‘Assemble yourselves, make haste, come together from every side to my victim, which I slay for you, a great victim upon the mountains of Israel: to eat flesh, and drink blood.’
The Not Great Heist of All Hallow’s Eve
The two had a plan, even a sense of irony,
as they wore masks of Shaggy and Freddie
for the cameras. Bumped the bolt. Their heist
was some silverware and costume jewelry
thrown into a pillow case—fairly petty—
and pizza and beer from the fridge. Tomfoolery
to fall asleep, drunk in front of the TV,
to be unmasked like any cartoon poltergeist.
Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski
After years at sea, he adapted a nom
de plume for English language readers,
still recognized as a Polish phenom,
among the very best of modern writers.
Had He Caught Moby Dick
Ahab would have had to buy a pan
to fry up all that leviathan.
The Man Who Swallowed an Ocean
The flesh eaten right off Santiago’s skeleton
became the villager’s favorite feuilleton,
but who knows what monsters from the deep
swam back to reappear in Papa’s sleep.
He is John, man in ragged overcoat
Long to withered knees
Manbeard made of clipped leaves and twigs
Man with face of rough bark
John who walks Saturday-night stupor
Through sibilant rings
Of maple, elm and linden leaves,
Into crackling flower of fire
In peripatetic permutations, cough
Of dry staccato vespers, leaf to stone,
Each skeletal ballet whispers
He who is barrowed by mottled stile,
Stilled and waked in copper kettle,
Kegged and bunged for cooling cellar
In hoarse tones violent riots of autumn
Become seasonal rites trans-
Corporeal, quiet in slow burn
He is John of the demijohn
Bottle god of good folk,
Fanatic familiar of flagon, flask and firkin
His limber limbs are all consumed,
Sap-drunk as wasp and hornet
Dry and empty as cracked bobbin,
His spirit tumbles leaves down empty lanes
And empty well; he is spirit in wind,
He makes spirits from color, heat and motion
He is tall shoots and thick roots,
A shock of fruited stalks between
Breaks from his loamy scalp.
His anatomy taps boot heels,
Claps coarse palms. He, mate of dance,
Husband of hilarity, spouse of song.
Brittle brown leaves, fallen angels
Dancing down cold swift winds
Hymns that scrape, swirl and click
And always he must come along,
Always feed fire’s fermenting flower –
He empties nectar from his eye
He is John, and John must die.
Lois Loses With Long Odds
She began to drum her fingers and furrow
her brow—then laid down a Yarborough.
The San Patricio Rattlesnake Races
The snake able to most quickly slither, wins—
as long as it doesn’t start withershins.
At a Competitive Eating Contest
A dozen hot dogs isn’t just skosh
or a losing total, but très gauche.
I made a drink
and a diverse group of Catholic gentlemen talked a little Plato.
We talked and talked and drank and drank and talked and drank …. until the horse came home.
Industrial Strength Jadra
For access to the Baltic Sea,
Germany had to transfigure
Gdansk into Danzig. Schwer:
Poles inhabit the entire city.
Shifting Borders Among German Speaking Peoples from Archaic Times to the Present
Hops the men grew for beer the men pissed
were reason enough for any irredentist.
The Barbeque Pit’s Sweet, Sweet Style
With awe, she regarded my bib—awe, pity
and even distress at my swelling gibbosity.
Not So Sweet Aftermath
To me, as she licked her thumb,
“It’s hard to disambiguate
between the pig you’ve become
and this damn pig you ate.”
Women think in [Douglas] Sirk’s films. Something which has never struck me with other directors. None of them. Usually women are always reacting, doing what women are supposed to do, but in Sirk they think. It’s something that has to be seen. It’s great to see women think. It gives one hope. Honestly. Rainer Werner Fassbinder.
A nod to Kierkegaard and Walker Percy: existentialist tomfoolery, political satire, literary homage, word mongering, a year-round summer reading club, Dylanesque music bits, apocalyptic marianism, poetry, fiction, meta-porn, a prisoner work-release program.
Cosmos the in Lost
Everything that Rises
Good Country People
By Way of Beauty
Charlotte was Both
I Have to Sit Down
From Empty Hands
All Manner of Thing
Gerasene Writers Conference
The Ironic Catholic
Catholic and Enjoying It
Catholic Radio International
Is My Phylactery Showing?
Babes in Babylon
Fort o' Tude
En pocas palabras
William Wilson, Guitarist Extraordinaire
Signposts in a Strange Land
Mr. Bones' Garden