LOOKING FOR CATFISH [fish] 

rubber moccasins dug firmly
into a bed of old sand
and clam shells honed into
shivs by an unyielding current
habit is bait for the fish
that refuses to be found
in some places, they grow larger than legend,
mauling oxen and fishermen
with the devil's fingertips
poking out of their gums, or
making the shore rumble
by thrashing under a god's thumb
but here? toothless barbeled sharks,
aquatic possums passing by
as I try to harness that which
sees me as just another stone

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UNTITLED (Exceprt from an Old Unfinished Poem) [wisp] 

the young day keeps all promises
you glimpse the face of God in your Spanish omelette
and in the crispy hash brown wisp of hair
tumbling from her forehead like a kitten's toy

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DREAM #9 (INTERLUDE IN YELLOW) [bulky] 

You stand on the gore like a shy child in a school play. Your hair is teased by a cement wind. You feel constricted in the bulk of your layers. Your club-goth shirt has a sash of negative space, and your
cool pants look light a giant mustard stain in the light of day. Your golden kicks are the color of a median line on a lost highway. You don't know if the sedan teetering on the edge of the shoulder is yours or not. It's a clear day and no one else is here.

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SYMPHONY FOR 1,000 RADIOS [radio] 

one thousand underpaid salespeople
twiddling one thousand tuner knobs
over the course of one thousand hours
sculpting the static into a symphony
loud enough to rattle the windows
persistent enough to deter commerce
no one says anything because it all
suspiciously looks like hard work

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WIDTH [grass] 

hey Siri
how thick is
a blade of
grass?

A blade of grass
is about a third of
a millimetre thick,
barely thick enough
to register to the naked
eye, yet containing
enough area to
stack every second
and third guess you've
ever made about
anything, ever, up to
and including this one,
into a sandstone castle
with oblong pearls
left off the production
line in place of windows,
and surrounded by a
moat of dense coral fog

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HARD SKIN [rodent] 

you were small and ornery and
unwilling to leave here without
leaving me a parting gift
the ribbons and bows of a rodent's jaw
a small purple crescent moon on
my thumb's big knuckle as
I was trying to whisk you home but
in my daydreams I understand;
what can you do when a giant
bellows unintelligibly at you,
their crane's claw looming
low like storm clouds in June,
but yell and screech as best
you can with your gummed-up lungs
in the same way you convey
everything else you felt

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FORMULA 1 COMES TO TOWN [fancy] 

I squeeze myself into a tactical moisture-wicking polo emblazoned with the logo of a car company whose wipers are worth a year of my rent. I put on my best, darkest pair of peepin' shades, the ones with the checkerboard on it.

Sun-burnt and jet-lagged I cast myself into an undulating sea of chrome and merch. Everybody's too hot. There's meat everywhere. I get my first erection since the Bush administration. I must share this with everyone. I now know happiness.

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FRESH BAKED GOODS [teeth] 

it's 4am and I'm on the bus again
moulding my back to the blue plastic seat
and picking my teeth with my tongue
dislodging donut crumbs and diet soda,
the kind cut with not enough
carbonated water; the sweetness
is a feature, not a bug,
I promise, I assure you, I swear;
my cheeks hurt from smiling and my
eyes itch from staying awake and
I count puffy-jacketed rabble-rousers
riding BIXIs like sheep and now
in my mind you'll always be tied
to the smell of fresh baked goods

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