Tear Me Down

I tried to build a bridge
out of the wall that kept falling 

apart and reassembling itself 
over and over like a broken record 

but it turned out there was no need 
because all around us was only 

undifferentiated matter and not even 
a gulf of polluted water to traverse 

we could make do with a leisurely stroll 
or a tin can apparatus to communicate 

even sending photographs to be developed 
on the laundry line out the window 

But when the music breaks and confetti 
litters the stage like our tears down our face

all I know is the recognition that we experienced 
the same as we together sobbing embrace.

Unicorns Aren’t Real

And that’s that
No you can’t 
turn around 

in this drive thru
We’re all going 
in one direction 

and that’s towards 
a sour sugary grave 
topped with whip 

and pink powder 
taste the rainbow
and synergy of 

a billion billion 
Instagram posts
that no one will ever 

get around to liking 
only silently tagging
themselves slurping

When She Sings

Many times a song
gets stuck in your head 
and it’s there to stay 

Years later you may 
be thinking of a person 
you haven’t seen in years 

and they’ll appear as 
an off rhyme chord change 
and suddenly you’re 

singing falsetto to yourself 
up and down the stairs all day.
Sometimes it’s worth it 

to make up new words 
for a change, perhaps 
instead of her name 

you might substitute 
the way she smiles and turns 
her head when she sings.

Evidence for the Big Bang

If I was one for 
arriving at metaphors 
before they’ve hatched 

a kind of reverse 
Easter bunny, or 
the moment in those cartoons 

when the ACME box 
arrives and you know 
an explosion is coming soon 

I guess I would say 
were it not for the chip 
on my shoulder 

a literal micro potato chip
you would know 
I’ll always be here 

evidence both for and 
against the Big Bang
that keeps leaving debris everywhere.

You Are Better Than You Think You Are

I’m not sure who it was who said 
you can tell who is a true friend 

in your life by how much time you spend 
apart when you get back together 

you pick up right where you left off.
That is how it is with you and me.

It wasn’t always so. Anxious, I spent 
hours wondering what you thought of me 

when I could have been taking care of me.
It’s true you can only love others when you love 

yourself. That is how it is with most 
sayings like that, they are true because they are

true. There is plenty of time for guitars 
and mandolins and ukuleles and 

front stoops to say everything, or nothing
at all. Just being here means we’re okay,

that neither of us are lonely, if we 
don’t need or want to be.


When recovering from a trauma 
of unknown origin and indeterminate 

duration, the best you can do 
is reflect on where you were 

one year ago: this is when I awoke 
in the hospital, this is when 

I knew the seasons were changing, 
this is how the world raveled itself 

back into something resembling a shape 
outside the circumference of my head

Sometimes the thoughts are fastened down 
to the bed, catatonic and nowhere to go

Sometimes it seems the story keeps moving 
only this time you know it’s a fiction 

an unbearable episode made endurable 
only by reclaiming the pulse you were born with.

Easter Walk

Everyone seemed to be 
on their porch or yard 

or retrieving or collecting 
things to or from their cars 

kids fell down in the grass 
dogs passed each other 

sniffing for places they’ve been 
it’s not like we need 

an especially warm day 
to bring us all outside 

at once but obviously 
it helps to know that surely 

this is the only day we have 
for when we look inside 

there’s nothing to be found 
at least nothing is as

we expected it to be.

Early Bed

Adjusting to the fact 
of sickness 

keeps a certain rhythm 

it’s easier to just 
forget bedtime 

as a construct and
start sleeping 

as fast as you can 
and then 

when you’ve slept 
awhile enough 

go ahead and sleep
some more 

surely the next day
will wake you 


Everything Is Awful But Music

I don’t know
if we know
what human bodies 

require anymore
when solitude 
reaches its limit 

and noise persists 
just outside of 
the frame but 

if chord changes 
and turns of phrase 
are to be trusted 

then I am content 
to rest my head
slightly next to yours 

as we sway 
and the lights 
and the smoke 

carry it all away.

A Finger Pointing at the Moon

Today a dandelion
peeked in between 
the pavement and brick wall 

as if to announce 
to anyone who will notice 
the arrival of spring 

a few yards away 
they were already cutting 
the grass using tools 

that run on fossils 
buried far underground 
that if we spend unchecked 

may one day blot out the sun 
I took a picture 
of the dandelion to remind 

us of what was as sure 
as it appeared before 
vanishing like the rest 

of the known universe.