patamystic

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Key West Lyric

K

my head is smoldering
on the hipster beer porch
after this morning’s hot yoga class
in the garden of Gehenna
otherwise known as Key West
aka the laryngoscopical paradise

lacking a sufficient harborside view
I am content admiring
the evaporating condensation
from the glass on my table
well it’s not mine really
I’m just harboring it
in the shape of a long
dong and silver
skinny cock

what more can you say
meaning can I say
than that
then that
and no it’s not
a Rhorshack blot
a Horschak plot
it really is a rooster
I block you not
it must have jumped up
on my table from the sidewalk
the previously clarified table
when I wasn’t drinking thinking

Key West is
a white boy rapper’s
fantasy fest
of tropical spew
brought to me by
Emcee Cous-Cous and His Berry Band
reverb set to eleven
the sons-of-conchs
won’t stop hocking
their empty no trespassing
craft booth Cubacabana ice cream
transgender hot dog
contemporary tattoos
in baked Bahamian accents

if it will make the thumping stop
soothe my bleeding eyes
sink the Santa Cruise Shits
derail that wonk train
I’ll take one of those
fry-grease-paint sunset
fuck you pink tease shirts
you know the ones I mean
the ones with the mermaid
on the back
wide-open parrot legs
pissing in a sidewalk cup

earlier on the beach
not thinking of Neville Shute
I dared myself
to write a sentence or a poem
using the word parallax*
and now I think I’ve done it

* the apparent displacement or the difference in apparent direction of an object as seen from two different points not on a straight line with the object [Webster’s Third New International Dictionary, Unabridged. 2019.. Web. 13 Jun. 2019.]

Excerpt from The Americ Book of Death

E

The body lay on a platform that took up the bulk of the room. She looked Aztec or Incan. Her lower lip was stretched up and over the upper and pinned in place with a twig. Her eyes stitched shut with pink yarn. A new mother lay with her baby beside her. Her being her, the dead, but also her, the mother and her, the baby. Three generations of the inevitable.

The mother writhed and moaned while the baby lay on it’s back wiggling and waving it’s limbs like an insect. The way LSD or CHI pulses in the body making it impossible to relax. I think babies spend a good deal of time trying their bodies on for size. Or trying to break free, I can’t decide.

The mother got up and left the room, leaving the baby who calmed down in her absence.

Our yoga class, left with no room for floor work, lined up against the wall and OMMed but I didn’t know the correct frequency so I stayed silent. A man, of course, it was a man, preached lava and soapstone over the dirge and it became too much for one of the yoginis, Lillith, who threw herself on the floor at my feet.

“Jesus didn’t die for my sins!” Lillith cried as she pulled me down to lay on top of her. Are we mourning the dead or the living? I wondered as I supported myself over Lillith’s body by pushing against the floor on either side of her with my arms and knees. Lillith was having none of it and she pulled me down, heavily between her legs. She needed gravity and the weight of my body to ground her as she writhed. Her hands explored the contours of my blue jean-covered inner thighs, my rump, the lines around my scrotum.

The preacher Man continued to declare and declaim on the topic of rights and responsibilities. The yogis continued to OM. I allowed myself to continue to struggle against Lillith’s efforts to transcend our fleshly bodies.

Death comes to all and it is good. Death is born in our tiny bodies at the moment of release from the womb and it is she who determines when it is time to fight our way out of this earthly realm and back into our pre-birth bodies.

Death is a squirming baby, waiting to make sense of her place in the scheme of of this garden of eating.

Death is an indigenous woman, stuffed and displayed in a museum of culture and anthropology.

Death is a desperate orgasm achieved as a defense against time.

smooth dog fish

s

the sea lion swims
in tiny circles
of apathetic and
unknowable rage
resignation
against the smooth fluorescent
swimming pool blue
concrete
or is it cement
I can never remember
the fish dog flips
flippantly
flipping
whiskers up
huffs it’s baited breath
whisper bark
the breadth of
the twenty-four-seven
lighted aqua chamber
(everybody else has long gone home)
circus rung
prison lung
that’s one smoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooth dog fish

untitled (still the breeze)

u

dry, dry air, moss, lichen, pale green, grey-green, sage, gnarled, twisted branches, dusty, olive leaf, olive berry, olive (the color), aubergine, (purple), sword leaf, star-shaped, shifting, drifting, swaying, trees, branches, leaves,

the deck I’m sitting on, with it’s 6” wide boards is the color of beach sand, the common kind, sand cliché, picaresque (I think), that table and chairs there a crate and barrel picture, stabbing leaves pointing to the sky (beyond the Walker Metal® railing), the sky is sky blue, the sparse, slowly moving white clouds cloud white, cotton white,

brown grass out there, in the view, under the trees, through the trees, deer brown, foal brown, mustard brown, not brown,

hummingbird,

breeze, distant highway sounds (distant highway), bird sounds, chirping sounds, buzzing sounds,

yellow, mustard yellow, mustard yellow (not dijon), hot dog yellow, a falling leaf, an occasional falling leaf, over there, over there, a fence, fence posts, fence wire, over there, lines and angles, green-grey round post lines, evenly cut posts, over there,

seven golden leaves artfully arranged on the deck, all face down, dead leaves, the shadows of (other) leaves on the deck more alive, fluttering, alive, the shadows of the black rails, dark parallel lines, contrasting,

my feet on the table, coffee table, metal table, Walker Metal®, the sofa opposite, the couch opposite, the metal couch sofa, the white upholstery, the black pillow, the black pillow with white lines, black and white shapes, my feet, crossed, my feet crossed, my ankles, my dirty feet, dusty feet, the lines where my sandals were,

distant barking, a caw, flying insects, still the breeze

Invocation to Pork & Beans

I

I call to Carna, Goddess of pork and beans,
Bringer of health and strength to the physical body,
Defender of children and other human beings,
Lord of the Vital organs,
especially, the lungs, intestines and heart.

I call to Carna, also known as Crane, Sacred Witch.
sworn enemy of screech-owls, vampires, rapists and cads.
Protect our bodies from violation,
ravishment and desecration.

I call to Carna, also known as Carradora,
Una Strega Buona,
Free us from guilt, shame and the chains of silence
that we may open our hearts
to the wonder of imagination and creativity,
and to the experience of joy,
which is our birth-right.

on the nature of coincidence

o

on the morning of september 11, 2001 i looked at the clock (digital) on a wall of my kitchen to see the time was 11:11

i then immediately heard behind me the ‘tink tink tink’ sound from my phone indicating a voice message had been received

i did not hear the ring tone of the arriving call because my phone was programmed not to ‘disturb’ me before 11:11

the call came in just enough time before 11:11 that i was not disturbed by it’s commencement

the message left by the caller ended at exactly 11:11 which is why i heard the three tinks

on my 11th birthday i played a game with the neighborhood children in which i was a crazy character named ‘leventy ‘leven

i ran and jumped and fell and ran and jumped and did cartwheels and I feverishly repeated the words, ‘i’m ‘leventy ‘leven! i’m ‘leventy ‘leven’ while the others tried to avoid me

my friend stephen adams died in one of the towers

these events must be related and so they are

The Status of H

T

we walked in the
Moonrise Kingdom
of your car
only to find
a thousand ways
to kneel and kiss

it’s way too brunch word
violent and original
whenever I’m completely awake
working hard to distract me
from working hard
so please fuck off

I’m in a really good place spiritually
the best vibes ever
delicious watermelon,
right meow!
your perfect human bridge
one for the wild
belly shot included

it’s true, I would have gone to prison
feeding my horse
and shining my bayonet
taking one of my most friends
definitely a most yoga teacher
to sit on every new thing

what I always wanted
his awesomer doppelgänger
long dang works for me
maybe it will feel like
Meowzer’s switzerland camel
if it arrived through the window

why is it that
after a lovely
shame on the lawyer
Miss Ma’am and my grandmother
shoot star trails in the sky?

(This poem was constructed with phrases taken from a friend’s Facebook status updates.)

predicted text

p

the fact I can be
to be the first
half of the day before
I get a follow back
on my way home from
work to be the first
half of the year
and the other hand
is the only thing that
would have to go back
and I don’t think that
I have a great way
of life and the other
hand is the only thing
that would have to go
back and the first
half of the year
and the first half
of the first half
was the best of the first
half of the first
place for a few weeks
of a sudden it was
the best of the year
of high quality of life
and I don’t think that
I have a great way
of the first
half of the year
of high quality
of life is the only one
that is a good time
with the same thing
that would have to be
the best thing to say
it was the first
half of the first
half to find
to do it again one year
and the rest
for some of my favorite
part of the year
of high quality
and I don’t know
how much you mean
to be a great day
for the next few
weeks of a sudden
it is the only one
that is a good time
with the same thing
to say it is
this same thing
this same thing

(This poem was constructed using my phone’s predictive text feature. I accepted every suggested word after typing the word, ‘the.’)

Tanka

T

low clouds
over the distant dam
across the lake
a banjo plays
far from home

(published in TSA member anthology, 2016)

on my thigh
another hair
from my beard
winter is early
this year

on the porch swing
after midnight
silent
together
last night

as she practices
her guitar licks
my old man
telling stories
as if they were new

summer afternoon
not watching TV
with curtains closed
chasing the dragon
one last time again

after coughing up
a hair of the dog
I swear
I will quit
quitting drinking

The View (from here)

T

Screaming motorcycles
encircle my house
triggering a fear
of the dangers of
daring to be young
again.

On top of that
all the birds
a round here
are refusing to
co operate.

I remember leaping
over the handle
bars and painting
the street with
several inches of
my fore head skin.
(I did not say
fore skin.)

The She-Male House Finch
inserted it’s face in
the bird feeder (w)hole
where it stuck
to comical effect.

One motor cycle
in particular
sounds like a
dentist’s drill
while the others
drown it out with
their incessant
shift ing.
(I know that that
doesn’t make sense.)

Hop ping limbs
like ladders
the Tom Boy Finch
refuses to look
me in the eye
accusing my
slothful style
of deferring Spring.

All I ever wanted
for christmas was
the pride of a
bloody lip and a
gaping (w)hole that
once up on a time
was my two front
teeth.

A scourge of thirteen
neck and fist tattooed
Alien Starlings
wearing Ray Bans
threatened to take
every thing I own
before turning away
on mass (as) they
changed their
collective mind.

That gear box scar
runs from my old
neighborhood under
Bob’s Big Boy buns
all the way to
my present left hand
thumb which was n’t
protected by my
sixties style
white helmet.

Hammering, jammering,
blinking and blanking,
the god damned!
Chickadee Task Masters
are shoving all my
best ideas in to
someone else’s
chimney.

They aren’t even real–
meaning authentic–
meaning tangible–
meaning dirty–
meaning real–
bikers–
just paunchy dads
drinking Foster’s
“Australian for Beer”
in cans.

I think I’ll stay
in side to-day

unless that
Miniature Hawk
comes back
with my
glasses.

Waiting to be Paid

W

for Robert Earl with love

In the beginning was the word
and the word was Rob’t Earl,
a live wire from the streets,
a direct hit to the heart.

Word be,
he be cool, be cool,
he be hot.

A warrior of the human kind,
he declares his ‘legiance
with a scarf of calico colors
on a Monkish head.

He be cool, be cool.
Word,
he be hot.

The vamp of Hunter St.
is an elegy
spilled in cursive neon blood
on the sidewalks of our minds.

He be cool, be cool,
he be scat,
he be one cool cat.

Those who read him
are sure to note
the blackest of cats
is a panther,
sleek, savage, satin and ready,
looking for prey
but not really wanting an answer.

He be cool, be cool,
he be hot, be hot,
he be gee be,
he be bop.

Pandemonium Hexagram

P

three baby elephants
in a sandy desert pit
— the receptive earth above —
stirring up dust and dirt
a contained mayhem
running nilly willy
trying to escape

unaware of impending
danger from above
— the arousing thunder below —
thirteen toothless
Pteranodon!!!
fly circles over head
with a plan of attack

the image is Pandemonium

untitled (empty)

u

fountain mist
bare feet
cold metal rail

empty sky
empty tree
empty nest

a drifting headless duck

empty words
empty mind
empty heart

Haiku

H

second hand moving the hum of a light bulb

(published in HSA Anthology 2019)

peeking
at presents under the bed—
first regret

sidewalk cafe
windy morning
no news

butterfly
sleeping
on scat

(after Buson)

sunset ridge
dragonflies hover
above the distant city

prayer beads counting birds on a wire

the view
from Mt Baldy
no words

a streetlight turns off cracks in the ceiling

paddling
against the current
carrion smell

far offshore
a fish leaps
no sound

(published in HSA Anthology 2017)

a dark turmoil
around the jetty at night
insomnia

what she said
of god, of love—
a hack saw

these words are all I have are these words

the slow fall of sunlight
down rough hewn siding
blueberry moonshine

the smell of her broken moon

the silence of night
a quiet cacophony
bourbon, rocks

with the sword I thee wed

under the fan
her note flies from my hand
Key West heat

my dead father
every time I cough
every time…

(after Issa)

one dog barking
after another
distant siren

playing clarinet
with her dog
pierced ears

that guy in First Class
leaning right—
recycled air

after Bingo
so much depends
in the laundry basket

footprints in the sand
are washed away by the tide—
summer love

Grace

G

She stands out there for the world to see,
her undecided right arm raised
against the ash grey sheet,
neither beckoning nor saluting,
four stubby half fingers
mocking the wave you might prefer
to have seen.

I can hear the river outside,
over there,
behind that stone wall,
surging, soaring, roaring,
flushing, rock and rolling,
over the steady electric hum
behind me,
the stainless steel elephant
deciding whether to charge or
sink to it’s knees in silent grace.

There is water on the wood,
stain on the concrete
and a shine on the surface of
that tarnished lady
as she finger paints
steely fractal greeting cards
against a  colorless sky.

How did she get that rusty patina
and peel’t skin and those
dark circles ’round her eyes?

How long must she mourn
in that starkly public way,
summoning nothing or
signaling no-one or
high-fiving and diming
anyone who cares
to look?

Fruit Lady

F

In her previous life
she held up the roof
of a high school gymnasium.

She misses the sneaker chirps
and the thap, thap, thap
of bouncing orange balls
less than she enjoys
being upright in the sun
bearing only the weight
of an imaginary fruit bowl
on her upturned head.

With her sculpted
muscular arms,
slender, hip-less torso
and pubescent boy breasts
she looks more like
a young Heracles
than her Brazilian Bombshell
name sake.

Her primitive serpentine shadow
lengthens with the day
as the sun slowly etches
bronze and orange age spots
in streaked lines across
her dark brown metal skin.

Forever frozen in profile
walking a Junkanoo two-step line
she sings through
finger-thick lips
her Caribbean song to the sky.

patamystic poems and writing
Eric Jennings

My name is Eric Jennings and this is one of my poetry and writing blogs. I am an invocateur, an acccidental yogi, and I dabble in patamysticism, which is the spiritual branch of pataphysics. You can read a little more about me here.

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