I’m looking for the cashier at Target
to save me
I look because my heart hurts
and it’s way too late
in my life for this
I was supposed to be
on board a skiff
in the Mediterranean
at this point in the game
So I look for the child
who’s thrown a temper tantrum
left a pile of spilled popcorn
in the parking lot
I know he’s still with me
whistling along in make-believe
That’s why I can’t pass
the toy section
that’s why I cannot pass
Those gilded afternoons
the ones with Janis Joplin’s deep blues
they keep beckoning me
to leave this place
to leave this planet
my fleshen hands
by the soil the flowers the tears
my galactic spaceship
They were supposed
in an orchard together
a North Eastern sea
that brought so many
in the Fall together
in our hearts
we lived in different
of the crusty Empire City
at contrasting and
in the future
We were supposed to
chips and salsa together
and blue skies
the fingers of oak trees
fall down from
like the old ploughworker’s
handiwork in the field
the souls and
the soul-filled life
Without your eyes I’m lost like an Earth-bound religion.
They were eagles to fly across mountains.
Canopies for the stars.
They exalted my lungs
to wake me each day
from the dream between the dead and the living.
The Dead Land turns off the lights.
There is an echo of your name.
Then the dawn comes and shows me the blue stories of
your deeply precious brain.
I’ve worn blue for many days since your leaving.
You know, the blue like the solitude of night.
This is an honest and probably unintentional tribute,
the consequence of mourning.
Your oceanic eyes are gone – the planet’s great reference.
I assumed your neurons were the Universe.
I assumed them as infinitesimal light,
the simple place where the living and the dead don’t exist,
The sound of your low voice in my ears
before the sea crashes, your ancient tongue churns me into
almost everlasting sand
and I am found somehow again in this confined, terrestrial
with the things meant, unmeant and unspoken.
These simple passings of eons.
I’m going to move to Vermont
and buy a farm house in the hills
to finish a dream
you first planted in my head years ago.
Why a Texan would do this?
I don’t really know.
Some might call it love.
This will of course be in your absence
and when the locals ask
I’ll just say I’m a widower.
In the summer I’ll be alone up there.
Once I get a little closer to someone
I’ll reveal the real truth in my mourning,
that in all honesty
I fucked up a relationship,
well, you fucked it up too
but I know you’ll never spend
any time addressing that
so really all that’s left is
for me to feel these things on my own
and to live the dream
that you once started.
I’ll walk out into the forest on the hillside,
surrounded by silence and the night sky
and yes, I’ll know how much I love you
and how the eternal sacredness of the stars
will always remind me of you
and the almost humanly impossible
intimacy we used to share every waking day.
We used to be that close,
even when things were bad.
And I know that motivates your fear
to no longer address or think of you and I.
You can’t cuz you’d still love me
and if you still loved me
you might do something stupid.
I will use the leaves and the coldness
and the brilliant blue air of that forest
to heal me.
I hate to admit this
but I know this is the only way for me to survive.
I expect Vermont to be beautiful,
profoundly profoundly beautiful.
goes down under water
the molecules continue
before proton shields
in outer space
to talk to them
the radio signal.
in the brush
of Deschutes Forest
under this sky
for us and everyone else.
in our flesh
that once touched
The bacteria kingdom come
the little nation
undergone a division
a landscape united
a remembrance of courage.
We last in the journey
up a mountain road
July in Oregon
I’m writing of
My ass-cyst still plagues me.
Although you have fallen off into distant lands
my pain still bulges in the regions down there.
I’ve woken at four in the morning with tears in my eyes,
looking out empty windows
and not looking upon your soft skin.
Maybe on your lips somewhere you put lipstick on
or your hair is brushed and fixed.
At the penthius point of my being
I feel the pulse of the heavy world and know
it presses on the puss backed up in my cyst.
Then I feel something in my heart
and looking around for another person’s hand to help me,
I let out a plaintiff sigh and smell the stagnant carpet.
For they wash me in the doctor’s office in the morning.
The sunlight is baptismal.
Has someone erased the holy records of memory?
You’d like to live in New York for the rest of
your life. You like nice things. I don’t want to, but
for you I would join you. Would you be willing to
accept that? Even if I was replaced by someone
else? It’d be ok if this moment needed to happen in
midlife. I would have gotten there, at least by the
water. You could tell me I would still need to remain
there, even if it’s between buildings and streets in
Midtown, around West 23rd. Pneumonia lungs,
frozen toes, a soiled body and that piss n shit smell.
We’ll see eye to eye. Cough up that lung. If there was
love that city would be resoiled in bubonic dirt so we
could go on living there forever, unaffected. Disinfect
our still hearts. You could give me money to live in
New York for the rest of your life. It will take a little
money and a little bit of style through the years. A little
cost of life and people’s dreams. To make this city of
masculinity a home for those who cannot nurture nor
those who have not been nurtured.
Oh, to be able to see you again in flesh
in the perfect whiteness of your face and curves
to bend the day
and tell the sun the parable of forgotten ellipses
to see the person who is both
the most real and most unbelievable to me
I have been the most real for you too
but you are scared of that now
scared of my dark eyes that always
received the blue of yours
like space receives the fire of stars
in this fear the sun’s journey has not returned
the winter of my heart
. . . in your vanished wake
So I sit in a hermitage on Earth
or it could be any lone planet in the cosmos
with a fire of low embers burning
my cold frozen toes
and a cough that reveals the taste of metallic
This is the land of my home
you are not at the ancient hearth
The embers burn, slowly, slowly away
and soon will go the existence of all the Universe
that follows in the death of the sun
This agéd Brooklyn.
It made the evening before this
tire with arthritis.
The bricks from the buildings
to feed for the rodents of winter.
I watched a rat
run across the platform at 7th Avenue.
I held your veiny hand tightly.
This place was reliquary.
You pressed your big breasts into me closely
and we kissed
with your sour alcohol breath dominating
the air of squalor.
It’s fermentation was so Earthling.
I knew you could do no wrong.
So I looked to your bloodshot blue eyes
as if fresh flowers in a field I would not
visit that summer or next.
The pretension of New England
I never understood.
and aching to be naked.
I loved through you
in the movie theaters that put
distance between us
in the rainstorm of Brooklyn
where you said that you hate me
and classic films
I need to know for the sake of
what is really science fiction
Neck Face still exist?
do these participle dendrites still
run through my head?
is my head on this Earth?
that woman on her knees
begged me to take her out of there
with tears streaming
she did not believe
it was supposed to be her home
but I like the sun of the West
I loved all the way through you
and I believe it was
to create some new form of time for