Saturday, December 23, 2017

War Letter from a Long Summer

the hard heat
adds to the thrill
of being alive

stalking scorched streets
with cold-minded eyes
in the kiln
of too many voices

being that exception,
that warrior poet
standing alone,
is enough
to make us smile
in the blaze
of the hateful sun

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Invisible Flame of Misfit Workers

if we can creep
past the wear-down

past thoughts
too hateful
to darken a page

past misery heedless
near needless
for pay
past the clock-worn
we repeat every day

some spark
flints away
in the dark
with plans
nearly hatched
for some progress
to mark

this waking dream
of guiding flame
powers us through
a poisoned mind frame

it is our own darkness
that we fight
in the hellfire struggle
to create
our own light

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Drummer in Madison Square Park

to an endless dialogue
to no one at all
with brilliant rolls
percussion concussion
to make the doldrums die
walking the park to mark
the tail end of summer

joy in the sunshine
as the city
one stolen afternoon
at a time

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Nightlight Over Long Beach Island

our devices
glow like fireflies
and the night sky
pays no mind
it steers the ocean
to pound these shores
not knowing we’re alive

there is no magic formula
waiting to be revealed
no untapped powers
to absorb
only beauty
to let all heal

the secret
is to enjoy this sight,
to let this glory
be your light

so stop searching
for your soul to feed
this truth through beauty
is all you need

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Proud Prayer of the Infidels

in dismissing these myths
embracing the appeal
of the sting of rough earth,
the carnal, the real

proud to be
that blast of cold air
to bring chaos
to the god sellers

and give chase
with that cold mind,
the blue chill
of cold white reason
so feared
and so great

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Subway Strangers

conversation snippets
patter like precipitation
this heat, that rain
what job, which station

desperate souls
and lonely trolls
railing needlessly
as we roll
among millions
clinging to the pole

all of us awkwardly
for a friendly face
among these crowds

too sad, too lonely
but not too proud

Saturday, October 21, 2017

By the Guiding Light of the Ozone Sky

on a city street
like a secret rendezvous
the velvet sky
calls to us,
its glow
as its calling card
and victory sign
for us alone

we will overcome
profane existence
and be that speed healer,
the secrecy dealer, soldier
and saver of savaged souls,
the harbinger of doom
for doubt,
of false virtue
and all else
that poisons dreams

we pledge
before this dawn sky
to be life’s avenger,
the reckoning to come,
to redeem the mad nomads
and beaten down dreamers

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Ode to the Time Stalkers

our secret way
to glimpse the world
cocooned in our own zone
fearless, anonymous, and alone

steal these precious minutes
from the workday masters
rambling soundless odes
to sooth frustrated souls

stalk this fleeting heaven
of a jazz-touched park
like a secret agent
at a drop

mind reeling
at the deft machinery
of life
its well-oiled gears
laid bare

just in time
to meet our retreat
on well-heeled feet
past the fumes and noise
with all manner
of proper corporate poise

we, sun-starved lunatics
of our own design
forever tethered
and counting time

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Poetic Secret Soul Patrol

pastel skies preside
over the migration
through the dusty-dusk streets

a few spare souls
pace the same sidewalks
in a different zone,
seeing the life of everything

auto-gauging at every turn
they tap our hive-buzz
for answers and power

hear and see it all
in mad, bounteous cascade
the Corlear’s Hookers
plying their trade
the scattershot art
the homeless made

the ghostly cat calls
of time zones past
the sonic rat messages
at half mast

the daytime drinkers
in the hoppy-dark bars
and the yearning teenagers
squinting for stars

in the angelic language
of pigeon wings
under cross-examination
of the setting sun
we all tread home
to brighter dreams
and the day is won

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Time-ripe Ninja Commuter Disguise

the time-ripe ninja
stealth assassin
sent to dispatch
legions of false faces
makes her way
through the metropolis

shrouded in the skin
of the slouched commuter
on the train
to the homeless man
seeking alms in vain

all the while
in stolen moments
scribbling the puzzle pieces
to let loose
the hounds of greatness

they march triumphant
clenched jaws trailing blood
into immortality

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Chicken Bucket Brigade

this rowdy assemblage
like bleacher creatures of old
serves to warm our hearts
out in the rain and cold

the chants, the jokes,
the joy of being here
our tribes trump cheap talk
fueled by beer

our colors are proud
and we know where we stand
singing our songs loud
across the fractured land

the chicken bucket
is a fairly good deal
amid this bogus playground
our spirits stay real

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Madison & Vine

the literary life
is cast in bronze
on the sidewalks
of our great city
for the dead

the living sweat it out
feet to the pavement
scrapping day by day
with albatross dreams
and stolen lunches

then stumble
on the crutches
of park strolls
breathing in
life’s poetry
before spilling it
imperfectly (always)
back on the pilfered page

Monday, August 14, 2017

Night at the Carnival

shoveling fried food
into my mouth
while surveying
the passers by

 —a young parade
of summer delight
to test the men
of Friday night—

but such is this disguise,
ourselves unwell
but artfully wise

and somewhere
dark beneath
a silent warrior’s
sword unsheathed

showing no mercy
the verse unleashed 

Sunday, July 30, 2017

For the Werewolves

I sweat each day
To earn my hide
To burn off this shell
And reveal the wolf inside

By work and desire
Embrace trial by fire
And make ourselves worthy
Of the life of blood and iron

Friday, July 21, 2017

Father’s Day at the Carnival

a tinkering sun glints sharply
from spinning rides,
small feet scamper
on dry grass
through laughter and chaos
to an unhinged carousel
with a wink
from the leathered carney

clasping sweaty little hands
to thunder past
the shady barkers,
hurtling headlong
into years
of everyday madness
and new adventure
of whatever comes next 

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Grit City Sunset

still at heart
this is a gritty city

sweated out
on packed
train cars
where our petty travails
are mocked
by pastel majesty
of sunset

the red-pink
skyblood of pride
slashed across the westward sky,
a reward
for myriad dreamers
cobbling new lives
one hard day at a time,
ready to bare
their threadbare souls
to strangers

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Mud Soup

churning churlish
under canopy of trees
at the quiet park
summer streets simmer
while temptint rain

the only Dad here
hiding under a sweaty hat
trying not to gawk
at the fit mom

and the cool dirt
speaks to me
when the girls pile it
to build their castle

we endure all shapes
of absurdities
to give our blood kin
an edge,
grateful we no longer
have to kill for it

the girls
make their quiet father
mud soup
I pretend to sip it
as I wait
to unleash their ambition
upon the world

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Righteous Fires in the American Mind

Our land,
born from multitudes
of blood,
cannot slip peacefully
into old age.

Like these fireworks,
we flare brilliantly,
a shining white hot light
for all to see,
ending in charred carnage.

History is our loving scold:
Independence is the love of danger
and the thrill of the hunt.

Let us make kindling of our fears.
Let us rattle the slumbering minds
with our fire at the ready
and our gunpowder dry.

If our end is in madness,
it will be righteous and strange.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Lone Wolf in Manhattan

stop to realize
I have become
a walking relic,
a tie-wearing man
in an open-collar world

where eunuchs grow beards
and women lean in
when they should stand

where savages
are taken for scholars
and beauty and art
is measured in dollars

but I smile widely
as I spot the sharp eyes
of my growing tribe
and refuse
to live a lie

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Simmering Summer Song

baked in a flush rage
the bright heat
pounding fists
from above and below
blast-furnace breeze
finds us
even among the trees

in plain sight
a sun-glass spy
avoiding the light
a self-styled wolf
stalking prey
that always gets away

we know our roles
as sun-touched souls
holding the line
until North winds
have their time

Saturday, June 3, 2017

August Night

the music played
a sweaty, drunken romp;
a random gathering
on forgotten benches
as cabs careened
up 6th Avenue

kissing to the white noise
that was Friday night’s anarchy,
the Village sang for us
and sent us on our way

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Lunch Walk

Less time than a prison yard
but more
to put under gaze.
We seek to be invisible,
into the summer haze.

Work piles up
while we breath fresh air
for our only fun.
Let the scene to be seen
turn and blister
in the sun.

Wear eight hats
and pulled
every which way.
We let work eat up
too much of our day.
we’ll go on our lunch walk
to stay.   

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Song of the Hooves

Soundly uplifting
to be the workhorse,
to charge unbroken,
scarred by thorny brush.

Make earthly tremors
a calling card.
Let armchair emperors
taste blood and dust.

Let very course
be a thunderous plain,
let every harness
lay broken beneath. 

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Bounce University

an upward swing
from every down-pressed time
every fracture of spirit
every dying sign

basic joy of motion
as we laugh among the screams
primal, carnal joy commotion
powers scattered tribal dreams

jumping high
and shoeless
as if making pagan prayer
smiling and remorseless
as we immolate with flair

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Bleary Epiphany

spy the clock to find
the hours burned by fast
distraction waves
like knowing knaves
bringing head-slump slumber
at the desk

the quiet dark
is false calm
a rude pause
to the world’s rage
churning somewhere

but the blue night
filled with child of dawn
sparks the need
to fly awake
and burn brighter than magnesium sun
while the rest of the world

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Lightning Bolt

a pulse of power
forged from sky,
a black flame candle,
a rallying cry

the might,
the knowledge
amidst the dark;
the light reveals
and burns its mark

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Subway Ballet

without words
by shifting eyes
in transit trance
no relief
compete for seats
while the stoic critic
prefers to stand

a musical chairs
of quiet despair
revolves all around
to treat the seats
like Caesar’s crown
and thrice refuse
to sit down

Friday, April 14, 2017

Playground Sneak

the stealth Dad,
for children’s play
one eye over shoulder,
a gentle touch at the gate

cuts into afternoon
shepherd the young onward
through drizzle
and the quizzing eyes
of legitimate residents

outlaw father
stepping softly
across alien space,
a small price to pay
and will gladly pay again

Friday, April 7, 2017

Cloud Language

spy the sultry dusk
an intimate ceiling
burning paths
for living dreams

thank with a knowing wink
that cloud cover,
letting us hunt
in that first light
without a burning glare

eyes wide to drink it in,
that beauty that makes us mad
and forever fleeting,
made with water in air

Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Sunlight Iron Flash Muses

the heat of spring
brings the office people outside
brisk walk
to hide our wandering eyes
as the city aligns
to sight the sunning flesh

such fleeting seconds
stitch together the patch-quilt
of our day,
and fuel us
through carnal night
when our real work
is done

Saturday, March 25, 2017

First Bite of Spring

The first bite of Spring
is the cool chill
that doesn’t sting,
is spying the last piece
of melting snow
with a smile and a wink.

The first bite of Spring
is to smell the coming bloom,
to see that slight blur
of color that promises
to unfurl.

To drink in the Spring
is to tread that dangerous place,
and yearn to soak it all in
before it burns our face.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Warrior at the Bulk Discount Club

some solitude
amid the bustling shoppers,
rain-spattered, unshaven,
somehow proud
cubicle sharecropper

weaving past
old and young,
dodging evidence
of decline
to get the provisioning

like a beast of prey,
bringing the kill home
to start the day

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Rebellion of the Cluttered Mind Warp

submission grows slowly
without time to think
numbed with the circus
our gossip
and drink

rancid workthink
bleeds into leisure time
these precious hours
somehow no longer mine

and thus
the chase for daily bread
cascades the worry
in a dreamer’s head

but lo and behold
with such lust to lash out
and take hold of that lightening
to bring real life about

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Kings at the Half King

surly adversaries
after hardly a pint
proud of our heady resolve
and might

making our plans
over soggy-soft coasters
the loud happy babble
of still-youthful boasters

let decades slip past
and revisit these scenes
as hardscrabble years
claim the hardest of dreams

true resolve doesn’t die
but grinds away
and lives on
as the quest will consume us
in our own haggard song

Saturday, February 25, 2017

February Spring

disjointed sun,
breezy strolls
where should be
lashing cold,
something broken
on an axis
rusted and old

false joy,
a gift poisoned
with a bad whiff
of heat damage

time slides forward,
a broken ride
swinging heavily
to an abrupt end

we keep our eyes sharp
to find
pockets of shade
to build our fortress

Saturday, February 11, 2017

The Gospel of Swords

Blessed are the clear-eyed,
the keepers of swords,
by their bold blood
our lives are forged.

Lift our hammers
and our spears;
leave plowshare angels
their slavery
and tears.

Rejoice the future,
present and past.
As we make our history.
the die is cast.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Weeknight in Hell’s Kitchen

Down the dark avenues
where footsteps fall off of crowded curbs
to scuttle past the slow flesh night life,
the neon punctuates
roiling twighlight.

The pastel dusk
is our emperor,
ordering us to sweet sin
that tastes better
with the ghosts of old crimes.

Let us lapse
into madness
drunk on laughter
with old friends.
Let this all
fall out of favor
so these streets
will be our secret

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Winter Thrives

let it pain us to the bones
the wind like splinters
that fires the soul
solid strength
piling higher than snow

savor the chilled air
the frost breath
that finds you there
to chase the skies
to fight, to dare

the hard, the cold
is winter’s great flower
breathe it deep
to gather power

Friday, January 20, 2017

Kisses for the Whale

empty box rowboat
in the living room
sets sail
orders from the captains:
kisses for the whale

sharp-eyed daughter
in thrall with her game
a glimpse of immortality
on the strength of our name

jumping and playing
no riches can compete
blood of our blood
makes a life complete

the news comes down:
there’s trouble in the skies
no worries from the captains
the ship is doing fine

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Cosmic Dragons Loose in the Business World

There were cosmic dragons
dancing around me
at my office.
They praised me
for drinking coffee
and daydreaming.

The eyes of the other staff
were on me
when I tried converse
with these dragons.
They apologized
for their aloofness
but I accept this
as a sacred burden.

They motioned
to guide me away
but I remain
at my desk,
writing poetry
and devising
grand plans
that might please them.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Gotham Guide Stones

grandeur and gutter
in two short streets
consuming sights
to the time
we try to keep

glittering glass
on sidewalk and sky
wearing a stone mask
but searching
every face that passes by

armies of strangers
spin their dances
like demons possessed
angry undercover poets
to how they are blessed