Tag Archives: mental illness

The Ivory Tower That Welcomes The Lost

Las Vegas is bright by it is light invisible. There is nothing revealed. There is no warmth.

The songs of my youth, of infatuation and sorrow, call only ghosts whose teeth draw blood.

All night I was awake. All that came were bad memories. Aching for sweet things lost.

Nothing soothes this longing, for what I once held close, and for what’s never been.

The sun is coming up, and to the east, away from the city, it is blinding.

On the edge of the desert, a square of green dead ends into coarse sand.

Stately and new houses already abandoned, and I was late to the party.

Their are only ghosts here, and skittering shadows inside that don’t know my name.

Coffee at a kitchen table in a house that looks cozy, but demons ruin everything for me.

All my treasures and comforts offer nothing, where I have only time, and my buzzing thoughts.

I can remember the girl that bought me the poster for some obscure Russian art film I loved.

But she is gone, and I am here, and I can’t find where my new friends are waiting for me.

Coffee in a travel cup, a thin sweatshirt and sweatpants, and I’m heading to the desert.

There is an angel there, there is a tower of bright light and ivory, where she welcomes the lost.

She will hear the honeyed prayers and grant me rest, show me the way back to a home in this world.

Out in the desert she waits, the sun would not lie to me, would not lead me astray.

But still, there’s a gun in the glove compartment, if I’m let down one more time.

Dive Bomber On I-40

The trucks heading down the highway in the dead of night
have the high pitched, almost nasally wail of a German dive bomber.
I drink hot coffee, fresh from the pot, knowing I should sleep,
but I can’t sit still or lay contentedly. Like the trucks, I got to be somewhere.
Hot coffee, bitter and black, a harsh and sensual pleasure,
like the filterless cigarettes I gave up long ago. Hot and pummeling
on weak and soft flesh. It somehow makes me feel real and whole.
There is no one here to make me do right. No woman to invite me back to bed.
Dive bombers, on and on, hitting distant targets, distant cities.
My coffee, my inability to dream of a better world, only kisses and lovemaking
and the ghost that is in all flesh, and all birth that is the tears to come.
I don’t know how people can lose themselves in the sun.
When the suns come up, the raids will continue, nothing rectified.
I try to think of a woman, one I know, one I see online and in magazines,
someone to build a momentary kingdom around, a queen to serve faithfully,
and in return she’ll keep the cold and anger and rage safe in her septre.
The trucks roll on, and it’s a cold spring morning, and the sun has come,
laughing his cruel vengeance on my tired eyes, and washed out heart,
and they drop their bombs of mercantile items and promise of wholeness
and I bought into for so long, and I know have no idea what else to do.

 


 

Walking Home To Cambridge

Walking home to Cambridge, leaving London, leaving the lights,

those shining places, that thunderous sound, those lovely young girls.

I saw the face in a shadow and it walks with me as I’m going home again,

but home is not the place for me now; only my mind holds any dream for me.

 

The leaves are golden and yellow and bright, bright red, the sky a soft blue.

I dream of Emily dancing in the grass. A song playing seemed like it told everything

as she turned to me and smiled, long chestnut locks falling over her wicked eyes.

I dream of making love under stars, her softness and warmth, not that she left me behind.

 

The road is endless, and even when I’m back in my Cambridge home, it will travel on.

The road doesn’t end at the door, or in my bed. There’s not a woman wailing for me with

welcoming arms and a kiss on my grizzled cheek. Not a woman here to wipe away my tears.

I’m traveling down that road even standing still, with the shadows and demons picking skin.

 

In my old room, with that plastic rocket ship and tattered poster of Marilyn Monroe ,

the records grown dusty, the bed weighed down by the universe and the scoured mind.

I hope in dreams I can catch Emily’s hand again, and call her down like an angel of devouring.

Dreams, the only place to run, the only refuge in a blacked out mind. Count the cost of desire.

The Girl Who Came Before Thunder

The mad heart flies to the to heaven,

to the eternal and tender blue above,

to the dreaming sky that can soothe

it’s sores and scars and pinprick kisses.

The stars where the soft angels singing

in the quiet moments when dreams

crashed on shores sparkling in moonlight

and a girl who came before thunder held me.

In my dark room, sleepless, stockpiling wonder

as the time trickles like blood from tips of pens

and the invocations and memories they write,

to make a roughshod heaven of my disgrace.

And the stars weep ice and cherry blossoms,

as I call her back, the last hurrah for innocence,

to the empty place in my bed, and I call back that kiss,

that came too late to save me, but was only sweetness before death.

The Refusal of The Stars to Call Down Angels

A fat, broken down old man I am,
out at this cold and godless hour
walking my snow white wolf-dog
because my home, my room,
had become torture, brokenness,
The Devil never quiet or letting me be.
A week, I’ve stopped craving cigarettes,
but still too much booze, in fact, I swig
from my hip flask, potent Russian Spirits,
and feel a deceptive warmth, rushed stillness,
a giddy dream from burning tomorrow,
burning the morning when I could be useful.
A young woman, maybe 19, short brown hair
and a milk pale face, blue eyes as deep and pure
as an ocean I saw once, with a young woman,
maybe 19, who loved me, took me beneath waves
and laid kisses and passion upon me, and I have
worshipped her memory evermore, evermore.
A young woman, she looks up at me, lights up,
ecstatic and running towards me, it’s the wolf-dog,
who is jumping in place and shaking her head, howling,
as the young woman crouches before her, shakes her fur,
and makes baby voices at her, and my wolf-hound
licks her face, nuzzles her face, is in love forever.
“Such a sweetie!” the young woman exclaims,
“Such silky fur! Such a good girl!”
And I watch them together, wishing love was so
easy for me to show, to give, to be carless with it
and throw it around like confetti on New Years Eve
or candies on Halloween, which past, and it is cold.
“Thank you!” I say, take a swig of Russian Spirits,
as the young woman stands up and offers her hands.
I take it and we shake, and her palm is soft and warm
and enveloping and has never known a days hard work,
and I am jealous and sad for her, and still feeling stirrings
of love and reverence, even though I am old and left behind.
The young woman blows my wolf-hound a kiss, smiles at me
and waves goodbye, and hurries back to her friends who are
boisterous and laughing and doubtlessly heading to mischief
and shenningans and things that will either shine in the stars
or burn their flesh and dreams forever after the morning.
I watch the young woman and her friends move on, gone.
My wolf-dog lays down, head on her paws, whimpering.
More Russian Spirits, more defeated prayers, more solace
in Winter Cold and refusal of the stars to call down angels
and my wolf-dog, like me, falls so easily, so perfectly,
for kindness and enthusiasam, and a touch giving kindly,
even though they hurry on to something better, something brighter.
There will be no sleep tonight. There will be no peace. Wolf-dog will be at my feet.

Cuts Like A Childhood Kiss

She stands, sad, as far away as heaven,

in her stylish black tank top and jean shorts.

Her long, thin arms are strong with nothing

but their own hands to hold, disobedient children.

Was there a demon or angel walking by,

whispering in her ear or blowing kisses?

Was there a ghost, of something traded

or cast aside, golden apples rotten in windfall?

Then she’s “ON”. The smile sweet from her

harsh face, that cuts like a childhood kiss.

Angel and demon made her, and her light

is the eclipse half-light, crimson and bitter.

Cameras steal a piece of a moment, make a

soul a quotation and shard in the eye of men,

and the lonely or just lustful, or those all three.

A piece of a soul, a moment, to embrace the world.

Then she’s “OFF”. The mermaids swim to the top of

her thoughts and bring the leviathan tagging along,

the waters between dreams and flesh and what comes after

all lined up and bleeding her thoughts, but only sadness shows.


Child Of The Sun


Draining Light, Late Afternoon

The Devil is in my head, draining the light quicker

than the sun falling from my window, late afternoon.

Not even the thought of her, or the half empty wine bottle,

or the lamenting aria, can make me quiet, or feel anything.

Afternoon on a wasted day, and I wish I could sleep, sleep

until The Devil left for some other poor fucker, and I might

smile thinking of her kissing me, or delight in soft drunkenness,

or know the sweet sorrows of an aria for unrequited love.

The Devil steals all joy and light, but Jesus says I am an unworthy kind,

or all those assholes on TV who love him do, and so I put what tatters

of faith or hope in the one who loves me, even as the afternoon goes dark,

that what Shard of Eden can be found in my brokenness, comes from her touch.

Garden of Gethsemane

The Garden of Gethsemane, on a sleepless night,

Feeling as all light has fled, even starlight has turned

It’s back, the moon fucked off too, just the glow of

A phone as I try to distract myself from how I feel.

 

In the garden, no disciples or companions stay awake,

No one to help soothe The Devil whispering, picking,

Trying to push me to something drastic, foolish, irreversible.

Take revenge on a world of fools, or just put yourself in the ground.

 

A video, a wholesome young woman modestly dressed, sings

Of Jesus and his love, but I don’t feel him near, he won’t stay

Up even one single hour himself, but I listen to her sing, her joy

And her adoration, wondering if it’s joy or a betrayer’s kiss.

 

In the morning, if I make it, if The Devil doesn’t win this night,

And I’ll try to hold onto the light of this young woman singing,

Her heart pure and so sure of the light that fell dim on my eyes,

As all around me the world burns and His Children stoke the flames.

The Sweetness There Was In The Stars!

The rain is the only soothing thing in the night.

               Maybe I’ll turn on the radio to the classical music

               Or the sappy love songs that let me dream of

               A sweeter, more beautiful world.

 

               These nights when I cannot sleep, full of dread,

               And regret but not the tears that could wash it

               Away and let me begin again.

 

               Way back in sophomore year, before I pulled

               A Lucifer and fell from grace, pulled and Eve and

               Took that forbidden knowledge, I dreamed of

               Her, and my heart was full of wonders.

 

               I stayed up all night, playing that song on repeat,

               That made me feel the warmth of her, the light of her

               On my heart even when though she wasn’t there,

               Just conjuring the life I wanted to live with her.

 

               What wonders the world and love held then!

               What sweetness was there in the stars!

 

               All these years later, the night is bitter as almonds,

               And it’s hard to find sweetness in the life I’ve come to.

               Scraps of the otherworld that use to come so easily.

 

               I turn on the sappy love songs, trying to call that girl back,

               To call back my own innocence, and sweetness of youth.

              

               I hear that song that I made a hymn to her.

               Finally I find some peace, and some sleep.