Semantic Opacity

Beyond the socially-imposed identities, we weep

while we’re weary of the world we face.  The lexicon

of power has made illiterates of us all.  Weak.  Defenseless.

Away from judging eyes, we’re all scared.  And rightly so.  We

adopt thoughts, “Glad that’s not my

coastline that’s being destroyed by a nuclear leak, and you can’t

make me give up my weapons”—Denial of the conspiracy

of light: they only go out when you stop shoveling

the coal.  That is unless you look to the stars

when night falls, then you understand something different.

Then you realize it’s only this breath

that knowledge is exposed.

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Each Feather It Fell From Skin

How do I continually find myself

as the soft fleshy object

of fiction? I offer real, tangible, havable

affection, Love, I get

 

ignored. Preference is given

to thoughts symbolizing me

instead of my diminishing, darling,

deadly door to reality.

 

Is that all I’m good

for? Being a fantasy

to man? I open

myself up to show

 

all of my blood on route through

the veins of my body breaking

closer to the surface of skin

daily for decades now

just to be ignored for the imaginary

 

world I could never really be

a part of. Threadbare, barren,

broken, beaten by my very

 

existence. I’m not afraid

anymore. I just am

 

experiencing life as nothing

more than a make-

believe thing. Shrines,

obelisks are erected

in my honor. Giant

 

paintings made in my likeness.

The charcoal smudges

on a framed paper. Ink smudges

on particles are more real

to men than the same ink

smeared along my left hand.

 

Know me. Embracing me

is so different than knowing

the disdainful beauty that is me.

Wasted Human Activities

 

We are here to people the Industrial remains

of the Wastelands. There is no innocence

permitted in the space of polluted breath.  The uncorrupted

smile of an infant offers nothing alluding to

hope in this world of progress.  The children have been

abandoned anyhow, since

grammar schools have been invaded

by tools of rage. Innocent coos

berate the listener—if listening well

enough—about the vast inheritance of

misery bestowed on the unknowing

lips of the child.  In the beginning, it all

seems so promising.  New crocus blossoms burst

out of the barren frost-bitten earth trumpeting in

the vivid purples, oranges, reds, and blues of lush green,

front-yard gardens.  Bright eyes look on to

ripening backyard fruit trees with salivation,

while knowing the soil is too diseased to taste anything

growing out of it.  When the child grows enough to reach

for the apple, rot oozes from the fruit still clinging

to its home, the branch. Sustainability promises to be

a trap of chronology.  Don’t bother looking

in the future it is always changing.  There

is a legacy of dust left over to people.  April’s

acid rain’s corroding the gears that function

in the market called free by some legislative body.  Working

in an economic machine, freedoms dwindle to red

scans and beeps of something thing

that claims to be

need. That is what we know:

mass confusion of wants.  We have determined love is

a platform launching campaigns of distraction

cloaked in a thin veil of hate that goes by the name

Money, so we pay more attention to

the wanton sex-lives of generals more so

than the need for help in the wake of

a disaster usually given a woman’s

name.   Brain-damaged, we consume

ourselves so ravenously the trash shrouds

anything significant.  How much do we need?

The debts of our behaviors have diminished the lives

of trees, and who knows just how much

significance that is.  Nothing

untouched.  Are roots to clutch

dust, what branches grow out of dust?

With systematic blindness, we name externalities.

Memory moves like waves from the ground

of a small town in Witbank, just outside of

Johannesburg, South Africa: a reminder that

there is a burning hell underground

entirely made by man

which promises to make everything blaze

with the thickest hazy smoke screen

while it burns.  That truth burns somewhere

in Pennsylvania too, and the town it’s in has turned

to ghosts. What a profane menagerie

of sin locked in the prison of human

skin. See every rotten contradiction in

the electronic hiss of everything around. This,

my friends, is the evolution of

sound, and how it shapes every knowledge

thought to have been learned.  We forget

what we really don’t know, and never seem to seek it

because we are too damn distracted

by something different. It’s always

been, and we have never learned.  Stories

are stories for the purpose of acquiring

 

what it means to you.  Seething tissue

looking for home, constantly

 

swallowed whole and wrapped with everything,

outside of anything pulsing, that’s what we really possess.

When shall we be as the swallow?  One can suppose never,

given the fact that grace is disdainfully

beautiful.  We fumble through this short space of breath,

pretending to be our own lissome savior of

moments, and choosing blindness

when encountering everything we can’t

see.  Ignoring the sound of everything

around.  Advertisements, they trick us into being

the pill causing the sickness which causes the need

of pills, and they make a killing with that

approach.  We are dying with no

patience.  Hear each breath

with tears.  The backlit plasma screen, our eyes

conceal our own un-translated epitaphs

presented by a simulation

forging the signification of a book

saying it begins with a face.  The face is

just an external expression of

what the heart wishes it could

say.  No one recognizes

the system defining the elegy of our

breeding.  We’ve been prisoners in this

astronomical vacuum of ego.  Be mindful

in the obvious pain hidden by the banal

analgesic named distraction.  The distinction

between mental health and mental

wealth has been blurred, so everything looks smudged

like fine penmanship bleeding from tears on onionskin.

Everything is pixelated, same

as the fragmentation of our being.

The Sun Shines After the Eclipse

 

During different hours

leading to the moment

 

of change, the heart can be shaken

stiff making movement labored.

 

Synchronicity is smiling

from side

to side in moments like this.

 

Poseidon’s Affection Object

The river was not like it is

today, drying up and polluted

with human vileness.  Ain’t no

 

one gonna transubstantiate a drop

from that shit show of water:  Depleted water

source for the great River riddle

on this planet. The river bore life

 

in the Eden

story, now the water feeds human

pestilence and nuclear waste.  This story is no

 

different.  Before any battles of man

scarred the river bed

made of vermillion and hate, an eight stone

egg washed ashore in the alluvial

 

fan of the Euphrates.  Out of the opal shell

from full spectrum of light enters a creature,

the great son of Cronus had never

once witnessed. A thing timid and sharp

shifting shapes from mermaid to scorpion

to finally form a mountain. Like any God

when confronted by distaining beauty

(it’s disdainful because they can’t grasp it, hold

 

it, make love to it because just as they get

what they desire it always begins diminishing

in some way because they always have more

to take for granted…makes for precarious

 

jealous behavior).  The great rulers of the universe

 

always forget beauty is a human thing

born from their transience and shifting

mortal flesh giving each other immortality

in the language of beauty.  The artists shall rein

humanity, not by myth made by them, rather

the process of creating.  She was her own

artist for her life. Poseidon stared

at this creature he had not crafted

in disbelief of its existence.  All his great

 

rage of blackest waters stood calmed to soft

lapping of shores on her tail too fishlike

to be of man.  Fluttering her fins

while widening her wings, I am not a part of any

tradition.  I’ve my own voice for others to hear so to see

through my eyes, and I will find water

for my parched

throat.  He doubted his own

eyes—imagine a God doubting—

as she walked away, her scales act as grace to slither

around her two legs walking strong strides

to disappear as the earth she strode

in the form of a mud horse in the rain.  The wind lashed

tidal waves to grab at her naked form losing

grip of the most perfect figure female

any God has ever witnessed.

 

Song of the Starved Soul

This life is killing off

the instinctual wolf, forcing her

 

to please others. She howls

at the moon, the guide

 

to a long night of longing for her

instincts to stay sharp. 

 

The primitive is being

Lost. The woman is now

 

a thing just stuffed

in some old forgotten note. 

The Stuff of Nightmares

Listen. The echoes of childhood are statues
filigreed with the filth of the earth.
 
The ground here is unhealthy, and the night is
Haunted. The dead just keep on working. 
 
Here are the sculptures of mostly good
dreams which did not come true.