“The Race”

I’ve lost faith

In the human race,

Which is just that, a race.

It’s about what he says

She says is best,

And what’s best

Becomes less and less.

We never rest.

So what’s left

But what we never knew,

The limited knowledge

We pursue,

A heart never happy

Unless there’s two,

A voice crying out

From a person mute,

And when we have

Something to lose,

We never rest.

We never rest.

A dreamless muse,

That’s what’s left.

Our right’s abused,

That’s what’s left.

Everything’s used,

That’s what’s left.

That’s what’s left.

That’s what’s left.

That’s what’s left.

“Prisoner”

Stuck in my chair

Captured by institution

Fatalistic, about to receive

Academia’s injection

Not here for life

But the better part of it

On auto-pilot ‘til release

I coast, ignorant to the

Outside world, my eyes

Might as well be kept shut

I fall asleep on my bed

Not free here either

I’m a slave to

My mind—it dictates

My dreams, replays

The events passed or

What comes later

Worst case scenarios

Then I wake, my eyes

Tremble, the only thing

Not immune, nor numb

Try to scream a desperate

Utterance, but silent

They dictate Morse code

Nightmare!

No one hears

No one sees

I’m prisoner.

Fall 2009

“Under the Knife”

You ask me what I want to be?

I ask myself who I’ve become,

And somewhere in between these

Is the right someone,

And all I want to do,

And all that’s left to prove

In myself, everyone—even you?

I don’t know where they are,

But I do know where to start,

In these words, my art,

The pen becomes the scalpel

Making incisions in my heart

And if I slip and slice—

Perhaps an artery—

Let the words rush out from every vein, uncontrolled,

Like a rare hemophiliac waiting for a cut that won’t close,

If the lifeblood gushes too much, stitch him up, quick,

Before he oxidizes and the air taints the very message in his soul—

I’ll keep writing,

Everyday if I have to,

Bilateral dissections

In ones and twos,

Pulling out my organs

And earthly tissue,

Though I may be no surgeon,

With hands that only tremor,

I write to save my own life,

One last operation to remember.

“Why the Squirrel had to Die” a response to 8in8’s “Twelve Line Song”

A furry little thing
Perched on a porcelain sink
In a studio apartment
Sees the bubbling bath
Conveniently prepared
For the not penultimate
Ultimate plunge.

The visions of the acorn
Famine of the fall of ‘08
And that tragic, twisted fate
Losing his feral family late
To the hunt for which a feline was born
Flicker through
His fleeting flea-ridden brain.

He had been around
The circle of life
And saw the whole joke
The punchline
That came full-circle
For this old fuzzy friend
A freshly filled bath
So his life could finally end.

With a last poignant squeak
He took the past-due plunge
Thinking to utter
“To be or not to be…”
But decided Ophelia instead
Had the right answer
To the question.

The last molecule
Of his breath
Surfaced to the top
Unnoticed and well-blended
In this bubbly bath
From all but one,
A rubber ducky
Who went “quack!”
And wrote the 12 line song.

“Some things are more or less like that.”

“Feed”

 I put in my ear buds,

            turn on my iPod,

            and play “The Morning Stream.”

            My morning feed.

            The way I stay

                                    Connected to the world.

I step out of #233,

            and lock my door.

I run into

an old friend

            from high school .

He’s listening

            to his iPod

            too.

We each take out

            one ear bud,

            my right,

            his left,

                                    so we can hear

                                    each other better.

We catch up for a bit,

            walking to class

            before we have to go

                                    separate ways .

I put my right ear bud back in,

            my iPod’s still on,

            and play “The Morning Stream.”

            My morning feed.

            The way I stay

                                    Connected to the world.