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AND I START TO WONDER IF MY NICE LITTLE PILLS IN THEIR RED DESIGNER CONTAINER ARE CUTTING OFF MY ABILITY TO RAMBLE

and the monk is far far gone in some universe i can’t join him in
and there’s five white guys on television arguing for the elephant throne and i don’t know their names and i should know their names
and the fridge and i haven’t moved all day and i called in sick for my psychology test today but i couldn’t even get to the core of my own apple at the moment
and this moment is dedicating itself to slackjaws who are happy spending their lives playing backyard horseshoes and the other guy online who agrees with me that newt gingrich looks like the keebler elf
and i haven’t spoken to jack daniels since school started – he texts me from time to time to see what i’m up to but i tell him i’m busy but really he just always overstays his welcome and gives me a headache with all his macho bullshit
and anne coulter is somewhere bitching and moaning about things she didn’t take the time to understand and in heaven, socrates is throwing darts at her face
and in heaven michael jackson is happy that no one is bothering him and in heaven everyone is shaking their angel heads at us
and sometimes i wish i was in heaven too but first there’s too much good poetry to write about this place
and my chores are just gonna have to wait because today is dedicated to freedom
and somedays i wish i could just walk around with a sleep mask on
or even better, i could do a sensory deprivation mask like politicians and tobacco lobbyists and the official american television fan club
and before these pills and my first major revelation of driving my life towards my own happiness i used to never finish what i started and now i always do
it’s my day off and i’ve become a turtle writing about the inside of his shell
so for once, for the first time in a long time i’m gonna stop writing and find myself again in the honesty of incompleti-

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “ANDY WARHOL”

SOMETIMES I FEEL LIKE THERE’S A COWBOY ARGUING WITH A BUDDHIST MONK IN MY HEAD

and the cowboy always draws his pistol but the buddhist monk just walks through the walls of the saloon
and the buddhist monk tells the cowboy to relax try meditating and the cowboy says meditation is just an excuse to be lazy
and the cowboy swigs jack from the bottle and the monk sips tea from a cup
and the monk says inner peace and the cowboy says western expansion
and the cowboy says i’ve got a lady back home do you got a lady back home and the monk says that’s the only kind of love i’ve never known
and the monk sets his house on fire and the cowboy builds a shed
and the cowboy sings old diddies about america by the campfire while the monk hums to the sound of everywhere
the cowboy eats pork and beans, the monk eats nothing at all
and at high noon it’s midnight
and the cowboy spits his tobacco and the monk focuses on the truth
and sometimes they talk about their dreams and realize they both have brown eyes
but sometimes i just wish they would shut the hell up

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “SUBTERRANEA”

WHEN I WAS MAYBE TWELVE YEARS OLD

i jammed a piece of pencil lead into the skin over my heart

this is a true story
it never came out
the skin grew over it
and i am convinced that little freakin piece of lead is shuffling around inside of me still
it mostly squats in my skull
listening to bad 90′s music at three in the morning
reminding me how much life is a drag off a bummed cigarette
a piece of lead with a penchant for marcy playground and nada surf
when it’s not doing that it lodges itself into the joint of my knees
reminding me of my father
who sacrificed his knees to the insatiable gods of retail in return for warm meals

i like when the lead makes my knees sting a bit
sometimes the piece of lead goes to my liver
usually the weekends
it duct tapes my liver hostage and demands i waterboard him with whiskey unil he spills all his secrets
this piece of lead wreaks havoc in this vessel
little red cartoon demon with a pitchfork
sometimes he stands in front of my retinas
playing home movies of ex-girlfriends
stupid fights
sober drunken moments of pure cherished regret

in my nose he burns the incense of their perfumes
he meditates
and when he lodges himself in my heart i hate him most

he tugs at my heart strings like the ghost in the bell tower and i ring out everything everywhere all at once

i ring my mother’s chicken noodle soup
i ring my sister’s diamond soul
i ring my father’s fireplace hugs
i ring death waltzing with life
and the karma of martyred hearts

the cosmic kaleidoscope of america
i ring bad knees and good fridays and pilot episodes of life stories that rest in jars in doctor’s offices
i ring the towers falling down
and people without legs standing up

i ring the man whose job is to talk people out of suicides and i ring the times he fails
i ring for nothing – that lies between second hands stroking but i ring
everything everywhere for everyone ever all at once

sometimes the piece of lead travels to my pencil
but i just set the pencil down
don’t want to write him off just yet
this ghost in my belltower
i won’t let him out.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

READ “REDHEAD (TO DENVER)”

WHISKEY MAN

you’ve got ash on your leather jacket
yellow in your grinded teeth
and a shit stain on your soul
you’re drunk again
and while you’re out parting knees
she stays in saying prayers
for you and your quickly fading cigarettes
you’ve never been the type
to step in line
even at easter service
you stay lazy-seated
while the body and blood get old
your dinner’s getting cold
and you are what you eat
but you
are not innocent, young, naive or sweet
you’re burning up, whiskey man
and no one will cry at your funeral
not even the miscarried children
you could have carried if you wanted to
but you’re too busy kicking rocks
too busy stealing complacency from plants
you drink in your water
while the desert streams run dry
the tumbleweeds are off to work with ties and briefcases
while you stumble in the wind
the sun warms your bride’s face
while you set happy homes on fire
you take what you desire
you are a whiskey man
the world will never forget you
disaster fables scars wrapped up in the butt of your
coffin nail
the world will never forget you

AS SOON AS I LEARNED THE WORD “NIRVANA”, I VIOLENTLY SHOOK ANY CHANCE OF IT OUT OF ME

i noticed all of a sudden that my speedometer went up to 160 mph
i realized i was twenty-three years old and god what a disappointment it would be to wake enlightenment prematurely
i stopped setting alarm clocks
i tore calendars down from off my walls
the sugar tooth i had pulled from my mouth grew back
i was a haphazard caution sign child playing in the garden
i ran stoplights and came back to steal them when no one else was around
i shook hands with night exchanging with him business cards for a bottle of moonshine
i crammed stolen stereos into the trunk of my hot car heart
i hit baby seals with plastic bats and shaved off one of my eyebrows
i took power tools and removed the hinges on my bedroom door
i removed the glass between the people-animals and the zoo-animals
i shattered fragile dreams letting in the monsters of nightmares
i have something else to say
there are mirrors everywhere
and i have kickstarted my disappearing act with a fundraiser for demons when i should have been more useful in a coma
the edge is sharp
and it is not always in vanity that mothers teach us not to run with scissors
there are mirrors everywhere
books fold symmetrical over themselves
(closed casket funerals for pens that bleed to death)
there are mirrors everywhere
framing reflections on scars of stupidity that run from our eyes to our mouth
there are mirrors everywhere
in fun houses we smile open wallet smiles at a maze, a labyrinth, a fleeting moment of no identity but we leave our poetic fingerprints at every crime scene
and in every bathroom
on foggy whiskey glasses
and speeding tickets
the handles of weapons
the rope of guillotines
(we piss our names in the snow)
there are mirrors everywhere
we hate seeing ourselves on camera
vampires, lost boys
and i have kickstarted my disappearing act
can’t see my bloody reflection
i toast bad habits to breaking bad habits
wait. wait.
i regret
nothing.
do i?
i’m paving the path to enlightenment with hot coals.
but i want to die with blistered feet.
i meditate on rock and roll
god
i am so god damn american
i am starbucks hot tea
i am approaching nirvana in the disoriented footsteps of kurt cobain
the planned suicide of hunter s. thompson and i’m asking these mirrors
what is the opposite of nirvana?

what is the opposite of nirvana?

there are mirrors everywhere.

what is the opposite of nirvana?
what is the opposite of nirvana?
what is the opposite of nirvana?

(reckless poem implodes on its own structure)

 

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

THE PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE OF VARINIA RODRIGUEZ

her words are semi-automatic rounds fired from her metal gut
do not fuck with her
this girl knows how to say “cunt”
emphasizing each consonant like a brooklynite biting his tongue
she stands like a soldier
on stage she sets herself on fire and its the audience who are left with third degree burns
leather jacket and heels
a camel hanging off her red lipstick
her red lipstick a soapbox
for the symphonic neurotic urgent purging of the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez

she is a punk rock train plummeting down the ugly slopes of the rocky mountains into sure oblivion
she screeches, sparks fly from the silver tongue permanently embedded in her cheek
but then she pulls the emergency brake and from the chainsaw sound of chaos
the train stops
in the silence she makes firm eye contact
points a forty-four magnum at your chest
you can almost hear the heartbeats in her bullets

chaos and well-thought out speeches
order and sober drunk shit storms from heaven
none of us are safe from the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez

(i challenged her to whiskey
and as i dropped an ice cube in my glass
i’m fine
she says
this girl
the ice
just waters it down
i’ll drink you under the table she said
and we toasted
to new regrets
and at the very least
bad poetry)

the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez
is not easily saturated to the regimens of pen and paper
it is violence with feathers
it is peace with bombs
it is words like unfiltered cigarettes
mental pictures like sepia snapshots
it’s a short girl standing on 4 am tables crying honest
a decibel in her voice for every woman, man and child who cannot vocalize
varinia’s poetry is getting kicked out of bullshit stores for breaking in the sales windows
i bet some nights she sits at the window like a cat, anxious of everything
i bet some nights she sits at the window like a sniper, anxious of everything

the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez
you have two options
hear what she has to say or hear what she has to say
and stubbornness is irrelevant
when honesty is pertinent
and varinia rodriguez is a loud speaker
and varinia rodriguez is a warm hug from an old friend in the cold breath of denver
and varinia rodriguez is a song that you have to hear now not later
and the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez is the heart under the floorboards breaking though with a crowbar while you’re trying to sleep in ignorance
but it is inevitable

 

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2012

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

 

I selected this post to be featured on my blog’s page at Poetry Blogs.