CHESS

it’s denver in january cold

at the bus stop
there’s a man
in work boots
with a lunch pail
and he looks cold too
his lips pursed
hands in pockets

and there’s a woman
with her two daughters
sitting on the
cold metal
bench
reading them a
story

and there’s a kid
with a baltimore ravens
hat
on backwards
who is pacing
like he’s waiting
for the super bowl
next sunday

there is gum
all over the ground
gum and cigarette
butts

now here comes the blind man
cane in hand
he can’t see me
as i sit here
still
and frozen
does he know
i’m here?

i am some weird caricature
to all of them
lost in my headphones
and underneath my hood
and thom yorke
is going crazy
in my ears
singing my iron lung
they have no idea
he’s whispering
and screaming at me
in the corner
of an asylum
on the other side
of the headphones
he’s desperately singing
with desperation
about desperation
he’s moving me
but he’s not here

there are five other hearts
at this bus stop
waiting to share
the same submarine vessel
to take us to
somewhere else

and it’s cold but not too cold to talk

and i’m off in the asylum
with thom yorke
and i’m twentysomething
in a hoodie
lost in headphones
and as soon as we violently
tug the pull cord
on the bus
and exit
professionally
we will be off to live
our seperate lives together

thom yorke is screaming at me
from some supermarket in england
with his wife
but we are all silent
faceless chess pieces
faced with the same war
but stuck
within our black
and white
spaces

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ “BLOOD ON THE AMERICAN HIGHWAY”

BLOOD ON THE AMERICAN HIGHWAY

there is blood on the american highway
red paint splattered on white median lines beneath a blue sky
we run from coast to coast
we take off in the night, trunk left open, and we fly through the eye of the needle
into the rocky mountains in search of the final sun
that sun which burns brightly dying for california
we kiss the hills along the way
we salute the cold night concrete with lit cigarettes left to ash
we don’t know where we go
we just do as the green signs tell us to

the lostest of the lost pioneers
disoriented we are disoriented we follow the smoke signals
we drive right through the indian ghost the song of the past
we just blast the radio as if we could fill the sky with sound
great american rock sound
blaring guitars, raging drums, and the bass that moves
like a convertible through the wind
the sound through your head

this is our american song
rewritten and rewritten again
we search for freedom in its bars
independence in four four time
this is our american song
waking up in motel sixes with no cigarettes
and the t.v. is on for noise
and the sex through the wall
and the jingling of slot machines down the hall
and the hum of the ice machine
check out time is eleven o clock

we wrote our song into our constitution
first we decided we would be free
then we decided we needed guns
and we threw a couple to alabama
and we threw a few more to texas
and we boarded up the borders that we broke down

there are lights in fields in plains of kansas
to light the gymnasium swaying to high school dance
we move our hips like pioneers
we throw our hands up in the air
and when the music dies down
we drive to the tops of hills that look down on the nothing
and we kiss like we have to

then we’re off again
down the bloody american highway
through cities and deserts and fields and mountains
and more cities and we’re going where no one else has gone
at least that’s what we tell ourselves

we throw on our kerouac hats
and put an eighth of ginsberg in our glove compartment
we load up our hemingways into the trunk
and we drive
we drive into the most unnatural horizon
we move down the bloody american highway
tank on e, stuck with the am radio through the worst parts of utah
we move at so many miles per hour
of course
there is blood on the american highway

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ “BEN”

CRICKETS

it looks like it’s just me and the crickets tonight
the crowds poured in like flash floods
they shook, they rampaged, they rumbled the house
they spilt their drinks all over the tables
they danced on the wet tables
they kissed in my closets
they unhinged my doors and they set my clothes on fire
they blew out my speakers with their digital tribal anthems
they cursed the name of daylight
their hands reached out towards the night sky
the room filled with smoke
the intercourse of chattering, the music of heart
they filled the crevices and corners of my life
the kissing gourami wallflower star-crossed lovers
who wake up demons with bad breath and hangovers
they clawed at the walls, they clawed the ceilings
they hung their reservations from the ceiling fan
and watch as it shredded them to dust
like leftover confetti on the mardis gras ground
i slipped into my bed, slipped into my mind
as the world turns turbulent around me
as the clocks lost track of time
and the freezer began to fill with pairs of keys
the morning came like snow on january first
and the floor was littered with bodies in coma
slowly they dwindled, they faded, they disappeared
out into the long line of cars
out into the systematic revolution of deadlines
and bus schedules and inevitable responsibility
now you listen to me and what i have to say
until you too wander off out into delusional reality
and then, as it always end up,
it’s just me and the crickets tonight

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ “WINDSTORM (A DREAM)”

Interesting in submitting to Flashlight City Blues?

WENDOVER, UTAH

i was behind the wheel of a car
in the warm fall of utah
and the hood was down
and the wind was blowing through my hair
and all around me were these great wind turbines
like monsters in the middle of nothing
and the radio was the perfect volume
and on the side of the road
was a sinister looking cop
in red aviator sunglasses
and as soon as i passed by
he flipped on his lights, his siren
but then he just drove right on by me
the highway was endless
the constant birds on the telephone wires
turned their heads as i drove by
and i just keep going
it didn’t stop
i knew that this road never ended
there was no great city that it lead to
there was no lover on the far end waiting for me
this was the everything i had
and i could grab it in my fist
but some of the petals slipped by
and they just became fragments of me
lost and lost and lost and lost

i closed my eyes
and fell asleep on a hotel bed in wendover
i turned the television on
and the room sounded quieter
the sheets were stale
and i’m pretty sure it was just me,
the hotel manager and a few scattered souls
floating around the casinos

there was a mark in the road where the state line was
and when i passed it the next morning
i don’t know that i felt anything

i don’t know what i’m getting at
and to be completely honest
this is just flotsam and jetsam
of the american highway
and i’m tired and i’m bored
there’s no land left to discover
and there’s empty houses
that no one can afford

i’m sorry
i keep trying to describe this
the problem is there’s nothing to describe
but i’m smiling

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “DEAREST HIPSTERS”

SEVIER COUNTY

i followed endless yellow lines endlessly
through a ghost’s shadow in utah and
there were no crickets and there was no god
pushing endlessly through the endless stomach of
the pupil of eternity; i was alone the way you think of
a lighthouse as being alone
and in the onyx smoke of sevier county the headlights
of my vehicle only reminded me that this place
this gun buried in a bible
was never to be found
i was a bullet in a dusty barrel
and the moon was swallowed by the sky
one hundred some odd miles
no services
the analog clock on my dashboard
was irrelevant numbers
and the oldies radio station was the muffled voices
of dead people
drowsy drivers cause crashes
warned that sign that grew out of the earth
and my eyes acknowledged
two voids staring hollow into the void staring back
i was draining like a dirty bathtub
and from the desert night road to ghost rocks
a pair of headlights blinked at me from the margins of existence
i won’t stop i said out loud to my self
and in my rear-view mirror i saw those phantom eyes
fade into non-existence
in dark roads and dark rooms alike they will always haunt me
blinking forever, lost in never.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “ROGAINE”