Archive for the M.P. Powers Category

Bonfire in the Canefields by M.P. Powers

Posted in M.P. Powers with tags on November 2, 2010 by Scot

When I woke up that morning, there was blood.
In the toilet, on the walls.
I felt like I’d been beaten with a catfish
pole. I staggered
to the washbasin, looked in the cracked
glass.

I forget what year it was,
but these were the days when The Raven
and the Dove was operating under a phony business
license,
and Alan Britt, living in a bungalow off Lucerne,
would drink Colt Ice out of a
tennis ball can. A couple blocks north, Michael Grover
operated out of a bomb shelter, where he’d harvest silk
worms and dry his
clothes by draping them over the bushes
in the lawn.

And of course
everyone knows about my lifelong affinity to
corn souffle, long legs, and Art
Schopenhauer, a fellow pessimist who threw a woman
down a flight of stairs for running
her cakehole in the hall. “Sleight-of-hand,” some wit said.
And it always
seems to come down to that. Swapping hyperbole
for fact, or a direct
look in the eye from a hound (human
or otherwise).
And whose to say
what’s truth or trash? A tale of a tub or a sunset
like a roasted horse.

Time was when Misti
Rainwater-Lites strangled a price-gouging garage
mechanic
with her pantyhose in Lickskillet, Alabama.
And William Taylor Jr., bleeding
a live chicken in the parking lot of Ross
Dress for Less.
“Sometimes I think it’s just easier
to make sense than poetry,” said Thunderclap
Endelfarb, a Jewish redneck
residing in the lower portions of
your Upper Imagination.

And then came Thalestris, Queen
of the Amazons, who didn’t think Alexander’s appearance
quite matched his reputation.
Yet the two of them spending the next 13 days
in bed together.

And I felt a little blood
thumping behind my ear, noted the ghost
in the mirror.
“Art is what you can get
away with.” (Warhol, 1967). Whereupon,
it had come to my attention
some 33 Cubans landed
in the cooling canals of the Turkey Point nuclear power plant
a little after dawn, Thanksgiving
Day (2009).
And quite conveniently, no one ever mentioned Howie
Good’s penchant for opening umbrellas in the back
seat of his Grand
Marquis.

Or when the red
moon drifted over the ash trees. 3 Englishmen
with bad haircuts sashaying through a Rotterdam pastry
shop, the fat one
making threats with the wax
pistol shoved in his pants
until Pris Campbell clubbed him over the head with a Rube
Goldberg-style cheesegrater.

“You know me, blow me,” said Paul Corman-Roberts.
We had been working
on an historical novel entitled Getting Your Rocks
Off: The Importance of
Prophylactics while Dry
Humping, when reports came over the radio that a madman
in hospital gown
was on the loose in the neighborhood.

I opened the medicine cabinet,
took the floss, strung it from one end of the room
to the other. Then I threw
a towel on the floor of the shower, doused it
with scalding hot water and wrapped
it around my head. I came out of there smelling
like lilacs, and the next thing I know
I’m with RD
Armstrong and three stewbums, dragging a shopping cart
through Liberty City.

We had decorated it with blue
traffic reflectors and tied a Christmas tree to the side,
and a ragdoll on the front. And Raindog standing up
in it, dressed like
Don Quixote, waving the short sword
he’d pulled from his sash, threatening
yield signs
as if they were giants.

It wasn’t long after that
we made a hoist down at Bank of Miami, (Mike Meraz
disguising
himself as Grover Cleveland),
and ended up in a canefield on the edge of the glades.
The sun
had just gone down, and we spread all the money
around
on the ground.

Then we lit it up in flames, and as we watched
it burn “all
Halloween orange and chimney red,” one of the stewbums
said to me,
he said, “That’s right, kid.
It ain’t ’bout duh money. Nevuh wuz… Dat’s duh whole
secret ta da ting. Ain’t life
grand…..”

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Nightmusic by MP Powers

Posted in M.P. Powers with tags , on June 2, 2010 by Scot

On a dingy corner across from the Moulin Rouge, this little beautiful madam takes my hand and draws me into the sadistic darkness of her strange ambrosial cave. S’asseoir.” I sit down on a fat sofa. “Something to drink, monsieur?” “Heineken, please…” Smoke tingles in a soft blaze of soiled lights, walls aquiver. A big, buxom African whore in clinging semitransparent lingerie moves under the chanting red globes. Something  begins to diminish. The decomposing dribble of a moment jiggles via the infallible hands of timelessness, perhaps?

Here, the dead have dressed up in their oral traditions, god plays grim his violin, light fails, and the prostitutes hit the floor, shoving precisely though the pushandpull of orchestral despair, their bounding feet transfigured on a steep current of swollen logic. It sits at the end of some foreign tongue, volumes of dirty eroticism slowly expanding until the keen queen-of-all-kings coyly emerges. She hurls a handful of lilacs on the floor, spits, and as she begins pouncing on them with her happy jouncing feet, I observe the glad awful screaming of her profane flesh; the sweaty waves of palpitating flab among whose largeness even oblivion would be feign to blush. My beer arrives, green and glowing. It’s handed to me by some Turkish pimp of the dime-a-dozen kind, donned in large white collars and a black bullying blazer stuffed with shoulders, his gold tooth and earrings emitting sharp glints from the hellish neon, his face a dull retching of perfect
evil, like a serpent, or a toadstool. His loafer slightly pronounces itself, he pirouettes, one arm does a fat sweeping gesture, and the big African whore descends upon me, pink drink in hand. The pimp nods, nods again. “For the lady,” he says. “Merci…” she says. “On me?” I ask.

But he’s gone.

A cloud of silence covers her face. Immense, beautiful, perfectly insipid. She takes a sip from the straw. Two hungry thighs squirm before me and she unleashes her top. She cups the roundness of her heaving breasts and gives them a good upward squeeze, lets go. Plunk. Then her fingers find my thighs and I feel like all the others, hooked in the gill, waiting to be dragged along the wake and then eaten. The room spins its fuzzy red syllables. A purple curtain parts. A man in a cape begins to sob. Or sing. Or something. And I am the man in the cape. I have no home. Just this perverse little cave of a room, in my soul, or across from the Moulin Rouge, where a purple curtain closes, and gods play grim their violins.

Burn and Turn by M.P. Powers

Posted in M.P. Powers with tags on April 2, 2010 by Scot

my dad stinks like money
not because he has any
he’s been underwater
since the mid 80s

spent the early 90s in a cell
ran four successive businesses
into the dirt, and let me tell
you, there’s no salvation in fried
chicken S & L’s beepers
patiofurniture

not even my credit
cards – the ones
even I didn’t know he’d
pillaged – could save him

sixtyeight years old,
collars armpits pantlegs
mind stinking of it;
even his farts remind me of cash
that disgraceful
game he’s never grown
tired of

every weekend slipping
on his rolex and gold band
to make the people think things
that are not true
making his way down to the isles
casino

for another chance
and the little bit he has left –
poor dad,
holding out and holding on
to a frayed piece of dangling
thread

his dignity

Balance by MP Powers

Posted in M.P. Powers with tags on December 8, 2009 by Scot

so much of life is just
the heaviness
of your own humanity slogging
through the light

the dull and agonizing moments
getting out of bed
in the morning

backaches jointaches ingrown
toenails anxiety
constipation

so much of life is just
trying to survive yourself

getting through the latest crisis

an unforgettable tragedy
memories
even the happiest ones
are finally sad

waiting for a letter to arrive
you know will never
come

ennui ennui

and all the menial tasks that rule

a load of dirty laundry
heaped
upon the soul

the heaviness of your own humanity
dragging itself
along

expecting nothing less
than a miracle
to come your way

(when death is the only
miracle)

so much of life
is laughter and the small occasional
victory

a blue flash
of epiphany in the brain

art, love
when it’s not too
painful

all these strange and wondrous inventions
that help us
forget

all those other ones

view from a barroom in amsterdam by M.P. Powers

Posted in M.P. Powers with tags on November 24, 2009 by Scot

There’s a sex theater next door
with little flickering lights around
the windows and a bouncer
pacing out front. In the alleyway,
just a little further down, I can see
them –  two glass doors, one
with a thick red curtain
drawn. In the other, a beautiful
woman straddling a chair.
She’s smoking a cigarette, skillfully
dazzling the droll beasts
of the evening, who move past
with their umbrellas. Englishmen,
Turks, Americans, the lonely,
the debauched. I watch them all
go by from this table by the
window, as the church bells toll
in the tower at the foot
of the street; they toll out of sadness,
anger, remorse. They toll
and they keep tolling when
suddenly the curtain pulls back
and a man creeps through
the door. He lowers his head and scurries
off into the rainy evening.
A few minutes later, she appears
in his place. Barely legal, blond,
svelte; she touches her velvety
thighs belly lips sticks her fingers
in her mouth and somehow
you are led to believe
her next
will also be her first.