I refuse to feel guilty
for what was done.
Mistakes were made,
but they were made
for righteous reasons.

The money I took
was just money you owed me.
I’d have already been paid
if the world was but just.
You can insist
that I lacked your permission
or call me immoral
if you feel you must

but I did what I had to.
You left the cash there
in your pocket
right in front of me
spotlit by streetlight
when you should have
already been gone from the hotel room
out into the night.
Still you remained

unconsciously lying
all spent and wasted
while snoring so loudly
as to wake the dead.
I watched you, steaming
and worried about payment.
Then, I just acted
where opportunity led

and I grabbed the loot.
I’m not sorry.
I needed it, and you
were obviously not providing
your precious dollars
all the care they deserved.
I assure you
I’ll do much better
after I pay my bills.

If you wanted the money
to remain your possession
so it you could squander
on whores and beer, too
you could have decided
to hold it more closely.
You should have done more
to keep it with you.

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Holy shit!
I just realized
that I didn’t think
to hunt down
the post-Easter candy sales.

All those expired eggs
half off, and I missed them
Do I no longer seek out deals?
Have I become health conscious?
Has senility hit?
Is saccharophobia a real thing?
Did I come down with Date Amnesia?

Is that even a thing
and if so,
are there any store owners out there
who have the same?

are my peanut butter eggs at?

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Streets Seen

You don’t deserve Manhattan.
Your attitude and prejudices
simply do not serve the city
and leave you
looking like a parasite.
You think there is nothing here
but instead there is everything.

I just saw a zombie
on the upper west side
walking, wearing a t-shirt reading
"Cleveland ’til I die."

A single stiletto shoe
rests upon the stoop
after last night’s
midnight rent party.

A determined hot office girl
scurrying with cardboard box
on workday midday.
Does she have Lunch Detail
or was she fired?

The Logan Elevators Building
on the Northern tip
is one story tall.

The billboard is blank.
Where I make the turn
to leave the borough,
high above my eyes
lies a great white hope
and possibly
for rent.

All these wonders can be found
with open eyes
and open heart
and sometimes open wallet
in this city of dreams
or you choose
to ignore it all.
I see the choice that you’ve made;
can you?

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I wrote this poem
without my glasses
and I want to say that,
like a blind man,
my other senses compensating
making the composition easier,
but in reality
eerutjomg anpit tje [rp
cess was omcredon;u dofoci;
don’t you think?

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The flowers you sent
have at last stopped withering.
Everything dies.

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That Day

When I woke up
I knew what the day would bring
and had a good sense
as to what the next few years
would be like.
I had reasonable expectations
of what was to come.

By mid-day, little had changed.
I maintained certain beliefs
about the world around me,
local and ethereal.

In the evening
the tenor had shifted
and many of my assumptions
were being blasted into absence.

I went to bed
unsure of how the next day would go
or any of the many others to follow.

I felt tenuous
not tenacious.
I felt disconnected from history
and the future.
I felt like I didn’t know at all
what to expect,
what was to come
and maybe
it is in that way
that I began to live more truly.

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Cutting to the Nub

They used to hold me down
to clip my nails
because I was so afraid
that my skin would get cut
in the process.

The terror was real
and beyond my control.
I would shiver
and strike out
against anyone around.
I was strong enough
that it took both my parents
on top of me
to get the job done.
I couldn’t get the thought out of my head
that this metal
so near my body
would be so very dangerous.

When I tried to trim my nails myself
it seemed pretty easy
and natural
and all the anxiety dissipated.
The entire ordeal
lasting years
became next to nothing.

I would like to think
that same logic could work
for us, but
what are the odds?

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Most Fresh

Let me give you some advance warning:
When we give our wedding vows
mine will not be memorized.
I’ll have written them
right before the wedding
so the ideas will be most fresh.

I’m gonna make sure
we get to the cake first.
Before the meal, sure
but maybe before the service.
Why save the best
for last?
You can guarantee, though,
that afterwards
I’ll definitely be shoving
that cream machine
down your mouth
early and often.

I talked to Rocko
and he’s already started work
on his Best Man speech
filled with tales of strippers
and shemales
and misadventures
– assuming we can wait
to get married
until after he gets out.

I was thinking
ours could be a smurf-themed event
with you cosplayed up as Smurfette
and me dressed like Horny Smurf
but that point is negotiable
– maybe.

I’ve put a lot of thought
into this entire affair
and I want everything we do
to speak to us
and our lives
and our love.
I can’t wait
to start our lives together.

Nor, apparently,
could I wait to tell you
all these details of the ceremony
when I haven’t yet proposed.

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MacManus Group Memo – Ten

At last
with a jester dubbed the King of America
the establishment
can begin to reward those corporations
with the foresight
to support this administration.

Legislation can be revised
so that premier organizations
such as ours
will reap the rewards our investments
have earned us.

Laws soon shall be edited
so that forward thinking organizations
such as ours
will lack the ridiculous restrictions
that have hobbled us for years.

The people have spoken.
They have chosen to support
the companies we keep
and so
we shall keep the people in mind
while producing dividends
for our shareholders.

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Easy Street

When you’re driving with this really pretty girl
and your car runs out of gas
but for real, though,
actually runs out of gas
and you’re embarrassed about the cliche
but not actually thinking about making a move
because this girl
is practically too hot to talk to
let alone try to make out with
but it turns out she makes the move
and then another
and another
and by the time Triple A arrives
all the moves have been made
and completed
and you’re in a daze
and she finds out she’s three months late
and you ask to marry her
knowing this girl
is way out of your pay grade
but she says yes
because whatever way you hypnotized her
that night in the car
seems to have stuck permanently
and your daughterarrives
and she’s the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen
– more beautiful than her mother even –
and you swear that you could never be happier
than when you’re holding her,
do not try to name her
after where she was conceived
if it was Ninety Third Street.

It will not go over well,
take my advice.

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