Dude, I just moved and I’m so pissed that I can’t find my Josh Bell. So I started reading my compact OED, because it’s just fun. I feel like a little kid with a flashlight.
Flowers as Mind Control
I want some of that good Parmesan
the thinly shaved stuff they keep
in the cheese cooler that stands alone.
This morning I wanted to kill myself.
But I can’t get to New York for a last slice
so this Parmesan will have to do.
I look at my dog,
my dog that will not poop
when it’s been raining,
even if it’s been days.
I thought, you saved me once.
I should get you the good cheese.
You, who are weirdly afraid.
I could feel the silence
that belongs to everyone
as I pulled into my very last parking spot.
I’d been crying for some time, and the rain
made the town steam like a fresh bun.
And then, the cute man
I saw the other night at the bar
walked towards my car—
I will say the flowers here in Tallahassee
are really something. And sometimes
I use them as wistful symbols for
when my brain and my heart were calm
when I used to watch my brother fall asleep
on a blanket my mother made from soft scraps
always in front of the sliding glass door
while it rained—
if cute man walks into the store,
now just a passing pair of downcast eyes
that need something, maybe touch
I will go on living,
but he passed the ATM
and kept walking.
I bought a tomato and drove home.
I thought about
my buck-toothed cousin
who finally overdosed like a giant rat
in some Florida motel; I can’t believe
how awful we are
when our guard is down
to the level of fuck it.
The last time I felt like this,
I was buried in the specifics of a bagel
I shared with a friend
and he told me
You really need to get laid.
At this point, you’re thinking
that I have a problem with food.
But, I don’t. And these times
are troubling enough for a person to strap
an explosive vest to their body
and pull the rip chord on everyone’s misery—
I’m not going to kill myself.
I’m certain that tomorrow
I will be a great person.
I have pictures to prove it.
When I used to sing
House of the Rising Sun
loud enough to actually slap the sun,
I would grip the microphone stand
and shove it between my legs
because cold metal was more than enough.