UNFORTUNATELY HONEST

drunk on caffeine i escaped out into the night
hands in pockets i began to walk through the forest
of my fingers into the clearing of my palm
where i looked up at the great ether of my own
two eyes above me
and therein i saw something calling back
the shadow of my own giant looming over me
but the anxiety still called so i kept pushing it out
through my feet
and i moved through the blood in my arms
down its red path
until i came to the great stonehenge
of my dismantled rib cage
white stones torn asunder i sat beneath
the tree of my gut
and there i climbed in and waited
until the poet left the home in my heart
through a little red door
completely naked and covered in paint
he danced like it was someone’s birthday
and me in peacoat and dress slacks
and pinned in with belt and exhausted
i jumped down from the tree
and with my great long scarf
wrapped around my hands into fists
i swung the fabric over his neck
and there in the moonlight
that poured in through the hole in my throat
i strangled the poet lifeless
and i was so sure what it was that would happen
i was sure i would ring out some great eulogy
from the lips of the dying poet of me
and i was sure they would cast into the dome sky
of my internal organs and radiate from my bigger body
like caffeine
but the poet said nothing
nothing was said but it wasn’t quite silence
and then it was over

i didn’t bury the poet that was me
nor did i say grace for the fallen stars
that he cast from his dry heave mouth
dim shining with the looming reminder
of the guilt
the same guilt he carried with him
and now i
but now wordless
just kept walking off the caffeine drunk
but the headaches are so bad
and when you can’t sleep all you can do
is walk and walk and walk and walk
and hope that somewhere out there
is the magical monster you’re after
that after all is just you hiding in a peacoat
and dress slacks
or in some poem that you wrote
when you remembered that’s something you do

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

MILLENNIAL BLOGS A LONG WINDED AND UNFOCUSED RANT

First of all, there’s no such thing as a millennial. It’s something your mother made up to scare you. Sure there’s positive and negative attributes pushed on millennials but the bottom line is those negative attributes end up creating dissonance between different generations. I have made a point in my life to not identify generation y as generation y or the same for baby boomers. They are just persons. Peoples. Individuals. Folks. It is insane, especially in a time in history that feels as if it is moving so fast, to think that you can put people in a box. To think that any one quality exists among a group of people is ludicrous, not to mention, in my humble opinion, a huge factor as to the disconnect that exists in our society.
I think that the world is so big that the only way we think we can manage it is to label it. Maybe labels are useful societal tools, but I think it’s much more likely that these labels we fling out are lazy ways to categorize varying opinions on groups of people who in fact are barely even groups of people. They are just humans huddling around the fire for warmth.
And good for them. Common interest is the breeding ground of society, but remember this: everyone loves food. I think it’s impossible that anything has brought humanity together more than food. Maybe sex, though that’s debatable too. My point is that we can build up common interest as reason for separation from other people, but at the end of the day we’re just slowly surrounding ourselves with people who are more and more like us. No wonder we are such a polarized world. I think the big thing is to break through perceptions, find the people you’re afraid of, and talk to them. I’m not saying to find the evil dictator and ask him out for a drink, but I kind of am.
I witnessed a conversation at work today between two people with very different political affiliations and it was one of the most respectful things I have ever seen. This is what the world asks of us. To not think we are right, and to remember that the person who believes something so different from you has needs that are not being met too. So say something. Get outside your comfort zone. Make sure we keep talking to each other. And I mean talking. Wars are made from people who are too afraid to talk to each other. End rant.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

this
is the way that the world
fell to its knees when they came
to take the brains
of the children who punched
through the lampshades

poem
of pills and sugar
wild worldly master of technological
filth unorganized yet so organic
and bitter

is
the ear the slave to the sound?
or is it the other way around?
who pens the monologues that
expand through time and space?

bullshit
i say. what did you get from it all?
did you come out the other side
feeling clean? feeling holy? did i
stamp upon your soul some sacred
orgasm of thought? i cannot say
first impressions are important.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

A STRANGE PHENOMENON

it was a strange phenomenon. the way that
your insecurity ate away at your sweater
like moths. each second a little more of
your soft curves revealed beneath the
material war being sieged around your
looming aura. your fingertips lost in
brushstroke against the walls of a dying
dream. you were an entire ecosystem.
creating while you destroyed. earth
rattled around your apple core while
you projected angel dust onto an
unsuspecting audience of time and
space and there you were moving
through the compartmentalized
rooms of my lungs like the smoke of
sage through a haunted house.

blink
and there we were four hands gripping
the reckless drunk wheel of death
and speaking tip of tongue to tip of
tongue. speaking amphetamine binge
of life to sweet holy surrender to
honesty. speaking i.v. drip to punctured
vein. speaking holy new gold moment
to fourteen reincarnations of stars come
to fruition in sparks. flying drawn together
but at the very last moment lost. to a wall.
so blatantly before us the whole time. and
so we learned how to dance in the blind
dark.

and some glowing sun rose over the
graveyard where we buried our tension. i
tossed and turned without a blanket and
underground until this flood of light lifted
my one million bones to the surface where
i found two choices. and i took one maybe
even older than us. maybe even older than
this soil these musical notes that ramble
incessantly now in my head. that is the one
i took.

and you disappeared like a ghost into
a fire and i consumed by another life and the
fire you went to wrap around your life was red
satin and when it was too late i unwrapped
you and you twirled and you twirled and you
were down to bare skin and you twirled and
you twirled and you were down to brittle bone
and you twirled and you twirled and what
i saw before me was nothing but the empty
space that created this strange phenomenon.

so now i set out on a sea of trouble unable to
rationalize this idea of love not believing in
love. of a doctor not believing in medicine. of
a dancer that doesn’t trust the body. a painter
that cannot see the color in the dead canvas.
of a portrait of love stuck in still life. unable
to see itself. or see at all. or see at all. a strange
phenomenon. a blindness from refusing to
ever stare into the sun.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

YOU ARE NOT A FLOWER.

you are not a flower.

you do not rise
from the soil
like some dandy little
spark of life

you are not
overflowing
with green vanity

you just are.

when spring hits

you do not bloom

you do not rise up

from the cold winter

to burst forth into
some spectral showcase
of expressionistical color

you are not some
kaleidoscopic
manifesto

you are not
in constant competition
with the bright roses
around you

you are not
in constant praise
of the sun

your tongue is not
held out before you
drinking in
the ultraviolet rays
you’ve been fed

you do not
think of your roots
as being for
gathering life
into your body
like stranger prayer

you are not a flower.

you bloom inward
you burn circles
in your living room rug

trying to find
unidentified life lying
in the widening crack
of your ceiling

you lick the salt
from your wounds
and watch your hands
swell

you waste days
you boil water into boredom

you’ve torn your roots
from the bureaucratic soil
of bureaucracy

lifted
your two-dimensional legs
from the blueprint
they laid out for you

and you’re not always
so beautiful

you don’t have
the distinct privilege
of a best laid plan

you are something else

seedless
fruitless
without petals

you dance best drunk
and to heavy metal

you are not a flower.

you are the crayon
that walked to the edge
of town
and outside of the lines

and when you bloom
it’ll be in the middle of winter
in the middle of the night
and you will not bloom delicate

you my dear
will bloom fists and fury

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

METAPHOR.

metaphor.

meta,
from greek
defined as being “beyond.”

phor,
also from greek,
meaning “to carry.”

a metaphor
is something carried beyond.

or maybe
something beyond carrying.

for example:

america
is a bullet that never stops
being fired

or

silence
is the noise beneath
the constant sound
of screaming.

metaphor:

to help give life
to something
by comparing it
to something
else.

a name in itself
can be
a metaphor

see:
Emmett Till.

see:
Trayvon Martin.

you see,
history repeats itself
and you could say
that
is a metaphor
except sadly
no
it’s not.

it is literal.

literally
has recently been
reclassified to mean
figuratively
as well as
literally

because

people
have for so long now
been misusing
the world literally.

literally 50 people
die from gun violence
in japan each year.

literally 10,000 people
die from gun violence
in america each year.

this has literally
got to stop.

this is un like
anything else.

there is no
cute comparison.

there is no place
for figurative language
when escaping reality
is the easiest thing to do.

this is a truth
that is beyond question.

this is a fact
that is well documented
in the esophagus
of every endless
news feed.

this is what we
digest.

this is what
we put on our tongues
like daily communion.

this is heavier
than metaphor.

this

is a weight

that is beyond

carrying.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

MA JOLIE

so pretty the roads that lead to nowhere
so handsome the dim sky in winter
the grey snow on the sides of highways
the trash and needles in abandoned buildings

so unforgettable are the eyes that poured into yours
some great transference of sad souls before splitting like atoms
so beautiful the squirming amoeba beneath the microscope
beauty in the smoke that rises from the trainwreck

beauty in the heart that cringes up and stops
beauty in buildings collapsing in slow motion
there is beauty inside the reels of fast motion too
when you blink and the hand reaching out is gone

so pretty a dream achieved and the silence thereafter
a standing ovation a wind-down an empty auditorium
a bus packed full of strange people who do not exist
a walk up the stairs to the hanging rope of a table
with only one chair

so beautiful are we the chorus of the slowing dying
so strong the song we sing as we rock our own cradles
as we dress our own wounds as we dance the way
that we are supposed to dance at a funeral

we humanity are supposed to dance at a funeral
we’re supposed to dance on hot coals and cold beds
we are supposed to dance over the ghosts in voicemails
the dark flowers that bloom when we’re never ready

we are never ready to be thrown against so much beauty
we never think that we will be the victims of so much love
we never think that we will be the victims of so much love

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

MY SOFT TONGUE ROLLED OUT BEFORE ME

wherein my tongue rolls out before me
like a great delicate scroll of paper
like a languid love letter yellowed with time
each syllable a worm digging through my stomach

and the crows come along
and they pick at my lengthy tongue
each one snagging a small segment
of my soft pink honesty

my raw delicate marriage to uncertainty

and when the crows have had their fill
i cross the warped floorboards
of my crooked house
teetering on the top of a thin mountain

wherein i roll my tongue back up
into the hardware of my guts
the strange wiring of my innards
where sparks fly like desperate traffic
at an intersection

and in my jaded bed i dream

i dream of a reality where i do not question
the period beneath my question marks
where the laws all make sense
and more than strange suggestion

i dream in worlds where the bleeding hearts bleed

a great still lake where each and every pixelated
square is covered by handcarved canoes

and when ever the wind blows through
the canoes move in succession like music
and the storms come and the storm passes
and when it’s all over the canoes sit still

never having to flinch at a raised hand
or a dark comment or a loud voice
just canoe after canoe on a vast quiet lake
moving in succession like music
through time and space
through grey thought and afterthought
my soft tongue rolled out before me

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

LETTERS

So,

I’ve always wanted to do something like this, so I’m going to start light. I like writing at someone else’s prompt. I used to hate it, but after writing a lot of poems you start to learn your own tricks and themes and sometimes it feels like you’re writing the same poems again and again. (Good chance to write something completely outside of your comfort zone, in my opinion.)
Anyways, I would like to say, if anyone is interested, send me an email at bricemaiurrowriter@gmail.com and tell me a little bit about the poem you would like for me to write. Could be just one word, a theme, a style, anything is fine. Just give me some kind of prompt. I am going to choose my five favorites and mail out poems to those folks. I can’t wait to see what you guys come up with and see how this goes. I’ll keep it open for one week! So send your requests on over! This should be fun.

Please include your mailing address! Can’t wait!

-Brice

AMNESIAC

are we so quick to forget
what happened yesterday?
we walk
right foot left foot
one behind the other
in swift reverse
after each step we take
the broom and dust pan
and wash away
our footprints from
the dirt

we take bleach
and ammonia
and we wash the blood
from the carpet
we scrub vigorously
at the vivid reminder
of that one time
that we blacked out
and did some shit
we shouldn’t have

we got so drunk

wouldn’t you hate
for us
to get drunk again?

a contraption!
a mirror put behind
our backs
so that when we look
behind us
all we can see
is the future

terror
is the pill
of the future

it’s what
we wash our mouths out
with

it’s what
lulls us to sleep
beneath the sound
of

well, you know
you can hear it

if you just know
that you could die
at any minute

so where
are we?

who
do we now
pretend
to be?

where
can we go
when we live
on the hollow point?

we dip
our calloused feet
into
an acid bath

we bingewatch
the deathclock ticking

now packaged
individually

priced to sell

i forgot what we were
talking about

must have slipped
my mind

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015