Category Archives: The Future


For my next poem I thought I’d employ an allusion to the anthems of love, grace, and forgiveness by the rock band U2
But I hesitated
Fearing that 100 years from now
Or thereabouts
The text would require
An asterisk

To explain the band

As if.

As if I won’t be the one crying for that asterisk: clawing out the entrails of my competition, hoping against reasonable hope that I prevail and share a footer with Larry Mullen, Junior.

As if.

As if we’d ever occupy – much less use – the same bathroom
As if my summit won’t be the gutter-swamp of some marginalia
The pinnacle of my legacy some overeager grad student’s hard fought effort to illuminate the “forgotten history of early 21st Century American Verse”

My therapist says I’m too hard on myself

As if.

As if this irrelevance against the vast sweep of a universe I don’t understand isn’t real
As if my turbulence this quiet New Year’s Day isn’t somehow encouraged by the throbbing drumbeat of “New Year’s Day”*
seeping through the thin walls of this ghastly apartment

*a 1983 song by an Irish band called U2, who were once considered quite popular


Love In The Present Epoch

What’s happening with me?
Maybe it’s you, do you feel it too, what’s happening with you?
Maybe it’s the artisanal wine we’ve sipped, so so good, so
Satisfying inside and so affordable too?
Maybe it’s this rain and the song that Spotify just chose?

I’ve truly never felt this close with someone, it’s like the lines have blurred
Our merging hearts caressing
You and I sitting here, legs folded, facing one another
You leaning in to me
Our foreheads touch softly, just enough so that I encounter the strength and armor of your skull but also the kindness of your mind
And perhaps your soul
Each message you’re sending so soft and clear and unique to you yet classic like memes passed down from the ancients
Our faces aglow

Gosh, it’s amazing to me
I’ve never texted like this before
I pray to some all-knowing all-powerful intelligence to let this moment never end and our batteries never die and our wifi never hiccup and our thumbs never tire

Your texts are so intimate tonight
Oh damn, that emoji really turns me on, I’m typing so fast


Fading Faces

How do I tell you this class picture day
Some will not make it through?
How do I encourage you to hold them now
Every last yucky one of them
Carve them deeply into the folds of your mind
Produce high fidelity remembrances of the joy you now share, despite the unsure jabs you throw and absorb, as you stutter-step-stumble to find some sense of place in this wild order of things?
So when that moment comes long from now
Not so long
To crack the covers of the album
Or however one does these things these days
To encounter your hair and missing teeth and sloppy clothes again
You can enjoy those now gone
Again as real as before, or nearly so
Because, my boy, some won’t make it through
More than you’d imagine
In the blink of an eye


Two Farmers-Market-Poets’ Hastily Composed Odes To Youth

Today, I encountered topacio althaus for the first time. She regularly sets up a small table and typewriter at our local farmers market, with a sign asking for a topic and a price, promising a poem at the end of the transaction. 

topacio althaus at work

My sister-in-law approached ms. althaus with a financial offering and a suggested topic of our young children: brother and sister and cousin, one of them a newborn, one three, one four.  Here now is the poem that resulted:




I too took up the challenge of the topic and created the following on my phone: 


Three wee ones
Some whipping like warm summer wind
Through the forest of ancient wrinkled calves and knees 
Saturday’s lumbering farmers market shoppers
One sleeping, mouth gaping, chirping like a settling bird
Bound by blood
Sister brother cousin
Georgia in her mother’s arms, three weeks old
Isaac, three plus one, so four, patiently enduring the face painter and stares from tiny cousin Merryn, three 
She who is eager to run and play more before his batman cheek is done
Bound forevermore by this memory
The warm early autumn morn
Among those busy being old, shopping, and nearly born 



I made no money.

A good day for poetry.

And berries:






old song for the new

Yes yes and please more yes
Tell me again how old I am
Whisper wrinkle free how irrelevant my culture has become
Yes yes and please more yes
Join me in this haze of conventional whiz dumb
And allow me to wring my worried hands over your imminent decline
Attending the ascendance of your lost generation
Yes yes and more please yes
Throw up any barriers you can young man
My convalescing mates will gladly dance that most removed of dances
And chant that invocation of phantom castes
Yes yes and more please yes


Getting Old Is Always So Depressing

How do those words feel falling from your mouth?
These ideas you’ve scoffed so long and now own?
How far removed from the orbit of your soul do you find yourself today?
Has the reality of the failure begun to set in?

Or have you just accepted this dry wrinkle your days have become?
Let the humorless warm bath of rigid frigidity soak in?
And is this all just okay?
You fuck.
You mother fuck.
Feeling good?
Proud of yourself and this language, these narrow thoughts in which you’ve jailed your imagination?
May you always remember the late night you gazed up from the earth and felt profound irrelevance and omnipotence all at once, the understanding you possessed in that instant.
May you never forget how you have forgotten that!



That’s enough
I know too much now
Missives every moment you summer on the shores of oblivion
The onslaught providing comfort 
Hollow reminders of the bedrock of this moment, but this moment alone 
Perhaps that’s why you feel the urge to over-share
Perhaps to save your sponsored soul
A bulwark against the others’ stream
The breaking reports of a life you should have lived passing you by
A swollen swift-flow:
I am so much better than you
How do you and I find our way back
Speak, touch uncertain
But speak and touch once again
The obstacles are many and true
Progress does not wait for you
Our interloper loves to march, the cardio sublime
Too pleased, too eager
Zealous seductions of soft limitless cool mud while the planet burns
Sticky tar 
Don’t look here, no not here
The answer is poking you elsewhere

Love after the whistle has blown

The factory of your mind is closing
The light fading
Like the dying arc of an ancient sun in another universe we’ve yet to find

Take me there with you
So that I may shout my echoes among the damp white walls and abandoned work stations
So that I may suffer the reverberations in my chalky bones and decay

With you
As we promised
Forever ago
In that universe we’ve yet to find



Tomorrow versus The Status Quo

I broke the rules like your nose, punchy
They were in my way like you stole my girl
They were conceived against me like that turd and your mother
Meant to help the well-off only like your country club Christmases
But they trapped me like your pussy jiujitsu
So here I am in jail like all your broken dreams
And I dream of freedom like your daily bike ride to the beach and job
You lose like I win
Just deserts, punchy
Just deserts