Your mind ratchets like a sprocket
changing gears, ripping seams,
suddenly your mind sees with different ears

Maybe your body too,
feels it – the snap of sinews,
the stretch of musculature,
your chest when my head burrows, neatly into tendon and courage, tucked into your lungs, and the space between your ribcage amd your heart – cells like anything else, atoms like anything else, raging like anything else – a marching band like anything else, like everything else is only a slave to this wizard – this heart creature, swollen and incorrigible
My string of dandelion vertebrae corrode into honey and jam, marmalade words ringed like opals in your eyes
i supple, watering can, grow mountains/ i shed tectonic plates/ i am walking rose bush, fluttered silk/ i am musculature on fire/ i am waterboned and rivergasping
Thank you for this poem of a day, and the way it leaned on me

Hot blooded orchestra feet and a temperament for meat/ rich, waddling, grass-leaved eyes
The answer is I figured out how to unstopper the valve in my head

We live in the literary dreaming

soon, soon, your heart will pump clear blood again. the riptide rumble of toxic funnel will pearl its way out of your veins. i’m sure, i’m sure, love will come running – fire will come tunneling. sun will come hurling like wings. someday, someday, I’ll have enough time to tie myself to something firm and basket-sized. something i can place things inside of. something i can place myself inside of. i’ll tuck myself into bed, i’ll tuck my time under the sink. i’ll clean my blood – my fuzzy edges, i’ll clean my fear. some day, some day, you’ll hear me again – songboat melodymind and riverwide heartbeat drums. do i have love – a place to funnel it? and whose mind is it that i am always searching for?

am i always a river, headed west? will i one day funnel out into the ocean?

happy, i am a bottle of aperture and fstops – with my little boy I am a funnel of tunnel vision – satisfied light captor. i am a lens – photographizing every moment. the way the light plays in your hair. the way the grass sinks into your toes. the way your singsong voice comes thrilling through the air. i am devoted, little one. i am devoted to your heart. that is something that never wavers.

keep pulling the light towards you, keep tugging it tighter. keep walking away from the violence, keep funneling the abuse into something powerful. keep doing it, keep breathing. you have to keep finding strength in his fury. he is a victim of never having been given the tools to process his anger. his emotions. his place as a man in this fucked up patriarchy.

step back, step back. he is a victim of never having been given the tools to process his anger. his emotions. his place as a man in this fucked up patriarchy. i’ll say it again, i’ll say it again, i’ll say it three times too loud – the patriarchy hurts us ALL. not just women. and men get swallowed in the current of not being allowed to be men just as violently as women get swallowed by the back side of the shovel. it hurts us all, it hurts us all. the false pretense of the male form. the false rejection of vulnerability. not giving our men tools. not giving our men freedom. to feel, to understand, to cope. we equip and we equip and we equip women with the tools to learn how to learn how to have emotional intelligence. we practice. we say its ok, its ok, feel, feel. talk about your feelings. honor them. talk to your girl friends about it. process, process. this is part of your gender, this is good. this is good. and then we fucking send three signals three different ways with men. we shame vulnerability, then we shame them for not know how to be vulnerable.

that doesn’t mean masculinity should be shamed. masculinity should be honored. femininity should be honored. and vulnerability should not be relegated to one sex or the other. emotional tools should not be given to one sex and then used to beat the other up for not knowing how to begin to fashion tools for themselves. we feel very comfortable saying that it’s time now to teach girls to be strong, to be empowered, to fight. and we rarely sit in that place of deep knowledge of what it is we must do to better equip our boys. to let them be. strong, scared, vulnerable, manly, light, bright, dark, shadowed, rageful, hopeful, wide-eyed, fearless, terrified. it is not weakness, it is not weakness. to tremble with the recognition of yourself. to survey yourself. to understand your emotions. to reflect. to breathe, to pause. to learn how to open up. these are not feminine traits, nor are they the anti-thesis of manliness. when will we get past this? get past the “man up”, “stop crying”, “don’t be a fairy”. when will we get whole? when will we even recognize that we need to get whole in order to fix the whole problem? stop the cycles. stop the cycles. you want your little girls to stop being abused? give little boys a respect for their emotional life. teach them how to communicate, how to open up, how to be vulnerable, how to process anger. do not glorify a violent response. do not glorify violence. do not glorify an angry rebuttal, a fistful of answers. give little boys questions. and ways to walk themselves into them. to sit with them. to be patient with the confusing tumult of emotions. do not keep convincing them, through imagery or otherwise, that a violent, aggressive, or angry reaction is the manly way. and that apologizing is weakness. and that self-reflection is self-pity. and that strength lies in winning. and that your manhood can be found inside of your venom. suck the poison out. snakes can coil, but do not them choke. manhood lies in something deeper, something wilder, something free-er than the bonds of anger and the simplicity of violence. these are not the brave choices we have been taught they are – they are a trembling animals’ self-defense mechanism. glorify the real man – the new shape of manhood. the firmness of heart, the fortitude of spirit, the ferocity of forgiveness and giving and growth. the strength beyond gender. the strength within gender. the fire banked down deep. the one you cannot spit out of your mouth or cower behind meanness – the one that spills out of eyes – fumbles out of warm hands – curls over a hurricane spine. he a storm, he is a river, he is a meadow, he is a wanderer. he is his own; and he belongs to the world. he gives back to it. he knows what it is to give. to receive. to feel. to hunger. to ache. to make whole. to search. and to find.

let’s glorify that manhood, shall we? and everything in between. nothing is wrong – except the wheel that keeps spinning blood from blood. break the cycle of abuse. we know better now, don’t we?

did you not remember?

I can’t make it there by 7pm
I’m sorry, I simply cannot make it
did you not
remember by May 9th the moss his draped itself
over the swollen wooden staircase on the other side of the canal –
the sight is a devastation of beauty

the weeks have grown up over the river banks and musty shadows of the dust-flies
have kicked up a new light
and the pools of aqua-green chase my bike tires /
hungry-hued at golden hour

I cannot possibly miss this sunset / I cannot possibly miss this
please I cannot possibly miss this dusty emberglow
please do not ask me to /
Please do not ask me to

a poem regarding my anticipation of your coming comment upon my work

do I hide in my words /
do I rest on tropes /are the tropes that I rest on words that seem out of reach or splicing / do I splice myself?
Do I show enough of myself (a comment I was recently given by the aunt) (but what of that comment truly) / am I supposed to show more of myself in my work?
How about this true fear – that if I am to peel too deeply and critique my own process too profoundly that the process itself will walk away from me like an old lover I have only just begun to learn how to lie next to?

Do I feel comfortable with the process processing me – fear not of the ‘you’ processing me – but with my own capturing of the process in my own butterfly net /
is it ephemeral /
is it based on my own strange conscious concoction /
is that why I dropped out of poetry classes in college where I was going to have to stand up and read my work in front of the class / do I believe it is a strange shadow in the corner that comes right through me?
Do I believe that I write or that words just funnel / do I rest on tropes / can there be any tropes after all

This is not to say I feel uncomfortable about the coming words / this is to say – can I make your uncomfortable more comfortable by starting somewhere first / by saying what I think I run away from in my own words /

is it true that you have to pain your way through the process?

Is it organic – the process that I am?

with half the afternoon past on an April 28th

sing a little, swing a little – singe my heart, will you?

i never want to take these smells for granted – the conifer russet, the mulch iron, the fuzzy grace of the lilac and the wisteria. i never want it to be anything other than a 3pm April 28th – curled catnap cat napping in the corner of the porch (radiant and perched, he swirls his body lithe). i never want to be anything other than a friday afternoon, deep spring (phase 4 and a half of spring to be exact). i want the alwaysbreath of the willow to lie with me on the days that are not this day. i want the alwayssky of the April 28th to be my horizon, wrapping around me with silver cord. tucking me in to my little garden bed. sprinkle a little soil on my head, and send me on my way. grow, grow, little one – the sun’s come out see you. to let you see. to let you be seen. come out, come out, little one – seeds are only one of the many many’s you are. you will be. you can be.

wild fire

how do you remain brave enough to feel it deeply, and strong enough to know when to come back up for air?

your skin so luminescent/mirrored pale and reverent/you splay in your car seat staring at the shapes that swallow the sidewalk – we bumble, we rush, we slide through the landscape; the landscape is glowing – satin pinks and lavender spines, trees curled in yellow fantasy. you are humming, your little hairs their own masterpiece. you are mumbling, i am learning always the depth of your spirit and wonder.

little one, i remember when you were womb-swimming and cotton-spun-spinning still, and i worried and i worried and i paralyzed myself with biological thoughts of fear. and the only thing that kept me strong, that kept we away from the black hole of SIDS, of birth defect guilt, of general new-mom psychosis was this image of you that i knew was true. i could feel you out in space somewhere – 24 years old, bold, beautiful, rock solid as an oak tree; burrowed on strong feet; a head filled with ideas; loving someone, maybe; someone loving you, maybe. i knew you’d be okay, no matter what…if i held on to this image in my head of the you that you are. of the life that you’re going to live when your identity is trickled out and seeping/ when you are no longer sleeping by my side. when you are just a memory of a little one and the true, strong picture in front of my eyes can hardly give way to this little splay of muscles and babyeyes. i saw you strong and living – a life of a man (or a woman) huddled on the horizon. i was giving birth to you; but more and less and less about me; more about you; a vessel for your entrance, for your creation. you are your own life, and when doubt and fear swallow me – i see you strong; maybe bigger than me now, firm and wide-eyed; full of wonder and maybe even your own beautiful heartbreak. and your own ways of coping with it. and your own tools, your own thoughts, your own vision. you are a life of your own.

care for children as the deepest souls; the most primal chunks of people’s brain wirings. care for children as magical beings in and of themselves/AND as the primeval seeds of magnificent full-fledged human beings. but they are more than seeds – this image too, is reductive. they are not latent somethings for the future, they are something present here. with their own wisdom, their own existences (fleeting, faster than death; the baby jamie, the jamie at 1, the jamie at 2, all different beings, all one being). they are something here and they are something there. time is a paragon of shapes and keep reminding yourself of the splay of the circle – of all the points laying against one another and not just this one, but how this one fits into this one and this one and this one and that one and how they are all real. they are all meaningful. they are all powerful. they are all magnificent. and they are all people. they are all their own life. not a strange creature come to annoy you or destabilize your precious life and timeline. they are their own life curled around your timeline in the most profound way. the deepest friends. the strangest wanderers. that we will know and know and know more intimately and uniquely than anyone else. because they showed us all the pieces of themselves wrapped inside the other pieces. they showed us the wide open gaseous landscapes of their most honest hearts. their true self within their true self within their true self.

i love children because there’s so much more truth. because social constructs have not begun to constrict and conflict and contort and generally bamboozle the wild fire that sometimes is so hard to feel burning in an adult. whoever said adult life was more interesting than a child’s magnificent world of splaying wonder? fuck the fantasy of adult supremacy – we lose so much when we enter the conditioning treatment of society. and so many falsehoods and so many plays and so much theatrics and so many postures and so much distance we travel from our true, open, brave hearts. for what? for what? the sham of the sham that we all lie to each other and say is more interesting, more true, more fulfilling than the honest, open heart we were born with. we learn to cover, we learn to hide, we learn to subdue, to stuff, to slink away. and why the fuck is that so great? why the fuck?

keep the intellectual growth, the complexity of understanding, the fascinating world of symbols and meanings, but also please, let us learn how to retain the wild fire. please, let us learn how to retain our bravery, our open hearts, our willingness to live, our fearlessness in discovery, our organic and ever-present ability to feel, to commit to feeling. to commit to life.

keep the magic, fuck the pretension. follow the growth – forget the contrivances, the cages, the constructs.

self portrait at 26 of 22

upon being 22
in a nation clean and bright – whistling, courageous but out of step with the sea and the sight of the shoreline
i raged orange peels through paint drips, sallow metro cards, wallowed shoes caving in at the center
i broke my arm in a tiny fissure
i healed my arm on a purpled couch under the overhang of the bypass; painting under the leaky shower where the pink rings stuck on the sink
i tucked myself in to the bus stations; i tucked myself in at night (i fell asleep
in arms or blankets or pillows or on top of the wooden slabs called floor that kept creasing in the corners)
i hurled myself around this suburb called Toowong, i read a biography of grace and goodness traced onto the city steps
i tried to find the culture, sandwiched in between the pacific and the pedestrian – i found my own pretension, i found the pretense that a place is more than a past and present tense
i pressed hard – there was a
road to keep rumbling;
i radiated outwards.
i swallowed donuts/couscous/raw flour mixed with eggs (desperate for cookies but where is the time)/sushi that rolled inside and out

i blend my memories now – toothbrush and horse hair, i swirl them around like a seive
i mirror my memories now – tunnel visioned and circumscribed (i, the scribe, you, the scrivener)
i hunt my memories now – filo-pastry-doughed and fleshswollen – bits of something real comes seeping over the edges of the pot (i always let it boil over, i always let the yeast rise higher)
i bake myself (my self turns brown at the edges if you watch it carefully/burns black if you forget to keep an eye on it/singes white if you remember everything at once)

revel, revel; revere this day

tuck me inside your pocket, i am a breath of earth. soil-curled and wild-flowered, i am a warrior – a sun-shadow stealing through the season. this is the season, this is the one. this is the air i come home to. this is the meaning i come running for. i come running for this season – i come running for the spring. i come barreling out of my body – winter-shed and snow-shaving, i pearl my body towards the newness. i wrap myself around the roots and i hold on for dear life. saying burst, burst. let’s go. let’s burst again.

ecstasy, the rapture. we have all forgotten this. the fragrant power that squirrels in our stomachs. we can weep for the sight of the sun, we can weep for the dew on the grass. we forget, we forget – the majesty deserves your worship. the earth deserves to be kneeled upon, to be kissed, to be honored, to be reveled in. we can worship this season, and we can fall into ecstatic sight. the glow of the light through the fresh lime-green leafbabies/the scent of the blossoms on the tepid wind/the rush of chlorophyll back to the grass graceland/we can fall, we can fall; we can fall to our knees and praise. we forget, we forget, how much it gives back. how much we receive when we give thanks. we forget how much we get back when we honor. when we revel, we revolve, we evolve, we remember. reverence is a certain power. let yourself reap the benefits of gratitude. let yourself revel in the awe, revere the rapture, experience the ecstasy – just a moment, if you like. burst again, burst again. we forget what value worship gives us. because we have contorted, we have connoted, we have conflated, we have elevated ourselves beyond the power of praise. reclaim your ancient rite – for yourself, for your own meaning system, for your own values, for your own sense of what is powerful and true and vibrant and enlivening. make yourself come alive. by surrendering to the great power we find in gratitude. in bending your head to the bosom of the spring field, and saying thank you. in falling in love with the small bud bursting forth next to your eyelash. in falling in ecstasy in the morning – at the sight of the dew on your pupils. fall in ecstasy. fall in rapture. revel, revel, revere this day. revel, revel, the spring has come to stay. praise, praise, the world gives you a say.

Wedding, 4/8/17

I don’t have any shame
about sitting alone at a wedding
tucked into a windowsill, tapping into the bloody bones of a small phone (smart/ brilliant perhaps, but a leash)

The people
wild, hungry,  consuming,  devouring,  restless in the outreach towards the sociability of normalcies and ritual of construct

I have no issue
sitting in a windowsill watching the sun douse the Delaware river in golden flecks of love remembered (a Saturday in April more precious than the reflection of yachts on the harbor)

I recognize the moment
I greet it / I fumble towards it with my palms like fans / I sit in the windowsill / I watch Philadelphia turn crimson. We sing the songs of ritual. We do not call them initiation, we call them wedding words and traditionvows.
I sit in the windowsill.
We do not call it initiation, we do not call it a spell. We have lost our appetite for these words. Now we devour Hibachi-buffet-tempura by the handful and call it a night.
I sit in the windowsill,
I recognize the moment
I greet it

life is a curtainrod

i feel the weight of my own hunger for meaning practice through me like a prayer. i feel, i feel, i promise myself i’ll keep feeling. i’ll keep trying to feel.

i’d like a few more years to be alive, on this earth, please. i’d like a few more springs – i think i’ve got magic to witness, air to breathe, zucchinis to grow. please let me wander a bit further.

i am always a prayer i am always a prayer. you are always a hunger.

here i am bright day, wide sigh, angled curvature of love. here i am wishworld. here i am, bundlebones. life is bold reckoning towards the sky. life is a curtain rod – stable; pulling; hanging; always meaning something.