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The Imposter Feeds The Birds

Posted in Prose with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 14, 2017 by beautifulimposter

One moment there’s an empty bench, the next there I am. It’s easy when you exist between the cracks of things, you’re always just everywhere. The daylight is weak, watery, thin gold hammered to transparency by winter’s hardness. My breath is the smoke of dragons, or at least that’s the fiction I’m maintaining today.
I rummage through the deep pockets of my great, black coat, picking through the contents, the bits of dreams, lost keys, remnants and fragments until my fingers find the bag of seed. Taking it out, I hold it in my left palm while my right hand dips in, feeling the cool slither of the grains slip sliding. A cast handful glitters briefly, suspended in air that shouldn’t be able to hold the weight of a feather, an arch shimmering bright before bounce scattering across pavement washed in slipshod wisps of snow.
They come slowly, in ones and twos, little, beetle black iridescent, wings fingering strands of cold air before alighting, heads curious tilt, ink drop eyes suspicious yet hunger overrides caution. Starlings, sparrows, little ragged pieces of fugitive night hop between the avenues of seed, needle beaks dipping, peck peck peck.
I watch them, hop and flutter, a moving mandala. Within the blue-purple-green-black feathers the faces surface slowly, rising up from deep, deep waters trapped in jeweled wings. Each feather is a screen, a frame showing the motion picture of a whole life. The stories are endless, myriad, woe and joy, smiles, tears, the rending of garments and spilling of ash, homemade pies, kisses and salt, spinning and whirling, almost more than the eye can hold, or at least more than most eyes. After a while you get used to it. I’ve often thought it’s a wonder they can fly at all, with the weight of all the souls glued to them, caught on honey sticky feathers.
The few passers by are chased by the wicked teeth of the cold, no one looks. Even if they did, they wouldn’t see, it takes a knack that most forget beyond the borders of childhood. A shame really, but that’s is the way, always forgetting, always wondering on to the the next. That’s why I make it a point to sit and feed the birds and watch the lives in the dark mirrors. For the remembering. I scatter another handful and sit back to enjoy the show.

Dispatches From the Front

Posted in Poetry with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 20, 2017 by beautifulimposter

The traffic signals are glass and plastic jewels
Smeared across the windshield
Cheap and gaudy ornamentation suspended
In pools of bruise purple black nighttime sky
While constellations of headlights form and dissolve
Stars afloat, hovering above the slick pavement.

Constant motion, vibrations, humming
Complicated rhythms of hands on wheel,
Feet on the pedals tapping Morse code gibberish
Underpinning radio hiss crackle
Disembodied voices, music, things forgotten
Things remembered by halves, rising and falling
Beneath oily waters, yet never quite breaching.

Bodies come and go, vague shapes
Defined by rustlings in the black,
Faces floating ghosts, masks smiling, grim, in between
Conversations drifting currents around rocky shores
Incomprehensible yet demanding, insistent
Inviting, but the address is lost, the directions
Seem to be in a foreign language.

He’s not really here or there, out of phase
The dial tuned just out of sync
A whole world of in betweens
Caught in the middle of point A to B
Möbius twisting, the cat forever in that box
Tires spinning out forever, still in motion
As a billion moving pictures flicker past.

The stories gather like storm clouds on a lazy tongue
Thick, pouring out in streamers of blue smoke haze
Littering the floorboards, curling up at the edges
Leaves and old photographs
Pinned wriggling between dime-store paperback
Yellowing pages, leaved through, well thumbed
Favorite passages recited prayer beads.

They aren’t his stories, those dried up long ago
Back when his tongue rusted to the roof of his mouth
He just gathers, stitching them together
Her shy smile to his lonely fumbling
Their boisterous revelry to his towering silence
Fingers calloused from needling onion skins
Piles of manuscript, instruction manuals for disused objects.

No rhyme, no reason, dispatches
For disinterested commanders,
From no mans but his land, a pilgrims travel guide
The points of interest among drifting bodies
Sliding past upon the sidewalk banks
The living, the dead, the dreamers
All with stories waiting to be gathered.

Storytelling

Posted in Poetry with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 19, 2016 by beautifulimposter

Everyone always wants to get to the point 
Yet the point is the start, no destination
Just what you hang from, a pendulum 
Until the scissors do their filthy job
First lesson, sharp steel and what it can do
To such vulnerable flesh.

Hey ho, here we go,
We’ll figure out the words as we go along
Turn about, turn away, every season in a day
Page upon page filled
What were we saying, doesn’t matter
Breathe and blink, pausing stutter…

Click clack film reel snicker
Footsteps tapdance tattoo, a billion pavements 
Stitched closed by boot heels
Worn out at the knees, momma please
Not so fast, caught up in the turnstile 
Left holding ticket stubs while the stage staggers on.

What’s your story?
Tangled tongues and breath
Lipstick in the creases
Four mysterious keys and a watch fob
All the million billion tiny bits
Swirling upwards, outwards, all the points
No point whatsoever, except, maybe
The story folded so neatly
Between palms with the lines just beginning to rise

Flow

Posted in Poetry with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 17, 2015 by beautifulimposter

Breathe
In, out, simple
Clean
Toes dug in sand
White foam
Wash, cold
Tidal
Blood rush
Push pull
No resistance
Open, clouds pour through
Arms outstretched
Holding in all skies
Raw nerve trembling
Shoreline reed
Cries of gulls
Echoes, presence of
Far off thunder
Green power
Deep roots
Black earth
Chlorophyll respiration
Sunlight food for
Deep thought
Indrawn
Lungs swallow
Hurricanes
Beautiful destruction
Sound and fury
Yawning forked lightning
Fire and sky
Earth and sea
Flesh and bone
Indrawn
All the love
All the hate
All the pain
All the everything
Washing through
Washing bright new clear
Take, hold, release
Breathe
Out

It’s Funny In A Way (But Really It’s Not)

Posted in Journal, Prose, Writing Process with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 30, 2015 by beautifulimposter

You get one aspect of your life squared away, or at least moving in the direction where it will be possible to get things squared away and another aspect just seems to get completely fubar’d.
I’d say between late June till now-ish has been one of my most creative periods, I’ve written a lot of poetry and a couple of short stories that I’ve actually felt really good about. I have also managed to acquire a small group of friends, still in the early stages of friendship, but way more than I have had in a long fucking time and they are a bunch I really hope I can get in tight with. I have also managed to reacquire gainful employment after being out of work and pretty much worthless for far, far too long.
So here’s the thing. My life seems like it just might be getting back on track yet for some ungodly reason I am feeling so blah creatively all of a sudden. My last few poems have been flat, stale and unoriginal and even though I really want to write, the words just don’t seem to want to play fair, they keep wriggling out of my mental grasp like tadpoles. Even more so, it’s like when you’re trying to catch the tadpoles and you think you’ve got a good head on one but when you dart your hand under the water you became fooled by the distortion of light refraction, the target wasn’t even really there. Hell, even at my last couple of readings I haven’t left the stage feeling that same high, I just can’t seem to catch the rhythm of the words right and it all falls flat.
It’s almost enough to get me buying into the myth that one must suffer to create, which I know is complete bullshit. Yet at the same time it always seems that you get that one plate spinning that was wobbling, almost falling and another is on its way down. I don’t know what to make of this and even in this moment of jubilation (I was grinning like a mad idiot earlier just being able to say out loud “I have a job”) I still find this feeling of frustration and a gnawing doubt. Looking over some of my stuff, I’m finding fault, even pieces that have been publicly well received seem like hack work. I hate that, because a part of me knows that they are good but in this moment not only can I not make anything new I’m trying to destroy what I have built. The last couple of years I sort of put the question of whether or not I have any talent as a writer out of my head but only because I was much more concerned with the question of my over all value as a human being and finding myself very much lacking. As soon as that seems to even begin to turn around all of a sudden I’m back to wondering if I really have a voice, if I have anything truly worth saying even if I do.
It’s the up and down that kills me. I use this a lot in all of my writing, but I am just so tired, so bone deep weary of it all. I’m trying my best to figure it all out, I’m trying my hardest to maintain that balance, I really, truly am giving it everything I have but I am just so very tired. I know I whine a lot on here. This is the only place though I can get this shit out, just so that it’s not living inside my head any more, because it is too bloody full all of the time.
That’s it really, that’s all, thanks for listening.

Vatican Gift Shop

Posted in Poetry with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on September 17, 2015 by beautifulimposter

I feel so very raw
Skin rubbed and scraped
Steel wool ragged
Every surface open
Bloody, layer after layer removed
Exposed muscle
Nerves connected to wires
Current turned up
Rigid, epileptic
Twitching, never ending spasm
Fish flopping on desert rock
Drowning in the bright shimmering air
Hallucinating oceans
Superimposed over smooth, slippery dust
Gasping, perfect last kiss lips
Parched, dry as bone
Dry as tears from decades ago
Just as impotent
Just as barren
Ribs open to the sky
A scuttled ship thrusting upwards
Jagged reminders pushing up
Through mold and grassy tussocks
Fragments to be stored
In blackened silver reliquary
All the tiny pieces reverently gathered
Buried in the deeper silence
Body become mineral
Spread out over a thousand velvet cushions
Perhaps clutched to a bosom
In hope or succor
That I could never provide
Whilst I was meat, just little better
Than carrion
That held breath for far too long,
Better now a souvenir
Frozen under plastic
In the Vatican gift shop.

By Inches

Posted in Poetry with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on August 1, 2015 by beautifulimposter

Watching shadows cross the street
Growing from hovels clustering about
The brick and mortar feet
Of the shops and cafes
Soon to become towers themselves
Castles, forth floor twilight walk-ups
Apartments for stick people
Caricatures, emblems,
All lines and angles, now scrap of meat or bone
Without dimension, pasteboard placard flat
Penumbral cityscape silhouette
Painted across the pavement.

Everything in marginal increments
Sundials keep time in inches
Revolving around cupola and steeple gnomons
Emanating from bars playing out on bar at a time
Measure for measure
Cavern door mouth yawning sleepy wide
Opening at day’s close
Watching the sun drooping
A great eye sinking inexorably lower
Fighting a losing battle against slumber
Bright child laying her weary head
To dream beneath the counterpane
Distant purple hills.

Children sleep and dream comfortably
Now it’s the grown-ups time to play
Or rather perhaps just bigger kids
Clinging grubby fingered to memories
Of passion, wild freedom, or maybe just fucking
Furtive sticky fumbling a barely hidden
In the not quite shadows of alleys
Illuminated by heated liquor glow,
The cool blue, red, yellow buzz
Of neon beer signs
Washing over just enough bare skin.

Saturday nights always hum
Electric wordless vibrations of desperation
Urgencies, haste, all the rictus smile
“Are we having fun or else” faces
Eyes fever bright glossy
Flush cheeked, panting, guzzling
Bodies whirling in peculiar Brownian fashion
Clustering, breaking, hurled from doorway to doorway
Governed by laws of appetite
How much make believe merriment
Can be sucked from bones long dry
Before the dusty grey mortuary return
Of Monday’s work, bills, kids, real life imprisonment shackles.

It’s all just illusion, mass market media massage fabrication
Inhabiting pop culture movie sit com canned laughter
Versions of reality, buying in
To the need, to the plastic
“Your life can be better for only $19.95”
Or the price of one night’s competitive drinking
Mad dash finish line scrambling to fill
Empty beds or empty hearts with The One
Prophesied by the people who brought you “Friends”
Or “When Harry Met Sally”

The thing is, it all breaks down
Before the last reel
Just ash encrusted hair and clothes
Taut flatline hangover migraine
Mouthful of morning breath after vomit flavor
Over churning belly full of regret
Walk of shame zombie two step weary shuffle
Stretched thin and blank as paper,
Just stick figure semblances, cartoons
Running mad dash out if frame
Dwindling into the rising dawn by inches.