SINATRA ON THE MOON

sinatra on the moon

i’m trapped on the moon with a bottle of whiskey
i’m sitting in a lawn chair watching the earth
rotate around the sun and it reminds me of the way
we used to dance together, in strange jazz clubs
whose names i don’t remember, i could never remember
i remember the way we reclined our car seats back
and pretended to stare at the stars, when in truth
we were just staring at the ceiling of the car
where the cigarette smoke had eaten away at the fabric

how things have changed
your spaceship left long ago, at my request
and i awoke from dreams that i had sent you away
from earth, only to learn you had left me on the moon
trapped on the moon with a bottle of whiskey
i’m sitting in a lawn chair watching the cell phone satellites
hover around the twittersphere, swing around the blogosphere
the big blue ocean and the waves that crash that mean nothing
to me but form the sand that forms the glass window
you maybe stare out like some cheesy fifties movie or something
at the moon, the full moon or maybe the absent moon
i don’t know, but we could be staring at one another
but maybe that’s just the whiskey talking
and to think i almost didn’t bring the whiskey with me
the only thing that could have made the moon more lonely
debateably

i feel like frank sinatra up here in the stratosphere
not charming, young sinatra
washed up smoked stained suit sinatra
sinatra knowing he will never sleep with a woman again
as beautiful as you were in that red dress at that ball
in new york city on new year’s eve in america on earth
the sinatra who proudly proclaims the glass of whiskey
in his hand and shares with the audience that he is
in fact, quite belligerent, and when life gives you lemons
you take the first spaceship up to the moon
so you can sit forever and collect your thoughts over whiskey
which, of course, are muddled like a weird trumpet solo
like when the band drops off and there’s no drums and no nothing
just miles davis solo romantic silent – listen, just shut up and listen

i’m trapped on the moon with a bottle of whiskey
and earth is this gem that i used to own
that i auctioned off in exchange for an eternity of quiet
endless space, endless silence, peace and god damn quiet

peace and god damn quiet.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ “BIRD #2”

BIRD #2

you pulled over
on the side of road
and you played a song
for a cow
in the middle of nowhere
i don’t remember where
because it’s not important
but you played that song
to that cow
in that field
in the middle of nowhere
and some may say
why the hell
would you play a jazz song
for a cow
in a field
in the middle of nowhere
but i guarantee you
that cow went back
and he or she
bragged to all the other cows
forever more
that bird pulled over
in a field
in the middle of nowhere
just to play a song
for him
or her.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ “BIRD #1”

BIRD #1

i can just see you,
charlie parker
watching television
at the stanhope hotel
hard of breath
hard of head and heart
i can see your glazed eyes
as you watched the juggler juggle
on the dorsey brothers stage show
and you juggled the drugs
with the loss of your daughter
you juggled your bebop revolution
with the aftermath
plane rides to los angeles
red eyes back to new york
days on end in a garage
you jazz players
love to lock yourself away
with the discipline
of a madman

thirty-four years old
but you must have looked
twenty years older
watching the juggler juggle
on that black and white television
and you laughed
you laughed and you laughed
and you laughed until you were choking
and the baroness asked
if you needed to go to the hospital
earlier that evening
and you refused
you couldn’t juggle any longer
but you knew
if you stayed where you were
you could die laughing.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ “POEM”

THAT GOOD OLD-FASHIONED DUBSTEP

you can have your post-grunge grindcore
you can dance the night away to your anti-trip hop
let the acid jazz wash over your bluetooth system
it’s always been that good old-fashioned dubstep for me

you can sway and swing to your nerdcore all night
you can sing aloud those industrial gospel blues
and ride down the freeway
with your tapedeck playing your neofolk gypsy punk
it’s always been that good old-fashioned dubstep for me

i’ll take my iPhone five off the shelf and dust it off
and press play on my spotify
because it’s that dubstep fade-in
and that dubstep drop
that really soothes my weary soul

you can have your bikutsi lo-fi
and your bossanova reggaetone
you can keep your experimental k-pop
and your happy hardcore freak folk
it’s always been
that good old-fashioned dubstep for me

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ “SPIES”

A BREAK-UP LETTER TO AMERICA

dear America,

you are everything I’ve ever known
and that’s the problem.

i feel
saturated by you
consumed by you
i feel as though
you’ve branded your name
on my ass.

you’re blurring
my vision.

you
are gorgeous.
really you are.
your desert dry skin.
your baltimore scars.
the way you refuse
to let me be on top
but you are the crazy girl
you don’t know how to say no
to anything
especially yourself
and especially me.

it’s weird
the way you tell me
about your unhealthy lifestyle
and that you don’t care
that you’re happy this way
that life is all about
doing what you want to do.

America
it scares me how good you are
at firing a gun.

America
it’s funny the way you pretend
to dig through your purse
for your money
when the check comes at dinner.

i don’t think you realize
i am enamoured by you
really i am
it’s been years and years
and i am still in lust with you
thick lust
deep lust
the kind of lust
that i don’t even know
if love is buried beneath it.

i’ll never forget
that little box in your room
where you keep those vintage photographs
of native Americans
and old money
and your rosary.

it seemed to me
that every night before you went to bed
you’d apologize endlessly
for your sins that you still
just keep on committing.
am i in love with you
because you make me feel
like a better person by comparison?

i don’t know
if i can continue to be with you.

remember the ferris wheel
at coney island?
we passed cotton candy
between each other’s mouths
like we were forcing our opinions
down each other’s throats.
remember the way we felt
when we walked through ellis island?
we were so small all of a sudden.
we were so lost in the same dream
together.

do you remember
watching the fireworks
because we were too impatient
to wait for the bombs?
do you remember the time
we got drunk in Vietnam
and Afghanistan and Iraq?

is that all we do together?
get drunk
get into fights
and get kicked out of bars?
you never pay your tab
you just leave your card
and cancel it the next day.

do you realize, America,
that i have a box of i.o.u.’s
from you?

do you realize, America,
that you called Joe Frazier
the n word when he wasn’t in the ring
and a God
when he had your flag on his shoulders?

do you realize, America,
that i’m only with you
until i find someone new
if there is anyone new?

i can’t do this anymore.
we just sit on your dirty apartment floor
and watch the roaches crawl around
on the television.
we’ve got too many shows recorded
and not enough hours in the day
to watch them all.

you’re exhausting, America.

you’re annoying, America.

you’re sexy as hell, America.

you know how to drive
a corvette through the mountains
at ninety miles per hour
with your red high heel
pressed against the accelerator
and lana del rey
playing from the tip of your cigarette
and into the radio.

you drive a stick shift
like manifest destiny.

your sirens
are red white and blue.
your arenas
are the size of God’s pockets.

your phone
is dead half the time.
i’m writing this letter to you
because i’m afraid
that if i break up with you in person
you’ll threaten
to kill yourself.

your videos
are viral, America.

your impressionable little sister
dresses just like you.
i remembered when i realized
i don’t love you anymore.

we were sitting on a swing
on your front porch
in alabama
and you were singing
but all i could hear
was lies in your words
the gospel was gone
the folk wind had been
knocked out of you.

i need to make something clear.
breaking up with you
might be the hardest thing
i’ve ever have to do.
i love you to death.
i crossed out mom’s name
on the heart tattoo
on my bicep
and put yours in its place.

you kiss me
like we’re on a hill
in the fifties
with the top down
king and queen
of suburbia
teenagers
with chewing gum
and a yawn
that is just an excuse
for me to put my arm
on your shoulder.

you’ve taught me
how to dream,
America
but we always see
the horror movies
in theaters
and they give me
nightmares.

night terrors
of los angeles riots
and sandusky
and columbine
and politicians
snorting coke
laughing
like hyenas
i wake up
in sweats.

and it’s strange
because then you comfort me
you wipe my forehead off
with the bill of rights
and you sing to me
“oh lord
won’t you buy me
a mercedes benz.”
and you’ve got
just the right amount
of makeup on your face
and i can see driving through
nowhere between western cities
in the black of your eyes
i can see me smiling
with a quarter tank of gas
hoping i make it to salida
before i run out of
fuel.

i can see gasoline
in the black of your eyes
spread out
over the ocean
like a blaze of glory
like a belligerent night;
like one of our one thousand
belligerent nights.

you smell like
chanel perfume
you shouldn’t
it’s french
but you just do
whatever you want to
don’t you?

you make me smile
like a god damn
happy meal.

what am i saying?
i’m breaking
up with you.
i’m not in love with you
anymore.

yes i am.

oh god
you must think i’m crazy
go ahead
throw me in your white padded room
tell me
what you want me to be
i’ll be
whatever you want me to be
because you have always been
what i wanted you to be.

we all ran away
from home at some point.
some of us made it
to the bus stop down the street.
the light of the world.
but you ran away
and you never looked back
you rode bareback
to the end of it all
to the last frontier
where we met
in San Francisco
because we couldn’t afford
hawaii
and we kissed
sitting down
at the top of lombard street
and you promised me
that you would never forget me
you promised me
that you would try your best.

this is not an easy breakup.
half of my underwear are at your house.
my c.d. collection is tucked beneath your bed.
my trust is buried
in your backyard.

what are we going to do
with our baby?

you’re not going to
try to collect the money
you offered to spend on me
are you?
are you that person,
America?

okay.

okay,
i’m sorry.

pull the trigger.

i’m leaving you,
America.

i want my favorite
t-shirt back.
the one with
the graphic
of bruce springsteen’s
ass in demin jeans
on it.

the one i wore
when we stayed up all night
laying down on your parent’s roof
watching the fireworks
watching the planes fly by
talking about our dreams
and how we had
to keep each other accountable
for them.

i’m leaving you,
America.

probably for a girl
who looks just like
you.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

READ “THAT GOOD OLD-FASHIONED DUBSTEP”

ELEVATOR MUSIC

there is this elevator that runs up my spine
and play music that is just plain terrible
elevator music. hold music. public television music.
i cannot stand it. and my cat burglar heart
tries like hell to sneak in in the night
and rip out the speakers and reinstall in its place
new sound. vivid sound. the kind of sound
that shakes your neighbor’s walls
the kind of sound that you just lay
eyes up counting the little white flakes
on the ceiling while they are banging on your door
sirens and air horns and bass bass bass
that’s the song i want to play inside my elevator
filled with strangers who don’t talk to each other
but tear them out too.

i want to replace them with a man in a tux
and a woman in a slinky red dress
and when they first get on the elevator
they are as far apart as can be
but the man looks over and the woman looks coy
and as soon as the doors closed
they are throat deep in each other’s mouths
and she asks him if he’s married
and he says yes and she says i don’t care
i don’t care tonight because we were trapped
in this elevator that goes up brice’s spine together
and we are here to beat the doldrums away.
we are just figments of brice’s midnight imagination.

i don’t remember the last time i kissed someone.
i mean sincerely sincerely sincerely kissed someone.
seats leaned back, non-elevator music on the radio
just got lost in the rhythm that they present to me.
tonight, i’m sleep deprived and thinking only of this.
tonight, the elevators were just a segway to what
i really wanted to say to you, dear reader.
but you see, i couldn’t get to it right away
because the delivery man was trapped on floor five
because the infidelitous couple were hijacking the elevator
jammed it stuck at level four, so i had to wait
for their moment of love to end to find exactly
what
i was looking for.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

A WELL-KEPT SECRET

An Ode to Hills Like White Elephants

The streets across Denver were long and white. It was dry and the city was desolate, as it tends to get in winter. There was an hour or two to kill before the train came to Union Station before heading to Chicago. The couple leaned on the counter of Leela’s Cafe and Bar.
“Two PBR’s,” said the woman to the bartender. The bartender returned with them and popped one of the caps off.
“Queen of hearts,” said the woman.
“Lower, same suit,” said the bartender.
“Ten of hearts?”
“Nope, jack of hearts,” the bartender said, popping the other cap off, “and yours?”
“What?” said the young man.
The young woman showed him the top of the cap – J and a heart.
“You try to guess the card on the top of the cap. You guess once, and she’ll tell you higher or lower, and then if you get it right, your next beer is free,”
“9 of diamonds…” the young man said to the bartender.
“Yep,” said the bartender.
“Beginner’s luck,” said the woman, “can we get a couple coffees too?”
“Coffee and beer?” said the young man.
“It’s a Denver thing,” said the woman.
The man and the young woman found a table and they sat down. The man stared out the window at the snow falling and the dead streets of a Queen City.
“It’s beautiful,”
“Yeah,” said the woman, drinking her beer.
“Should you be doing that, Kat?”
“My mom did, and look, I’m just fine,”
“Okay,”
“I’m not planning to get belligerent or anything. Sounds like they gave you a solid dose of scaremongering at NYU,”
“I wasn’t trying to preach,”
“I’m sorry. Yeah, it is pretty outside,” said the woman, downing the rest of her beer.
“It’s just white. It’s all white, but i can’t look away. I feel like i’m trying to search for something through the haze,”
“You do sound like a writer…”
“You’re the writer…”
“Travel writer…” said the woman, “That just means they give me an allowance to go write about the strange troubles i get into in strange cities,”
“And strange affairs with strange men,”
“What does that mean?”
“It was just a joke. That’s all,”
“The way you’re drinking that beer is the joke,” said the woman, “do you want a nipple for that thing?”
“What?”
“You’re nursing it. You’re nursing your beer,”
“Oh,” the young man smiled his head turned downward on the table. The music was some girl with a jazzy voice singing over her acoustic guitar. The woman put her hand over the young man’s.
“I love you,”
“I know,”
“Do you like Denver?”
“I love it. It feels like a well-kept secret. Like New York if no one knew where New York was,”
“Huh…”
“I’m sorry; i don’t mean to compare everything to New York,”
“No, i get it. You’ve been there your whole life. I must admit though, it was funny to see you get so excited about seeing a Home Depot,”
“I’m sorry; I’d never seen one before,”
“No, it was charming…” the woman stood up, leaning against the back of her chair, “should we have another drink?”
“I guess that would be okay…” said the young man.
The cold air rushed in along with a group of street kids. The woman walked to the bar and ordered the drinks.
The young man pulled out his phone and checked how long he had. The woman looked back at the bar and saw him. He just smiled and waved at her, like they were meeting for the first time. CONTINUE READING ON GUERRILLA GRAFFITI MAGAZINE.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2013

MAGAZINE LAUNCHES TODAY!

Start it off like Tarantino

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