Poem for the wedding of two dancers

and in the shaken night
where stars go missing
and there is only the two of you
and the silence
may you dance

in festival
in harmony
in scattered uncaptured moments
may you dance

in the face of a life so big
on the giant face of this island
hustled and bustled over
by one million citizens
all with their citizen songs in their heads
and yours
two different songs
that parallel
that move together
but rarely step over
that turn in time
with the air that moves between you
may you dance

may you dance through new life
and the death of your old selves
and find yourselves awake
and new and young and in love
so many times over
and in the fragile glimmer
fingers loosely interlaced
the music almost forgotten
as you become it
may you dance

may you dance with a feast of friends
with a big band and timeless in motion
like a music box
like you’ve cheated death
like you’ve created love from nothing
and no one will ever know
but the two of you
the things understood unsaid between lovers
as they dance

in time
and out of time
in waltz
in stress
in meter
in four four
in march
in blues
in common time
towards nothing
towards everything
a song
all consuming
then over
then again
may you dance

as we dance with you
in our own rhythm
and see the way
two people
can move through time
separately
but dedicated
hand in hand
to the music

Support me on Patreon.

rent is due on park avenue

rent is due on park avenue
rent is due on park avenue

time to pull it all together
time to kick away the doldrums
and sit down
to shake out a solid plan
for food this week
rent is due on park avenue

time. moving flawlessly onward
two tiny steps at a time
floating off
time floating off into the vast ocean of black space
ten million tiny alarms ringing in your head
rent is due on park avenue

come to think of it
i am not as happy as i could be
i could use so much more happy
where can i find so much more happy?
rent is due on park avenue

ten million wound-up tin soldiers
perfectly aligned
guns at the ready

sprawled out across the warehouse floor
perfectly aligned
perfectly ready
because rent is coming due on park avenue

and i

still vigilantly optimistic still

and i
wound-up tin poet
with a golden key twisted up in my spine
i sit and write poems

i document the continuing story that we wrote a long time ago
in the vast empire buried beneath our birdsong

and i pretend it’ll fit in the words
this empty sort of hollow where roses grow on the perimeter
all over the ribs and they bloom for space in the hollow
and they die for wars that no one knows who won

and i still vigilantly optimistic still

 

and i
still vigilantly optimistic

still.

Punch Drunk Press

Hey guys,

I guess I never really announced that I started a publishing company, Punch Drunk Press. Currently, we are not accepting manuscripts but we are accepting a wide variety of media for the online site. Please submit and take a minute to check it out! There’s a lot of great stuff up on the site already.

PUNCH DRUNK PRESS

SUBMISSIONS PAGE

Looking for reviews

Hey folks,

I’m excited to announce that forthcoming is my first book of poetry. I am currently looking for people who have book and poetry review sites or otherwise who would be willing to read my book and review it. Please feel free to share this info however you deem fitting.

Thank you for your support,
Brice

Analysis of a Wheelchair I Found

my apartment is small and has too much stuff in it. i don’t think i’m a packrat, it’s more that i’m a goldfish whose bowl size has changed a lot. i was living in a townhome, then an apartment, then a small house, then a bigger house, and now a very small apartment. so all this nonsense i’ve accumulated, nonsense i’m attached to, has just piled up in here. and maybe the attachment is the problem.

i’ve got this great piece of furniture that i use as an entertainment center. i found it by the side of the road. i used to use it as a sort of alter. put a bunch of candles and gemstones and my tarot cards on it. that was a different time for me. i’m still spiritual but there’s an activeness to it. i think the spirituality for me is born out of flexing the muscles in my soul. going on road trips. quitting a job i hate. putting myself in uncomfortable situations. forcing myself to reckon with unknown parts of me and how they interact with unknown parts of the world. so now that alter is an entertainment center. maybe that’s symbolic, but i don’t think so. i still read the tarot. i do love that.

i’ve also got this metal frame shelving unit. i found that in an alley near my apartment. it was rusting in the rain, but i love that too. it’s very industrial looking and beat up but when i moved to south broadway, i started to pick up this affinity for the grit of the city. i found this dirty beer sign by the trash and i just grabbed that too. in my bathroom there’s this sign for a concert that i just ripped off a pole in my neighborhood. it’s got packing tape surrounding it and it falls off all the time. you get sick of beauty, i think, or at least the normal idea of beauty. i love the shit out of van gogh but i wouldn’t want his prints on my walls. and it’s not the most innovative thing to find the gritty city stuff beautiful either. i’m familiar with heroin chic. i’m also familiar with the idea that a homeless person’s life shouldn’t be your artistic expression. these items don’t come to me in some sort of interior decorator mentality. they scream at me. take me. it’s rare but when they scream at me to be taken i take them.

most everything i own for furniture i found or was given to me. my bed and bed frame were gifts from my former landlord. he lived upstairs and i think he pitied me for the breakup i was going through when i left so he threw me that bed. and also he’s just a genuinely nice person. i’m glad he came into my life. he’s your traditional red-blooded conservative, but i also was around while he sat at his computer for hours researching the judges up for election. i’ve also seen nothing but kindness from him. i also saw him give up alcohol to get the woman he loves back. i’m pretty proud to be the recipient of a bed from him.

on my wall is some drywall that my friend sarah painted a painting on. one night, in the twilight of this round of our friendship, her and my friend ivan came over and big surprise we just drank a little whiskey, listened to laid back music and painted to our hearts’ desire. sarah and i painted, ivan i think read. ivan is a person of integrity like that. so sarah takes this torn up piece of drywall and paints this magical barren frozen tundra of a landscape on it. with these harsh red streaks that look almost digital. and in the foreground, the focus of the painting is this polar bear, and it’s got red on it too. it’s dripping with blood but i’m not so certain that’s the case. she just did this with a piece of drywall. and now she’s off in vancouver with ivan and she just started her first day at a job that she hates and she’s going to quit on day two. she asked me what she should do.

there’s this weird cycle where i used to give shitty impulsive emotional advice, and then i gave empathetic advice based on what i would do, and then i started asking people questions to help them figure out what they wanna do, and now i just don’t think i know anything at all.

i found a wheelchair the other day. i don’t need a wheelchair, but i couldn’t stand to see a wheelchair, an old school wheelchair covered in sharpie graffiti, by a dumpster. i couldn’t let it go. i don’t need a wheelchair but this thought lingered over my head that if i didn’t take it, it’d be gone. so now it’s in my living room. there’s three chairs in my entire house. the armchair i’m sitting in, the wooden chair at my desk and this wheelchair. it’s empty but it feels like it’s here with me in person. like we’re two old men sitting by the fire shooting the shit.

i don’t think i’m going to keep it, but i’m not going to throw it away. this isn’t a moral story of one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. and some things are just trash. and these things i own i don’t know that i think of them as treasure. i think of them maybe as friends looking for my advice.

Lenny Chernila, from what i heard secondhand, would take objects from someone’s house and put them in someone else’s house. like this belongs here now. some would say that’s weird, or rude. but you don’t own these things, not really. and if they’ve come to you, it’s only fair to know that at some point they’ll leave you.

i don’t know how this wheelchair is going to leave me. i picture a scenario where maybe danger will happen, god forbid, and someone will be incapable of walking. maybe a stroke, maybe a broken leg. and i, walking by, will say, wait here, i have a wheelchair. i’ll run gallantly down to my apartment and grab the wheelchair. that’s too heroic though. this wheelchair doesn’t have a hero complex. but it’s not my chair either. and me, i’m just hear to give it advice, but the older i get, the more i see how unqualified i am in fact to give advice. maybe i should just listen to the wheelchair on this one.

Support me on Patreon.

Honnold Express

over night everything became urgent
the words weren’t even about my fleeting humanity
they were about something else
something i knew i alone couldn’t save
but i had to try
i had been taught that i had to believe i could succeed
but that wasn’t the truth
i thought we’d probably fail
and that was the strange comfort
i used to psych myself out before interviews
tell myself i didn’t want the job
one time i asked my cousin if he’d stop looking at my cards during a game of poker
he was sitting out
you fold under pressure huh he said
it was half true
i felt i could do anything
but if i thought about the stakes it would swallow me whole
the stakes are always high i think
in a world where everything can be devastatingly loud or painfully silent
everything mattered
i seem to surround myself with nihilists
maybe if nothing else just to remind me of the alternative
so what now

there’s this man who freeclimbs these incredible rock walls
hundreds of feet up
no harness
crazy muscles developed in his fingertips
they ask him
what do you do when you get scared?
you can’t
he says
you just can’t
there is no fear

Support me on Patreon.

Hypnic Jerk

as i lay me down to sleep
let be the won wars and lost causes of the day
to leap into strange worlds

worlds where emotions glow like second suns
worlds where eyes see behind them
worlds where truth dives off tongues
like alphabetic letters into the deep end of endless pools
onto swingsets that sway up to the moon
floating above writers clacking at desks in eerie woods
swimming birds and flying fish

and in some true ways
something more sensical than this real real world

i find balance in dreams
the cosmic butter for my charred toast
i find serenity in the letgo
the fallout of power
the disappearance of clocks that tick
sixty seconds in a minute

in dreams
i can be an old man at last
sitting on a rocking chair on the rings of saturn
reading hemingway and drinking irish coffee
and in dreams i can do this forever
and not be late for tea

in dreams
i can find love without politics
my skin absorbed into the wallpaper
and i so unmistakably part of the foundation of the house
babbling on less about oneness and more about allness

it’s all too much in dreams
and that’s why sometimes we keep it there
like a hidden drawer of a music box

it’s all too much in dreams
where the news channel flickers and spins
and it’s november 21st, 1963 forever

in dreams
where gunshots exist like capguns
and cops and robbers ends for almuerzo
a feast of childhood friends

in dreams
where i can finally be a child again
where it takes so much less business to be a child
where i close my eyes and i’m a child
no more business to keep us busy
in dreams where we all can be a child

in allness
in solidarity
in surreal shopless malls
in purity
in strangeness
in death but never ultimate
in always ultimate and fleeting
in unexplored chambers of the dark night of the soul
in love unthought of
in manifesto! in epiphany! in orderless government!
in one billion goofy goddesses and gods
in chains
in freedom
in memory

in deep deep memory
in resonance from all directions of time and space
in dreams

in daring

as i lay me down to sleep
i find myself jolted by a hypnic jerk
a kind of shock
an electric bolt
feels like falling
in that moment just before
you enter the womb of dreams
over and over
a jolt
a shock
a pain
a pain that comes in dark electric waves
over and over
each time i try to enter these dreams

and i tell everyone i meet about this hypnic jerk
about this something
keeping me from dreams
keeping me from half of myself
and everyone says it’s okay
that it’s okay
that it’s okay

and it’s not okay

because in dreams
i am my best spirit
and how now am i to pull that form
that form which i cannot reach
into the poetry of this ticking life?
Support me on Patreon.

Mailman + Dog

Rowdy the dog
just stared
as the mailman
walked into
the liquor store.

“hey bud,”
said the mailman.

Rowdy just stared
and watched him
as he delivered letters
to the liquor man
behind the counter.

there wasn’t a single ounce
of liquor in the bottles
that swayed even a bit
while these two polarized forces
of the universe
meandered a shared space.

but the mailman left
and Rowdy was put at ease.

it was okay.

they both knew
what they were taught to know
about one another
by history
stories passed down through time
but they didn’t have to be those stories.

we inhabit strange spaces
with strange company
and if we can let our guard down
we don’t have to tell the stories
that they expect us to.

Support me on Patreon.