Kiss

No more shall these lips kiss those of another
for none should compare
where once pink tresses lay on pillowed glory
now nightmare sheets of touchless torpor


These fingers will not caress nor hold in joy or passion
and none shall hear a laughter peal
nor the sounds of mirth be made
the silence is the death of delight


No more shall hearty friendship ring
for those were tossed aside in grief’s storm
and in solitude’s stark glare
the deliberate alienation of all souls


The are no fresh blooms nor shall there be
just dust rings on unpolished wood
dead petals form a graveyard of hope
and dreams lay dying in the remnant of memory


Forgive me then my lack of cheer
in the bleak miasma of an aura grey
cold embers of what once roared in warmth
in blue-eyed gaze and tender whisper


Still I fall into the darkest depths
with despondent desperation of sorrow
growing each hour still, and time heals no wound
grim comes on rusted wings

White (song)

I break to often
I break to soon
is to damn easy with a needle and a spoon
I break so easy
but I don’t bend
drinking from the bottle like my body never ends
I must be sleeping
I can’t tell
whisper to myself in a voice straight outta hell
ain’t no poet
ain’t got pretty words
ain’t no goddam thing ‘cept what you heard
Another cigarette
and another bottle of booze
held in these chains by my lost muse
when I sleep
dream of better times
when I am awake there’s only one on my mind

I been going crazy, ain’t got no sense of real
I been getting hazy, can’t think I only feel
I was lost for all those years, now I’m seeing I’m lost again
running out of ways to pretend that I can stop the pain

I run so damn hard
I run so damn far
but I was drawn like a moth to the light of that star
I ain’t different
but I’m not the same
feels like I been blinded and maimed
can’t wake up
from this prison cell
gonna get fucked up and sit here for a spell
mind ain’t ready
for what comes next
hitting it again to stop from feeling the effects
of whatever went wrong
and this I know
I am living by the creek and drowning in the flow
head feels heavy
heart feels cold
but I can’t stop wishing for that fool’s gold

I been going crazy, ain’t got no sense of real
I been getting hazy, can’t think I only feel
I was lost for all those years, now I’m seeing I’m lost again
running out of ways to pretend that I can stop the pain

I break to often
I break to soon
is to damn easy with a needle and a spoon
I break so easy
but I don’t bend
drinking from the bottle like my body never ends

Written for guitar, vox, bass, and drum.

Folksong #3

The devil wakes me up, he’s a’pushing and a’shoving
he tells me without him, I’d be nothin
what I should be
what I could be

The devil wakes me up and he takes me by the hand
tells me that I’m empty in this foreign land
what I should be
what I could be

He’s bringing the bottle and he’d bringing me the pills
he’s bringing me the answer to all of my ills
what I should be
what I could be

He’s taking me away from all I’ve known before
he’s a’singing a’praying from the mountain to the shore
what I should be
what I could be

I don’t know where he comes from
but the devil is telling me to be strong
I don’t know where he has been
but the devil has my face
again

He’s the mirror in my eyes when I see the looking glass
a bottle of wine and some whiskey through the mask
what I should be
what I could be

He’s writing all my words and the music that I feel
the devil brings me wounds that I can’t heal
what I should be
what I could be

I don’t know where he comes from
but the devil is telling me to be strong
I don’t know where he has been
but the devil has my face
again

The devil comes again in the day and the night
the devil is the darkness and the devil is the light
what I should be
what I could be

He lost me in the bottle and he lost me in the pills
but when his spirit rises it’s everything thing I feel
what I should be
what I could be

I don’t know where he comes from
but the devil is telling me to be strong
I don’t know where he has been
but the devil has my face
again

If the devil comes a’knocking at your front door
be aware there is a price to pay, don’t ignore
what you should be
what you could be

He’ll give to you the words and the music too
but the price is too steep for anything you do
what you should be
what you could be

I don’t know where he comes from
but the devil is telling me to be strong
I don’t know where he has been
but the devil has my face
again

Addled

I wake in sweat long before the dawn
I have not showered in days now
living on cigarettes and booze and coffee and weed
and the toll it takes in some strange
rite of passage
aging decades in months and showing
time passing in rushes and spurts
where once youth shone and held to
features of open smile, now lines form
eyes sunk to hollows in snow-shot ground
I probably smell terrible, but fuck it
nobody will notice or care
there’s an irony to it as I once
was so careful of my look and my ablutions
disaster is another way of knowing
that I cannot take charge of this bodily machine
so I drink and I smoke and ignore
those other needs
the seeming irrelevancies of time and tide
they no longer have use nor meaning
I try — I want!
to write poetry of love and of beauty surrounding
but those images are not mine to give or to say
and with each effort comes the hidden hollows
of my cheeks now covered in my beard
I wish sleep, but it comes so infrequent
troubled with dream and wakefulness
in the lonely hours of the winter night

Sum

I am footprints in the snow
waiting the thaw and fading in the melt
I am footprints in the sand
waiting time and tide to disappear
I am crystal breath in the icy air
dissipated and forgotten
I am the discarded toy, once beloved
cast aside in thoughtless disregard
I am the single raindrop
vanishing in the sun’s gaze
I am the fleeting dream
erased in the morning light
I am the faded photograph
past recollection at the bottom of the drawer
I am the rusted sculpture
bygone tribute in a fallow field
I am the solitary crow
lonely caw of anguished defiance
I am the echo of days gone by
scattered to the winds of time and memory
I am the unwritten word
not heard nor read nor thought
I am the final chord in the last song
evanescent reverberation in the dying hour

Scan

The flowers are rotted in the vase
the table unset and bare
the candles long snuffed of light and warmth
the music is silent and the needle off the record
the words unspoken drift as smoke in the air
as ephemeral as my endless cigarettes
or my haunted dreams
I whisper them to the shrouded stillness
unheard, unread, misbegotten
drawn deep of smoke and mirror
a looking-glass reflection of calcified eyes

Slog

My hands are clenched in icy blocks
in the predawn rain, treading old paths and byways
a cigarette dangles loose from my blued lips
and smoke wisps in the frigid air like a departed soul
I am 140 pounds clothed and soaked
and the gusts cut deep to my bones
where the flesh has melted away
I am a shadow of myself, but my shadow no longer tracks me
on this darkened road
My hair drips wet down my face, washing away
traces of the morning battlefield
feeling like the thin white duke on desolation row
destitute of meaning under drizzled sky
My pace is random, I light another smoke
a cough, an indrawn breath of wet smoke and cold air
searing at lungs still expanding and contracting
in autonomic regularity
My heart a drum of arbitrary beat
giving rhythm to a wordless song
words rush through my seething mind
more torrential than the downpour in which my feet march
I will forget them all before I get home
washed away by the rain I leak or that falling deluge
I want to float away in the icy waters of the swift creek
to be absolved of my sins or responsibilities
to forget forever the numbing agonies
and delighted ecstasies of a world gone awry
A fresh cigarette finds its way to my trembling lips
I turn and trudge for home

Fragments 0.9

I’ve turned off the heat and the cooker
just made another hole in my belt
the 4th since that day
I’ve given away so many things
but kept your pictures on the wall
and the declaration you made
pinned to the fridge
with magnets and despair
cancer comes on fast and I wonder
if I can hasten it


My dog has sad eyes
as he looks at me
with understanding and empathy


I kept all the things I bought
for your birthday
an unexpected interruption
or a final heave to heaven


You’ll inherit all this, the mess and the random
with some surprise I suppose


Kisses and wishes and all of your lies
memories of breast and of thigh
forgotten with my welcomed demise


Condemning yourself to the romance of
a sodden paper bag
seems a strange way to live


I no longer have fresh flowers
that were always there for you
flowers die, decay is life’s revenge


If there were gods or mercy I would be
long gone from this and from your thoughts
if I was ever there


I’m kicking everyone out of my life
with disregard or callousness
I’m sure you remember how that works
you’re a master at it


Finally alone, unloved, unwanted
the forgetfulness I craved
the emptiness of sorrow
the raven scream of relinquished blood


We start and end in loneliness
and everything in between is lies and deception


Simmer

I looked in the dead of night
for the dead in the night
and found under the bed
the monster I knew was waiting
with slashing talons and fangs of rotted steel
wearing my face in stretched mask
slipping into my skin as his own
in ecstatic agony of form and function
They’re mine – those ghosts and revenants –
and I shoulder their disdain and the hate
as a burden to bear
one of them is you, still beautiful
still chanting a plainsong of love
though your eyes are cold and damning
The monster sees through my eyes
and through my soul
brute and miscreated miscreant
savage as some rabid fiend though I fight
to keep him at bay
It was easy when — in our brief time —
you banished him with a word
or a glance or a smile
He has many names, this degenerate demon
self-loathing, despair, doubt, anguish and rage
desperation and misery and wretched torment
He forces on me the blame for all eventualities
and seethes at the edge of my existence
in endless turbulent fury

Borderline

Today is the best day of the rest of my life
and today is a nightmare
the worst I’ve ever had
emotional overload and agony of spirit
it’s worse than yesterday or the day before
and tomorrow will be worse again
all the skills I learned useless against this onslaught
I no longer care to try for anything
more than this, and soon that too will be gone
I cry at everything now, each television show or errant thought
a reminder and a damning indictment
and all my worst fears are true and real
abandoned and alone in spite of love and your promises
I’m self-medicating my way into
oblivion and the void you left behind
and no amount of mindfulness or distress tolerance
is working anymore
the inevitable end will be a blessing
for me and I think for you
you must wish me dead and gone, a forgotten chapter
in your life