You train-jumping vagabond tramp,
only home you know is a camp,
ashen-shoed as you move on through
sidestreets, foot trails, Route 62.

Roaming spirit, you’re a rumor,
haint with a whiskey-flask humor,
orphan from the carnival glow,
dressed for jazz, but a geek sideshow.

Sometimes you hum low to yourself,
or sing aloud like a drunk elf,
voice like a shovelful of slate,
heavy and coarse, yet free from weight.

Will you find what you’re looking for,
rambling state to state, door to floor?
Or is it the walk you’re after?
Hounding moonlight, girls, and laughter.

The horizon rolls to meet you
like a stray dog slow to greet you
and though you do not pet its brow
the world wags its tail—take a bow.

“God-Given” Gifts

He visits museums and art galleries

to see the master works of sculptors and painters

(because they have a God-Given gift, too).

He goes to concert halls, opera houses, jazz clubs,

to hear deft musicians play songs

(because they have a God-Given gift, too).

He attends theaters and goes to the cinemas

to watch brilliant actors become other people

(because they have a God-Given gift, too).

He watches comedy shows and standup routines

to laugh at the witty jokes comedians tell

(because they have a God-Given gift, too).

He looks after the runaways, the prostitutes,

the transvestites and the vulnerable,

enticing them into his car, talking to them like

an old friend, kindly neighbor,

philanthropist in times of need,

taking them

somewhere remote, quiet, and alone,

and he bludgeons them, stabs them,

strangles them, rapes them, kills them,

chops up their bodies, takes


for his own home gallery,

disposes of the remains

and then he calls their relatives on the phone,

mocks them,

tortures them with his firsthand accounts,

relives his depravity through their fresh tears,

and he

leaves complacent clues at the scenes of his crimes

to taunt the cops,

watching the News media

to rejoice in his grand debut,

becoming famous as the anchors

talk him up to

Godzilla proportions of destruction,

and then, satisfied, he

lays low for a year,



returning when the ruckus has subsided,

cultivating his celebrity once again

with a second season of murders,

elated as his alter-ego alias

passes along the lips of those who

pray against his trespasses,

and eventually he

betrays himself,

outs himself so he can be celebrated with

loathing, with infamy,

with international intrigue

through books, movies, cult status,

fan mail, declarations of love,

becoming a cultural phenomenon

as famous as Raphael or Elvis,

and all because

he has a God-Given gift, too.

Lo Fi Firefly

Soft tread, soft glow, she’s a firefly

in a black hoodie, black mood, she’s walking by

on a country road, with snug bug headphones

pumping lo fi beats, piano tones.

School blazer, senpai-hazer, plaid skirt,

breezy frills, black stockings, mid-thigh flirt,

luminescent crescent lunar-lobed ear

sprouting diamond petals, her black bangs sheer;

ambling, rambling, moontime walk,

hill humps, roadside bumps, cricket talk,

stars distant, obi-bright, pebble speckled,

blue nebula banners helter-skelter freckled,

full moon brimming, limning, dreaming radiance,

the moonbow spectrum and its gleaming gradients.

The tanuki strolls up along beside her,

a raccoon bear without a care, as tall, but wider,

straw hat, sleepy gaze, whistling his song,

swaying arms, masked face, bobbing along,

no words, no eye contact, just some space

in warm Summer air, and the slight trace

of matcha tea, of forest freshness, quite mellow,

now street signs glowing here and there, bright yellow,

two figures part at the coming parkway yield

and he lays down in a nice rice paddy field.

Shoegaze drone now, briny oceanic breeze,

kiss of soft-flung surf, the low-key ease

of tides glaze-lazing to a lounge rhythm,

the tip-toeing piano cadence within them,

lulling stroll, gloss-stare, the forgetful sands,

sonorous seaside cliffs, echo-waves, drowsy lands,

a mountain sloping to a nonchalant crest,

encoiled in a centipede of silent forest,

eyes aglow in the syncopating serpent depths,

old monk mantra along tottering treble clefs,

shuffling silent sneakers seeking inland,

a pink valentine card held in hand,

the fireflies blinking with a mild, beguiled beat,

the pitter-patter of phantasmal feet,

pale-faced spirits hopping in the high tree tops,

beyond the Shinto shrine sheltered in the copse,

jittery, chittering childlike babble,

a somnolent little branch-borne rabble

and concordance with the green leaf rustle

in the torpid winds, quiet hustle-and-bustle,

never hurrying, yet coming, by and by, along

as she follows her innocent inner song.

Power lines, now, streetlights, lamp posts,

electric hum, neon lights, jaywalking ghosts,

small town midnight-twilight, insomniac windows,

no headlights, no bed-frights, the wind blows

unheard, unseen, her black hair still,

unmoved, slight frown, turning of her heel

down a sidestreet, panes dim, white wall alley

as percussion beats palpitate, then rally.

Long walk without talk, she reads the address,

still bobbing to mellow music, a raven tress

gone astray, the headphones looser now,

but not off, firefly glow waning on her brow.

A crow crosses the moon, wings like eyelashes

as the moon’s eye blinks, and the car crashes

in flashback, (crash-smack), soft as a dying mist

in dim memory, and now this long-sought tryst.

A waking dream, long-sought scheme, a lost lullaby

as the lo fi beats fade, fade, fade, the heartbeats die.

Looking up at his window, she sees, she knows

the music stopped hours ago, and now the wind blows

but is unfelt, unknown, a thing now apart

like the valentine card, and his beating heart.

Setting the card down, she turns away,

fading out with the music, and the coming day.

Eclectic Afterglow

Listen— acid jazz sluices so avant garde
that the melodies gel and overlap
abroad the babbling Babel boulevard
and neath the cymbal-crashing thunderclap.
Thunder rolls on the downpour and downbeat,
ambient dance-trance Rickrolling raindrops,
splashing puddles and fast Scat-shuffling feet,
umbrella-popping drizzle Doo-wop bops.
Stiletto metronome-dome staccato,
epileptic city edged in glowsticks
and craving some raves on the downtown row
atop lunar roof-ledge isometrics.
Hear the horn-blast traffic jam sax solo
in a sfumato-plumed cigarette haze?
A dashboard chiaroscuro ghost-glow
mingles amongst the greenlight-redlight craze.
Rack-stacked skyscrapers with wine-glass facades
and windshield shotglasses of crystal light,
warbling cop sirens peal through pedal mods,
fierce fluttering flamenco through the night.
Wakeful chords strike athwart drowsy vigils,
sidewalk insomnia and groggy grooves,
bleary shopping windows, neon sigils,
and pothole hip-hop polyrhythmic moves.
Riverside jive and the torrential croon,
piano patter-splatter as clouds clear
and the club-hopping, buzz-happy new moon
welcomes in the hectic-eclectic year.
Now hear the windshield wiper DJ scratch
as the storm-drain reverb drones on and on—
see the horizon flare like a lit match
to start the mosh-pit of a punk-rock dawn.


Though he was deaf, there brewed
furious fronts of sound
within a mind imbued
by a muse lightning-crowned,
and the vault of his skull
would never be denied,
the notes bellowing full
of the songs trapped inside—
a snowglobe that contained
storms born in silent glass,
the thunderclouds that rained
while his tempests gained mass,
raging thus, even now,
and resonating aft
from his fulgurous brow
and his undeterred craft.
Though he was thus impaired
with silence in his ears,
he dreamed of storms and dared
to resound through the years.

Music Lessons

She professed her passions wholly mute
when enjoined at the cusp, lips tuned to lips,
yet he played virgin curves as a flute,
fingers fluttering with their deft-toned tips,
and he blew in measure so astute
the melody resounded through her hips,
and therefrom did vibrations take root;
from pelvis to legs, from bosom to nips.

Honky-Tonk Heartbreak

She croons over the Karaoke boom,
voice as smoky as fresh-charred barrels of oak,
white lightning across the busy barroom,
both hot and sugary—whiskey cut with coke.

She is a rough woman weathered with age
and the seasons of dragging a heart on sleeves—
hollow-eyed, denim-thighed, veiled on the stage
with her auburn hair the shade of Autumn leaves.

She sings her Loretta Lynn like a dirge
for the Man in Black, lost deep in his cup,
her soul rising, fermented, in a surge,
dividing the hot whiskey from the syrup.

Burning Out

I saw a shooting star—
it did not travel far
before burning itself out
without a whimper or shout,
and I thought of Cobain
who blew out his grungy brain.
He said “Don’t fade away,”
which is a hell of a thing to say,
but he did get his final wish,
eating a hot slug dish
and now they all praise him
for not letting himself go dim.
But didn’t he, though?
I believe so.
A tortured star, he was,
or so says all the buzz;
the buggy buzz in his head
which was why he is dead
because he could not clean his skull
of the insects, all overfull,
and so chose a lobotomy—
brain-fuck sodomy
to cleanse the kingdom,
which, I think, a thing dumb
to do,
don’t you?
He had great teen spirit,
though I don’t hear it
in the repetitive chords
for the zombie hordes,
and he must have known
the seeds he had sown,
because if you live long enough
on counter-culture bluff
it eats you alive,
all that bitter beehive
of angst and sarcasm—
you can’t even orgasm
without being ironic
or, at the least, Byronic.
Why else name your band
“Nirvana” when manned
by someone so “over it”
as to be a perfect fit
for an eye-roll model,
a “Molly”coddle.
mic Mono blast
who kissed a whole generation
into Hole-hearted veneration
until the Love soured
to see himself so empowered.
He was a quasar
who emitted far,
but it all had to conclude
for the bleach-blonde dude.
When loved all around
even the grungy underground
will rise to the Pop peak
and become quite chic,
and atop that summit
he chose to plummet,
so the star burned himself black
before his Sisyphean back
stooped with old age
and was thrown from the stage
for becoming what he hated
as we all do when outdated.
Don’t fall behind…
Never mind.
Meteoric fame
and a meteorite name,
all in all
after the stars fall
a cold space stone
spoken with a fervid tone
in the mouth of a fanboy
who fans the flames to annoy
the rest of us,
blowing stardust.
Whatever, mop-hair—
I don’t care.
Sellout sob stories
also have their glories.
I won’t weep over his tomb
or mope in the after-gloom.
Have you heard the new Nine Inch Nails?
That pulsar really sells
on the radio waves
now and again, in enclaves,
being a downward spiral
that was once viral.
Reznor had some things to say
about the starfuckers in his day…

Occult of Personality

Look Westward
and witness mediocrity run amok
like Lemmings following Lemmings
into fatal banality.
And by looking Westward I mean to look
at West’s Word,
Kanye West’s Word, his
Bible of celebrity, the Way of Yeezus
and Kim West’s self-worship;
hereby witness the blah-blah-blah blasé
in its purest form.
they groom their personas, like expensive
lap pets, creating a cult
of personality,
and yet only a few Occultists are purview to their
true souls—
their vapid, soulless shells
not unlike corn husk detritus
discarded en masse by the
cornfed social media industry.
They are famous
for being famous,
just as the town drunkard is drunk
by imbibing drink; but at least he is
if only for a while,
and famous for a reason.
But here, in America, every day is
a Saturnalia, a Feast Of Fools
when we hoist these unremarkable
upon our shoulders and tell them
they rule the realm of our
interior worlds.
Nor is it mere Pop Culture, but
Refined Culture that is infected by this
hallucinogenic brain worm.
Instagram poets give
a gram’s worth of
vanilla poetry
and are celebrated for their
lowest common denominator ruminations.
They speak of “accessibility”
as if poetry requires ramps,
all the while failing to see that
their poetry is what premises
for their readers’ minds.
Crass and callous? A low blow?
Yes, but this is not resentment—
it is an exorcism of demons.
This is salty
because salt is needed
to expel the demons.
You may be part of the cult,
but you are not Occult; you do not know
the false idols you worship, nor are they
as real as some false idols may be.
They are carved not from granite
or gold or jade, but from
silicone, makeup tutorials, wigs,
Photoshop, video editors, cgi,
angled lighting, scripts, staged stunts,
studio touch-up, auto tune, PR firms,
incendiary comments, outrage-baiting,
political photo ops, two-year-old boundary
testing, and, of course,
bland envy. The masses envy,
as any person naturally will,
and have just so happened to latch onto these
commodified homunculi
and invested into their fetish forms
the wistful wish-fulfillment
via surrogate, via avatar
for the mediocrity that they,
embody. These mirages of
self-referential product placement
are emblematic of our own commodified
lives, only with better
adverts and media presence.
The advertisement
is the product being sold; the product
is the advertisement. We are
a recursive, epiphenomenal loop.
Celebrate the
lackluster self
by celebrating the cardboard cutout
Being unmerited
is a merit now.
Being untalented
is a talent.
Being mediocre
is being extraordinary.
And witness the faerie glamour
worked upon their idolaters!
Reality star actors
staged and cheesing for the camera;
cheesing like a canister of whipped cheddar
mass produced and
cheaply bought
whereby the casual eater might tip his head back
and fill his mouth with a single press of the
Yahoo article, the MTV video, the smartphone app.
And there are the Youtubers
high on excitement for
buying into the self-hype so that the
groundless self-involvement
becomes infectious through vectors of
pixels and soundbytes, the memetic
Lovecraftian horrors worse than
body infestation films
and psychodrama thrillers, their smiley personas being the
synergetic amalgam overtaking
subscribers with channels, websites, and
it is the invasion of the podcast people.
Subscribe to me and I’ll subscribe to you.
Follow me and I’ll follow you:
the definition of herd mentality, and the blind
leading the blind. A circle-jerk of
dickless sycophantic narcissists, the paradox of it all being
the only thing about them that is remarkable.
To watch them is to watch us.
Celebrate us.
Celebrate the US,
the cultural equivalent of a
wet rag
that cloys and clings and
waterboards with mediocrity.
And if the Kanye Wests of the Western World
“speak to truth”
a billion bobble-headed people
are there to nod in pop-headed Pop
idiocy, and self-righteousness,
the clarion battle cry issued for
their keyboard crusades from
Kim West, or Taylor Swift, or
whatever other idol of outrage and public standing
is embroiled in another hype-generating skirmish,
rallying them to their mean-girls jihad
with words as fake as the
silicone lips from which they sputter
in perpetual duck-face.
We have come to the uncanny valley
and laid down in it to die.
We are so accustomed to
fake people
that real people being themselves
is the uncanny valley we all fear.
All is plastic.
All is real.
Nothing is fake.
The gluttonous eyes of billions
render all things real in the worship thereof.
Plastic prosthetics were once used to compensate life,
to supplement deficiencies, the mutilations of
war and work,
but now life is a prosthetic
and we live through synthesized polymer demigods,
mutilating Reality to please them.
We pollute the earth with plastics
so why not also pollute with it our
newsfeeds, our houses,
our televisions, our hours, our hearts,
our minds?
Manmade artifice is preferable
to Nature’s artfulness.
All is plastic; all is dildo.
Even our president is a
reality tv star; a man hailed by his base
for being “real”, “genuine”, and
“saying it like it is”
as he lies upwards to a hundred times a day.
A pyrite president
for a pyrite nation.
We crave fool’s gold
for it gleams and shimmers and shines
and only fools would mistake it for having
or values,
and so our president embodies us
in all of our cherished contrivances
clutched so dearly in the
halo of a digitally constructed lens-flare.
We are a nation that values
spectacle over substance.
We love the flamboyant mask
for blinding us to the vacuous conceit.
And like Kanye West, and Trump, and
Taylor Swift, we begin to believe in our own
masks. We are subsumed
by the forgery.
The Heartland of America
no longer beats true,
but is set to a pacemaker.
The Promethean flame has been replaced
by an LED blacklight
and we are too mesmerized by the dark glow
to notice the bloodstains illuminated upon
the Cultural murder scene.
We value the distraction
over the revelation; the coverup
over the truth.
And if you think you know your heroes
by the persona they present
know that you may very well know them,
for they are the product whose purpose
is to sell itself—like a pet rock
or a paperweight
in the paperless digital age.
To truly know them
is to know your own mediocrity.