word play

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
lined up
unfurling their linen
at the new dodson day market
bringing the fight
shoring up competition
to its much less dynamic
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
homeless hoodoo guru tarps adding
local colour
ew! ew! ew!
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
mechanical turk
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
antimatter black
gosurori finally swirled into the tilt-a-whirl harajuku kimchi fruit-jambalaya
no wide-eyed-hero hook, no extended visa
catch of the day
red #10
catch of the day
keep going west, life is peaceful there…
bus stops
is that breast cancer thing over yet?
magnetic ribbons
on rent-a-copcars
spelling out pervasive vishnu wishful thinking like
“i like and wholeheartedly support ribbons”
“bring back moustaches”
“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
jacking their bodies
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
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
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.

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
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

so i’m posting it, one of my favourite love poems ever, for the world to read.

by Nora, God of Thunder.

I Could



When I first met you,

in the hot dark by the blue river,

I felt I could read my future in the spaces of your speech.

I felt I could speak you poems built of math

because that is the only language I know

that can encompass the kind of perfection

I need to describe you.

I could write anthologies to you

across my naked breasts

walk across this country topless

knowing that of all the elicited stares

maybe someone would read and know

the history of your beauty.

I could steal my neighbor’s manicured car

camouflage it with the dust of my life

when I leave this city behind to find myself in yours.

-and I know I‘m poor, I have just enough

for a three quarter tank if I‘m lucky-

but I will drive until the car chokes and dies

on that dust.

I will walk ’til I fall

I will crawl if I must

and still sing songs of heat-wave meetings.

I could stretch my hide over a framework of logs,

let the sun harden it to leather,

and then chew it soft

and on it paint your face from memory.

I could give up entirely.

Lay my frame down

and while forests grow between my bones

the curling white fingers of my ribcage

will point to the space left by my heart and say,

This is where love was.

And the trees fed by the body that was me

will grow murmuring leaves

each one whispering,

I love you.

I could be satisfied to be buried beside you,

Or spread on the same wind

So our ashes to ashes

Can have chance collisions

Among these galaxies of bodies.

I might never see you again

But I‘d still devote my words to you

My every day filled

With the soft sad tracings

Of dust and ash on the breath

Of someone saying,

I love you,

I love you,

I love you.”


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…


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.


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:


i still don’t know how to finish it… maybe it’ll never happen…


i’m sitting at a starbucks in cartagena
enjoying the
kenyan blend
when she walks in

no choice but to notice her
with her deep hazel eyes
with her birth of venus hair
skin specked
with cinnamon
legs from here to there
and perfectly shaped breasts obscured
by the hunch of many years of study

no choice but to notice her
to notice her
turning on her heel
and leaving as soon as she’d stepped in
(overwhelmed, no doubt, by the exoticism of the coffee and lifestyle shoppe)

i’m expelled
i leave
i follow her across the way

she makes her way into a columbian-only cafe–i loiter outside
with my iced mocha 20-ouncer melting in the humid wind
into a steamy hot-cold puddle…

i drifted in and out of consciousness all flight from kennedy
one third world to the next

we flew via salt lake city for some reason
maybe to make some sort of a socio-political point

in my stupour, i was seated next to a french couple with one finger missing
who read buffalo-bedecked lonely
planet guidebooks
entitled “ouest americain pour les westmans et les greenhorns”

they were en route to missoula and such
as european tourists are oft wont to do

the flight was otherwise fully filled with men in bad 80s shoulder-pad power-suits
–those never came back, did they?–
many refused their $2 headphones
but laughed nonetheless at Robin Williams’
slapstick mishaps with a recreational vehicle
–it was reassuring to know that the mortal danger on the flickering screens wasn’t going to be actually, you know, MORTAL.

right after the pablum, and to add to the psychedelia of the warped in-fuselage entertainment/stupefication
the besieged and besotted captive audience received a salt-lick doggie treat

on, onto our trays

along with the unrequited love of enriched white flour crackers

and newspaper page-boy-like urgings to purchase
montreal nosebleeds!
we got ’em right here!
get ’em while they’re hot!
montreal nosebleeds!

maybe i was just dreaming
maybe i wasn’t in cartagena at all
but somewhere much worse
like Los Angeles.

maybe she wasn’t real and i was just a jetlag
standing on the hot
pavement like they call it in philadelphia
without my spf 50 pour bébé

too early in the dream for self-analysis, i’m thinking
if this is indeed a dream at all

she saunters out of Little Columbia
as if she had 10 minutes to get across campus

brushes up against me,
(blush, eyelashes and all)
doesn’t notice my not noticing her on purpose
i’m a stranger
and not even a familiar one at that
i want to be upgraded out of coach
i want hot towels, the whole shebang

i stand there frozen
like the 17 1/2 ice cubes i explicitly ordered in my drink
my daily fiber-substitute
my daily parkinson’s

poor choice of strategy
–her stride dissolves her into the chocolate city

i run after her, tap her on the shoulder
ever so lightly

she turns and–


slow down all confrontations
so they run out of steam

pop the hatch on the boiler
step aside
let through
dodge the silver bullet stake burst

let the scalping steam connect with the universe
like a plugged in toaster
plunging into a blood red burgundy lake
freaking out a bunch of well schooled fish hooked on the junk
with its venal dead weight refracted into a thousand points of light

i have a sinking feeling
i have been here before
the bending road, the dusty horizon spent
parabolic flights of fancy
th’long-haul ellipses…
the rumble
of battle drum cylinders

goddamn motherfucking christ i miss you
my fellow adventurer
through the stormy seas
and the universe’s caprices
the maelstrom of anger gives way
to yet another abyss of drowned sorrow
everything’s aswirl
i’m lost

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