Thursday, June 30, 2005


JohnWayne debarked from the Ocho Bus at the corner of Ashby and St. Mary’s and strutted down Ashby in the afternoon’s blazing heat. Palm trees, sassy in counterpoint to JW’s own strut, offered no shade or any other kind of consolation: just a slow sashay of long-limbed sticky hips.

JohnWayne’s skirt was a light blue denim, cut at the upper thigh, tilted forward to reveal more leg back than front: it seemed a calculated decision by the homespun seamstress who, with enough trips to the mirror, had figured out where superiority lay. Stodgy Ford grille at the headlights, Thunderbird fins sleek and longing at the rear. She longed: she wanted you to long along with. Farm boys would know that hiked up skirt from a pasture’s worth of Angus heifers: nature’s will to telegraph the ready somehow, when love notes were not an option.

Those legs were worth another paragraph of their own: a fetching orange, burnt sienna, tan in a bottle. The bottle had gone all to the legs: JohnWayne’s face and arms did not match, not by color or texture. Dark, yes, but farm rough. Garnet ear pendants no match for the cowpoke face. Yes, fruit juice would flow down those ski-slope legs, but there were too many mudflats and salt licks in the upper reaches – Valencia orange flesh torn between the chewed lips would pool and sputter, Amoreena (the fruit juice flowing slowly slowly slowly down the bronze of your body, Mr. Taupin) fizzle-dried out.

Still, those UT-orange legs owned the street and she knew it. Shuffling down in the street, not the sidewalk, her head a bob of Joe Namath curls, blood red drops at her ears, two inch platform blooms on her wide splay-toed feet. Tink, in her baby blue tee and camouflage cut-offs perched just southside of the bikini wishing line, stood on the porch of her sea-foam house and marveled at such proprietary dominion. She remembered the Mardi Gras Phantom of the Opera down on Burgundy in the New Orleans French Quarter, tuxedo clad, a six foot crystal chandelier soaring atop his head. Phantom owned Burgundy: thus did JohnWayne own – daily, mind, not just for special occasions – the neighborhood of Ashby and Paschal. Daily, too, was Tink’s unabashed fealty.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Quad slumming with the Rat:

Quad's been hoofing, pigged on catered La Fonda, drowned in ancestral queso. The Institute celebrating 22 years of departing Janet. Twenty-two years of anything is suspect, but 22 years of wanton puffery is bureaucratic leprosy. Quad, guacamole-bloated, was a little concerned that the cheesy clock and picture would be all she wrote and therefore confirming just how needless was that waste of years, but needless waste deserves - and thankfully got - better: fine looking wicker on the veranda, now that's what I'm talkin' about.

Pity Quad: the lurking, lately neutered anarchist was trapped at table with two lamenting vets: Jungle Wad and T-Bone, the former an avowed two-termer in the Kingdom of the Dominos, and the latter a venomous hippie-hating car salesman who no doubt filled Wad's stretchers with boys bent on being all they could be buying brodchen on the streets of Frankfurt, never once dreaming that their dreams would flame in the rainforest chessboard anarchy of Ho's making. T-Bone never saw a conflict he couldn't run (marathon run, mind you) from first, selling the chits of all his surrogates down river, those who, if they thought long enough about it, would jive to the somethin' happenin' here as not their sisterbrothers in the streets, but Mr. Ancira with his no dicker shake and bake down at the station. Woo woo, Chattanooga there you are.

T-Bone: "Our job is to kill and get out." (In point of fact, T-Bone's job was to shill and get out.)

Later, Wad to the breathless nervette at table right: "The new soldiers say, 'Give my life for my country.' We old boys said, 'Take a life for my country.'"

You see why Quad needed double-guac to get through the festivities.

In the meantime, Tres Leches has grown desert hot. Last week as the ovens got stoked, Quad quaked: this week his portly round greets the street hail fellow well met, he fairly revels in it, his forehead a tarmac on par with the black tar at his feet.

When not queso-bathing, he's traveling, training cross south Asia with T, who's suddenly sweetened in Burma: pity cries out, a shining black-haired nayad calls to him to leave life and limb for the long sweep of her comb beside the hamlet well, the edge is blithely dulled, cats at bay. Quad can only imagine that something unsaid lurks beneath the procrustean uttered, a lance too close to the heart of the traveling curmudgeon impaled on some lost vision of Upper Burma - Maymyo, Candacraig, Lashio, the Goktiek Gorge.

Quad thinks of St. Anton, the welcome drear of an August winter, world turned upside down, even peas for dinner cannot shroud his splendid gloom. It's been years since Quad has yearned for those tracks, but yearn he does now, chasing T's ass through a madman's chase for Browning luxury in a stand of eucalyptus. He's hocked his pride to enter the poetry sweepstakes, money down on a dark horse to take the rail and fly like a bat out of hell.

He's gearing: PT, Coe, Sinclair, Ackroyd, the aptly named BS Johnson. Pinter in the wings. CM wants to keep him stateside, but even he yearns for Yeats, the Irish Kings, no country for old men.

Can he build fire enough to blaze them? Where? And how far? Florence. Orebro. Sifnos. Malaga. Barcelona. Munich. Yerevan?

Leaving Bangkok for Butterworth: 7 in the morning. Ciao.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

horses dark

pour the fat of sweet love
and pain will know you well
all the hours of nights and windows painted through
all the homes of your imagination
second sands the dunes of other seas.
night breaks open:
desire knows when
desire knows how
the heart’s moon a mask
missing the song of the harbor
seals that bathe the mind’s diagonal reef
angles of fugitive riddance, angels of the orange noun
invisible plants of somber elegance drown the room
i am shaken / withered / in equine bloom
my nouns shun the slopes of grassy intent
i am poverty’s rain in your midst
a revolution of blue flowers, aching tumult
trouble rounds the gerunds of errant ardor
and I am bloomed, all semblance colored by lucid dreams
a miracle of chase, an evolution of dark horses
through the crimes of citrine entanglement I am cut:
lapidary fate: crossed by a bat’s vision of sacrifice:
you wore this crystal morn
you shaped this ashen heart
you crowned this amber vision
at the precipice of love’s embrace
detonated folly most warm
down the wisdom of your azure gate