Macrocosm Liability

You ruin your body in November, where insects begin to pay
rent somewhere else, where lightboxes rub their hands together in anticipation
of their consolidated return.

There is a police report inside mom’s grey lock box of secrets,
carbon copy dad followed mom to the grocery store. dad accused
mom of fucking someone else
because the firing off inside his arms fired off somewhere else.

Now you’ve reproduced yourself
in the face of a stranger who sits in the café
where I work, writing on his computer. The fern resembles
you, too. There is an upside down universe
where we get everything we want, bees don’t
vanish when we take things that aren’t ours.

Dad remembers cytology but multiplies it by 3,
but this time, he knows how to read a calendar
or the cicadas will trade their watch with his.
And you don’t move one million dollars in a year
selling fractions of evil.

You keep the rug underneath you,
or at least the birds vibrate closer
to earth to keep it spinning-
and smoke signals don’t mirror
motel rooms where the sparrow
cannot keep silent.

Surrogate Hell

 

A man calls
and asks if we have a book that will help him
stop beating his girlfriend.

I put it on hold for him,

he never picks it up.

*
Mom has worked in restaurants her entire life,
it is easier than the alternative.

The alternative is trying

harder.

*
There is a poetry book
girls continue to ask for.

“Excuse me, Miss?
Do you have that book? The one with the black cover?
The one about boys, heartbreak, orgasms?
The one with the poorly written poems?
The one that insults every writer who has ever tried hard?
The one that is the poetic equivalent of the Twilight novels?
The one with poems that go something like this?

 

I loved him on my knees.
Fiercely, he withdrew his gaze from mine
Now the bathtub listens to my lullabies.”
I am laughing at her- NYT bestselling ‘millionaire’ poet.
I am 25, still in undergrad, soon to graduate to ‘poet’ joke of the century.

*
I tell mom
I don’t want to end up like you,

As we sit in the basement on her brown couch,
third cigarette in thirty minutes.

I can’t tell by the formation of the wrinkles
deep in her face if she is glad I said this,
or upset that I recognize her faults.

*
A family of three
not donaldtrumpwhite, walk through
the glass doors.

The child sees a book [ghost]written by trump,
yells EW, donald trump is ugly!

The dad grabs the kids arm, looks at me,
looks around the bookstore,
says to his kid-
you can’t say things like that in public. he’s the president,
you don’t know who is listening.

 

*
There is a man that is looking
for a book,

Sir, can I help you with anything today?

He walks past me, he walks past my coworker
who is wearing a hijab, if that matters. Apparently it matters.

He walks over to colin, asks him for help, says he doesn’t
want help from
women or muslims or blacks, if that matters. Apparently it matters.

*

I am walking to my car
at 1145pm on a Friday
after working a 9 hour shift, and I am tired.

He pulls his car up to me, says
you’re so beautiful, really great, I love your tits, what’s your name? where are you going? you got a boyfriend? you must make your boyfriend really happy looking like that, don’t you?

Ok, great, I’m not interested in that, thanks, I’m going to go home now,
I say.

Fuck you, someone should rape you
and teach you how to take a compliment, he screams,
you’re a bitch, not that great looking anyway, bet your boyfriend beats you, and he should. I’d beat you if you were my girlfriend.

*
Mom says proudly
I VOTED FOR TRUMP
because hillary is a bitch,
wants women to have 9 month abortions,
she has a sex dungeon in the basement of the white house
with obama and bill, can you believe that?

I say
no, I can’t believe it. that is simply unbelievable!
have you fact checked this? snopes? where are you getting your information?
have you ever met a women who would want to have a 9 month abortion?

She says,
george soros owns snopes!
trump will solve it all! All of it.
the muslims will be banned for beheading our children.
america has been taken over by radical muslims, trump was right!

I say,
that is an interesting point, indeed.
do you have any factual evidence you could provide of any muslims beheading our children
on American soil, on any soil?

She says,
well, nana thinks michelle obama
is transgendered!

Girls were burned for less than this in Massachusetts

 


(one)

They carve upside down crosses on their foreheads; the unborns will build a biogenetic tower of babel.
(two)

They live off of antiquated cultural paradigms in the final dimension of hell; everything is an act god if they use a periscope.

(one)

SHE is deficient.

(two)

SHE is an evolutionary microwave.

(one)

GOD will pardon malefactors

(two)

to a fixed point.

(one)

SHE doesn’t meet our

(two)

arbitrary shotinthedark

(one)

guidelines

(one)

SHE will raise her stagnant darlings in hell.

Probability Distribution

 

I.

Your father was born
when the doctors told him
he was going to die.

His terminal existence
made him honest, forced him
to believe in habitable planets
where it would not have turned out
like this.

He was filled with faulty
wiring. It was a mistake with the mechanics
that forced him to give in
and believe in
higher-ups.

II.

You turned on the television
as your father’s body burned
in the background.

There, you had decided
it was not a cosmic
coincidence or an illusion of chance
that you had seen
the universe attempting to make sense
of itself
in the permanently repeating pattern
within the metallic, coarse
covering of the pangolin’s exterior.

Elephants

There are other pieces of land
where you don’t have to be this. The heat is the same
wherever you go, don’t blame the television for making you
a liar. You won’t find yourself in Los Angeles,
haven’t you seen their homelessness problem?
There’s nothing for you
in New York. I remember you
sitting across from me in the fluorescent diner
around one am. You said the waitress looked
like my mother. She did. Mom never left Philly,
look where it got her. Stuck in someone
else’s head.
I shouldn’t have left Philadelphia. Enough people died there,
but people die in New York too.
I find myself counting the miles between you and I, but I lose
count after the first 300.
I hear your voice enough that I think we can distort the time zones, outsmart
the sunset, but it doesn’t work.
Writers like to trick you into thinking words can change
your perception, but we have all said the same thing. Some of us don’t need
a kickstand. I think Brett could have fixed that, but we all have our limitations.
Now everyone knows someone who died
from something. You tell me of the time you found out that elephants
never forget. That’s why we take things that aren’t ours, at least then some body
will remember us.
But you stay three hours behind me, unable to catch up or tie up the difference.
You ask me what it’s like in future. Nine months is enough
to ruin someone’s life.
It feels safer this way.

LAS VEGAS LOST & FOUND

+
I forged your signature-
the A and the ending E
ran into each other, as if they were
proud that we did not share
the same letters that made us up, and pulled
us apart.

There is nothing worse than knowing you will not
be missed.

+
I wished on Yellowstone erupting,
forcing the west to take you in
and then freeze you out.

There are books that tell us of end
times, and none of them mention your name.

+
I took (y)our children to the end
of the desert, found the tallest mountain (peavine peak)
in Nevada.

Your heads could find the end
of the precipice, your skulls pierced like plastic…

There are turtles, otters that have been tricked by you
and your discarded six-pack rings.

+
I hoped parallel lines would combine us,
when instead they divided us.

Euclid said things
that coincide with one another are equal

but he did not argue with you.

Atropa Belladonna

The alignment of your teeth remind them
that you are a function, the final crescendo
for their proverbial spank bank. Off guard
but enduringly on time – You should smile more.

(no thank you. i am fine. nothing is wrong. today is a good day.)

There is a battery in his mouth, his voice
turns. Now it is you – you are the bitch,
should have been agreeable, should have made
cosmetic provisions when younger!

We, the lesser, have forgot that we exist
solely to be looked at. They just do not know better.
Must respond well to constructive compliments!
To blatant threats of violence, ETCETERA.
Must realize that you are only useful
when you are bent over or on your knees.

i have won it all, thinks brigitte

if there is one thing a woman should be, it should be the very best.
b is not the very best woman.

it is a pity that brigitte does not love her husband.
i love you so much, says brigitte.

certainly i am nothing without you, and if i am nothing, then there is not a point in being a person at all.

her husband thinks b is pathetic.
he would be right, if he was not also just like poor brigitte.

it is her husband that laughs loudest because he is safe.
b is not safe.

there is nothing else for brigitte.

You Have Done It (Again)

You let him
subtract us, divide up
our comparisons
and took us apart.

Your husband is a liar-
one year in every ten, you wrote
us down. Now he does it for you
daily, hourly, monthly, continually.
We are better this way, he says, they say.

Would he consider it
a lapse in (your) judgement?

Discarded by someone else,
someone else who failed to see
the void, the absence that he should
not have created.
Now our abscessed estrangement carries
your worn out years,
a pleading spectacle,
a wailing dramatization – look here!

Viscera

I watched them pull you apart-
and gut you like a fish on a silver table
to remove your heart
and turn it over to someone else
who will not carry the same blue marbles
that warned me of the tiny galaxies
inside of you.