Loveseats Force The Issue



Loveseats force the issue

Davenport is not an exotic city

They come from Couch!

And if they try to tell you

They’re from Barcalounger

You know they’re full of it

Just tell ‘em,

You know someone from Recliner

Benches are hard on your ass

Do coffee tables really do coffee?


They’re just into spills

What’s the dining room chair

Doing in the kitchen?

Watch out for those sneaky bastards

Sofas are dumbasses, overstuffed

A commode either talks fancy

Or is full of shit

Get rid of footstools! Now!

A chest of drawers

Does not need a bureau

To handle all the dainties

Drapes get way too dark about stuff

Curtains have a brighter attitude

Shelves shove things around

No wonder they get cluttered up

Shoe racks are obsessive

Desks are dirty talkers

Nightstands are liars

They like it in the morning too

Lamps are voyeuristic



The Waterfall (Portrait #6)

Dedicated to the Multnomah. Some still walk where you have tread.
Dedicated to the Multnomah. Some still walk where you have tread.

The train is always heard, cutting through waterfalls and springs. Only by standing close to the noise of water can the sound be heard. How does this waterfall speak?

Each splash that ricochets off a rock looks the same as the one before. Each is an individual word, related to, but not exactly the same word that came before. These words create a mist moistening her face, mingling with sweat. She licks her lips experiencing coolness combined with salt.

A blue sky sticks light into the conversation, peering down through spears of cedar and fir. It’s been blue for so long. She can’t remember the grey. Below her, where the gorge meets the sound of the trains, people laugh in the sun, drink long from large cups, burn with play. They have been playing every day, forever.

Here in the dark, next to the spring, the waterfall speaks to her. This is the place she had started from. This is where it began, before all the playing. The cool and dark always came from the ground, which now speaks the same words it always has, trembling next to her wet face.

Todd Baughman
Todd Baughman






The Collision Of Paragraphs



The heated horizon

Produces an allure.

My eyes follow

its linear line, moving with

the melodic narrative–

There are other voices—here

Where hills make outlines.

Harmony is horizontal–

A dialogic freeway.

It is the rain

That stops streets

And plays with the oil

Leftover from sentences

Blocks and paragraphs

Stories—cities, maps, the membranes

Of the lay out to thought


The horizon burns, it must.

To maintain its fix.

Pierces a way inside

Leaving me to forget

How notes are placed

on top of one another–

They are not static, all is noise

Counterpoint and polyrhythms

Bouncing off other events–

Experience, a lose few chapters

Their print flying off, landing

On edges, never settled

Remaining, vibrating

Rubbing itself in tension

Spewing multiplicity


The horizon ignites

A promise of finality

Of oneness with meaning

A road that flirts with following

Doesn’t know where it leads.

Only a traveller has a map

And it is two-dimensional

Until looked at–

The gaze, full of plurality

Small foot trails

Leading to death, life

Or at least a good mushroom

Growing on the side of hills

That fight the horizon

A creative feat of inclusivity


The horizon’s fever basks me

My voice, forced within a stave

Is seen screaming out of mono

But, all ears have flattened

Flush with their heads

Now, an orange/red sunset

Is only a page in rotation

That comes back

Slightly adjusted

Set to scrape another sky.

I listen for the collision

Of paragraphs falling

And helplessly read horizontally

Which is

The story that includes us all


The Fern (Portrait #5)

By John Everett Millais
By John Everett Millais

This stream is the coldest my hands have ever touched. If there is a bottom to its shallowness, I can’t find it. The water seems so damned clear, too clear. I think I should be able to see, but I can’t. It must be the water’s rush against the rocks that makes it to see even the reflection of the sky.

This stream leads to a river. I can feel it. Its mouth is trapped behind the forest. I swear if I touch that mouth it would sear my hands. But, I don’t know this to be true. It’s good I keep numbed, unable to feel the pebbles disturbed below.

I read the movement of the water. I can understand only so much of it before it gets lost. Perhaps, the writer is confused and has lost the sense of its direction. That’s an easy thing to do with something that is so cold and full of stones.

Sometimes I think I’m asleep. The stream has that affect. But, I know I’m awake. Movement catalogued, as if all is perpetually still and nothing lost track of. The story keeps me sane.

Bits of me join the stream. At times, I think I am part of the stream, both of us searching for the mouth. I never feel like the bits are lost. They are always reading, always reading.

By Harold Gaze
By Harold Gaze





Laminate Is A Pervert



Don’t snuggle with a rug

Unless properly vacuumed

And groomed

Hardwoods are bit ornery

but shine right up

When waxed with love

Hook Shag up with a van

They’re meant for each other

Indoor Outdoor likes it both ways

Tiles are squares, most of the time.

Don’t get suffocated by wall to wall

Make sure there’s a bit

of living room in your relationship

Keep doormats outside

They’re dirty little fuckers

An area rug can get over confident

Always put them in their place

Orientals are self-involved

Carpets are cheap dates

Never roll out the red carpet

When woven to someone else

Hallway rugs suffer

From a variety of lengths

Although they’re great at networking

Underlays should not be frilly

Make sure they remain discreet

Baseboards are untrustworthy

They are either hold onto the wall

Or conveniently side with the floor

Laminate is a pervert

Just ask Stainmaster

Avoid a rug beater at all costs







Washcloths Are Scrubs



A bath towel knows

the raw and rude truth

Which in most cases

Is not a good thing

A paper towel gets wet

Easily. Then it’s all over

In one or two short wipes

A kitchen towel thinks

they’re fancy schmancy

But is just a dishtowel

By any other name

Handkerchiefs are snots

A sanitary towel can seem like

A murderer on a rampage

But, are really innocent

Napkins underneath it all

Beach towels get sand

Stuck up their creases

Tissues expose themselves

Then are found about the house

Involved with a wad

Bar towels smell like barf

Drink incessantly

Dabble with chasers

Rags are always found in

The most awkward circumstances

Hand dryers fake the funk

Washcloths are scrubs






These lines in my Hands,

Some say they can read them.

Stories like hills speak through them

A Dirt Embeds itself in my palms

Deep inside the lines,

I have rinsed with the coldest Water

Over my opened Hand

As more lines appear,

As if they are here to stay


I wonder whether I have

Taken good care of them?

These Hands have been

Given to me that I may hold things,

Touch my lover, hold my children

Feel the coolness of a spring

Roughness of bark as it travels

Down the spine of a tree

These Hands Write words

Feeling them out upon a page

Have made a musical instrument

Soar and its Rhythms vibrate

Then, my Hands can hear

As well as speak


I hear my father’s voice,

From my Hands, sometimes stern

Other times, filled

With an inextinguishable pride

My Hands still hold his messages,

That others can read.

My mother’s love

Can be heard from my Hands

Her grasp strong, unwavering

Which holds my soft Hands high,

above my head, above fear

as my pudgy legs learn

to handle gravity.

A walk others can read


 I walk this city

My Hands feel its scales

Observe it struggling to breath

Through gills in the form of blocks

As it holds children, touches lovers

The coolness of its rain, soothes me

The roughness of its streets

Is fused to my spine

It Writes stories too long to read

Its music is shaped by our Hands


These lines in my Hand

Some say they can read them

Life, heart, head, and fate.

Each a story, Each a desire

Four hills that are dirt, embedded

Inside my palms, explain my reach

They curl up, within, as I grasp

Without——— them,

I could not hold onto anything.









Woolens Are Overprotective



Argyles are in cahoots

With high waters

And can recite, from memory,

Dialogue from Star Trek

Nylons want to make

Believe they are free and easy

But run when the going gets tough

Woolens are overprotective

Leg warmers brag

And want to be looked at

Especially if teamed with cut-offs

Knee-highs play games

But are slipped off easily

No-shows always peek, peep,

and take a gander at bony ankles

Crew socks are players

Dress socks have personality disorders.

They go to church, weddings, funerals

And dinner parties, Otherwise,

They stay at home in the drawer.

Panty hose, Ahh fuck, who named those?

Tights need to keep it together

Stay positive, be sensible, never droop

Or get too down about things

Toe socks get overly attached

Sock puppets are imposters

Never believe them

They are gloves! I swear!

Tubing needs to be outlawed

Fishnets catch more then they can handle

Bobby socks can be found lurking

Around retirement facilities

And should be over the calf by now

Socklets need to grow up and get over it




She Is Not Among The Debris




She forgets the slow current’s nature

The bridge makes memory disappear

Both sides, anchored to one another

By concrete skin, steel bolts, a mirage

Beams and illusion. Hazy covenant

The shores are never separate sides

Only two similarities, held in suspension


The ferry allowed her a connection

Provided time, renewal, ages to swim in

Banks gave up affinity, held unique desire

Now she bites with identical jaws

into wooden docks, slippery,

overgrown with asphalt and oil


She interrupts the bridge at its heart

A way to swim, to enter the slowness

A means to disconnect, severe from sameness

The sky turns the river into blue invitations

It does not lie, but reflects, apart


The river, ashen surface, greyness, an area

There are always crests in the wind

As if the river runs backwards

She must be pulled up by hand


She is not among the debris

Spring runoff has plans of its own

Bunching up, with the bridge


She swims with all her clothes on

Singularities explode into dimensions


Her fall, is a taste of everything remembered




Never Smooch A Brooch



Nancy Cunard
Nancy Cunard

Always walk arm and arm

With a purse. They’re insecure

And get addicted to junk

Don’t listen to babbling bracelets

They get caught up in the apparel

Never hang out with a trashy trinket

Necklaces will fool you

With spoiled-ass sweet talk

Keep them behind buttons

Or they’ll wink at any old dog tag

Don’t let a ring control things

Anklets can be footloose

Make sure they wear bells while jingling

Earrings think they’re trapeze artists

Dangling high, unless their studs

Then one’s fine, two’s ok

Three or more is an orgy

Toe rings stink

Don’t give into those

Snotty little nose rings

Divulge nothing to pinky rings

They’re not mature enough

For indiscriminate indexing

Can you believe the gall of the tiara?

Never let a choker get its hands on you

Bangles are for bums and beehives

Rosaries want to wait until they’re married

Then all hell breaks loose

Never smooch a brooch

Heavy Woman In Costume



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