Saturday, November 21, 2009

Svelte Punk Chic

     I was immersed in the early punk rock scene for a period of time and experienced firsthand the inner devastation of fringe living.  Underground love left scarred hearts from sacred youth gone all bat-shit in a revolution against culture, politics, themselves and ultimately, nothing.
     There is a trilogy of verse from my writings at that time that circled around a couple of friends and their 3am confessions to the cave wall-dirty, pretty things from an unsentimental tribe.  Light a smoke, take a third shot of Jack and listen to a few notes from the dank night.


Wearing svelte punk chic
she was tearing down things
and her things
she would erect

Her toxic "I"
reigns constant-
poisoning caution's approach
in alteration to the host
and her eyes twitter mean.

"Bitch!" "I" cries;
"Whore!" "I" tumbles;
"Slut!" "I" turns to-
oh woman,
immersed into.

Yet, she is not her lover;
just a random in happenstance
melodious in sin expressed
or harshly-
hardly a bother to please
or surpass
in expectation of pleasure
to her promise splayed out
amongst her discarded

"I" had/she
has no
lying there,
dirtying her push
as he retracts
and readies plunge-
unworthy, un-savored, unsane-
she reels in the catch
her toxic,
toxic "I"



     the pretty girl run like melting snow
(a man fall like the sleet).

His woman
    has the heat (of an animal).
       He breathes
           like the hissing air of ash
              (from marihuana).
                  Passion garrotes her kiss
                      (like a hangman).
                          Their sweaty eyes
                              feed thirsting (for breath).
                                  A smoking silhouette
                                      of love's withdrawal
                                          (from flesh).
                                              A pang of nothing
                                                  left (in its streaks).
                                                     The moral diaries
                                                         their heads support
                                                            wane (and freeze).
                                                               Faith bathes
                                                                  in the sweat
                                                                     on gravestones
                                                                        (its death).
                                                                           The end

                                                                                     A pretty girl
                                                                                        is like
melting snow
     (a man is like the sleet).



Tries to rule
Her Saturday
As she circles his party
With latitude for breathing-
Lust coiling serpentine
In her eyes' needy visage;
A stare war arises
In jaded,
Grainy remembrance
Of love's burning gone
And heart crushed
Like cigarettes:
Soled out
Like a snake,
Her body
Like a snake,
She did animal things
And then lay in the shade;
A rest
For the reptile
Of loneliness within
Curled comfortably
After miking from Man-
His slivers creating the darkness,
Teach her
To feed on the darkness,
And it sleeps
At her feet
Like faithful blackness
And her Saturday
To his


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Blind Man's Cat

     I once assisted another poet on editing her work for publication. She was attempting to put a sense of order into what to her was a collection of disorganized and disparate poems. They were all in her voice but she was so close to them she could not see their relation to one another in context of her vision.
     In reading the pieces I not only heard the music coming from the pages but also saw a subtext buried inside the words. Once I became a companion to that subtext I arranged the poems in my head into what to my ears and eyes was a linear theme that told a precise tale.
     She then allowed me to cut and paste her babies into this thematic context. That was a remarkable level of trust (ask any writer), especially as the finished edit created quite another animal than the one she had raised. I had been talking out loud like an inspired madman about my thought processes and the subtext I was following throughout the whole procedure. When I finished I read the book aloud from the first word to the last verse.
     She was shocked and quiet and silent for a long time. Then came the tears.
     I initially thought she was crushed at what I had done. That was far from the truth. In her estimation, that edit had not only streamlined her vision but told the story she had been attempting to tell in a way she had never visualized and could never had done. She was wrong.

     Her book was all there, story and everything in completion-there was nothing missing and nothing added. I heard her music and I formatted the playlist of her album. She was thankful but I was even more appreciative because it was a beautiful experience that taught me more about trust and editing than I could ever have learned on my own.
     Later on, she looked at some of my work. She pulled a forth a poem I had been stuck on and commented that to her it was an experiential description of sound. That was far from what I was attempting but it forced me to look at my lines with new eyes and listen further to what they were saying. As with her, I had been so close to it I could no longer hear it, but it was there...singing low.
     With new ears I finished that piece and many times since I think of lessons learned and music unheard. So Jolie, wherever you may be...this one is for you:


Her sound
     seeps syllabic meter
               auditory images,
her paws print
     cushioned percussion
               ear cymbals preening-
all catwalking forward,
          then rising;
               heard symbols uniting,
Her beat
     and talk
          anticipating tigers
               or kittens
in a steady,
     measured tone to
          make verb
               or phrase
to a felt imploding
     sound wave-
          her  v-i-b-r-a-t-i-n-g  metaphor;
               his braille purr she sings.