Painted Floor

Paint the floor with faces.
Scour their teeth.
Stroke their foreheads.
Powder their cheeks.
Search for thoughts in their eyes.

Your paintbrush sweeps
through a concert of smiles
in tones that wind back
like flowing hair
dissolved in the crotch of a morning.
Arms and feet of flutes and violins
waltz across the sticky floor.
Flugel-horns blurt Baroque.
Cellists display their bounding joy.

Choirs sigh and blur,
“Sleep ye on a walls. Watch
ye selves on the brand wet floor.”
Rhythms are a byte away,
glissandos smooth and tasty.


Each key of the piano
has a different tale to tell
in a different voice.
Dark glasses keep out
the truths of after-tones.
beat sickles into bullets
packed in orange crates of Wheatees,
champions for breakfast.
Ho Mao, on toast with a goblet
of toadies and a stupor of juice.
Teeth walk around in fine suits
chomping on the news of the day.

Finding His Way

My friend has begun to die,
painfully shunning the call.

Spring has become the mordant
for the colors of his life,
lodged in the folds of his skin,
in the trabeculations of his heart.

Poppies, blanched white petals,
lavender tufts,
poppies, reduced to a liquor,
flux back and forth
through the worst of his pain.

Each night, his delusions glean
what his eyes cannot bear to see.

He dreams of a well
in a parched field.
He listens for the echoes
of a stone he drops
deflecting from the shale
that lines its chasm,
splashing in the pool below.

He grasps the winch,
creeps down the braided rope
to the bucket at the end,

repeats a song from childhood,
loosens his grip,
and falls unceremoniously
to the center of Earth.

back to issue