ode to that whore, amsterdam

amsterdam, you are a cruel cunt of a mistress with your red lights and promises of sin
perusing my paris papers i see that i was lamenting my good fortune
and wishing to be down and out
now it’s projection manifestation
400 kilometers north as i sound like henry
happy-go-lucky and hungry
sex-crazed soliloquies on a stage meant for sermons
amsterdam, you conniving kankerwhore
your disease is doling out fair-weather friendships and
counterfeit culture
fetishizing artistic starvation as you order me to get down on my knees
for the wasted, window-shopping tourists
your heart is as cold as your winters but
you cannot bullshit a bullshitter and
i never go down without a fight
amsterdam, you salacious slut
we are coming on another christmas
another hobo biertje
another sleepless night wrapped like a gift in my lover’s arms
i’m not asking
i’m demanding
that this year you stop lifting up your skirts to piss on the poor and pitiful
who are working with the scraps from your table and
turning them into feasts
be a bitch in the bedroom but
a lady on the street
and let your sons and daughters thrive instead of survive
let us have a future instead of just tonight

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i stand

i have a great plains laugh

it floats across the prairie and collides with the rockies

who then echo it to me but it sounds different

it says: remember where you were born

i was the desert child, the sagebrush serenader, the coyote caller

rendezvous with the cheyenne

and the other little girls put ribbons in your hair

i tattooed a dreamcatcher on my arm

the feathers pointing in each direction

so that i can always find my way home

to the place where my father stood and said,

today is a good day to die

i knew sitting bull before sitting pretty

and images of bareback warriors protecting the tribe

lulled me to sleep in the thud of the wild mustangs hooves

i have crossed deserts, meadows, mountains, and oceans

to get away from my white (wo)man’s burden

drowning my trail of tears in firewater

but there you stand

speaking for the mother whose voice we can no longer hear

once again saying,

this is not yours

she is not ours

encore

i heard that tune

again

you told me as we sat

in a borrowed room

on borrowed time

again

as the words coincided

stolid synchronicity

not to take it to heart

an oeuvre superior

by time or toil

i’m too exhausted to explain

i hope you come

again

i hope you come

attic events

i was impaled on the iron rod fence of your anger

while your best friend tried to drown me

in a bathtub filled with your tears

cold, hard steel accessorize my wrists

marks from the backseat and a broken bottle

i reek of an old .38

the one from your mother’s purse

while the whole time they were downstairs

watching black and white television

tattoo #6

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throughout the drive from jersey i heard one more time over and over and we timidly changed out of tie dye after entering easy rider country as i recounted the hippie myth of the koa murders the things that happened later in waco are fuzzy in my manic depressive mind lithium or xanax or effexor clouds what little memory survived of being 19?20? in texas with a giggling fairy mother who i once shared a tree with there was a mega wal-mart and a children’s soccer game a dog with diarrhea and a recreation of a nightmare from my youth and on a hot night she quickly sketched an infinity symbol that the lazy inker haphazardly slapped on the both of us

later i can’t remember when i deigned to have it covered in philly by professor ouch at philadelphia eddie’s it was a gift from my parents when anything else would be sold for rent or oxys and i don’t remember why i chose to cover it why i would hide a friendship that has lasted over a decade my solipsistic nature erasing histories of infinite love with drug-fueled narcissism my laughing buddha sister is about to be a mother again in cali and i am childless in amsterdam it’s hidden sammy-o but my everlasting connection is just there under the surface of the misshapen lotus a reminder that i have a friend on the opposite side of the world who every once in a while thinks of me