Friday, June 29, 2012


A re-cognified
saying I am you—

First nitrogen
then chlorophyll
then id
now I
then you
forming us
to perceive some inhuman/human beyond,
being this ladder, ascending/descending
from this step then
over to another, where

I and I am the tide wearing
I and I wearing the evening air, wearing
I and I wearing the moonlit night, wearing
I and I wearing the vital you, wearing
out, crying into the cosmos

I am you!

I love your disguises!
I savor the taste of seaming your road dust
relish the flavor of seaming your chickpea
adore the comfort of seaming your dog
enjoy the aroma of seaming your camel
[a new path into Heaven]
delight in the sound of seaming your poet

My passion passes through you
finding our clarity
their laughter
Its generous love
transforming enemies into friends
haters into lovers
becoming essential platelets to this life’s blood
this splattering, dancing laughter…

An echo calling back:
I am you!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


The clematissed sky shimmers like a
dome. The phosphorous firmament uses a
machine’s grammar, spitting missiles wet with
prayers to Jesus blessing grandma and
all the soldiers “over there” uttered
in a bunny suit, face slapped,
innocent. Warmer’s what you get with
a biased epic in your hand.
Your sentiment’s vain, for it surpasses
its goal: getting your hood back.

Surrendering seven times to the war
for the word: Good night untried
poets. Going nowhere, wee Anglo hamsters
re-publicize the ceilings of some mosque
burst open like a spinach tin,
like the condom factory, ejaculated upward
bathing a woman’s form, tripping up
Martyr’s Way, moaning and murmuring, head
aglow, awaking to that detail
you’re dead. You doubt that rose-breasted

grosbeaks form flocks, or knot then
buy the jacarandas in the loaming.
The tulip blooming like some doubled
helix tuning with precision, so sincere,
really. Vernality encrusted into a narcotic
nipple like some memo from beyond
your deployment of criti-poesy writing the
metapome, suggesting the self-reflexive surpoem espousing
a proper feeling, as numbed by
these row breaks evaporating implications. The

way drones melted kids who were
just growing up over there. We
react with loud, poignant communal sighs.
This lion would need bigger wings
than the eagle’s. Would you abandon
your poetry to make him complete?
Judge not before I incise your
eyes hunting for a muse, gaping
into who mother was, a wretched
shadow chipping into radiance. I’ll come

no closer, for this breach twain
she and he seams hallowed space,
a heather brush of carnage for
the calm of bloodied skulls and
torn limbs. Not only are you
an alleged killer, my precious far-out
poesiest, but you also stand accused
of bigotry by those on the
periphery at Darfur, to which you
counter you’re not sure. How candid,

non-denominational reflection and prayer and the
making of bombs inside the spirit-schooners
of the Sahara outside Khartoum, sans
slurs or ignorance, confer over UBUWIM
and the Warrior Poets, none of
whom were ever be-headed in Nicaragua
by Green Beret trainees called pequeno Contras,
or blessed. They would not believe
the frail could inherit the moon
(unless Newt Gingrich sent them there).

Monday, June 25, 2012



Thoughtless giving
Wordless conceiving
A fresh dressed ancient spins America, wandering

Sensing the Sufi
true sleep

Calling out

Vast wise spirit building,
Embellishing Earth with industriousness,
I’m something that’s nothing to you!


Inhabiting foothill huts
a friend says “see Yabyum”
floor bound cross-
legged pillow sitting
face to face
round each neck
swaying sighs

Sacred rep
aerational Republicans
fuck four priests chanting

Yee-haa! Lightening Strikes the Pink Hole!


and tediously developed ideals
evolving gray corporate censorship
inform me my karma was
born to be where freedom’s
a belief
no one believes

and there ain’t no kicks
something’s always made of Nothing



Illusions of Nothing manifest something
Nothing illusions something manifest of
Something manifests nothing of illusions

Jesus Christ


Ululating with eyes closed, seeing power


The campus eccentric imagines himself the only actual man there at the middle class programming institute for obscurity and homogeny, whose adherents find a moving expression of success in rows of white and pastel-colored homes with chemical lawns and cyber-realities everyone’s bathing in and feeling the same about:


All this while Dharma Bums stalk their wilder-ness listening
finding ecstasy in the stars
searching for the Dark Secret

The origin of stagnant invisible shit civilization—realizing everyone has white ceramic toilets to take big dirty craps in like bears on the mountains

But it’s all washed away
and nobody says shit
or realizes they come from it and sea scum

They spend days washing their hands with soap they’d rather eat


And though I love America
I hate hunters
they slaughter alert beings

And for each victim, they’ll be reborn a thousand times

To re-suffer the ensuing horrors of being
lectured to by me, trapped
in rustic mountain taverns
cozy to parlor-puff scribes
but wretched to the Psalmists of pond and peak

Yet charming still to Armenian grocers
who sing Choke, Choke, you do not see how great Ah-mary-kah eez

And those well-meaning tongue-tied Baptists on a church binge forgetting to insert the contraception

They must be assholes


When they heard I didn’t kill animals
but only clumb mountains
swam in ponds
they dismissed me

a hopeless eccentric
a void perimeter stuffed with illusion

Where the milk is fine
but more cows feed
than people

Whenever a sparrow might hop along some veranda with wet feet


And the secret of ascent is bop
vast hop empty-
skulls dancing
rock to stone not
dithering, awake
the mountain


Praying all thoughtful things will quit fussing and jobbing and feel It

Serenity, madness, ecstasy

Beginning and ending
praying for all to be
just as bare
likewise loved, also
a growing flower and
see the eyes of All and
behind It composure and


But we’re all sunk in shit, mules vexed by whatever system we choose to plow


But we can’t fall off a mountain


What’s it all mean

The plum is ripe
The Buddha’s in the Garden


Cheer up slaves
horrify your despots
at home and abroad

Be Zen lunatic bards bopping old desert paths


The whole thing’s a world adrift
A dharma bum refusing to consume
or work for his rights

Refrigerators, microwaves, I-pads, hair oils, deodorant and junk

Imprisoned in the privilege system

Produce, consume, work
Produce, consume, work

Automatically renewing everything every year

I call for a rucksack evolution
Billions of visions wandering Earth
heading for the mountains
rivers and seas to
see, pray, meditate
making children laugh
old men glad
young girls happy
old girls happier

Everything seams a Zen lunatic poem writing Its mind without reason

Being kind
and by startling acts of benign oddness
keep infecting everyone with dreams of undying autonomy

Go fucking viral

As Tathagata plays in the Garden


And there’s wisdom in Zen lunacy

Just walk down any suburban street and pass house after house after house on both sides with the lamp lights shining golden, and inside the little blue squares transmitting electronic clouds of information among minds

Every family glued to the spume of electromagnetic dust
no one talking
silence in the yards

Then dogs barking because you pass by on foot not wheels

The symbol being the symbol itself
Gautama tending the Garden


The billions and billions of the One Eye
believe they’re not hurting anyone
hiding in there
the apparent I within that Eye

And I see myself in my world prowling suburbia
and Main Street
passing blue electronic-mirrored windows denoting false matrices

Alone, my thoughts seem the only thoughts not glued to the Master Switch


“Who played this cruel joke
on bloke after bloke,
packing like a rat,
across the desert flat?”

I’m telling you, a big police revolution’s coming

“Was it God got mad,
like the Indian cad,
who was only a giver,
crooked like the river?”

No! There’s going to be a rucksack evolution

“Gave you a garden,
let it all harden,
then comes the flood,
and the loss of your blood?”

Everything is possible

“Pray tell us good buddy,
and don’t make it muddy,
who played this trick
on Harry and Dick,
and why is so mean,
this eternal scene
just what’s the point,
of this whole joint?”

I am empty space—I am all things
I am


One man practicing kindness in his wilder-ness seems worth every Temple his world pulls


I am emptiness
I see starshine in a puddle
I spit in the puddle
obliterating the star
and ask

“Is the star real?”

And scream safe from earshot of the Lunatic Bus

“I won’t come down again!
I’m a blank being ecstasized in the Infinite True Body!”
then I see the star’s re-appeared in the puddle

The Buddha’s in the Garden


Among the Dead, in the rich silent hush of the Pure Awakened Land
I realize I’m a bliss heir
and that the final sin, the worst, is righteousness
because there is only Silence, then
a silence so intense you can hear the blood roar in your ears
and louder than that the Unexplained Whine of Carbon-based Wisdom

The unsolved cry of Silence Itself

Reminding you of something you’ve long forgotten
the certain, definite Truth

The roaring silence of the Diamond


Deliver flower sermons to disappointed disciples
try taming the bull of mind essence
abandon It for Nothing
party with the neighborhood butcher
and next door car salesman
the murderers of dreamy Western philosophy

Then re-member your self


The Awakened who, leading
ants from her pantry with honey to her garden
speaking to them on hands and knees about new veins of Joy

Feed others
compassion’s the guide star
fighting is ugly

Beg! Be humble!


The world appears despite my ignorance
despite God, who emanates my ignorance
as the image itself, making
why sew, seamingly

As Tathagata plays in the Garden


Dharma bums had springtime in their hearts when the blooms were girdling
and the birds dropped turds on surprised cats who wished to eat them


And the closer we got to real matter
rock, fire, wood and smoke
the more spiritual the world became


And it all ended in tears because those who were good remained in heaven
having been there from the beginning
A cosmic remnant not wishing for a personal god in all the impersonal matter

‘Look at the Void!
It seams ever stellar!’


The innumerable worlds of the Milky Way—just words


Are we all beat spirits
refusing to believe
nothing is nothing
that we’re born to lose


Our loved ones
and dear friends


And finally our Self

Only to see Death proved

O sad, kind flesh,
there is no answer,
only the limitations of Eternity

As Gautama tends the Garden

[1] A poetic response to The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac. All quotes are from the novel.

Friday, June 22, 2012


Word like wound
            wound the metaphor
a strange attraction
            to ward the literal

Feeling the membrane sweat
from the inside

Like this
of some black hole
            scattering ashes

As if blowing a saturated trombone

Alert the Offspring, Father’s
            mutating Mother’s recursive symmetries
an Arabesque that

Weaves patterns of

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


[re: Richard Brautigan]

Disdainful of hippies, you seemed Kafka’s queer cousin.

Knowing too much about your demons, you made peace with them, sharing the same world.

Feeling your romantic self the only self, shooting at the moon,
drunk on George Dickel, down a sloppy back road, you once threw a stone through a cop shop window, hoping to end up housed and fed, but got fined instead. 

It helped drive you mad, a little like that O. Henry story. Except for the big sky. You were in Montana.

Ferlinghetti, that old fuck, called you a child, like Emerson bemoaned Thoreau. You were more in tune with trout than Larry, who never got merry without revolution. A real man, he.

You dealt with them as long as you could, and then one day you just quit, feeling it odd how the plain things in life live on while life itself gets trickier.

After talking with Marcia, you felt like clay excavated from your garden.
As you looked out over the Pacific Ocean in your favorite chair, you decided to take a little target practice, using all your bullets but one to put a hole in everything she ever touched. 

The last was saved for your brain. She’d touched that, too. Everything touched it. Nothing would leave it alone. Not even the clouds.

When Robert found you a month later on the living room floor, the smell nearly drove him away. He wrenched the .44 Magnum from your stiff hand and found the brief note you left. It was under your right arm, spattered in brains and blood. 

Funny to the very end, it said: “Messy isn’t it?”

And the ocean breeze whistled through the holes in your house like laughter.

Monday, June 18, 2012


Of humankind’s first a-spedience
and the flavored frowerin fop,
whose upliftin tenses invited disjoy
of Edenic fruits intraduh whorl,
until dys creetcha—
displaced his in hern,
loosiniz perfik place: 

Chant divine syrup,
whose first taut elected dysgerm,
emergent from duh chemicals in ma mond—
a pathology:

if Turtle Island delights ya more
with its Niagara waters roar
quickened by this augur of po-rin spirit;
I here summon ye help in creatin disimpudent din

And you,
sacred resolve,
idealizin a candid wit,
indicatin Its self—
discernin; we at first
were here, potent wings out
spreadin squat gloomin astride

A pregnant chasm, in love.

What’s faint in me lot up,
What-air’s small heave high and protract;
that t’the size a this pozin task
I might assert me abidin trust,
exposin Nature’s totem to duh people
and fuck them.

Friday, June 15, 2012


Few will sit here.
Most need liaisons 

To feel the precision and
the plethora

intensifying their diversity—
Some soap deodorizing clarity—

Cleansing every part of Its secret speech,
describing your lathering dance that

rinses away—
Revealing nothing.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


A review of Robert Coover’s The Public Burning, The Viking Press, New York, 1977

Richard Milhaus Nixon, molested by his father as a boy, having become perverse himself throughout his thought and actions, finds his career about to launch once he’s been brutally raped, anally, by a meme he identifies as Uncle Sam.

This sexual devastation seems a rite all future POTUSes must undergo at some point, a rite that instills in them the necessary presidential timber, according to Nixon, the predominant voice and viewpoint in Robert Coover’s The Public Burning.[i]

The fact is, though it was published 35 years ago, this novel may be just as relevant in this Presidential election year as it was when it was published. Americans still [as always, apparently] demand a masculine Christian capable of killing for God & Country. And they’ve been lucky lately, getting macho-man killers in spades: Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Reagan, the Bushes, perhaps the Clintons, and, now definitely Obama.

According to Nixon about halfway through the novel, which breathlessly covers the last three days of the Rosenbergs’ lives before they’re to be publicly executed in the electric chair in Times Square before a worldwide television audience, the reason Eisenhower was so great and had become President was that “he knew how to kill.” Nixon wondered if he could do the same. [258]

It seems that Nixon’s primary inner conflict about the Rosenbergs, according to the way Coover speaks him, is between pity and heroism and thoroughly delusional. Nixon comes across as a communist and fascist appeaser, in other words enthralled by the authoritarian position, where such folks as “premature anti-fascist[s]” thwart the patriotic war against the Phantom where “justice is entertainment.” [121]

The kind of person Nixon is shows itself in the dimensions of his existential world: “I felt caught up in some endless quest, a martyr to duty, but duty to what? My self perhaps, its creation and improvement, the need to show I had what it takes, that I deserved no matter what I got…” [298]

Are there any delusional would-be or actual killers among the current and former 2012 candidates? They seem to be aspiring killers for sure [Ron Paul excepted], if they don’t already have a few bodies strewn here and there throughout their past. We know even Obama killed Osama and other bad people [a few of them American citizens. At least the Rosenbergs had a “trial”].  Coover’s Nixon is definitely in this mode, with a strong possibility, which he hints at himself, of a body already somewhere in his past, buried like its repressed memory. He’s a confessed rapist and sexual mess. But he can’t help but wonder whether or not a Quaker, raised by Grandma Milhaus, could actually kill someone, especially decent, possibly even innocent people like Julius and Ethel Rosenberg: “Could I kill, I wondered? If it came to that, could I kill? Not something easy like the Rosenbergs, but this crowd in here…if they got in my way…? Why not? Killing was as meaningless as anything else.” [345][ii]

In the act of the Rosenbergs’ heinous public slaughter, Nixon realizes a few things that, if enough regular folks understood, there would be no America, no USSR, no troubles. Consider Coover’s tense choices. It feels a bit odd that Nixon’s speaking the past tense, and yet the action feels as if it were presently happening. Also, Nixon rarely thinks at all about the future, and when he does it’s a distant future that will build monuments to him once he’s gone. I think this suggests that Coover’s Nixon has lost touch with the present tense—an American symptom resulting from being trapped inside a Disney/Bernays’ spectacle.[iii] In this sense, especially toward the end at the bottom of page 473, it’s implied that the reader, who is by extension/in-tension the people, could be insane [unless part of some unspoken intelligence that knows better]. It’s the situation that’s insane. And Nixon personifies the peoples’ systemic situation…the mode in which we’re all mere actors on a stage.

Throughout the novel one might read echoes of Marshall McLuhan, Guy Debord’s spectacle, the psychogeography of Deleuze and Guattari, the self-reflexivity and metafictive qualities of Coover’s pomo contemporaries in the way Nixon’s poetic neurosis/delusion becomes the textual pathology that seams the American citizen’s dis-ease together forming society’s schizoid insanity.

Consider Chapter 18, “The National Poet Laureate[iv] Meditates on the Art of Revelation,” in which Nixon says: “Poetry is the art of subordinating facts to the imagination…fakery in allegiance to the truth…objectivity is Gnostic…as an ideal perhaps even immoral, that only through the frankly biased and distorting lens of art is any real grasp of the facts—not to mention Ultimate Truth—even remotely possible.” [320]

From here on the narrator grows increasingly schizoid until it becomes quite clear that The Burning Game is an Avant-Pop presentation of the schizoid American psyche, that the USA has evolved into a pop culture spectacle and something that’s perhaps as dangerous, if not more dangerous in light of its nuclear weapons, thinning greatly any margin of error, than Germany in the 1930s. The social Darwinism of “manifest destiny” ranks right up there with Hitler’s Aryan master race when it comes to its mythomaniacal hucksterism. Each carries the “white man’s burden” making a pathetic, tragic mess of things.

Nixon’s deepest insight: “…this is not happening to me alone, I thought desperately, or tried to think, as [Uncle Sam] pounded deeper and deeper, destroying everything, even my senses, my consciousness—but to the nation as well!” [532]

The people attain their exceptional American timber in the way they’re screwed. What goes around comes around. The people will, at some point, screw Uncle Sam the way Nixon did in Times Square [read the book!]. So, to say that Uncle Sam or Ike or any of the nation’s illustrious leaders were evil, “you might as well say that America itself was evil…that exemplary transcendence, through action and beauty, of the strong man’s wild streak, which…is what the West is all about,” [241] is an evil endeavor.

When Nixon discovers the truth about Uncle Sam: “You didn’t have to kill them! You just did it for fun! You’re a … a butcher! a beast! You’re no better than the Phantom!”, Uncle Sam replies: “It ain’t easy holdin’ a community together, order ain’t what comes natural, you know that, boy, and a lotta people gotta get killt tryin’ to pretend it is, that’s how the game is played.”

“’You’ve…you’ve changed,’ I [Nixon] said, my voice shaking. “You’re not the same as when I was a boy!” --- “You’re forty years old, son: time you was weaned! gotta love me like I really am: Sam Slick the Yankee Peddler, gun-totin’ hustler and tooth-‘n’-claw tamer of heathen wilderness, lusty and in everything a screamin’ meddler, novus ball-bustin’ ordo seclorum, that’s me, boy—and goodnight Mrs. Calabash to any damfool what gets in my way!”

Ever notice when someone tells you to grow up, get over it, [or that you’re delusional or in denial or suffering from a messiah complex] they’re really asking you to buy into their fantasy and play your part in it? We’re all guilty of it. This review’s guilty of it. We cycle between plaintiff and defendant depending on the situation. That’s what it seems being American is all about in Coover’s The Public Burning—the willingness to participate in the national fiction because it’s the path of least resistance, which makes it a true and courageous novel. Courageous because Coover put himself inside Nixon while Nixon was still alive. He let Nixon possess him the way Uncle Sam possessed Nixon. He shows that Nixon, an indefensible cad at the time, was a human being like the rest of us. Coover is Nixon. The reader is Nixon. I am Nixon. We cycle between demon and angel depending on the perceived situation [“we” being a subset of “everybody,” you might not be included. Only you would know.].

Finally, there’s a difference between childish and child-like. Is it childish or child-like to pray for everyone before going to bed at night? Is it childish or childlike to engage in Nixonian phantasy? When you’re Nixon, it’s childish. When you’re Coover, childlike.  The difference being one nauseates, the other thrills. And The Public Burning succeeds at both.

[i] I find Thomas R. Edwards’ 1977 New York Times review an interesting counterpoint to my own. The difference, I think, is what we hear and how we hear it. I believe Coover would find Edwards’ view problematic on several fronts. But I’m only guessing…
[ii] This foreshadows the illegal bombing of Cambodia, the carpet-bombing and war crimes in Vietnam. Elsewhere in the novel, Coover plants hints of the future Watergate and anti-war movement and protestors. One sees Nixon’s political psyche starting to bloom, able to trace it from its seedling status, abused sprout up to the current messy stink flower.
[iii] Disney and propaganda; Edward Bernays 1, 2, 3, 4—Happiness Machines, The Engineering of Consent, There Is A Policeman Inside All Our Heads: He Must Be Destroyed, and limousine liberalism [sic]; and spectacle, where in which authentic social life has been replaced with its representation: "All that was once directly lived has become mere representation." Debord argues that the history of social life can be understood as "the decline of being into having, and having into merely appearing." This condition, according to Debord, is the "historical moment at which the commodity completes its colonization of social life." [Wikipedia, The Society of the Spectacle, by Guy DeBord].
[iv] The Rosenbergs were executed in 1953. Interestingly, there was no “poet laureate” from 1953-55. William Carlos Williams was appointed to serve from 1952-55, but had been investigated by the FBI for communist sympathies. He also refused to be fingerprinted or undergo other such indignities. Coover makes Nixon the de facto poet laureate for that time, which enables him to mock Faulkner by having Nixon sing his praises. The novel is stuffed with these kinds of pleasures.

Monday, June 11, 2012


Jesus freaks, hallelujah
hands, sway in the breeze
believing they’re saved

they observe
without perception,
having misread Revelations 18


Jesus will rule without loathing
invited to act by the many-bladed mind of His Father
unmoved by the grass He’s mowing


These apes of “Christ”
[running their own experiments]
want a dis-ease they never believed in
to answer their trivial prayers


In the end,
they might fail to avert
the chilling fire

They never engaged,
lo[o]sing It in terror

Friday, June 8, 2012


Phases do not probe.
The luminosity of desertion
subsists for those too petrified
by time

To say anything

Force not needing to
insist upon its function

or activity.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


Some poets feel like parasitical mushrooms made of hallucinogens or poison, dependent on your point of view. They can pop up anywhere at any time in their black berets and avant-garde soldier uniforms, blood dripping from each of their punctuation marks, raping, killing, cooking and eating clueless [but not innocent] business majors who appear in their comp class because it’s a requirement, not just the cannibalism but the course itself. This requirement’s like Paula Deen taking Anthony Bourdain up her overextended arse. It’s all part of the program. So we must excuse them. Like Second Lieutenant William Calley and sergeants Wuterich and Bales, and the late great Gordon Kahl, we’re all just living out our missions the best we can. And don’t forget, it’s not easy being an avant-garde poet warrior in a financial world where everyone ignores you.

Remember, ambitious people have mothers who love them, too.

Monday, June 4, 2012


On the veranda a child will croon
and the Earth listen, terrorized

And Heaven’s hoop will maintain the scourge
knowing nothing.

Therefore, dominate your enemies.

Look happy.

Friday, June 1, 2012

THESE DAYS [Composed 1-6-12]

You picked your guitar and sang like a farmer getting at something about jobs, but not quite, something about the walls and cages made by and for the People’s labor, rooms that left us broke and suffocated, but not as busted and choked (so they say) as we were before we built them and enclosed ourselves to borrow and consume.

“Neither a lender nor a borrower be” is a savage notion, but you didn’t write about Franklin, did you? You probably did. You wrote about everything and everyone. When you died you allegedly left a 400-page bibliography of your work. According to the Poetry Foundation, you were very productive.

Now we at least have, or recently had anyway, some dust in our throats for victuals to live on ‘til we croak on our feet numb with scrambled memories of booze-addled Saturday nights and sleepy Sabbath afternoons. And the town’s obits seldom run half the page.

Sixty minutes covers everything they want us to know. What they’re saying of your America they’re saying in a binary code that refuses to flip-flop, with the volken or masses or mob you so loved listening for their system’s inner child, as you once did, moved by its pulse not its diction, looking for the power.

They will not occupy their wilder-ness. That terrifies them. The wild is a scalping terr’rist Injun. Look Out!

These days our sense of time has removed us from the glimmering dawn of illuminated life amusing itself in meadows under vast heavens of falling, thoughtless rain. These days we’re marking voices that leave our tongues wagging and ears wriggling with nonsense and lies.

America before Columbus (did you write of him, too?) was a pond alive with minnows and perch, snappers and loons, reflecting a firmament astir with hawks and herons, surrounded by forest eyelashes occupied by Iroquois, a solid forehead roamed by Oglala Sioux and a chin carved of solid Cherokee.

Your problem became America’s problem, preferring Emerson to Muir or Thoreau, parlor over pond and peak.

Happy Birthday, Mr. Sandburg. They’ve found some rhyme in their reason thanks to your Lincoln, but we lost our freedom in the expediencies of gitter done and legalese. You were the humble, twanging Wagner of the Great Plains and kinda saw it coming cause you knew the city and such—