Changing Crustaceans

If a giant crab decided
it would fight a lobster,
would there be a betting line,
created by some mobster?
Would the ring of battle
be at sea or on dry land?
What would be the rules
regarding throwing of wet sand?
Would their strategy involve
the gouging of stem eyes?
Would the crab’s quick scuttling
catch the lobster by surprise?
Would they battle to the death
or just accept submission?
I would act as referee,
but just on this condition:
winner gets to crawl away,
tentacles aflutter;
loser must come home with me,
to be served with butter.


A book falls off in fantasy, a cup collides in flight.
We are captured by the solitude of gulls.
Aged wood falls in upon our houses, bleeding seams.
We are crushed by the weight of ancient air.
It is hopeless. Splashed paint creates a wake
upon the walls of the heart. Listless nights seep
through illusions’s blotter, fade into the gaze of stars.
We should die penniless, accosted by fools.
And the cars creep.

Feeding Turkeys

With temperatures near zero,
I try to play the hero,
intent to go outside and feed the birds.
The turkey is most foul,
unlike the sacred owl,
an animal too ugly for mere words.
With face most like a vulture
and raised within a culture
whose habits are to preen and eat and shit,
the animal shows not a shred
of care for humans, live or dead,
and yet, somehow I seem to feel for it.
And so, dressed like a clown,
in jacket filled with down,
I brave the dreaded wind chill like a champ.
They’ll eat their scattered food,
with scrapes amongst the brood,
and then return to their cold turkey camp.

Seasonal Employment

The lackluster Jesus just polishes cars
as the haves all head off to the holidays.
He sprawls in a drift in the guise of a cross
and sings praise of the wage that no money pays.
And a tip of the lid to his curious crew,
and a nog on the egg to odd others.
He climbed up a tree in his break to get free.
Now he calls all the leaflets his brothers.

From The Gospel of the Damned

Bald naked umbrage teeming, garbage fueled, jargon-strewn
half life, led in stages of decay and marked from birth,
lined into corners by sidelong glances and fancy passes
disguised as droplets of glory, emerge to a timeless dawn
of forsaken moments, backward thinking, vine-swinging
retribution, penned by non-existent demons made starlike
by this chorus of wails.
Filch this never-ending youth, planet of hipsters in a cloud.
The cry abounds. Grandfather dirt, mother of oceans,
beguile us with mundane unearthly wisdom, the truths
of startling winter even heaven cannot know. Take hold
the light’s dominion like some stellar dance path’s magic.
Eviscerate the crown volcanic, tragedy’s room mate,
yesterday’s bill of lading for the host of fine rememberings.
Nothing is sacred that cannot fly.
To the end we twirl, shameless in this pivot of doom.

Bagpipe Fossils

Dad was not kilt in the war.
Scotch tape and fine whiskey.
Brigadoon was just a bore.
Highlands are quite risky.
Play on, bagpipe, play,
with your wail and whine.
I’m a Scot and to this day,
I’m drunk but I’m fine.
We’re the ones invented golf.
And we do dig plaid.
We’re a brave and hearty race,
though tend to be mad.
Play on, bagpipe, play,
with your wail and whine.
Haggis is o.k.
I’m drunk but I’m fine.

The Drift

The snow is so deep, it’s starting to seep
into daily life’s very marrow.
With rivers of ice and white pyramids
one oft feels like Frosty the Pharaoh.
It seems every day the forecasters say,
Get ready for two feet of powder.
The drifts look like waves upon a strange sea,
an ocean of frozen clam chowder.
If I were a child, I’d be going wild,
no school and unlimited sledding.
But I’m much too old and aching and cold:
Dear God, please annul this white wedding!

Valentine Daze

Love is massacred by candy,
the best ammunition handy.
Pools of chocolate laced with cherry
mark the ides of February.
One day yearly is the ration
cupid doles out for our passion.
Romance draped in jewels and flowers
rules the world for several hours.
Then, like clockwork, slips away,
bloody hallmark holiday.