. 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

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Had We Gone for a Drive



You watch me in her dining
room turned cocktail server
serve yourself lounge.
Soft as baby blue walls wallpaper peeling.
Pulling the cork from a green
glass of cheap wine the eager
gift of one of the guests.

Feel your eyes on me.
Like your long fingers tracing the
scars on my shoulders where
the dark hairs lie down with freckles and
thin bones.
The smoke from your lips snaking its
way across the kitchen.
Around the pot-roast and pecan pie and
overburdened conversations torn
apart by strange hands.

World of slow motion.
World of white knuckles.
These pale faces piss me off and I
could smash each one of them because
the truth is I love you.
I love you in floods of shame.
In fire.
It is the loudest secret I have
ever had to keep.

Who was it that we were in Barcelona
on those warm nights when the
face of our love burned bright hot like the moon?
I told you to stay awake.
I would be home in a while.
You stayed still but I became lost.

You stand wrapped in your questions spinning
in a very quiet way by the sink and the
dishes covered in eaten cake.
I pour my wine and listen to a
faraway Spanish guitar.
A girl in white wearing red shoes.
I'll be home in a little while.

Your sad delicate smile on the beach catching
a few notes while the rest of them fell into the sea and
were scattered across the world.
You would have loved the stars tonight.
But this stranger's bed feels so cold, lover,
without that sad smile
sleeping soundly on my chest.
We'll never know, will we?
We'll never know if all of this would have
changed had we taken that drive that night.
I'm sorry, my love.
I'm sorry for madness and dissension.
And the cruelty of the world.

12/2012

ta

Monday, October 24, 2016

Crimes and Signs



I haven't seen you in a day,
and you haven't seen me in a year,
the all-wise Asian man with the third eye
     still sets the same clock
     you left your grimy cum-covered fingerprints on,
his bent back and withered nut clutch
     ride the city bus downtown
     to repent
     and cuss,
the cigarette smell in your jeans doesn't seem to want to wash away,
no matter how many times they're cleaned,
the crotch rotten and a train
     derailed along the zipper teeth,
my lips pressed to the print of your sunburned tits,
newspaper clippings of your father's brazen outlaw deeds
     magnetized to my kitchen fridge,
his face frozen and bereaved,
searching for a son the devil turned into a daughter,
too sexy,
too sweet,
slipping through trails of sweat in this gotdamn sizzling summer heat,
melting like snowballs flavored like raw meat,
dreaming of sensational days running naked through the glade
praying to the goddess of Fall
     with soothing serenade,
she loves me,
she loves me not,
ripping the pedals from a daisy and crying through pools of
     green snot,
smelling of hard work,
of the struggle,

but that can't be true - she's too damn lazy,
she could be a howling haunting nightmare in denim and flare,
messy and undressed
     and lurking behind flashing signs that warn
     BEWARE,

or,
or I could just be crazy.

6/2016

ta
photo by Helmut Newton

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

In Confusion



What are we doing
in confusion
love me or love me not
the bruises on my heart remain hidden
   because blue on blue is misleading
treating you like a stranger
deepening the gulf between us
illusions of a river we were once knee-deep in
now the current is sweeping and we've mistaken
   the flowing water as freedom

rivers empty into oceans and better men than I
   have been lost forever in that vast empty kingdom
sing me those old soft songs and remind
   me that my heart is still beating
bleeding still means that my blood is flowing

so remember to check the context next time
   you mistake sight for seeing.

2016
ta
picture by Larry Niehues

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Close To My Heart



I will always keep you close to my heart,
as the sun's light fades and I am propelled into dark,
as brightly burning Sol becomes yet another countless spark,
alone among the stars
doing my part in an aluminum jet-powered horse-drawn cart,
I will think of you
when everything falls apart,
when my calculations go awry
and I can no longer read the star charts,
when state-of-the-art sensors short
and shut-down sequences start,
all pretense of survival thwarted
as my ship's weaknesses begin to spiral,
and I am reminded why you called this mission suicidal,
begging me to stay as I prepared to embark,

but you knew the mission was vital,
and that I would always keep you close to my heart.

2014

ta
image by Tim Walker

Saturday, October 1, 2016

The Call Boys of Ensenada



The call boys if Ensenada in their dusty boots
and purple lips
break hearts with bloody knuckles
leave pesos for their princely pimps
desert senoritas scoff those brazen boys with the way
they move their hips
sink the sand worn ships that ride the dunes from
slip to slip
rusty knives in pockets hide light assault ammo
banana clips
the dark haired girls tango
and the mustachio'd vaqueros watch with their beers
and sip
trips into the desert never end well for the unsuspecting peasant
the crescent moon hangs forlorn on pistol-packing legends pregnant
with violence
and the guidance of cocaine in its purest essence
the way of life of the villano is now threatened by government executives
holding public sessions
denouncing the cartel Armageddon
three thousand pesos hidden in the bedding
of Juan Antonio de Jesús
his footprints headed into the desert learned of all lessons
to face the loneliness of omnipresence
the young María Elena left cursing heaven and denouncing all earthly pleasures
crying into her lover's Stetson
threatening to end her life in a teary-eyed confession
the wind blows hot like rattlesnake venom
violencia beckons
Ensenada welcomes.

2015

ta