teenage poetry

stacks of teenage poetry erupt into flame
leaping through the air i grasp at
shards of paper with still legible fragments
feed them back into the blaze
the world will never know them twice
this is my fantasy
in truth:
they sit in stacks of composition journals
dusty in my closet under yearbooks of that era
in a pile of shirts aimed for donation boxes
it is a secret heap of shame
i blush at my adolescent grandiosity
knowing it is still present but better-guised
i think of rifling through the sheaths of paper
scouring for useable bits
seeds for better works
it never makes my to-do list
should i perish tomorrow
it will be like dying in ugly underwear

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False Key

thanks to falling in with a fantastic group of authors/collaborators/friends, i am now a published author.  my name’s actually on the cover of this book; how did that happen?
Howl at the Moon Writers Jam, in Stuart, Florida.

a local nexus for serendipitous authorship
meets the third Thurs. every month at:
Stuart Coffee Co.
55 Flagler Ave
Stuart, FL 34990

my contribution of a single illustration and several short poems is minimal in contrast with the wonderful and weird world these authors have crafted with their stories and poetry.

future False Key projects are in the works…
more shall be revealed.
unless you get eaten by a sea creature.


the book is freakin’ awesome and is available on amazon and here at our official website: FalseKey.com

please purchase, peruse and enjoy.
thanks for your support.



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Human Incandescence

How long a wait for the
filament to bite it, the
tick: the moment to

believe it will be painless:
the smell of burning cloth from far away,
a trail of ash from an invisible wick.

And then
hanging in the air
Like a buttery salve,
temple incense
gently pooling in the nostrils of the

The bulb is dull and black.

To be alive is to be in flames-
Is that true?

A visceral if irrational reality.

Feel it like a bulb in the wrong socket.
Heat that’s light restricted.
It can’t tell you how it feels to burn.

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Of a certain type

Seeing your face
can cause me to hate my father
and in turn blame him
for how I wanted you
left waiting beyond all yearning for closure
in the infuriating silence of the phone
it was the same, again
I had to learn
that some things simply must be taken
And I will take… and shall be repaid
I will wear an hourglass on a chain around my neck
as a reminder of what is mine.
Say what you want and think what you will despite all.
You say I can’t hear you;
I say you can’t see.
My candor will grow to menace you
A red bloom, it will open and overtake.
As for the past… call it a crucible.
Or you can call it a damn hard year
but I have learned
how to take.

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Writing to be rid of it, a pyre of paper:
sacrificial vessel of words.
Ease them to the flame.
Torn edges light quickly
the weight of the past, wax dripping
the binds of memory, smoky spirals fading
Sweep the past into the fire
The cold stare in the coffee shop: gone.
Misplaced contempt for bus driver: emolliated
along with failed math tests
uncomfortable cafeteria meals
Take it- the early childhood fears
how I ran from the darkness in the hallway
how I almost drowned in the pool
drunk, still holding my cigarette aloft.
I couldn’t ever drown any memories
they surfaced from the sand far too early in the morning
spewing watery venom and the smell of low tide
I shed them as tears and they came back
through my skin to swim again in my ocean
I spoke them and had them spoken back to me
A lit candle is a small thing
but fire is fire and what it does is burn
Burn, word by word, slip away
The darker space beyond the penumbra
rife with the ghosts of unwanted nouns and verbs,
my hands glow weakly, lighter, thinner,
clearer and redder, the veins below my skin.
Cleanse me of my story.
Capillaries etch out hieroglyphs
I read them backward from the inside
like a note taped to a window
Will I soon be gone from here-
a bereft parchment shell, a kite of paper?
Words stream from my fingertips,
I read them finally as they hiss into the flame.
It sputters, flickers and sways
What are we but our stories as they shape us?
Take it- what is left but smoke rising gently into nothing
and inert wax slowly seizing
as the flame of the era sputters and sways?
(Smoke and ash and shapeless wax…)

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one yoga poem

sitting beside you on the train
i struggled with all i had learned
about light
trying to fill my body with light
and pierce through the grey shade
of the afternoon
of those days
stacked behind one another like rail cars
doubting days
i stared out the window and remembered
i once seemed so lost i formed a theory
that confusion was the most natural state of man
honestly, it was in youth
before i’d fallen hard enough to learn
truly how to rise
and i’m on better footing now
to go back to my mat
and expore
the model of my life
an ocean fish tending an aquarium garden
reaching from my core and sweating
pulling up the weeds of what
no longer serves me
when i lay down on my back with open arms
it will be to welcome
the world as it always has been
the darkness of the waves at daybreak

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ode to an age

This: an ode to the post post (post?) modern age
	‘round her neck atoms threaded on satellite web
     so many silver beads in the bitstream
an ode to powerlessness unclothed by
     endless access to information
     city lights that blaze unceasing
darkness this day is of a different kind
     wet dark of oil slick
     the hungry who know there is enough food
     the hungry that already have enough
so this is an ode to the world of the web
     homogenate, priority dissolved in emergency
     no one can say is it growing or shrinking
in this age context stands in for meaning, 
     diplomacy demands relativism
     the accommodation of competing narratives
yet how - we are all starving
     for something that searching can only dilute
and still, the hungry search links us all
     aerospace and industry and blazing signs of neon
     across the colossal loom of our time
the intangible presence of the sleekly woven song
of the age
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1 2 3 Eggs

new games deserve names:
Egg Shell Jenga
and rules:
you know when it’s time to make omelets
call me up, we’ll stay the night
throw down the shells
I’ll stack the fragile wrecks just so…
later they might
by miraculous natural calculus
bear my weight
I had the right answer, but wrong calculation
so now I’m out back
swinging a stop sign at your trees
one way it slaps, one way it slices
we can do loud
we can do deep
what would it have been like living
in your goldilocks zone?
not too hot, not too cool, not too close
the kitchen floor, it’s in
sha sha shambles
the yard strewn with branches
I’ll go, I won’t leave, but I’ll
go, go deep into the wonder
and I know you can’t follow me there
where plants transpire softly
breezes breathe life into street trash
sha sha shambles
but spiracles is such a pretty name
for the breathing orifaces of leaves
and as they breathe out
123 I breathe in
while litter dances in the breeze

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Escape from Meaning

I dreamt my pen rolled under the doorway to hell
and I wondered if it meant something
There was a train…
Don’t let too many doors close behind you, I said
The clock. It is a traitor
you never know what time it is
I groped through the darkness to find my voice
leaving a toe on the bright side of the threshold

One night I saw a village of
white houses with brightly painted windows & gates
then, under a screeching-cat wind
with pockets full of mud I clutched
a massive ring of keys in my gritty hands
as it rained, the whole world was unearthed
what lies through those bright gates and sills?
what is the price of discovery?

A grown man played with stuffed toy dragons
holding them up, turning them slowly, looking…
the magical idea examined in depth
the question of veracity lain aside
sometimes I was him, sometimes I watched him

The hourglass is slipping sands
Mitosis is running amok
while fireflies flash in the wood
while hunger turns me to a wild dog
while teeth crumble to pebbles
You never know what time it is

I’ve decided what most of this means
I’m pretty sure the cat wanted out of the box
Just as I’d like to flee but stumble instead
from one form of meaning to another
Maybe treading lightly will
prevent the web from sticking
if we’re clever enough for social commentary
covertly interjectedfor the ears of our kin

I could paint something whimsical
A portrait series of myself mounted on winged insects
A rosy maple moth, an emerald damsel fly
Only to unearth in foreign eyes
further meaning of more serious nature
My relative smallness either a mark of self-perception
or a statement on the nature of mankind

Thanks to Jung, thanks to Dali
dream dictionaries, modern minds scrying
dreaming in deepening spirals
mining, unearthing quantum gems
of meaning that never existed prior to discovery…
then they become so real, more real than the tangible
post-post-post-modern meta

the creative act modifies the subject-object relationship
through intent
And the perception of the product is modified
by the history of the observer
there is no escape from the subjectivity of meaning

So, I will paint an erotic series
of men eating ice cream cones
and women brushing their teeth
It will be erotic because I’ve made my intention known
So that it will be part of your history when you see it

But most meaning has nothing to do with anything real
Realize what that means?
It means: none of this is fucking real
Until it is
An idea can change everything

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echoes under the bridge

On the walk below the bridge
          light and sound
                    overtake one another
By turn warmth and coolness,
          hums and rhythms
                    lines and colors
In parts and pieces 
          by moments in sequence
                    a small human sense
Of the united, unfolding
          in the song of the traffic
                    the sun’s gilded slant
In my throat, the
          acoustic presence
                    of the inlet water
The drifting peaks
          and valleys shape the
                    clouds within my ear
And my eye
          Reflects again the
                    wave-scattered sun
I walk on the cement
          as the scene moves
                    through me
I am just reflection
          here I am  
                    only an echo
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