The Monster and Us

Just the doubt, you know, the
was it the monster, my monster,
if a monster can belong to anyone
except by eating them. Or was it my
natural self
in all its glory,
in its nothingness,
one of my transparent-translucent shimmery cameos:
spirit over the waters/man on the street?

Because we have married,
become one flesh,
wear the same size.
The monster and I, I mean—
before I knew you, always. Shit,
we dig the same soundtracks,
trade dirty emojis—all of it.
Yet are not the same.

And looking back on you and I,
because I love you now,
because I loved you then and love you
still and only and always will,
the sting of each mistake
trailing smoke behind us
that’s this body burning off–
I don’t know if it’s sad.

Some days I snapped at you and missed.
I have slept on my feet; lain alert.
And nearly, though I pray not yet,
lain waste—yes, me, with no monster to blame.

But there’s treasure in your neck, and I
will find it. There is a fire
in the afterlife, but it is
only a gate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I Reminisce on O. Avenue

The chicken had burnt, and it had got
quiet in there since the game came on,
so I stepped out to remember her
like I sometimes do, but I
hadn’t passed the opening mood
when a train wreck passed in a vinyl suit,
dictating a letter to her ex.

I sat on the steps, throne
of my side of the duplex.
The smudged air cleared.
The scarred moon shone.
There are no more cigarettes
on earth, but they still own
moments like this.

Back to my memory,
though she’d surely forgotten me.
No, she wasn’t the prettiest or
the wittiest I saw.
When people can be open
but have flavor, is all.

 

 

 

 

 

Generosity is the Disposition of the Dwellers of Paradise

And you yawning on another lawn full of waterfalls,
us again where the heart dilates and laughter spills
all over the landscaping, as another dawn escapes
perfect and pink into daylight and our stomachs grumble,
anticipating hunger without fear.

Thinking of certain friends, picturing them here,
settling for retelling certain scenes. Memories
used to waiting on another side of Heaven—
shaded by lazy trees maybe, feet in a lake getting pecked
by little fish, you get the idea—they carry through here
on the breeze, make music like muted tambourines.
Shhh! Weaving in and out of the cries at the gates,
that distant singing.

Let them in, too, with a great creaking and streaming!
Generosity is the disposition of the dwellers of paradise.
All you need is given. All you need is given.

 

 

Nixon in China

That liar and cheat
all the way in the Farthest East
for world peace.

Would it be wise
to help them rise?

Imagine, if you dare with him,
the whole world on its knees
before you.

Need they adore you?

Nixon sneering in a
central office with no AC,
wanting a drink besides tea.
Demanding numbers.

In long black socks,
watching art,
thinking ethnic slurs.
Jesus, the heat.

Applauding.
Concentrating on being commanding.
Joining China standing.

 

 

Aside From My Foot Being on Fire, Everything’s Actually Pretty Incredible

AAAAAAAAAAH!!!

FIIIIRE!!!

FUUUUUCK!!! MY FOOT’S ON FIRE! JESUS HOLY
FUCK PUT IT OUT!

PUT IT OOOOOOUT! AAAIII—

I don’t even know how it started.
or when.
but MOTHERFUCKER IT FUCKING KILLS!

It’s been at least a year—
JESUS!

On the other hand,
I can’t believe
HOW GODDAMN GOOD
this ICE CREAM is.

BEN & JERRY’S, BABY!

WAFFLE CONE, MOTHERFUCKER!

And this massage is
really getting in there.

I can feel SO MUCH TENSION
just like GUSHING
                           A     W     a     y   .     .     .

And honestly I feel
pretty guilty I even requested it but
BEYONCE’S BREASTS IN MY FACE
are like WORKS OF ART.

Even compared to all these Picassos,
they’re—
MMMMMMMMMMMMMM. . .

—BBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBB!!!

Bbbbbbbbbb is for
BBBBBEEE-YONNN-CEEEEEE!

I love that she thinks that’s funny.

Eating the ice cream from her skin. This is
really leading
            somewhere
                        delicious!

But GODDAMN I just WISH my fucking
FOOT WASN’T ON FIRE!

AH—FUUUCK!
How does it even—
So LONG!

Just—JUST—
ohhhhhhhhhh, elbows.
LOVE when the elbows get in there.

And who even made those bouquets?
How can anything smell so,
I don’t know—
so, like, I guess just GOOD?

Oh and that slight funk when our tongues meet . . .

With only one part feeling any pain,
I guess it’s hard to complain.

And HELL’s BELLS, what a TRIP
all these puppies are!

TICKLISH MOUND OF TICKLING!
RECKLESS TENDER JOY!

In such moonlight.
Ice cream almost not frozen lifted from
HOLY SHIT BEYONCE’S INCREDIBLE–

TOO MUCH! TOO MANY PICASSOS!
TOO RICH SOUL MUSIC!
MOONLIT PUPPY PILES SQUIRMING IN CONSTANT SURPRISE EVERYWHERE! EVERYWHERE I SEE!

These younger women, too—
yes, I get that they’re celebrities, but I don’t
follow the newer stuff. Who even
are they? Whomf—
MMMFF! MMMMMF.
MMMMMMMMMMMMFFFFFFF.

MMMMFUUCK, though!
It’s just except my foot, is all. I know,
again—STILL!

FIRE!

FIIIIIIIIRE!

OH, GOD, OH, GOHOD,
OH GOD OF THIS FUCKING WORLD!!!!