Monthly Archives: January 2010

Writing Is Hard

I tried to write a football sonnet once,
all manly and full of references
only real fans would catch. It was so bad.
So then I tried to write a fantasy
football sonnet, hoping to verbalize
the underlying camaraderie, and the
way it parallels true aspirations,
but holy shit, that one was somehow worse.

Finally, I spent three weeks trying to
write this masterful poem that would draw
everyone together, not just fans,
but even my friends who hate the game, too.

It sucked. I got drunk and wrote this instead.
I’m not sure who would read it, anyway.

it’s hard to be a badass when you’re in love:

hide white rose bouquets in your shotgun case,
nuzzle burnt cork stubble on her tender face,
stroke velvet cheeks with your torn leather glove,
romantic surprises from skylights above,
crash through her window, wait in a dark place.
your shattered glass snowfall leaves not a trace
except on her bed, where arrangements there of
botanical art hide the jagged-edged blades
that cut into her, leaving scars in the shape
of each mystery land she imagines you rove—
her knight in drab armor, the one who once drove
her home on his motorbike, a team solitaire race
against reason and rhyme, against time, against space:
oh, it’s a hard to be a badass when you’re in love.

i shall defend your name…

Everyone feels the air pulled from the room, from the force of the first blow. I feel every inch of my body reflectively launch itself towards the body with arm mid recoil.  You fall back, eyes closed, jaw dislocating, but worry not; because vengeance is already being enacted by the eight pairs of fists that walked in the pub with you.

A lethal combination of alcohol and loyalty will irrupt in a fury of right hooks and rib shots.  It doesn’t matter what words were exchanged, who was truly insulted or injured because these are irrelevant now.  The only fact that concerns us now is that there be a physical representation of our allegiance to you.

Within moments my ears are ringing with the symphony of shattered glass, fractured ribs, and tables dismantled by the weight of human flesh.  There is sweat already burning my eyes, and the strong taste of copper in my mouth.  I can’t see whose winning but I’m certain none of us are losing; at least no more than the opposing muscle.

When they finally pull us apart, when we are thrown out of the establishment our middle fingers in the air, you’ll laugh, telling us it was a lousy drink anyway.

…and with that we’ll move on to the next place that will have us.

Christmastide, Los Angeles, 2010

On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
the coat that I lost New Year’s Eve.

On the thirteenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
a clearance on nativities.

On the nineteenth day of Christmas my true love said to me
outside it is eighty degrees.

On the twenty-fifth day of Christmas my true love came with me
to buy a pair of soccer cleats.

On the fifty-second day of Christmas my true love said to me
I wish this town had Applebee’s.

On the eighty-third day of Christmas my true love begged of me
I wish you would stop drinking please.

On the one hundred and first day of Christmas my true love gave to me
a basket of chocolate bunnies.

On the one hundred and eighty-second day of Christmas my roommate gave to me
demands to turn on the AC.

On the two hundred and fifty-second day of Christmas my mother mailed to me
a birthday card filled with money.

On the three hundred and thirty-sixth day of Christmas I traveled to Jersey
to visit with my family.

On the three hundred and sixty-fifth day of Christmas my brother gave to me
his jacket so I wouldn’t freeze.

On the three hundred and sixty-sixth day of Christmas my family gave to me
twelve pounds from eating
eleven random gift cards
ten pairs of boxers
nine books of poems
eight rounds of car bombs
seven new dvds
six video games
fiiive excuses why I should move hooooooome
four snowballs to the face
three sweatshirts
two I’ll never wear
and a dream of the warmth of Cali.

The Ghost of Prescience

i open my eyes to a brand new life still sealed in the original package all those gi joes that I would batter as a child rather than save and sell off to pay for college reminder that it loses value opp out of package and i see she left the price tag on the way that people accidentally do when they not so secretly want you to know just how much they spent three human lives and a broken heart plus tax unless of course she bought it in new hampshire i incise the shrink wrapped plastic with the key to my sisters nineteen ninety six nissan altima it has the best serrated edges on my keychain makeshift cutting too rip the rest away with my wild clawing hands a creature tearing the net in which it is captured squeeze the shreds of all that remains in my left hand crush roll into a ball discard in the trash can pick up my new life and try it on before i remove the tags and immediately i feel thirty pounds fall away shatter on the ground like some cursed vase or ceramic lantern smashed to break the spell free the genie get a wish i look at myself in the mirror just to make sure that it looks right and as my hands regain warmth feeling melt away the numbness of the winter as it has been my dimly lit reflection whispers its alright its all right its alright its all right its alright its all right and this time i think i believe it

rational behavior…

“I’m tired”, she says in her usual manner.

I’m tired too, so rather than asking her what might be inflicting this malaise I merely stir my coffee and search the table for another cream.  This quest isn’t necessary; the coffee is already a nice tan color yet it seems a much better use of my time than listening to her.  This will cause problems however, so I decide to be a slightly better boyfriend.

“Why are you tired?”

There is ever so slight of a pause as her left eyebrow raises.

“I was wondering how long you were going to take to ask me.  Really Connor, I question how much you care sometimes.” She begins to get that look in her eye.

It’s not really a stare, or a gaze, her eyes don’t glaze over and there is no real noticeable difference to anyone who hasn’t been in this kind of relationship. She keeps it a secret to the general public.  My recommendation, don’t date her…or anyone if you’re smart.  It’s better just to pick someone out of the crowd and ask them to marry you.  While this might seem ludicrous to the normal social customs, let me explain my reasons for this approach:

1.     It seems romantic, so at least your new bride or groom (if things pan out) will think you’re sweet and slightly crazed, but anyone who wants to get married is usually member of both those catagories.

2.     You’re chance of picking someone who is compatible to you is slim, but you have about the same odds in a normal dating situation.  At least you won’t have to worry about them changing; since you didn’t know them before your impromptu proposal.

3.     You have picked them solely on looks, so again this isn’t much different than a normal bar outing.  However, instead of a one night stand, you’ve picked up an old lady to worry about how much time you’re spending at the bar.

“CONNOR?!”

I’ve stopped listening again.  I even seem to have abandoned the search for more cream, considering that there were only three possible places for it to hide.  I look up from my coffee, which I have decided is more interesting than my girlfriend at the moment.  She looks pissed…this is understandable though.  I can’t really blame her, and then I notice something that I didn’t before.  As I pick up my cup to receive some reassurance from my caffeinated friend, I am confronted by the fact that my suspicions are correct, I’m about to be dumped.

Now average folk about to lose their girlfriend of three years might be about to cry, or wishing that they had the power to turn back time, or better yet wishing that this diner served alcohol through an IV.  I ,however, have decided to take a much better approach.  Just as the words escape her lips, just as I hear;

“I think it’d be better if we separated, found ourselves a little more first”

I do the only reasonable thing I can think of…I pour my coffee into my lap.