Measuring Art In The Rings of a Tree

Science can only take us so far

we’re still waiting for the second act for cryogenically frozen heads

while satellites pass Jupiter, sure

though not as far as our paints and saints go

I mean imagine the mind of Michelangelo mixing his palettes

beneath his dripping ceiling of this Sistine Chapel

and who do you think he created first

God or man?

The science of art

this mixing of photosynthesis of yellow and blue

married to spring leaves

and everything green in between

and all those planets that can’t be seen

we believe

lie in an outside galaxy

other branches of this same tree

making papery promises

mapping out this Milky Way’s majesty with poetry

all the while pinch yourself

cause we’re all living posthumously.

 

 

Selfies: The Silent Killer

Selfies kill more people than sharks

so why am I more afraid of surfing on the ocean

than surfing on line on my phone?

Because I’ve seen Jaws too many times

but I’ve never seen Selfie: The Movie

and even though experience is our best teacher

unless the Hindus and Buddhists are right

we only die once

so we better make the best of our death

an event so big that secretly

we think this is the biggest event of our life

bigger than our birth

so what gives?

Death.

Birth doesn’t scare us

but Death does

at least the first time

cause Death terrifies us

cause we don’t know what comes next.

 

The Name You’re Given Ain’t Always The Name You Got

I don’t want to wear my heart on my sleeve but I just sneezed on your monogram again

here we are

Writer and Reader

in the showdown to end all showdowns and all rainbows

cause whoever takes this takes over the story the glory

you win cause without you these words are lost and penniless

like faces of clocks without hands of time

or eyes to watch the clock

or ears to watch the rhyme

or math and numbers without hands to stand them out

when time stands still and still you wait for something to happen

like a soccer game that ends nil nil

and your mind spins windmills clockwise and counterclockwise

even when you can’t see or won’t see them cause you’re too busy googling yourself

while taking selfies

cause you need to know how other people read you

and see you

me too

though I can’t be found on the first page googling my own name

some cricket player in New Zealand

is stealing my fame

so what are you going to do about it?

Me? I think I’ll start with martinis at midnight.

Stream of Somethingness

Write as fast as you can

to escape your memories

waiting for you at the end of this very line

but if there is no line or sign or rhyme

then there’s no reason to end

or to be afraid

like a tightrope walker in the clouds

taking it step by step

knowing nothing

except for the feel of his feet beneath his wire

thinking that this is the feat that leads us all to infinity

that we’ll get to eventually

when we’re patient enough to see

beyond this universe

that rests in the dream of Vishnu and shake your head

and this kaleidoscope sends

changes

and shapes indescribably into the seen and obscene

but these particles remain the same

and here we are

where we said

we’d never be

but as babies

we never conceived of

where we were

and where we would ever be.

 

 

 

when the abstract abstracts memory

When the abstract seems like landscape you’ve pictured before

is when you think you see

everything

until the landscape swallows you whole and spits you out

a babe in the woods

naked and alone and into the trees that look

like Jackson Pollack’s handkerchief before he sneezed

and you’re left wondering

where you believe and what you believed

and life’s too short to see where your sight begins and where it

leaved

and what you see

you once seed

even if the word is saw

that sees through the cutting of these trees

so what you saw was seed

planted deep in memory

harvesting these thick vapor steams and paper ream dreams

until ink bleeds

to read as poetry

or reality

or bullshit

only to fertilize

these next crop of printed dreams.

Religion Trumps Science

Science stopped counting four lines ago

and we just got started one line back

so much for science

when it tries to define whatever this is

and even this can’t say what this is

and Einstein jumps the gun

and there are two nuclear explosions

and Albert apologizes though it’s not his fault

that the world went wild with science

when men saw Prometheus as a religious figure

when men took nuclear bombs as impossible

though God could do nothing

when men saw Prometheus as a scientific figure

when men were welding together the Enola Gay

today when men see Prometheus as both a religious and scientific figure

we get machine guns in the hands of religious zealots who know their holy books to death

but feel none of them

so they can kill because they are psychopaths

and we get Jerusalem and New York and Paris and Fort Wayne, Indiana

without an article anywhere that Fahad had married Mary

and lived to love

for ever more.

 

The One Who Got Away

Moving right along the brain said to the fingers

though the fingers had no idea where they were headed

but as always the blood pumps them up and down

and the white and red blood cells are tyrants

causing oxidation or cancer or whatever the hell they conspire to

create right under your thin skin

and she’s still there

the one that got away.

But what a ridiculous expression

when she never would have come back even if you had caught her

no one gets away.

They leave.

Do you get that, Narrator?

People don’t escape unless they’re hostages.

People leave or people stay.

That’s it.

Only lucky hostages get away

So don’t let this whole poem be about the one that got away cause that means you’re a terrorist

and she’s a victim and we’re all better than that

and let’s get back to the poetry and stop being so self indulgent.