That’s Not The Intent

Photo by Elan Mudrow
Photo by Elan Mudrow

We walked the old trail

Full of abandoned orchards

Until we reached the dock.

Smooth and new, sticking out

Into the river

Under an unfriendly sun.

Others, on the dock …fishing with

Umbrellas blocking the seeping heat,

Their poles lying at their feet.

Nothing is caught

That’s not the intent.


I, who have never fished…..are

Frightened by the sound

Of soft-skinned fruit….

Overripe, hitting the ground…..

Hard…..From sundried branches….

As if they are wild…creatures hiding

Among the blackberry thorns.

You, having fished, used to

Drag carp and mudsuckers

Home, abandoning them

With line and hook

Still lodged in their gaping mouth


We kiss together

Under a tree that sheds leaves

Before it should.

You think of autumn….and

When will the fall swoop in

And chill the ground?

I think of the red aphids

Crawling among the dried leaves

Scared one will get caught

Upon the blanket

I’ve brought for us to lay upon


You dip a chip in hummus

And sip the golden wine

Noticing a small dry spot

On the knuckle of your thumb.

I am worried about

The naturalness of my body

Bumps and lumps.

I pick up some the fruit,

That frightened me,

And take it home

You dab your tongue upon your dry skin

In a soothing gesture




There is a letter hiding

Inside this envelope.

Addressed in handwriting

As if etched….on

A print I recognize…..

Familiar marks I wished, at times, I never knew

Other times, I wished I had known better.

So are our lives…..represented

By this letter……

A relationship of a paper receptacle

With its four corners, glued folds

A flap that awaits closure

With many words waiting to be



You have added, perhaps

A final voice inside this letter.

An ending I search for

Mixed with the anxiety for the loss

Of the sound your words make.

And the question is

If I open this letter

Will reading it stir up all those summers

heated in our veins, or

Will its therapy send a cool breeze

To pacify all the seasons we have invested

In? ….Surely, the wind is unpredictable.

If the breeze picks up,

As it has done many times

I run the risk of the letter flying

Out of my hands, the reading left




So, I fear,….. while simultaneously

I am in calm realization, that

I do not believe in the myths of fall

The false solitude of winter

Your letter may mix up the seasons

But, it cannot end them.

I carry your voice deep within

All my writing…..(And yours)

We have written

We will write

I place your letter inside my pocket,


Perspiring Happens!


Funny, how many armpits there are

Floating around.

Most stay in their place.

Every now and then

One intrudes upon your space

Making it difficult to concentrate

Giving you the feeling that you need to escape

Running to where the air is fresher…..


Free from your boss, Old Spice.

Away from that gossipy wench Dove

Avoiding the smut talk of Gillette

Who is just interested in his Speed Stick

While his fat buddy Mitchum chuckles

At every cute deodorant that walks by.

You want to tell Glide

That her body wash isn’t working!

That’s for Sure.

Brut grunts at you for no reason

Must be football season.

Then there’s Ralph Lauren

Who thinks he knows the goddess Hygiene personally

You want to tell him Hygiene doesn’t exist

Just take a look around the office for proof!

Perspiring is not a Secret!

It happens!



But, armpits aren’t always bad

Sometimes during a warm Irish Spring

When people get a little extra sweaty

You find just the Right Guard

And are more than willing to bury

Your nose into your lover’s armpit

And make that Gold Bond


Robert Doisneau Ecole
Robert Doisneau Ecole

When you’re young,

You’re questioned

“What are you going to do with your life?”

When you’re old,

You may still be questioning

 “What am I going to do with my life?”

You are a stretch of



The Last True Enchanter

Henry Harewood Robinson
Henry Harewood Robinson

On nights like these,

I’m a-sounding like the sublime

Notes that fly.

The inner voices to the outer ear

One with all energies around me

Including the audience’s reaction

To my flight, we are together

Inside our own jet stream

Then, silence. The smell

Of abandoned alcohol and

A stale lover’s quarrel swell

I get a free beer and no money

Been doing these spells for decades

That’s a hell of a lot of beer

No money

So now, I gotta steal my licks to eat

From magicians I love

But, as I scrape the pot for burnt offerings

I begin to hate my thievery

It digs a hole in my gut…as I utter

The bluest of tones comprised of lonely flatted fifths

Bent thirds that shiver through my angry spine

Shaping me into a junkie for….

The vibration of my instrument

Soothing me

Into a mellow love caress of all five elements


I find myself wishin’

Ohh, I wish I could hate long enough

To make me not care, but nah

I love like a bitch vampire

My teeth so delicate upon all necks.

I play just the right thing for you,

Yeah you, pretty, pretty babes

I know your kind of sweetness,

when you say from the outside

“From our perspective”

Certainly, I could carve the woodwork

Into beautiful statues

Take the ultimate money toke, inhale the spell

And play the set straight

With my talent of materialization  

tucked under my arm———-

You don’t understand what biting does

‘Cause now, I gotta face that glows

Leaking out soul

Can’t you see it wearing my clothes?


Let me tell you, yes, yes yes

I’m darker than the universe

The visible invisible, which causes

All the lovers to come at me.

Then, when I touch ‘em

I’m the witch, the voodoo

The Brujeria, the divine conjuring

But, my sparks hit ground

By the sweat of the day

Dulled by deluded lovers

With Milky Ways in their thought patterns

Blocking their sight and empathy

And they see too, that I’m frail-like,

Weak, a crybaby, sob story,

With Kansas breath on my lips

A tornado alley, head beaten

Into soft putty. Dried then cracked

Into a dustbowl queen that

Clicks red sparkly shoes, together

Over and over and over

Until I have to sell them

To a resale vintage shop

Full of plastic record players

Cassette tapes, and boxes of unwanted sheet music

Containing images of the tunes I willfully mar


In this shop called “I’ll Get You My Little Pretty”

With tarnished plated flutes

The mandolin no one ever played

And the bent trombone

Resides the history of my history

Just like you,

but not,

you see

You’re playin’—I  play

Therein lies the difference

And off my lovers go

To the dumping ground

While you keep on pretending

Much better than I

Making me want to apologize for being real

‘Cause it’s better to fake magic

than to actually use it

You don’t have to worry

About what to do

with the return deposit


No, no don’t get me wrong

I’ve got lovers

The fallen never let me go

‘Cause I have one hand on the ledge

And it’s a big hand

And if I am planning on getting kissed

I better love the fallen, so….

I pick the big beauties

With baggage that will

Book another plane just to follow

Them to wherever they land.

They don’t seem to care

How I play, Why I play, How I recite recipes

Just as long as I can sleep

Through the day and prey upon the night

A thief of sound

Playing for those who walk

Proud-like, on all twos, daylight trippers….who

Heckle me until I’ve become

Just who they wish I was–mortal

Just who you couldn’t believe I was

Cause, I was never simply a belief


That depth of me you wonder about


I’m a lover’s theme stuck in the throat

Of a time when hands held lyre and flute

Finger bone upon string

Lips upon mouthpiece

Human tones hung upon air

With all its imperfections cast

Single Use Cup


The art that surrounds me are images of images already in place

I am the one who is expected to make a decision

through them, these paintings, figurines….for they are

Copied onto permanent canvas, drawn into form, molded into judgement

Named and named again, endless titles

Serving anger and compassion, attack and defense, pride and prejudice

Stirring the swirling palette of mash ups, in the land of dances

Making me dance, full of fervor, entwined in embedded memories

For my head is a twirling history of black and white atomic bombs

John’s bloody head full of conspiracy theories and Jacqueline’s pink hat

Reagan’s red blushed cheeks and a dusty New York.

This art is frozen into me, stars stuck in my stomach, aching

I vomit up all the dried acrylics produced by the painters.

And there is enough there to make me want to love it all like a pro

For I must believe I am a lover

Even as I dry heave belief in amounts no cloud could contain

Sitting with my head near the toilet

The sound of my empty throat echoes off porcelain

Hoping the sunrise will sober me up

Yet, I will vote for you, my love. Take me.

I drink you while you’re hot, when the paint is still wet in your hands

To soothe my stomach, then toss

The single use cup where your past memories

Never decompose

Modern Relationship


Modern Relationship has been published

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