Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Doorman

“All maps have their martyrs -- their half-sacrifices, stillborn heroes who suffer themselves a lifetime of unrest only to add another wrinkle to the edge of the latest atlas. These unsatisfied explorers believe that they are extending the light of the known world, when they are really just embellishing the edge of some uncrossable nothingness. How many men have lost their minds, or driven themselves to ruin seeking no more than the blank space that buzzes behind their thoughts? These are the truly deranged, for they would eagerly shatter their skulls against a door for one whiff of the exotic air on the other side of it.

"Any room or house is no different, once you evacuate the world from its interior, there's always someone willing to shed their blood upon its doorsteps. Indeed during the course of my tenure as doorman this sturdy cut of oak has been saturated forty times over, no longer resembling a door, but a blood clot. And so wrought it is with that metallic stench, that the many contributing their paint to this laughable mural have begun to believe it made out of impenetrable iron. But even this doesn't stop them from asking for admission. Nor are people so familiar with the intricacies of their anatomy, that they know the purpose of a clot; to the breathless world on the other side of the door they are no better than bacteria, or a superfluous sperm cell.

"Still, they continue to come, droves of them, and my duty gets no easier: as long as you arrive, I remain, as long as there persists your maniac desire to commit horrendous acts of self-immolation before the door just to say 'I was there,' I am here, as long as there remains in your brain some compulsion to contribute more pigment to an ever darkening door, I am here.

"All you interminable inhabitants of the world, all you who leave your humble lives of gentle decay to come here, for God knows what," now wept the doorman, "why? All you mundane explorers who would risk all you hold dear for this insatiable morsel, why? Why when you approach a door do you immediately seek a passage? What grand reprieve awaits you behind that lifeless piece of wood, what new world devoid of unrest beyond that mouth coagulated shut? What are you all after, after all, after what, after all?"

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Consecrated by an angelic sense of estrangement before all things worldly, and debased by an inability to carry any idea beyond a dumb, mechanical incantation, I can only imagine such is the lot of those few fully given to the insubstantial -- who, when divested of the prophet's steady brow and sun-gilded cheeks, are no more than twittering machines, energized only by a fear of a world otherwise.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

NEW BLOG, though I'll continue to post on this one

There's a link to it on the left-hand side, but here's the address:

I've been wanting to embark on a large critical/poetic project for a while now -- this is my first attempt at one, though I'm sure it will only interest a handful of you (which makes it a handful of a handful).

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


And him, O him, who won us once
descending from the room -- who fell
despite himself like pigment upon the city’s grid

to name him now remembers only dust,
who carried himself vacantly
from sky to skeleton, a good man

strange, though, to render the speck of him
whole, for a habitat endlessly lensed,
him was an angel of sorts, an insect

to our skyline, and we, the blur
fogging nearby some enfacing window,
whose lives till then had arched towards a dream,

a stranger, all along, he had been,
attending a wholly different time,
for us he tended to, a ghostly novice.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Woke up, it was snowing --
wrote it was raining in the notebook:

it rained, it snowed,
I shut a window

with an impotence
of trying to close another’s eye,

and overlooked.
Sin and Sleep share that messianic affliction to time in that I never know how much dead weight I am accumulating: the former in pages of God’s book, the latter in the scrolls of history. But if one can sleep a sin off, maybe the dream can occupy that threshold between having read and having written.

Sunday, June 07, 2009


The original impression endures,
from where the world discloses itself --

apologetically, more than was asked for,
the screen glowed with a perilous vision.

We could not see a difference in texture,
description or regret, it did not matter.

One went further until one could go no longer:
the ruined house just the same as you left it.

Still, we struggled to keep the water over our heads,
till this dreamy material wore itself thin.

To those with anything to lose it was a reassurance;
we went towards our wet tents to sleep.

Living in a city perennially alarmed.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Had he known that his adventurous turn
too suddenly away from home
would tantalize him with the image of a life

perpetually lost, then he might have saw,
or in that same dream, reawakened, finally see,
unlike one acquitted by sleep, a picture

of the world without him -- better there
and friendlier the frailties, though nullifying:
what remains of criminals barely forgiven

but a guilt more guilty of than the thirst itself --
a paradise for poor men, consumed
of themselves devotedly as fruit.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

The New World

His look, her sigh held strange acquaintance with finality, when, pausing again to articulate the problem, their resignation, appearing to outlast the flesh itself, saw the founding rock become the sharpener: what left was there for maxims to identify, but rubble, its nameless sacrifice for the future -- what dark exactness of feeling,
extracted from a book, was to be found here, with quiet reverence, for the stricken house left behind?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Returning Home

You will suppose, stepping past the frame,
that love’s bond endures steadfast as oaken
doors -- your presence would oil some broken
hinge, opened, dog-eared, to a cherished time.
But twenty years of blood will fail to save
you guilt, or hesitate to tell you of
your import in a house you must always
part, and for the death of you could never face.

Still, you stand enduringly out of place,
propped, like luggage, against this stairwell niche:
that arch -- alleged to fit a coffin’s base --
would once accommodate your mortal strain,
bracing the box’s mass and bearer’s pain,
if only long enough to scratch an itch.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Prelude to the Sirens

for M.H.

If I could hold my eye against the It --
or yet confront its likeness in the one
I love, still I, too close, would have vanished
as an image toward a stigmatism;

that law -- which in a dream estranges us
from the engraven word -- restores the knife
its seal: the wax, so inward pushed, retains
a guilt of nearness tenderly endured.