The Sound of Rape

Nix Angst! Yells the soldier / who just raped / my wife / in front of our baby / don’t fear! A pat on the shoulder / and an earnest smile / from a man no longer a man / Russki gut! He says / in broken German / I, a half Jew / have been forced / to trade one master for another / and the look on her face is like a shovel dug into my chest / don’t look / she had said / I couldn’t oblige / the wailing of our child / is a train coming to a sudden halt / of steel grinding against steel / of human beings robbing each other of humanity / it is the sound of rape / imprinted into paper skin / of a rose crushed into a book

To the bird lost

Inside the subway tunnel
The frantic bird who’s flying
To and fro
You have forgotten
that the world is open on the outside
That there is endless space
Space that the sky represents
You have forgotten the fresh air
Your little lungs grow spastic
As you tilt your head
Absurdly standing centimeters tall
On a gray subway platform
You have broken my heart, bird
This would have never happened
If we weren’t here
You are God trapped in our small minds
Searching for a way out
You are an embodiment
Of our existence
And that, for human beings
Escape is possible
But improbable

serendipity

as a poet you must live

by your own terms

write poems

not by instruction

boxed in a beige classroom

but in the open air

whether urban or rural

 

as a poet you must breathe

hard before inspiration arrives

but it cannot be forced

a sign must come

most likely as a familiar

bird who lands before you

and tilts its little dinosaur head

questioning your intent

because the right words

won’t come unless you mean them

 

as a poet you must rest

easy after a productive day

even if only a handful

of lines were birthed

even if it seemed

like serendipity

slipped away

fluke

pronunciation: “flooooook”

a noun for fortune

for every word uttered

on the television

every ten word song

written by seven songwriters

every poem written by a robot

or under the influence

of mechanization

 

or, creation via fluke

allowing the truth

to bubble up thru the surface

 

or, a parasite

or, a fish

depends on who you ask

 

a fluke is not a nuke

a fluke is not a matter

of life or death

 

like the last shot you took

or the first time you have sex

 

human civilization is a fluke

and we’re happy for it

 

etymology: parasites

is the common consensus

among scientists

suspension snapped

a bridge painted the same color

as the sky fears its own lack

of identity, staring down into the dark

water beneath its belly

its steel spine itchy from all the vehicles

that traverse its body

the metal pests rub rubber

against its skin

the bridge loathes its condition

and yet its purpose is clear

and it accepts its position with patience

until an earthquake or whirlwind

snaps its suspension and frees it