. The Poet's Beat .

. The Poet's Beat .
"A working class citizen is apt to see this country for what it's worth... A miasma of interlocking variations on differing demographics and geographies unlike any other inhabited space in the world. The American Dream. The rolling footloose hills and the upstanding Apache badlands where criminals cut bread with priests and the children of Hollywood. I am no different. Yet I am still brazen enough to think that the world is a playground built by the rugged hands of a hard-working man in order that my fantasies be materialized." -- P.P. Vonnersdale

Monday, November 26, 2012

The Electric Bill

When the electric bill becomes a terrifying proposition...

Mosquito house guests hanging around in the still brisk air, Dining at their leisure, Taking advantage of my open-door air conditioning system, In with a slight soft breeze come my six-legged neighbors, Leaning in to whisper in my ear, To whine about their short lives, Their troubles from the puddle to the grave,
Cream-colored yard lights cast slatted shadows on the paintings on my walls, The long black fingers reaching creeping for me in my solitude, Charcoal eyes mistake me for their own in the flushed phosphorescence of turning cars, We catch one another’s lucid gaze, Like lost raccoons in the trash pile when dad pulls into the driveway, For a second we are brothers of the lonely regime, Until darkness collapses and we are misplaced again,
I wander my carpeted cave following the bouncing beam of a flashlight, A fisherman casting a yellow net upon the sea of my belongings, Single socks come and go, The corner of the couch is illuminated by the lantern’s signal like hazardous rocks off the coast, A ghost in the skin-cloth of my naked self passes through the mirror, Pink parts and pale spindly limbs wound tight under a body lawn of close-cropped pubes, Haunted by my own blinded eyes pupils retreating into themselves, I toss the flashlight and come up gasping for air,
The bills have begun to go unanswered, The phone rings with monsters on the other line, (It has already vibrated growled twice on my desk since I started this poem), Silent electronics surround me in my sadness, One does not appreciate those dim digits on the microwave until they are gone, I am a Pharaoh wandering a forsaken tomb of stone and drywall and asbestos in search of the Hall of Two Truths, My heart on the scales of justice judged against the weight of a single feather, To depart into the Kingdom of the Dead, I am an empty epicenter in a world alive, Headlamp sentences carved by cold fingers on the stoop beneath the stars, They twinkle with life when the bulbs above my stove do not, Always lit, Always burning, Always on, And there is no one whom requires a fee for their power.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Two Boys, At Play

While we ate amazing pork dishes cooked a hundred different ways and drank dark rich wine, while the string of light bulbs burned overhead and the black river drifted by behind us, while we sang happy birthdays and percolated in the Fall night atmosphere of friendship, I couldn't help but watch two little boys come and go, playing together, oblivious of the world and of the stewardship that was their's to hold safe, as we all held it so dearly that night around that table. 

While the succulent skins of choice swollen sows roast in an electric fire,
Peppered by the refined spices of a colored history of Cajun culinary composition,
While aromatic pig flesh flowed freely from the beast’s bits lying in creative combinations cut for our disposal,
Greased fingers and fingernails plucking toothpicks of meat from well-placed plates,
Salacious lips missing slick strips of tender hog muscle to fall glistening buried in beards,
Those same glazed lips over which spill the pungent pig-sweet breath of young conversation,
While laughter danced between intermittent songs of philosophy and enterprise,
While the golden brown Abita ale of ideas mixed in the malt froth foam of the passions of people in love with each other,
Hand-held lightening became a birthday candle that leapt willy-nilly between the pale cumulus clouds of human bodies,
And the thunder that cracked was the cackling zest of life,
While the mud-rich river that once carried wayward Creoles tip-toed by in the maddening darkness,
While the grass grew heavy under the sins of a cooling night,
While the lamps burned ever on to light the way,
While the root beer settled,
And the cinder blocks remained wrapped,
Two boys came and went,
The venerable youth of this great southern city,
Caretakers of its culture,
Back and forth they ran,
Keeping to themselves the sly secrets only boys can keep,
Two boys, at play.


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

For the Men Who Walked in Zion

The ecstasy of pain. The exultation of thirst. The elation in the destruction of the body. All for those miles. And those sights. The rapture of being alive on the dusty trail...

There passed four bearded bastions lusting for the manifold wonders of life,
Thirsty as desert dogs to sip the swift currents of adventure,
Their heart sails ravaged by the monotonous minutes spent too long in the presence of that vile seed, the Every Man,
They fled his kind into high country canyons and the deep arroyos of the West,
Hard land where things lived with empty stomachs,
Where water bled from rocks,
Where lizards jump from shade to shade and eye such trespassers with curiosity,
Bold oarsmen of action these men were,
Rowing with the wooden paddles of manly discourse their humble steed,
Long past her painted prime,
Her blue coat a miasma of rusted craters,
Only a passionate kiss from the driver would elicit her four cranky cylinders into motion,
With a sanguine smile they bade her wait for them,
And so she waited,
Glorious miles of lonely foot falls through the boulevards of sky-high canyon columns,
Down the avenues paved with God’s stone,
And the corridors of ankle-swallowing sand,
Stinging nettles along the trail-side wait like lions for their prey,
A lifeless rat in the water supply,
Blue Iodine in the eggs,
Whiskey fires on the plateau,
Complete pre-moon darkness and the stars dancing in the infinite distance,
Wrapping themselves around each other,
Chasing their tails,
Disappearing into the blue smoke of glowing cigars,
A welcoming wind of fresh cold air in the morning,
To greet their ground battered bones,
Their greasy hair,
Their reluctant metamorphosis from the twisted shells of sleeping bags,
Arise to walk the earth,
To bear the burden of one’s existence on his shoulders,
To don dusty boots cracked and worn,
Joy is pain and blood is life on the trail,
Baptized in a river of ice,
Their dirt washed downstream like the sins from a newborn babe’s forehead,
Four bearded bastards sun-bathing on naked rocks displayed like drying deer-skin for the trolley,
Tick-full of fat tourists with grey hair and the bygone memories of orgasms and chance-pleasures long left behind,
Some men walked the desert to arrive at that river,
Some men took a bus,
Some men will live their entire lives and never hear the blood cold cry of a bull elk in the pines.