TV Screen at the Gas Station

touch the handle,
it’s gritty
clean your hands

push the card in,
pull it out rapidly
like the screen tells me to do

rapidly

a man in a grey Camry
pulls up behind me
I note the license plate number

and repeat it over
and over
and over

pump the gas

I unscrew the cap
and guide in the nozzle
the TV turns on

Are you talking to me?

23 dollars
maybe I can get coffee
from inside where the

cashier is playing music
and it sounds like
it’s Turkish

I could win the lottery
if I bought a scratcher
but the only problem

is I don’t trust men
on the television screens
that try to con me

Ballerina

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I am the ballerina
in the music box
bending and twirling.
when you need me,
twist the spindle.
I’ll dance.
Pretty pink shoes
revolving counter-clockwise,
the same way every day and every night.
When you’re done, close the lid
and I will tuck myself quietly
beneath my own body,
folded up neatly where I belong.
Tucked away in my own
felted cave
alone with the rings, the copper
and silver metals.
I am quiet and undisruptive.
I will keep myself contained.
Hidden I stay
in the little juke,
always tired,
always wearing thin.
Until you lift the lid.
Happy I am, again.

The Mechanic

my feeble Homunculus
red Jew
the top of your hat
is carved out
to fit a small light
I have called you brutal names
my albatross
looking back I see the film
loosely lifted
peering
outwardly your small eyes
in contrast my
hand
raising
to the space between us
as uncertain as dice
you remain
I am not a graduate
nothing on white to
tell that I am licensed
I am a mechanic
like him
rewiring myself, instead
always battling the
electrical currents
always zapping my fingers

Girlfriend Sweater

what it feels like:

thieving, merciless.

black bitch grasping for
both my calves.
stomach bile bubbling in the
cauldron, spitting up vodka
and half-digested pills.

this is the thrill?
I was walking on two feet twelve
hours ago, laughing and absorbing
September sun on my face.
now I am crawling like
a veteran.

this place no longer welcomes me
with open arms
instead
she cracks her jawbone in my eyes.

tottering on a child’s set
of bipolar la-lee-da.

I bet if you were to crack open
my egg-y brain you’d see the
walnut fissures my father gave to me.
folding up like a shoebox

I’m wondering if the man’s hum
is a television commercial or if I’m
just
that
tired.

sequels.

part II.

hey, I’m not dying, okay?
my fucking brain is sizzling
but I still feel like clutching on to you
and kissing you
and loving you.
this part isn’t going to last.
it’s a fucked-up thread
hanging out from my sweater sleeve,
but
I’m not going
to let the whole sweater unravel.
(not this time, I’m done doing that)

this is the sweater you helped me knit.

it gets cold in October.
I won’t
let
it
unravel.

I have to keep you warm, too.
come here.

Trapeze

the Jupiter rings
beneath my eyelids
have hung themselves to spin
on hoops of speed.

it is a ceremony and every
night I wear my sacerdotal nightgown.
I am catching chalky loaves in my mouth,
and I am waiting for a ghost.

a drooling, steel baby, it is I-
coughing up bits of organs,
plushy, fat blue bulbs of Wednesday,
expelling my mother’s Tuesday.

a little bit of heat will do the trick.
a stick or two- three pumps
and the blood is baptized,
boiling blessings, blossom-bruises.

I, nestled on my glass trapeze,
am playing movies in my eyes,
licking my fingers and pulling up
pages of a magazine.

you are listening to the priests inside
of my stomach-
do they speak God?
does he speak English back?

out into the air I make words,
sounding out like beaten horses.
I let the floor catch my phrases,
I let the sheets decide to hold my weight.

when I turn
onto my pink heels,
I won’t look back to see the
wine I’ve spilled.

I am the hebrew crown
and they are the sutured tourists.

More on Arlo

LOOK AT THIS FACE! LOOK AT HOW CUTE HE IS!! HELP!

Arlo the service pup IT has been going on some pretty spectacular adventures.

Since having him, my social anxiety has dramatically improved. I was getting severe panic attacks before leaving the house to go pretty much anywhere- especially new places. But now, I hardly experience them. We even made some new friends at the dog park! There are regulars at the park by my house and they are very friendly and have wonderful dogs. Arlo’s best friend is a Husky Malamute named Spock. Spock’s human also suffers from depression and Spock has helped him get out of the house and make friends, too!

Arlo loves being out and about, running errands with me. He politely tucks himself away at restaurants and is the best companion.

I’ve noticed that I feel more responsible and more apt to handle things that come my way. I don’t feel as paranoid anymore since I rely on Arlo to be attentive to my surroundings. I feel safe and I finally feel like I can relax. He distracts me during anxiety attacks and provides tons of love with I’m feeling low.

My girlfriend has been amazing and SO supportive. Arlo loves her! She’s a great trainer, too. I plan on having him task trained soon, to meet more specific needs.

It’s been great with him so far. I seriously love this dog.

 


  

  

Thick and Happy

I peel the perfume sampler from the magazine.
it’s a name I’ve never heard of,
another Italian who-ever-the-fuck creating
scents to attract the opposite sex.
scents like “Midnight Princess” and
“Dynamite.”
the girl on the cover looks like
some chick I went to college with-
all thick and happy looking.
I think her name was Lauren?
what was my name?
back then I used to paint
and I’d pass in my assignments with
hidden cocks etched into landscapes.
I’m sitting here on the bathroom floor
identifying women’s shoes as they
walk in and out.
Pseudo-Lauren smiles back at me
in her bright Chanel lipstick.
this is where I am.
Pseudo-Lauren gets a salty-teared
facial, dripping down her glossy dress.
this is where I am-
rubbing Italian sampler perfume
on my wrists
so I can pretend that I’m just
as valuable as the thick and happy model.

Withdrawal

convulsing and eyes
peeling back on their own.
lips parting exposing white houses
biting at themselves, jawbreakers.
glasses of blood and spit evacuating from the
throat. noises like an angry frog
bubbling from the bell-tower.
one bottle too many.
three pills too many.
sizzling sockets
fevers breaking pencils,
breaking bones and clipboards.
blue tethers tying wrists down-
a preacher exorcising Lucifer from
an atheist schoolgirl.
there are pockets of sick skin exploding
and cries that don’t bellow from infants.
halos are tipping off from the heads
of angels, tumbling like dimes on to
the silver trays.

Ricky Prepped the Needle

Fuck, tiled truck stop, ten-mile eyes
Electric trains push through veins heaping metal
Neon bulbs and dimming, dimming out
Tourniquets in bouquets, syringes from mom
Acid-brain, corroding foil and zip-zap bolts
Never say never here you are, kid
Yelling in foreign baby gurgles and weepy gasps
Lie down and let the ceiling melt on your tongue