KEROUACIANA #1

I was napping under the freeway in the bone city of Los Angeleez, when a man walked by and he stopped and he asked me “Who are you?” “Who am I?” I said. “Who are you?” “Who are we?” and next thing I knew we were in his flat uptown, drunk on red wine, listening to Charlie Parker through the radio. Charlie was manic panic writhing up and down his saxophone beneath the electronic fuzz. The man who took me in paced around his apartment aimlessly. He was a strange man – his books scattered across his cigarette floor. I asked him what he did for a living and he pretended not to hear me, I’m pretty sure.

The wine hit us hard and we laughed at the Bodhisattva residing in our hearts. We laughed at fleeting enlightenment and we bonded over cold Chicago. I passed out on the dirty floor, but in my haze, I heard his girl come home and ask who I am and they riffed for a minute, her asking if I was another junkie and he said “No, well, I don’t think so,” but they calmed down and I faded to black again.

When I woke up, I was alone in the apartment. A note had been placed on my chest “Don’t worry about locking up. No one would rob this shithole anyways,” and that was that. I gathered myself and caught the next train out of the city of angels.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

READ “BREAKUP WALTZ”

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10TH & OSAGE

the night rolls on
like a silent film

it flickers like old home movies

and i am shadow
void of vocal cords

i am lost in denver
in love with denver
awake in denver
forever in denver

where life is
the slowest american speed
possible

where you be
and people accept that you be
where stages erupt with talent
in the shittiest of dive bars
underwater

just waiting for the wave to crash
this giant frozen wave
this tsunami lost in time

lost in denver
love with denver
awake in denver
forever in denver

in love with the story
that it weaves around me
in love with love
and you
uncatchable jellyfish
away from denver

the north star forever in motion
one thousand lives away

that is you
and i am astronaut
space cadet
chasing infinity by the tail

circles in the sand
lost in denver
where lights reflect on lights
where we cannot see truth
so we make our own
from whiskey and fire
from moonlight and confusion
and death sets in the west
just down the california way
but we lay on the frozen grass
and don’t think about it
we just hold our breath
and count the stars
and lose count
and don’t start over
when we lose count

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

READ “YOU PAINT YOURSELF IN RED AND I PAINT MYSELF IN BLUE”

i blink and

i blink and
one million people pass by me
at one million miles per hour
as stupid flowers bloom
and brilliant cities are planned
and corrupted
and born again
from the genesis of tragedy

i love in the moment
i mean
i try
but i get lost at sea
with my technology
and my telescope
that can see the wall
at the end of the universe but
only from the perspective
of my sight

and there
sitting on the wall
at the end of the universe
is a manic pixie dream girl
my answer to questions
i should be able to answer on my own
but unfortunately
not all of us are born
philosophers and tech gurus
some of us are just born
starry-eyed idiot boys
forced to pace around our rooms
for 40 days
with no water no oxygen
not an ounce of television
just us our love
and the exhaustion of staring at the
ceiling

i wander drunkenly down the halls of
harvard
i love voraciously as i fall asleep in a bathtub
in your heart
i drive myself insane trying to recreate
the something that maybe
but possibly
maybe not?
i fall asleep with a lampshade
on top of my enlightened head
in the bathtub
of your heart

(what the fuck is he talking about?)

i blink and
i am lost in some sea of angelic
monsters

i blink and
i am shooting downtown
in a metal death shuttle
piercing the skin of den
ver

i blink and
i am lying in bed
reading 10,000 pages
of a murakami novel
not about you
my room was hit
by a tornado
and i really couldn’t
give a shit

i blink
and my sister is marrying
the man of her life
i blink
and she is rosy-cheeked
and happy
and barefoot
and pregnant
and still in love
and she cries at her son’s
graduation
and she holds her husband’s
hand
and she holds her husband’s
hand
as they ascend into heaven
and i blink and i
blink
and i blink
and

i channel surf
the million lives i want to
live
and don’t think about
pink elephants
you’re thinking about pink elephants
aren’t you?
and don’t think about death
oh wait

i blink and
i am driving to saint joseph
to save my lover

i blink and
i am playing pinball
until four in the
imaginary morning

i blink and
i am in the car crash arms
of my saint joseph lover

i blink and
i am playing the white album
backwards

i blink and
i am swimming in my mother’s
chicken noodle soup

i am swimming
in a bathtub
in a hotel room
in your heart

i am charismatic
and charming
and almost out
of anxiety pills

i am down to
my last
anxiety pill

i am
my anxiety pills

i just
don’t know
who what where
when
why i’m at
at the moment
in the
sand dunes
in a hotel room
in your heart

i blink and
i am billy pilgrim
who has come
un
stuck in
time

against my
mother’s wishes
i have stared too long
into the eternal sunshine
of the spotless
mind

i am
jim carrey
in eternal sunshine of the
spotless mind

i am
kate winslet
in eternal sunshine of the
spotless mind

i am
hiding from
the velociraptors of reality
in an oven
on a dinosaur island

i am love
(i should always take a
moment to remember that
because it reminds me
that there is no such thing as
incorrect or irrelevant
or unimportant
you are important
you are too important
and the things that
you say
create waves that last
long after the moon
has blacked out drunk
remember that)

remember how beautiful
you looked
in my rear view window
as i went so very
not fucking gentle
into that good night

i blink and
i am watching my friends
sail away from the shores
of colorado
into the distorted audio
of california
into the arms
of jack daniels
into the eyes
of spiritual materialism
into the death star

i blink and
i am wallflowering
so very well
i am so very good
at wallflowering
when i want to
wallflower
and for the longest
i felt terrible
about wanting to
wallflower
but if time
the liar
has taught me
anything
it’s that i’m allowed
to wallflower
we move
so fast
even when
we’re not in
motion

i blink and
i am beneath your version
of the stars

i blink and
i am doctor gonzo
on a two-week
sociology binge
where the windows
are shattered
and the doors have
been busted open
and i am taking notes
on the human disease
and its beautiful
afflictions

i blink and
i am listening to a
tape recording of your voice
telling me nice things
about myself
and i am still
out of anxiety
pills

(i blink and
I turn off the lights
and listen to
something
and i meditate on
how people would speak
if words were as expensive
as college)

i blink and
call my mom and dad
on my way home from work
in zero degree temperatures
in november where i live
to tell them i love them
and i want to see them
(and i want to see you)
soon
i’m sorry i’ve been busy
and feeling very anxious
and honestly
i feel like if i blink anymore
i might miss

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

READ “FUNERAL”

TO MARLA

i think about it sometimes
messaging you and saying
“wanna take off
where we left off?”
i would play charles bukowski
and you would be marla singer
and i would attack you
the moment that you walked
through the door
your coat hanging recklessly
on a chair somewhere
thumping footsteps up the stairs
the bedroom door slams
and there we would be
young and stupid in an instant

afterwards i’d crack a window
so you could smoke
i can’t stand cigarette smoke
but i’d stand it anyways
and you would be coy
using your arms and legs
to cover yourself
and i would just lay there
and stare up at the ceiling
and the stucco images
that don’t really seem to form
anything
just random images
there for the sake of being there
and in one moment
sunglare piercing
i’d see your eyes grow wide
as mine grew small in their reflection
universes expanding
contracting
and i’d be in love
incredible original love
then boom it would be gone
and i’d realize
that i don’t want to play
charles bukowski
and i would offer you breakfast
no
i don’t think i could
offer you breakfast

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

READ “TINY LITTLE MOVER MEN”

DRESSER

i’ve had this dresser for over half my life
wooden six drawers little knobs on the drawers
rectangular it is so very rectangular
and i love the thing really i do
it’s hard not to love something that’s been so loyal
and in my room i’m lying on my floor for some dumb reason
and i say to the dresser “i don’t know why i love you, dresser,
you’re just a vessel full of all the things i’ve gathered,”
and the dresser says “just like you, asshole,”

that was the last time my dresser and i ever spoke
but i’m not going to get rid of it, obviously

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

READ “NOT ENOUGH WATER TOO MANY BEERS”

NOT ENOUGH WATER TOO MANY BEERS

i’ve had
lots of conversations with women
in my life
i am not the type who is afraid
to look em dead in the eyes
and call them on their bullshit
but the thing is
i am the type who is afraid
of getting twisted up
in the bed of a woman
who i don’t really love

so often times
where other men would pull
them in
i tend to have to draw the line
i know too damn well
what it is that i want
and a conversation is one thing
but waking up naked
beside a woman who you don’t know
and it doesn’t matter
you could ask one like this a million questions
you’ll never know her
but waking up naked
beside a woman you don’t know
is another thing entirely

i have seen conversations run dry
i have seen myself flourish
giving a woman i don’t love attention
and watching her love the attention
and her probably giving me attention too
but there’s always that weird aftertaste
like not enough water too many beers
there’s that weird aftertaste

you both know you’ll never make love
or maybe just i know that
or maybe i really don’t know that
but my point is
that’s the kind of ideal candidate
for some men
the woman who just wants to be loved
in that moment
not for a lifetime
the woman who just wants to pour alcohol
into a black hole with you
the woman who just wants to hit the lights
and be anonymous monsters
there’s a time and a place for everything
but i get stuck in the story
i get lost in those eyes i mentioned
that i’m not afraid to stare down
and it scares me not knowing
the next time i’m gonna
run into a woman
who stares back harder
and sees past the conversation
and into the awkward physicality
the words not spoken
the odd pacing of a romantic poet
in a world that says
we need to listen more to women
because the conversation is the foreplay
and i hear that sex
isn’t as good without foreplay
but i wouldn’t know
i’ve never tried it that way

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

READ “CHOCOLATE”

CHOCOLATE

they are fighting in the front seat
about nothing
absolutely nothing
arguing about where to eat
or how to drive
or what weather patterns are predictable
in the jungles of tanzania
and which ones are less than determinable
you missed the turn back there
stop smacking your gum so loud
can we not listen to this song again

and i am tucked in the backseat
hard hard candy in my mouth
and all i can think
is why the fuck
isn’t there chocolate?!

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

READ “(FAST POST)”

THE MAN FROM THE FUTURE

i was on the light rail one day
didn’t know where i was headed
just one of those days where the sun
wasn’t gonna come into the house
so rather than waiting for the
floodwaters of introversion to rise
i rode my bike over to the train
and hopped on towards denver
away from the television and the bed
and there across from me on the train
was a young boy, maybe 9 years old
in a business suit, reading the paper
he read from it with the focus of a monk
turning the pages in established ritual

excuse me i said to him
he looked at his watch then up at me
“it’s 9:47″
no no no i said
i was just going to ask
aren’t you a little too young to be
on the light rail alone
“too young?” he inquired
with a stern gaze
yes, i said
you must be no older than 10
you’re just a boy
“i am not a boy,” he said,
“i am a man from the future,”

he’d stolen my tongue
i wanted to say
and i’d wanted to say
but i ended up not saying
because he was telling the truth
and in that moment
the glare of the sun
piercing the train windows
i felt as if
i was just a boy from the past

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014


READ “WELCOME BACK, ASSCLOWN”

WELCOME BACK, ASSCLOWN

welcome back,
assclown
thanks for remembering
that doing this
is an inseparable part
of your character

you just needed a break

no, i get that

except that you’re a liar

you’re being lazy

and you need
to get
your shit together

this

this is an endless war
there is no armistice
there is no eye of the storm
there is maybe
a time to prepare
and a time to rest
but time is a shitty date
and he will abandoned you
through the bathroom window
at a fancy restaurant
leaving you with the check
and no ride home

but seriously
welcome back
it’s nice to have you here

it was a very long summer
but the winter is starting
to look pretty badass

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2014

READ “THRILLER”

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Thanks a lot.

Love,
Brice