New Poem! Needs Title Friday, Jul 10 2009 

Any title suggestions?  I’m performing this tonight for the first time down in Tucson tonight with the team.  I know what it looks like, but give this poem a chance, it may not be what it appears to be… <..< >..>

You were the soundtrack of my youth.
You only had 50 years to change the world,
blatant sex appeal forcing parent everywhere
to purchase extra parental control features,
Imitated and ridiculed, you were a kid at heart.

You had me convinced.  Maybe, you had us all fooled.
But when you came to life on the screen,
a puppet-less string,
through the white noise of mediocrity,
rhythmic preaching like a lullaby in stereo
MTV, BET, The Home Shopping Network,
Billy Mays,
We believed you.

You could have been that one dad
at baseball games in a Snuggie.
You could have pried us with insulting weight-loss supplements,
wouldn’t it be nice if there was a little less of you?
You could have been sponging the blood of a hooker
from the linoleum with a Shamwow,
“Will It Blend?”

But you chose to teach us
to harness the power of oxygen
for its stain fighting abilities,
If only you could have used it
to breathe a little longer.
Now the clouds are bleached brighter and whiter, but the
pearly gates retain their bold shiny sheen.
You could sell a sin to God, Billy Mays
make us worship a Plater Grater, wonder what would happen
if you could combine a cheese grate with a plate
pray for cleaner cuts, Mend-Its and Slap Chops
cry out, Hallelujah, long live your laundry

We all know now that two Awesome Augers
are better than one.
Because that’s twice as many augers.

Why settle for less?
When you can have it all for $19.99
But wait, there’s more,
We’ll pay to eradicate stains
Bleach blank slates, present the immaculate home
with whiskey in the cupboard and sauce on the stove
The knives are never dull
unlike the dinner guests.
Hang up photo-shopped smiles with Hercules Hooks
use mighty putty instead of nails, leave no trace
Never dice up your soul,
Only mince words
Slice your way into our hearts, eternally sharp
take pride in the quality of destruction

We’ll take glass-bottomed boat tours over your grave.
But we can’t buy now
not from a ghost, who won’t accept visa.
We can’t save more
not when we couldn’t save you.
I’m still on the line, still waiting out the dial tone
we can’t hang up the phones
rerunning shows, we won’t give you up just yet
How could you, of all people Billy Mays,
Get such a raw deal?

You can wrinkle your nose
But here everything
smells like citrus


UnLucky Thursday, Apr 9 2009 


I’ll clean the cage, mom,
I swear
I’ll take care of her

said my brother.

Hands dug indelicately
through the mass of scampering fur
in pursuit of the perfect
Seven-dollar hamster.

I cleaned the cage once,
I swore as I stared
at stoic, limp Lucky
teeth bucked toward the
Great Habitrail in the sky

Cancel the dentist, mom,
there’s been an accident
And I can’t do homework at a time like this

When you get to be my age
you’ll understand,
I comforted my cross-legged brother
No. 2 pencil slanted in clammy hands
Diligently poking air holes in the cardboard coffin

The solemn shovel scratched away
six inches of mud
Father fumbling for the appropriate epitaph
for a seven-dollar hamster

Smearing dirt on my face
batting stray tears

I’m going to miss her

said my brother

My Sister Friday, Mar 27 2009 

My Sister

My sister was famous for dying unborn.
With only blood to bury no memorial amassed,
no candles burned, but ashes cast
of a deep and dying love landed like fairylights
in newborn hair.

I can’t help but picture her
as a presence
of top-heavy perfection.
Reading Thoreau and Irving and always
using fresh herbs in the soup.
She would have an immortal immunity toward
Garbage bags left to multiply in the sun.
Never an enemy but always a foil,
she would resist
clandestine nights, carbohydrates,
the soporific advances of barmen and employers,
snooze buttons and shoe sales.

And always would my sister hold
the condition of her conception,
the primal symbolism of the past
clutched to her side like a phantom limb.
Skin wrapped in a flushed pink,
She crawled
out of the sticky soup and foam
of yesterday’s boiling heat.
A product of rum and
broken condoms.