Moon Shine and Lemon Twists

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A collection of poems in a variety of styles, exploring a variety of subjects. If you're here, you know what I do.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

A language gone to hell

When the devil speaks in your ear,
his whispered words appear scrawled
in red letters on the inside of your eyelids,
the same shade of red as his leathery skin,
red from being out working in his fields
under the noon sun for all eternity.
This way, if, in his mind, he’s misspelling a homonym,
like “your” when he means “you’re”,
as in “your not strong enough to withstand me”,
you can call him on it.
And when god speaks in your ear
his whispers also appear
on the inside of your eyelids,
but in stark, bright white.
They look like stars strewn across the sky,
as if they were so many monochromatic
Pollock paint splotches on a black canvas.
But you can’t read them at all, because god speaks
in Zodiac-like shapes and symbols, not words,
so you could never tell him he spelled something wrong.
The devil, he wants you to know
what he intends to do, he wants you to be aware,
and to be afraid, to live in dread.
So he tries to communicate in your language,
he listens to you, and also learns what he can
from online self-study courses at the University of Phoenix.
But even as clever as he is, human language is foreign
to him so he struggles, like you would if
you tried to learn to speak Dolphinic or Chimpanzee-ese.
Conversely, god doesn’t care
if you understand his intentions or not.
It makes no difference to him
if you are aware of his desires or plans.
The union requires that he post notifications
in public places as well as sending individual
communications under certain specific situations.
But there is no requirement that the notifications
and communications be in any specific language,
hence the zodiac symbols and various inscrutable miracles.

So, one in each ear would just about blind you.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Nightmare Hunters

If you’re looking for hints of nightmares forgotten,
You should search in shadows ,
In the underbrush, that’s where they hide,
Growing in the fecund earth on the forest floor.

Shine your light over there beneath that rotten log, see,
There’s one over there, its eyes glowing red.
Don’t touch it with your bare hand, you’ll never wash the smell off,
That’s what the leather gloves and the net are for.

They take root in the ooze and the muck.
Each one grows from seeds planted in sleep,
Each a different story from a mind unaware,
Like a shout from a mute madman in a hurricane.

Foggy swamps and bogs are the best hunting grounds.
A guy north of here found a rich patch in the elbow of the river.
Man, he lived off that one spot for a year.
When it finally ran dry in the heat of August, he curled up and died.

The worst thing that can happen is finding one of your own, of course,
Like Merle did over in the valley below Blue Spruce Hill.
Merle hasn’t spoken a word from that day to this,
And his eyes have that hollow, dead look.

But the money is good, and times are tough, so it’s worth the risk.
Besides, what’s the alternative?
If you’re not hunting them they’re hunting you,
And unlike you, they don’t sleep.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Millions of white paper fish

Eyes open on a foggy morning to a sleep-fogged vision
Millions of white paper fish falling from the sky
I stepped outside and tried to gather them up
There was a carnival midway in my backyard
Three planes went down behind the Ferris wheel
So I ran for shelter in a booth at Woolworth's diner
But the Woolworth went out of business years ago
They have no more coffee or blueberry pies
Back outside on a bench in the park in the rain
I thought I heard you singing a song with another girl’s name
But you were sleeping beside me on the bench the whole time.