Posts for June 21, 2018



You are the only consistent male voice
In my ear since birth

And the most important thing you taught 
Me was to follow the voice of my own
Conscience – hang the consequence! –

And it’s complicated.

Sometimes I don’t recognise you anymore.
You have become the rockstar-in-a-box that 
You invented to mock your critics. Mocking and being
Are two completely different things – black leather,
Sunglasses, philosophy soundbites for the media
To dangle from, A-list flattery – it doesn’t always look good
On you.

But we are seldom as black-and-white simple as anything
Called “hero” – and listening to our conscience can lead us to
Situations that appear on the outside to be hypocritical.
I’m not a child anymore. I know compromise is not a dirty word
All the time. And I never wanted you in shining armor.

No one can shine in blinding camera flash lightning.

This is not my country. My country
Is not of this earth. I can’t do what you 
Taught me and what you tell me. 
Because they are not the same to me.

I will do and say and think things 
Others think are wrong. Things you 
Think are wrong. I won’t fly flags 
Or pick sides. I’m not here for that.
This is not my country.

And I will follow the voice of my own
Conscience – whatever the consequence! –

I hope you see yourself in that choice,
Even if you don’t understand the particulars:
You taught me that.


The Differentiation of Women Based Solely on Their Hands

Maybe you’re just one of those women who doesn’t get to live.
Maybe you just get to work. Maybe you just get to give and give, maybe
you’ll dig
Full hands deep into your own stomach hunting for passion.
Maybe its an obsession, maybe its madness that you call this depression art.
Forget peace, just try to sleep (enough).
What are these dreams about gardens but a waste?
There’s no building or forming when you’re always working,
What are these dreams about men who communicate (love)?
Forget children, just make sure you have enough (money).

And who told you that all white girls go to heaven?
What’s struggling really, when you’re just a basic t-shirt of an American
How hard have you tried to drown, really?
Holding your breath all day doesn’t count.
Some girls cut their hands up on purpose. A guitar helps you float to the
Some girls cut their hearts up on purpose. The calluses will all be worth
The calluses wrap pain up like a nervous
Tick. They fit like a body barrier between everything
And me, or I,
and the customer in front of me
Who looks totally thoughtless on purpose.
Smiling white teeth ordering egg whites.
Makeup layered like acrylics, meticulous Instagram filter of a person.
Kate Spade full wallet holding hands, what is your purpose?

Does anything on earth make you ache
Like I want to ache, like I always ache for hot things like love and art
and riot?
What are words to the wordless?
Show me your nails and then your veins and tell me you don’t want to be
Tell me your thoughts aren’t insane, not pulling at your throat when you
Have you forgotten your hands calling, begging you to make, make anything
one of a kind.

Better yet, better you don’t live this life. To be here you must be high or
Let your love be as surface level as the golden plated promise shinning
from your finger.
You reach your future out for me to see. You just met and its set blinding,
It scares me that your hands are so fragile and perfect.
I hold it like I’ll hurt it. My callouses rubbing your net-worth makes me
I see you women, living without art or mistake.
I see you women, hiding your fat rolls and cakes.
All you ever seem to eat is money. Honey must pour from your matte ruby

Instead of words and hurt, do you think about your future kids?
Show me pictures of all your gardens. Is your heart just a soft surface,
not calloused and bottomless?
Tell me are your thoughts less on purpose?Are you staying positive?
Does all that positivity ooze from your pores
when you touch, how many times a day are you touched?
How much does it cost to love, effortlessly? How much effort does it take
to remain buoyant?

Dear Rich White hands, is there anything left to hold you back or down?
Is there anything left in life that makes your heart still drown?
Does your mind have a room of its own? Is it storage, is it quiet, is it
void of sound?
What lotion keeps your hands like light feathers?
Is it better to be happy than weathered?
What lotion can I afford for my calloused.
How much does your Naked pallet bring you inner peace?
Does money float hope just enough to sleep?

Tell me the stories of all the hands who have handed you
hundreds of hundred-dollar bills. Kate Spade Barbie, write mean to me your
definition of worthlessness.
Then tell me about your worth and what work soft, clean, claw hands are
perfect for.
Tell me about perfect sleep beside a soulmate.
Tell the hand handing you change
how to change without nepotist step-stool of male money.
Have you ever been actually hungry?
So much that you would eat your own words

For hands that don’t hurt,that aren’t rough or still hurt
for hands that need absolutely nothing.


advice to throw your fortunes into a sea

(blackout poem from Herodotus’ Historiai trans. David Grene)
they cried without distinction

and in chains dug
fortune and sent it
to please a jealous ruin
listen to me and
never come to the world of men again
there is no cure
a soul in agony was bound in gold and stone



I just want to get to work
I can’t believe I have thought that thought consciously and i’m a little disgusted with myself for it truly
The woman next to me on the platform in a yellow raincoat and platinum hair improved the cold wet so briefly
But we got on different cars
Next to me on my own car she was short and round faced and eating a plum
Not entirely unpretty but I would have kissed the plum first
She stuck its label to her work bag
I hope she went into the office with it that way in quiet rebellion
I ask a man named Steven(which I know by his id badge) if he was far enough in so as to not be crushed by the door
He was surprised
But looked at me as though I was pretty enough to be acknowledged and said yes, he was far enough in
I wonder how we would interact in a bar
The train lurches and I fall into the woman behind me
I am bad at this city
She is not amused
Twice there are incidents with my umbrella
How do you do this? There are too many things to hold
The commuter car is exhausted by my ignorance
We are together like dominoes and it’s too early for me to be causing a ruckus
The girl in the yellow raincoat was at my next stop
Which I decide to transfer from at the last minute
Silver linings


Secure in the Knowledge

His thinking
Strickly autistic
Is matter of fact
So when she was thinking
Outloud one day about whether
Or not
The two chocolate labs
She had known
Would run to meet her
In heaven
He quietly said,
“If they do, please tell Cassie
I miss her”.


Unprecedented Rainfall

The cacophony of condensation
Corrodes at my energy
The water scolds me
Shames me for getting out of bed
Calls me foolish for making plans
And I, like a wide eyed child,
Is brutally aware of my mistake.

In my youth,
I could listen to these complaints.
The rain could whisk me back to bed,
Fog up my plans
It could shade me from my responsibilities
As long as I would right my wrongs.

I must ignore the pleading from the heavy handed Cumulonimbus
I must stay grounded to a world where looking up is child’s play
I mustn’t be swayed by a few tears
I answer to more than mother nature
It’s too late for that.

But my innocence still calls for me to listen.
Go dance in the Sky’s sorrow
Just for right now.
Just for right now.


In Vogue

In Vogue




A lot of times people talk about things

like having separate erotic demands, 

mediation on demand, 

instant gratification in food and drink….

We live in a brave technicolor world 

complete with surround sound & visuals 

which compete with soma to deliver

diversion and delight and profound joy—

in short, minds too often devoid of creativity.

Give me a good book, pen and paper,

occasional masterpiece theatre,

simple sex (which really isn’t so simple) 

or nine hours of sleep; I’m happy.  But remember,

mr. world, a woman so empowered is dangerous. 






Melva Sue Priddy




Everything wants to 
snip or snide.
Because these are the 
momentous days,
when she married,
when she left me
and all of us.
When the rainbows came.



cook your own steak
next time damn it
and smoke your pipe
somewhere else

churn your lance
in more deserving hearts
paint with your iron a less
majestic corpse

we’ve all turned cannibal
on this floating hearse
we make an easy exchange
from bow to stern

I peer over the gunwale
I preach to ravaging sharks


American Dichotomy

                                                While I relax,
Little Finch-type birds
                                                                    Flocks of parents
yellow and black and brown
                                                                    harbor terror and fear 
chitter and call
                                                                    for their soft children 
swooping through the veranda
                                                                    wrenched from their warm arms
The clouds pass over the sun
                                                                    There are no binkies 
temporarily obscuring warmth
                                                                     or fresh from the dryer blankets
My wife eats juicy oranges
                                                                     At this point
while the sea breeze lifts her hair
                                                                     a dirty, cramped bus 
Sometime this afternoon 
                                                                     would be welcomed 
We’ll venture out of this hotel paradise
                                                                    Your jovial coworker or neighbor
to find a turquoise lagoon 
                                                                     would choose a future
a cove in the north island
                                                                    in a country that was never
Where, people say, 
                                                                    their home
the colorful fish and wild iguanas 
                                                                    Just so maybe
are plentiful 
                                                                    they can
We hope to see the turtles
                                                                    if they are really lucky
or turtle, even one will do
                                                                    have a small chance
 And I say a small prayer
                                                                     the tiniest whisper of a prayer
that we don’t get lost
                                                                     to hold their babies again.
and I can hold onto the camera.