Sunday, May 2, 2010

Poem 30 - a narrative contemplation

I have come to the harsh realization that no matter how bad my poetry is, attempting to write a poem every day is going to make it even worse. Putting a time constraint makes me feel forced to abandon any methods that I may have previously encountered or attempted. Rushing definitely makes quantitative work as opposed to qualitative work, at least for me, at least at this time in my life. Either way, it has been noted, I kept the goal (relatively) and responded to it. And now I know better than to put a timer on my creative work. I'll probably delete most of these poems and I don't want to delete any substantial amount of work in the future, especially if it is for my fiction writing. I hope you may have enjoyed some of them. I think there were two that I am proud of. Which did you like? And I'll not send it immediately to the trash.

Poem 29 - the crane

The crane dismisses the tornado
So long has it been
Since before their paths crossed

But the swirling gray beast follows
Leaving class behind at the threshold
Rumbling instead of requesting for a dance

A whiteness spread past its normal span
Bones forced beyond double-joints
And feathers trembling against the beat of wind

Outstretch neck twisting like a ribbon
Wings fluttering like traditional fans
To perform a duet it takes two, justifies the storm

Poem 28 - Mosley

You've probably figured out by now that I didn't finish the thirty poems in time for poetry month, but I'm getting the last few in now. The reason why you would figure it out at this point is because here's one about Mosley in the fight which only happened last night. Break my heart...

Fights are lost for just
But humbled shall be Mosley
With reward in life

Keep your money May-
weather and see not true gold
Swear on then grow old

Poem 27 - Windowsill Items

Items sitting on my windowsill:

A blow-up doll batman with a power punch bracelet that says "BANG!"
A miniature Radio Flyer red wagon
An ostrich size Dinosaur egg wrapped in foil (in the red wagon)
A dog in a sombrero in a hat under clown red cotton balls in a cardboard picture frame
A giant bullet with a French named masked man who specializes in barrel rolling imprinted on it
An adjustable lamp and pair of speakers which are always buzzing

Poem 26 Summer reasoning

The sun has taken custody of my reasoning
I faintly remember the word "work"
but cannot pinpoint the exact definition
I'm sure it must have to do with strawberries
for I am currently eating a bucket full
each one in two bites
and I recall that work is something to do regularly
Snacking on red shapely sweets is also
definitely something to do regularly
And so I shall all day
under the sun under the shade
occasionally beneath a blanket
But was work always this delightful?
I shall not remember for as long as the sun
steals my reasons

Poem 25 tumbling


Tumbling

You tumble down naturally
Like flowers I’ve given you
Not the cut ones from stores
Or wrapped by street vendors
Like flowers I’ve given you
The ones that fall from trees

Taking you to the gardens
With black and white tulips
Cherry blossom trees draw you
A silhouette in a blush
Sanctuary for secrets
I give you flowers

I give you flowers
This way where they keep thriving
I want to give you everything
While compromising nothing
I want to give you everything
Blossoms, bases, roots

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Poem 24 Ode to Martha Jaques and Pink

Ode to Martha's Bakery

Thank you Martha
whoever you are
for I now know
the true meaning
of red velvet

I have an excuse
to throw hazelnut
ice cream on
my chocolate chip cookie
from Jacques Torres

Ode to Jacques Torres

Thank you Jacques
whoever you are
for I now know
the true meaning
of chocolate chips

I have an excuse
to throw painted
truffles on
my frozen yogurt
from Pinkberry

Ode to Pinkberry

Thank you pink berries
wherever you are
for I now know
the true meaning
of fresh toppings

I have an excuse
to throw glistening
fruits on
mochi and cereal crumbs
all reminding me

desserts are healthy
in more way than one

Poem 23 Saturday in Solitude

I am all matching
Blue
Blue
Blue
Blue

The roommates are all out
to catch sunshine
and picnic dates
The boyfriend is across the country

The only being who will glance me
is the sun through my window
two hours ago he winked through
the left side of the crinkled curtains
now he sneaks another peak through the right

Only two options present to me
as I wiggle my toes past breakfast
Carrot cake or rainbow sprinkle batter
Just a bite of both
...another bite of both
okay, both and a glass of milk

I balance a shell on my nose
And kiss it as it steps down
off my lips
I lay still as it rests on my neck
And remain this way for countless hours
Devouring the day in bliss

Poem 22 dead train

In deep night
In deep brooklyn
When no one is around
And the train rolls in the station
It always comes in slow
With shrill screeches of the brakes
One never sees the train's driver
As the train comes toward you on the platform

Green and brown grime cake every step
Sewer water drips along the walls
Rats scatter beneath the tracks
And just before the first car comes
To where I stand
For a moment I'm always sure
That the subway will be filled
With the dead

Train cars and train cars full
of unattached arms
bodies still wriggling
heads rolling on the plastic seats
legs being slammed into poles
open eyes
eyes still blinking
searching for the last of me
the dead all turn to face
me and then they hold very still
waiting for the doors to slide open
watching me whether I'll run

I don't run
because I know it is pointless
the cars have come to a halt
the doors have opened
and I walk in willingly

Friday, April 30, 2010

Poem 21 - Bike Wars part 3

Before Benoit Returned to France

Your bare feet this night have seen roof tiles
A cereal box covers your head
Your blood is ninety-eight percent whiskey
You ride your bike like the living dead

You pedal blindly on into a policeman
With Breathalyzer in mouth, you pee on his shoe
He's yelling but you don't hear it through your
Native tongue mutter of f*** you

He gives you a BUI and handcuffs
He holds you in a cell for the whole night
Then next morning urges you out without charges
To ensure that you catch your flight

Poem 20 - Bike Wars part 2

My sweetie and I keep bicycles to ensure a summer rich
We rode out for tea and cakes
But alas she had no brakes
And the passage of our love came to close in a ditch.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Poem 19 - What Sex Does with its Time Off…

What Sex Does with its Time Off…

Prepare

Being recently released into the world, I realize that I need to budget in order to afford the new york lifestyle, even if that lifestyle involves a crowded apartment with slightly-off-squash-colored walls and nine flights of unavoidable stars. Factored into the finances is a trip to Costco ever few months for a jumbo pack of toilet paper. I purchase the twenty-four pack and walk it twelve blocks on Broadway back to the subway. I understand cars more as obstacles than vehicles in this costly city. I take the N train towards Astoria-Ditmars with the purchase hugged between my knees. And people are staring. Why doesn’t Costco make Costco-sized grocery bags? I’m embarrassed that other people can see how much I go to the bathroom. I’m embarrassed that I like Charmin Ultra-Soft and their cute cuddly bear trademark! I’m embarrassed until I spot a girl at the other end of the train car balancing two boxes of Costco packed Trojans.

Tease

I’ve seen many Metro poles danced upon. After high-schoolers are dismissed at the three o’clock bell they make their way to the 7 train at Queensboro Plaza. The girls with black Jordans, faded skinny jeans, risqué spaghetti straps have the train held by their classmates when they hear “Stand clear of the closing doors!” They giggle as they sneak past the sliding doors. And the group stamp their feet and clap along with their chortles as the first ninth grader takes hold of the pole and swings herself around it. With a whistle another takes the tall cold cylinder in her hand and wraps her leg tightly around it. She throws her head back. Boys don’t quite play the same. Between the hours of one and four am I’ve seen them swing by the poles on the ceiling. I’ve seen the drunkards use them to compare their machismo. Holding themselves up on them horizontally or propelling themselves across the car. And even in broad daylight of the morning, there is the occasional couple, stealing a pole all to themselves despite the need of stability by other passengers. He wears a trench coat and she a bright pink dress with a black sheer to match her thick eyeliner and ebony slicked nail polish. They hug one another with the pole between them. His lips kiss her lips, and the pole brushes its chilly lips against both their cheeks. They’re not going anywhere.

Give in
(as much as society will allow without being arrested)

I’m standing at the JMZ station just at the end of Puerto Rico Street. Pacing up and down the platform on a September afternoon. Two Hispanic kids come up the stairs on the opposite platform, both with jelled black hair. One is spikey the other is curly with perfectly straightened bangs. They both wear backpacks without books, but he takes hers off and places it at her feet. So that when he wraps his arms around her and pulls her in, he can feel her hamstrings against his quadriceps, her back against his chest, her butt cheeks against his hips. She pulls out her midday snack, McNuggets and starts plucking the up and feeding, hardly admitting interest to the boy. She pops one of the fried birdies into his mouth and he puts his hands on her hips and grinds himself against her in excitement. She does not react, as if this is norm. As if to hump is the mating call and snacking on fast food is how to play hard to get. She continues feeding on nugget after nugget and he pops himself against her backside, thrusting futilely until the train pulls in.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Poem 18 - Balloon Stomach

There is a balloon in my stomach
Air keeps getting pushed into it
I keep expanding

My mom could not afford helium on birthdays
So she would duct tape balloons to the ceiling
At sundown we’d pull the strings
And stretched cake and handle prints would burst
Into little scraps over the gray carpet

The balloon in my stomach does not lift me off ground
And I wonder whether I’ll ever dangle
If I did who will pull me down
Who would pick me up?

Poem 17 - Newton routin translation

Translation of previous poem

Falling
a dog says hello
gardening and digging for yogurt secretly
potato farts
rocking out classically
unwanted attention
narcoleptic skydiver
that squirrel is packing
grandpa rides again
owl pride

Poem 16 - Newton routin

This one is a collaboration I did with Kenny.

Newton routin'
Snoot-in boot-in
Fruitin' rootin
Gluten tootin'
Flute'n lutein'
Brute-in' suitin'
Mootin' chutein'
Cute'n shootin'
Coot'n scootin'
Hootin' wootin'

Poem 15 - zombie zebras

The further into this poetry month that I get the more ridiculous my poetry has become. I apologize. I am embarrassed. But I did promise that I'd write the poems each day. I can't always be creative! More than anything I think poetry month just gives you an idea of what I think about regularly...which might have been better left alone off the paper! Oh well...it's too late now...


Zombie Zebras
(yes I only decided to write this poem because I liked the alliteration of the title)

Zombie zebras
can run!
and yet the still
hit trees
at full speed
cheetahs know no better
so they still feed
the stripes and spots
pulse together
the way their hearts
used to beat
and spread red
across the earth tones
of this abandoned safari

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Poem 14

i had a poem about presents here, but i took it down so i wouldn't get in trouble...

Poem 13 - My Student's Secrets

My Students' Secrets

1. On Monday I'm missing class because I'm going to sell flowers with my mom. But don't tell the school because my mom says we'll get in trouble.

2. I don't need to know how to read because someday I'll be a lawyer and have lots of money so I won't have to.

3. Wait, don't tell me, I can do this.

4. This is crazy, you crazy.

5. That's not my father. That's my sister's husband. I know. It's gross, isn't it?

6. Yes, three monsters. No, I can't count.

7. Remember I told you about that boy I liked? Well today he came up to me and told me that he liked me. So I punched him!

8. I like Spiderman.

9. I missed class because my mom had her baby. I'm a big sister now!

10. You're wrong.

11. I've never written a letter before.

12. What's email?

13. Do you use acacia for your face. My friends said that it gets rid of pimples.

14. I like Mexican boys.

16. My favorite place to live is New York.

17. My school is haunted. I know because my teacher said so. She said there was a girl that got raped and killed by the janitor in the bathroom.

18. Another kid got stabbed to death today at my school.

Poem 12 - Last Food Names

If everyone' last name was a type of food
would we all eat what food that we are?
would our character be defined by whether
we ate it or not
would we still bother phrasing
you are what you eat
or what it be an over redundance
would people still lack as much
health-consciousness as our obese do now

what if your last name was a delicacy
or contained an ingredient going extinct
would you go poor or strive to be rich
to accommodate the diet of your name
or grow skinny or find yourself
at the end of your family's line

no, no it wouldn't work unless
you've married and hyphenated
your last name for diversity

Poem 11 - orientation

For [as long as] I’ve known about [sexual choice]
People have requested designation to either one
Side or the other or the interest in bisexuality
Under vague responses peers and parents assume
Wearing baggy shorts and winking at women
I’ve been labeled a lesbian
Being found in boys’ beds with scrambled hair
I’ve been claimed straight
When my lips are first searching they don’t wander
Far from necks and chins and cheeks
And when they’ve struck the smack of their sharing
Lips do not indicate the bearing of male or madame
A mouth merely [matches] another’s mouth
With a blindfold one cannot tell the difference
Without external minds implementing [that] forced tag
I’d like to leave genders alone
And let someone else drive my orientation
Into a bed where pillow cases have crossed
And a single blanket is shared
And my orientation does not lump me into a group
But is titled by the name [of my lover]

Monday, April 12, 2010

Poem 10

i promise i wrote a #10 poem, but honestly i can't post it for the respect of the intimacy of my relationship with the bf. i'll just say that it's about raspberries and let you imagine the rest from there.

Poem 9 - abandoned island items

abandoned island items:

late              airy                                    summer
dress    blooming         like pollen
     pods    squeezing     out     like  a  message
crinkle                 in a glass       cola bottle
                 washed in salty bathwater of ocean
umbrellas caught upside down
   popped open together cheating the origami
game: lantern or lampshade


puddles they run through trampolines
and  sometime  t-shirts   and   trousers
only one providing an inevitable
vertical thrust               claiming itself
the ring of merriment       determining
pants and tees as hollow hung     tents
for the ones with pebbled and sanded skin


the forgotten ones’       skin shades vary
                   depending on the angle of the sun
shards cutting the constant           ly changing territories
as clouds they shift from tree to rock to pool
table settings of salty teacups with only lonely sunrises
           drawing out the flavor of any
semblance of tea
time for the chatter         where   stillness    reigns
all tall tales with the same ending
question:           where does the sun keep its shadow


here rocks are more often thrown at planes
in place             of harsh words for the giant
scraps              of faded paper returned to shore
time and time    again broken frequencies scramble
faster: the red    lizards or blue
striped hummingbirds
gone, gone        like the land octopi and coconuts
frightened or cut away at the dawn
of newcomers and
their noisy treasures and

Poem 8 - I apologize...

NaPo-Writer’s-Mo Block

Nothing is coming

(Sorry this poem is deleted because it really was just that bad!)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Poem 7

Bursting

Again
The tree sneezes
-Achoo!-
and orifices we
hardly noticed
shoot out
white blossoms
each a carefully spun
bundle of tissue
or fresh napkin in a twist
in clusters like a clutch
of balloons

Again
It is catching
and the tree next door
can't hold it in
one moment it is bare
branches of bark like fingers
unmarried unpromised
then -Achoo!-
it wears rings of tussled clouds
white handkerchiefs
collapsed kites
and passes on its spring

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Poem 6 - Kirin ichiban

this has been deleted for potential publication purposes

Poem 5 - Pants Eat Pants

Well this one didn't turn out the way that I wanted to, but I'm posting it anyway because this is my April-month goal. I am not doing any major editing until this whole creation period is over probably. So you'll just have to endure the rough versions for now. Sorry!


Pants Eat Pants

One summer I bought the greatest pants
They liked to stretch! They liked to dance!
And I began to wear them every day
Even the my other pairs would say

“Hey what about us? You’ve got to change
Wearing the same thing all the time is strange
Not to mention they make you smell like you’ve not taken bath
And have the aroma of last night’s noodles that fell in your lap

And do we sniff a hint of the dog’s doody you stepped in on the path?
Why the atrocity of the thing just makes us laugh”
But truth was that my clothes could not smell us
I knew since I’d not worn them that they were just jealous

Our laundry day I switched to my soft cotton pajamas
To clean the greatest pants and silence the others’ drama
But before I could pull them out of the machine
Maybe even before the poor pants could be cleaned

My jeans, shorts, and skirts threw down their zippers and snapped open their buttons
And chased the greatest pants for their super power struttin’
They ate those great pants with their hip-hugging rims
And called for a lint war to wash out the final trims

Yes there was a great battle in that water vortex
And now again I change bottoms each day, all right, who’s next?

Sunday, April 4, 2010

the favorite things

Meetings and suits
Missed lunches
Business dinners
All to end in the late
Arrival at the Marriott

Aching legs and back
Even an aching suitcase
And tired eyes of black type
Across the pages cranking
Out sales points
Incline
Decline
Level out

Checked into the room
Slide the card
Go on green
Drop bags
Drop pants
Use the newly rinsed
Bowl and sink
While unbuttoning all else

On edge's bed
I catch glimpse of dresser's
Bottom drawer held open
By a cream color cloth jammed

Left behind:
A tote bag containing
A rainbow striped hair clip
In the shape of a heart
A Cherry Merry Muffin doll
With a strawberry skirt
The faint aroma of pound cake
A pair of white ponies
Stars and clouds painted on rears
A blue tutu
Glitter and goo-goo-eyes glued on
Fit for a four-year old

Folding the goodie bag back in
I sigh for day's end
Wondering whether my work
Can even compare
To the brick wall
Before her lost dreams

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Wind instrument

A woman with keys for a bodice
Her legs are a mirroring metronome
Clicking each time they come back to center
Jutting into the air
The blood music, the soul
Rushes to her head
Where she blows through her lips
In time to the clapping skin
Click click click click

gods of gods

Sitting in a deity's stomach
makes the term larger than life
more sensible

She has swallowed the seeds and soil
from her maker's stomach
to build cities, plains, creatures, terrain

Within each breather lies the potential then
for from the deity's stomach may they steal
the seeds to form hybrids and make new life

And so in the bellies of unpraised men and insects
breed new worlds with new indescribables
Skies with textures like bricks, like cream

Mountains which deflate at the sight of blossoms
Fires that tickle the animals' barbed skin

Therefore exist new rulers which stand
larger than known life forming within digestive tracts
thinking not of the lands they possess

So they may roam freely, chaotically
And obliviously find themselves gods

Friday, April 2, 2010

Panty Pranks

Panty Pranks

in an act of free expression
my defiled garments
were left under the influence
of permanent markers
piled in a hot heap
on the tile-trodden floor
of the Laundromat

here is what those pranksters
wrote on my poor panties:


Pink lace boy shorts:
muffin top + doily
=
sweet spillage


Black & white polka dot bra:
(now with doorknobs)
BASS VOLUME


Floral-patterned granny panties:
insert udder here


White thong:
THE flux capacitor


Tan-colored:
comfy cotton thong
I believe in magic
Make me disappear


Lavender silk thong:
Pusssssy!!!


Baby blue whale briefs:
Rough Seas Ahead


Ribbon-edged sheer:
I’m cheap enough to rip off!


Pin-striped set:
lightning blue thread and bows
Corn or Cob?


Gold ruffles:
Temper Tantrum?
Spank Me!


Cotton rainbow-colored
bikini bottom:
the tunnel to
the land of the unicorns
Beware of Dragons!


Red boyshorts:
Red Rover Red Rover
Send Big Boy on over


Satin triple v string:
Rice Pudding Dispenser


Neon orange and green
heart hiphuggers:
laundry card: $5
bottle of tide: $12.99
new lingerie: $34
your face when you find this: Priceless
ps don’t leave your clothes in the machine
its rude


What those jerks don't realize is that it costs way more than thirty-four bucks to replace an entire set of woman's underwear.

National Poetry Writing Month

April is National Poetry Writing Month and in honor of this I am going to do the poem-a-day challenge. I did it last year and probably only managed to pump out about 15 poems. This year I'm doing it again with a little more ambition! I suppose, the fact that I'm posting April 2nd instead of April 1st for my first entry shows that I'm not too reliable with this one-a-day goal, so I'm going to admit now that it'll be more like an average of one poem a day. It would be more accurate to say that I'll have 30 poems by the end of the month. That is the goal. If you are a fellow poet reading this and want to join in on the quest, let me know! I would love to follow your work as well. And I can also point you to some other great poets that are writing a poem a day as well.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Bike Wars: Part 1

I once hit a girl with a bike
while racing to turn in a report
on seismic wave resistant structures.
Afterthoughts of mass-acceleration
force lingered along
the retrofitting of infill sheer trusses
tuned mass dampers, shock absorbers,
concrete columns all holding my focus.

But the poor dear dragged herself
from side to side swaying through
the bike path like a drunkard.

I had a moment to ponder her particle motion
the complexity of their orbits.
Did she have both flexible and stable features;
would she overcome the state of inertia or just snap?

A blue handlebar flexed in the dip of her back.
The collision set her in a three step stumble.
I observed myself skidding, elbows into the concrete.
My single speed somehow diverged off the path.

She apologized and took full responsibility
too naïve to realize how much I was at fault.
I did not bother to correct her, too distracted
by the numbers behind ungrounded oscillations,
the engineered explanation for a deserved wreck.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Thank the Moon!

Thank the moon!
For being so full
She feeds upon the dark spaces
Of the sky
Off the same
Silver plate month after month
She licks it clean
Just enough for us to see
The glimmer of her saliva
Just little enough for us to make
Out stories from the crumbs
And their shadows
As I sit upon the granite counter
As you lean over the edge of the sink
And we point out each tale with kitchen lights off

Thank the moon!
For being so indecisive
Have we harvested tonight
Shall it be squash soup?
Or has she brought the knife home
And sliced us a smile of white watermelon?
Do we deserve to feast upon a bulbous bun
Or a bowl of black eyed peas?
Has she spoken to the stars?
Are they grating cheese
Or adding infinite shakes of salt?
Please just surprise us
We promise to keep the candles unlit

Thank the moon!
For her consistency
Though her outfit and taste buds vary
From occasion to occasion she arrives always
With the exception of rainy days
So that might we have
Reason to return and gaze fondly
She allows for the guests and feasts and songs
Holding the appetizers out over our noses
It is a game to her but it is our livelihood

Thank the moon!
For being such an artful escapist
What a tease for we’ve seen her work
But not had a taste
Upon her silver plate
You see crispy crustaceans clinging to carnival balloons
Drifting out of reach
I see garlic bread being obliterated by a colony of vampires
We both see the Caesar salad leaves falling away for autumn
This must be how she has mastered managing her appetite
And attending supper with all who request her presence

Thank the moon!
For starving us
Might not we have seen each other
Should she not have kept the fruits to herself
Her light cradles us in the window
Her light ladles into our tempted eyes
And suddenly your hands are not leaning over the sink
And my legs are not dangling over the counter
Somehow the fridge has jolted open in our kitchen
And the new light floods
Except in the place where we’ve caught a crumb
The moon sees its story for her side of the table
She sees a lady and a man reaching for the same jar
How she’s showed them they are so hungry
How they now feel so full!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Tea Party

Previously a poem about two girls having tea had been posted here, but I am submitting it to a magazine, so it is no longer available. I have however left the note about what inspired me to write it. I believe that the title of the poem will actually be "Frightened Away"



-Surprisingly enough, this one was somewhat inspired by my reading T.S. Eliot earlier today. I realize it looks nothing like his work and now all together forget what line of his poetry first motivated me to write this, especially since I've now read his "Triumph of Bullshit" and have a completely different perspective of Eliot's work than the one I had twelve hours ago (I still don't think I have an accurate perspective or if ever I will). Still I hope you have enjoyed my first poem regarding tea, which I've written without ever having tea in a garden party setting yet. I'm sure we'll remedy this soon.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Suey Lee

I always wondered where they all came from
A closet full of stuffed animals
Pandas and polars, black cows and blue pigs
Crinkle skin or fur, button and bead eyes
Enough toys filled grandma's walk-in closet
From the floor stacked up to her cheongsams
Which draped short from the hanger
Given grandmother's size
We received a new plush pet each time we visited
We could visit each time we wished for a new pet

Grandmother never spoke ill of anyone
But my mother shares secret ill stories of times before
Shortly after the arranged marriage, grandpa shipped off
To California, leaving behind his wife with his mother
My great-grand mother, whom I've only seen with white hair
On a gravestone with white characters carved beneath her frail frame
GGma made grandma a slave of tradition, clean cook sew serve
Bow obey and stay and stay
Coin crossed the sea along with letters of dutiful love
But for years my grandparents were separated by stronger duties

Every section of my grandparents' american home
Had replenishing gifts: colorful fabrics that grandma sewed into
Dresses for our aunts' weddings, summer days, school pictures
:candy drawers with tootsies and butterscotches and occasionally
toy sets with scissors, thread and plastic for seamstress pretend
:hybrid roses with ribbons of violet and white stitched into their petals
dandelions, irises, pear and orange trees, which we plucked and returned
to more for the taking each week we came over

After the fire in San Francisco grandpa had enough
To bring the family over one by one
First Grandma and then the others
The first thing that grandma did
when she reached the free states
Was get an American hair cut, a short curly bob
And she wore it as Americans wore independence
With a sworn oath to serve themselves

There was very little that ever struck me as Chinese
about my grandmother besides the smells
of round ball soup, imported wood and antique figurines,
jade medallions and ovals strung and mounted on necklaces and rings
The foreign language was merely stretched vowels she shared with her husband
The untold stories were even purposely left behind
She spent most of her time twiddling her thumbs
As her eight grandchildren ran about her house
Not even ever needing to take the time to revel
Over what she was and what she had become

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Fights over Food

Our most serious fights revolve
Around food. I don’t
Mean we fight in crates of bananas
Or throw punches up with the tangerines
I mean the toughest decisions we make are daily
Ones about whether we’ll have salad or steak
Certain soups or sultry spices and who will dish
Out the time to prepare, pound and puzzle through
Independent and experimental flavors. We’ve never
Made the same thing twice. Never.

You sneak in the fat free cheeses, wheat tortillas, meat
Substitutes to keep my heart rate low and adrenaline
High. I sneak snacks: dollar donation homemade cookies,
Free samples, fast foods, all things unrefined when you aren’t
Around. A round, that’s what I’ll be. My nickname miss
Fatty McFatterson. I’m guilty. But what you don’t see…

You taste the salt and oil on my lips, the remnants of fried
The sugar of sweets, a two dollar cupcake, simple items
That won’t show up on the credit card. But you know
My mouth so well. When I water, when I satisfy, when I am
Satisfied, when my mouth has been yours from moon to moon

Nourishing begins with a handful of seeds, the choice to be planted
And though they’ve been, and are watered and whispered to
To grow, they sprout up in angles of evasiveness, roots that circle
Like belts around the obese, like hollow chambers of instruments with broken
Strings, like the unraveled wrist ties of so many skyward bound balloons

Catch me, catch me, and tie me down with the weeds that grew higher
Than our intended edibles. Force me to feed upon your flowers. Warm
Yams and green beans, dumpling droplets and creamy tortellini
All thrown in and we’ll stew in the kitchen.
Catch me, catch me, and roll me into a cellar to think on it
Until I’ve aged finely, and even then when I duck into the sock drawer
Where I’ve preserved a secret stash, you peel
Onions in front of me so that my tears flow
For reasons easily explained to across alley neighbors, current roommates
Uninvited guests. This is between me and you and the bark
And the crushed peppers. We will step on them together, squeeze out
The seeds and smear them with a wooden spoon. Our appetite will return
To the cutting board when weary of our own habits. Where we will find
An apple dripping from its red skin, painted in a layer of peanut butter
With dark ribbons curls tied down on their sticky backs

Saturday, February 20, 2010

A sketch: Cousin Carla

I spent most of my undergraduate years as a writer attempting to make really deep stories and poetry, to make sure that there were layers to what I had created, to embed meaning in everything I did. I think I mostly always failed. I'm considering to go and study creative writing again in grad school, so until then I think I'm going to give the depth and significance bull a break. That being said I apologize for all of the meaningless shit that I write on this blog over the next few months. And that being said, here's a character sketch inspired by the three animation shorts by Adam Eliot that appear in the Animation Show!


Cousin Carla

I once had a cousin named Carla.
On Sundays Mother would leave me at Carla’s house.
Carla had goldfish but I never was able to count how many.
Because Carla never wanted to watch them swim.

My mother and Carla’s mother bought houses two blocks away from each other.
But it wasn’t until I was eight that Mother took me to Carla’s for the first time.
Because she wanted me to develop my own quirks before meeting her.
Carla was two years older than me at the time.
Now she is two years younger than me.

I saw Carla most Sundays after the first time.
I liked Sundays, not because of Carla.
Because the fridge at home would be full after playing with Carla.
Carla’s fridge was always full on Sundays too.
Carla said this was because she and Aunt Gin would go to the Consumer Carousel.
Early in the morning after visiting the bleeding man on the cross.
And hugging lots of old smelly people.
By Consumer Carousel, Carla meant grocery store.
I think she called it a carousel because it was colorful and made her head spin.

During the winter her mother would give us cups of jell-o
I liked the neon green ones, but Carla always got to pick which we would make.
She would take blue, red, and green and mix them all together.
We often ate brown jell-o, which looked like jiggley dirt.
But it tasted about the same as any of the other flavors.
One day when I came over, Carla told me to go to the bathroom with her.
On the toilet bowl she had put a ring of tinfoil cupcake holders.
In each holder was a different color jell-o.
And in each cupcake ridged jell-o mold was each of her goldfish.
I knew then she had seven goldfish.
I always wondered how she got the jell-o to cool before Aunt Gin found out.

On summer Sundays, Aunt Gin would give us ice cream.
I liked strawberry flavor, but they only bought spumoni flavor.
This was Carla’s favorite, but she called it plain.
I liked to eat spumoni off of a big wooden spoon.
Carla liked to eat it off of her big forehead.
She would put her scoop up there on her crown and let it drip.
She would catch the drops as they fell.
I would make brain freeze jokes every time.
But she never laughed. No one did.

One Monday, Mother took me to Carla’s house but I was not allowed to see her.
Mother did not leave to fill up the fridge like she usually did.
I was not given a treat even though Carla’s fridge was full too.
Mother didn’t take me to Carla’s house after that anymore.
Later, I found a picture of Carla on the internet.
She was lying down in an inflatable kiddie pool full of brown jell-o.
I always wonder how many jell-o packets it took to do this.
But Mother said that I was forbidden to ever bring it up to Aunt Gin.
It’s just not polite.

I am glad that I do not have to eat spumoni ice cream anymore.
Sometimes Aunt Gin comes over and even brings vanilla for me.
But I do miss making jokes about Carla getting a brain feeze.
Sometimes I still make the joke, but there is no one to laugh.
I pretend sometimes that the silence is Carla’s echo traveling from a Consumer Carousel.
Where she sits atop an impaled metal seahorse spinning at just her speed.

Friday, February 12, 2010

The Cuberator

The only shapes I manage in my kitchen couldn't be nicer
Than the three-dimensional squares that pop out of my dicer
Cubed peppers, cubed onions, cubed carrots, tomato
Cubed bamboo shoots, shallots, and bits of taro
Compacted cube raisins, awkwardly chopped walnuts
Cherry pits cubed out centers, last second spice cuts
Don't take my square Sundays out of week's line
But I beg for a shapely out of house dine

Suggested Coffee

Suggested Coffee
-Collaboration piece by Calvillo, Mayrina, and Stuster

Sunlight is only a suggestion
And your fingers at four in the morning
Taste bitter like the end of orange peels
As they slip through my hair
And cut through the dream
That spelt the permanency of this placement

Caffeinated dreams look good at four in the morning.
But come sunset they have the bitter after taste
Of orange peels. The bed is no longer safe.
We will spill into it anyways. And peel
Into sheets and pillow cases.
Spiral sliced rinds will trace other skins.

All at Once

Thick filet mignon
Seared exterior and tender fleshy center
Beamaise sauce dripping down the side
Accompanied by the hint of rosemary
Red Peppers and cherry truss tomatoes

Regret forms where the unlimited
Loaf of garlic bread and Caesar salad fell
My best friend warned
Not to take home leftovers on a first date
"You'll look starved and desperate"
I suppose this means I must force myself
To enjoy this feast in one seating

Thursday, February 11, 2010

La Sirene

La Siréne

The dessert cart floats around tables, and I avert
my eyes knowing that if I see each tart and puff and almond flake before
my mind's made up, I’ll want every item with its corresponding cream
and drizzle! I must
set limits. Hence I decide to refuse any treat that isn't a white powder
topped Swiss Alp emulating champagne truffle.
That in mind I peruse the tiers of temptation,
allow the crème brûlée flambée and raspberry mousse cake escape
their display case to rest upon my plate, and insist to my date
that he share a “portion” of his dish with me. Which dessert was his
to begin with, he’ll never know.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Carrot Sticks

Carrot Sticks

Never the color
associated

press
juice of deflated

sea grains tasting
sun sky combs

brushing through clouds
in lengthy orange cubes

between teeth they
crunch smack snap in

cheek pockets
cozy cots of skin

line up horizontal bunks
on a tray for dipping

morsels or muscles
into muscles or morsels

out of the dark velvet ground
out of the cool dip of soil

out of what has now caved in
now nestled anew

your taproots twitch in slumber after
in a belly bed bruised with pillows

under a sky of intestines
stomachscapes of inflorescent fields

are you red or purple
are your petals budding white

will dreams be crispy
bundles of pollen

we will not know
till the morning up

by inedible yawning
by constant greens