5 am and I’m crying when I wake. Metaphor’s too gentle For what I want to say. There’s simplicity in the simile Like cracks in glass. I’ve got nothing left to offer Save the truth and my past. Like drums that beat and sirens blare, Like ripping nails, falling hair. Starving and forcing my bodyContinue reading “Lies”

The 30 Year Locust

I. Relapse Winter now. Cicada nymphs sleep In little crypts behind my house. Given the choice to rise or to die, I’d stay in my bed and turn off the lights. II. Recovery Raise yourself from the ground, little one. Break free from your rigid shell, Climb the tallest whitest oak And scream. III. RespiteContinue reading “The 30 Year Locust”


For thirty years I rode this ship, retching off the side. Finally got my sea legs, now I look ahead and find Air so rich; that water, blue… The sun looks proud of me, and I may yet impress the moon. Now the children call me captain. So, I teach them what I can. KeepContinue reading “Seaworthy”


A bundle of barbed wire abandoned in the middle of I-40 Captures the rare eloquence of my hometown. Where the greatest minds of nuclear science gather Alongside passels and rabbit herds. See that hawk there. The headless squirrel in its beak Reminds you not to leave the dog outside too long. In the herbarium theyContinue reading “Knoxville”

Beach Wedding

In my dream, You told me she and what’s-his-name Were seen together at the Lamon’s in Turkey Creek. Incredible, how hurt radiates like ripples on the water And grief lands heavy with a splash.

Sparks Above the District

Cigarette ends omit an amberesque glow Barely bright enough to illuminate The white trash vaudevillians carrying on in the dark. Whisky tinted eyes blur her rosé hair Into a firecracker tail streaking down 2nd Ave. Our superficial sojourn becomes legend in one runny mascara blink. On a hill overlooking the Cumberland, We throw up ourContinue reading “Sparks Above the District”

This Website is a Crime Scene

This first thing you notice when you enter Is the biting pickle-stench of formalin. Next your eyes process the skinned body on the wall. Third is the murmuring ambience of cold forensics while you work. Finally, your hands grip the smooth dossier. You are reading it aloud: At 6 p.m. the victim was discovered byContinue reading “This Website is a Crime Scene”

Humanus ex Machina

My Byronic hero was a bionic man. His steam powered heart, clad in adamantine defense, Repelled every minor assault like nuclear Armageddon. His iron calves flexed hard, propelling him in endless loops Through a roundabout of ambivalence, Crashing into stone walls that fell prostrate at his feet. Each evening I’d rest against him, Hear hisContinue reading “Humanus ex Machina”