"It's about words, and words are all I have…"


scanning obits

obligatory  purgatory

don’t want to miss   anyone


why are so many dying by

their own hands?   why so

many 1950’s birthdates?  (duh)


scanning obits for ourselves

one day last year  october 24th

to be exact   opened the paper


+heart fell flopping  like a tuna

to our townhouse floor  left tracks

of blood+gore


there was my brother!  longhair

flapping  glorydays over  no one

gave a heads up  how about a fucking

heads up people!


how about a guidepost or 2   i mean

what exactly is next  ????  or must we

continue to navigate without lights

these longish corridors?


yesterday the power went out at the

Eaton’s Centre   but the 100 meter

xmas tree did not !


you cannot

extinguish us

like fleas  mister


or maybe you can





Winter  2019

of zebras and men


i think he’s interested in her

a blacksuited shoesalesman

looks undertaker  but dapper

we’ll take him!


but will she?  used to booths at

el morocco 1943  sat with marilyn

regularly  home to  bombed-out



we reproduced the zebra print on a

wingback chair  with a taxidermied

head above  not hers !  but a zebra’s


last night  he knocked  3 am  livecam

recorded the kiss  but something amiss

not the gentleman caller of 46  (charlie

the bastard out of texarkana)


no!  our shoesalesman boldly planted one

alas she hit him with the metal sitz-bath

sitting in the vestibule


as mr. zebra winked  our father’s laugh

a jazzyriff  on the injustice of an early

death   echoed  from a frozen cemetery

up on bathurst street



mother holding court  el morocco  1946

(far right)



Winter 2019

i did it my way


my portuguese housecleaner  shrugs each week

+with eyes existential  she says:  it’s a life   vasco

+unafraid  she stands at the precipice of yet another

expedition into the BIG unclean


hermione lee   virginia wolf’s biographer  makes a

similar observation  how to distill a life?  how to begin?

was virginia  just  an insane incest survivor  who would

suicide at 59?


hermione  an oxford don  +maria   have much in common


pragmatically speaking   a life is a face   virginia’s:  cartoonishly

long    deep hooded eyes   reeking of skinless vulnerability

with loads of black humour about the lips


a face made for walking into   a river


My brother’s face   all square jawed symmetry   darkeyes

steely with war  defends against love  against father’s excision

pre-birth  +without anesthetic   can u see the cancer?    no

but yes  to bravado   yes  to chain-smoking cigarras


and yes  prick him +he bleeds   profusely


square jaw  belies the fester of a wounded dear   it’s a life

no river   no stones in pockets   a different pyre   days of:

bentley  camel-coated   with a small island in the caribbean

named for him    prodigál       these days long over


his sperm donor  riddled with the cancer  too


the streets he walked  now covered in a fine white dust  with blue

bonemeal  gritty on the skin  in the wind  where without caution i

scattered him   previously with stealth+creeping  i visited a mound

at a school


and dug






Fall  2019


i carry a little tooth  in a bag  and it

ain’t cute  only 200 bucks!  said my

dentist as he handed it to me   while

in his mind’s eye  dreams of the good don julio    danced


it is small+jagged  with fauxpinkgums attached

take it on vacation!  said dentist blared  and

through my benzostupor  also prolonged chatter

re: elton john  for 3 hrs   upside down


his hands  with knife poised above me  like

the butcher of bathurst manor   but u know

i shouldn’t complain  one of my bros carried

a bag of a different kind


eviscerated and chemical

he wore black gloves

to his grave



Some people find they can lead an almost normal life during chemotherapy.

Just as long as they remember to wash their hands frequently after taking

their gloves off.   (Canadian Cancer Society, 2019)



FALL 2019’s to gumming the worm..


jesus was a jesus freak


a work in progress?


some people believe  and these

specimens are the ones who have

never had to forgive high crimes +

misdemeanours  yet they rave on


they will tell u forgiveness is linear

it is not  but they also know jesus

better than u do


Carlos (my painter): i only wanted to live until 33  when jesus died

a blank stare

Carlos: jesus!  u know jesus!

yes i have heard of jesus  carlos


forgiveness is a circle  uroboric+snakeswallowed  eating itself +u

anyone who imagines it a slamdunk

has never fallen into someone else’s wound

all festering +quicksand




Fall 2019  .. she who sleeps with snakes..


wildchild of the forest  hunting+being hunted

by the boy who murders his mother  purdonfarm

murderballads  murderous rages  angina festered

festooned with 67 heartstitches


stem to stern  (they’ll carve me from stem to stern)

father lamented  pre  bypass-interruptus   much later

underbelly rages  still very much alive   burst forth in

the daughter of the goal oriented brother (my ass)


insidious+masturbatory   i.e.., jettisoning connections

pouncing with moneyed teeth  as in: i own u bitch

i am the richest one of all   mirror mirror on the wall

how can i look at myself at all?    no longer rocking

in the bosom of abe ape



i did mean that in some vague way we are the same person,

not separate people.  francesleemartymeharmanjason .

Virginia Woolf  The Waves  1931



Fall  2019  ..i seem to have misplaced the m and the y  in my addition to a limb..and a brother..


some people wish i were

a full time man  enough of

this whishywashy girlyman



u can’t have it both ways ape!


this is not a chosenstate  manly

girls  not the chosenpeople  rather

a hybridization   a bastardization


or maybe just intellectual masturbation!




(hey bob   i don’t break   i’m just broken   in)





Fall  2019

August 16/1969  in autograph book from Lee: the greatest little filly of them all..

then sue came along loved me strong




all are fine with me


father a ramblingamblinman  a solitaryman

silence is golden  no fools approaching  other

than the holy fools seeking out his train


so don’t ask me about my day   or tell me to

smile   i don’t perform for the honky amusements

+ i defy u gods   don’t mess with me


i cannot see

the forest for

the trees wokefolks

+ a heaven peopled

with yap

is the styx to me






Fall  2019

heeeere’s marty!

these days i find myself doing my old mother’s

breathing exercises  she does them for anxiety

i do them to stave off madness  but they don’t

seem to be helping


as i parked my car at the grocery store this morn

i heard my brother’s voice say:  heeeere’s  j o h n n y !

with eyes wild+jacknicholson  i begged the pharmacist

for a double dose of numbing cream


my brother wasn’t in the parking lot  he’s in a plastic box

beside my bed  it’s been his home for one year  numbing

cream won’t help him now  but i may mix some with his ashes

the paste will be a goddamn panacea!


put hair on your chest  make you forget that he wore black

rubber gloves after chemotherapy   ditto the 16 yr. old chica

who died in the room next door  on the floor  where your

bladderman bro  rose  like a phoenix  like the prodigal fuckingson

on fire





Fall 2019




where were you for those 2 days bro?  you died

on October 21st  but the certificate of crucifixion

says October 23rd   well don’t worry   the numbers

match   the one on the plastic box   +the one on the

brassy dogtag  shoved into your whiter shade of pale      ashes


being an unholocausted jew  i have never seen ashes

let alone cradled them  +wailed over them  i must say

that i expected them to be grey  cindery+magma  but no

yours are white with bits of blue bonedust


your great hair is in there  your even teeth  your smile?

no  i don’t think they allow smiles in crematoria  you had

the smile of an adolescent boy   impish   charismatic  +

i own u bitch   around the edges


an old world man in the new world   i earned your respect

by dragging you kicking+ seizuring  screaming  away from

yourself     selfhating     famewhoring     fatherless


(..the only one who didn’t know you had a father   was you..)




Fall 2019  ..RIP #15933..


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