Monday, August 31, 2009

Blurred Rose Tattoo

A gold mullet tied back
with a shoestring. Sweeping
our fireplace by getting
inside, soot on her exposed
bra strap. At the kitchen
table with a Sprite, handed
wads of fives for New Year's
because we forgot about Christmas.
Old red Cadillac; parked two
blocks away, or takes the bus.
Her own set of brushes
in a cracked plastic bucket.
The smell of bleach
and earth from her skin.
Hands that grow each week.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Big Black Dog

Head like a gunboat. Blue
eyes: stars constantly
receding. Breath of rotten
Pontiacs, half-buried
in the backyard. Follows

me to the dinner party,
insists on my lap.
He savages the chicken,
the sweet potato. No one
clucks or looks away.

The short woman next
to us, with a sound like
a flattened sparrow, lifts
a chunk of orange
something from her hair.

Dessert is on his tongue,
all over my face and neck.
Mommy, he murmurs into
the puddling ice cream, Mommy.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Little Red Pony

and the surgeons stitched you
back, black heavy thread and staples,

so in the tiny bleached bed you
looked like a girl-sewn doll,

your face wrinkling and smoothing
in sleep, your eyes making cursive

beneath their lids: shoulders, ribs
still bruised in boat-shapes from

the instruments, where they tied
you down & little red pony, little heart

galloping, how red their gloves
when they held you and started over

Friday, August 14, 2009

Disaster Porn

He rips the door off the hinges at 4am -- it's not even locked. He stumbles and hits his head on the chair. He lies still, his mouth slightly open. I can smell the piss on his pants -- there's a yellow trail of translucent vomit down one arm. His eyes are so swollen they look like leaking red fruits, as pulpy as plums. He makes himself a bowl of blackberry ice cream and falls asleep. He tips over, wakes up; he steps on the cat's tail, he steps on the cat. He leaves the refrigerator door open, knocks milk all over the red-tiled floor. He turns on the gas stove. He tries to light a cigarette and sets his beard on fire. Milk footprints follow him into the bathroom. He tries to make a knot of the shower curtain and hang himself, he tries to take off his shoes and pants at the same time. He ends up face down in the tub, scrabbling and slipping. He pauses: his breath is wet and heavy. After a moment, he asks for a beer.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Dopesick Angel

The bedsheets he uses to cover his
windows chatter in the wind, I watch

the stains on their edges move
into formation, grow wings. I imagine

what she saw just before the Mustang
struck her, I see her trying to raise her

hand to cover her eyes. He said he kissed
me because the mole next to my eye

reminded him of her, although she
didn't have any moles, and was much

softer and easier to touch. I touch
his crown as he's sleeping; I rub

the plastic edges, peel the stick-on
bunnies off the inner rim.