• #commanderintweetpuckersforputin

    They met on the internet. They knew right away
    they were made for each other, plain as prey.

    They were the same comix. They liked the same movies,
    especially the ones with the muscles and uzis.

    Vladimir murmured as if in a trance
    the President's got such delicate hands…

    crooning in a postgeocoital calm
    see how they nestle right into my palm…

    Now it's true the Commander's got awesome paws
    They're elegant, delicate, fit for a boss

    who likes them kissed, and sometimes greased,
    but of small things, they're not the least:

    the inside's where he's truly little
    like the space inside the excluded middle

    of one of his whoppers, sluiced from the stump
    to the internet (see hashtag Trump).

    It's why Vlad loves him so, soul-small,
    dissembled, assembled, his Russian doll.


    Commander in tweet is addicted to anger.
    He's addicted us all: his triumph, our rancor.

    When Michelle said go high—read this poem—did I?
    Can satire suck sanguine hope from a canker?... more »

  • A Pot of Tea

    Loose leaves in a metal ball
    Or men in a shark cage steeping,
    Ideas stain the limpid mind
    Even while it's sleeping:

    Ginseng or the scent of lymph
    Or consequences queasing
    Into wide awareness, whence,
    Like an engine seizing

    Society remits a shudder
    Showing it has feeling,
    And the divers all have shaving cuts
    And the future's in Darjeeling—

    Blind, the brain stem bumps the bars
    Of the shark cage, meanwhile, feeding,
    And the tea ball's cracked, its leaves cast
    To catastrophic reading:

    Ideas are too dangerous.
    My love adjusts an earring.
    I take her in my arms again
    And think of Hermann Göring,

    And all liquidities in which
    A stain attracts an eating,
    And of my country's changing heart,
    And hell, where the blood is sleeting.... more »

  • A Pot of Tea

    Loose leaves in a metal ball
    Or men in a shark cage steeping,
    Ideas stain the limpid mind
    Even while it's sleeping:... more »

  • Anaerobe

    Touch swollen tonsils:
    gill slits.
    Inside eyelid: slimelight.
    Cheek: shark.... more »

  • Anaerobe

    Touch swollen tonsils:
    gill slits.
    Inside eyelid: slimelight.
    Cheek: shark.
    Here foreknown
    I've dived
    down dawnless
    microbial snows,
    phosphor blue to blue-
    black, to black.
    I fend
    fish. I find
    the saffron curb
    of   the sulfur vent,
    veering voiceless
    again into the segmented,
    swaying, white,
    toothed tube-
    worm, Time.... more »

  • Civics

    I. Paul's Prandial

    Imagine barbed wire, served alive and writhing,
    spooled upon a fork: Paul Ryan's lunch.
    The sauce is red. It's on his shirt. I think,
    he thinks, this may not easily expunge.... more »

  • Differential Solutions

    When men get to feeling old
    they don't know what to do.
    They gaze around for some elixir
    to fix their thews.

    Mostly it's in women,
    though oftentimes in drinks
    or cars or mere mechanicals
    they'll find their minx.

    Women on the other hand,
    organic from the start,
    solve the problem differently,
    with mind, not heart:

    they root for herbs and balms and simples
    (howe'er their doctors doubt them):
    they stopper them in bottles and they
    talk about them.... more »

  • Epistemology, Dude

    He says beaucoup when he means a lot.
    I guess that means he's polyglot.
    He talks a lot. His streak is blue.
    But I'm not sure it means beaucoup.... more »

  • March

    Sky a shook poncho.
    Roof   wrung. Mind a luna moth
    Caught in a banjo.... more »

  • March

    Sky a shook poncho.
    Roof   wrung. Mind a luna moth
    Caught in a banjo.

    This weather's witty
    Peek-a-boo. A study in

    Blues! Blooms! The yodel
    Of   the chimney in night wind.
    That flat daffodil.

    With absurd hauteur
    New tulips dab their shadows
    In water-mutter.

    Boys are such oxen.
    Girls! — sepal-shudder, shadow-
    Waver. Equinox.

    Plums on the Quad did
    Blossom all at once, taking
    Down the power grid.... more »


    I am Pan Sapiens. I don't speak well,
    And so I write. Some say I look like hell.
    I think that's hard. I think I look like you.
    Pan in, however—never mind the view:
    You've seen it all your life, the diorama
    Stinking with the crowd of us, from Rama-
    Pithecus to poor Neanderthal,
    Who's lost his lisp at last, and, standing tall
    Peers like any fool into my eyes
    Where once upon a time, a wild surmise…
    Now, dip your quill into his pupils' ink:
    It isn't how l look. It's if I think.... more »

  • Physics

    in Riddles, for Mary

    How many suns
    will cross its coign
    before the last
    freeze? What
    spun its point
    on the glass
    breeze? Whose
    airs are loosened
    in the pane
    like miniature
    degrees, where
    breath condenses
    into rain
    among the apple
    trees? Here
    have turned to earth,
    here blossoms may
    attend to birth
    as sun becoming
    leaves; here
    branches seem
    to lead the glass,
    whose scenes compose
    as seasons pass,
    the lifetime, piece
    by piece.... A sphere


    Begins and ends:
    suppose, as glaciers
    drop their catch,
    as memory's
    a ragged seine,
    as grain by grain
    a dead morraine
    the sky is softly
    sifting ash,
    as constellations
    each rescind
    to embers, umbral
    the crown lens
    will surely tear
    to end the long,
    sweet refrain
    of sun to moon
    to sun again,
    of E from M
    and then what breath
    once shaped the pane
    may lose itself
    (we pray) in airs
    our children, too,
    had breathed in time,
    and theirs, and theirs.


    If oracles
    recall in riddles
    in orreries,
    the quantum of
    the apple's arc
    the piper's tune,
    the dancer's turning
    crown of sonnets
    in the dark
    by starlight ground
    between the querns
    spun withershins
    of dawn and dusk
    to wreathe a green
    and weathered earth—
    it's moonshine, love,
    and loneliness.
    Do looney jigs
    unwind the suns?
    Might jugglers drop them
    every one?
    Are seeds resewn,
    or tales respun?
    When pipers stop
    to play the bones
    the very stones
    are left undone.


    To please the Sphinx
    all life unreels
    through black magnetic
    stone-strewn fields
    where pitchblende blinks
    its slow decay
    by alpha, beta,
    gamma, delta—
    time dilates
    and starlight bends
    in gravity
    like roundelays.
    All light, partic-
    ulate, licks out
    one way, in waves;
    electric clouds
    expand in spheres
    whose uncracked shells
    across the parsecs
    and the years
    ring out, shift red
    (like Hell), disperse
    the edges of
    the universe—


    Eclectic quarks
    a dish collects
    to parse into
    initial text—
    exotic sky!—
    a Book of Kells
    whose quirkish tale
    in optical
    if stale effects
    is mirrored in
    the lemur's eye,
    as through the hatchling's
    candled egg
    comes first light to
    the cockerel—
    As Sol dissolves
    against the clock,
    and seismographic
    needles track,
    and continents
    incline to raft,
    sines off to lead
    or raindrops pock
    a full carafe
    to lilypads
    inside the head—


    no wave contracts—
    a tracer's seam-
    less, sequinned O,
    or stoned window's
    What echoes in
    the ears of bats,
    frail globes of light
    colliding back?
    reshuffle shards,
    toc, starred;
    tic, intact—
    let's retrodict
    the apple's fall,
    the reel's hiss,
    the needle's spin;
    the pin-gears on
    the color wheel
    feel artificial
    after all;
    let's kiss the dice
    behind the eyes
    and finish this
    where it begins—
    the empyrean's


    Now ask why seasons
    follow sequence,
    green to red
    or red to blue,
    while life re-seeds
    back through the snow
    like pattern bleeding
    into hue;
    how particles
    of colored sand
    sift back a shaman's
    circling fist,
    as first riddled
    spun out this creaking
    Would sonnets turned
    at light speed
    cooper square
    in their vitrines?
    Or meter's super-
    sonics trace
    a breath against
    a mirrorscape
    where starlight's slow
    as clotted cream,
    and every scheme


    A stich in time:
    where earth has cooled,
    antique tectonic
    shelves awash
    in tepid seas
    whose milky chyme
    has knit such spiral
    as struck off copies
    of themselves
    (O miracle!)—
    and what's occurred
    but stray elec-
    trical discharge
    between some cloud
    and neaping tide
    still arcs inside
    the notochord....
    Who knows when first
    aortic arches
    an ocean's surge,
    or slipped awake
    or stirred asleep;
    how many tides
    had ebbed until
    the tiny seahorse
    heart could leap?


    And here Odysseus'
    dazzled seas,
    his charts, his quilled
    where suns have fallen
    grain by grain—
    according to
    what codicil?—
    like yellow pollens,
    sill and pane;
    where Coriolis
    forces cause
    the cosmic dust
    to curl down drains
    whose gravities
    call back for us
    across the years,
    like sea to rain....
    Where, streaming tails
    of phosphorus
    dead-center through
    the Ferris whorls
    and net-work of
    the window's seine,
    white moons like minnows
    slip its sash
    into the seiche
    inside the brain—


    A seer's odd
    sensation: say
    why dawn should follow
    each saccade,
    Charybdis' widened
    contract again
    from west to east,
    a narrow-waisted
    fall of sand
    or hollow winestem
    once released
    between two fingers
    of what hand,
    its syrinx sounding
    And here the Masters
    of Lascaux
    pinched out an earth
    and shaped a sky
    inside a mountain
    years ago—
    time out of mind,
    we say—just so,
    rebounding echoes
    fade to rhyme
    across an inch,
    an age, and die—


    Of course he's blind,
    whose achromatic
    lenses frame
    his myths around
    a perfect scale
    of azimuths
    and measured time—
    touch the braille:
    a moth wing brushed
    to prism's flame,
    a telescope's
    collapsing torch
    routinely scry,
    or pipers, jack-tars,
    all the same:
    to ask true numbers
    of the night,
    to know the cauter
    of the day—
    one star resolving,
    silver, high,
    another disk,
    another, then
    a cataract
    of viscous light,
    a stack of coins
    against the eye—


    And what attractive
    force is this?
    et cetera—
    full moons inset
    and stacked like plates;
    the planets nested
    flat as spoons—
    a satyr-play.
    Ah, love, instead,
    let's study love;
    it's getting late.
    As geomantic
    may cup the clanking
    cosmos in,
    a sparking censer's
    and fragrant arc—
    as space depends
    on fob-chains which,
    if charmed and real
    are wholly im-
    then we, I think,
    are amateurs,
    and life a mys-
    tery to feel:


    If jugglers are
    and pennywhistles
    cost a dime;
    if planets on
    their abacus
    click back to us,
    tic back, because
    the open skies
    in memory
    are perpendic-
    ular to time—
    one purple night's
    a gemmary
    of all nights figured
    by design
    across our sleep
    in ores as rare
    as any dust-motes
    in the mine
    of empty space—
    an orrery
    whose imperfection
    in the mind
    of which jongleur
    you've married (who?)
    reflects in these
    beriddled lines:


    As ephemer-
    ides of blue
    and red and green
    are held apart
    simple truth
    seen bending through
    the prism's bars—
    as light unrav-
    elling reveals
    such orreries,
    ascending, starred,
    as unify
    into a field
    where dream dilates
    and glass extrudes
    and sonnets draw
    like taffy through
    a compass-needle's
    eye—this chart
    is scanned in light
    of you, of you,
    the physics he's
    accustomed to,
    the gravity
    against his heart,
    whose art again
    begins for you.... more »

  • Physics

    in Riddles, for Mary

    How many suns
    will cross its coign... more »

  • Poetaster in Paris

    Risible, he who at Le Cafe Haute-Coif
    gaffes: gazing absently at a graceful jeune fille
    feels the unnoticed soda-straw nick his nostril,
    steals a glance sideways, scanning for witnesses,
    nurses his drink, and subsides once more into nuance.... more »



    Sick of ink (a professional worder)
    I went into the biosphere
    With two botanizers, a birder,
    And a Leave‑No‑Trace‑Trained mountaineer.

    We witnessed the sacred in several classes.
    They showed me how elevations flatten
    On a topo map. Through fine field glasses
    We confirmed a quantity of Latin.


    Idle by nature, sick of talk,
    I went into the somewhat wild
    With an undifferentiated dog,
    An apple, a gum wrapper, and a six year old.

    The crags scratched our eyeballs. A brace of Quink
    Came burtling out of their whiskets. Old Breather
    Whulphed. It wasn't what you think,
    Exactly. I guess you had to be there.... more »

  • Sawmill

    Snap tempered tooth chips

    sawyer shouts steel in sawlog

    lock engine off slack... more »

  • To Think While Doing a Hard Thing

    Is not always best.

    Still, he can't help reflecting how once
    the grim wince
    came, climbing a rope hand over hand.

    now he is dressed.... more »

  • Words Are the Sum


    As so-called quarks, so atoms before and through
    And after molecules, which too
    Constitute us awhile, pluming... more »

  • Words Are the Sum


    As so-called quarks, so atoms before and through
    And after molecules, which too
    Constitute us awhile, pluming

    Through our slowly changing shapes
    Like beachscapes
    Through a duneless sandglass, say

    (I said, once) — all these
    So utterly forgetful, wiped clean
    As numbers with each new use, lint-free.

    How not so words, which pass our minds
    And mouths and ears from hind-
    Most elsewhere, on their way to elsewhere — why

    Words are the sum of their histories: rose
    And roke and no and blanketing snow.


    So much less LEGO-like, click-
    Click together than like slick

    Colonial hydrozoans tossed
    Together in the copper pots
    Of   predication — all cross-

    Shock and shimmery tangle —
    How can
    Anyone calculate semantic

    Sets so dervishly complex?
    How can we not expect not less but hellish
    Much more than to mean what we say? Then guess:

    How can we better but
    Hope to become in sum what
    We say when we say again love?... more »