For Iris

like an unshakeable virus

the golden eyes of osiris

look down upon you

pass though the spaces in between

while the delirium burns scenes

into your retinas

a black blade moves fast in twilight

rips open the canopy of night

stars fall where they lay

see trails of ultraviolet

shine doubt but don’t defile it

might need sight later

so pick up stones, fill your pockets

life will pull tricks on your optics

blurred letters on charts

I Got Up, But Went Back to Bed

I got up, but went back to bed
Cold summer morning, but not as
Cold as the shoulder on the couch
Long shadows, longer rationales
Our truths locked inside hearts and heads

Futures uncertain, the past though
Finally making sense, sure of
Who I am, or rather, what I
Wasn’t.

Her words miss their target, instead
Clattering like arrows off stone
My left hand lighter, minus the
Ounce of white tarnished gold. And so
I got up, but went back to bed

Getting Carded

If you’ve ever read anything of mine, you won’t be surprised to hear that writing isn’t my day job. I’d be more surprised that I have return readers. Anyway, at work we have several reference guides for authenticating ID’s from far and wide. I felt a few of the samples were worth sharing, so without further ado:

 

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“Surprise!” Or maybe the photographer captured the moment she was told her sample name would be Happy H. Zzzviisagedlover.

 

 

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Mr. Clean: A good guy to have on your side in a prison riot. More importantly, what do they mean by “Experimental, Full-privileged?”

 

 

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“Ma’am, I’m going to need you to take off the motorcycle helmet for the – ohh.”

 

 

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Organ donor: No
Chin donor: Hell Yes

 

 

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 Jessica Rabbit? (Young people reading this are all “wtf.”)

 

 

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Tina Yothers?? (Again with an 80’s reference! #WhenHashTagsWerePoundsigns)

Nobody Click On Grandma!

It was a nice day outside so I figured I’d take a stroll through my local internet. I went to a major news website, I won’t say who but they have a 3 lettered name that rhymes with ZNN, and was shocked to find, buried among the legitimate stories, all these absurd and irritating “click-bait” links to sponsored content. The idea is that people are compelled to click on the link simply because it is sensational and outrageous, however dubious the source. Of course some people are going to mistake them for actual news content and that’s a legitimate gripe for those who are concerned for the state of real journalism these days. But I won’t get into that now.

So anyway, sprinkled in and among news items I’m reading these inflammatory article titles, often hinting that you’re doing something wrong or telling some terrible truth about a popular topic. And then I realized – this is just like my thanksgiving.

Sure, there’s some actual content – maybe Cousin Dave got a new job or something – but then there are the click-bait comments courtesy of my mother-in-law. Actually, I’m starting to wonder if she isn’t writing those articles. “You’re paying too much for car insurance!”; “How Old Is Too Old To Have Children!”; or “Here’s Why Hilary Can’t Be Trusted!” Two out of the three are from her, see if you can guess which.

I can’t exactly remember, to be honest. It’s all one big stuffing and gravy drenched blur. Though I’m pretty sure the anti-Puerto Rican ones are purely hers. The real click-bait writers, manipulative little weasels they may be, have some sense of decorum after all.

The Many Moods of My Wife

Mood: The Vent

Signs: constant talking about co-workers you don’t know, may be accompanied by tears or yelling at others not present

Notes: crack a beer and get comfy, nod in agreement frequently, occasionally say “yeah, that sucks” or similar empty platitude

~

Mood: The Ebert

Signs: unabashed critique of how you’re spending your day, what you’re doing wrong, your communication skills, etc.

Notes: she’s probably right

~

Mood: The Koala

Signs: clingy, cuddly, touchy-feely

Notes: tolerable, may lead to sex?

~

Mood: The Monk

Signs: unusually quiet, withdrawn, not talking for once

Notes: caution – a storm may be brewing, often precedes Agitated Bag-lady (see below)

~

Mood: The Agitated Bag-lady

Signs: muttering to self, outbursts of profanity, frantic gesticulating

Notes: RUN AWAY

A Blues Man In Therapy

therapy-Flickr

“Can you remember the first time you felt you were ‘born under a bad sign’, as you put it?”

Ramblin’ Hambone stroked his chin, grizzled and covered with grey stubble, and stared unblinking at the community college certificates on Debbie’s wall. The room was furnished like a living room, with three chairs in the center facing together, and multi-cultural artwork, seemingly picked out without any attempt at cohesion, decorated the walls and bookcases.

“Yuhh….I’ve been down since I began to crawl,” he croaked, and began to turn up the volume knob on the battered Gibson Firebird electric guitar on his knee.

“Mr. Hambone? Maybe no guitar during the sessions, so we concentrate on just talking please?” Debbie patiently asked, her long, straight, salt and pepper hair pulled back. She wore a Sanskrit “Om” pendant around her skinny neck. “Thank you. Now, tell me more about your childhood please.”

“I ain’t nothin’ but a country boy, driftin’ from town to town. Said I ain’t nothin’ but a country boy, driftin’ from town to town, have mercy.”

“Now, do you often repeat yourself? Do you feel that people are not listening to you?” she asked in response.

“Now when I was a young boy, at the age of five. My mother said I was gonna be the greatest man alive. But now I’m a man, way past 21. Want you to believe me baby, I had lots of fun.”

Debbie jotted down a note on the notepad on her knee with a pencil. “The expectations of others can be a trigger for depression, and it’s not uncommon for people to cope by self-medicating with drugs, alcohol, and sexual promiscuity,” she confirmed. “Oh, and please call me Deborah or Debbie. ‘Baby’ is not appropriate for a therapeutic relationship.”

“I got a little red rooster, too lazy to crow for day. Oh, I got a little red rooster too lazy to crow for day. Keep everything in the barnyard upset in every way.”

“Ok, so sometimes you have difficulty getting out of bed? Depression can have a serious impact on our productivity. And do you ever have any feelings of hopelessness?”

“The thrill is gone away. The thrill is gone away for good” Ramblin’ stated bleakly.

“Well you woke up one morning to learn that your girlfriend left you, you have no money or job, and it’s flooding where you live. Those are some major life events,” said Debbie with genuine empathy, nodding her head gently and grimacing at RH. “Why, it’s no wonder you have ‘the blues’!” She added air quotes to that last phrase.

“Next week we can pick up where we left off and maybe go over some coping strategies that don’t involve whiskey, cigarettes, or shooting your woman down? Ooh I almost forgot! There’s the matter of the copay. Who is your insurance provider?”

“Yaw…mmm…lessee what I got down heauh,” muttered Ramblin’ Hambone as he slowly fished through the pockets of his worn-out trousers, finding a flask, a few guitar picks, loose change, and a hound’s tooth in a small flannel bag– apparently a hoodoo talisman – before coming upon a bent plastic card.

He squinted at the card for a moment. “It’s Blues Cross of Alabama.”

“BLUE Cross,” she corrected him, “but that’s fine. I take that.”

Frog the Mountie Punter

I was watching this show about a couple who ran a bail bonds business. They were really smart about it: they dressed like, acted like, and really nailed the personae  of the low-life, tweaker, trash they were trying to apprehend. Then I realized it wasn’t just a clever disguise, it’s how Dog and Beth are all the time.