setting sail

in the middle of the night sunday
i wake up and turn in
bed to hold you

it’s just a pillow
and i am alone

that morning my heart
a kissy face emoji goes out
our first red heart

it is the conversation 
we can’t get enough of
sweet eye meets
gizzard grins
the touch

that morning my heart
sent a kissy face emoji
blew our first red heart

monday morning
no work on my mind
and instead i write you a purple poem
slide it in a bottle
and push it down the river Styx
for you to gather on
at the battery docks on
Manna-hata’s tip

you uncork that sunset’s sour vintage
where the taste is not
what the wine is not
what the sweet translucent flesh of grapes
had dripped - stickying our fingers
at day’s demise

for one day you did not reply

in bed i hear the whine of the mosquito
i know it will be a long night
still you have not replied
my phone buzzes
an associate, a friend

she bit me on the shoulder
she bit me on the face

that morning i wake up late
from a bunk bed dream
where the bay waters
had risen
and you can’t see the city from Oakland anymore

the mosquito is trapped:
buzzing around in a cup
with a cloth over it
beside my bed
and a butt full of my blood

i take her outside
on the fire escape
lift the cloth
and watch her 
erratic flight among brick and iron


later, you reply
it seems callous to me
three heart emojis
none of them red
and a chesnut

but as my tears clear
I see the fire peach and navy
the purple
and the olive pit

back from the void

we enjoy a purple embrace
sun falls into hoboken
exploding silently
slow oranges
rippling against the hudson
an endless breathing dance
of fire peach and navy
fills our head kiss
summer eyes.
the olive pit you toss in the water
is the sand pattern slipping
through your fingers.
it sinks to
the seafloor
one dark seed under the hudson
joins ten million other human sins.
hellish fractal infinities
once danced on your palm in
these specks of sea-dust
blown from a distant star.
I will take you to
the purple planet
whose ocean island
laps at the banks of
your dream beach
where every grain of sand
was born between your hourglass fingers
and lychees dangle 
from the low grove.


she texts furiously
curl to the tip of her nose
face in profile
brown straight hair
black romper
seated on a hotel
lobby bench
rolly bag with the handle up
cardigan draped 
around the top
rings, long manicure
she looks

perl H buck

(as in jesus H. christ)
straight off a false awakening
in my childhood bedroom
trying to get the lights on
the lights won't go on
flipping switch
want the lights on.

I am in the drop.
the drop happens after
a sinewy Kubrick sequence.
watching the Kubrick sequence
with Perl
one of two women
the other climbs in
nice when it was just perle

it is a person putting on a glove
while sinewy violins almost
nearly unbearable screech
proud: I know who this is
this is Kubrick

when the scene ends
the bottom falls out
until the moment
the ego rea
(is realized)

"oh, I do still exist"

pieces start to
a self, a scene
I don't know is Perl still here?
still feel her presence
in the backseat of a taxi
needle and thread
still stitching that glove finger as
silk tailored
pale pink gloss
slips on as
about to "the electric chair"
a criminal
the bottom falls out
the b





awake full mast sails          needing to write
plump with darkness.        dreading the void.


Denver is haunted there,
thin air thick with spirits
blink of sleep joins
you the dead fiesta,
these horny ghosts
pass one another in 
useless wispy rapture
in the airport
scampering amid
redeye flier's dreams
passed out back hall
splotchy carpet
under the wild red gaze
of the throbbing blue stallion,
or frozen in the crosswalks
of Aurora they appear
in the weary driver's 
blink of sleep:
a mother and child
stepping out in the street.

Denver is haunted there
ghosts eddying in the
alpine mist.


when i was twenty nine
i learned i could go out at night
and bring home poems
instead of women:
at the street corner
where giggling groups pass,
in the residue between
the bricks,
taxi wheels as
grind to a halt,
weird fizz you can't get 
bottom of a strong porter
stuck to the side,
slouched over a bar
head thump
bench seat
feet hang off the curb
strong porter
when i was twenty nine

and bring home poems

El Cortez

walking around this weird neighborhood
is it dawn or twilight
the hours don’t match up
an orb in the sky could be
a pin prick sun
or just a globe streetlamp
all blueish black above 
a crackle of orange through
the mist on the horizon.

the bulwark of your mechanics 
hedge-pledge comes 
tumbling out of your uber driver's knife carrot harem pocket, 
the old fancy way. 


across the thames

“You want to eat you go to Chicken Cottage”

The man outside barks. It’s cash only, and an attempt is made to beg Brits for a couple pounds.

Luckily there's another, quieter Chicken Cottage, with nobody in it, and this one accepts cards. The fries taste like old grease. The nuggets are the nuggest - held delicately between thumb and fore. 

“Let’s find somewhere we can sit outside and eat this.”

The park entrance is at the dead end of a lane in South London. 

Tip the water bottle for a swig, pinky stuck in the air.

“We’re in London.”

A smile.

“Can I put my arm around you?”

The flat smells like moth balls. The second thing is the furniture - tasteful and warm. A large window covered by thick venetian slats. Beside it, the olive green chair: a curved danish number, elegant in its size, and with four polished wooden legs in a splay. It is overhung by a two-orb cantilever lamp in rosy metallic.

The ceiling fixture is an open ended cylinder: aurburn in extérieur, reflective copper within. A single Edison bulb within emits a scientific orange glow.

Four eyes examine the dresser - rich wood bisected artistically by veins of inlayed brass, whose thoughtful arrangement is uninterrupted by the breaks between drawers. 

The bedspread is a warm white decorated lightly by black embroidery - a band of lace forming a square that speaks of nuzzley sweet interiority. 

Two cross-legged people face one another. 

“What would that look like?”

A smile.

“That would be nice.”

A morning glance between the venetians affords vistas of lush spring foliage and a futuristic peek of London’s iconic “Shard” as cobalt surrenders to dayblue.

I Love Mi

Mi is a woman in my dream.
she has a rainbow
a small nose
and an electric smile.

I meet Mi
through a mutual friend
    who is also cute
but Mi glows

she’s talking to a woman
with green eyes
behind the bar.

this café is so

the green eyed woman,
olive skinned,
dark gold curls
pulled back,
looks at me.

she tells Mi
“he is cute.”
and they giggle.

when Mi comes back
to my side of the bar
it is to speak to
another guy
who also likes Mi:
everyone likes Mi.

Mi has a rainbow face
a small nose
and an electric smile.

the other guy
starts to ask Mi
“do you want to leave together?”
I catch her eyes
as he asks
and interject.

“Mi, how about, if
instead of that,
we go hang out.”

she says ok,
meet at her place.

the other guy is mad
in fact he curses Mi
he calls her
“a woman who
meets men at bars.”

I tell him not to talk
that way about Mi
and show
him my sword:
long and sharp,
it remains in its black sheath.

he quickly draws his
serrated blade
pressing it
into my flesh.

I will not do battle.
I take the pain,
blood dripping

I set out to find Mi.

on the muddy path
to her house
there is a pyramid.
I stop
realizing what great
works I must build.

when I finally arrive
it is on horseback
Mi is behind
the desk in my
grandfather’s study.

I open my shirt to 
show her
the wound.

Mi stands.
she is bouyant
she greets me 
with kaleidoscope sweetness,
a megawatt grin.
exactly the way
I want her.

a friend says
“you need to
find someone who
    is a nurse
someone who will 
‘oh my god, what
when they see the blood.”

that was
the last time I saw Mi:
standing behind 
the desk
rainbow faced,
small nosed,


shaded sunny dapple
outskirt eco-home
wife is accomplished
brown locks
she stands magnificent
next to the blood orange tree
we planted
a baby
and named him Ausphur
after his father’s mad
and momma’s 
good luck.

when Fiona’s
big twinkle meets my ogle 
it is to ask
“do you think this is bad?”
gesturing to a
patch of discoloration
on the shrubby 
citrus trunk.

kitchen fixtures 
achieve an earthy stainless appeal
interior featured in “Home”
published in house
on our
maxMac 2i
ethnic decor
punctuating rich hardwood walls:
masks and fabrics are portals
to times we roamed
ourselves weary
finally we can
into the danish
needle on a vinyl electro-chill
ripe avocado
heirloom tomatoes
a piece of sustainable trout
home filling with
warm light + auto-chef aroma
our purple sky front vista
navies down to night.

Ausphur is building
unbuilding and
rebuilding his legos in the guest yurt
saving his screen time
for 8pm
his friends will log on
and Fiona and I will
hold hands
lock eyes
across the
reclaim cherry


Fiona fills her diaphragm,
corner smiling at
my helpless love-look
she tries to start
desperate eyes
that half smile,
my pause palm
moves to her clavicle
“It’s ok Fiona, I know.”