it murder

Either way you earn the future

The dystopian hysterical culture

Is a suture slipping out of the great wound

Infected by cannibal mothers

Monsters, high priests of the Others

A fake wife to make life equal to nothing

Crown princes of lies and we suffer

Until the end of our time

50 minutes an hour for trust

Half that for lunch

The gears grind on through the rust

Years hang on like crust

On the mantle of tectonic upthrust

Sinkholes swallow villages whole

Dead dunes blow over our homes

The sands of paradise cove

Billions of sea creatures strove

Pressed up between the toes

So remember how everything goes

(Not) A Review of The Merchant of Venice

Go see it, or don’t. Live your life. I’ve been living mine over here and frankly, it’s alright if I die tonight. I’ve seen enough to be bored by living and if it passes me by just one more time I’ll be just fine. It played on broadway, starring a famous person. Nothing matters unless you’re famous, or talented or beautiful or rich or powerful but what does that matter to me? All the millions in your bank are not as important to me as the $380 I paid to behold the spectacle of St. Alberto Pacinoni as the Blind Venetian. That was reason enough to be excited to see the show. I bought tickets and started planning a romantic date night with the wife.

The wife, who, for the week prior, challenged me to an epic transnational trauma cleanse, a pentathalon of sulking, screaming, smoking, drinking, and another-thing-ing. She was a champion in all such events, a test of every learned defense, redlining emotional resources across the board of benevolent directors known as my conscience. 

During a lull in the fracas, while the ingenue and her six pack of tall boys took several hours recess in our one bathroom, I stepped out for a walk around the block, blurring out my thoughts with the electric techno tourist mob of Times Square, shuffling past the theaters proclaiming the greatest shows ever witnessed, promising heart-pounding exhilaration and the time of your life. I scowled. Billy Joe, you’ve come a Longview from the Dookie days. 

As the quintessential American Idiot, on my way back to workshop the tour-de-force audience participation performance piece unfolding on an ikea carpet eighteen stories above these storied stages, I stopped under the makeshift umbrella of a marquee just around the corner from Studio Apartment Arena. 

I took out a brown satchel of tobacco, selected a wad of fragrant brown shreds and tamped them into the paper, placed a white filter tip a little bit off to the side, gently rolled thumbs against forefingers until the cylinder appeared, ran the tip of my tongue over the glue strip, pushed the filter flush with the roll, letting it hang from the precarious precipice of my lip as I tilted my head to the side to avoid a butane-torch beard fire or a seared schnozz. The invisible flame clicked on and I saw AL PACINO in glowing red. 

Something to look forward to, I thought. Wait, what day is it? 

I knew what fucking day it was. I knew before I opened the ticket confirmation email that I had flagged, or double checked the calendar app. I knew from the reminders I had ignored while embroiled in the aforementioned top-floor tomfoolery. I had to prove it to myself, I couldn’t believe it until I saw it. Was it distrust? Was it that I just missed the money? Was I angry over a petty loss or furious over the foregone failure of my future family?

Our godfather which art on broadway, dimitte nobis debita nostra, sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris. Sicut in Carlito et terror. Lesson learned forever: don’t be shy, or locked. After all, nobody owes you a goddamn ounce of their skin, let alone a pound, and you don’t owe by the same token, no matter how much you think you need them, if this prayer means anything. Each play will have its run and fun, but with some productions the best seat in the house is out on the sidewalk, in my humble opinion.

Ignominious Rex

Emotional wrecks heap up on either side of the great divide of pride and point fingers at the other side. You lied no you lied no…

One finger shames, three point back to you. What you think it is is not what it is it’s what you say it is is not what it is, it is what it is and since it’s not a name, you’re not wrong all the way, since what you say is real… speaking of speaking, so to speak.

Why don’t we play a new game? Every one of us knows it by heart, you make the rules that apply to you, and tell the truth. But what if, you read lips and after taxes…

The fix is to do what you say, and say what you mean, because one thing leads to another, and the word becomes flesh and flesh becomes light, and steps on the stones.

Try to put civilization on skids, lay a new foundation and pray it fits, well, it sits but it’s the details we miss and we kiss our dumb asses goodbye when the big one hits.

We’re safe for a bit, but we’ve got to keep moving or call it quits, cash in your chips where the house always wins, be not afraid to step out of the valley of sins and repent, lather, rinse and repeat.

Do it for the kids. Oh speaking of which, Miss Givings and Ms. Carrage, have you been bullied and badgered and hounded, nagged and bagged on by a crowd of cowards, empowered by a pyramid scheme that stole all your spare hours, seized in a fever dream of eminent domain wolf blitz in sheep dip new media smoke screen?

No? Well it’s time for some answers, after these messages from our handlers: you cast the first stone, you rile the panthers, you dig in your heels, next come the panzers.

Impressionist dialog

The infinite universe is apprehended through the compression algorithm derived by multiplexing peripheral input of limited array of spectrophotometers, mass spectrometers, pressure plates and gyroscopes, honey whether you do or you don’t believe, we can at least agree, something mysterious in each one of us, something dangerous and petty, violent if necessary, perverted and unsanitary, vestigial and involuntary, pentangular plenipotentiary to enemy territory, the immortal and the way of the monastery beckoning back to the caves and trees, in the dark ages, the shaded places of history whereby many peaceful graces worked the land with fellow hand and hand far from the walled and wicked cities, filth and grime in every crevice, paved with misery, lapping up luxuries but dumpster dive for decency, disposable identities, life-size cardboard intimacy, in a grand sort of Ad hominem fallacy, prithee praytell what in the living hell is the moral of this droll and dilatory postmodern tribalist twenty-four hour newsrecycling convenience story, a cultural no-go zone of sedimentary slaves in existential promontory?

Inflammatory Questions

Is it that Braindead suggests politics are a pathology? And how does an adorkable waitress use Tide Pods to tidy up her cluttered, empty life? Is the lie the only way to tell the truth? Can only song say what the heart thinks? Do you just need a man to fumigate your brain, or as comic relief or a tool to grip? Some parasitic ideas are you sick? What’s eating your brain today, and why can’t you just say it? Who can we get to fix all this? Who says success is anything but what you think it is for you? And what the fuck do you know anyway?

Why are children making eyes at one another when they’re making glittery balls of foam to represent the solar system? Are kids with iPhones, programming android apps at school, really going to be taught by a grown adult who thinks it worth the precious youth they can’t get back again?

Have you ever been told you that you’re fuckable? Oh but what was the context? Have you been subjected to the force of the stranger, the other, the alter ego, the doppelgänger, the drifter, the shape shifter, sidestepper, blindsider, backbiter, mad-faced doubletalker? Have you played the part in some off broadway production? Oh haven’t you gone off on someone?

The thing is, if you ask what’s on my mind, why you don’t you take the time to listen? That’s not your mission, huh? You’re here for some grander purpose? Somehow in the blizzard of suffering we’re all weathering, do you think you don’t deserve it? And what if you do deserve? So what? Well if life doesn’t matter now, will it ever? Did life ever matter? Or is life the water being pushed by the wind? What is the wind, the invisible force which moves us, the pneumatic thrust? Is truth incendiary now? Is there justice now, if our mode of justice serves to rust us, corrode our trust? Which lives matter?

Can you ethically support murder? Does it feel better to justify a murder, or to murder someone else for committing the murder and call it justice? Why are some beatings assault and some fantasies rape? When you were a kid and you got tagged, did you say it doesn’t count?  Do your tinted shades and tinted windows shade the world from your brilliance or you from their ignorance? Is death the penalty for disobedience, or the worthiest opponent to the futile charge of being alive? Do you order your brothers and sisters over the throw pillow trenches to soak up the couch fort’s machine-gun fire? Can you lose all the battles but still win the war? Is a mob more moral than man alone?

The sacrifice you made; was it enough? Did it glorify god? Who was pleased by your deeds? If you glorify and give pleasure to yourself, do you sit upon your own throne? Do you climb upon your own cross? Do you give so others gain? Do you move amongst the masses, setting their tongues to flickering flames of ancient names? Who do you inspire by setting a tree on fire?

Peabrain Soup

A cup or a bowl?

Fresh or with a skin?

Hot or cold?

Stale bread or crouton?

Does it matter what the name is?

The real shame of it is thinking

it doesn’t have to be like this.

It could have been worse you say

But you feel things

What is a feeling anyway?

What is a thought?

What is yes and what is not?

You don’t know that. You don’t know. 

You couldn’t be more wrong

Unless you were more right. 

Get left behind by all the rest

Or accelerate the rush of decay

We build a tower of freedom

And jump off the loyal base to escape

Oh is that the easy way?

I’m sorry and goodnight but wait

Are you afraid one day you’ll die,

Or that you were not quite alive?

Stone submits to waves of air and rain

Countless drops descend again and again

To mist around a monument today

And tomorrow wash it away.

The Counter Intuitive

Never underestimate anyone.

Life exists and that’s proof enough it is more powerful than death. And even if life is extinguished completely, never to return, and yet it does, popping up in a new form, lovers over dinner and intellectual banter, cicadas on biochemical dimmer switches, watermelon jolly ranchers and dissolving stitches, we are always coming back together, we are always building bridges. Artisans of scorched wood, thermite charged with playing a peaceful corpse in the world premiere production of united dominations, see it first or see it last, you will see as the sinister mob sees with hidden fees and unpaid dues for dividends in arrears for years and forgive us for we know not what we do to hit continue one more time of all the twitching lines that seemed ripe until the first bite and it’s rotten inside the beautiful hide you ride or fly in a lie of the emperor’s new clothes, truth is contagious share the wealth of our ancestors table scraps of a feast from a fable in a fairy tale castle and weddings like funerals conveyors of coffins dance on like ducklings into the sewer later or sooner it’s beads on a skewer or a calculator, what’s useful gets used up without remainder. A brown butcher paper flap creased along its center of mass, died twelve thousand and seventeen meters later in a bionic bird nest.

Mega Low Down Megalodon

Older than most dirt you see

I’m here to eat you

Make your arm

Into a soup

Hack at your roots

No telling what I’ll do

Or when I come for you

Great white devil 

Your worst fears come true

Defenses I get through

Think you’re safe when you wake

But I’m right behind you

⚪️

But why listen to me

I’m just someone who’s ruined it all

From day one

Just learn how to speak

Make melodies jangling keys

Open opportunity

Put in your time 

keep your head down

Get into the game

Capitalize on your youth while you can

Or remain in the dust

From whence you came

⚫️

You’re dark she said too dark for me

But it’s darkest when it’s deep

Life is teeming at the vents

Toxicity for you maybe

But it’s home to me

I thrive on suffering

I dive in willingly

It surrounds me

That’s when I stop noticing

Try it

You’ll see

What I mean

Baby