Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Free Agency

There’s nothing like sitting at the ballpark.

Catching a game in the sun
or under the mezzanine
during a rain delay.

Slamming down hotdogs and
overpriced concession beers,
screaming your ass off
like a wild creature
as you cheer on your team
and pray for victory.

It’s the bottom of the 3rd, with no one out,
and Mason is up to bat.
He’s always a threat to go deep.
Jennings, an All-Star shortstop,
is on second with a 3 foot lead.

The pitcher looks back at Jennings,
sees daylight, and spins around
to fire the ball towards second base.

Well, the middle infielders
must have had their signals crossed
because neither managed to catch
the pitcher’s pickoff attempt.

Jennings was almost to Third
before the ball had even hit the ground.
He rounded third like a baby rabbit
running from a mink.

As he darted home he stumbled,
grabbed the back of his right leg and
crashed onto the white chalk of the baseline.
He screamed in torturous horror
while his career ending pain intensified
with every thump of his steroid riddled heart.

It was the complete ripping
of his Achilles tendon that caused him
never to play professionally again.
He did have a brief comeback attempt with
the Ketchum Rifles in an independent league.

At Lincoln High School he was considered
the 7th best senior in the nation and was picked
19th overall in the major league draft that year.

None of it matters to me though because
I was rooting for the other team that day.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Palo Alto Stories

Palo Alto: StoriesPalo Alto: Stories by James Franco

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

As punishment for not writing as much as I should be, I read Franco's book. It was a cruel and unusual punishment. After the 3rd page of the first story I knew that I was in for some serious pain and I really wanted to stop reading it and return it to the library. However, I perservered and somehow finished it.

This book would better off being used instead of waterboarding at Gitmo to get answers.


View all my reviews

Friday, May 20, 2011

When the Sun’s Comin’ Up

5:50 on a Thursday morning is not
the liveliest time of the day.
Not a whole lot of people hanging out.
No one’s really got any place to go.

It appears to be the last shift for the cops.
They’re headed back to the station,
blue and red lights flashing.

There’s a weird, white van backing up
to an old warehouse, done shadily and
on the back burner.

Not the kind that one would do
if they were an employee on the clock
with benefits, rules and regulations.

Oh well. I’ll keep goin’
on my way back home.

Should I take a left and head
through the heart of the city?

Zoom past the homeless shelters,
the post office, that sculpture
in front of the fountain that the city
shuts down in the winter.

Take a right and go over the bridge
on Marquette Street. Pass some art studios,
old apartments, two liquor stores
and fuck knows how many churches.

Or maybe go safe and take
the scenic route across the river?

Pass the maples that seem to made out
of concrete but are sticky and sweet.

Pass the brown oaks bombing autos
with acorn mortar blasts.

Pass the Douglas firs standing
with their deciduously erect cones.
Both ways will get me there in roughly
the same amount of time and shape.
It all depends on me and my mood.

But it’s difficult to choose because
it’s summer and the fountain is on.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Air Was Filled With Seagulls

For David Dodd Lee

Like the school of
rock bass swimming
in the lakes of
Michigan and Indiana

and minds,

we swam, some
may have spawned,
but, for the most
part, we made it past

the cranes, the water
rats, the doctoral
puritans, the undertow
ever lurking beneath

and weary fishermen.

The water is still warm.
The generations, that
survive, will come
back to the place

where they were born.

The title comes from a line in David Dodd Lee's poem "Harbor Lake" from his book Downsides of Fish Culture.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

It is Still Happening in This Town

Long gone, hardly done,
and far from home
the naked man hitched
a ride from a bulldog
one too many times.

Magnificent blasts of bombs
suppressed reasoning and played
holy Sunday psalms in reverse.

I’ll trade in the shopping queen
for a half-eaten jellybean.
The ripened extension of gas
lines the veins of middle-class

Perfect secrets escaped
the crime in progress.
Latch-key runaways tongue
the dirt paths that cluster up
the country side.

Bulky, oxen-women’s fish fry
flopped and flipped fire
retardant mush morsels.

No one can seem to get a grip.

Brightly shaded cul-de-sac
is busy with bicycle traffic and
foot powder salesman.

Here’s a magnificent salamander for
the price of an amateur panhandler.

A microwave brain, locked under
full restraint, is set up in a toy store
waiting for holiday packaging and
nipples dripping with honey.

I’ve located a depressed monster
under the covers of a flower bed,
south of future radiation.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Loud Words, Quiet Thoughts

Love vaporized after Mexico
like the Mayans and Aztecs.

Was it real or an escape to prove a point?

Tears have been encroaching upon
the swamplands of Florida as opinions
stir up chili-pot hurricanes.

The freakiest display eyes ever
focused on. A walking slot machine,
a monstrosity of nature, a recluse
entombing itself in a marble mausoleum.

Without even being able to recognize
names or faces, copulation ravaged wild.
Like a new breed. A mix between
peacock and crocodile.

Let go like a four inch perch or the
memories of kids smoking cigarettes
behind aluminum sheds of grandparents.

Monotonously snaking an abandoned
squiggle over raccoon prints, gravity’s
force stops every fall, empty eyelids peer
through potato field rainforests.

I’ve Seen the Jesus Before

Malaria earthquake crisis sets in
Ravaged by the vices of others

We’re included for now
and maybe tomorrow, too

Pocket transistor has the static in tune
Eavesdropping on steamy conversations,
thigh lickers, toe drool drinkers,

only to find out it’s a vanity affair

Mirrored shadow reflection
spotlight finder caught your crocodile
tears passing through my alligator arms

Carried your dead weight all the way
to the purgatory crossroads

Your ride waited, seated at
the right hand of the driver

A wink of the eye informed me that
this was either a joke or dream

Inside your soul moved,
belly danced right up to the

cracked dashboard tabernacle