(revised) yes, it's long. Yes, you can still read it in a few minutes time
|Played lawn darts in the living room again
Fuck. You know how hard it is to plant
Jesus feet-first into close-cropped carpeting when He’s got
all of those damn rosary beads attached to him. The cable went out.
I called my congressman to see if he’d finally broken down
and bought that jar of Grey Poupon I’ve been asking to borrow.
It rained. I told myself I was stoned so I could stop thinking
and fix my bike. It rides so smoothly
now that the tires have air in them. The handlebars only turn one way.
Doesn’t matter. Must be pretty funny, though, watching somebody
signal a left turn and make three rights instead. But you were wrong
they didn’t laugh. At least, I don’t think they did. I didn’t hear them.
Hell, maybe they laughed. I don’t know.
I had my eyes closed, trying to smell the ocean.
The glorious chlorinated petroleum vapors that wafted into my nostrils
from heaven below as we stood on cloud eight
drifting on wave after amber wave of safety-railed Holiday Inn balconies
that overlooked macadam beaches and tides of pedestrians
shouting obscenities and calling us insane for emptying the ice bucket onto their heads.
You laughed and told them it was an accident.
I laughed and asked you who Insane was.
When did we finally run into those
cassocked Jesus wannabes? I don’t remember.
But they asked you if I’d been saved, and
you shook your head and I laughed
because your nose always twitches when you lie.
I forgot the nails were there after a while.
That’s what they never understood. I don’t know why
you wouldn’t show them. They would have believed you.
But I kept my gloves on
and you left your mallet in the car.
You never loved anyone else the way you loved me.
We flew home through the fog in a lead-winged Windstar
Jesus’ carcass flopping against your sternum in a freon breeze.
Why were you wearing that thing at the dinner table
the night he read The Raven aloud between salad forks
and dessert plates? I got so distracted staring at His face
and trying to bend my knees and slump my shoulders so
my arms would point to ten and two
that I never heard you tell him that
the pen, the pen, the almighty pen
spews poison onto blotter paper that questions everything
but answers nothing and skews the truth by fortifying the ramparts
of whole-hearted imagination and somebody
painted a furious something of a rotten whore, but
I was bored, so I passed the time by writing out my will in gravy
on the table cloth. I did the best I could with the spoon in my mouth,
but you couldn’t tell what it said so you bleached it clean.
I never saw those ten-penny manacles again once you planted a foot
on my wrists and pedaled the crow bar with the other and showed me
just how loud I could scream.
I called you names as I tried my feet for the first time in decades.
Sacrilege, I suppose. You’ll have to forgive me.
I should have thanked you for stripping me of your robe and unfurling
my atrophied wings. But I had places to go, people to see, debts to pay, second-hand
tabernacles to scalp by the Troy ounce. I tried to call
but I couldn’t use my real name so you didn’t accept the charges
and I called you a cunt as I hung up the phone and I’m sorry
we haven’t talked since then.
Ah, but the bike, the bike, the mud-caked iron-crusted
manual transmission two-and-a-half speed mountain bike.
That’s what I was telling you about. Too bad I haven’t had the chance
to get myself knocked up just yet.
I could use a few gullible ears right now.
That’s what kids are for, isn’t it? You fill their heads with
your mistakes and send them out to seize the world
one shotgun shell at a time.
You feed them hate and horror stories until their adrenaline glands
kick in and their hormones rage and they’re too busy
bashing in the brains of every man, woman, and child that acts or looks or
talks like you to listen to your bullshit wisdom anymore.
You tell them about death and drugs and rock and roll and
sex and Woodstock and communism and broken condoms and doctored drinks
and your cousin’s roommate’s boyfriend’s uncle’s wife’s godmother’s sister’s
stepson’s boa constrictor’s regurgitated breakfast
that swears it saw a girl pedal straight into the high beams
that bounced off of the hailstones that fell from the
sky and honked at the furious rotten whore
who landed on her feet or her hands or her head and
I can’t remember which because I was stoned and
I’m sorry im sorry, but I must have kept riding,
got back on and kept going, because now I’m here
in this mosh pit of screaming and yelling and
moaning and crying but
Mama I love you. Mama
I’m home and it looks like the flames
have been kind to you.
I want to hug you and tell you about the places I’ve been
the commandments I’ve broken
the lives I’ve taken
but I’m bleeding from the eyes
and I can’t feel my legs so you’d better just
fetch the nails
if you think you can forgive me
long enough to love me again.
Put me up on my crutch and we’ll laugh
like old times at the curses of the damned as our frozen
crucifixes skip over the tidal wave of oven-toasted
insanities like weathered stones on an infant stream.
Won’t the fire eat away at the macadam?
I want to smell the ocean burn.
Hold me, Mama, and I’ll stay here with you
from now until never.
Pin me down, do it quick, and swing the mallet fast
before I forget how good it felt