A fist is capricious; the heart: more so.
Show me what's inside of you & how you can live without it.
Here; the ground below each tree: it secrets a prison of roots.
In my own veins (even after so many times) I faint
whenever a hand draws the blood.
Let it be your hand: take this pen, this pin;
make me swoon & do it soon (I cannot cannot cannot wait).
The heart beats; pushes.
All living is violence.
Above and below, a dusting of dusk deepens the stars-- to
this purple & this soft, i ask: deliver me into the sadnesses of the worlds.
look up, the stars are moving
away from you. the earthshined
moon, too. injured men float on
beds. they try to stay silent
but they breathe & their breath sounds
drowned, washed up on the shores
of their lips. gibbous under
the machine light. i curl. people
don't visit but i forget
not to talk. our heartbeats
distilled to a thin, constant,
pinging. no one's coming.
when i died, the stars were close.
but i'm back, & now they're gone.
A face hewn from the sky.
The stars twinkle like a dead man's eyes.
A shard of light lays
on the floor, jagging from beneath the door.
Some have fire, or brightness hidden inside of them-- secret galaxies
inside tummies; bones milky with night.
A room filled with light is as full
as one filled without.
The sky grows barren.
I notice the body, my body, for the first time, as a
as a child; a man explained to me
that the body was nothing but inter-
secting vertices all wrapped in skin,
holding a hollow within: a wire-framed coop
to protect the chicken Dickinson once
called soul. & all that was inside anyone was
wind & spirit & whatever else passed
through it. maybe this is why everything
feels whole & lonely. i believed him, then.
now, i've learned that there are bones i cannot
see (not easily): but i trust that there is
a skeleton inside of me & that it
is always smiling. myself? i'd have been
happier to've been the wind, passing through.
Ghosts or haints.
A haunt is another word for a face;
scary to see so many floating through the world.
Alive & dead & asleep, bodies ache to press against
The ghosts want this too, but they can't keep up; there are too many;
they bump into each other-- no matter how much they try, they can't find a
way to forget themselves.
Do you know what it's like for your ghosts to tire of you?
Alone with her, he pretends to be the ghost of someone she once loved;
next: she plays at haunting him.
They take turns; they call this love.
Each home is a maze; each waits for one person to
chase another through it.
there are places where you mention your injuries,
i've heard, & they will be healed. but not here.
here, make a secret of your sickness. if someone asks
about your health, they aren't asking
b/c they can help. old men & robes & rest
in inns won't cure anything. in bed he asks,
after looking in your medicine cabinet,
what's wrong with you & you explain the days
where you'd crawl around your house b/c you couldn't
walk. how difficult it still is to go anywhere, especially
out. the melody of bearable pains is strange
until it's the only song you know. be me:
be dumb, & think, maybe, he'll understand.
then, him: ... ... , ...-- are you contagious?
She falls in love with a blank.
He has no eyes; hers are blue.
He has no lips; hers are red.
She wears a mole, a ribbon: all body and mouth.
The dead follow them.
Children following a circle of breadcrumbs.
An entrance becomes an exit: a tunnel pitched out of the body.
All paths lead back, back, retracing the same paths.
you can use a face to bring yourself back
to life. you can throw a knife & it will
fly forever, parallel to the sharp
razor of the horizon. you can kill
a man & his body will vanish. you
can attack a wall & reveal a whole
roasted turkey. & if you eat it, you will
recover from your (invisible) wounds.
you can go to your job, go to your home;
you can screw or drink or collect money;
you can have children & watch them leave or
die or stay. you can drive out to the beach
& back, crying, (& salt stains on your lips).
how can you find all of this to be fun?
Children fall from the sky, abandoned by the birds.
Earless and armless, smiling (liplessly), they keep falling.
Every child is male and small and they stare at their parents and their
parents stare right back.
Their name is a rank, a title: not even a name.
Sons keeps dropping.
There's a moment when every parent considers eating
their children; either out of love or loneliness or both.
Not one of them ever meets his brother.
Above, a continual line of white birds disappear into the
black of the horizon.
you rarely hear your own voice & when you do,
your thoughts aren't your own. strangers
repeat themselves; out of words, they nod,
punctuate the silence ... ... ...!
but what do you have to say that's so important
anyway? you call your mother; don't tell her
about your lovers, feelings, failures b/c
she has her own to hide. our dramatic routines.
have you noticed your own dull loop yet?
you take the bus to work. it takes you home.
weather changes. the same faces appear
on different bodies. close to the familiar. the villagers
repeat what they hear & you talk to them, repeating
the same dialogue with each new person you meet.
I say “my favorite thing about ghosts are the taste.”
I say “every piñata is filled with spiders that turn, immaculately, into candy as
soon as they're touched by light.”
I say “the dead displace the ground, each moment we get closer to touching
I say “before you can play pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey, you'll have to rip the
tail off of a horse.”
I say “until you open it, you can't know the difference between what's in a
present and what's in a grave.”
I say “when you close your eyes, you disappear; if you didn't already know
this, it meant that no one cared.”
I say “the difference between telling a lie and telling a truth amounts to what
you believe, regardless of the facts.”
I say “everyone deserves to be loved.”
is empty. which you should've known. but why, & why
fill it? you open an unknown door & find the room
where you touched a boy's face & he punched yours.
open another & there's the abandoned factory office
where you lived when you were fifteen-- where you
drank & slept & laminated a photograph
of a handsome dead boy in packing tape & didn't
speak to anyone for months. where you first felt
safe. & now all rooms look the same. you go home
& find the emptiness behind the furniture. outside:
the blankness behind each crowd. even when
you kiss a man, you only notice the hollow he's hidden
in his mouth. you find yourself-- but the only promise
is the ground; a promise you can ful & fill.
Turn around until you're facing the ground: open it.
Behind you are the
ruins of the sky & between you & another sky is the ground.
If you could
see the future you'd run towards memory.
No one can see the future
clearly; the past & the present too, as if it mattered.
But still, there are
You will die.
This will all continue, with or without you.
The sky forgets everyone;
love it anyway.
through the kitchen light of alleys, all akimbo,
i go (slowly). strangers leave their windows
open, their doors unbolted, all for me,
so i can take baths with oil pearls & smell
like the gardens at the bottom of the
sea. in their beds, i use their pillows &
dream that i'll dream the same dreams that they dreamed
the night before. i wear their shirts, their dresses
& try to forget that all of my friends
are dead. their hearts unlocked; the relentless
earth ransacking the corners of their bodies,
then taking everything for itself. my only home
is in people. every unlocked door
is yours to enter. nowhere's safe to stay.
Boys over-ripen as the summer deepens.
A dusting of dusk hangs in the stars-- mostly purplish and softing into the
canopies of the oaks.
Planes trouble the evening; drones moreso.
Satellites collect the tailings of the afternoon; shine for a wish's minute, then
Night: proof that everything moves away from everything else.
You have to cross an infinity of halves before you even can hold someone
Your love song flatlines in the air.
(Bombs whistle along.)
if you know how to love then you know what
it means to hurt. passion is even worse
(pati, its root, means: suffer). & hate is
the word we use when we don't understand
someone else's loves. why such a need for
finality? what is done cannot be
undone, sure, but there's always more to do
(which you probably already knew). so.
go have another first date. another
heartbreak. there are people who make a game
of romance without ever knowing anyone.
but you've done this before & you know
what's next. when will you learn (as good as you're
getting): there's nothing to win.
All of time and space and the space outside of space where does it end takes its title from Fez
Beware, I live, I hunger takes its title from Sinistar
The Chase, They Meet, and Junior takes their titles from Ms. Pacman
The phrase “Get over here” is taken from Mortal Kombat
Please choose two other kids takes its title from Maniac Mansion
Rend the feelings the heart with painful feelings takes its title from Rambo (NES game)
Watch out, the heart attacks takes its title from Castlevania 2: Simon's Quest
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