DRUNK AT LEELA’S

two girls in leopard print chairs
arguing arguments over pbrs
there’s three guys smoking out front
these couches are older than any of us
the loud anger bang music is soft
beneath the sound of
actual fucking conversation
a plate of bones
tilted ketchup bottle
i can feel denver’s heart pounding
these tables bring together lost souls
for reality meetings
fifteen naked lunches
at 10:30 pm on a tuesday night
michael sells buttons and books
glass pane windows
expose the television of flashlight city
the lights glare as the whiskey roars
and i am happy
at peace
desirous of nothing all at once
listening to nirvana
enter a man in a cloak
enter the song of flashlight city
the invisible doorman
shoos away the nazis
hitler crying in the gutters
his make up running
he just wants a friend
we all just want a friend
leela is mine
she yaps music i’ve never heard before in my ear
some band that’s first album was better
she hugs me warm when the lights of flashlight city are dim
she takes my coat for me
kisses me, a humble peck on my chapped lips
and we dance
we dance like homecoming soldiers make love
like painters paint
like graffiti artists run
and i am tweedle dee tweedle dum couldn’t be happier
running the blazing sun flowers into the arms of a
woman who listens to every word we say

i finish my drink

there is laughter echoing into heaven in this house
i feel justified in this horny asylum of color
where you can come and go as you please
i feel justified
as i lay my innocent head upon leela’s naked breasts
and i can hear her heart beat

a heart that says
“i’m alone in here
but i want to be free
i want to hug strangers
i want to inject life simultaneously into all of my
vains breaching the gates that lead to infinity
in the hyperbolic playground of existence”

that is what leela’s heart says
we match tempos
and set aflame together

i too am a heart
in the hand of denver
rocked to stasis by the world’s axis

leela,
baby,
i want to have your children
fill the photo frames of forever with me
please
at least
a cup of coffee?

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “CHICKEN SANDWICH FROM BURGER KING”

CHICKEN SANDWICH FROM BURGER KING

about two months ago
i dreamt that i was eating a chicken sandwich
from burger king
and since that night
i have had increased my intake of chicken
sandwiches from burger king
exponentially

of course
there’s a burger king
on my way home from work
that glowing siren
singing me to shipwreck
right at the tail end of my
ten hour long work
excursions

four days a week
two times a day
i have to drive by that
godless whore of a
burger king
with her majestic
window mural
of a chicken sandwich
shining in the golden light
of halogen heaven

you have to understand
part of me acknowledges that
burger king is a capitalistic
corporate burger-making entity
that rolls obesity down
its assembly lines for insanely
disturbingly low prices
i’ve heard rumors that the
charbroiled taste on their burgers
is less flames dancing on an
all beef patty but more so
a mad scientist emulating the taste
of said smoke
a chemically perfect alternate burger
delivered by a fascist fast food joint
slowly devouring american life
into chunky zombie clones
part of me acknowledges that

but part of me knows that
the chicken sandwich at burger king
is a work of art
worthy of sacrifice to the gods

whoever decided that the masses deserved
to eat their chicken sandwich
on an eight inch long bun
with an insanely correct amount of
mayonnaise
deserves the shiniest fucking gold medal
delivered to their door by aphrodite herself

it is glorious

and now it has snuck its way
into my dreams and i can’t stop thinking
about it and it floats above my head
like a mysterious levitating orb
taunting me as i try to lay me down to
sleep

but you don’t care
you’ve got your own shit
you don’t understand my pain
you don’t understand what i go through
you’ve got your super important problems
and part of me understands and respects that
but don’t you fucking ever claim to know
the pain that i feel
eternally inside of me

this sandwich
this entity
has entered my life
jumped into my soul and it will not let me be
until it eventually kills me
in bloody ecstatic joy
this ebola which is
the chicken sandwich from burger king
with the god damn sesame seeds and all
it speaks to me when the air is silent
it spoons me to sleep each night
this love will kill me

and i know what you’re thinking
this guy is fucking crazy
and what the hell happened to his poetry
but if you were paying attention now you know
my poetry was stolen from me
by this she-devil that is
the chicken sandwich from burger king

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

I TRIED TO SAVE YOU FROM THE RIP TIDE

Wild Coast at Belle-Ile by Claude Monet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

i tried to save you from the rip tide
but you wouldn’t let me
you assured me that you knew how to walk on water
that you knew what you were doing
that she was worth it

i tried to save you from the rip tide
but you were so damn stubborn
you ran naked into the ocean
arms flailing like some kind of idiot
i watched you disappear into the white foam
i watched you pick up the phone and call her

i tried to save you from the rip tide
but i don’t think you believed there was one
you said to me that even if you got lost at sea
you would emerge on a island of oasis
and you and her would finally be happy

i tried to save you from the rip tide
i told you all the fables i could
cautionary tales and ghost stories
i told you of sirens and shipwrecks
but you were so fucking stupid
exactly the way that i was too
exactly the way you wanted to be

i tried to save you from the rip tide
i told you you would be floating there
when out of nowhere something would grab your leg
and you’d looked out towards the shore
but there would be no shore to see
i tried to warn you but you had to find out for yourself
and now here we are
flotsam and jetsam
two idiots lost forever in this rip tide
among the shrapnel of the titanic
and its desperate false love stories

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

SITTING IN YOUR DARK LIVING ROOM, WHILE YOU BLOWDRY YOUR HAIR

and i don’t know how long these things take
but i am quickly learning
across the room
you are wearing a beautiful, flowy dress
like always
your hand is on your hip
as your other hand grips the dryer
as hot wind blows
through your manic hair
the chairs in the living room
aren’t saying anything
the television
is completely off
you ask me
if i want a book to read or something
but i couldn’t be happier
than sitting in your dark living room
while you blowdry your hair

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “SOME FLOWERS”

FOLLOW ME ON FACEBOOK

NO POST TODAY…

peace sign #1

…but please, check out some of my recent stuff.

A BEAR IN TOKYO is a short story I wrote about a strange night I had recently.

AMERICAN HONEY I wrote back in 2012. It’s one of my favorite poems.

Have a great seventh of July, and if you can’t, have a fifth of whiskey. ;)

Love,
Brice

A BEAR IN TOKYO

a factory in denver. we arrived at the manic disco like roided out bulls entering an interstellar china shop. we meandered through the crowd of fairies and monsters
and pushed as close to the alter as we could. all around us faces were crashing together like bangkok cars. there were snake charmers floating up the walls; paid entertainment for the day glow princesses and the queens and kings of the beat. we found our seat and met rabbit who offered to take us with him on his journey but we told him we weren’t big fans of wonderland and were happy just staying where we were, amongst the digital ocean waves and the illusions of heaven. amongst the dirty vibrations and the organic computers of seratonin we hid our beers in the corner where no one would mess with them and we headed out to the dance floor where we swam the technological wavepool.

i was dressed as jack kerouac as usual and she was dressed as bohemian ingalls wilder. there was a group of hissing girls on the dance floor dressed like tim burton mean girls. they danced like sandworms in their black and white striped slinky dresses. fuck-me pocahantas was at the bar ordering a long island iced tea, she asked her boy galactus if he had eaten and he said no he was stuffed from eating planets all day.

i breathed. just took a minute to breathe. i wasn’t used to this much energy. it was a bit overwhelming, like being at a city zoo in a different galaxy. saturn was out on the dance floor spinning her rings and her boy was watching in awe from the sidelines of the space gym. dj gnome was twisting the color of the room so it sounded less red and more blue. i kept breathing, and looking over i realized that i was the luckiest guy in the room, having the company of bohemian ingalls wilder. i asked her how she was doing and she said “fine” like none of this could break her zen. i was so in love. the idea of someone who could meditate at a circus like this was something to admire and something i wanted in my own life. i myself always fluctuate between dalai lama and mad scientist. between cool hand luke and yosemite sam. in a sense, i’m a basket case, but she seemed to be the apples i was looking for to fill the bushel of my psyche.

the red room was spinning. the day glow princess and her royal party hovered over the room looking down at us like electric greek gods. saturn was still spinning her rings. i was getting tired which means i needed to push myself a lot further down the beer spectrum if i had any chance of surviving the evening. i excused myself from boho ingalls wilder and went to the corner where i chugged down three of my cervezas like it was the end of the world party, and for all i knew it was. i felt like i was on the inside of a television. even the walls with all their wiring and weird technology looked like the clockwork guts of a tv. my stomach felt overloaded as i finished the last beer. it was then miss mayor of fuzzytown found me, wearing her official fuzzy sport coat. “hi” she said. “hi” i said. “touch my arm” she said. “why?” i said. “just trust me.” never being one to distrust i placed my palm flat against her forearm and looked into her cosmic empty eyes. i was not attracted to this woman, but it was clear she was attracted to me. why was i so trusting to do what this stranger asked of me? i guess it’s just this writer’s curse: carpe fabula, seize the story. I could never say no to people. “come sit with me” she said. “okay” of course i said. she took me to the next room, less astrological, but far more menacing than the former. the paintings seemed to be changing, mingling with each other. she sat me down with a jester and a man wearing a burglar’s costume. “there must be some kind of way out of here” i said to them, pointing at the joker then the thief, but they didn’t catch on. these were supposed to be the brilliant minds, the enlightened souls, the kind eyes of modern times but it seemed to no one could muster up a damn conversation. i guess at the end of the day we’re all still millenials. we sat there watching act after act of the circus, miss mayor of fuzzytown just kept staring at me and i myself started to feel a bit odd. i knew i had to escape the clutches of this oversized couch. i saw a man, a normal looking young man staring at one of the paintings on the wall; i knew they wouldn’t be offended if i excused myself to go speak with him, so i did just that. he was the aura of normalcy i had been looking for.

i approached him from the side as he stared at a painting of a cow in space and another one of a bear in tokyo. tonight i related to these characters in these paintings. torn from my normal habitat i found myself thousands of miles away from home. i asked him which one he liked more.
“i can’t decide” he said, staring at me. “i want to buy one.” day glow princess had invited me here tonight, and i knew this was her home that these paintings helped pay for – this amazing factory of nonsense, so i went subtle salesman on this unsuspecting cat. “you should buy one” i said vigorously, as to be heard over the roaring music. “these are great.” “i can’t decide” he said again. “i like the bear better” i said. “i think i do too” i said. “maybe i’ll get both.” these paintings were a couple hundred bucks each. i was intrigued that in this room full of lavish bums there seemed to be a wealthy simpleton. “i want to buy one” he said again. “yeah, you said that” i said. “i want to buy one” he said again. i looked in his eyes and thus began my suspicions that this stranger was in fact a robot: with only so many preprogrammed phrases. “where you from?” i asked him. it was time to uncover the truth of it all. “chicago” he said. a robot factory in chicago, i thought to myself, but i couldn’t let him catch on to my feelings. i thought about bohemian ingalls wilder in the next room, realizing i had abandoned a beautiful red riding hood in a room full of wolves. i looked back over my shoulder. the robot man could see i was lost in something. “i’m sorry” i said “what brings you to denver?” “i like to travel” he said, not blinking his robot eyes. “i think i’ll buy one” he said again. “why denver?” i asked, preparing myself for his rant about how weed is legal here and there’s a cultural revolution afoot and how he just wanted to see it for himself “weed, honestly.” he said. i laughed. “yeah… we do have that here i said “chicago is so stuck up sometimes” he told me. maybe he wasn’t a robot after all. “everyone is moving so fast there and it’s almost as if everyone is in a silent battle with each other. denver is just so chill.”

i couldn’t argue with him. i loved this city. always had. it’s like this secret show for one of your favorite bands. all of the intimacy and joy you want and no one else has to know about it, but don’t tell anyone i told you that about denver. “i’m gonna get both” he said. “i think i’m gonna buy them” he said. “you should!” i said “i can grab mallory to check you out?” “i’m not sure if i’m gonna buy them” he said. “alright” i said. i had tried, but it seemed he wasn’t a human nor a robot. maybe an android. i couldn’t be bothered with his android problems anymore. i went back to bohemian ingalls wilder.

surprise surprise a man in ultraviolet briefs and a hugh hefner red robe had found a seat beside boho ingalls wilder. she had those big scared listening eyes as he explained to her the nature of the universe, how we are all one, how there is but one consciousness and she oh so politely took in the lesson, as if she hadn’t heard it all before. “hi” i said to him, politely, i did leave her alone in the room after all “hey i’m rocket” he said to me. of course he was rocket. “nice to meet you, rocket” i said “how do you know everyone?” “i don’t” he said “i was just over at eskimo bar across the street and heard music so i wandered on over here. the factory, day glow princess’s kingdom, had open admission to their events. anyone willing to pitch the few bucks could get in. it was a bit jarring to see these people at a birthday party, who were unaware it was someone’s birthday. rocket went right back to his pontification to boho. boho gave me the help me look. “wanna go grab another beer?” i asked her. “yes” she said.

we went to the bar this time. through the course of the evening i had killed the six pack i had snuck in. “two pbr’s” i said to the octopus bartender. boho gave me a look as the bartender fetched the beers with her tentacles. “what?” i said. “pbr’s?” she said “you hipster you.” “look” i said. “it’s not that i want to be a hipster. it’s just that i’m not rich enough not to be, if that makes sense.” she said nothing. she was one of those quiet ones where every thing she didn’t say could drive you crazy with curiosity.

“what do you say we sneak out back with these?” i asked her. “sounds good” she said. i threw the bartender the total and the best tip i could manage and boho ingalls wilder and i snuck behind a couple curtains, climbed a very unsafe ladder, and made our way up to the rough. i was feeling fairly romantic, and then i felt the midnight wind outside. i snuck up first, so i called down to boho and asked her if she minded. she didn’t mind. of course not. this girl wasn’t one to say no. the romantic man who lives in my heart was break dancing. we sat on the roof top on some wooden crates and we didn’t say much at all. i’d say we stared up at the stars but in the light pollution of denver there weren’t really too many stars to be seen. we watched the cars drive by below and then i looked over at her.

“i’ve got a question for you,” i said, gathering myself, “is this a date?”
she smiled. “a date?” she said.
“yeah” i said “i always do this to myself. i ask girls to go to things with me and i mean it to be a date but i never tell them it’s a date and i never know”
“you always ask girls on non-date?”
“that’s not what i mean. but is this a date?”
“no” she said “i didn’t think of this as a date.” the romantic man who lives in my heart proceeded to die of a heart attack.
“oh” i said, the saddest living man in denver.
“i’m sorry but my heart belongs to someone else” i wanted to think what she said there was stupid, a cheesy way of saying ‘i’m seeing someone’ but there was a sincerity there i knew not to fuck with. her heart really did belong to someone else. had i been trying to trick her into a date with me? why couldn’t i have just said ‘this is a date.’ that’s all i had to say.
“i appreciate you being honest,” i said.
“i try to be honest” she said, “i don’t like the games, you know?”
“yeah, me neither.” i looked up at the sky. “it’s still nice to get away from it all with you up here.” she smiled at me with that brutal sincerity.
“cheers” she said, gesturing her beer neck towards me.
“cheers” i said.

it was strange to think of the monsters lurking and the peacocks peacocking below us. the bass slipped through the ceiling to the roof but barely. everything in me felt like i should be in the mindset of disappointment, but escaped from the circus below, just sharing the company with such a beautiful person left me with very little to not be grateful for.

we winded our way back down the ladder. she took off, giving me the longest, most fearless hug i’ve ever received and i was left with the leftovers of madness. she had vanished. i made a pillow of my jacket and i fell asleep, wondering if i was entering or leaving a dream.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

READ “ALARM CLOCK”