Despotic little idiot man…


Baby-dicked bully…


Your face makes me feel like throwing up.
The television screen is on fire.
Burnt orange used to my favorite color.


What if this all a weird dream?
And tomorrow I will wake and you’ll
just be back on NBC?





Mine’s a little mind but it knows
to be kind. Your furrowed brow
turbine grinds my mind.
Why can’t you be kind?




flushed in wonderment, I used to scream for hope;
stuffed with puzzlement, now I just scream to stop.






You are the un-greatness you rail against,
gold-plated, tone-deaf greedy leprechaun.
I’m scared of your spittle, like brittle
quills of porcupine made into a pillow.


I’m just a little fool but I don’t
want to be fooled. It’s a little life,
but it’s mine.



but a lot of things aren’t like they used
to be.



A Little Like a Very Slow Plane…

Seagulls flapped around the trash can. They banged their big wings against the metal drum, their beaks raging against an unopened bag of Doritios. Steven took his keys out of his shorts and put them in the little pocket of his backpack. This was the spot the Earth succumbed to the sea. A great blending of the elements. Of attraction… us to oblivion. This is where what Man built becomes irrelevant.

Steven leaned back on the towel and wiggled his body into the sand, keeping his knees bent and his back flat so his legs formed a little lean-to.

He then spoke to his girlfriend by speaking directly into the air “There’s an oyster bake at Ken Richardson’s place tonight,” he announced into the distribution of air particles.

Chelsea finished watching a Snapchat video before turning toward Steven. There were invisible waves everywhere. She asked, “Do you like this bikini,” forgetting his question, but shaking her shoulders in a lackadaisical and sexy way that made him feel powerful. She was 23 and beautiful and he had no idea how fast it goes.

The bikini was hideous. Steven told her he liked the bikini even though he didn’t. It’s just so much easier to lie sometimes. It was white with a solid black stripe that made it look like her nipples were being censored. But her skin was covered with a blond down that made her nearly naked body shine in the Hampton light, so he didn’t really look at her bikini, anyway.

There were filters for everything.

She adjusted her top so her breasts oscillated in a way that hypnotized him. She caught him staring and laughed. For a second he felt like sucking his thumb.

He was stoned. Everything was glazed and magnified. There was four hundred dollars in his pocket. His timepiece was hand built by a 77 year-old Swiss watchmaker who never drove in his life.

There was an expensive tattoo of a birdhouse on her right shoulder done by a Japanese artist in New York. Her sandals were woven Cambodian balsa wood. The sun covered her body with delicate needles of light.

“Don’t do anything for a moment,” he told her, motioning for her to put her phone down.  Then he tilted his head back and squinted at the faint and feckless sky. “It’s so beautiful,” he said, taking off his glasses.

Chelsea set her phone down on the blanket where it sunk into the folds, and turned her cinnamon freckles up to the cloudless sky in a graceful manner that seemed to stop time. The sun obliterated all depth from the sky. It was like looking at a piece of blue paper. Like that brilliant flash right when your computer wakes up. Only their physical bodies mattered in this picture.

Side by side, their flesh glistened in perfect symmetry, like an optical illusion,  and it was all completely intentional, this photogenic pose. Chelsea and Steven. Their thing was being perfect together.

Exceptional in an one-dimensional way.

There’s was a carefully curated universe.

“Can you hear that?” Steven asked, shielding his eyes to scour the sky for the source of a cranking hum that slowly gained in frequency and decibel.  A sort of dream-wobble approaching… a churning of of molecules that filled their eardrums with oatmeal.

They both looked and listened and wondered.

“Is it a plane?” She asked.

It was a plane. They spotted it at the same time, flying really slowly, dragging a banner advertising the price of Gino’s on the Beach’s World Famous pepperoni slice. Steven has been there before, one time, before Chelsea. It came toward them up the shoreline. The way it flew didn’t seem plausible. It was only thirty feet above the water and seemed to be barely going thirty miles an hour. It chugged along and Steven fantasized about jumping up and grabbing the banner and yanking the plane down with it, but since they’re so close to the water, they’d land all gently and everybody would be alright and they’d all share a tremendous laugh about it.

He’d have drinks later with the survivors.

Chelsea looked over and shrugged. “Where’s my phone?” She asked, raking the blanket for it. Steven watched with a dull desire a hot day like today brings out. Once she found it again, she said, “Smile,” then cocked her phone at him and snapped his picture. Giggling, she called him handsome. The day shed another coat of paint.

Chelsea held the photo for him to see but he couldn’t make out anything out in the glare. It’s all a blur anyway.

It didn’t matter.

Later tonight there was an oyster party at the Randolph’s place on the beach. It was supposed to be just as beautiful tomorrow. There was always something to do. Steven thought about the time he was at Gino’s, there was woman in line whose purse was made of fake leopard fur. There was a fly on the red pepper shaker.

He looked out at the sea and the whitecaps and the thought of pizza stirred a numbness that had settled at the bottom of his soul.

The grease and those paper plates and especially the tourist types hanging around.

The gross devouring.

The idea of it all made him melancholy.

Yet, he didn’t know why, he was just glad he wasn’t one of them.

A Grave in Burbank

The dead have no use for us.

All we are are just a bunch of noisy, yammering bipeds. I came to this conclusion upon a trip to visit my dad’s grave. My dad was cremated so I’m not even sure if ‘grave’  is the right word. But he’s in the ground in a cemetery so I guess it is.

Forest Lawn is in Burbank, California, right behind Warner Brothers Studios. I don’t know why’d you want to spend eternity in Burbank, but that was his final wish (along with, please don’t let me die, I’m sure). After my older sister asked him what he’d like us to do with his ashes, expecting him to say ‘spread me out at sea’, he told us, “Somewhere by grandma, near a nice little tree.”

My dad is up the road from his mother and under a sweeping oak. The cemetery is a vibrant carpet of green grass with a cute white chapel at the bottom of a rolling hill. There’s no denying its serenity.

The sprawl of the San Fernando Valley is in the distance and seems like another world.  Millions of people sleeping in beds and driving in cars, wrapped up in a life that is equal parts limitless and fleeting. All the fucking going on. And fucking over.  Just a giant fuckfest. While all these dead people sleep.

The living are still going about it all wrong.

I got out of my Volvo and found my dad. They’re still in the process of creating the grave tablet so for now there’s nothing with his name on it to look at. All the other headstones are for people who’ve died a long time ago.

Not one year ago to the day.

I wondered who visits them? What do they say?

I wondered what I’m supposed to say.

I sat on the curb and tried not to look awkward, which is basically impossible in a cemetery. I stared at my feet and made sure to keep my new white high-tops out of the dirt. When the groundskeepers drove by in their jeeps, I didn’t know if I was supposed to wave or not. I felt silly worrying about my new white high-tops. Why do I even own a pair of white high tops? I walk too much for that.

There was a funeral procession making their way up the road. I waited for them to pass. A series of cars with the headlights on in the day. Shining for what? It’s all part of the business of burying the dead. The following of rituals so we can distract ourselves from what we’re really doing. With the solemn parade passed I returned to my own business.

I wanted him to know I cared. That I remembered. I came.

I began to talk. I started with work. I told him about the show I work on. I told him that I missed him, then I laughed out loud about talking out loud. Then I told him about Monkee, my cat. He was a veterinarian and cats were a soft spot for him. I told him how much I loved Monkee, and that sometimes I wish I could tell him about Monkee on the phone, because I forget he’s gone. And because that cat means so much to me. I got Monkee at a time I was losing control and adrift in a kind of self-loathing leaking raft and that little four-legged furball sorta brought me into port. That’s how I explained it.

We’re buddies… That little furball and me. He looks after me as much as I do him. Is it weird to think that a little bit of my dad lives in that cat? Or more like sometimes when I look at that ornery feline asshole I see him with my dad’s eyes.

How do you visit a grave and not think about the soul?

I mean: is he in that little demarcation of terra firma? Was he listening? Was some piece of his ear still working? Some speck of cochlea tingling?

Were we chit chatting in any way whatsoever?

If I were a free-floating soul, I wouldn’t hang out in Burbank. Although, I hear they’re getting a Shake Shack soon. No, wait, that’s Glendale. The whole Valley terrifies me. I want no part of it, living or dead. His last years were spent on cruise ships and in fine dinning halls…

I thought I was going to leave around 10 o’clock and still found myself there twenty minutes later. Then it was an hour later. The morning had slowly grown stubble and was becoming afternoon. I had nothing more to talk about. I just hung out and counted the leaves.

There was a nagging thought pin-balling through my brain. I didn’t really like the idea that maybe he’d get the impression he had to stick around Burbank. Like, he felt responsible to be here if I came back. I tried to explain that I can feel him everywhere. I don’t need to be here to see him.

He should really fly, now’s the time for it. I let him know it. But I still will come. I just won’t come for you, I’ll come for me.

I told him, “It is a nice little tree.”

The Little Delaware

6 feet of windblown glass.

Little holiday light.

An olive book of poems.
A necklace of magnets.

They say…
Don’t set sail with a man who never
sailed the mighty Mississippi.

I say…
If the wind is right, and the tide is high,
I might be the man to sail the little Delaware.


Mr. Jenkins

There is a basil plant lost in the shadows. Once upon a time the family used it in fresh pasta sauce, now it wilts in the coming and going of a busy kitchen. Nobody has watered it so its leaves droop like the shoulders of a brow-beaten husband. The kids have gotten used to it so they no longer talk to it like it’s a pet, especially since they got Marxie, the stupid Golden Retriever. There’s no room for it to grow in its pot where it sits in the window looking out on a vast green world it knows nothing about. There are drawings the kids did on the fridge. It’s only piece of pride in the world is in the bottom corner a drawing of it lives, with the moniker Mr Jenkins written in purple crayon above it.

He never liked that name, always felt it sounded too formal, but now that poor basil plant wishes it were called it one more time. For old times sake.


Waxing about Girls

We’re oscillating wildly while we fossilize in space
Oscar Wilde’s disappearing face chasing a ghost
through time and wasted satori growling and grousing
about the swings of tide and ego and pride while
we flicker like lambent flames searching for moths
holding on to rotting fence posts in deserts outposts
drinking whiskey and tripping daisies lazy afternoons
Eighteen years old wasting bottles of Boones
philosophizing about the moon and waxing about girls
in bedrooms and boys in basketball shorts I rode
a broken horse into a deserted town just to taste the
dark blood on the ground and scrounge for tinsel
to pin to my crown with a proper grin and bottle of gin
my heart fades fast in the collapsing afternoon
summer thunderstorms I come home and
rip the doorknob off…


An Amber Rose by any other name…
might not be the same.

— You see, poetry can be funny.
My heart is a monkey wrench. Come tune me up, baby.
Life is a puppet show. Come put your hand up my ass.
I’m sixteen leagues deep with a Persol snorkel.
A leftover turkey thrown in the crock pot.
— You see, after it all, I’m going to fall.

Drop sail.

I’m going to anchor in a port-o-call
court of law.

Drop trow
in a chop shop.

I’m a little nutmeg
looking for eggnog.