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O Rapture! The Disaster of Life!: Book I: Ordem e Progreso

Below are a bunch of poems I wrote a few years ago.  For your enjoyment.  Copyright 2008 Richard Morell

Rock Tumbling

9 years old and it’s the Wintertime.
Through the snow-covered streets, my Dad
drives the blue Chevy with a newfound toy.
He brings us the rock-tumbling set
he found at the local toy store.
“Put any old rock through this process,
and you’ll have a polished gem.
These four steps and you’ll be set
with spiffy, shiny rocks to add
to your collection.”  Wasn’t really much
to it–some solutions, a round plastic
barrel to put the stones in like laundry
machines. A few rocks pre-selected
for our tumbling pleasure.

I wonder what barrel I’ve been set into,
atwirl in some briny blinding solution
that pushes my heart through some alchemy
wherein maybe I’ll be polished glistening
blinding everyone on sight. What process
of purification am I enduring
and for what end? For how long
in this spiritual laundromat
am I consigned?  When will I emerge
like a Monarch Butterfly from chrysalis
or better the Hope Diamond springing
eternal from a chunk of charcoal?
When will the stunning man inside me emerge?

Me That Mountain

Raw heart

child diaper

dream fellow

35 year-old man

distracted yearning

desire Dad

do nothing

sit sink

feeling lonely

sit sink

remember walls

fake paneling

wood floor

not rec. room

linoleum black

flecks of confetti

I rubbed myself

they freaked

dirty filthy




they freaked


underground jerking-off

locked bathrooms

only privacy

dreamed of boys

lonely kid me

so lonely

nothing to do

too young

no roles modeled

just a possession

the ache inside

carried to this day

deepest loneliness

can’t see light

mountains of tears

yet to be shed

fundamental grief

that poor kid—

not just me

others too

none of us could

not till later

adults now

pain and suffering

to be released

sorrow felt

rage felt

depression felt

rejection felt


stronger now

35 year-old man

I give myself

they couldn’t give

still can’t

denial protects

insulates completely


their love

still lonesome

after all these years

blow away now

blow away now

blow away now

now I’ll cry

me that mountain.


Indifference, Garden-Variety

The dream wasn’t very clear.
Los Angeles had turned into a Liquor Mart.
Santa Monica Boulevard had become the J.D. aisle
The Bourbon aisle, not the vodka aisle
(The Scotch aisle was across the street)
I saw the amber liquid,
Enticing me into its deliciousness.

“Well, I could have a shot, I suppose,”
I found myself saying to the red paper seal,
“But I would rather not.”
And I looked for the exit, but there was none,
For the whole city was now an alcohol grid
And I was just another consumer
Looking to get drunk

The palm trees stood there,
Impassive witness to the boozy transactions,
And I wandered aimlessly through, no respite
For in the light of the setting sun,
For miles and miles all I could see
Were rows of rows of shelves and shelves
Liquor’s ancestral home.

In therapy, I became L.A.
In the same manner I became my house earlier,
But L.A., house, it matters not.
“Well, you can do whatever you want.
You’re not here for long anyhow.
I can’t imagine anyone being here without,
And you don’t matter, so do what you will.”

I was sad to learn I treated myself this way.
That I thought of myself as a ghost,
A temporary denizen of wherever I live
Whose presence is negligible
And for whom it is important
That I leave no trace of myself
For disappearing is an act of rage.

Yes, I am enraged with you.
With whoever, whatever you are.
You are yet another person who will leave me,
And I will have to pretend you don’t matter
Because then I’d have to feel abandoned
(That’s just under the surface of my L.A. Face)
And who wants to see a fat boy cry?

(I certainly don’t.)

Tompkins Square Park

Laying on the grass today,
I feel at a disadvantage.
Raw meat has snuck into my chest
where my heart used to be.
Summerbrain drains my system
the lazy hazy days of
bringing me by in some Germanic sense.
I feel hollowness where once beat
passion, some cardiac evisceration
having taken place under July’s
special kind of anesthesia.

This is in a special way pure
willfulness on my part, this pain
I feel, an exquisite torture I visit
upon myself when the mood to fall
in love clutches at me.  This doom
I seek consciously, remembering
how as a gay teenager I was forever
deprived of asking my dream prince
to the Prom.  Oh, I’ll get my revenge
some day, a modern-day DeFarge
de Buttfucker in the making.

It’s so hard to stop Newton
from blocking Rousseau, banishing
my heart to a sort of prison therein
to languish for offenses imagined
but never executed. The longing
I feel again and again reminds me
of the vivid breaths I take, the duties
I have to meet, the needs I defer
so often out of safety concerns
or out of disrespect for my heterosexual
equals, or more often than not
just fear, that imagined uphill war.

I can only win this battle by surrender.
A planned retreat from suffering
is the marching order for the day.
I don’t need to win that battle
against my own self.  Whoever wins
gets to die.  But if I could know
more about where I should direct
my disattached longings, I’d be better
off.  Sometimes I wonder if death’s
easy path wouldn’t be better.
I wouldn’t have this yearning anymore.

Or I could kill off all my feelings
and betray my water sign heritage,
turn into the shutdown visage of my Dad
who denied his fears and desires
and plunged right into Budweiser Bliss,
the bellicose rages easily forgotten.
Feelings are nothing but conflagration
anyway, right?  And they can only kill
me if I’m not careful.  But without yearnings
for sweet caresses of boyish hands
Air wouldn’t be much worth breathing.

I see that it’s pain and pain and more
pain that this life is made of.  Joy
lurks amid the thorns somewhere.
Hopefully one day it will take me
unawares, and I’ll find myself skipping.
For now, I feel the special pinpricks,
those punctures of my soul when moved
by his strong stocky legs, by the small
nipples on that one’s chest, framed
by fleshy pecs. A certain hunger for
that sort of skin I will never chew.

Summer Brain

Heat intense, right? I’m Richard Nixon.

No, that’s not right.  I’m John Morrell.

That’s it. No?  Oh, well. Let me get

to a place that’s cool.

The sun makes my brain tilt on pinballs

zooming this way and that, never sure

what the goal is, just to keep moving.

Or not.  My entire body feels the shame

of unclarity. Who am I today? A guy

longing for that shirtless man across

the street, hope against hope he’s

available.  I want a swimming pool

filled with refreshment, the blue

water cools the sky hot heat

in this cerulean heart.

(I wonder about popsicles.

Are they good practice for fellatio

if they melt with every touch

of my tongue?) God, even sitting

in a lamp’s pallid heat gets to me.

Oh, July, why must thou?

Here I am withering to focus —

wishing to focus, shit! wishing

that somehow a project or two

will occupy my field of vision

but the dissipation willed

by a 105 degree heat index

is as present as the Gods are.

I try to write with a pencil

made out of jellyfish on paper

that is made out of barnacles.

The freshly slaughtered Medusa

poisonous skin still pungent,

potent with a revenge of hunger

calls for gingerly treatment.

Push pencil across barnacle

in a vain attempt to say something

I have no control over anyway.

So I show up to the page

with all of my rage

Hope for the best because July

is a 31 day demon.

(One day at a time. Thank Aphrodite

that summer is only 90 days.)

Bad Professor

Harvey Keitel in drag would do you justice.
His gravel-smoke voice could drawl Mississippi
and convey your essential indignity,
your cavalier, Courvoisier manner
of dismissing challenging words you deem unworthy.
Yes, if someone were to play you in a movie,
that grizzled veteran would be the ideal candidate.
(Runner-up: Anthony Hopkins, whose sobriety would twist
a certain cannibal knife in your Blakean corpus.)

The V-T fog is lifting, slowly but with method.
I had to work through some of the father-beer haze
to come to understand about what fermented
potato essence does to me.  And now, a year
into a drinkless road, I see my past anew.
For I stopped growing sometime in my freshman
year.  The Brandy Alexander at that New York hotel
arrested my spiritual growth, and began
a grinchy road of torment and burdens.

I went from an A average to a B-minus in a week.
The medication was so thorough, I lost my feet
and blamed my lazy-ass self.  This sinister disease
convinces me that personal suckage is cause
for my unwitting decline, rather than a sensitivity
to booze and drugs that dates back to prehistory.
The fix was in with my disclosure of love for boys
ferreted out of me by persistent hateful fingers
adept at manipulating those buttons they placed in me.

What they didn’t know was that buttons entice
ones such as you, O Royal Cunt, who would destroy
just for the joy of destruction.  I can be charitable,
however.  I assume you drink, pop Xanax
at any and every opportunity.  The numbness
is the grail, n’est-ce pas?  Of course I know it!
How else could you face your Griselda Gesicht
in the mirror but through that same Neptune fog
blurring your human responsibilities.

“Yes, yes, all well and good,” I hear you comprawl. “Writing
prose & pomes is plenny diff’cult wuhk.
’Tsup to me to informs all-y’alls of no talent.
’Tsreally a blessin’ in disguise.”  Ah, your disease
is cunning, how it interlocks with mine,
unleashing the slow-acting poison into my membrane.
Into how many others did you drop your insidious magnets
whirring their internal compasses about, so true north
appeared off by 86 degrees?

Just enough to make it seem it was my own decision,
to turn my back on the novels I know are inside
and settle for plays lumpy with words
screenplays overbalanced by language.
Ultimately I know you are not to blame.
My anger still endures, causing my pain to flicker.
But the stoking serves a hidden healing purpose.
The time approaches when I must unseal the chains
Your boozy breath shackled against my soul.

As the vodka leaves my physical body
and the father-beer fog dissipates
a new awareness is borne along
that the power you have over me was bequeathed
to you by yours truly.  Fearsome duty to my love,
the writing of longish and literary texts,
gets kindled once more, and a covenant
to my truest self is gathering form.
I must commit to write that first book.

It’s fine with me that you won’t like it—
please, please hate it, I implore you!
I encourage you to pillory, flagellate, attempt murder
the work I do.  (Perhaps it shall hasten
your own bottom, the Bill & Lois Show awaits
you with open arms and Big Books at the Ready.)
This way I shall know it is good indeed,
the Egyptian-Biloxi seal of approval
to be stamped into the cover, indelible.

Like Hitler & his Republican minions, you serve
a purpose, Ms. Literary Taliban, Censor of the Baroque
and Experimental.  You embody all that I wish
to be free of.  It’s said pain is inevitable
but misery is only an option.  I choose
to give you back that suffering you thoughtlessly
thrust into my heart.  I put down the V-T,
and pick myself up where the lost and angry man
left off before swallowing that old lady’s drink.

(Such a queen am I, but of course.)
The fears are being worked out in me,
inside a 12-course factor, a series of surrenders.
You shall recede into the background
with all the other monsters of my life
whose casual abuse caused bitterness
and despair Fassbinder-style.  I resolve
to counteract that sheeple instinct in the end
to merely tolerate everything that comes my way.

Some things are unacceptable.
Some things are beyond contempt.
Some things are indefensible.
Yet I am not entitled to Nemesis rage.
Vengeance cannot be mine.  No medieval
tortures await your ass.  You must live
with your own past, and if rationalization
is your predictable M.O., well. . . You are Queen
of Denial in namesake and action both.

I own my contribution to my sorrow,
a brittle attachment to the wound
cut into astral flesh, irresponsible
to our respective karmas.  I bring
the injury to light and air to heal
the rift, and I resume my journey from that liquored
point.  The dream is not yet broken after all.
And while daunting the task is possible.
One small sentence at a time.

A Dialogue with my Fear

Well. Old Friend. That awful feeling in between my heart and my stomach, that little added burning of the windpipe that accompanies the addictive feeling I’ve come to call “shame.”  Sucks.

(“Addictive?  Who do you think you are, asshole? I certainly don’t want to be feeling this way!  I want to do it right the first time so I don’t feel this way. Shit.”)

But how could you do it right the first time, the spotty training you’ve had?


Well, I prefer to think I was OK enough.  I learn quickly. That’s my saving grace.

 (“Oh, yeah!  That’s rich.  Like that’ll make up for the lost revenue.”)

What are you talking about, lost revenue?

 (“You could have lost him a whole bunch o’ business, jerk.  Don’t you know dick?”)

They were both in-house calls!

 (“Oh ho ho!  In-house calls? You don’t know the half of it.”)

I don’t even know a hundredth of it.


You just like to go to the extreme end of things, dont’cha asshole?

 (“Hey, I’m not your asshole talking. I’m your brain, got that?”)

Really, how can I tell the difference?

 (Well, I never!  May I remind you sir, that I am your thinking function and therefore should carry the utmost respect from the likes of you.”)

Yeah, like the good it does me.  And may I remind you, Mr. Thinking Function, that life ain’t worth living unless I feel some joy.  So go the fuck away, Mr. Brainstem.  Sill, Billy.  I’m doing just fine.

Devils Lake I

The North Dakota prairie is greener
than I expected.  Stories of cold
winter days and a colder grandfather
raging against the white youthfulness
of my mother and her brothers.
I half expected the state to sit
under a year-long drought.  But no,
there are even trees in Mom’s Home Town.
The hot sunny 4th of July day

my parents have arranged a barbecue
in their spacious treed back yard.
No fences, a couple of benches,
a couple of tables and lots of food.
I meet my cousins, Mavis (74)
and Peter (82) who can announce
the Latin names for the various flora
surrounding us.  Acer nigra” he declares
of the Box Elder sitting centrally

in the yard.  “In the maple family.”
There are numerous heavinesses
that hang silently in the air.
Grandpa’s in the Good Sam Home.
That legacy of rage stirring
perennially in the heart of my mom
a palpable presence that never has
to utter a word.  It wafts around us
with one other heavy silence,

that of my love of boys which goes
mewling without any recognition.
Grandma asks me if I have a girlfriend
and I say I’m between relationships.
Mom wanted me to make up a name.
That’s what my Uncle Duane does.
I’m not willing to play that game.
It’s not the time to self-disclose.
I won’t abandon myself that way,

like I did before.  Not without allies.
Still, there was my tiny step up
to the plate for myself.  Dad’s hope
I would stay in their house I had
to dash to the ground in flames.
My one expectation, that I would enjoy
the privacy of a motel room turned out
to be something I had to fight for,

embarrassing him in the process
but he had it coming.  Trying to make
it public at the breakfast table,
I was on to him.  Quietly I said I
wanted my motel room.  He can’t complain.
I got him those Jack Lemmon-Walter
Matthau videos for his birthday.
Grumpier Old Men and Out to Sea.
I just remembered this too shall pass,
as I passed up an opportunity to be

holier-than-thou.  Mom going back on her
word to pick up a piece of cake for Duane,
when he asked for it later said “What do
I look like, a nigger wench?”  That went
down with great glee from my family,
except for me.  Mom announced that her son
didn’t find that funny.  Grandma surprised
said “No?” I said “No.”  My family, the
statuary of my past.  I wonder, will

it be another eight years when I
will visit them again? 

My Whirlwind Midwest Tour, 1998

First it was my parents.
A neurotic love fest had by all
in the backpark–I mean backyard.
Barbecued proteins of various species.
A lot of starches of course!

Potato salad, both German and American
corn, bread (not together).
Some baked beans to die for
my mommy’s yummy recipe, a musical
addiction awaiting tuneful playing!

A chocolate cake, seven minute icing
with a candle tooting out the birthday
song.  My Grandma asked if my friend
taking care of my cat was a girl friend.
Between relationships right now of a homo

sort, but of course I choose the diplomatic
first four words of that thought.
This after my parents’ neglect almost
caused me to have to endure two whole
days in their cramped little house

not even big enough for the both of them
let alone one of their progeny.
Then it was off to a much-needed respite
with Mike & Sherri in Madison, and another
Devil’s Lake (complete with apostrophe

and all!).  The Endak lake is growing,
but the Wisc lake is staying put.  Endak
hid behind darkness and clouds in and out
of the airport, unknowable in its vastness,
while the Wisc revealed its horniness

from above.  A scenic vista, and I get lost.
The food situation there was as starchy,
one meal consisting of pesto bread,
quesadillas, spaghetti with veggie sauce.
I did take Mike out to dinner at TGI Fridays.

He had Cobb Salad and I had the Chop
House Chicken and Pie-in-the-Sky for dessert.
Then I bussed off to Chicago, careful
to keep my bags with me, since my one
bag I couldn’t carry onto the 20-seater

got separated from me and my Madison connection.
Here in Chicago, I got off the bus
and walked and walked (and bussed)
and walked to the Days Inn, Room 1015.
Another lake view, I’m smitten!

After I spritzed my face (not my cock)
I walked and walked and found a bookstore
and walked and walked and found Boys Town,
a disappointment to be sure.
Had lunch.  And walked and walked

and bought two t-shirts and walked
and walked and before I knew it,
my opportunities for entertainment
were eclipsed by a time lock.
So much for ambitious plans.

It was either off to a porno flick
or beddy bye, but at least the tagliatelli
at TraVia was height of expectations.
Probably the best meal of my whole journey.
So I went to the Bijou for sex.

It didn’t work out. Thirteen dollars
for a porno movie and the chance
to scope out bitter old queens
in search of tenderness. Not my future!
Hell, I didn’t even know the rules.

I felt like I was in a Keystone Cops
meets Kafka movie.  My last day, I pack
too much into it.  Art Institute, shopping,
beach, theater.  Maddening Crowds inside me
scream for air and gentleness.  I go for a swim

and am renewed by the fresh sky blue water
of Lake Michigan.  I’m scared of the waves,
which I’ve never seen in a lake.  It cools
my skin and heats up my soul. I love Chicago,
though its gay community seems weird.

Maybe I’m weird with them, I don’t know.
On the beach French kids talk while smoking
and an obnoxious little girl whines and whines
and lots of good-looking Chicago boys
(some hetero, some I can’t tell, wishful

thinking), recline on towels.  I decide
if I’m going to lust, then I better get me
to the gay beach.  I walk and walk and walk
and walk and pretty soon, I don’t care
about the gay beach anymore.  I go back to

Days Inn and realize I’m hungry.  I find
the Original Pancake House and have a second
breakfast.  Have the farmer’s scramble, with
buttermilk pancakes, juice and coffee.
F-U-D-E spells food, it does.  I close

the place down (it’s only 4:30!) and off I go
to the Theater Building to decide between
Dirty Little Show Tunes and Beautiful Thing. I opt
to go British in Chicago, tired of dirty
little show queens.  I made the right choice,

I know.  The play moves as much as the movie.
I decide to spend my last night in Chicago
walking through Boys Town on a Friday night.
Wanting to see the gay scene at its most active.
I’m struck by how Denver Chicago is.  Gay guys

in both midwest towns are more social
than political.  I walk up and down N. Halsted
Just taking it all in.  I don’t go into any bar.
Pretty soon, I need to go to the bathroom,
and once again Chicago reminds me how Denver

it is, when even the Starbucks closes at 10:30
on a Friday.  I wake at 5:30 the next morning.
Take a taxi, wishing I had four more days
to find other ways Chicago is Denver,
and the ways it’s New York, and the ways

it’s its own.  But I’ve got to get back
to my Kitzel and my shitty little apartment.
Ah, home!


Poppycock Marblehead on the rise

Descendant virtues unchecked.

A trauma gets you five to ten

in a Pennsylvania of sensate longing

(can you fucking believe it?)

Murderess, you wanton slut

of a television breakdown

coming to get me in a nightmare

havoc, filled with shame (I’ll bet

you even beat eggs with sledge-

hammers, you vixen of darkness.)

Why must I possess six-cylinders

of scuzzy schism blackness

when a reddish sun flares

tremendous in a purple sky

called my cock?  Oh, farewell

my boys.  I go off to join a convent

in mayhem.  A sealing up

off all my crevices, so none dare

enter into my monastic crashing

of the party called “Abyss.”

A Prayer for Matthew Shepard

I didn’t know you, my brother in love.

But the location of your life and death

Is within the realm of my experience.

Your too-short life and its brutal end

Have unleashed a tidal wave of grief

and rage and fear that have laid

just under my skin for fifteen years

too long, too long.

I too am a child of a lawless West,

wild and intoxicated in its confusion

of independence with psychotic isolation,

of self-expression with cruelty

of ruggedness of spirit with violence of intent.

My family was different than yours

They loved you for the bright spirit you were

Your grace, your grace.

My life has been one of adversity embraced.

In my young adult years at a small college

loved by some, feared and resented by me

for placing ambition over compassion,

I feel a direct parallel experience, though

the gay bashers at Dartmouth aspired to suits

and ties in the Wall Street and Boston mode,

Repressed, repressed.

The papers have said you held only one

intolerance, “against those who couldn’t accept

others for who they are,” that you chose

not to hide your bright self in spite

of the hatred that spreads its cancer

through the body of humanity we call America

and though you lay broken and lifeless

I live, I live.

Through tears of grief after you, my brother in love,

I try to write these words of outrage and loss,

as much mine as yours, for I now must leave

my fears behind and come forward and shout

“I am a gay man and I count for something.”

In my heart of hearts I believe this,

though I’ve been impressed by others’ willfulness.

Too weak, too weak.

To berate myself is to forget my worth.

Always a seductive choice in this hateful world.

It is too horrible that we seem to require

a virginal sacrifice to showcase the need

for change in this world.  But we learn the hard way.

That’s how things take.  You’re yet another

Christ-figure on the road to liberation.

A waste, a waste.

I did not know you Matthew, my brother in  love.

But I do know your life and your terror too well.

I cannot stand by and allow them to win.

I pray that your death brings awareness

of our plight.  We can not remain complacent

and will ourselves into a false optimism.

Our continued freedom to love and embrace

is hard, is hard.

My prayers to the cosmos and to the compassionate ones

is that we connect with one another to secure

justice and that we confront ourselves gently

and release our fears, anger and hate

and use the energy to show the world our loveliness

and display our loving gifts and our essential worth

and all attention to the lies and orgy of hate

they spawn, they spawn.

I want

to love

and hold

a man

so close.

I cry.

I laugh.

i dance

with joy.

I know

it’s good.

My heart.

My soul.



I heal


I pray

to come


with you.

And all

who love




men who

love men


who love


God’s grace


We’re gifts

of love

the world


We must


you all

we’re here.


us all.

We give


the gift

of trust

we know

what’s right

for us

we must




we have

this right


our bliss,

our hearts,

our souls.

We’re good.

We’re sad.

We’ve lost

a son,


in love.

We mourn.

We grieve

and come


in rage,


We will


We won’t


We will

move on


gay men


and those

who love

and keep

us all

for who

we are

what we

can give.

We hold

him up.

We keep

his soul

in mind.

We will

move on.

We must.

We must.

We must.

We shall.

We shall.

We shall.

Have faith.

Have faith.

Have faith.





Tangent to Lonely

A glance in the mirror
and I feel a pinch in my heart:
My sagging belly reminds me
just how lonely I am.

Feelings live in the body
stored away with the fat
the happiness in blood,
the rage in the muscles.

My bones contain my bitters
or maybe something else.
Perhaps my fear, I don’t
claim any sort of knowledge.

Ignorance of these things
comes up as a reminder
in the most likely of places–
the men’s room looking glass.

The ramifications of Mars
bars catches up with me.
(Thank God that workplaces
don’t install scales in their toilets!)

The comfort of sugar has worn
through its steadfast welcome.
I wish to have the comfort of a man
wrapping me in his tender arms.


Scorpio Descending

People by and large don’t know this,
but the time of year corresponding
to the Zodiac sign that set at one’s birth
becomes an energetic season in her life.

It is always the sign opposed to the Ascendant.
And so, November seems to be my highest
energy time—moreso even than August into September,
the time I used to prepare for school.

November 4, to be exact, is the day in question.
My new year, at roughly 13 degrees Scorpio,
this date, witnesses a burst of energy
unlike any other.  ( I sometimes fantasize

the guy I fall in love with
will have this day of birth
much to my Mother’s eternal displeasure,
she who would forbid Scorpio births worldwide).

My body fills with an exuberance
this time of year, a mystical fulfillment
seems to quicken behind the skin.
Desire spikes, but so too does my connection to G.O.D.

I’ve heard some call it “Good Orderly Direction.”
Sometimes I refer to it as “Gay Orgasmic Daddy.”
God as I understand God/dess/es —
A plurality of divinity to touch upon.

November is a time of remembrance.
It’s the time I fucked up royally at work.
It’s the time I discovered my inner little girl.
It’s the time chosen for my last drink.

So don’t be surprised if I come a bit unglued
each fixed-water focus of the year.
The sun has just arisen backwards,
the counterclockwise motion lighting my chart.

As the wheel of the year turns, degree
by degree, the sun makes its ascent,
and I seem to care most about what you think
at this most spiritual moment.

Yes, I will throw my tarot cards in forty-ish days,
as il solsticio invernal approaches.
I consider this my time to emerge
from a six-month chrysalis inside myself.

For when April comes, I learn empathy
with Demeter.  May is my own version
of Perspephonic descent.  That time to begin
self-work in earnest hews to a lonely road.

Somehow it seems right to me that fire
should kindle in my heart this penultimate month.
Death. Sex. Other People’s Money.
This is the moment for those dreams.

I’m horniest in November
and I’m compassionate in November
and I’m contemplative in November
above all I’m crazy-ass creative too.

So this poem has been forged
in this welter of hidden desires
tapped and harnessed, hopefully
to sear some message into paper.

My solid, stolid Taurus Rising
may appear placid and pleasant
to all who don’t know me yet.
But the Pluto juju lives alongside.

A devilish burden I’d rather own,
than project onto a man to love
and see his fists reign supreme,
black and blue marks of passionate overcoming.

No, it’s better to claim Hades’ dark urgings
and place them in quatrains such as this,
a caldera of character and crass rawness.
There shall be deaths to give life to love.

For I do wish to offer myself
as a willing supplicant to ardor and amor.
I’m witness to some othering.
(Whoever you are, please be gentle!)

If I get laid that’s fuckin’ great.
But if not, the universe’s charity
finds a receptive channel to pour forth
its bounteous abundance to me.  And to you.

Perhaps we shall walk hand in hand
through the path littered with dead leaves
fallen in their autumnal beauty
to journey into oneness with the earth.

We contemplate our deaths and loves,
for isn’t that all we really have?
An erotic agape grows among us
and grace, ah yes, he does descend!

Happy Christmas Poem

December hides blood and envy
in its seemingly benign decorations
Sharp crystalline shards slice out
in every direction – beware
the sweet snowflakes, they’ll cut you!

Reindeer and Santa, serial killers
of untold millions.  The 12 Days of Christmas
collect a cavalcade of carnage, in geometric
progression.  (Those ten lords a-leapin’
careen desperately to avoid the gunfire.)

The Tannenbaum Taliban—
firetraps in the slow-making—
leave their loose spiky tresses
on the hardwood floors, waiting
for Osama dryness to turn tinder tricks.

“Death-ember” might be a better word
for the last month of the year.
Bridging the Sagicorn transition
Winter Solstices were blood sacrifices
times past.  Druids died for the future.

It’s a time for entrails, Month 12.
Be it sausages and stuffing or necromancy
the somber funerals of red and green
wakes and the egg-nog and rum flavor
celebrate its layoffs and suicides.

Yes, it’s a regimented cheeriness
The music even belies the schizophrenia.
“Joy to the World” and “O Come Immanuel”
“I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus”
and the blood-drenched “Carol of the Bells.”

Omens abound, this Stepfordized forcefed fiesta
from the ad firm Avarice, Depression and Muerte.
The competition is oh-so-fierce, religions
Vying for the title “Most-Holy Addiction”, creating
Christian-Jewish-Muslim-Secular Battlefields along the way.

It’s a time to compare booty and loot and despair at being wanting.
It’s a time for resolving to do better, schmoes on the flip side.
It’s a time to argue over ribbons and bows, kiddle-kids.
It’s a time to lose oneself in the holiday melee.
(Courtesy of Milton Bradley and Absolut.)

We can’t get away from the mayhem.
It’s everywhere about, a Sega-Nintendo war,
carried out in Board Rooms and Toy Stores
directed by a hidden malevolent psyche—
Ignore the corporate shill in the Santa Suit!

No, a Hallmark façade can’t cover the debris.
The spike in self-murder arises
while the outdoor temperature inversely concurs.
The pressure inside and out gains steam
until the orgasmic rage explodes.

The Saturnalia of ancient times is preferable
that lustful orgy of sex, feasting and desires
unleashed and sated.  The time deserves an antidote
today to Adolf’s Aryan-dear games (business
mergers, acquisitions and general shitting).

Instead, we have the holly and the ivy
racing with each other to claim which makes
the better nooses to choke with.
Mistletoe, that joyous clump, lies in wait for you
its luscious fruit only too happy to kill.

The records spin, and the emparkaed parents
drive themselves to drivel and gravel
looking for that specious toy every kid must have.
The striving to stay secure in a middle-class
paradise (that never was) has begummed our short hairs!

All we want is to be loved; those shimmering packages
we set under the trees labeled “To Laura, from George,”
symbolize our capacity and our emptiness.
Each year we climb over each other to overcome
the beliefs that we are merely overgrown worms.

The luckiest among us treat Deathember like any other.
Just winter days fraught with their own perils.
For my part, I let the mystical air wash
over me on the year’s shortest day.
A natural miracle that comes but once every 365.

I struggle to negotiate shopper-littered streets
the hustle-razzle-dazzle not much my speed.
Though I long to have a special someone
for whom I wish to get that lovely gift
(and put through the same misery in return).

Is it a secret blessing to be single for the Holidays?
The choices I can make, all up to me alone.
Ah, but then I have found on my own the benefit
of accepting where I sit in this trademarked world,
I who have no brand to call my home.

Yes, the sadness of the time passing, the gifts
that won’t be delivered course through my blood
and the green focus is sometimes my own
wondering about me, my self-centered regard.
All I can do is write a poem or two to mark the wounds.

I think this jaundice of mine can help heal you—
the yellow-smoke taste of real observation
serves as a reminder that what you see is true.
It really is as bad as it seems.
(Isn’t it just the vision of registered loveliness?)

To some this might seem the rankest of presents.
I know some would rather look past the reality,
the wool on their bodies keeps them in baaing content.
But here you are, with me in this moment.
Say it with me loud and clear:  “Christmas Sucks!”

Shout it from the rooftops and the promontories!
Let a glad bitterness cleanse the world of despair!
The tintinnabulation of the beleaguered and the belabored.
We are all in this gruesomeness together.
Let us belch a discontented sigh in unison.

For the satisfaction in feeling what is in front of me,
that is what I have to share with you.
This whimsical amphigory has eructed forth
into this wistful existence, from inside the longing installed
long ago under artificial snow stuck on plastic tines.

I became the urban planner for the community of packages
sitting below Christmas Tree Mountain,
I wished for a world of love and gingerbread,
of games and laughing under the wild moonlight.
While my dad drank his nights into oblivion.

The traumas scarred my etheric body,
and I struggle to understand compassion.
But it doesn’t arise from the fantasies I wished for.
It rests with my feet as I walk through dead leaves
on cold, hard ground frosted with winter.

The growth of day begins on the shortest day, after all.
And thankfully it precedes that 25th mark of the month.
I offer you that restful thought to combat
against the relentless of the time.  Take warmth
and comfort in knowing it really is that bad.



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