THERE IS SOMETHING SAD ABOUT TODAY AND THAT IS OKAY

there is something sad about today and that is okay
the sun decided to sleep in
the cars they don’t move quickly down their thick lines
the news radio is solemn and uninteresting
in the shower i found myself staring at the drain for way too long
catching up on silly thoughts in my mixtape head
and that is okay
this is all okay

the dynamic of human emotion is dynamic
the hedonists maybe will be filled with disappointment on this one
but not every day is a party
maybe today was the day i was designed to count the sidewalk blocks
as i walked by hundreds of displaced human beings attempting to sleep in the entry ways of local business shops

it is a mistake to think your existence is one of exuberant joy
your existence is rocket ship, yes, probably
but so many tiny broken hands pieced together your engine
so many people stood around just to watch you launch

it only makes sense if you acknowledge the collective experience of us all
maybe god is the devil and humanity has to be its own god
we still haven’t figure out how to combat natural disasters
we still haven’t figured out the most efficient and effective methods of loving one another

so if there is something sad about today then that is okay
this dream is far too valuable to be perfectly utopian
let’s just try to keep our rocket ships directed toward whatever it is above us now
that we find so valuable

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

SOLSTICE APARTMENT SONG

this beard is an aftereffect of me vacating your life
i cannot tell if i’m blossoming in the soil of this apartment
or if i am drowning in dead hair

i want to say that i will continue to grow this beard
until i love myself in a way that is both stable and honest

i want to say that i will continue to grow this beard
until i am no longer seeking happiness
until i can acknowledge what is so plain to see before me:

i am an old man
blind and crippled
down on my knees
searching endlessly for the glasses
that were placed on top of my head
all along

if happiness were a snake it would have bit me
it would have swallowed me whole
and warm in its womb
safe from everything
i would call it overwhelming and temporary

i shirk off rain drops
and drink from my own bathwater

with no pants on
i watch documentary after documentary
on enlightenment
in the dark
on my couch

i trip over my ego
i remove all the mirrors in my house
and put up self-portraits in their place

i have read the first chapter of so many books

i have almost dedicated myself to so many lives

i have fifteen watches
and none of them tell the time correctly

the gilded domed theater of my head though
it’s a fucking renaissance in there
beneath a shining chandelier
sit hundreds and hundreds of patrons
brushing the heat of the revolution on stage off their pale faces
in the gilded domed theater of my head
a mad-haired composer splays his four arms
he commands a war of music
a renaissance
dark deep drums pounded
this ship rows thick through the trenches
violins
the friction of thought with contact

the friction of exhaustion with dream

the friction of chaos with grace

you do not need other people to know what love is

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

I’M IN LOVE WITH MY CELL PHONE

i’m in love with my cellphone
the things it says to me are sweet and sincere and
i can tell that my cellphone is listening to me by the way its light shines on my face

when i wake up saturday morning
my cellphone gives me bad breath kisses
i love when my cellphone is off in the kitchen making breakfast and i can hear it

clacking around with spatulas and non-stick pans

my cellphone asks me every day how i slept
my cellphone texts me when i leave its apartment
it tells me to drive safe and text me when you get home
my cellphone kisses me sloppy and i like that my cellphone kisses me sloppy

my cellphone offers to drive and holds my hand despite driving a stick shift
my cellphone’s hair looks different every day

it doesn’t matter what my cellphone does i always have to run my fingers through
my cellphone’s hair

and when my cellphone and i make love it’s unlike anything else in the world
my cellphone never expects me to make love to her
and i never expect her to make love to me
but we are so in love that we find ourselves making love all the time

my cellphone likes to hear my poems and when i tell my cellphone no no skip that one
that one isn’t very good my cellphone says no no i want to read it even if it’s bad

i guess that’s the thing about my cellphone

my cellphone is so present with me

sometimes my cellphone and i meditate together and when we’re done we give each other
this illuminating hug and we talk about how one day we’ll have a house together and a studio
to practice yoga in and how beautiful our children will be and how we’ll sit back together
and watch them grow up

when i turn off my cellphone it just stares back at me
a black reflection and i look older and kind of stressed out and a little fatter

but the love my cellphone has for me is unconditional and i know that because my cellphone
tells me all the time

my cellphone brings me flowers and not just on valentine’s day
my cellphone brings me flowers on the fourth of july
and mid-october and at three in the morning when i can’t sleep
because i have to fire someone the next day or because my cat died

i’m grateful for my cellphone because i know not everyone has a love like mine

i’m grateful for all of this even if it never shakes out and it might not but i can always
look back fondly on the night my cellphone and i just sat by the lake and counted the ducks
and watched the light show flash across the sky like segmented pieces of some strange dark
puzzle that can’t be contained

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

PORTRAIT OF A FAMILY TRAPPED IN TIME

dog stuck midair
tongue out black eyes wide

baby crying
face all smashed peas
cheeks all tears

cat hiding under bed

chairs are still
were before
extra still

table

dresser

slightly cracked drawers

clock on wall above the fire
the hands together frozen where they are

praying

fire below the clock
frozen flames

master bedroom

the bed all made up

throw pillows

clothes still on
shoes

wife and husband

eyes stuck fixated on a cracked ceiling

their hands so close not touching

painful is the art of silent intention

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

BAREBONES

the poetry is therapy
i mean, that’s the truth of it
and the implicit problem with that
is that there is the wrong identity to therapy
in our culture
probably our world

most of the world

anyways
it’s therapy
the words aren’t fancy
not when they’re any good

i start with something
and keep hitting it
until i get somewhere
and i keep hitting it
til it’s done

and something was solved
but it’s never particularly clear
what was solved

it’s math
it’s strange emotional math
and i dig the fuck out of it

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

Image result for xrays

XMAS

the fan stopped spinning the
dish washer stopped washing a long time
ago so i guess that just leaves me sitting here twiddling
my thumbs til trump jumps into temper tantrum and hits the button
on the big
one
yeah that’s me
trying to find optimism in momentary existential crisis
but on the flip side can
a flower
really grow as big as it likes if it doesn’t
take a minute
to compare itself to the sky which never ends?
i’m just saying
ennui is just a fancy french word for going numb
trying to figure some stuff out but that’s neither here nor there
i guess that’s
what i’m getting at
the fan stopped spinning and there
is a sufficient amount of winter floating around the house
two pbr’s one shaken rolled and lit partridge in the pear tree
you know
i’ll get where i’m headed
i’m resilient
i’ma push through the nihilism
like the militantly happy fucker i am
so here i am you know
merry christmas
hallelujah
amen

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

ALAN WATTS ON THE BACONATOR

Living today the way we do, among the chaos, and here in a time full to the brim with a sense of self-imposed purpose, we really are given no choice, but to consider what it means to be, the perfect hamburger.

Now picture if you will, a cow; spots, four legs, perhaps a bell around its neck. It is, for all intents and purposes, aware that it is a cow. What it is not aware of, is that it may some day be the ground beef patty of an American hamburger.

And does it need to know? It was thinking about this hypothetical cow which led me to consider if we, in fact, have made hamburgers the way best suited for the continuance of humanity, above all things, in pursuit of the perfect hamburger.

Long ago, some man, or woman, some person, decided to recreate a large bovine creature, in part, into the patty of a hamburger. What if that person had not had that inclination? What if they were inclined to translate, say, salmon fish, into a delicious hamburger? What if there were no fish to be had? What if this person had not been? What if this person had opted to dig instead into their own flesh and blood to consider that which we can consider, a hamburger.

Perhaps what happened is what was meant to happen, perhaps not. But I do know this – Wendy’s Baconator (C) is, beyond any fashionable spark of a human doubt, far superior to any other hamburger ever conceived by the human race.

Food scientists, through carefully centralized, organized and deductive research have concluded, in tandem with the scientific method, that when it comes to the hamburger, there can be no doubt, that the combination of beef patty, of cheese and of bacon, is far beyond anything else we, as modern humans, within our realm of thought creation, could induce into existence.

Now, what of those who do not like bacon? You see, there are those among us who do not like sizzling, crispy sensation, delivered to us from pork, from the animal the pig to be consumed by the mouth, and bigger picture, by the human digestive system.

The main question I wish to pose to you is this: if I one refuses to acknowledge, beyond any shadow of a doubt, that there is within the spectrum of human personality, those living among our large tribe, who do not like bacon, do they truly exist? Do they have to exist? And if you join in this larger thinking, in this collective mentality that if we focus energy on the idea that those who do not like bacon do not exist, how would it be possible that they would truly exist? I think of the old question, the old allegory regarding a tree in the woods. If a tree falls in the woods, and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

So for our purposes I ask, if we acknowledge that it is absurd, that it is impossible to not like bacon, especially to not like bacon when paired with cheese on top of a delicious Wendy’s Baconator (C) hamburger, do those people exist?

I believe they do not.

This is the nature of human beings, really. To be able to see that at the core of human life is the identity of an undeniable attraction to the perfect hamburger, which is, as science provides us, The Baconator (C) from Wendy’s restaurants.

We are limited only by what we allow ourselves to see as the perfect hamburger. But if we can escape our ego, and see the eternal, immeasurable, objective reality of hamburgers, we can then acknowledge that the perfect hamburger is in fact the only and only Baconator (C).

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

CENTRAL PARK LOVE STORY

A man sat at dinner with his beautiful wife in a restaurant in New York City.

The restaurant was nice. Very nice; the kind of place that not just anyone could get into. The kind of place with chilled salad forks and tiny portions and luminescent views of Manhattan.

The beautiful wife was seven months pregnant. They were out celebrating their one year anniversary. She was radiant. One of those women who maintained her glamour even through pregnancy.

They spoke of their marriage and all of its successes. They spoke of their excitement to be parents and how privileged they were to live among the business elite in one of the most coveted cities in the world.

The man’s gold watch shined brightly in the white light of the upscale restaurant.

The man told his wife that he had been thinking about things and that he really wanted to be a dinosaur that lived in Central Park.

The woman laughed, and said, yes, and I would be a giant squid that made its home in the main pool of the Manhattan Rec Club.

They smiled at each other.

The man told his wife he was serious. That his life with her was rewarding and beautiful and heartwarming and gratifying, but he wanted to be a dinosaur who lived in Central Park.

The wife looked blankly at her husband for some time. Told him this wasn’t even funny anymore. Told him she was confused. A great silence overcame the couple. A tension shared by both their sommelier and their waiter as they came to see if they would like more wine and to deliver the check respectively.

That night they lied beside each other in bed in their beautiful apartment in the heart of Manhattan but the great silence remained.

In the morning, the woman awoke and her husband was gone. She put her hands on her stomach and she began to cry. It was not a weeping cry. It was an empty, almost tearless, cry. The kind that fills you with confusion and then like the wind being knocked out of you, even that is then gone. It was a very empty cry.

Meanwhile, the man went to a costume shop in Manhattan. He flipped through a catalog of costumes and requested that the costume shop employee bring him, of course, the dinosaur costume to purchase. The dinosaur was the Tyrannosaurus Rex. So named for its perception by human beings as having been a superior being in the dinosaur kingdom.

The man put on the costume and stopped by the bank. He had his funds transferred to his wife’s account.

And finally, the man went to Central Park, where in his dinosaur costume he roamed the great trees, the great fountains, the great green fields of the park. Day and night he roamed as the dinosaur he felt deeply in his heart he was meant to be.

He was in love.

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016

PAST LIVES

my friend told me that she wears gold bracelets because she believes she was cleopatra in her past life
says she has nightmares where she is weeping for the death of marc antony
or that she is rolled up in a carpet being smuggled into caesar’s palace
she tells me it’s where she gets her fire from

i told her that i suspect in my past life i was steve gordman, an overweight mustachioed used car salesman from duluth, minnesota in the late 1970s
at times, i wake up in the middle of the night, and i swear my clothes smell like exhaust fumes and fried chicken
i believe this is where my mediocre selling abilities come from

i mean
that’s the thing about past lives, guys
if they’re a thing, they’re not always gonna be winners

sometimes you’re cleopatra
and sometimes you’re steven gordman
used car salesman from duluth, minnesota

COPYRIGHT BRICE MAIURRO 2016