#38

LB Sedlacek
Light Bulb Heat

Under yellow lights
Or sometimes white
Arguably brighter at night
Or on cloudy days
Beneath the blue mountains
Inside the valley.

A city sleeps
Until morning when
Tires mate with asphalt
Mixed with granite,
Or shiny flecks of mica,
That glitters like silver.

The streets glisten
Like gems on display —
Organic costume jewelry;
(Like on those TV shopping channels)
Fake glass and food coloring
On a giant Birthday cake,

Where the candles always glow
Unless there’s a power outage
A finger snap back in time
With oil lamps, or fireplaces
And black pots and kettles
Calling each other names.

 

 

Ed Baker
Stone Piece

on the stove-top is a rock a stone sculpture a stone is old as old as she is old and her
essence is old is not precisely her nor meant to be or can it be not Stone is ancient
giving Old Stories psalms within it s context just what is left written in image on top of
hot Sierra wood-stove (also old) coffee-pot percolates and the scent she-scent wafts
and lingers in the sound: p e r k l o p! purr-kloph! in every dark corner of the room
beyond the light and heat she-gone her laughter gone her baby nursing gone into
re;mains this burning note she left re;minds /f rom here to there to a farther there-fore
so, I can only ‘speechless’ gaze into the flame outside the heat the wind/chill pins me
down this sudden winter comes in entirely beyond cloud sleeping she-child here
again, in mind, suckles tiny-tawny-tiddies sound of rain sucking wind driven to rain
giving another log put on fire warmth and light cat curls into blanket yawns into the
daily Times wants nothing what needs anybody another useless “Travel Diary”?
mendicant walking is in mind only subject is subject in bedded in this note and postcard
from Manhattan “‘wish-you-were-here’. am on my way to Bequie in February”1969!
jeeze here it is 11.12.2007 the card still here the note burning the smoke the chill
the rock on the stove-top hot she remembers every nook-and-cranny and what s more
every word s nuance on a stack of bibles sutras abound I betcha the bible in that
honky-tonk motel she left only this burning…. while on that table that book and a
quarter for the vibrating bed…. put another (quarter) in and feel the vibes post-card
from Manhattan
note from here her sent a priori I re:flect : “don’t forget to water the cactus, dear”.

 

 

John Rocco
Zoo

Ritalin harvest and it’s Halloween
Funny Death disguised everywhere
as the Transformers and Dracula has risen
from the grave again as always.
At the zoo it’s even weirder
with the bulging snakes and fast turtles
and elevated giraffes and scratching baboons
undisguised but disguised:
we stare at live animals until they are dead.

After the 1904 World’s Fair
a pygmy named Ota Benga
lived in the Monkey House.
They threw him out and
made him live a normal
life of work and money.
He shot himself in the heart instead.

 

 

Doug Draime
Note During A Poetry Reading From The Elite

It’s an
abomination
to weave lies
into poems,
poems into
lies: frenzied
dreams of
mimeographed
stardom
Listening
I hear only
the gobbledygook
of an idiot
and agreement
from a
room full of sad
and desperate
egos

 

 

My Time in the Bins
Excerpt from
The Autobiography of Edie Sedgwick
As Told to
Greg Oguss

“What time is it, Jane?”
“You’re too much, Edith. It’s exactly five minutes later than you when you last asked me. Now go to sleep.” Pause. “Please.”
I didn’t know what to say to that. Because I couldn’t sleep in a place like that. I never could.
I was staring up at the ceiling of the tiny room in Silver Hill I shared with this fat nymphomaniac from Long Island, Janey Crown. Janey was nice enough, I suppose. All the girls at Silver Hill were. Except the ones who were like totally cuckoo. Silver Hill was the funny farm in Connecticut my parents had sent me to. Fuzzy, my father-the-artiste, had tricked me into going there at the ripe old age of 18.
It was August 1963 and I was 20. I’d survived one abortion. Which was unpleasant. Though I’d enjoyed the sex part. But that’s another little chapter from the many lives of Mizz Sedgwick.
“I’m sorry, Janey. I flushed the sleeping meds again. I’m like…not into that,” I told her. I rolled over and shut my eyes and thought about the planets and the stars and the galaxy. Not in a “look at the planets and the stars, oh my, aren’t they pretty!” kind of way. But in a “What’s my place in this whole mixed-up crazy universe?” kind of way. Which was very school girl-ish and so veeery 50s, I suppose. But it was what I did mostly to get through all that time I spent in the bins and it was mostly what I would do in Cambridge with Chuckles and Donald when I wasn’t out dancing all night at the Casablanca or dining with Bartle Bull and his clubby friends.
I closed my eyes. Eventually, I forced myself into a kind of waking dream. I was 11 years old and Thurston, one of my father’s ranch hands, was helping me put my horse in the stable. It was almost Dusk and big purple storm clouds were hovering above the hills. It was one of those very Wuthering Heights kind of evenings, which always stirred something in me.
“Well, Edith, looks like rain, ‘eh?” Thurston said, blocking my way out of the barn once we had Jumper back in his stall. Thurston had a dark complexion with one of those mustaches straight out of a Valentino picture. He was too much really. He’d been staring at me with one thing on his mind since I was nine years old. I was the second youngest of eight brothers and sisters. All my brothers, the ranch hands, the butler, the gardener, my father, they’d all been looking at me that way since then. Well, all of them but my brother Minty. He was gay he just didn’t know it then. They said it was suicide, but they killed him. That was 1964. They told him they’d never let him out unless he reformed so he hung himself. But Fuzzy or Mummy might as well have put a gun to his head and pulled the trigger themselves really.
“Sure does, Mister Thurston,” I chirped, staring up at him looming over me. He was two feet taller than me and smelled totally foul, let me tell you. The sky suddenly opened up, pelting the fields of the Corral de Quati with raindrops the size of golf balls.
“Oh, dang it,” I cursed, because I was only wearing my little culotte-type shorts and a t-shirt, which would be soaked by the time I made it back to the house. Which meant I’d be cursed out by Mummy for ruining my clothes and for my tom boy-ish ways and blah diddy blah.
Taking advantage of the situation, Thurston moved closer and things sped up quickly but that’s the story of my life ha-ha.
Putting a hand on my shoulder, he suggested, “Better wait out the rain, Edith.”
Before I could think up a reason why I shouldn’t, I was letting him lead me to his quarters in the back of the barn where we sat on his bed and shared a bottle of something I never learned the name of but which gave me a queer sensation I liked well enough. Then he was petting my knees and then my thighs and asking, “Do ya like me, Edith?”
“Sure, Mr. Thurston,” I told him, light-headed from the wine. Which was homemade and fairly devastating, I’m sure.
“That’s good,” he replied, breathing heavy, laying a hand on the inside of my thigh. With the other he unzipped his jeans. Warning lights probably should’ve been going off but I suppose I was born defective or something cos I’m a girl who’ll try anything twice. Gobble gobble gobble.
His thing was thick and vein-y and angry-looking. I was too scared to touch it, but stared at it wide-eyed, which really got him off. He started rubbing it and staring into my eyes, complimenting them maybe. But I forget what he said exactly.
Pretty soon, he started rubbing faster and then he shot his stuff all over my stomach and my shorts and that was pretty much it. My initiation into the mysteries of S-E-X!

For a few years there, that was everything I knew about fucking. Which is so veery 50’s, I know.

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