The Redbook

From Plastic Tub

 The Redbook from  , 2004.
The Redbook from T.Wilson's Mansucript Portraits, 2004.


Collection of poetry by Steven Adkins (2001)

A letter from Adkins to William Flintrock, August 31, 2004:

The Redbook was written between September 1 and December 28, 2001. Parts 1 and 2 were composed at my apartment at 111 N. Plain St. in Ithaca, NY when I was working at Cornell. My time in Ithaca, to where I'd moved in August 1999, was troubled, and the Redbook reflects this. Although working at Olin Library proved immensely stimulating, my personal life sucked. My girlfriend and I split after 8 years and--this is both chicken and egg--I ended up doing 30 days in a clinic outside of Syracuse. Not that it did me any good. Anyway, the Redbook came after all that.

Part 3, which was completed at his mother's house in Tampa over the Christmas holidays, ends on an optimistic note, anticipating his move to Toulouse, France.

The Redbook begins a nearly two-year cycle of uninterrupted writing, known collectively in AA publications as "the Colored Years." (Stranton, 135)


Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

What’s the Great American Story? Not wanting to be where you’re at

Born on the cusp of the analog age’s 
	Swift demise
Or at least into a world of endings
	(this play)
	drops like slow turds
	and each one a mortifying
	a little less savage, perhaps?
	plod on in a merciless
	refrain compelled
	to tell little daffodil stories
	and crocodile pete poems
	written in wikid collab
	suffering from the disease of
	the Blind King 
	the bubonic bungalow
	(which is a bunghole)
	(which is a firecastle)
	green, sanctified plate tectonics
	of mechanized color
		….it drifts….

a needle stick in the Age of Aquarius
	swift tournaments of demise
	you see,
it’s set up like this
flagrant and fragrant
wisps of willow….

My apartment is two equal-sized
at one end of one is the kitchenette
at one end of the other, the bathroom
the roof leaks and in the summer
it roasts
the carpet is a travesty, the ceiling
tiles marked with brown stains
the drippings of rain through rusted 
tar pebbles and pigeon shit mixed
in for good measure

My rear windows look onto the backside
of a rehab center
it was erected there soon after I got
out of mine
and began smoking pot again

I lasted three months
But I am still dry
I’ve done coke and xtacy once
But I am still dry
I am on smack as I write
But I am still dry

That rehab center is just waiting
there, tapping its’ foot and glaring
across folded arms 

the little dog she and I have had
as a companion for over 5 years
paces nervously about….

mike, my houseguest also moves
hither and yon

“Are you all right?” he asks
“Oh….you look all stressed out and worried” 
“Nah, I’m just….writing”

Reaching back in time thru
			a thirty-year apocalypse
		whisperers in the ship
			every city speaking somehow
		in carbuncular tongues

dying, comatose brains
shouldn’t be aware
the tv glares monotonous
o’er the top
or behind
		the perambulant in layers
all stressed out
even though the plodding
	turd bucket has rolled
over into a bassoon of flowers

some kind of golden urn sexless
sitting astraddle the sky
	waiting in a round ball
	tummy without walls
	an infant forms
		it is the world
	soft and misshapen like a baby’s
		    ….or an egg yolk
Where is the golden paradrop?
	The hominid strut
	How long before that came along?


Poet’s first preenings

this perfect onanism
(this onanistic fervor)

at eighteen or twenty
I visited a graveyard and
sat on a dark tomb
red-eyed from weariness
lit candles
and wrote poem fragments
with Pete Carver

This forced conclave
The hushed expectancy
Anticipation was its’ own reward

but I never produced no
poems from these
	I don’t work in
	(yet I do)

    “bearded tress”
    Pete grabbed the line
    and added a cuticle moon

I resented those
bearded trees
cuz I had not yet
heard the call
just half-assed
opaque moons,
vaguely purple
over Orlando

That perfect planetarium
my sweet terrarium
a humidor for life
painted stars on the dome
offers the illusion of heaven
and the promise of hope

it has a leaky roof, now 
ceiling tiles mottled brown and grey
and that graveyard tombstone
shit was years ago

Gay Encounters

One time in Guatemala I
went to see a prostitute
I had money in my pocket
and valium in my blood
at a nickel a piece,
wouldn’t you?

needless to say I was drunk

I am not a pro, I splay
what I have on the scratchy blanket
and she takes it all

She hikes her skirt
but not until she’s pulled 
me out and slipped on a nightcap
I hadn’t brought one

I got hard enough at first
but it didn’t have the vigor

she got up and left me there 
the picture of dejection
but she came back

I will never forget the sight of her 
Her silhouette in the door
A trio of young cohorts laughing at my 

Their gawking at least
mercifully short:
I needed to pee

I started in one corner and worked
my way to the bed
to show I wasn’t such a 
bad sport left it dry

I met this drunk Guatemalan 
on the street and chatted him
up came on hard inquired
if cock was his thing
grabbed his crotch

if it were only the fear that
the sight of my penis might
shake him out of his drunken stupor
I would have taken him back to my room
but I am a coward
and that sore on his lip was disgusting


I did get my willy sucked on this trip
a French-Canadian Zen
Invited him to plant it in my ass
but alas, he was impotent
gave great head, though
wanted to turn on the light
to watch me cum
fine I said
but he blanched
the light did it I suppose
I had to whack it out

I had by this time sucked
and been sucked by two other
Twice each, even

With Edward we were alone
he dropped to his knees for 
a tease while my mistress
changed out of her coat

another time he fed me wine
and we got to talking
we exchanged blows
without fruition
I asked him if he
wanted to plow me….
did I want him too?
question, alas, unanswered

a flash of naked white ass
as the roommate brings in
the telephone

Even before this
there was my dark uncle
a Dr. Sax of sorts, but with
a guitar
In the context of a threesome
we exchanged a few sucks
But we were more intent on
She was good for it
Come to think of it, she was
our third both times
When Jason came in he saw
us two smoking on the 
Went in for a try himself
at a beckoning
My escapades with women are
more of the same
I’ve had a few threesomes
but this other frontier….
is it the sex I crave
or the yearning itself?

this probably doesn’t get yer rox off
it may not be much in the way
of unbridled confession
but it’s poetry
    absolutely dreadful poetry
but poetry

just renewed my membership in
the anti-hominid league
and just as aliens are angels
angels are aliens
woman combustication a wombat
buddha a fat splat choklit
a choking combat demeanour
thing thug glug jug of clear spirit
‘gainst snow
	let it blow let it blow let it blow

a fauve tumbling of fact	the
convenient theory
		wild gnashing teeth
		the acute edge of a turnip
just riding my spine
an electric arcsaw across the sky
it is a gate to the West

The bow in the mirror
	is an eyetooth
w/which 	width	witch	(she getting a rolla)
	ditch witch	slumpen drunken
strumpet slut
		she reeks of Ripple tiny ripples
in mud puddle face down momma
been a longa humpucker
	I protest
	you come back
	you didn’t come back

Blowback in the cracked mirror
  Der Golem reflected a million limbs
	shooting the moon
stolen from that fat green fuck
	that spectre of limburger
a face so cold and green it glows

I get spam
	it clogs my arteries
processed e-meat
	for fat bankers ploys
the evil desperate
	evil because they are 
win lose indifferent
	the bankers bank
	the coppers cop
	the pyramid prevails

and so I fry spam
in the crenulations of my jigsaw

9.10.01 appx. 10 pm

Hiccups – the giveaway for the
trite the body trite the functions
   which mean everything associated
      from the shit to gold
         the alembic journey
the rarification of the worm
      he bleeds in tiny wombs
that lick like felt-tipped tongues
	incongruous in the mist
	the ravens
	the moonbeam
	the unicorn
	the gold toad a-glitter in the
	glare of the glam globe
it is a slowly melting earth
under a brown chemical haze
	oily the humid sky deposits
	cancer dust storms
	scorpions the size of leopards
the horizon is a wall of flame
small phalli stand silhouette
	eiffel-like girders
	crossed and barking
	sliblets of mournful oil
	clumped and lippling
	sliding in upon itself
a woomp suck the earth clean
the atmosphere has vanished
a spit-take
	a fast bobble
the egg cracks
	and out pops a turtle
the egg is the world
	and the turtle is dead

The side of the world exploded
Debris is falling like leaflets
I hear ambulances
The northern tower seems to be on fire

the tops of the towers
were obscured by the smoke

the creeping horror
no lovecraftian slithering
but tangible stomach
	flailing falling bodies
and for every time I’ve written gleefully of the 
	is a time I recoiled from the expected
“fuck the hovercrafts, this is the future” 

Muhammad Atta
25 grand to fly a missile
Slim Whitman style with infinite

we work on the Napoleonic Code,

Vengeance, a lust for blood
a grimy fist clenching a sword

we need no shields
they are immaterial and
fly thru hot steel chomping
just as hot steel flies:
a slowly moving mote
across a field of curiously
suspended particles
	a steady

Everyone struggles with the immensity of
this horror
grappling within the lymph, the follicle
the gland, the mitochondria
Inside the skin

It’s hard not to take that personally
Visceral skin rinse blasted from pores
like tears vomit forth from eyes
Cleansing tears pushing away coke cans
and jingo
  turkey bones
The result a clarity at times
A limpid reflection at others
quivering and uncertain
	hateful and vengeful
	mindless of what it is you really
	Which is Peace
	Sweet like a honeydew
	melon is sweet

An excuse for a fascist insertion
My heart ached so much I didn’t notice my
ass was bleeding

King and queen of the rubble yard
	soft children rising
	naked and balloon-like
	the sun a dwindling orb
	a besmirched yolk
	dropped onto the frying sky
What terrible infidels are we to
	deserve the nerve gas?

	“Hope we can continue just a little
	while longer.”  J. Morrison

	Me too, Jimbo!

The new Rome the post-hermeneutic Sodom
	flags ripping the wind
	into a hawk’s shriek
	stone pillars, lead, sulphur
	frankincense, crushed dinosaur bone
Ahh these values are less real than
	jihad and holy vengeance
Even the Church of Satan is calling
	for blood!

Inspect, operate, dissect
	<vermin, dogmeat, pus>
nonsense, jingo the lot of it

On this day it was revealed to me
that Osama bin Laden is God
and a woman
both at the same time

	(leading a carcass into the tissue

There is a past
but there is no future

this scorched earth
where our hearts –
two drunken warlords
parade each other’s soldiers
thru the filth in the streets

and the inside of my mouth tastes
like chemicals applied to metal

It hasn’t stopped raining for days
and finally, my ceiling has collapsed

I can look into the corner and see
the sky

Slowly I creep back into addiction
Soft balls of light dancing in
nauseating unison

And everywhere talk of war and fear
New era of disease and discomfort
and no dissent

Just jingo and the lockstep
The groupthink terror and the drummers
beat as one

The war drummers the sick
cavalcade who will promote but
never enlist

Guarding the skies of Texas is
as close as these warriors will ever
get to the wars they promote

Open-ended and ill-defined, angry
images to become objects of
hatred and icons of vengeance

All around us are causes
like so many cast away dollar store

We poke out our eyes and wonder
where it all comes from
These discombobulate mutterings of
mullahs and malcontents,
murderers, martyrs….

Of course it troubles me

My tears now, docile, entrenched
the lines of many frowns the
scrabbling holes of soldiers

And we, two warlords
Our feud quiet amidst the roar of
greater wars
Of dying empires of ideas bloated

All unfair all material witnesses

Mike will go to jail because of
a liar and a judge that will 
refuse to believe a man accused
may be innocent

I will only be saved by
love in the midst of it all

But that love is gone baby
A tigress has eaten all the ferns
and puked up the stalks

A husk like a heart that has
been peeled

Boiled potatoes, rheumatism, ice
cream and sperm, dog-eared copies
of Das Kapital used as kindling….

Where am I going with this one?
I can’t bring it all back

We, too, are beveled and charred
No commerce will again take place
between us

Redolent around him half-remembered dreams
They hang in the air heavy
like cinnamon or musk

Sweet tears fall into dust
Magnified from the infinite small
exploding into ancient smells of a wealth recovered
forever tainted  with the grease of thieves

How could he have lost it?
What tragic distraction
Distracted the watchmen?

His paper heart dipped in vinegar
yet still stinks of vomit and undisclosed betrayals

Redolent around him the musty loss
he carried it for years in a wet paper bag
and was surprised when the bottom fell thru
somewhere near the tracks

A gift left for bums
Who will mock it and throw it on the fire
he didn’t deserve it anyway, they’d say
And they’d be right

gonna go meditate
in an upstate kuti

gonna go shoot my sks
500 times

“Falling thru cracks
Falling thru sky
Sunbeams in the form 
of opaque yellow triangles
Shards of glass exploding up the concrete
each splinter a drop of blood
seeping into the earth
A giant sump of benzene
And potato chips
Underneath the asphalt
The perilous foundations
of treasured buildings

A gift of pancakes
Inscribed w/a prophetic
vision of doom
What would you do if 
they showed you the door?”

Apuleius you comical fuck!
Thanks for showing me the Way….
Who would have thought it?

My problem….
one of them anyway
is that my religious impulses
fluxuate wildly between idolatry
and mysticism
and more problematic why have
them at all?
my cross may be rosy 
but it’s a cross after all

that these dusky stalwarts
have taken my beloved Queen’s
crescent and turned it into
a scythe….it angers me

may you open your eyes to
our sufferings
however deserved
our memory is dim in Mary
but at least we have her unveiled
we don’t beat your image
and imprison ourselves
in reckless denial
may our devotions tonight
be a small voice
like a gentle breeze among the reeds
a plaintive whisper
for peace

we parade each other’s wounds
thru the street
our hearts two drunken warlords

you look at me across the dustcloud
my mouth like chemicals
applied to metal

<our soldiers gaze at one another
they have hunger in their lanky arms akimbo
and their time-stretched shadows>

I miss you so much, but calmly
I am tired

Servants of Dionysus

I set up the targets.  Warm up
at 85 yards

When I get to the target I’ve just 
shot at
I haven’t hit once

Then I realize I’ve set my sight for 850
Not 85

So I get back and realign
Decide to plink the bucket on the
(from my place of work coincidentally)
I score perfect – well, all my bullets 
have pierced it –
Then from the desk to the target
then back to 85 yards
I fire off about 90 rounds in an
hour and a half

John is my supervisor at work
I am on his farm
My relationship is that of friend
and somewhat bedeviled underling
But that is John.  Dr. Marmora
Fulbright scholar
Farmer.  Vineyards that after lunch
we tend.
Layering.  We take the vines of
healthy plants and bury them
in a small trench 8” deep
1’ foot long as wide as the pick
Then the end tied to the wire and

I retire to a cabin in the woods
An Amish shed really, but decorated
with items as adorable as they are

I tend a fire and think about
Isis and Dionysus.  When I was on
that tractor I was his servant
I made the work holy

In the cabin I jerk off into my
sleeping bag and listen to the
sounds of night….the wind,
strangle cracklings, a dog barks
Once in a while the dim hum of a jet
A strange throbbing pattern which may
be a bassline
The Redneck, I’d assumed

Now it’s me in the cabin.  After
a baffling loss of a pack of matches
which I hunted for high and low for
over an hour.  Gone
baffling.  Wood spirits I thought

The wind, Lyle Lovett gospel on
Sunday, gunshots in the distance
This is my church
Nature, Music, Struggle

I am not the wounded party
	A stag, stylized ink on glass
Curving like a crescent moon
	Its bottom tip producing
Tiny bulbs of blood

	WHAT mystery
		this golden trunklet

	BANAL and lowing
	the COW of the night
	stuck on the moon

	and darkness lowered, 
	let’s sleep

We partake of each other
cake portions squared-off and

the distant samurai

speckles of light
speckled trout

and sirens
my aural hygiene
clogged vassals these ears
in need of a good candling

One candle ate the other candel
and the bull is the father of the serpent
and the serpent is the father of the bull

the nuclear suitcase

a delicate state of paranoia
sharp as knives
as gilded as a lily
in perfect unison
with the Sea Accord of ‘47
a harmony
veiled upon the sound of
clinking salt rocks distilled
from air
poured into the wounds this salt
nuclear Fear, anxious lonely
random accident, please not

the mass death
or the epidemic
give me the benefit
of a long prosperous

so it comes down to that
anonymous please
votive devotion
a fair exchange
gimme shelter,
soteria, shekels
I’ll be humble
tonsure myself

golden trinkets of doom and remembrance
note to self:  destroy this notebook

a basket of snakes
in a fortress of sieves
softly sifting sulphurous stones
gold from within balls of mud

self-destruction high 12
with a backup dancer
or a security guard
caught by chance
in a collapsing tower

a secluded stormcloud
a tempest in a teapot
the glass globe of his combat helmet
fish swim by his eyes
the water a perfect fit

lay down with this imperfect beast
draw blood no
draw breath then collapse in a shambles
of heavy guitar riffs
and thund’rous drums
god, it is only a rock sock
it covers the foot parked 
in the tunnel of his throat

grey listless day
last workday before the freedom’s ring

and she called me today
soon after noon
to cause me to wonder
a pre-emptive strike?
to see if my friend had
filed a report on some
painful thing?
and feeling it out,
finding nothing,
she is mute

SUNday is not
she has not been in for hours
methinks some lie afoot

VURT lying on the floor
a soft thermodynamic
an exchange
none too gentle
stepping through the
doorz that are opened

We cannot win this war
Within ourselves
This hysterical barking
  of polystyrene heads
  polystyrene molded like wooden
  shrunken heads
A radio peeps out from the past
there is no hyperkinetic changeup

the kids don’t dance
they circle like sharks
their cheekbones cleave thru the
cigarette smoke

a waft, here and there, of vapor rub

there is more menace than abandon
but nonetheless, the event must be
reckoned a success

the slime on the walls
the plywood disaster waiting to happen
the swift coagulant

she is angry, always
and I am desperate
like a thief is desperate

and the moment
now and again
when the sun sees fit
to poke out from beyond the clouds
and illumine my room Autumnal
wan but noble
a hard edge to the patterns of fingerprint and
dirt on my window

this slim reminder of life outside
keeping the plants alive –
		dismal dismal
		what I leave in my wake; ANTI-MIDAS
I turn GOLD into SHIT!
	dripping like specialty shop gold candles
		thru my blood-stained digits
onto the tarmac of my brain
	cooled by wind and speckles of high mountain rain
	  a camera panning away in the Andes, quickly then, from a
gargantuan twins
kining on the globe
a 3D rendering, in ink
manifest slowly the
elongation of desire
it forms a tusk
a sleeper image of a captain
circumnavigates the globe
the salt will never forget
	absolved	somehow
the shadows in the wall form the shape
of a priest – no – with the 
mitre he must be a bishop!
they are handing out slips
	of forgetfulness

it calls across the mud hollow all
narcoleptic thick sweaty air
warmth, them

ah, the wishful thinking!
the snow thumps into earth soon
the air cold
woodsmoke, even, upon occasion
Never never never
I do not get a visit

I have put all my eggs in one basket
I gave it all up for love but love
gave up on me
our allies
	hung on the frontlines
		dying in prison
		slow hurtling
		swift myrtle
If I know Tampa, I’ll be back
Cigar City w/trilingual fortitude
	cobbled streets that useta ring
with the clang of horseshoes
caught steel of trolley track
Smells of wood and yella rice
murmurs votive thru incendiary cracks
ashen light on the solitude of 7th
quiet humid haloes of 7th
this was when, ’87?
It was an entirely different world then
Most of the shops were empty
Those that weren’t were….gritty
Punks & hippies
Squats abounded
This was when the El Goya was the only club around
the flood was yet to come

the 90’s came
swept away the Emerald
Ybor Pizza and Subs
Grotty places with dark unused corners
Mildewy smells
Before new tile and neon….

Sweet Charity –
	ah there was a joint
Not one but 2 Santeria shops
	the one on the west end survived a while
	is it still there?

That nebulous zone north of Ybor
that oozes unexpectedly back into Tampa
it seems to exist independently
Poor wooden homes about mysterious
groves which seem deep but
where could the deepness come from;
on a map there’s only a grid

Tampa is a shifting tectonic
definition is hazy
vast and lazy and sparsely governed
it is a very oneiric place
I can hardly wait

My memories of you, Florida
are bathed in warmth
and scented vaguely with
oleander, citrus, cut grass….
there is a cigarette-filled
beer bottle or two, yes,
but mainly I think of swaying trees
silhouetted against a deep blue sky
or, westerly, an impossible profuseness
of clouds – but there they were:
	One could see clear to Hawaii
	reflections of gold upon the clouds
	sunlight beamed back up from a smiling Pacific

Pacific.  Peaceful.
	And in Deland, I lived on Sans Souci 
Too bad I got the notion, that
futile, naked gesture….
Frozen into a lifelong pose
A dapper nose
A change of clothes
A cold imp following a Gemini shackle
Cold tackler melting in action under
the illumined wing of the sun
stuffed but incontinent
Jealous of yet in contempt
Can it yet be tempted to behead
this glamorous oxymoron
(which is a bad way of saying
that beards, mandatory, win out over
no beards, mandatory)

A mountainous terrain
the khyber pass
more than an excuse to mime a monocle
and adopt a phony Edwardian tongue
this is no imperial joke

somehow, decadent
lobbing from afar the delicious platitudes
of the overfed

we send them bombs of choklit
piñatas that plunk down all delicate
crak wide
reveal treats

sweet tooths.

[section omitted] 

We know there is no paradise for murderers
Absolution under the veil that is a cascade
a veil so to speak
over a rocky abutment which is the brow
	of her perfect beauty
	vaguely “of the east”
  but only at this angle
She speaks gracefully and drops healing
  Water from her hand;
there is a slice of melon
of honey	the darkness
the crescent glistens in
the dew
this reign of tears
the collision of fruit held in the hand
and water over the face
causes futile explosions
	fluttering limpid in idle waves
	upon the floor

love that mysterious crocodile
a floodlit balloon
upon a pterodactyl stage
rampaging and serious
gamboling and heffalumping
flying off motorcycles
  in a desperate grab
  for the wrong side of the edge

ONTO the floor!
Pumpkin pie in a diner full of tiles
and each one a tiny guard
placed at the holes to the core of her heart

spiny forested leprous
Louisiana stinking of crocagators

and I made those holes
sloshing thru the swamp
falling thru the decay
reaching for a cuticle moon
cleft finger slipping grasp
a fork in the treeline
  bearded trees looking on
as I fall

I don’t need her in the same way
but I can’t take the cold indifference
shut out and then the “oh really”
upon complaint
the exaggerated artifice
the surprise gestures that
say “you expect too much”

it’s as if the lone ranger
looking toward tonto
under the hail of flaming arrows
says: “We gotta get outta here!”
and tonto, placid, says:
(he has known this all along)
“Whaddaya mean we, white man?”

The film stops on her hand as
she leaves the counter
the sound of wind and ships rigging
a distant emptiness of sky
dissolves into green fields
Badalametti-type score
There in the grass
A chipped wooden statue
here a burn, there a split
garlands, candles
halves of oranges, incensed cones
A cup of water 
A seed or two
That wooden statue is me in the position
the film caught me in when you left
unsurprised, grim, relieved, desolate
je sui desolé – I’m sorry
and I am not motivated by
guitar weeping nor Frail memory
tears don’t come I tell ya
I’ve got no more right

I have abandoned my chips
No more time outs or explanations
I can't hold it in my hands and examine it
She moves
The tube that connected our heads is severed
at her end
She is free of it 
it leads from me to….
An appendage waggling in space that is a glum
A thousand frogs may fall from the sky
the intelligent bald man may utter truth
but don't let those regularities stifle
the drunken meander
or the gee, golly whiz-bang
you are off to see your family anyhoo
sister, crazy Negro woman
ex-husband a Baptist Preacher
boyfriend a loving thug
crackers all and salted earth

Mum what to make of her sad life
childhood full of war and Victorian discipline
The child out of wedlock and flight into Empire
Husband in Vietnam a 22-year commitment to country
-- then death
Two drug-addled kids and the man in her life….
You may call it Oedipal if you need to
I can't avoid that pointing Finger
As much as the finger is a wag 
non-malicious but wrong
I simply do not like the fellow

Have no more time for drunken agape
Fat lettering, dying modernist architecture,
global war.  This is my world,
So be it.  I can see why she
left me!


It is the pen that rules the hand
the flow of its' ink the crucial tongue
Merciful, I've stumbled into Fortune

	When doppelgangers meet

	magic pen floweth like the
	River of  Forgetfulness
in tha bizniss
	tha long stork
	become forgetful of prophecy
	throw of the yoke of self-consciousness
	throw in a scrap of tin for the
	    war effort
	false girlies
	    wax chimpin’
	dining on the sideways smear of light
	hard-edged and uninspired

there are no little explosions –
a bad thing in this case
those little explosions moments of joy
or creative bliss to punctuate the
dull drone
As if we are still sloughing off a Decade
10 full years of anxiety and abuse
she a foreign thing

there is pain so I indulge
myself in the wicked pleasures of pimpery and
   drug peddlin’
ha.  please take that meta 4 ickly
    nothing but a coffee
    who must be stopped
    look @ the carnage
	    the thin smoke
    semi-opaque and tan
    eyes like molded plastic
    moving on a slow wheel
    in front of a pediform scrim
    A sky-blue box and the
    rays of hope
	Amen Ra – it is a candle
	in a tincup
    I deserve a lashing for my poor
    behavior @ the puppetbox
      Surly and discontent
      spread malicious vibes of solitude
      for a manual that has become
      a meaningless haven
      but still a haven

A man imagines himself one way
Is seen entirely different by another
In most men in most cases
This is the plainest of Truths
One thinks of Kansas
Fields of Wheat
Honest pursuits traded with 
leathery hands
A scarf blown in the wind
Sideways & ethereal
(The Poet has a tendency to catalog)

What are my characteristic misspellings

the nuclear suture
to the can of worms

let’s hope that couplet’s wings are
the heavenward march of bugbears
Wanton, in the wind
appointments made, appointments broken

eh, whaddufuck?
he shrugs his ragged shoulders his
Abe Lincoln coat

Hell-Fire 2000 the Arabs are right
We are decadent and depraved
A pal, Young Lord, offered to Pimp
his ole lady for 100 bucks

A golden Hottie, she
Aside from Brutality all is game
Shaved beauty

This was all brought on 
By my simple “I need to 
get laid, desperately.”
He doesn’t need the money—
we hang out on his sailboat—
it’s about the power
She gets off fucking an unknown—
blindfolded as she’ll be
I get laid
He gets to tell her ex post facto
He’s pimped her

So much for honest pursuits….

We are hungry ghosts of time
Amblers of space
turning ceaseless orbits
	around one another
the orbit gone wide
	I Pluto-like
a vast distance
	cold black oblongs
	smeared in the rainbow of bending starlight
	space rubble
	illumined like plankton on fire
the undersides of the sphere heavy
	and damp today

	It never, ever drifts
	dismal satellite blinking
	set course for nowhere

	Adam 12 and Pogo strips
	a penis
	and a brown lump of moldable clay
	(don’t bother looking)
	Then, there, at the
	edge of things
	We realize we’re really in the
	thick of things
	Skulls and heads mostly
	Pretty then, in demeanour
	wickedness implies girth
	and a seat in Parliament!

On a machine in Hal’s Deli:  CROWLEY’S MILK

Rocked in gorgeous heffalump
We are eating spinach from tins
Disaster food

One became the uneasy friend of another
that larger, southern state
lush and fundamental

this continent is sewn with blood
Its’ furrows a brow in grief
the war was everything, but civil!

she was staring at me
a jaw as square as cinderblock
a patina of grease on her maw
she tossed a chicken bone across
her shoulder and giggled
the sun broke thru the clouds,

27 minutes later we were engaged
in connubial bliss

I played the Sun
She played the Moon
A delightful curvature of numbers,
fish and interlocking fingers

If I now enter the River of Lethe
then let me hold on to this inscription
of memory and laughter

I got hats
Flashes of Insight
Shard-like triangles of thought
Pushing forward like fast mountains

And that little turdling
smelling peachy
rubetine and mellow

Somehow any minute now
seems like forever
and the cold banal plate
of my existence is a dishrag
soiled and grey

the air is cool and damp
it is 3 o’clock the air is grey
it is really 1:11 and the air is
I imagine it otherwise, nonetheless

No dox in hand
Trip to Gotham an impenetrable wound
I would like to see comrades
Bust out in jigs upon concrete
but the deep hollow cough
and the rickets inhibit me
anthrax spores thick in the air like balls of snow

let’s hope not
the image of carslik roads glisnin’
a chord struck
a casual hum
an inflection brings him to the point of dissolution

I’ve tried
been patient
Waited for the stumbling fragile word to come
it didn’t

So now, when I raise myself up
like a digital falcon
sharp as 12 knives to cut you out of me

What selfishness I will exhibit
as always
petty to the end
after all what are 8 years?

and when these bleeding rednecks
pick themselves up after the blast
there ain’t gonna be no he’ll to pay
there’s just gonna be hell

She doesn’t want anything
that’s just it
(except maybe for me to go away)
all the experience accumulated
burn it all

that curious personal weather
we each have our own Michelle
(that is a her-a-cane
	bearing down on Cuba) 

in common cartoon panels
black clouds overhead indicate dark moods
a connection ‘twixt the body and barometer

a big wide view of the earth
as if from a plane
or an animator’s pen
bright hues and sharp edges

It is a memory
a lovely old hymn
and a strange variety of cat

a subcutaneous roar:
an insistent train making its way thru town
a few blocks away
the news is always bad

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

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