Monday, November 9, 2015

New Poem - Exodus


Here's another new (for non-Patreon folk)  poem.


And with
the ground behind us,
trodden underfoot
by our congress

and when
the salted earth we
stained, mottles
and catches wind

We have,
without tears, without elegy,
without the
pale historian's scrawl,

Eaten our
dead.   We are ambulatory.
We march,
yearning for - what?

Not home.
Perhaps a gentle cove
Where children
Cannot spy ghosts.

Monday, November 2, 2015

New Poem - Friendship


Taking a momentary break from KING OF THE HOBOS prep/freakouts (opening this Thursday!  Playing for three weekends/11 shows!

Here's a Patreon poem.


Two days.  That's all we had.
Abducting him.
Sat him down across a second-hand computer.
Made it plain:  You're not leaving
This apartment, seeing the seasons,
until the work's warm, stapled, and delivered.
Until you graduate.

Joe and me, we slept,
we slept in shifts.  Kept him awake
with coffee, with brainstorming paragraphs,
with friendly fire from burp guns.
impossible:  Kueberth put off
six term papers and now,
the clock was bleeding dry.

By the fifth paper's
end, and the last
Kueberth wouldn't stop shaking.
He was a grasshopper on a
saucepan.    Suffering just so because
he knew how damn close
success was.  Shuttered his muscles.
Closed his eyes, headed for the bathroom, locked
the door.

It was then that I knew that sometimes
you have to drag those you love
into victory's barbed wire.
With what tools and nonsense
this stubborn beast of time provides.

With my father's
creative mischief,
I picked open
the lock.   Found him
sitting, sobbing.  Leaning next
to the unused radiator.

And, out of some
perfect madness,
I began to speak
in a gruff, patchy brusque.
For twelve minutes we spoke,
metal and man.  Called myself
Thermidor (the heater's name),
Teased and cajoled Kueberth
to get those fingers

That he did.
Haven't done many selfless acts
in this time.
But seeing him take that
sneaking pictures several thousand
miles away of him,
a wide-grinning wife, a baby girl,
I'll keep those moments.   When I
put my wretched self
to use.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Poem - CD


Here's a poem I wrote for Patreon about my oldest nephew (who turned five this month).
I think he's pretty darn cool.


There's an allosaurus
Neck deep and ravenous
Inside a hapless stegosaurus
When he slams shut the book,
Wheels to face me,
and whispers:
I've just released a new song.
He wants to be
a gardener
a singer
and a paleontologist.
All three careers tasked
With the ministration
Of patience, digging deeper,
And solitude.
I clap my hands, gesture to the
Theatre of the living room.
He grins, a bit too tightly,
Spins in another dervish,
(as if shaking himself braver)
Ambles to the center.
A beat, he oversips a breath,
He sighs and with that exhalation
Every bone wresting him upright
Puddle of nerves crawling towards me.
We tickle one another,
And as we play, I wish I could tell my nephew:
Fear does not weaken us; it simply
Develops a deeper appreciation
For song.
For, before I had a voice,
Before I trusted that what came forth in sound
Was useful,
I'd hold concerts in pillows.  I'd sing
Quietly to push tears back inside my sockets.
With breath finely tuned I'd attend each sore
And aching bone.
We sing to keep living.
There is no rhythm, no explicit coda, no familiar chord in
Our frightening seconds.
We sing for ourselves, a constant performance,
Pulsing like the veins
In a newborn's skull:



Wednesday, September 2, 2015

TFLN Poem - Dating, Defenestration


Here's a new (new to non-Patreon types) poem. Another one. For daily, curated Jara weirdness, you can jump on board for as little as a buck a month - just click HERE !

(801): The last person that asked me out got pushed down an escalator.

Change your tone, Brandon.

None of this whispered questioning

about "desire" while we're at a goddamn birthday party.

It's public.

We are eating –

I mean, there's cake –

Sinful portions of dark chocolate.

And you're towering over me like some

sad, half-starved goat.

If you keep talking,

I will finish my slice,

blot the crumbs with a napkin,

and kick the fucking breath out of you.

Just one good blow.

Not even at full strength.

Ah. Now your eyes, those dark,

overbounding, arresting eyes - they meet me. You demur,

Nod an apology, cross to the couch.

Seven minutes later, you're a ghost.

Make some quick goodbyes to the host,

hug the birthday girl,

smile sadly.

(when you smile, you always smile sadly)

Step into the rain.

Out beyond reason, I text you.

Tell you I'm sorry. That it just wasn't

proper. The time, place. You're agreeable

and burbling apologies yourself.

What I'll never, never say:
there was a window,

months ago,

when I was sick with fever

and you were a novel sound

giving me life.

Dreams - I had such foolish dreams

of what we could have been,

our muddy time.

Yet somehow, I found the strength

to rise from bed,

lift up the sash,

hit that unforgiving, solitary ground,

once more running.

There's work to be done.
Limited time.

Concessions must be made.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Orange County - First Draft of New Song


In between all the worrying about hobo stuff and just making it through August in general, I ended up knocking out a draft of a song about my old stomping grounds.  I explained more about it to the Patreon folk.  Join for as little as a buck a month, and get all kinds of bits and baubles!


first verse

in the year before i left
i lived alone
just on the border
letting dust collect
no self respect
an emotional hoarder
i was
drought from the
tears i
good friends i
when love is gone
and youre
three hundred pounds
and all is aching
you just hold tight
dream every night
the plans youre making
for if they
did not land
end up
upon this island
i would have died
by my
own hand

every weekday id drive into
orange county
the culture of the office park
a bounty
upon my head
the seasons a bleached white
had my fill of the pleasant folk
orange county
firm handshakes
and a static grin
their keepsakes
its heaven if youve got yours
if you dont
get gone

second verse
in the year before i left
i sold or gave away possession
head down
working sixty hours a week
walling off all the wild depression
didnt self reflect
sever and disconnect
just made some money
to leave this town
when love is gone
and youre the serving class
who wrestles dishes
tends strangers daily
fakes a grin and grants their wishes
each couples call
brings counsel
feeds them all
meanwhile youre starving
your heart
you grind


just dont give
mark it all
youre older you
that the hell preaches
just dont give
keep making
the works gonna
save you
deep breath
keep your
word true

every weekday id drive into
orange county
the culture of the office park
a bounty
upon my head
the seasons a bleached white
theyre a bleached white
had my fill of the pleasant folk
orange county
firm handshakes
and a static grin
their keepsakes
its heaven if youve got yours
if you dont
get gone
if you dont 
get gone
guess i best 
get gone

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

New Poem - Family


Here's another new (again - new for non-Patreon folk) poem.  You should really hop on this gravy train!  10 bucks a month gets you your own monthly poem, one buck a month gets you DAILY curated stuff I make...  GO!

This poem's a snapshot of my childhood.  Poor as we were, we had some great summers sometimes.
This was one of them.  I've written before about how games shaped our family.  Here's a brief window into that devotion.


Three children sleeping across a Monopoly set.

A note squats on Free Parking, impatiently scrawled with a magic marker:

Weenie's Turn. Dozing without blankets.

A thick sheen of sweat coating their syrupy cheeks.

Discarded Slurpee cups, a Little Caesar's

Pizza box, A radio (won in an costume contest), still lightly playing, set to

"Kara's Love Line". And, as these siblings dream,

A caller (Charlene) with a catch in her midnight speaking voice


A song to her husband

(Rafael) serving overseas in Japan.

Kara, the sensual DJ, hums to life. She soothes,

Each word caresses the evening air. A little pause, and Heatwave's

"Always and Forever" cradles the sleeping trio.

There, until morning, these children remain.

Stuffed with romance and sugar and paper money.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Poem - Now


Here's a new (new to non-Patreon folk) poem.  If you sign up NOW and become a patron for as little as a buck a month, you get all kinds of daily stuff...and SOMETHING SECRET AND AWESOME will be announced August 1st to you first!


The web of flesh
between my thumb
and index finger
is a reset button. I pinch
and press it when overwhelmed by
the hazards of memory, the persistence
and manufacture of future time .
There's pain. Kind which slams shut the book of distant daydream.
A second passes. No poems are written.
No elegies of the past held.
Every fiber on my skin yearns for a signal.
Unprotected, eager, accepting each new force
without coveting.