No Known Cure

I have been diagnosed with a heart condition:

valves weaker than cheap aquarium tubing,

rhythm patterns orchestrated by strung-out heroin drummers,

blood flow controlled by a pump mined from a landfill.

Back-alley doctors recommend a transplant while misguided friends play roulette for a donor.


I pull the sheets up over my head, content to be a case study in the journals of love.

Copyright 2015





Someone Wicked This Way Comes (A Halloween Innuendo Love Poem)

I want to grab your stem , carve you like a pumpkin

Scoop the fleshy seeds out of your pulpy core

Roast them in my oven for a late-night snack.

I want to sculpt your grin like a jack-o’-lantern,

Using a flick of the wrist, a flip of the whim

Shape your lips into the mouth of my choice.

I want to create the cast of your eyes

As wicked and decadent,

Abandon you totally to a haunt of despair.

I want to hold my breath in baseless superstition,

As I lodge my pagan fire in the hollow of your shell.

And I want to trick your treats

Under this absent midnight moon.

This eve belongs to lost souls and sinners.

Confession and contrition are too holy for us now.

Copyright 2013

(For the Ninja of Japanese Beetles)

Genghis Khan At The Typewriter

Genghis Khan sits down at the typewriter, a portable Underwood.

His tortured soul desperately tries to conjure up a Mongolian metaphor for love.

It is a task of barbaric proportions.

Mongol is, as yet, an unwritten language birthed from bone and mayhem.

The sounds are raw and feral.

No font can cage their nature.

But the Great Khan, Universal Ruler, senses a sonnet steeped in The Steppes coursing somewhere under his leather-laced armor.

Certain tribal concubines have indicated this to be his heart.

They have placed their tiny bird-like hands over his iron chest and summoned forth strange visions.

A heart!

As if the Great Khan, master of Central Asia, scourge of China, has need for a heart.

Empires are carved out of destruction, death.

A heart!

A heart would be a liability, a stigma of weakness.

And yet?

Genghis feels an unknown creature course through his veins and stop to drink at the place where the concubines held their tender young palms.

His coarsened skin tremors at the memory.

And so, Genghis Khan, Emperor of Oceans, sits at the typewriter, a portable Underwood, hands bloodied with conquest, body still suited for war.

He sheaths his emotions in strands of silk and sends them forth like arrows of unspoken words in search of prey.

These weapons are of a language that cannot break, complicated, strong.

And once embedded in the heart, the tender teasing of the twisted silk opens words into poetry and the wound seems insignificant.

Copyright 2013

(For Bryan, who loves history, even when it’s invented)


We both knew this day would come, when I would be forced to testify, to confess our conspiracy and reveal the naked body of evidence in all its seductive sedition.

I have aided and abetted you as a willing accomplice for so long now that there is no more felony left in my soul.

Yet I will not perjure myself with words dredged deep out of the mouth of another.

Nor wil I bear false witness in a hostile second skin.

Rather, I will enter the kangaroo court lip-synching mercy, stuffing innocence into pockets of new testifying pants.

(Dedicated to Stuie, who never had to wear those pants.)


I am Prometheus, bound to my words, while you, my crow, devour my heart.

I am Prometheus, chained to contrition, while you, my accomplice, accept stolen fire.

I am Prometheus, lashed to a legend, while you, my raconteur, transpose paladin and pariah.

I am Prometheus, standing before you, hair singed with sacrifice, fingers charred with circumstance, the mortal smell of potter’s clay caked upon my soul.

I am Prometheus:  creator, thief, and penitent.

Can you promise to be Hercules and free me from myself?

Copyright 2010


You are my diary, keeper of secrets;

My pint of tequila, obliterator of past.

You are my center, sacred space of focus;

My birthday, my deathday, my moments between.

In a world of uncertainty, you are reality.

In a world of delusion, you are but dream.

You are the second I take before jumping, the sharp intake of breath before I free fall.

Copyright 2010


Thoughts of you drip from my fingers and everything I touch becomes saturated.

I don’t remember you as anything more than arid and barren so how did this happen?

When did drought manifest into deluge?

And yet here I stand, holding cupped hands, while memories of you flood between my palms, drenching my fingers and soaking  through my life.

My shoes are soggy now and everywhere I go I leave wet footprints of you behind.

New lovers make me wipe my feet before entering their lives…but I still leave a puddle of mess.

This would strike me as ironically amusing if I wasn’t so dehydrated since you left.


He had no sense of direction and couldn’t read maps.

Perhaps that’s why I found our relationship constantly returning to the same spot, our lives circling the drain of devastation without being sucked away.

It was all I ever knew and, of course, I never knew much.

Then you sailed in, with your Magellan eyes and Marco Polo ways.

You with your perpetual passport, natural navigation, and global goodbye:

     – smelling like Babylon

     – tasting like extinction

     – looking like danger set loose from a trap

How could I resist what I never really knew?

So I let you take me by the hand and lead me to Bohemia.

I left without baggage, not even my conscience.

Sometimes I wonder if he notices I left him.

Sometimes I wonder if he ever received my postcard.

Probably not.

I never bought a stamp.

Copyright 2010


Hand me your love and I will make it my novena.

Give me your grace and I will let you save my soul.

One touch from you and I am healed.

One trinity of words and I am redeemed.

Bless me with the sacrament of your salvation and release me from my sin.

There can be no amen to this miracle of prayer.