Paraphasia, Or Modern Poetry And Word Salad

The emperor wears no clothes,
but he is layered in words—
word to word, the weaving shows
no sense given in ten words.
Layered in motley and phrase
signifying but nothing
as he grandstands in a daze
his wardrobe nought but stuffing.
His word-robe’s a collection
of kitschy artifice sewn
without any reflection
as he struts around his throne.
And all his little vassals
praise his “beautiful” word choice,
proving those in their castles
require no meaningful voice
to rule tasteless sycophants
and such obsequious friends,
never needing fashion sense
when he decrees the new trends.
Tailors can patch together
such words that are as mismatched
as “puppy-love” and “tanned leather”,
no one scoffing at what’s patched.
But a truthful little boy
will still have his honest word,
and though it may well annoy
he must point out the absurd:
“Your words don’t mean anything,”
the boy says, “They’re just random.
Randomness never does bring
more poetry in tandem.
Rather, it’s a game of chance,
a lottery that is drawn
in service to happenstance
as you babble on and on.”
Alas, the boy’s committed
as a blind, deaf, and dumb mute,
all thinking him slow-witted
while the Fool, being astute,
(as all Fools must truly be)
commends his ruler, then smirks,
and, smirking, asks, “How came thee
unto such masterful works?”
“Whatever words come to me,”
the Emperor says, “I jot,
but give it little mind—see?
For nothing ruins like thought.”
The Fool laughs. “Aye, by my troth,
that seems with little thought seamed,”
he says, though none become wroth
at the slight he thereby schemed,
for they are clueless cattle
all chewing meaningless cud,
praising pretentious prattle
like children playing in mud.
“Jabberwocky,” the Fool notes,
“has been used by Popes and Kings,
just like weasel words, or stoats,
to tout many inane things
while meaning nothing at all
save to rule by inanity.”
The Fool tumbled down the hall,
lest they hear his sanity.
“But we also must reflect
on such poetry and how
the Dunning-Kruger effect
steals sense from every brow.”

Word Salad

There are cockroaches scurrying
in the jumbled salad bowl
of the midnight special,
unashamed within the neon light
of this downtown diner.
Do not try to persuade me
that they are almonds
as the other patrons praise the chef
and vomit profusely on the counter.

Haiku Reviews: Death Stranding


This is a new series I am attempting to start and continue for a while.  It will concern reviewing anything for which I feel inclined, whether it be a book, movie, tv series, or whatever.  Today I happen to feel inclined to review Hideo Kojima’s videogame “Death Stranding”.

These fetch quests offer
a postal loop that ticks off
my P.O.ed boxes.

Following a strand
with fumbling fingers, he frayed
the storytelling.

A Fragile ego
cannot weather the time-fall,
the wrinkles showing.

My red flags were raised
when I first saw the gameplay—
no mail is good mail.

Addressed to fanboys
and Konami with love, yet
dead on arrival.

in grenades of blood and shit
and Monster piss-takes.

The Higgs particle
is deus ex machina,
but can’t save the plot.

Released just in time
for Christmas, it delivers
the holiday ham.

Poems About Poems

Slam “Poetry”
without latitude,
like a star leeching
only to die
in the stage-lit sky.
Showing a lot of sass
and growing to critical mass—
appeal by keeping it real
as to how you feel,
a plastic feel, a scenery meal
of emotions with the drama
overlarge, yet small—a diorama.
Overrated while masturbated.
Your slam doesn’t jam
except like jellied ham.
It’s Instagram spam,
flimsy flimflam.
Anyone can rhyme,
given some luck,
given some time,
given a fuck,
but the scheme
and the theme
have more to score
than a mediocre meme.
Wade out of the shallows,
fade out from the tallows,
parade out to the gallows
and try to hang
with my gang
of poets, of know-its,
before you blow bits.
Show some class
even when wiping your ass,
because the masses
can give only so many passes
to the pretentious
before they lynch us.
Try to understand
that even in Wonderland
you are undermanned
with whatever word-rhyme
allows meaning and flow,
without catching, like birdlime,
to halt you as you go.
There is always a speed limit
for someone of a dim wit—
you are only veering left and right
with one headlight,
like a car on slick roads
while sliding on toads
come out to feel the rain
and listen to the thunder,
not of applause
as you blunder,
but of a worthy cause.
And while you seem to know
how to put on a show,
that foghorn sure does blow
every time you roshambo
for your petty tugboat row.

Rupi What’s-Her-Name
A confection of
colorless cotton candy
substance and sophistication
and sold popularly to
sweet-tooth instagram sycophants
from a mollycoddled generation
longing for safe spaces away from the
carnival grotesqueries
of life.
Put her cotton candy words
in your mouth
and they dissolve precipitously;
easily digested, for there is nothing
of substance
in their wispy conceits.
Eaten and forgotten
upon the same instant,
nothing lingering as an
nothing to chew
as it
vaporizes vapidly
on the malnourished palate.

Soap opera soapbox antics
and papier mâché frailty,
the outsized pinata of an
easily busted heart
spilling suicide notes
written on Starbucks napkins.
Before you go hang your
Emo effigy
from a church’s belfry,
Your pity-party has got the
Fire Marshall
Mellow out the melodrama
and the melancholy
you melon-headed colic baby.
You treat your podium as if it was a
chopping block
and every time you step up to it
the greatest tragedy is taking place.
Your persecution complex is less
and more
What are you a martyr for?
Who isn’t?
Cupid has made a
St. Sebastian
out of everyone, whereas
some of us wear the quills like wings
to ascend the past
and you act like a canary in a collapsing coal mine,
but you are just high on your own
You don’t have a broken wing,
only a
compromised spine.

Game Of Thrones TV Character Critique Haikus

Edgelord supreme, you
killed many men, but died of
cringy dialogue.

Veritas varies,
but the truth heard in the flame
meant nothing at all.

Jon Snow
Dead from betrayal
by the inept screenwriters—
remained dead plot-wise.

I thought you would change
to a villain with time, but
also with reason.

“The smartest person”
literally no-one says—
entitled yas-queen.

You lost half your nose
in your nosediving plot arc,
and half of your brain.

The Three-Eyed Raven
saw all, and did not one thing
except bait and switch.

Shortchanging others
as the most frequent sellout,
now master of coin.

The Night King
Your hand shatters steel
and downs dragons, yet cannot
pierce Stark plot armor.

All season in the
Red Keep—or in the red wine?
Just window dressing.

Who would have thought that
the Kingslayer would be killed
by Lord Hightower?

Snuffed out all at once
in the dark, then stoked larger
in ashes later.

Grey Worm
Failing to avenge
his queen in court, he must have
no brains and no balls.

Having twice the eyes
he has in the books, he still
lacks half the vision.

GOT Story Arcs For Seasons 5-8
The Mummer’s Dragon
lost its stage curtain wings while
Winter came and went.

Hodor, Hodor, Hold
the door, Hodor, Hodor, Holed
up their own asses.

The Orni-Mentalist

How florid the feathers of his prose
as his quill feverishly flaps a wingstroke
to fluff up the stories he tries to compose,
all hatchlings half-formed in the yolk.

Cumbrous syllables slow every word
and stilted syntax is a roundabout migration
for a storyteller who employs every type of bird
to adorn a flightless imagination.

Nesting in language meant to aggrandize,
he wants his writing to be as the Roc,
yet he cannot fly, shorn and of small size—
neither Eagle nor Wren, Flamingo nor Hawk.

Taping purple peacock feathers to his brow
to distract from the small bird nesting there,
he is a Bantam who impresses others somehow
though too over-feathered to fly anywhere.

Flat Soda Pop

His acclaimed poetry is the
backwash of soda Pop philosophy;
flat, lacking fizz, full to the brim
with high fructose corn syrup
and leaving a nasty taste on the rim,
for it is what is all thrown up
after he has sampled his own swill,
drinking himself until he has had his fill
and gags himself upon his cloying cup.
The Pop is but plop, never to stop
while his fans’ words of praise spill still
all over the world—sticky and in want of a mop.


Plot, character, setting, and action
should all be established in stride,
not each in a conflicted faction
facing off on an opposing side,
and yet this doddering fool plods about,
left and right and questing so aimlessly,
then squatting down to shit it all out
and wallowing in it shamelessly.
He so loves the smell of his own shit,
thinking his discharge a lavender scent
while he rolls round-and-round in it
like a scatophiliac decadent.
And critics praise his every word
as if he is raising anew the sun,
but it is a balled-up bit of turd—
the story which this dung beetle has spun.