you said last night you think I am magic.
& you have that inescapable purple in your aura,
pivoting like vonnegut’s wampeter, which is why
the animals are magnetically-drawn to you,
unlikely cult carp whisperer.we all eventually have to do psychic maintenance
so half-hour to midnight means walking
on elevated concrete roadside benches,
holding in hand that feeling of being sure
like lollipops in the mouth or stone bracelets,
like sitting crosslegged under the esplanade bridge.

someone but not me needs to paint
your bullock shoulders your nimble wrists
your inability to unplug from Real Life:
maybe it is because you want to be
a different height that you refuse to
allow short-circuits.
is this what they mean by industry?

binding your own wrists in neoprene cuffs,
you permit leather blindfolds that can’t cover the
quirk of your smirking mouth & your insistence
that your hard-on is good for at least something,

even if it is hanging dirty towels like
a criminal execution. your kisses are

a study in botany,
like things to be taken apart and examined
under bright lights and steel tweezers.
like the ball of your thumb is a thing
to be taken to heart.

even afterthoughts of you feel like
the uniform fuzz of carefully-shaved head,
firm touches, scented turquoise pineapple
crystalline and now I know

the sound of a three-hour telephone voice
is a tall glass of citrine, sea kelapa syrup
spread excruciating over the railwork system,
like a lapdance, like the fatigue carried in the
arched feet of someone who inhabits heels, like
trails of formic acid, like
busy, busy, busy.

I miss you
even when I am next to you,
you said,

and I took this as thundercloud omen,
storms wielding wet bargaining chips
but you’ve always loved finding the sublime
in the mundane and I’ve written so many
poems about marrying the divine and the
profane that we know we can find
both pedestrian and arcane in the

you said, I am afraid
we are only really good for each other in bed
but some good advice is do what you love.
stretch before dancing. and eat more broccoli
even if you don’t particularly like it. wax
lyrical about your mussels one more time.
buddy wakefield famous slam poet says
when you feel like stepping back from the mic,
step forward.

I am backing away very slowly now so
I don’t startle you. I am whispering to the carp
instead of teaching them foucault that it is
perfect to be afraid. that it is permitted to know
you are breathtaking in spite of yourself.
buddy says, stop fucking with the moon,
so I tell you, I’ll meet you on the green platform,
on the third floor, on the astral dimension
just above this one.


(13) (excerpt) to all the poets that I am secretly in love with

they say opinions are like orgasms

they say opinions are like orgasms

Written for Word Forward’s April 2014 Anti-Slam.
We were supposed to come up with terrible poems, but I’m not sure any more. This one was written for performance, which is a different kettle of fish altogether. Thankfully, I like seafood.

the heaving of your chest fascinates me
as you deliver another spittle-charged verse.
I wonder what you’d be like in bed.
You’d be mediocre, but I’d be worse.
I hope you don’t think wet flaccid tongues
on underarm hairs are perverse.

Lover, you put the ass in assonance.
put stanzas in your poems but don’t line-break
my heart. Use as many mixed-drink metaphors
as you need but remember I am a cocktail
whose olives need no stirring. You’ve shaken me
like a half-dried bottle of lube
produced sensations that I never knew
before. If you were a vibrator
you’d be the Hitachi Magic Wand.
If I were an asshole—you’d
be a bidet, because you blast my whole being
into producing a lot of bullshit.

If you were in a fairy tale you’d be the wolf
preying on my faltering grandmother
of a heart, but you’re neglecting the little red riding
of my clitoral hood
which is as ultra-sensitive as Singapore on race issues.
but I love it when your poetry gets political.
the fervent conviction of your speech is almost erotica.
they say opinions are like orgasms—
I voice mine at the top of my lungs—
in bed

If I were a slam poetry judge
I’d marker the whiteboard
of your skin with my tongue.
If I were a slam poetry judge
I’d still let you score.
If I were a slam poetry judge
your performance would take
far longer than three minutes.
Baby, I put the pant in iambic pentameter.

you might be a tease
but I’m telling you at least
I have no known disease
so let me give you release.
If you were a boy I’d be a catholic priest.
You might be divine but I’m the messiah
who’s going to give you a second coming
who’s going to make sure you get nailed

Lover, my confession may seem alien to you but
know that my love for you is one big
this relationship is like an anal probe—
it would be far more efficient
if you disrobed.

So, when in the dark you encounter my ambush
—don’t look so wary.
remember: not all devices at my disposal
are literary.