the importance in reclaiming words to revive and maintain individuality, which is not a blood bath or a fucking crime. tell your parents that.

I was driving home for lunch today,
and I started saying words out loud
different phrases off the
top of my head
single words
making associations
moving along from one
topic to the next
I realized what I was doing
I was writing
into the thin air
it even felt like
a form of prayer
I claimed I was doing it
with as little ego as possible
that it was coming
from a soft heart
you have to do whatever
it takes to get
the words to come
I realized my love for words today
the world is
trying to shut you down
especially with words
with TV with whatever
they can use
it gets to a point where
it’s not a matter of blaming
the TV or radio
it’s a matter of blaming you
blame yourself for
going soft
there is a time to talk
it’s up to you to know when
and to do it well
take your words back
flip them around
show you have some soul

basic, run off
the porch
don’t threaten me
this is purist
indoctrination
no, no
this is what
you get
when you come this far
you start seeing firsts
this is the first time
you see someone die
it won’t be your last
this is the first time you
vomit in front of
other people
it won’t be your last
you come this far
a school will give
an older guy an award
for just the effort
grant me some books
this is the first time
I’ve looked at them
with eagerness

today I felt
more of a stomach knot
again and again
it’s the same with
these people
you get stuck with them
you get stuck with having
to take the dog out
you trap yourself
cut your arms up
bang on doors noisily in hallways
to open up
kind words evaporate from you
you sepia yourself
you’re too dull to see it
you become just like your parents
the only difference is a few years

say nothing at
the dinner table
this rule is broken
there’s no dinner table
eat on the wooden planks
and be happy
my heart is broken
I don’t wait
for the mail any more
everyone stopped writing
ads pour into the box
even after I’m gone
resident: September is
near, aren’t you going to
take advantage of
this High Definition Television set
sale for school?

words fall out of the radiowaves
finally I remember telephone numbers
from when I was sleeping
they want to make it easy
there is only one way of thanking them
work hard on the job
take the downpour of abuse
like a man, like a woman, like an animal

all the best clip art is
of animals
animals always
steal the show
to me
they have the best personalities

qualities and time taken
add words and
be true to yourself
young men are attracted
to such violence
it is rare one sees
manhood in buddha
sitting down
quiet
when the
words are silent

I always question the normalcy
and the so-called pleasure
derived from it
skin crawls to think
I somehow intermingle with it
make compromises
and so on
meditate on that
take good care

sadness passes through

when I say heavy
I really mean it
today has been
so heavy
mother nature herself
may step in on this one
and force me to quit.

girl jokes
(but not really)
of contemplating
jumping off
a building

monday gut
crunched up
driving with
headlights on
through rain
to post office
nerves jumpy
small butterflies

break up the furniture
for the fireplace
to keep warm
I won’t huddle under
the smokey shelter
with them and
get my clothes
all stank
I’ll get
oxygen from
water like
a fish

fear is a
terrible motivator

gone is the work ethic
staff
thoroughly insulted

force pieces together
until they fit
force and break
they say:
no happiness in this world
think some more
I’m happy to write
even about pain
do you trust me?

creating sentences from
other people’s words
now they’re mine
I’m waiting for
soul to kick in
maybe it is
the soul is playful

I lie in bed
laughing myself silly

I beg for the
death of
top 40 radio stations
morning shows, etc.
put them in a
rocket to the sun
good bye, gone . . .
wait
what else can we
put in there?

the elder

woke up from
long evening nap
decided from thinking
about this all day
that finally
I should go out
on a walk
through the
neighborhood
beautiful streets
and houses
I was hoping for
more lit up insides
but some were not
at home or had
turned in early
around 8:30
for a minute
I was reminded of
the neighborhood
of the first
Halloween movie
October is not
too far off
I’ll have to watch
that sometime soon
the air was perfect after
it rained
storms will come and
then stop on Wednesday
I could use just one
more day off
but I don’t get
things my way
not always
and not often
I have to carve out
my own style
from what’s given
to me
punk rock to me
was always about
doing that with
rebellion and appearing
rugged as just a
matter of defiance
to all of the
mainstream bullshit
in the world
as “the elder” I
suppose I’m continuing
on in this frame of mind
even if I walk down
this blocks a little more
unnoticed and in humble garb
clothes with holes in them
in bed I was thinking
how I had such
a messed up childhood
but also remembering
some of the good things
about it –
skateboarding, listening
to music, growing up and
further developing my
independence, the good
times I had with friends
and so on
the heart and soul
is to be remembered
through all the trouble
of the past, present
now at work
I’m with young kids
and I feel 70 years old
just ten years difference
really hits me
I don’t mind so much
but it’s definitely
something new for me
for some reason I never
expected that to
creep up on me
even though I listen to
a lot of current music
some things I’ve missed
a lot of teasing back and forth
the small babies and the old men
smirking

personal zone

hate how
I forget things
about you
you have
sharp teeth
why do
I forget that?

next door
they are
making noise again
noise everywhere

noise of my
breath
but that
is
not what’s
bothering me

kidnapped
tape all over face
faced out
fazed out
you forget
how to talk
worse,
you forget
how to write
words don’t come
dogs jump on
you
wolves jump
on you and kill you

you could ask for more
you don’t know
what to ask for

you ask for
better microwave popcorn
put in a request for
you don’t
organize your life any more
it’s chaotic, panicked
over
your mind is
something else
that is
not you
it is a pendulum
of your own sins
the swinging
ax blade
blood drawn
at your stomach
this is not music
to cheer up to
the greeting card
section is
over there
my section
is a small box
now leave me
the hell alone
no noise this
time around
one small thing
I know to ask for
no noise in this
place so I can
seek focus
elevate the
mental picture

purely
a movement
human alive
animal stalking
anticipation
unknown object
creates
unconscious state
comatose

journal is the sacred space
to hell with full English
leave me
leave me alone
I’m frozen in this
after work
I know enough
to work for myself

you have disappointment
I can’t believe
the amount of poison
flowing through you
death slowly
your pathetic organic car crash
your body
you eat
strictly pieces of
other bodies
strictly bomb shelter food
food dropped out of
crop dusters
promotional packages

balk yes at young bits
paper clipped
while flagging yourself
to death
falling asleep on
the road
everything in
front of your eyes
is a distraction
is blurry
is a part of something
flashing

you would kill to find
this kind of dedication
you kill yourself
the coward’s path
the shut off path
nature
nothing
makes it through to you

moth flies around in
the lampshade funnel
august painted shut windows
gushing water from ceiling
man with his bedtime clothes
the folded stack in his
upturned hands
like a baby
“this is what I have to offer.”

“tell him not to take things
so seriously,”
they say
he writes back
“is it possible that I don’t?”
they don’t know
“I think hard about it. sometimes
I’m like you, I’m laughing.”
but it’s a different laugh
all of it is different
he has become
the elder
the one in history
the wiser
the character
ten comic books worth
of something
you can pass on
to your generations.

a poem from Alan Dugan

MARXIST ANALYSIS OF THE FIFTH LABOR OF HERCULES

The Augean stables were so full of horseshit
that the Augean nobles came to laugh at Hercules
when he was told to muck them out by hand.
They hoped to see him filthy on his knees,
all asshole and elbows going fast for years.
Instead he wrenched a river from its bed upstream
and set wild water roaring through the place
and washed it all away, all
the horseshit, and I mean all
the horseshit – the horseshit, the horses,
the stables, and the nobles too,
standing around ready to bugger Him,
Hercules, Wrestler of Rivers. Conclusion:
Revolting conditions elicit revolutionary solutions.

more happiness from the body

he’s a nice old man
but we call him dirt
because we’re tired
and hate him
our invaded space
is breathing fire
never back
this one animal
into a corner
he will feast
on you on impulse
no regrets

all the things
I like about
this world
get auctioned off
to the highest
online bidder

who asked
for this poem
was it you?
was it, was it?
I wanted to
grind up on this
curb after I
watched the movie
but it wasn’t waxed
I locked up
instantly and flew
landed on my
shoulder

I have to wake up
early sometimes
to get a
look at it
in the dark

have to explain
myself
which is fine
need to know
if I
really can
need to show it
or I’m
taking up
space, as they say
-not proud to be an american
it boils down to
yeah, after everything
how could I be?
well, they say
-what about other countries?
nothing I say,
others have
nothing at all
they have nothing
and they have nothing to
do with it
I’m here and
don’t like it
I’m not waving
anybody’s flag
especially not the gov’t’s
am’s wanna play victims
and survivors and the
cowboys that kill the indians
don’t forget triumph
over Hawaiians
innocents
yet terrorize even themselves
and everyone else
capitalistic takes
all it can get
and will come back
for the rest later
I’m peaceful
quiet communistic in the
middle of the 1950s
roof made of cardboard
until I can
afford more
I try
my damndest
she doesn’t want
to hear it
like this
lesbian doesn’t
wanna hear her
girlfriend talk
about getting
married to a man
someday and have kids
from here to the back door
how’s the garden
don’t disturb the
bubble even after it pops

more happiness
from the body

upset sitting
here like I
am going sliced up
into pieces down
a factory belt
slide onto trucks
shipped off
you have me
to the
last penny

a poetry slam
is self mutilation
in true form
anti outlet
pearls
cast
to swine
peace you say
in pieces
you see the
peace sign
I see a wish bone
you a see a cell phone
I watch this movie
you get a dial tone

I wanna carve this
40 dollar book
out of the side
of my hip
divide it
into a million
and feed the planet
so I’ll have the time
to read it

apartment update

finally settled in, feeling so. in our apartment in this house in an old historic district in the mountains. couldn’t ask for anything more except for some money. everything is focused on settling in and returning to some sanity, hoping it’s possible. stay tuned for new updates.