photography


Around the corner, along the rough and tumble
cobblestone bike route,
a woman is pushed out of
the passenger door
of a Kenworth truck—
—so hard that she misses all the steps on the way down.
Her body slams the sidewalk with a hollow thump,
concrete on concrete.

The truck drives off in a huff,
the clanging of the rapidly-shifted gears
evoking the metallic taste of hunger.

Around the corner, a block down,
a little Asian girl is running down the street,
on a cellphone,
laughing,
chased by two slightly older boys, her entourage.

Around the corner,
the meatiest of meat restaurants
shares a wall
with a most enlightened,
higher-state-of-consciousness teahouse.

shakti and memphis blues, together at last

Around the corner, in a lengthy line at th’ deli
desperate throngs long
to relive
GOOD OLD DAYS OF EASTERN BLOCK FOOD STAMP FRENZY
WITH NOTHING IN THE BELLY
It’s their chance to take home
in a fancy bright orange bag
a chunk of mortadella,
(a fizzy 15% fruit juice beverage in a nostalgic bottle)
and a piece of bread resembling a flattened penis of a camel
or some other such mammal.

Around the corner, across the street,
gino mammoni
warn each other sternly:
“hey, you betta watcha your house, huh!”
And crusty old men
mamma mia!
at the passing lipstick lesbians.

Around the corner, downhill,
insecure,
hyberbolic,
starving-artist whores
bend themselves over a splintered soapbox—
—and pour their heart out, trying to score.
(It’s tricky, but the break-neck quickie brings them over the edge each and every time.)

Around the corner, on the other side of the hill,
the best jug band in the world
plies the drowning Liquor Store patrons
with the creakiest licks of sorrow.

Around the corner from there,
in an alley,
a found note:

To the dude in need of a helmet,
I can’t seem to find one for you,
I guess they’re pretty scarce
what with the construction boom and all.
Try Tradeworks.
Also, Dick’s Lumber on Gilmore is hiring.

The note has a rough drawing of a cute lil pink helmet.

Around the corner from where I live,
a stylish woman in her 30s
emerges from an unkempt Vancouver Special,
yelling back at the occupants:

Thanks Joanna, some friend you are!
I’ll just go and see Chris, give him head.
Hopefully he’ll have some dope.

Around the corner, by the docks, seagulls mingle with cranes.

they’re dancing heroes
in a beautiful coordinated dance
at the temple
in lockstep
smoking marlboros
a thick cloud
near Japantown
the 100% pure white
merchants
lined up
unfurling their linen
warez
at the new dodson day market
bringing the fight
shoring up competition
to its much less dynamic
beached
white dust
nighttime version
au roaring glaze du demi-
monde “riche”
beside the blue box

makes sense to keep it going this way, don’t it?
don’t kill ’em, just keep ’em desperate
they’ll thank you for it.

now imagine: a shuttered-down starbucks

Phase 2

shuttered down starbucks

sales sales sales
buy now before shit gets any cheaper!
sails sails sails
of restless
listless
homeless hoodoo guru tarps adding
boho-hobo
local colour
ew! ew! ew!
whew…
hues
masts and sails
adding them to the blown masts
of the cranes
raising hell
like a titanic
to the breathless breathalyzer circus side-show paradise
that itself leaks green tarp
closer to the centre-ville
the white sheet
twister mat
blotted blotto
covering up a shopping cart
sweat-soaked
mechanical turk
lovers
sleeping it off in the place that will keep ’em safest during the earth’s rapture
in a doorway
click-click-click… FUCK this moneyshot canon!
please change batteries AGAIN?
the russian-roulette roll spins in its tight-grip housing grave
robson & granville
in front of the 7-11
(never forget)
the street smells like pinball
a pinch of head-to-toe
heel-and-toe
antimatter black
gosurori finally swirled into the tilt-a-whirl harajuku kimchi fruit-jambalaya
OF VANCOUVER.
no wide-eyed-hero hook, no extended visa
red-candy-red
catch of the day
red #10
catch of the day
keep going west, life is peaceful there…
lavender
bus stops
is that breast cancer thing over yet?
chicken-hawk
yellow
magnetic ribbons
on rent-a-copcars
spelling out pervasive vishnu wishful thinking like
“i like and wholeheartedly support ribbons”
or
“bring back moustaches”
or
“somewhere over a rainbow”
junkies nervously lining up at
the shoppers drug mart checkout
to get their sharp quills
to blot their page with ink
to dot their Is with pig offal
on their pasty white cellulose skin
before the epiphany fleets
flitting to/fro sketch artists gorging
capturing the zen that never rests
jokers
aces
kings
queens
jacking their bodies
playing
davie croquet
the beaver is dead, jim.
(while i wrote this, everything that wasn’t screwed and bolted on my bike behind me
got gold-teeth t’ieved
at least they’ll dine on the finest hommus and poppy seed squares this city has to offer
right
in front of the long skewer
in front of stephos)


et maintenant, au retour au grande ville
ceviche derviche
dans la boîte de nuit
de Don Diego de la Bodega
the pious incense billows out in nebulous circles
like a billiard ball cigarillo loco (jamais/ka/rabbinical)
out of the debased, raw, sly dancehall
there’s an operetta on every street corner
a concert in every car
you have to send out search parties
just to find the signal in the scratchy noise
you might have to get a vanity licence plate
H8 PAIN
LIV LFE
DI TRG
liv lfe gif
all roads lead to budget
under the collosseum
all roads lead to...
you must live
in concord
in concert
in peace
in the balmy climbs
of españa–it’s not just for fascists anymore
up up up up the tinseltown twister of all four caterpillar pillars
don’t get me wrong
i love the beautiful birds–white & yellow & red & brown
hopping to reach the scotch sky on one leg,
then on the other
craning their slender necks in the wind
perfectly balanced on the edge of collapse
at the terminal end of common good
past the white down pillow
the half-erased chessboard
on the north side of the disco ball
with a lone bmx BK knight
and two empresses-in-waiting in yellow
taking turns on the phallic playground slide
“it’s science”
(you wouldn’t understand)
the disposable heroes
the disposable joints
under the viaduct…sometime
(just) can’t get enough
the pirouettes of the sandpaper snowboarder
follow the path of his own disease
tapping the syrup from the maple
have you seen him?
a shell of a graffitoed veeped gurney
sans patricks
fenced and graffitoed police van
man, i have to piss!
will i ever get home?
i don’t want to keep adding to this ambient smell of garbage.
*sigh*

all right, i’m getting used to it…
onwards onwards onwards
around the corner
the overpass suites
the S.O.L. rooms
the gong
show must go on
weathered asian skin doing
falun-chi
on a tarp
beside a tent
adanac ho…!!!!!
wait, something’s backwards here
something’s really wrong…

forced-occupancy real-estate nowhere to be found
except in the walkable jjacobsean neighbourhoods of hades
past the cerberus
of downtown, of east side
one year, i moved to the butt-bra canton of kits
(whoa, dude, this is not the res anymore)
and apart from the staple of safeway
i was like, where did the misery go?
meanwhile, here lies
the deserted trail of breadcrumbs and lucky marbled starch beef sashimi
it’s like the brown sugar oregon trail
except you don’t die of dysentery
well, ok, some might
i need to wash the breakbeat shivers
off my spinal column
turn off the tap
the blood red alley welcomes you
with arms wide open
fold into it at 440 rpm
the supply here is measured in units of
miles per hour
just another few warehouses
just a few more intersection joins
a few pretty pretty street unions
180 more degrees of freedom
a few more creamy A-line cones
hold that pitchfork perfect
while dancing on the reggae rooftop edge
of art and tech
rooftop party view 1
one night it’s leo leo leo leo leo, the victorious and the nevada-bound
another night it’s too many M&M&M&M&Ms
listless and fish-flavoured, of course
just keep going
just put your head down
just hold tight
just tie it in a knot
one day it’ll happen
one day
one day
it’ll all come true

i unfurl the linen gate open
plunge headspun-headlong into a brand new flooded basement.
with a dog named Roxy.
i’m home again.

partial view from front porch

sorry, using the prodding of a new friend to put everything i have here in vancouver up all at once… she says, hey, put up a poem or something, so i can read it. so what does martin do? he types in the entire contents of his notebook. such a freakin’ nerd. the contents of Apocrypha (my other collection) will go up in about a month.

i wrote this one kind of as a pastiche of drive-by observation whippet-snippets while driving down the length of santa monica boulevard in the midde of the night about a year ago… which is a semi-surreal experience i’d highly recommend to anyone…

DESERTED LOS ANGELES AT 2:30am

405 lively but flowing free
like a river it paved
the way
santa monica blvd wide open

temple bar–billie jean

zanzibar–nice beats, too many dress-too-impress types, moving on
took smb all the way to sunset

little temple–closed–milling outside, graph, sales.

before that, midnight tacos–busy

before that, smb @ ?–PACKED with cleancut drunken hordes, and a few men embracing not in a drunken way

suddenly, pawn shop. then “nude adult” joints. this is where it changes.
salvadorean cuisine. everything falling apart
with many small businesses stuck in the cracks

outside little temple–looks like a “residential” area. just enough so i feel i shouldn’t piss in a corner here.
the smell of urine hangs over the whole neighbourhood. perfect level of seediness, with the replete old guy with headphones cliché, a shopping cart on the move here and there.

it took roughly a half hour to get from wilshire & 10th to here. the cool sketchy area’s been going for a while. seemed like it could just keep going in any arbitrary direction. but as soon as i turned the corner onto sunset, the giant robot store told me the funk begins and ends here.

steepest slope ever–

is it obvious? can you tell i’ve been gorging on poetry lately? that and music and friends are what keeps me going.

p.s.

i’m going to take a blind guess and say “no relation”, but… it’s uncanny… and it’s on every bus stop in vancouver:

IMG_4277

the art of memorization

would do well to take

lessons from chemistry.

because memorization is

just adding more stuff

to the mixed up concoction

in my swirling ball of wax brain,

neurons on fire.

01_final_weekend 001

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i was riding Victoria
drive
on my bike
with a pink kids’ horn

295016561_857818b631_m.jpg
wearing a pink t-shirt
you know, to match
i was riding slowly
because my right hand was guiding a–
let’s call it a–
girls’ bike

it also had a pink kids’ horn

her name was miele

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i took the sidewalk
so i could take my sweet time
smell the pink roses

got stuck behind a shopping cart

man he looked like

he’s lost a fight or two in his life

won a scavenger hunt
or three

he started to move aside
i said, it’s ok, i’m going pretty slow anyway.
he then moved aside in a much more pronounced
and deliberate
way

(i guess some people don’t like tailgaters)

“you need a partner,” his coarse voice rasped
i don’t know if he was offering assistance
or if he was commenting
that the pink horn brigade was missing a key member

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“she’s gone,” i blurted out, and pedalled away
to the bike shop
to get a shipping box.