New occasions for sin

featured in the poetry forum July 21, 2022  :: 0 comments

Here’s a story
about the nature of evil
and the absolute goodness of god
we used to hang out downtown
hit the hobby shop for comics
get grape soda and beef jerky from the party store
bragging about
fucking
this bitch
that bitch
we were in eighth grade
listening to Nirvana
casting comic book movies
becoming comic strip gods
we didn’t have time nor the mental aptitude yet to contemplate Thomas Aquinas’ natural theology
god is everywhere
the grass, the trees, the concrete, big bang cosmic ray afterbirth and your shameful ejaculate
SIN- an action, an intent, a thought, without god
a burgundy rode up on us
laughing girls
we all would shamelessly lust over
later on
in our rooms
in the one-hundred comforts of solitude
they pretended to fight over us
asking what school we went to
if we wanted to party
did we have any beer?
laughing all the way
knowing we were too young
and embarrassed for it
we skirted their questions
gave fake names
made fun of each other
tried talking shit back
until Justin
pulled down his pants
whipped himself out
yelling
“Let’s play dick-out!”
a couple of them screamed in horror
the rest laughed
they sped off
we never saw them again
nor did we hang out with Justin again
after he put his dick through a bagel
we made our laws without god
but god was always there
who knew?
apparently, not Justin

editors note:

Just cuz you showed yours didn’t mean god would show his. – mh clay

How bad does it hurt?

featured in the poetry forum May 3, 2022  :: 0 comments

Blood horses
mechanical gods
lightning strikes born of liquid dawn
rebirth from the crescendo of the mordant cherry blossom opera
dancing in the rain
feel the heat
of apple pie pussy
after dusk romance
run to the sea
at the ground zero of Armageddon
death bomb implosion
open your eyes

editors note:

If we keep ’em shut, no Armageddon? (But, no apple pie, either.) – mh clay

The getaway

featured in the poetry forum February 24, 2022  :: 0 comments

Night shift
Past midnight near the witching hour collapsing nigh dead at the door as the sun rises
I’d hear her within an hour or two
talking loud on the balcony
lamenting lost youth and cracked beauty
sometimes she’d corner me in the parking lot with a bottle of whisky as I smoked pot behind the carport
“sometimes you just have to take things like a man”
“you need to be a man about it”
“throw her down and just take her”
“I just need someone to use my body”
“I’m so lonely”
What I could I not do except not follow her into her place
the booze was expensive for her income bracket
leather face, sagging in all the right places, smelled like cancer but not quite
what did I do?
Went upstairs
there was no sex
as she undressed
three cigarettes in less than an hour and three cans of bud light with her whisky
even this was too low life for me
nude and battered she told me about the word of god
I told her I didn’t believe in god
“but you at least have a bible?”
No
“you’re fucking mean, get out of my house” she shrieked
Big black bible blues
Thank god I got out of that one
waited for the sun to go down
to be done for the day
insert myself back into the night
away from company
away from myself
loneliness
desperate yearning

editors note:

All in a night’s shift. – mh clay

Be gentle tonight

featured in the poetry forum December 15, 2021  :: 0 comments

Be my shadow
ignite the night
my nocturnal wanderer
in the shade of outer-space delight
tell me what dreams may come of fever pumped gasoline dream madness
a permissive ice cube of joy
forsaken
bold heat
in the realms between us
water
light
the source of all life
born of a darkness that which does not bequeath death but bestows a universe
unflinching

editors note:

Astrophysics education in a shadowed shroud. – mh clay

Anal Corporate Babies

featured in the poetry forum September 23, 2021  :: 0 comments

(contribution by Robert Ragan)

You have to sort your load on camera
don’t tell customers we’re in a pandemic
you can’t call it harassment if the weird old man gropes you
that guy with the gun tucked in his pants is just as scared as any unarmed employee
never mind he doesn’t have a holster
don’t worry about him
worry about yourself
we need documentation that you work here, even though we know you already do
the burden of proof is on you
we need documentation you own your website
there was a perusal the work is in the public domain for free
do you have permission to publish it?
It is my site, my company,
But does everyone else know? Did they provide you official documentation?
Your contracts don’t count
Your incident report of on-the-job injury doesn’t comply
We know you worked those hours on the clock
But you weren’t technically scheduled
Stop calling it “harassment and abuse” just because someone was having a bad day and wanted to fight you in the parking lot
Don’t call it a fascist coup
Don’t call it anything
You should’ve said “have a nice day”
Even though he walked toward you threateningly and flicked a cigarette at you
He swore and threatened but you shouldn’t have walked toward him and threatened him back
Before you quit
Fill out these forms
They need to be done
Corporate needs these
Yet they still have a third party send out official exit surveys
Meanwhile
A guy at amazon gets an email from his boss two doors down who got an email from district who got an urgent memo from regional who got a dead to rights message from corporate by some guy yelling with his pants down thumping his chest in the board room
the grunt running from drones races down an aisle with a black magic marker
he’s got to cross out all the offensive parts in the book you just ordered
fuck that guy

editors note:

It ain’t personal if it’s filled out in triplicate. – mh clay

Just another Tuesday (really)

featured in the poetry forum June 1, 2021  :: 0 comments

Why are my dad and I
both allegedly stoned?
arguing over the song
“Combat Rock”
Was it The Clash?
or that one band
You know?
That wasn’t The Clash?
No, I don’t know
Punk or reggae?
It’s just another Tuesday
as The Enterprise soars the space-ways
what exactly prompted this living sitcom scene?
we pop open a couple beers
ignoring the giant dead elephant
in the room

editors note:

Father-son (non)bonding over a rousing good game of “name that band.” – mh clay

Four decades looming

featured in the poetry forum February 22, 2021  :: 0 comments

thinking of the wolf in the black church
chained just before the altar to an iron stake long ago
pounded into the wooden floor
old earth occasionally spilling
bloodied, chain collared biting
two dogs bred for fighting
yipping, snapping, gnashing
a pail of water thrown at the triad between rounds
I might be dying
just not yet…

editors note:

Birthday dog fight. No candles, no last breath to blow… yet. – mh clay

Capitalist therapy

featured in the poetry forum November 3, 2020  :: 1 comment

Masks in the parking lot
car exhaust from mad shopping excursions choking the atmosphere
a bag of half-eaten fast food bakes in the heat
yes sir, Amerika’s back in full swing
no contagion here
step right up and get your realest realism
but something just isn’t right
maybe a touch of evil
under patriotic circumstances
what is the purpose of life?
“Do an inventory, rolling good times versus tumbling bad times, audit what you don’t like”
“remember it won’t work until you pay your bill.”

editors note:

Nothing does (and in the distance; more distancing). – mh clay

Trip to nowhere

featured in the poetry forum August 18, 2020  :: 0 comments

My father
a giant tumor
My mother- ashes
scattered along
the railroad tracks
how many people
have breathed her in?
who will inhale me?
breathing in both
my sweetness
and disdain?

editors note:

In with a gasp, out with a sneeze. Gesundheit! – mh clay

Confession of an unlived life

featured in the poetry forum June 13, 2020  :: 0 comments

Screaming mind into overdrive on this lust sweat-drenched night
heartbeat away from mine
see the hands of strangers all around
all over her figure over the years as I sat desolate
alone in the room
mattress on the floor
haunted by desolation and loneliness, afraid to touch and feel
know the artificiality we’re all plagued by…
jacking off with my Russian literature and doom-laden existential tomes pretending to be a quantum Buddhist in a sick layer of Zen hatred
I didn’t die all this way not to live
dying over and over
to live in a hungry yearning
sitting with the bottle alone
waiting between car repairs
wondering “what’s the use?”
until it stopped
you settle
that’s it, you’re going to do it, breathe, fuck it, ruin it, decimate feeble brains, make your mark
or that’s what I thought
guilt-stricken on the cold kitchen floor
fridge buzzing, blurred,
where was I?
vodka bottle empty
another fifth of something broken
dried brown drink on the floor
glass shards in my face
the first time it hit
my mother was dead
how maybe she never loved
she loved to torture her son
cleaning her shit and piss, as she said, “something’s wrong here, you don’t have anyone.”
Remembering how you toyed with her insulin to see how close you could get her to death, to the point of begging?
How she wept.
How they kept you from going to school.
Kicked you out after you took ecstasy.
Gave you a meal
set you out on your ass with nothing but the clothes on your back and the car you bought?
Why do these revelations come at the worst of times?
during the best moments of now?
On the point of building something great
or shall we burn it all down now?

editors note:

After reflection comes bare resolve or a grand conflagration. – mh clay