the empty orchestra
an insignificant sound
copper coiling rounds
sky-bound battery
makes little progress
against glass sliding outside

black-mat tar-blanket
liquid bluing makes clean
cut grass
lazy torrents
feed the bay
flotsam paralleling jetty
the water here heavy
and deadly to most forms
especially when it gets in

harpoon-hook proboscis
in lonely winter inhabitants
foisted domestics
relearning the feral root
their truth
a 50-gallon warmth necessity
like life in a sulfur pit
the trees bear no fruit

a sign warns of lingering
as if it’s legally binding
but the asterisk says it’s not
a rebellious nature
shouts discourse
against the implication

black drips upward
reflections pool
in the darkness
where the temple lies
reverence and alms paid
inscriptions in service
to the primal creativity
the deity under the bridge
belongs to

the monks’ road
bifurcates repetitious
and the sacred
is no right answer
like piety and tragedy
should have a laugh over drinks

the all
a purely speculative exercise
to pass away the ensuing hilarity

and in the distance
a fervent dead-man’s-grip sincerity
clutching skeleton fingers chant
the end is nearly here

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candles lit in round
drop the background
head drift begins body-heavy
the correct configuration
of gestures and tongue clicks
begin a quantum shift
bending causality
to meet desire
when done correctly
it will be as if
nothing at all
is out of the ordinary
but that’s the illusion

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17 minutes

sunny-side up
ptsd staring contest
shit-raking over coals

the sight
of the lobotomy icepick
hood ornament
freight weight backed
domino follow-through

chilled pin prick fuck you(s)
served over sweet tea
cold to counteract
encroaching global seasoning
ostrich reasoning dug in

head-spin break-back
cannonball-chest wind resistance
tributaries in disuse
vascular toad croaking
bubble neck
and head explodes

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calcaneus clatters on hardwood
moonless fog creeps in
through the garden door
reeking of haunted earth
the ivy tightens imperceptibly
around the facade
wooden handle
choke up
old steel
imperfection pitted
waxen flesh sings
high pitched
and hushed
wipe away the peels
and the ruddy pooling
company will be coming soon

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falling action

dead black bird
laying electrocuted
in the gutter
prismatic swaths eddy
around tossed feathers
paying respects
along sea-wise pilgrimage

a 50-year heartbreak culminating
fires distress flares
into unconcerned traffic
cruel magic in the lack of impact
insects simply alter their path
or devour the mangled animal

larval writhing
endless cycling
causality steamrolls
in spite

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the wrong kind of phosphorous

as a pond in a hailstorm
there is only tumult

sussing the cause

in presence of the topic

made ragged retribution

believing bloodletting
might relieve

running along ley lines

that contact
could ease

a book
a balm

the shelter
of song

like there’s some combination of syllables
or pixels or fucking photons

that would wash new
this gangrenous condition

the unreconcilable contrast
of internal and external

at some point
the hailstorm moves on

the pond stills
and clarifies

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i wanted to create something beautiful
but the colors aren’t singing to me today
instead i shall fold myself inward
and collapse over the scrawl of monochrome
always inserting itself so vehemently
into the background noise of my life
and that word
is growing more hackneyed
and grotesque with every use
like wither
like worm
like blood and glass
heart and scream
and the myriad of variations
that they can swing
like me
as nothing
no thing
no eye
i can see only what lies before me
in the immediacy
and it’s all vindictively fictitious
a joke
the struggle to get beyond
what can be touched

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