With Teeth

In the hour between dog and wolf,
the heart stirs to a boil,
pulling on the breath,
chattering teeth.

The waves pass above us,
like the clouds of Alexandria,
seeing who can hold their breath the longest,
seeing who can touch the bottom.

When we die, we will come back as ships,
hulls beaten,
moving eastward,
off the cliff of the earth,
sailing back into the stars.

Rebellion

The exalted.
White foam ribbons of the ocean
reach up to the mouth,
wrapping around the neck,
dragging the body down,
under,
to the bottom,
to lie in wait like a hunter,
hunting her out.

She comes to me like January;
an embrace ending, another beginning –
sun-kissed skin.
So when will this winter end?

The ship coasts above
without her captain
steered by rebellion
all hands dining on the heart & sternum.

She brings me up to the surface,
not for air,
but to tease me,
so I can see myself at the shoreline
screaming for myself,
but I can’t hear myself,
the foam dividing us out.

Act II

A coy motherfucker
stands up in the audience
and wags his finger,
so she hits the panic button
unleashing the dogs
to eat him up.
He tickles and shouts,
but they chew him away,
tearing joints and cartilage.

She continues the performance,
a little startled,
the crowd settles.

For act two,
she saws the memory in half
as if it never happened,
and continues
into the darkness,
where the spotlight can’t catch her.

Alexandria

The body drifted
God knows for how long
And when it bumped against the rocks
It bleed again
The man wakes
And looks over the damage done
The heartbreak
The slight discomfort in the lungs
Where the ribs are held up together
As if they never grew larger with age
Two wounds became a scar
A clever reminder
Like a sound that returns you back to school
Days chasing girls into the bathrooms
And so the man sets his body back into the water
The sea that Alexander made
The same waters they later buried him in
Set it all on fire again
As the body bumps into the rocks.

The Empty Quarter

Black Cadillac,
silver waves,
along the forever sea.

Shift it into neutral,
allow it to slide over,
setting the beast free again.

When you go under,
the children dive down,
to catch you,
but you refuse their fingers.

So you sink,
touching sabertooths,
the dead things,
my first things.

Salt & Sea

Hands to face,
hold the boy,
lest he fall away,
like all my sons have,
they found their escape,
bedrooms to the outside –
the world kills all men,
the world destroys all things.

We dug up bones along the shore,
carrying them in buckets back home,
memories of the sea.
Built a treehouse in the sycamore,
four walls painted blue,
and in winter we stayed close for warmth.

Downstairs the world spins on,
the girls in their dresses,
and I will dance with them,
with a pocket full of the sea,
she whispers, “I will grow up to be an empire,
and I’ll let you conquer me . . . but only if you want to?”