January 28, 2009
Two lovers are fucking each other to death. In a house on a point jutting into the harbour. The small peninsula sways like a wooden dock with the motion of their bodies. Small waves flee across the bay. The lovers watch indifferently as their bodies near exhaustion. Their voices rise up to clash. I, the woman begins. Never, her lover responds. Boats tied up at the dock become suddenly startled. A new planet passes in front of the moon. The lovers accidentally catch a glimpse inside each other and flinch. The woman’s back arches as the male’s chin rises. And both collapse into each other. And sleep. And retreat into their corpses. Later that morning she slips out of bed and phones the police.
January 27, 2009
In Russia they say that women still walk the streets dressed like nuns. That their faces are waxed daily to remove unsightly hair. That the countryside has been invaded by pestilence invented in the fashion houses of Naples. In Russia they say that everyone laughs but no one speaks their mind. That houses are vacant with people. That snow makes a racket. And drifts aimlessly down the streets and lanes and curls up between the legs of passed-out engineers. In Russia they say that there are no black ghettos. All their ghettoes are Jewish but the Jews have emigrated. In Russia they say that couples fornicate godlessly, alone, with bad breath. That the cinema is boring. That vodka is cheaper than dreams. That there is no pornography. That everyone watches CNN. In Russia is an American television series invented by Hollywood and Wall Street to keep Americans asleep. It is the opiate of the masses. In Russia is America’s nightmare about itself.
January 26, 2009
I Wanted To Go To Vancouver
Her beauty was pornographic. She used it to become famous. I wanted to go to Vancouver and stretch her pain like canvas, stir my brush through her bush. I was young and ambitious and wanted to go the edge of this country and ride the wide suicide of her verse. I think it was the Bardot pout of her lips that made you want to spill paint across her mouth. Or maybe it was the long brown hair falling over her eyes in an ad for seduction poetry that made you want to sketch her naked in the penitentiary of your imagination or take her out into a back alley and punch her lights out.
January 25, 2009
I Can’t Wait Until the Resurrection
I can’t wait until the resurrection and CNN runs out of news. Teeth are brighter. Towels have more bounce. Godzilla makes restitution to Tokyo. Snow is declared one of the seven miracles of the world. America runs out of bullets. Gay marriages are finally recognized as the real cause of the extinction of the dinosaurs. Bankers are forced to crawl through the eye of a needle. Friedrich Nietzsche gets his own talk show. Quebec secedes from itself. Computers are given the right to vote. Recycling becomes a national craze and liposuction becomes mandatory for all patrons of fast food restaurants. I can’t wait until the resurrection and highways are paved over with grass. The assassins of John Kennedy return from their tour of Orion and Taurus. Louis Armstrong is canonized. Elvis retires from his job as a greeter at Walmart. Someone comes up with a cure for progress. And poets are forced to climb down off their high horses and clean up the shit they’ve left on the road behind them.
January 20, 2009
I Am A Landscape Painter
My face is gone. Senses bared like skin pulled back over a face by a coroner. Etherized on a table. I can hear the piano keys playing without fingers. The tenor’s voice has no mouth. I can smell cancer on her clothes. The smooth touch of time between her legs. Taste the liquor of God in the sky. I have lobotomized the education system from every hemisphere. Taken my censors out on the town and gotten them hammered. My wiring is in chaos. The owl is not in the sky; the sky is in the owl. The artist does not stand aloof from his work but steps into the canvas and tries to paint his way out. I paint nothing on the canvas until it is there. The world does not exist; it appears.
January 19, 2009
One part of the world suffers from hemorrhoids while the other half steps silently into death. One part is on a diet; the other part is losing weight. One part is blind; the other part can’t read. One part has calluses on its heart; the other part has calluses on its hands. My ideas aren’t fit for general consumption. Perhaps my work should be exported to some third world country where they will swallow anything. Turning on the television to a talk show. Someone mentions pornography; everyone laughs. I think of television evangelists holding bibles and selling chequebooks. Pay up or God will fuck you! I am seasick. God is the sea is the sky is my stomach rising and diving and screeching in my ear like a gull. Handel’s water music spews out of the tape machine, threads of plastic dripping through my fingers. Our genocide of happiness is destroying the planet. The other part applauds.
January 18, 2009
One of Canada’s premier female painters spread-eagled on a blank canvas, I have drawn as a bed. Black on white. Her dyed red wicket hair spilling like blood across the gesso. Like she’d just been shot in the forehead. I am standing over her, shaking like a murderer. Her eyes are never closed. She wants to see it coming. There is so much disappointment in the trail of clichés that dribble out of her mouth. I want to tell her what I think of her soft porn poetry, but the fragrance of the skin between her thighs seduces me into silence. I want to ask why she is wearing braces on her teeth. And does she keep them sharpened. Danger is part of her allure. But like previous lovers I’d say anything to suck her swelling breasts. I tell her she is beautiful, radiant, exciting. She calls our fucking a great art movement. There was little movement and no art. After our corpses fall apart, I am overcome by a wonderful indifference to her. Telling her the truth would mean I gave a damn. I think she planned it that way.
January 14, 2009
The artist lives through his body. Sweats paint. Pisses in hues. Farts rainbows. His semen is squeezed out of him like oil from a tube. He is as afraid of the white of the canvas as a child is afraid of the dark. The brush is a lie. Every stroke like slapping his wife. He feels himself retreating into the same old bag of tricks. He feels like an actor pushing his latest film on the Letterman Show. And the gallery owners expect him to pontificate. And the accountants expect to invest. And the women on their knees. And the critics looking for ecumenical insights. Everyone wants to talk about sensitivity and insight and the position of the artist on the cultural scene. The painter feels like another piece of work ready to be hung in a gallery. Or from a cross beam in the attic.
January 8, 2009
On the steps of the institution I stood looking out over the rolling green grass and the cement broken path that leads into God’s brain. Friends sat in lawn chair smiles sipping silent lemonade. There was a banner flapping against the wind welcoming me home. Even the sky was polite. People are always courteous to the insane. And my head was blown apart by ideas. A river of tears rolled like tricycle wheels down my vacant cheeks. Am I the landscape artist who paints what he doesn’t see? Who makes up a world of hell in paradise? Who chews off the head of the serpent? Am I the poet deprived of God’s vision, forever imprisoned in the blindness of my own experience? Or just an old fool lost in his childhood wondering why everything appears in threes?
January 8, 2009
A Woman In The Middle Of A Crowd
A woman in her mid 40s waits in the middle of a crowd, surrounded by the backs of men’s dreams. She waits near a clock that drips. Run out of cuteness. Suffering the lack of temptation. Wallpaper peels off the button down suits of old lovers that hang in her closet. And she mixes up their laughs and their wallets. And remembers only the swollen knuckles and their politeness as they dissolve in her photo albums. She pats the couch. What happened to Fuzzy? Where did she go? Her loneliness is filled with goodness. And her emptiness echoes like a cathedral. Curling a string of pearls around her finger she bites down on her lip. If only I had been prettier.