Paean

I busy myself with
throwing noise at the void,
humming a hymnal myth
till the day is destroyed,
then silence will claim all,
uncluttering vast space
with a hush that will fall
over God’s deaf-mute face.
Will the echoes linger
when my mouth goes quiet?
Will another singer
raise their voice in riot
against the void we know
beneath the paean’s din?
Or will what is below
deafen all that has been?
Myth is a song of lies
sung against the Silence,
rallying Man to rise
to defy…deny sense
of the gulfs in the void
wherein meaning fades fast,
a chorus soon destroyed;
even gods cannot last
within the howling din
of the cosmic spaces,
the deafening within
that steals and erases
all that was sung before,
and all to come after,
singing songs nevermore,
nor words, sobs, or laughter,
nor even the last sigh
of the last thing on earth;
the unsounding goodbye
before a stillborn birth.

Happy Hollow Road (My Old KY Home Parody)

O, the moonshine’s bright
over Happy Hollow Road,
Tis nighttime,
the locals are drunk.
Well, the locals fight
cuz their guts squirm like a toad
while bourbon makes them sick
like a skunk.

Sleep no more, dear neighbor,
oh sleep no more tonight.
We throw down loud
for Happy Hollow Road,
for Happy Hollow Road,
we oft fight.

Well, the drunk folks hurl
all over the outhouse door.
They’re angry, all
squirrelly and crazed.
Bend over for moontide
and fall flopping on the floor,
piss where they all may lay,
drunk and dazed.

Mariana’s Song

Another eve passed alone
and I ponder my cold bed,
the night air chilling to the bone,
the hearth of day dark…now dead.

Single candle, you burn low
on the window sill nearby,
your flame is small, your wax aflow
as the teardrops from an eye.

Do I fret the solitude
and its all-too-silent hours?
Do I linger in this dark mood
of a wine that quickly sours?

I take turns about my room
and recall your lips to mine;
and in that mournful midnight gloom
I can see the full moon shine.

It shines afar—ghostly wan
with the daylight it borrows
from a fickle sun that has gone
to happier tomorrows.

Away! Away! Flee you far
from whence you oft wished not leave;
you were as constant as a star—
now dew athwart spider-weave.

My looking-glass shines no more,
nor can it with thin moonbeams,
nor my eyes, nor my smile, nor your
gilded glamor in my dreams.

When I shine, now, I am pale
with the distant light of you,
you are memory of a tale
I tell myself: I love you.

Your scent no longer remains
nor shadows from your light;
I cannot clean these linen stains
of wine, and blood, red on white.

A Bit O’ This, Bit O’ Thine

Down by the frothy-fingered reach
of the greedy tides on the beach
lingering, lounging on the sand—
slimy, salty, seeking with hand
for what the sea has yet to take
with each moon-glossed, waking wave’s break…

Down, down, down where the waves all crash,
and beneath stars that glint and flash,
a shell breaches the sudsy surf,
dragged by a long arm on the turf,
an arm black like a seasnail’s skin
and slimy as a salesman’s grin.

The voice within the shell beckons
soft as the shoreline that reckons
the flotsam of the ships aground
on the reef and its heartbeat sound—
the desires that have been denied
by Life, by Love, by tempting tide.

And the voice laps oft at the edge
of the Otherworld, at that ledge
between the waking and the dream,
between daylight and how things seem
to the eye that sleeps otherwise
below the waves and moonlit skies.

The local pastor passes by
and gemstones ensorcel his eye…
The mayor glimpses shiny gold
and nascent greed grows overbold…
The wanton sees a dress to wear
like a jellyfish floating fair…
The widow hears the long-lost tune
of her husband who drowned last June…

Hear you that voice that calls to thee?
Hear you that sweet-tongued usury?
It is his claim he offers much
if you do not shrink from his touch
and give what he asks by his whim—
toe or tongue or a lithesome limb.
The cost is sunk, gone, like a hook
and the bait gone, too, oft mistook
as a thing fishermen can lose
without seeing the gain they choose.

“Tell me your wish, O friend of mine,
and I’ll retrieve from bitter brine,
whether gold bauble or glinting jewel
I shall bring up a gift of Yule.
All I ask, dearest friend of mine,
is a bit o’ this…bit o’ thine,
and that you see how fine a friend
I am to you unto the end.”

Refrain
Come! Follow my nautilus shell,
spiraling round and down and down,
and forfeit all you have to sell
for riches, rank, revenge, renown!
Come! Do not waste the tidal hour,
but bring forth what things you may trade
to sweeten a life grown so sour
within wreckage the tides have made!

The Song Of The Sea

The boy, he sits upon the cliff,

head bowed down and his tears streaming —

back home, his mother ’s cold and stiff

as if asleep, but not dreaming.

She washed ashore just yesternight

after a week missing abroad;

she had left the farm aft a fight

with her husband, that sorry sod.

From off this cliff the mother fell

while gathering up bitter tears,

thinking whether she ’d wait a spell

and return home, despite her fears.

But bleak and bitter was the moor

and the world was but a shadow,

the Song of Tides surged on the shore

and the moon called with a mad glow.

Down she fell into the ocean

as if of mind to be as free,

as some say, or so their notion

that she chose the tides of the sea.

For tides fling up along the bluff,

strumming a song of froth and spray,

and though it can be hard and tough,

there ’s no hatred in its way.

For the sea has a strong embrace

that can crush what it loves to death,

yet still she plunged from that high place

so the sea could take her last breath.

Unlike a man when in his drink

whose hands tighten to two hard fists,

the sea surges, but does not think,

splashing softly with its flung mists.

And though her body lay on land,

her soul is still in the free tide…

Look!  The son reaches out a hand

where flung-fingered froth becks inside.

Kappa Song

20200805_012015-1

Beware, my friend, beware!
If you care, if you dare,
to go make some night soil
when in nights black as oil
near lakes both dark and still
and you feel a slight chill,
if you squat, drop, or stoop,
Kappa will have his soup!
He likes it fresh, of course,
likes it fresh from the source,
so you mind from behind
or he will not be kind,
taking the best of you
for his witching hour stew—
reaching for an hors d’oeurve,
up your butt, like a perv.

Barrel Goblin Song

2020-06-09 02.08.26

We’re the barrel boys
We like bourbon joys
We drink till we stink
Don’t think
Swallow and wallow
Come, ye shall follow
To the dregs below
Let it all flow
Till tis all ye know
Whiskey breath
Risk ye death?
For woes, for frets,
Whiskey forgets
Tame or feral
At your peril
Slur a drinking carol
From inside a barrel
Quaff it down
Wash away your frown
(Till ye drown)
Go hobnobbin’
Become a goblin
Soggin’ yer noggin
Who needs a cup
When yer bottom’s up?
Head down in the drink
And no more will ye think
Of better days
Of the future’s haze
Or the present craze
Drink, drink, drink,
Sink, sink, sink,
Dive right on in
Never surface again

California Dreamin’

The snow is piling high on the
nightstand,
the heaps cut into
New York City snowdrifts
as he snorts the white hills of The Angels,
and like Lot in his cave
after fleeing Sodom
he fondles his daughter
as she lounges in his high-rise bedroom
and plays mama to his papa.
She gets down on her knees
to pretend to pray
and the smile she flashes
is a little girl’s smile
as innocent as American Graffiti
on a 1960’s Hollywood set.
A radio wails in the
suggestive neon-slashed shadows
and she pauses from the
blow
for a divine moment, looking up as if finding
her God.
She listens:
“You know the preacher likes the cold
he knows I’m gonna stay
California dreamin’
on such a winter’s day…”
She slides along another
snowdrift
and crashes into the iconic junkyard
of the American Dream.

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.