I forget all the time how close I am to falling through ice into a cavern of darkness
You ever wonder if I was I supposed to be something else?
I probably should have been better
maybe I could have been smarter
or drunk and peaking at just the right moment to be charming.
You ever think we were made for somebody just to realize
sometimes you were made only to be you
and you alone;
emphasis on the word alone?
Maybe I could have been better and smarter and kinder, maybe,
It was so cold the other day that steam poured
out of my apartment like a tea kettle
with the radiators swelting like my heart in it’s cage
and I was dressed like it was the bahamas
with everyone having a panic attack about the cold
dressed like thrift store ninjas
about the freeze
about the memory that we all have to now do nothing
just lock ourselves in with our radiators.
I’m pretty sure I am creating this cold with my mind.
Old Haunts of Uptown
The opium dens were where the overpass is now,
the cranks still go there though to take their opiates
and breath heavily in tents or Chevy Blazers
out of the big fat Mississippi rain
with the engine idling but no one behind the wheel.
There is still one old pagoda hotel crumbling up in the air
like a molting lotus flower
with a Saigon roof beckoning a side of my soul
from before this life to come in, lay in pillows, and blissfully
destroy my mind.
There was a painting of a mask on the grave of dead friends of mine,
who put it there I don’t know.
How I found my way back to rue Marseille number one,
folks call it Washington now,
with only whispers to guide me, and a face peaking out
from a raised grave to giggle and dart away;
I recognized the laugh but her name escapes me.
It’s tightening the air molecules today.
Things get frozen in my beard.
Drunk friends tell me things about the Indian wars, we all miss the Indians
we say, maybe we are the Indians, we certainly are not kings.
We drink up high, we drink down low,
we see how many stories about ancient aliens
we can remember in street lamps reflecting off the snow.
These are our days now, some different, most aligned,
like blown out stars
that have long since died.
Time is now, but yesterday as well,
I’m alive today like I was in the future at the toll of the bell.