Sunday, January 30, 2011

Poem Where I Am Cold

Dear Mom,

When I told you in the morning
I had “pocket-called” you
the other night, at 3:32,
I was not telling you the truth.

I had actually left my bag somewhere
and had locked myself out of
my apartment building
and it was cold
and I was drunk
and I didn't know what to do
and the snow wouldn't just
shut the fuck up and let me think
and I thought you could maybe
think for me.

J

Dear Mom,

Actually, I'm not finished.
I rammed the building door
for a while, with my shoulder,
without getting in,
so I rammed another building's
broken door, and got in.

And I slept there, in the hall,
in the fetal position.
Not crying or anything,
just cold.

J

Mom,

I put my headphones on,
and slept very badly.
I don't know what I listened to,
it was soft.

I unscrewed the hallway light,
and felt very tired and cold
and repeated “God didn't mean
to make me like this,”

which is just a thing I say.
You know I don't believe in God.

J

Mom,

A nice man woke me up
at, I think, 7. He asked
if I had somewhere to go.
I told him yes, and I went
to the BP. I thought it
was really nice of him
to ask that.

The leasing office
opened at 9.
I got the spare key and
told the woman (not nice)
that I would bring it
right back, and I didn't.
I went inside
and slept all day,
and into the next day,
when I got your message
asking why I'd called you
at 3:32.

Dear Mom,

I think I mean to start
all of my poems that way,

especially the poems
where I am cold. It is probably
something to do with looking
more like you than dad (I suppose
you'll recall that you never
breast-fed me, so if it's not
how we look, I don't know).

I think probably all poems ever
ought to be read like that,
with the “Dear Mom” implied.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

this morning when i was running to my car i slipped and fell on ice and snow

lemon poppyseed cookie from 'robeks'

i just thought 'this might be my last... winter, like, with heat, or...' while lying in bed with my neck 'propped' against the headboard of the bed with a pillow

then i thought something like 'all of the things... that go like, un... un... like, unnoticed or... like, unappreciated... like... ziggy... or...' while feeling a large degree of sarcasm and confusion

earlier, i walked downstairs

in the kitchen, i saw many bagels and a vegan lemon poppyseed cookie from 'robeks'

my mom said 'dad got panera bagels'

i looked at the bagels for a period of time while thinking 'i...' and 'what the fuck is this shit...' and 'apple...'

i looked at apples and bananas

i ate the vegan lemon poppyseed cookie while standing in the kitchen and staring blankly at the space in front of me

i thought something like 'poppyseed... doesn't that like, cause... drug test... opiates... but... weed though' in an incoherent, vaguely 'annoyed-with-myself-for-being-so-retarded' manner

(i think there should be a word for that. a word that means 'annoyed with oneself for being so retarded.' that would be good.)

i don't know

do other people get emails from '@sbcglobal.net' email addresses telling you to send your information to them to claim your [large quantity of british money]?

i have gotten 3 today

Thursday, January 13, 2011

SWEATY

I'm walking to class because I just can't miss it.
I don't want to exhaust all my missed classed excuses
this early in the semester.
It's so cold outside that I layer myself:
2 pairs of socks, 2 pairs of leggings, 2 long sleeves.
My legs are sore as I keep tensing up with every
step I take to school passing

slick little snow mounds, and poorly cleared sidewalks.

The trip there has become in its own right an obstacle course.
By the time that I arrive to class
I feel like I resemble some sort of sickly, fatigued looking American gladiator.....
 breathing heavy as I find a place to sit,
 sweaty as fuck,
as the snow keeps falling.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

My Dad Used To Be A Marxist, Or At Least He Had A Poster Of Him On His Wall, But Actually Thought Of Himself As A Leninist

My Dad Used To Be A Marxist, Or At Least He Had A Poster Of Him On His Wall, But Actually Thought Of Himself As A Leninist, While He More Closely Resembles Stalin

My dad is a connoisseur of cigars, guns, and nutcrackers.
He sleeps with his shoes on, upright on the couch.
We said, the cat looks too thin, he is going to die soon.
We are all going to die soon,
as he continues biting the heads off of snowmen cookies.

On Christmas my Aunt touched my boobs.
I can touch them if I want when you have them out there like that!
I was wearing a modest sweater.

Later, my brother said he hoped his girlfriend would get him a peacoat for Christmas.
My aunt thought he said “penis,” but why
would his girlfriend get him a penis for Christmas?
I’m pretty sure that is the one thing he definitely has.

My sister danced like a leprechaun,
doing a jig, my grandmother said,
You should drop out of college and work at a strip club!

I had just woken up.
How much have you been drinking since I was asleep?
Girl, you’re so pretty I’m gonna put you in a sack and throw you into my trunk.
What is going on.

Holiday trivia games with my aunt just make things worse.
How many tentacles does a squid have?
100
An octopus has 8, how many tentacles does a squid have?
100
It’s not a centipede.
Oh, then 2.
It’s not bipedal, it’s not going to get up and start walking around.
BIPENAL?! Now, you never mentioned THAT.

No, nevermind.

Monday, January 10, 2011

drinking and driving in minnesota

behind my car
is the place i pissed without
even looking at the ground

and behind there is probably an alleyway
but id rather piss on you in the shower
while im laughing

gently and steadily
while you avoid one warm stream of water
among so many

and i pause thinking i should finish
but keep going
in an attempt to defend what i just did

whatever
it was as funny as it could have been

i know

i wont laugh anymore
and go wash your feet alone
it's so cold in here anyways

PIECE OF WRITING ABOUT ALMOST SHITTING IN AN ALLEY

while i was out for a walk i lost my keys.

i walked around looking at the ground but i couldn't find my keys.

i started to feel like i had to shit.

it became real to me that i might have to shit in an alley.

i've had to shit outside before but never in an alley and never during the day.

when i thought i might have to shit in an alley, i immediately took a deep breath and thought, "you can do this, you are strong."

Thursday, January 6, 2011

it started snowing again

looked out the window this morning
and there it was
snow

it started to fall again

the last three days were strange

a lot of coffee and alcohol

last night i told everyone the truth about me

how i had no morals when it came to sex

it wasn't a good audience for such ideas

sometimes when you're drunk

you forget who your audience is

when i was little

i found out i really had only one talent

it was to know my audience

i could figure out motivations quickly

don't know what exactly happened

or when

but realized at some point before

my growth spurt ended

that everyone was pretending

but behind these pretendings

were something concrete

don't care if it is genetic or if the first five years of human life are so intense on the brain that we can never really escape.

knowing that fact for sure really won't change how I behave

not good at math, hell not even good at grammar

but good at figuring out people's motivations

at knowing my audience

which has led me to behaving like an actor

we are all actors
but i behave like an actor on top of an actor

then after awhile

after some drinks, usually the hard stuff

i stop acting and the concrete me gets let out

my mother always yelled at me, "You're half british, the british are stone cold Noah, don't show your emotions, emotions are a weakness."

My mother always told me emotions are for the weak, and when people see you have emotions they immediately take advantage of them.

It was a British thing to say

We must never forget that Great Britain gave birth to Hobbes, Locke, Hume, Burke and Smith. The stone coldest of all political philosophers.

Looked at my sleeping girlfriend after looking at the snow that covered the cars and parking lot, then went downstairs to read.

I was slightly hungover and felt like nothing good could come of all this.

i didn't know what 'all this' was.

the 'all this' seemed very real and concrete.

Went to make coffee and it tasted like vinegar.

So I drank orange juice.

Read the ending of Antiquity by Norman F. Cantor. My favorite historian.

I don't know what kind of man has a favorite historian.

not the kind of man my father raised.

Norman F. Cantor at the end of the book talked about the remaining sites of antiquity that remain, the huge buildings where thousands of ancient people sat and gathered together

then he wrote, "The poets and dramatists and philosophers speak to us for antiquity, but those little sites of prayer and entertainment memorialize the millions who came and went, always silent, and now forgotten."

The first thing that weird me out was the use of the word 'for' when he says, "Philosophers speak for antiquity."

He didn't say 'of' or 'about' or 'from'

a lesser writer would have used those words

but 'for'

what a strange little word 'for'

Norman F. Cantor was saying, everyone is dead, long dead, so dead that nothing remains of their lives but vague ideas.

But these writers, these people who used language as their medium spoke for everyone if they knew it or not, they were sending a message out, this is what we were like, this is who we were.

Then Cantor writes at the end, "the millions who came and went, always silent, and now forgotten."

I like his use of commas at the end.

I liked that he wrote a two hundred page book that took years of solitary and classroom study and finished it with this simple sentence. It was the last book he ever wrote, he died soon after, maybe this last line was his epitaph.

the ending is simple.

There were people once

ancient greeks, ancient jews, and people living under roman rule.

They had lived their lives under these institutions

they were slaves, oppressed women and powerful men

there were farmers and merchants and generals

playwrights and poets

shitting in outhouses, dealing with imperial armies and being part of imperial armies

babies were born and taxes were collected

and now they are gone

all gone

they died

"always silent"

after reading that line i went back upstairs to lay in bed with my girlfriend, my living, very real, very present girlfriend.

i was overcome with 'feeling' after reading that line and didn't know what to say

i didn't really want to exist after reading that line

i wanted to go somewhere and maybe become One with the universe

i couldn't deal with reality

so i just became sad, stared and was despondent.

told her i had to leave

cleaned the snow off my car and drove home