The Kitchen Knives and I
been here forever
still straining to hear that lost chord
linger after the others leave
living under the constant pressure
the knives put me under
reluctant to leave my den
my stretch is nowhere near
at an end
maybe they will come to their senses
again for me
remember the younger man leaning back and laughing
me with my sneakers a tacky brown and white
carving a message in sand
revealed as the water recedes –
now it’s twilight
and deep cerulean
strung up in the midst of winter
mind empties itself
all over the kitchen cabinet
just inches from
miracles a drawer not to be opened
Another Drive-by Shooting
When the bullet hit,
his body pitched forward
and, before he flopped onto the sidewalk,
his mind was remembering the cousin
who was shot in the exact same spot,
how, though up in the room
he shared with his two brothers,
he could tell from the loud report
and the cries down below
that someone had been taken out,
most likely a guy that he knew.
Lying in a heap,
blood spilling from his chest,
he could hear the ambulance, the cops,
long before they came,
because those were
the sounds from the last time,
They’d come for him the once.
Now they were coming again.
This Feeling from Below
As I go to bed,
the basement breathes down my neck –
stale air –
can’t keep them it bay –
can’t breathe the oxygen that will save me –
circled by filth – don’t feel haunted as much as
so how do I survive?
does the odor leave eventually?
I’m being poisoned –
where are my friends?
why have they given up asking
how things are with me?
the night is curdled,
rotting in my nostrils –
no stars, no moon, no sky, not even an attic –
just these fumes
I cannot exorcise –
just people too busy to even say
ah, here he is again.