Is this


The 30 seconds


Staring into space



Am I dis


Just a bit?

Floating in the tepid void

Of realization

Oscillations slightly

Out of sync

Squeezing out

Words like melon ballers

Dug into gray matter

Where is my

Lotus and locus

To focus my eyes on

To breathe

Like the ancients did

Where did I end

And me begin?

There is rain on the front porch, and oil, the oil patches that we used to say were fireballs.

There is an old dying cat on my lap, who waited for me to come and say goodbye.

The dent in his ribs—a car or a kick?

I am staring inward, I am stoic, I have tears held at bay by the supreme force of will.

He says nothing and lays on my lap.

When I was young I cut his whiskers because I thought they were hair like mine. When I was young I pulled him into the bathtub with me. I was mean without knowing, cruel because I did not understand.

There he lays on my lap. Forgives me.

He died in the garage. After I left.

Am I relatable?

Is my mind jaundiced

By lack of connection?

Lay me under the UV light,

Let me soak in the

Artifice. I am a mewling

Sap, I am rubbing against

Your silky legs, I wrench

Open, twist and thrust,

Taught the old cool air

How to flow.

Thinking. Yes. Like the sculpture man, but I am clothed.

Outside the sunrise throbs in red and orange, a freshly opened wound.

The cold catches my breath and billows it away in light mist. I am alone at the train station.

Behind me a house has put up two hand-painted signs, big black letters on whitewashed wood planks:


They are behind me as I wait for the train.

I don't care much for inspirational quotes and mindless platitudes handed out strangers. But there's something comforting about the lack of effort put in. Rushed, as though desperate to get the message out. Wood and a paintbrush changing lives.

Hey. Quick question. Am I relatable?

If you saw me waiting for the

Train would you think "There's a guy

Who I could get a beer with,"

Or you twirl your hair strands

Around your finger. "There's a guy

I'd like to fuck.” Would you swipe

Right on me? Imagine I told you

A very funny joke. How would

You laugh? Outward, contracting

Stomach muscles? Sharp exhalation

From your nose? Or would you just

Say, “That was funny.”

This hospital room is dimly-lit, warm and inviting. She is on the bed and her boyfriend has the wrinkly little baby all swaddled up.

Amazing how we’re born already with hair, with tiny fingers and tiny feet that grow into big things that require shoes and pedicures.

They insist I hold her. My baby-holding muscles have long atrophied. New mom’s eating a salad, she’s eating pudding. She’s hungry.

The baby is soft and quiet in my arms. Her arms and legs jerk out of the swaddling and she is free for a moment. She does not cry. “She usually cries when she’s not swaddled” they say.

Imagine such a tiny thing becoming such a big thing.

I drive home full of wonder.

Forsooth, relatable must I be,

Comprised of strong connections,

Wispy sinews linking muscle to

Bone, that I may articulate a hand-

wave, a come hither finger, a

Grasping of a spoon. & we all

See the winter chill lay hazy

Along the horizon, we feel the

Grasp of Hades along our necks.

Step out of home cradling a

Mug of hot tea which wafts into

Oblivion. Bunny slippers &

Obscure band names. Threads of

Silk and those ripped in fervor.

We’ve all seen this sunrise before.

She asks to be the little spoon, and there I am, enveloping her like a man-body-suit. My arms around her, my free hand cupping her breast, my forehead nestled into her neck.

She smells like the impervious scent that drapes all mankind. A sweet liqueur, a gentle dalliance, a pungent earth and iron and spice.

I see through twin window panes a sprinkling of snow illuminated by a street lamp. Winter finds us hiding in the bedroom, escaped to precious skin and pliable parts.

And then you think about the future and what there is and where you’ll be. How many internal parts and external parts you’ll be missing. How many lives you’ll see dwindle into nothing. How many memories will be emblazoned upon your lapel.

I squeeze her tit and she gasps and giggles.

Am I relatable?

Sure. Why not.