Lavender

Who would have thought
the boys they gone out shooting
twilight
lilac
and foam burns
off crisp
Who could have known
the boys they gone out shooting
on windy days the black
oaks the madrones
the someday us too will be
vested in the field
in the wind
and in the thick of it
Who would have thought
the spiral sound
the ricochet
the boys they gone out
in the back forty nine
they gone down flat
vested with an arrow
with a flag pole
pink as a ponderosa
the clicking of beetles
the boys gone down flat
chested with an arrow
with a flag pole
pink as a pine needle
the clicking of beetles
Who shoulda told them boys
to wedge themselves tween
the axe and the cabin
the clicking of the beetles
gone down flat vested with an arrow
with a flag pole pink


Sometimes I think about Oroville

Like a tweaker panning for gold
in the dead drought dessicated crick like a slot machine about to give way

Like the white cessna stingray
in May failing at low altitudes
at seven in the morning

Like a gang of deadeyed palepasty zombie kids
twitchpicking their way thru
a market that doesn’t give a fuck

Like the nine gram rule
that kept everyone out
and everything in

Like using a helicopter
to pinpoint where to falsify
your thousandth anonymous complaint

Like packs of water bottles lined up
several hundred yards away
who knows how many rounds of .308

Like two dudes getting a handy in an old Chevy
by a tweakjawed crackwhore between them by the tracks

Like how they always wondered if it was Sour Diesel
& one of their corrupt colleagues got caught
moving stolen packs back east

Like that real raw look on their face
everyone has from the brutal heat beating down
through the toxic valley air

Like winning 10k at the casino
getting drunk and dying crashing into a river on your way home
the cash floating downstream



Round house

I used to love
to kick things
as hard as I could
like people
on the side of their heads
if they didn’t move
I remember the feelings
of taking a foot to the face
the pain shock & humility
the deafening pressure—the ringing
to destroy between a helmet and a chest piece
the barriers between us—the rules governing
our moves but not our emotions—
I’m reminded of this at the hip
with every step I take
toward my grave


The moment I left New York and never returned

Not that long ago
I woke up furious
at the blue light blinking

I wasn’t pissed that the txt
was from my sister—but that
you thought you could get to me
through her—I didn’t even read it
immediately after reading your name
that I buried in my past where it belongs—

The only thing I could remember
other than those cold dead eyes
that I wish I would have seen sooner

Was when you took me on a bus ride
I can’t remember if you lied about job hunting
or this was part of your reinactment
on how to make love stay
you knew it like you’d done it a thousand times
the same route that would be flooded
with a bunch of schoolboys
in uniform all looking almost incestually identical
& you turned to me and said emotionless
that it was your fantasy


Gem

The first time we met
dirtyblonde curlyhaired locks
with the widest ocean blue eyes
I may have ever seen just beaming
childlike and heavy

You chainsmoked camels
like you were nervous, excited,
or just happy to be talking art
which was plastered all over every inch of your walls & ceiling

The passion was there but the style & mastery
had yet to be developed—

You were from Jersey and couldn’t say orange,
always looking like a fairy with your thrift store dresses & jewelry—wearing daisys in your hair—you would giggle like a jitterbug at everything and it was contagious—we loved you for it—except maybe some of the other girls

It was just who you were—I remember you took a class
on how to weave baskets with a bunch of old ladies—it was a dying art soon to be forgotten you said—
we’d drive to the beach or chug wine out on the kayaks on the Manatee just shooting the shit watching the sunsets looking for the green flash—
I’d see you on rollerskates at Sonic smoking blunts in the back
waiting to get off so we could listen to the Pixies
& smoke more blunts or sometimes floral smelling goo—

We didn’t know what we were doing
you said you saw circus bears sorta dancing in the ceiling
and I’d really never seen anything more
than a cloudy veil of flowing golden faces at that point

I was never really attracted to you either 
but we fucked one night when we were drunk anyway just for the hell of it—
pissed your ex off when he found out—my friend at the time—you must have told him deliberately—he told us
we didnt know what we wanted, hell, he was right

You would talk about your family problems
and although it seemed kinda shitty we didn’t know
just how bad it was for you—you befriended Gypsy
this old crackhead in the jungle behind kmart who used you to get her things yet you adored her for a while

I’d been gone five years off and on since then
when you visited Amber and I in Santa Cruz during your road trip across the states
the jealous cunt hated you for being an old female friend
and I hated her for that at the mexican restaurant
where we both began to realize the dude that you were with
was a bit of a wingnut
you wanted to camp in a park
I asked if you were ok or needed a place to stay
you said you were maybe going to Mexico with him
and I sometimes almost hate myself for letting you go 
but what the fuck was I supposed to do?
Yo
u went to Ireland and hung out with a bunch of old dudes for a while you said—I could see it on your facebook—which I never did—not that I didn’t want to

Like a year after I got a call on my phone late one night
still with a Florida number after all those years
I would change it not long after
But it was my brother—not really—who
I’d not seen in forever having gotten lost among the hedgewalls of my life closing in on me again—
he said he’d been trying every combination of numbers until it worked for an hour not even knowing if it would be the same—he was out of his mind—said he knew she was crazy, but not that crazy, you know? 

Shitfaced & alone sitting in the upstairs attic-loft of my shack in Scott’s Valley with a Sierra Nevada and a spliff is how I found out you left your car burning on that bridge—I miss you, I wish, and I wonder all the time


Brittany

You were the tallest girl I ever fucked—
that alone stands out to me thinking back
among the sea of deviance like a peak in the waves

You must have been my height
or just slightly shorter—I think we even
did a side by side just to see back to back

I remember those legs
but I can’t remember your face now
other than the way I would catch you staring at me from across the room

There at someones party with your semidwarfed boyfriend
in Sarasota from outta town—Tallahassee maybe,
you guys seemed so close

I don’t know why then our hands found
their way into each others
while he was supposedly passed out right beside us—

There was no stopping it at that point—
we were too young or something—too magnetic—
nothing else in the world had any meaning left—

We had been born to find each other
sought out of height—out of hair—
out of the ringing in our hands down into your soaked booty
shorts

I had to taste it—
and soon my cock growing into belonging down in your throat
was no longer enough—

To fuck wildly trying to be quiet
he didnt even move
or make a sound pulling your black wavy hair back
my hand over your mouth in the dark smell of unpeeling
—I remember
loving distinctly how much of you there was—
the same reason we’ll probably be gone
from this world before everyone else—

You told me you’d let me do anything to you
and of course that was a total lie
but it sounded good outside at 4am on the grass beneath the willow—

How were we supposed to know
Rachel’s nana made her the blanket
we desecrated into the dirt with our mad hazy starlit ritual

You told me you loved him but that you needed me—when I came inside you pulled me in as tight as you could—I slept on my own on the couch & saw your myspace three months later still together



Old friends

I once had a friend
who was a paedophile
It’s just a phase I swear 

Someone found his stash
at a gaming party
when he passed out first
we all saw what he thought was hidden

We didnt even know how to react—
so we made fun of him and called him a CPA ’til he figured it out—

He used to wish me a happy birthday on 11/11,
was the last of my old friends that did so

But when I’d get drunk—I’d get loud—I’d
get crazy, unpredictable and insane—
and he would shush me to be quiet
like he was still afraid
after all that time
I’d write this poem out loud
for everyone to hear