Sunday, April 23, 2017

Valentinian II

Valentinian II

Toy chariots and barbed crucifixes...
playthings for an Augustus...
for a four year old emperor.

From my porphyry sarcophagus,
a brother laid beside me....
No bride or lover to grieve.

My father battle-dead....

Milan a prison....

Rats are in the wine
Rats are in the wine
Strangle the child.

The next Augustus 
used my ribs
to swirl and toss salad.

Notebook Crackles: 4

Notebook Crackles: 4

Havre Best Western: slightly parted lips,
gaudy-gold strapless dress, a fifty-or-so brunette
lurches in heels, glitters across the motel lobby.
Fragrance of abandoned straw bale gardening.

Evening check-in: free cookie, digital room clock,
Chinese take-out down the street, anti-inflammatory
meds for the stove-ups,  cheap pillow-top mints....
Aging sky... a grumblin' thunderstorm outside.  

Motel bar: a gaggle of fly-specked
commercial realtors, lip-biters in golfer pastels, 
cell phones 'n chuckles, peel bottle labels,
stare at a Braves-on-mute TV game.

Tongue-stud barmaid scans you, Nice better-days
snap shirt, cowboy.  She pours a free whiskey ditch,
says she made a wood table from three farmyard gates.
says, Eyes the road, not them small roadside crosses.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Notebook Crackles: 3

Notebook Crackles: 3

A bullet-pocked 1916 farmhouse
framed by warped-boards...
slow coulee miles from sweet care.

Past where a back door
once swung loose on leather hinges
for neighbors... for a scones 'n coffee welcome,
dead batteries... old tires...
echo of ghost-knuckles tapping
on half a maple breakfast table.

Wild ponies gone...
roping gloves pitched downhill... 
buckskin memory-particles.

Arthur Schnitzler

Arthur Schnitzler

Arthur Schnitzler
(May 15, 1862 - October 21, 1931)

From a grand hotel terrace...
through French doors....

Vienna.  My home is gone
with... women who loved.

From a terrace:
a plush bed and nearby a table tray:
purple grapes, wedges of white cheese.

Young hotel maid in powder blue...
lilac ballet slippers.... She falls
upon the passion-used bed, rolls.

Vanilla, rose, sandalwood.

Apricot years are gone.
Eternity is a hotel terrace...
cold square tile... skeletal feet.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Notebook Crackles: 2

Notebook Crackles: 2

Burning barrel night fire
a mile or two south...
a breakfast leftovers smell.

Love is more than longing
or turned corners.

The clock declares:
there's an inky rift in the cosmos.

A ghost Hound leaves a message on your phone:
Where I river-crossed, bucktoothed angels
are handing out store bought cookies.

Max Frisch

The Dream
(Ferdinand Hodler, 1897)

Max Frisch
(May 15, 1911 - April 4, 1991)

The way she sits legs agape
on a sofa... slow-unbuttons her blouse...
cedary musk-rose perfume... how she pats
the plush cushion where I am to sit.

Death is moored to preceding sexuality.
A weekend-only lover, she stabs open 
a bottle of white wine with a penknife.
One oceanic... Friday into Sunday.

In a New York eternity... the Studebaker...
a cotton brassiere dropped past my shoulder.
After-world: rain... moderate wind... scent
of buttery shortbread... a Zurich cupcake cafe.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Notebook Crackles: 1

Notebook Crackles: 1

Ratshot, .22 or .357, fired from six yards....
No rattler penetration from a wide pellet pattern.

Town lights south of the freeway, a sand-yellow sky,
go-for-broke flapjacks with butter, a side of sliced orange.

Desperate freestyle swimming... at five miles an hour
in your own pulmonary artery, you are faint... unclear.