02.22

0222

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(where am i?)

i woke up
and out my window
were the dusty chinese lamps of chinatown
mount fuji
off in the distance
covered with the snows of kilimanjaro
cold and ancient
i found myself in a foreign land
where the night cafes were open until dawn
the city glowing in the rain

the dusty roads leading to neon casinos
and water clear enough to see to the bottom
there was an identity to this place
though i didn’t know what it was
maybe a western mindset of eastern philosophy
there was something about the way
the snow covered the ground
like the weather wast trying to tell us
we can start over if we want to
or we could just throw all the cats in a bag
and shake it up

i began to feel sea sick
it was as if the palm trees in the distance\
were swaying with me
to the acoustic ringing of polynesian ukulele
and the old, old buildings crumbled
like pixels of my sanity

when in rome, they say,
do as the romans do

so i went down
to fisherman’s wharf
and i rented myself a fixie
and i rode it through the winding streets
the narrow dark back alleyways
over the grassy knolls
and down martin luther king blvd.
and when i felt burnt out
i retired in the night to a pizza parlor
this city really does never sleep
it’s so big
and there’s just months of sunlights
and months of night

to think slaves made these pyramids
it was so damn cold
and i was stuck in bermuda shorts
lost in the cocaine triangle of denver

i could barely see across this wide wide river
full of caymans and pirahnas, the fish and flauna
and memories of you
you
lost on some distant star of a planet

i wish you were here
we could go see the savage matadors
murdering the innocent bulls

i wish you were here
i guess technically you are

it seems everyone speaks their own language here
the oceans are so blue
the grass is so green
the continents all fit together so nicely
like those hotel rooms
with nothing between each other
but locked doors

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ 02.22, THE NEXT ENTRY IN THE 02.2013 PROJECT

02.2013 is a twenty-eight day project chronicling my february of 2013 through poetry. to read the entries from the beginning CLICK HERE

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02.02

02.02 jpeg

(nightmare.)

and on the second day he rested

went in for a nap and found himself slipping like alice
and when he landed on the other side
he landed on the sideways concrete of san francisco
chinatown at night
outside of a chinese theater
he was drunk dizzy disoriented
lost in hills and chinese lamps
drunk couples kissing down back alleyways
over his shoulder he heard the voice of his father
standing up and dusting himself off
he turned around and sure enough it was him
white smile his father hugged him
and he asked him what he was doing here
but it was a dream and he couldn’t remember
and they walked down the sidewalk together
and they laughed at san francisco together
a girl on her cell phone yelling
“i’m just too LA for this place”
and he turned to his father and said
“what a bitch…”
and her friends came out of nowhere
and they asked him what he meant
and because it was a dream
he tried and tried to defend himself
against the twentysomething feminist women
who outside of dreams he loved so dearly
but they wouldn’t hear him
they just wouldn’t hear what he had to say at all
and the tension was so damn high
and their faces so damn hurt and angry
and eventually they just went off their separate ways

the women still mad at him, his father quiet
and then his father was gone
faded out of the dream like god had plucked him right out

it was night
harsh night now
he was alone in this foreign city within a foreign city
no idea where he was
no money for a cab
nowhere to go if he could get one

and he stumbled to a friend’s door
somehow
by some miracle
in the drunk dizziness of this dream
and he knew his breath tasted of dirt
and his clothes were stale from the day
but the friend she opened the door
and she let him in
and she made him a cup of tea
and he sat quiet in her sideways san francisco apartment
beside her san francisco fireplace
and he drank the tea
and she brought out a man
and he knew right away he wasn’t a good one
he had a shit eating grin
that seemed to say he was footing the bill
for a broke twentysomething girl in san francisco
and this man
his handshake was as flacid as his congeniality

the apartment was dim
nothing to look at
no stories in photo frames
no messy proof the place was lived in
the place was a nightmare

and it only sunk deeper
a flickering rampaging light grew outside
and the lost boy in san francisco
found himself looking out the window
at a creative bonfire
a giant burning sign on the grass below
“YOU CAN’T JUST THROW AROUND “BITCH””
and in this nightmare
this inescapable nightmare
this misunderstanding
this dark dream that felt too real to be shrugged
he found himself on the wrong side of history
his father gone, lost in the bay
his momentary lapse in judgement
making him a sacrifice to the movement of times

there were coolers behind the flaming sign
twentysomethings gathered and drank pretentious beers
talked about progression with honesty
speaking frankly, bonded in their hatred of him
but he was barefoot on the cold concrete patio
behind the metal bars fifty feet off the ground
and he knew in the next room
his female friend, a sister really
had been dragged off by the man with the shit grin smile
door closed, she probably just laid there

he ran out the door
found his way back to the chinese theater
and he banged on the door
it was a saturday night
and people were coming and going in mass
but he couldn’t get in
he knew they were all in there
his friends, his family, his father
he knew that the protesters would find him
with their picket signs and their need to cure misogyny
and he was afraid of it

he was still barefoot
his father never showed up
he didn’t think he’d ever find him
the city hated him for what he wasn’t
he couldn’t go where he wanted to
his sister of a friend
was locked up in the arms
of a poor excuse of a man
he was stuck in limbo
he was stuck in limbo
i don’t know if any of this is coming through
i don’t know if you can hear me from the other side
but it was a nightmare
there was just nothing to grab onto

and when he woke up
he was sweating
sleeping in a room with no windows
at his parents house
his duffle bag splayed open on the floor
his life in boxes all around him
he sat up and breathed the air conditioned air

just nothing.
thank god.

he went downstairs
waking up from that dark coma
and his sister, his actual sister
offered him a cup of tea
and she asked him
“how was your nap?”
and he said to her,
“i had a nightmare.
i didn’t think i could have nightmares anymore
but i did
and it was terrible.”

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ 02.03, DAY 3 OF THE 02.2013 PROJECT

02.2013 is a thirty day project chronicling my february of 2013 through poetry. to read the entries from the beginning CLICK HERE

THE HOUSE OF GOD

someone’s in the kitchen playing the guitar
lovers in the bedroom reading dead playwrights
someone’s in the shower marinating musicals
someone’s in the basement carving up god’s face
angels in the mirror slipping into dresses
someone’s in the garden impregnating the soil
someone’s in the laundry room painting up a portrait
demons in the cellar pending on funeral flowers
someone’s in the billiards room punching holes in walls
someone’s in the closet interviewing skeletons
someone’s in the fitness room chiseling skin
pergatorians in the elevator shaft making urgent love
someone’s in the dance hall staring into eyes
someone’s in the sitting room spitting stand-up
someone’s in the coat room closing their curtain eyes
someone’s in the skull commanding the hands
this is the house of what is, not what is not
this is the house of god.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ “WORD SALAD”

MAMA, I AIN’T SAD (I’M JUST SINGING THE BLUES)

i can see you now
in a nighttime gown
by a windowsill
with that mother’s frown

but mama
i tell you all the time
and it’s always true
i ain’t sad
i’m just singing the blues

i know you worry
but mama, i’m grown
as long as there’s blues
i’m never alone

this is just my way
of kissing goodbye the day
it’s just my right
to stay up every night

cause mama
i tell you all the time
and it’s always true
i ain’t sad
i’m just singing the blues

that telephone ain’t gon’ ring
after darkness falls
but mama, won’t you hear me
that i thank you for it all

this is just my way
of kissing goodbye the day
it’s just my right
to stay up every night

but mama
i tell you all the time
and it’s always true
i ain’t sad
i’m just singing the blues

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “RUINED A PERFECTLY GOOD MOMENT”

MIKE TEEVEE

the weeks are slipping away like high school romance
we’re left with spare change and hangovers
and time and again someone to celebrate the day with
we’re depositing our hearts into swiss bank accounts
when we should be selling them on street carts
we should be listening to one another
but the air is polluted with wifi networks, with
bluetooth signals, with awkward silences,
with televangelistic exorcism

the air is polluted with the sound of all the wrong things
and the coffee shops are full of wolves in hipster’s clothing
the tables are all reserved
and all the empty houses are not for sale
three hundred million bulls in one giant china shop
three hundred million cats in a burlap sack
three hundred million people
trying to pull the actors off the television screen
and put them in their pockets and purses

a nation full of jabbering jaws
a nation full of broken ears

a nation full of kids
who ran away from home

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “THE KIDS’ TABLE”

CLEVER SALT SHAKERS

that poem’s gone
it was
good intentions

tonight
sitting in a
basement with tickering
lovebirds
it’s starting
to feel
like home
again

there’s a
paranoid hum
this
air conditioner
breeze about
but
that’s
probably just the
apparition of my
something

it’s starting
to feel
like home
in the
apartment
again

for a while there
the walls were
shifting
like
the inside
of a rubik’s
cube

my books
were going
missing
the sun
was a lamp
that could be
clicked on at
midnight

everyone, everywhere
ever
all at once
felt like
strangers
to me
but the adderall’s
dissolving
down
the
drain
and my eyes
and his eyes and her eyes are
smiling

i must have been
punch drunk on rust
and lust
for a month
but that

was two months
ago

a month long hangover
can be
a god damn rattlesnake
a
punch to the
throat

i’m barefoot at night with my
barefeet on the dizzy table

i want to paint a painting of this
painting on the wall

what i really wanna do is
kiss humor
in the back seat of a
cramped
compact
car

i can’t get over April
she’s this
lost month lump
in my throat
bermuda triangulation
i’m so lost at sea
let May crash on me like a
mack truck

i’m wearing my favorite jeans
hearing “Imagine” for the first time
skinny-dipping at
Sea World
i’m
dissolving
down
the
drain
like the Adderall

it’s starting to
feel like
home
in the
apartment
again
all the
junk the
laptops and
books and
bowls and
bags and
deceptively empty
Mountain Dews and junk
seems to be in
it’s place
again

there’s the air again

that computer
breath

(i don’t know where this is going)

but blindfolded
people are
often pushed
to
surprise parties.

the world isn’t
round

it falls off
at the
horizon of
neighbor’s fences
where we become
afraid
to talk to
the mutants in the mirror

it’s
starting
to feel
like home
in the
apartment
again

the whole place
swings
like a basonet

this thing’s gonna
end
like a crescendo

this apartment’s home and you all
are little kitschy items, snow-
globes and candy
tins, handsome whiskey
bottles and
clever salt shakers
sitting
on my
kitchen
shelf.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “EFFIGY”

NEWBORN

I locked the doors. Padlocked chained bolted shut the god damn doors and the outside world – cracked wide open a window and I threw out every letter, every picture, every moment of anything that ever meant anything to anyone. Indiscriminate. I took a hammer to the clocks. I threw my watch into the fire. I stomped on a fucking egg timer to make sure there was absolutely nothing left to make that tick tick noise. I shoved open my desk drawer and cut straight down my cheek with a razor blade. I felt nothing at all. I littered the floor with random papers, bank statements, grown-up homework like I was decorating a psych ward. I flipped the couches on their asses, I punched my fist through the television set. I unplugged the fridge and let the useless food begin to rot. I ran all the sinks at once. The gaudy shithole apartment sounded like Niagara Falls. The pipes moaned from pressure and bursted. The ceiling soaked like blood on bed sheets. There I was between fire and water. Between everything and nothing, leaning like the Tin Man back and forth. I felt nothing and it felt so god damn fucking beautiful. I put my rosary down the garbage disposal and hummed along to the sound of God dying. I broke my glasses in my hand like random twigs. I stepped on them like fire ants. I took my mother’s urn off the mantel and shoved it on the ground. I spit on the ashes. I turned on all four burners of the stove. I ripped my brown one-eyed, on-it’s-last-leg smiley-ass teddy bear into bits and sprinkled it on the hot coils. My eyes watered something other than tears as smoke clouded my blurred vision. I’d never seen more clearly. Broken dishes like bad memories and I smashed drinking glasses like I was allergic to thirst. I tore the carpet up and found that buried underneath was a whole lot of nothing. In a matter of what may have once been an hour, I turned a home at war into a mausoleum of peace. I put a record on. It skipped, I watched it mutilate itself. I felt nothing. Not a single drop of loneliness, confusion, anger, turmoil, fear, pain, hate, joy, love or indigestion. The record just kept skipping. I felt nothing and I hardly felt that. And then you walked out of the bedroom, wearing only my business blue banker shirt, you’re legs stemming out underneath like sex, and I fell to my knees on the torn-up carpet and I cried like a newborn fucking baby.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “WINTERSONG”