Three Poems by Bradley Mason Hamlin

Posted in Bradley Mason Hamlin with tags on December 15, 2015 by Scot

Donald Duck Eats Turkey Legs

If we could ever
keep in mind

all the strange
things
we’ve done

lifetime after lifetime
maybe we’d go mad

swimming
straight up
against that waterfall
crashing
down

roaring
like endless drunken
dreams

another beer
fearing
one more bare-knuckle
fight

the right woman
wrong town

singing, laughing
killing
sometimes

falling
to earth
and praying
to gods unknown

or gods
terrible close
to heart

suffering
for the mind
body,
spirit

crying
floating
on astral planes
of fresh coffee
whisky, wine
and tantric sex

here we are
again
transcending

before
we fall.

____________

Employee No. 23
Society
the irritated faces
atrocious attitudes
unkindness incorporated
and me working
within their system
infected
changing
molecules screaming
I
me
a monster, too
and I
swing my fists
of fury at them
constantly
kicking
jumping off cliffs
with little hope
for survival
crying mutiny
as I mutate
again
becoming more like
them
accepted
at the water cooler
now
and therefore
useless.

____________

Wings of Hell

 

in the middle
of dead dark morning
waking to sound of horrible wings
crashing overhead

heart beating wildly
leaping off bed
trying to let eyes adjust
expecting to see
a monstrous succubus
and flying straight for me

I fumbled with flashlight
beaming into high corners
of the room …
but found nothing

In the rest room
I pissed out some rum
heart beating irregular
then shuffling back
to blankets
closing eyes
and thinking of crows

impossibly loud ravens
outside
overhead
somehow
couldn’t have been a bat from hell
couldn’t have been actually
inside
anything
other than my own mind

but in daylight
my wife said
it was obviously Satan.

BOOK REVIEW:  Church: Retrospective by Missy Church

Posted in Bill Gainer with tags on December 10, 2015 by Scot

church book

Reviewed by Bill Gainer

 

 

Missy Church – is someone who knows how to pull herself through the muck, slush, beauty and passion of life’s mind fields.  Her poems are woven from the fiber of what makes her breath. She allow you to feel, touch, see, be part of, and search through that jumble of emotions that passed through all of our days.  Church doesn’t waste time telling you the who, where, or why she is – she whispers her rage, her vulnerability, the emotional content of her every day. Reading her is as if she’s sitting in the room with you waiting to be held, waiting for you, the MIssy Church at Nomadic Press, Photo Cassandra Dallettreader, to help contain the emotional explosion of a young woman spinning in the chaotic jumble of what is.  Read her, love her.  In Church: Retrospective se give you that “more” of what poems are supposed to be.  She goes to the inside of things. And it’s beautiful.  Did I mention, Church and her work are easy to fall in love with?  Read her and you will – too.

*photo by Cassandra Dallet

 

http://www.amazon.com/Church-Retrospective-Missy/dp/1514664194/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1449561551&sr=8-1&keywords=missy+church

Two Poems by John Dorsey

Posted in John Dorsey with tags on December 7, 2015 by Scot

A Fistful of Pie

it was halloween
in old city
as david and i drunkenly skimmed pebbles
across the cobblestone
and looked up to see
a group of middle aged men
waving at us to join the party

being young and stupid
we waited to be buzzed in
and climbed the stairs
toward experience

the owner of the building
was an architect twice my age
who offered me a drink
he said it was his job
to build character
brick by brick
in the hearts
of young men like me

as i looked over at david
he was getting uncomfortably felt up
by a lawyer dressed as a sugar plum fairy
when the single solitary woman there
approached me by the punchbowl
and told me we’d better get going
if we wanted ro remain untouched by time

i placed a bottle of scotch and a pecan pie
in each of my trenchcoat pockets
and motiioned for david
to follow me down the stairs
toward our dorm room
running from the possibilities
of nameless men

a while later
i reached into my pockets
for my keys
forgetting all about the pie
crushed to gooey bits
of crust and baking shrapnel
now covering my fists

looking up at the sky
i thought about how
we’re all dying stars
trying to build character
while searching for beauty
before quietly burning out
in the moonlight.

____________

 

Singh’s Song

singh had been called a hindu
an arab
a towelhead
a terrorist
decades before the twin towers
ever quivered
and collasped
onto the pavement
and into the pages
of history

he had been born
in the streets
of fresno
driving a cab
almost before he could walk

a sikh
he followed a guru
to center city philadelphia
in search of true human equality

while the rest of the world
followed ronald reagan
through death valley days
and beyond

he would walk into dirty frank’s
on the corner of pine st.
and start singing
after a single beer
as the patrons groaned
and threatened to fight him
on the sidewalk outside
at three in the afternoon
he would plead
with the bartender
to just let him stay
for one more song
on the jukebox

and somehow sarah
came out cheryl i love you
after someone had left
a weathered cheryl teigs calendar
on the backseat of his jitney in 1987
as his face filled with tears
because he knew
equally was too much
to ask for on a sunny day
in a world
where happy hour
rarely comes
for anyone.

 

“I stand upon my desk to remind myself that we must constantly look at things in a different way–Dead Poets Society” …Hugh Fox, Todd Moore, FN Wright, Joie Cook, Harry Calhoun, Scott Wannberg, Doug Draime.

Posted in dead poets with tags on December 3, 2015 by Scot
______
Todd Moore
October 30, 2009 @Deuce Coupe
peckinpah took
ben johnson
aside while
filming the
battle of
bloody porch
in the wild
bunch & sd
you looked
good in
that last
shot but it
wasn’t in
tense enough
what the
hell are you
talking abt
johnson
replied i
broke my
finger wor
king that
goddam
machine
gun i don’t
give a fuck
if you broke
yr dick
make it
look like
you are
falling in
love w/that
browning
because it’s
going to
be yr angel
of death
___________
Night calling by Harry Calhoun
September 28, 2010–Deuce CoupeTrain horn wrapping gently around the ears,
moody, yearning and dark, crowding softly
over the eyes and passing through the nostrils
past the borders of simple awareness,
as if it has become part of the soul,
a soul filled with soft midnight sound,
and the clack of the train behind it
the last sweet knock of sentience
between now and our blessed sleep.

__________

Channeling Norman Mailer by Doug Draime
July 10, 2009–Deuce CoupeAfter the cops tracked
him down in
Bogota, he confessed
on the plane ride
back to the U.S.
to stabbing his wife
to death with a
steak knife, but there
was sort of a disclaimer
attached. He swore he
was channeling
Norman Mailer, but
that he couldn’t
stop himself
at just one stab,
like Mailer did
But, he said, it was
a gruesome, bloody mess,
and that he wished
he’d be able to
channel
William Burroughs,
instead. And he would’ve
just shot her
in the head.

__________

 

F. N. Wright, February 23, 2011 @Deuce Coupe

JOHNNY

one of my best
friends
from diapers
to levis
both of us being
scouted by major
league scouts

me a hard throwing lefty
with a nasty curveball
& johnny who had all
the five tools they
look for
especially speed

fastest mother fucker
I ever saw

small town politics
got me kicked off
the american legion
baseball team
just before our junior
year of high school

I forced my mother’s hand
& made her sign the papers
so I could enlist in the marines
on my seventeenth birthday

when johnny graduated
from high school he had
a baseball scholarship offer
from a major university
& a decent bonus to sign
with the cardinals

I was in nam when I received
his letter asking what I thought
he should do & first chance I had
I wrote & urged him to go to college
or he could get his ass drafted
before he ever saw busch stadium

stupid fucker did what I would’ve done
& signed with the cardinals &
had moved up to triple a ball

when he was drafted & I was
in nam for my second tour

I was back in Tennessee
when johnny came home
but he wasn’t marching

he couldn’t because he’d lost
both legs to a mine in nam

& I’d left most of my sanity
over there but hid it well

when we first met at a bar for beers
I said, “what are you going to
do now? you sure as hell ain’t
playin’ anymore baseball, you
stupid asshole.”

He laughed & said, “I’m learning
to run the bases on my hands.”

he killed himself opening day
of the following season.

____________

Black Lung Hallelujah by Scott Wannberg
July 26, 2009 @Rusty Truck

Dig deep inside the hurt Earth
and when China finds you
tell all its people
you know a great place for them
to all stay.
The wars claim they are going in for the night
but for them the night never really rides up.
the night got pulled over for speeding
and the magician can’t find any rabbits in town
that will allow him to
pull them out of anything.

July 16 2009

__

Oh Susanna
Johnstown

____________

To a King of Sorts by Joie Cook
August 18, 2009

All of the women
Who have opened your heart with their wounds
Call to you now
From the last row of the dark cinema

Kelly with her enormous breasts
Chelsea with her thin, swaggering hips
Marlena, the poet, the one you loved best,
Who will suffer the most when you die

All the women of your magnum opus
Some call pornography
You imagine them breathing softly
As you sleep with your wife
Hear their sighs
As you retire into middle age – a sexless marriage
A mortgage and children you never see

They were so beautiful then
Your naked dreamers
Forever preserved
The women, who return again and again
A gift to the aching now of your fevered past:

Celluloid flesh reminders of your lost empire.

Joie Cook
San Francisco

____________

LAST LEAVES by Hugh Fox
April 11, 2010 @Rusty Truck

Why does the collection of my dead always come back now,
some places still a glorious blend of yellows and reds, others j
just black trunks and empty limbs in the last November rain, just on
the edge of snow?
“Howya doin’, Hughie?”
Bespeckled, swollen-legged, practical black-shoed Gram, or
mon mere, “Will you please pass the sugar,” making
it sound like “Fire!,” mon pere, Mr. Double-Belly,sucking
on a cigarette or (special occasions) cigar, turkey all over
the tables in my brain, and trees going up, wreathes, Bless
me, Father, for I have, God rest you merry gentlemen…wanting
Mary Joan and Shirley and Guiliana and Patricia and Dolores
and Shirley all back,Lynn coming in the midnight door to
spend the night in my high-heaven hallucinogenic dreams,
the Chicago-LA-NYC-Boston-Paris-BC streets

Two poems by Michele McDannold

Posted in Michele McDannold with tags on December 2, 2015 by Scot

at the tee gee club

bob wants to hear metal

we fumble the
quarter
and change the language
to Spanish but
eventually he
gets it
three songs later
Planet Claire
Elvis Costello
and that one prince song
all the while his fifth wife
and a trip to the phillipines

he gets his quarter
time for a smoke
because today the news

and knowing it’s coming all along
doesn’t grease the wheels for
Soundgarden
doesn’t temper the pain for
Metallica even, old school

iris will watch my drink for me
top it off so i can
say i’m happy
so i can slip and say
i might not be ok

but you know i’ll be fine

____________

west coast notebook entry #2
(if your progress needs a mountain, go)

 

it’s very complicated.

possible i might
not come down
from this
highway crest
in the clouds
here comes the rain, just
a sprinkle
one could feel cold
except the sun-direct
patches of light

you know what it
reminds me of?
as does everything
right now…
when i leave this
mountain
will i leave the memory
of you
here too?

tell me how

Two poems by John Sweet

Posted in John Sweet with tags on December 2, 2015 by Scot

 

the poet w/out hands, w/out a tongue

sat there wanting to
write something
sat there thinking about
all of the things i’d said to you
and all of the things i’d
kept to myself
knew the priests would
end up devouring the children

knew the idea of democracy
was just one more weapon
for the rich to beat the
poor with
had a song going through
my mind but i
couldn’t remember the words
was watching it snow
outside an upstairs window
listened to the sounds the
animals made as they starved
to death by slow degrees

____________

portrait

says he’s tired of being poor
says he’s tired of letting the
dogs fuck his wife blind

is sick of christ screaming on
the bathroom floor, and
he tells me it’s time to move on
tells me columbine is
ancient history
says no one gives a shit about
andrea yates anymore
the fields are black with the
blood of the
unloved and the unwanted
the malls are all built on
the corpses of indians
we’ve come too far to let
our failures
stand in the way of progress

Where Have The Outlaws Gone by Michael Grover

Posted in Michael Grover with tags on December 2, 2015 by Scot

(An eulogy for Doug Draime)

These modern outlaws
They run in packs of followers
They walk a hipster walk
Talk in smooth hipster code
Don’t need anything new
You’ve got the same old shit to stand on
Don’t need to say anything
When walking on eggshells not to offend
Don’t need fresh energy
Don’t need anything when it all means no thing

Meanwhile way out west
An old Wordslinger
Puts down his last Poem
He was humble & kind
He was crazy from genius & capitalism
He just let his words do the talking
& a tree fell in the forest
I heard it, I know people heard

I am sitting here getting older
Watching all of my friends die
I might be watching myself die
I have seen the best minds of my generation
Rotting in trailer parks
What have we done to ourselves
I have seen too much

I heard it over the outlaw chatter
They wonder if their deaths will be publicized
Terrified that few people will notice
Or even care

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