The Stark Comma

Grifted from the madness of it all.


the old man on
the boardwalk is a wreck. he’s shouting
to himself, shouts, “tourists go
home!” even though

all the tourists have gone home; into
beds with familiar dead skin pillows
and deadbolt dreams. he lights up and

sits in the sand. he cries, cries as we
all do, with hunched shoulder and
unpolished tense up. his head bobbin

up and down, no marlin no
more. never was a marlin on
the end. the tourists up in the new york, they
straighten their family marlin frame.

maybe he was a painter, not the four wall kind
but the four corner kind. dog at feet as he
brushed anonymity in New England. Maybe

he was a pinter and a fighter. bruised
his knuckle brawlin some portrait in
dive: Lubbock. “go home tourists!” he
continues. the ocean

mirrored salt lap. went up, patted his

shoulder. “soon.”

but for the crying fits

the concrete in the garage
is cold, the
coffee in the slender
mug is hot; what lukewarm
flesh in the middle. pipe
draw dream concludes
that we all miss


threw my sister’s dog a stick today; sailed halfway cross the leaf riddled yard and landed next to a dying bush. dog bolted as if first stick ever thrown and picking

it up with vigor, she ran three laps round me before dropping it at my spirit plume pruned jean feet. stick had teeth marks and stripped bark on its end. dog wagged its tail for

another winded throw, so, picked it
up and whipped by dead bush
again. dog lost interest and sat in
front of fence, waiting for a squirrel that never came.

fitzroy lamp

gaseous swirl ’62-
no flame.
I loved you more than Hughes,
even when your Fitzroy lamp
flickered. let’s meet for
vodka under a cratered
heave: your
bees and
my caricature cleave.


neuroses build
relationships lessen
shrine to self set up top
shelf. you ain’t 12 no

more, who do you think
you’re kiddin’. in debt not
with paper but to a follicle
fallout and undiagnosed
repression. pathological

in the, what the fuck am I
doin’ typa slide. hey, it’s
okay as we all are in that
goddamned cliché concordia


captain, no captain slush it
down ya salient sailor. now,

wipe that salt and


bixby burnin

bixby burnin mad. peculiar
thought metropolis. harbinger?
to repression or noir or nude
renoir; salad nights.

there are pirates and
devils swarming streets;
midday parade play, a social
pocket watch delirium:
red blouse tremens. there is
not a pathos
out. this play based on
valerian day after day
catchy one night stand


with foam. patron to foam


Bixby is burnin, they all
chant in
quiet alarm clock glow.


shelled out a few greenbacks at
a los angeles estate sale
while back. snagged a brass
aviation barometer from the
deceased in the hills.
doesn’t work.

I keep it though, mostly
as a paperweight for my sheets;
stack in the wind on a deck, edges
flap but stay in place. I think this
will be one memento that
I keep until eighty. There’s something
about this piece that speaks to
that thing inside of me.
28 stormy
29 rain
30 fair
31 very dry

yes yes

I am pan am: or aviator: or broken.

in heat

we are all just
shadows humpin’
yellow lines and
gravel. tall, thin with
trenchcoat- breeze
give those camel hair
flaps flutter brush up

and like a sonofabitch
in heat, I hump because
I don’t know what



I tore through dumpster
street by street- brisk
strokes. The tortoise blue
blur heaved nothing

at me. Entered teahouse
triage and took a
barstool bath as
chamomile pressed all

it had. Mexico City
just sits there man-
a fuck you to caballero
clown grit, what

a strop. She, being my
sister, prattled on too
much about prattling on
too much or if the nod

I gave. Chinoise oolong
ceiling looked like self
putty; putty knife traced and
looked up for a spell. Why

am I an asshole?

[ ]

Chin wobbled as I go
bald; tortoise.

the seven wonders of a poet’s world

that bar just off main.
that becoming blonde in summer dress off.
that breeze circuit cricket sun dive.
that empty bottle of gallant red.
that conversation with self on honeydew mattress.
that full sheet genius cooked up under three at three.
that humanity sprawl spool where ideas always dye.

and the tourists come with bulbs
dangling to snap a few and ruin
what turns all into ruins


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