DARWIN AND SHIT

i want to be the jim morrison of american poetry but that’s taken.

plus i’m not skinny or super interested in that degree of excess.

maybe i’m more like the kurt vonnegut of american poetry?

god dammit i can’t compare myself to other authors.

i shouldn’t say “of american poetry” either. it’s almost outdated in a way. when the trafalmadorians arrive they will not have time for this concept of “america” so i might as well start referring to myself as an earthling poet.

i want to be the madonna of earthling poetry, except even more insecure than madonna.

i want to find what the poetry equivalent of smashing a guitar on stage is and do that.

don’t say ripping a poem up on stage. not comparable.

maybe i should just be the brice maiurro of earthling poetry.

profound brice. someone give this man a cookie.

maybe i should be the chocolate chip cookie of earthling poetry.

ok. earthling poetry is starting to bug me.

human poetry.

uhhhhh,

maybe i uh yeah maybe i should do something else.

the trafalmadorians are not going to be fans of human poetry.

i should be sipping the water on mars.

wouldn’t that be great? if i just used it to boil some ramen noodles?

not a big fan of ramen. maybe cup of noodles.

i am the cup of noodles of american poetry.
cheap and full of MSGs.

do people try to make their poetry rock and roll or is just part of their nature?

how do i make rock and roll part of my nature? would i have to give up my affinity for watching documentaries because i will not give up the documentaries.

you can’t make me.

quit trying to make me into something else.

nobody makes me into something else except me.

that’s right.

i’m the charles darwin of human poetry.

survival of the fittest and shit.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

THE PAGE I RIPPED FROM THE SCRIPT

when the war is
over

i return to my
home

the clocks run down

forever stuck documenting
the very second of their last
breath

and i the same

washed up on shore like a dead
bird stuck in plastic trash
welcome home

all the unread books
on my bookshelf
collecting dust
i open one
but my head burns
like a dry whiskey hangover
and my eyes shake
like a paint shaker

i clear the black stain
from the mirror
i wipe down the floors
i put on an old record
and i dance with the ghost
of christmas past

when my blood was thick
my lungs huge and booming like an atom bomb
there was something to celebrate

the war is over now
i return a failure
walking in circles with two left feet
typing these poems with my ten thumbs
eyes glazed lost in the looking glass

i just wish it would take me again
i’d rather be out dying in a war of passion
than pace the halls of my house
in the afterbirth
of what could have been

had i been more willing to stay in the shock

more willing to stay
in the madness
in the quiet
in the rich thick of uncertainty
in the flame of a star
a million degrees burning
but far enough away
just a bright god to wish upon
but now i lay coffee idled and dosed
counting the white spiders
by the sounds of their legs in the wall
marinating in the afterbirth
of potentially something
possibly nothing

who knows
who knows
who knows

the page
i ripped
from the script

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

NEVER HAPPENED

and then at breakfast
at the hangover to the party
the dregs sat at the kitchen table together
eating pancakes
drinking coffee

“do you even remember
what you two
were doing
last night?!”

and i thought to myself,

yes
we got drunk
and we messed around
you’d sit up
across the living room
on the floor
and we’d pretend to be asleep
we’d stand stiller
than freeze tag
you’d lay back down
rinse and repeat

but i didn’t say that
and neither did she
no one said anything

we just went on
eating pancakes
drinking coffee

if no one wants to admit it
happened
it’s pretty easy for it to never have
happened

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

ELEGY

and i walk through the graveyard with flowers in my hand
beneath a stormy sky grey with indifference
until i get to the grave where i buried our love
and i bow down at the tombstone and i lay down the flowers
and i look up to the sky uncracked even by the dead trees

there is a great silence to letting go of something that wasn’t terrible
there is a still lake hidden through the brush of the forest
and beneath that lake there is an entire climate breeding below
fishes swimming aimlessly and dead bodies turning into water
but still the lake is still

i can still see your face light up as i pushed through the crowd to you
i can still feel your warmth sleeping beside me
i can remember us mad and laughing beneath the buildings in Denver
and the songs

i will never forget the songs
they run through my head like wild horses on a carousel
each word relevant to the way that we were
each musical note a leaf stripped away from its embrace of its tree
swaying back and forth like dance steps as it falls to the ground
we swayed back and forth like dance steps as we fell to the ground
the eyes on eyes, the nails on skin, the fingers ran through hair
the moments of ecstasy hidden away from any kind of audience
away from cameras, never spoken from mouths, away from even poems
stuck now like record skips in the phonograph of my mind

we were constellations colliding in a meteor shower
and the blow from our crash was enough to light the cosmos
life born, children running rampant around the universe, and then
fading out like the end of a requiem

and you are not gone, not to me, tall heart
your electricity still runs up and down my spine
your blood still takes hostage my body
but i dug a hole in the ground
and i suppose i must lay in it

six feet of dirt above my head
i laid long nights beside you for an eternal minute
now i must lie without you through a frigid winter
my hands my own shovels
i bury myself with the same tools i used
to bury our love

i will miss you as much as i wanted you
i wish you to find the happy your heart hunts
i wander through the halls of my own heart now

but you and i
we will grow from separate graves like flowers
to bloom, you, red and radiating
me, blue and slithering like vines
and the world will cut us up from our roots
tie us up in string and call us a gift

someone will hold you in their arms
and walk you down an alley beneath stained glass windows
or maybe through a graveyard to place you on someone else’s grave
beneath a clear sky white with pure honesty
to sleep with them forever

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

SAINT PARADOX

he is trapped in open boxes
drowning in bonfire
shaking the stirred cage

he rubs his back against bookcases
and paces mad man madman through
the halls of twilight

fingers lost in manic hair
mustache twirled
like a primitive torture device

he bathes
in the blood
of philosophers

he is
queen size mattress
on the ceiling
punchbag basement
textbook torn asunder

he is lost in the arrow of his compass
he dives off like a diver
into blue mystery hazy cold rivers
reflections of bridges
in his deep puddle heart

he looks you in the eye
he grabs your heart by the collar
he punch you in the
critical thinking

he turn hungry monster at midnight
dance like electric jello puppet

he kiss you with words

he stab you in the ignorance

he is peanut butter
peter parker
cartoon character

he is love
strewn out like intestines
across your thin
glass
earth.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

the difference, Bukowski

yes, Bukowski
i too have wallowed
in a bottle of
Arcadia

and died
with the hot barrel
of some pistol
pressed against my unholy
temple

i too, Bukowski
have loved a woman
and watched her scurry away
a pair of legs
running rampantly for the
horizon

yes, Bukowski
i’ve driven the road
to some shithole destination
where i threw my lifeblood
into a dealer’s hands
and watched like magic
as he made it all go
away

i too, Bukowski
i too

for we both
have wandered by streetlight
to empty roominghouses

we both have fallen asleep
to alcohol

and the static of the television set

like a glorious reminder
of what could be

but i don’t stay there
one morning i wake up
i shit shower shave
and i take that
empty glass bottle
and i smash it into a shiv
and i stab the world
i give the whore her money
and i move on
i make my bed
and i move
on

you see
Bukowski, that’s
the difference, Bukowksi

we’re both coiled snakes
feeding off our own
poison

both bit by the same mongoose
but the difference, Bukowski
is i strike back

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

DATE WITH A BEAUTIFUL WOMAN (WHERE I TURN INTO A WEREWOLF)

when i stare across the table and i realize i am in love
and she looks at me as if she is in love with me as well
but that must be some sort of mistake there’s no way
maybe it’s the sushi it’s gotta be the sushi
i assume everyone looks like they’re in love when
they are eating sushi

i sneeze, but it sounds more like a monstrous growl
one of those sneezes that you hear someone do
and you just want to walk across, say, the sushi bar
and slap them across their face for being obnoxious
i sneeze one of those sneezes seizing into my arm
and i look back at her, sugar-eyed she says “bless you.”
and i think to myself that i must be blessed
but my arm so close now i see what is beginning to happen

great thick hairs begin to crawl through my skin like spiders
as my nails lengthen sharpen and blacken on my left arm
i turn my wrist, below the table, upright and black veins bulge
pulsating, i glance up in fear and she is still oblivious to me
she picks at the sushi with her chopsticks and has no clue
that i am beginning to transform

i reach for the sushi with my right arm, still normal
and say something like “this is some damn good sushi.”
my hand shaking as i bring the raw fish to my salty mouth
i chew the sushi like it’s the first thing i’ve eaten in weeks
with the desperation of a wild wolf my teeth at war with each other
my vision begins to blur and i see her just stare onward at me
her cheeks rosy and red her hand reached out for my hand
the lights become harsh and great fangs begin to grown in my mouth
the taste of blood rises from the pit of my stomach like a monsoon
i reach my contorted hand for hers and i hold it like a support system
my fingers tracing her wrist i start to think about her blood
i start to think about my wolf fangs diving deep into her neck
i think about the moan it would release from her soul
like a ghost set loose out into the world, like smoke rising
like some shadow of a red balloon rising into the atmosphere

still she looks at me like i’m the doctor who cured her cancer
she looks at me like i’m the mailman and it’s her sixteenth birthday
my vision black and green the world is some strange jungle
and the kettle drum inside me continues to gain and gain more
my breaths grow faint and i am still turning, now my right arm
grown reckless and hairy there’s no room in my animal skull any longer
for thoughts of philosophy or poetry or sweet women at dinner tables

and still she looks at me like i am the man she wants to marry
and still she looks at me like i am some realization of a dream
while inside of me demons dance around huge bonfires
while inside of me mountains burn and great cities are evacuated
she still looks at me, and interlacing her soft fingers between
the dangerous clutch of my morbid claws she speaks with pink lips
i love you
and i howl a resonating bloodlust howl for the death inside my soul
for the eternal chase of the scattered prey, dark praise to the moon
but all she hears is
i love you too, and
this is some damn good sushi

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

THE WORST SHIT OF MY LIFE

i was wastey-faced
and walking to a bus
from the light rail
the bus was pulling up
right when i got there
but i knew i couldn’t get on
because out of nowhere
i urgently needed to take a shit

i knew it wasn’t going to be
one of those formal shits
where everything goes smoothly
you flush
you wash your hands
and you move on with your life

i had the civil war
muskets and torches
in the swamps of alabama
raging inside of me

this was urgent
all of a sudden
nothing else mattered

i swear to god
if anyone came between me
and the nearest toilet
i would have snapped their neck
like it was nothing

luckily
across the parking lot
there was a coffee shop
i b-lined through the cars
and rampaged to the door
closed.

it was cold outside
i wasn’t dressed warm enough
and a demon child
was clawing around my bowels

i found a hair salon
that was still open
but it was empty
and all i could imagine
was my garbage disposal magnum opus
echoing through the clinical corridors
of the empty building

across the way
like a shining beacon of hope
ned kelly’s
a hole-in-the-wall irish pub
i ran over

(and by “ran”
i mean that awkward
clenched-ass
power walk nonsense
beads of sweat
freezing to my face.)
i scurried in.

i was met by a bartender
and a bar full of people
every stool filled
as i ran by
my eyes averted
the bartender said to me
“hey—
the bathroom is for
customers only!”

i paid him no regard
i had no regard to give him
i bolted into the stall
oblivious to everything around me

the stall was 110 degrees hot
it was just a toilet and walls
there wasn’t even a sink
just a soap dispenser on the wall
outside of the bathroom stall
i heard someone performing
nickelback karaoke
in the key of gutteral noises

as soon as i sat down
my pants were around my ankles
and hallelujah holy hell
that was a good moment
and as my life flashed
before my bloodshot tired eyes
there was the sound of footsteps
outside of the bathroom stall
heavy, like a bear’s drunken groans
being muttered on the other side
of the stall
as nickelback played on

there was a hole in the door
and the ogre on the other side
peaked his devil’s eye through it
and began shaking at the door
i swear the whole stall shook with it
the moans and the groans continues
as i was reborn of the toilet

when i’d finished my business
i utilized a metric ton
of toilet paper
to try and clean up
the murder scene
i lifted my pants
and promptly exited
the bar.

the end.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

AMERICAN REBIRTH

i pack up onto the highway
with twelve twelve-packs of red bull,
ten thousand cases of beer,
and a carton of sweet menthol cigarettes
with the windows down when it’s too cold for that
and i’ve got velvet underground on the manic stereo
i’ve got animal blood in the pit of my stomach
as i am a pair of headlights lost into the moonlight sonata

i have returned to the soul of the american night
to the reckless music of momentary satisfaction
this hedonistic nihilist nightmare where i binge
mooneyed and dizzy and dancing on couches
until i die too early and then i starve

and i starve until i create something of substance from the hunger
some gift shop souvenir for you to hang from your rear-view mirror
just a little something for you to always remember me by

and i foreplay the curves of the hills before i enter the mouth of the mountains
i press through time a desert at night where fear is red and blue headlights
on the side of the highway, the corneal white light reflex of a gazelle
captured by a ravenous gunned hunter, i hunter s. through the thompson
i subsonic hollow point through the chamber of the long rifle highway
the distant gleam of casinos west and the soul of the ghost of jim morrison,
dead indians and bad deals, God buried hell in the chest of the western night
and left us above the surface to chase fever dreams like white rabbits

and this is the way that i choose to die
rocked to eternal sleep in the arthritic hands of lady liberty
laid to rest in the pages of her bible

past the ambien fog of the xanax mother mountains
my foot sinks into the pedal, the pedal sinks into the car sinks in
sinks into the pacific coast highway sinking into the pacific ocean
and i am so very california pulsing like waves crashing like tide
dying at the wall at the end of the world

and east
so far east is your love
in a king-sized bed where we fall asleep to the american news
where we fall asleep beneath the stars of aurora
beneath asphalt shingles and a promise to repeat history

but i am caught
drawn out to blue pasture by this cowboy heart
away from you
but reborn to this siege of an idea that does not exist

only to be born and die over and again
in the red railways that run through western men
begging through trainsmoke strewn from their cancerous mouths
begging always for derailment

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015

NIGHT TERROR POEM

when there is no world
no footsteps in the ceiling
no static from the television through the wall
i open my eyes from dreams in twilight
to find my mind racing through bad calculus
through morphine confusion paranoia
ten thousand cameras and i naked tied to the wall
unable to see my hands numb fingered and dizzy
unable to taste the appropriate dosage of nyquil
pouring down my throat i myself the monster above my bed
twenty-seven years of carving at my bones
trying to whittle myself a story
and it’s all gone at the first drop of the witching hour
where caffeine nightmares blend with apocalypse
not beautiful no
not a sunsetting into the mountains
but ten thousand soldiers gasmasked and artilleried
black shadows at the windows at all the doors
looming overcast of eternal separation from family
from friends from love from a sense that what i do in this reality
will carry through time like a robot sent to mars
someday to return to nasa
with binary data with information of what we did not know
and once the ugly thunder is dissipated
i never rest i just comatose back to blankness

in the morning
it’s like a war flashback from another life
hollow boned i make my coffee
buckle my belt and head out the door
a robot sent to mars
memory of sweat still gleaming on my shaken soul

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2015