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Writings on the Shithouse Wall
Good Time Gals Bad Time Boys

Be My Therapist

I want to tell you everything.
I want to be vulnerable ala Brenee Brown
I want to cure my toxic masculinity
By embracing my “feminity”
And exposing trauma so deep you can drown.

After all, you have the degrees
A veritable mistress of butterflied psyches
Schooled in pin boards and dichtomies
joined on the patriarchy.
Motherhood meets mastery and empathy.
Listening without judgement
While leaving me to a jury of my own peers,
Erected egotic edifices eroded by the winds
Blowing through cryptic crossroads
that challenge me to slay my father.

Be my therapist.
I want to tell you everything.
Let me cry into your arms.
And hold me with the strength
that I will never know.

Bowflex

So much depends on a used bowflex,
glazed with fresh tears,
besides the two people fucking.

A Walk through the Garden

You tried to shield us with your aegis
As we meandered the old garden paths.
You allowed only rehearsed exploration
And taught the names our fathers gave the trees.

You covered naked wisdom for our protection
As we passed by the amaranth tints of Sodom’s apple.
We skirted stone pillars choked with oleander
And wove garlands dangling with datura pendants.

You raised your sentinel to block the light.
As we wilted in a penumbra cast in bronze and iron
We fumbled through the maze of thorny hedgerows
And never learned the patterns of snakes.

You fought to preserve our innocence
As we learned lessons through weathered gaps
You cast us out when we learned too much
And found out how little we knew.

Calla

A funeral flower for a wedding
Sat in a vase atop the mantle.
Next to a stone statuette of a Bastet goddess.
A smashed picture frame
had fallen into the pit of the fireplace.
Soot smeared the white of the bride’s emulsified white dress.

Dumbly, I tried to reassemble the frame.
I tried to smooth the shards along their jagged lines.
I tried to fix the insufferable mess it had become.

“Relax.” She said to me.
“It’s just a picture.”
I looked over my shoulder and found myself alone.
The apartment had been stripped of all belongings.
The flower, the statue and the frame had remained untouched.
A sacred shrine of what was that I refused to pack.
Until the last minute.
When the land lord awaited outside for the key.

The statue of the Egyptian cat
had been brought from her childhood.
Tall and black.
It perched on its narrow haunches
And wore a regal collar of hieroglyphics.
I marvelled at why she had left it.
“Relax.” She said to me.
“It’s just something I picked up in a garage sale.”
Again, I was still alone.

The flower still smelled sweet.
It’s stark white flower curled like cupped hands.
And the jutting pistil bristled with golden flecks.
I inhaled deeply.
It smelled of her.
Even through all this,
It had never stopped blooming.
“Relax.” she said.
“It’s just a flower.”

A Poem About Beauty

Here are three most beautiful things I’ve ever heard,
about drinking, whores and excrement:
“Write about something else, for fuck’s sake.”
“You’ll never be anything but above average.”
“I don’t want to be married to Bukowski.”

I’ll take that advice.
I won’t sing about the sluices of my city
clogged with the vomited insights
of self-destructive escapades.
I won’t whisper
about illusory dreams
dissipating from over-flowing ashtrays,
like acrid snakes that bite the eyes of the stubbornly hopeful.

I’ll plagiarize Byron.

I’ll write about a flower.

It’s white.
It’s got a few green leaves.
It reminds me of a perfume
Bought from an Arabian street peddler
on the clean side of Faneuil Hall.
It stinks cheap.