Street Pizza

The new place
where I get dollar pizza
(just a couple blocks
from my old dollar pizza place)
is pretty much the same.
You don’t go in
for a dollar pizza slice
if you’re seeking
one of those life-changing
taste sensations that men write poems about.

The dollar slice at the new place
is primarily identical
to what I’m used to
with the exception
of a particular condiment:
the new place lacks hot sauce.

I hadn’t really thought
about hot sauce on pizza
until I frequented dollar pizza places.
it is hard to live without.
So far, I’ve found a way.
I’ve been all right with the latest slices
at the latest place
but I could use the liquid kick
that Sriracha provides
just a few blocks away.

Maybe I can request they add this
to the flavors available.
Maybe I can carry
some of the hot stuff with me.
Maybe I should go back to the old place.
Maybe I should just shut up
and eat me my damned pizza.

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Your Writing

Your writing could use some work.
I can only understand
about half of the characters you compose
and the others can easily be confused
with one another.
It’s careless, really.
A lack of effort.
I’m sure practice and experience
will make your writing clearer
easier to comprehend
but as it stands
Your writing seems really immature
like you don’t know what you’re doing.

you can fix this.
You can improve,
make your movements more discernible
and everything will become
much easier to take in.
You have the ability
to work it
til your fingers bleed
and you get the right rhythm
and your handwriting becomes something
we are all capable of reading
and enjoying.

Get to work.

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We sat in the park
by the garden
and my special friend nodded
towards a tittering millennial,
previously unnoticed.
“He’s here to photograph a surprise.”
I saw the boy
and asked why she’d said that.

She just shrugged
but the kid
started gesturing to nearby girls
who also had their cameras out
but all kept discrete distance from one another,
some invisible barrier separating them
and the garden.
I began to suspect
that my friend was on to something.

Within a few minutes
a couple slowly ambled into the garden
and by then
any fool could feel the elements
all creeping into one another.
The man led the woman
among the flowers
then bent down
and proffered a box.
The woman gasped,
and their friends popped from hiding
clicking happily away
and then clapped heartily.

“How did you know?”
I asked. She replied,
“You just have to see.”

The garden closed soon after
due to lack of funds.
My special friend probably knows why
but I haven’t seen her
to ask.
She saw something in me
I think
that i could not
and now goes other places
with other people
that I know nothing about.

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Degree of my Predicament

I want your money
but I’m too sly to just tell you so
so I’ve got a sneaky plan
to coerce you
into offering it to me.
You’re never gonna know
about the hit.

I’ll start with a cough
ever so slight,
ever so frequent,
to encourage you to ask me
just what is wrong.
I’ll deny it all, of course,
but soon enough,
you’ll squeeze out of me
the degree of my predicament.

Naturally enough,
you’ll want to help,
but I won’t hear of it.
I am far too proud
to even consider
accepting your charity
especially when I’m sure
I’ll be getting my refund so soon.

But you’ll insist on providing assistance,
simply demanding that I accept your cash,
requiring that I pocket all that you have
with offers of more as necessary.
You will feel great about your largesse, proud of your Christian nature, especially knowing I’ll be able to repay
in just a few days.
The warm feeling of success
will be reward enough
for your generosity.

This is what we call win-win.
This is what I shall do
to get what I want. This
is far better than ever having to ask.

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All Apologies # 0000.0

All right, so this one
is a piece of crap.
It’s ill-planned
and worked on far too hurriedly,
because I wanted to get it done immediately
making quality fly out the window
for some self-imposed deadline
that nobody else cares about
– you know,
as it is with all good art.

This was a rush job
with a weak central concept
and an imbecilic rhyme scheme
while I was learning the language
and high off of bad steak.
It’s a waste of time,
really, and should be
wiped away
rather than shat out
the way too many products get made.

It’s lazy
and lame
and frankly, I’m ashamed
of the very minimal effort
that’s gone into it.
I’m sorry.
Don’t read this.
Don’t listen.

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This Day

This Day
I know that our conversance amounts to but aught
but I’d just like to say that I care a whole lot
and that, if given less than a quarter a chance,
for the price of a song, to your tune I would dance.
If there’s something you want, like an unpicked liver,
just give me the order; I’ll soon deliver
the organ you asked for as quick as your wit
and cut to your gut I would but install it.

For today is your day. Whatever you wish.
If, say, you desire a barrel of fish
delivered from Sweden, in such high demand.
Just say the word, which I’ll then command
to my staff of assistants who do what I bid
and if they have opinions that differ, they’re hid
for they get that on this date you’ll get your way
for until midnight’s strike, what you like’s yours today.

If you just say so, I’ll get you a cat
or a rat or a gnat that wears spats. How ’bout that?
On your birthday, remember, that you should be pleased
so if there’s an opportunity you’ve found unseized
tell me what to do, and I’ll get it done.
It can be little, so long you have fun.
With all that I’ve got, I’m here for you
and anyplace else that you might want me, too.

I’m happy to serve you however I can
and if that makes you think that I am the man
that is working to have all your needs satisfied
or at least that with all of my efforts, I tried
then by all means, assume that’s as hard as I’ll work
to make you happy each day with no shirk
-ing or resting or sleep. For your joy
is all that I want. I’ll be your Joy Boy.

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Leaving the Station

When Paddington was born
immigrant children
in immigrant England
saw him as one of them:
a short brown boy
from deepest Peru
sneaking his way well into the First World?

The story was written by Michael Bond
as a giant “welcome”
to all the kids arriving
from everywhere.
Thirty five million books were sold
– though that’s from all the tales
in the series.
TV shows, movies,
stuffed animals and sex dolls…
Paddington Bear did all right.

He showed that,
however hard it was,
whatever troubles could come
the spirit of Great Britain
could welcome any
who might seek a new home.
Paddington and Bond did that
but Bond is dead
(last month)
and that open generosity
might have beaten him
to the grave.

Rest In Peace, Michael Bond.
Rest In Peace, Paddington.
Rest In Peace, Old England.

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Z to C

I miss Daisy.
She used to be out here
with her clove cigarettes
and her sharp words
and, when she had time,
she’d ask what I’d been up to
even though
she had little reason to care.

She was untenably gorgeous
and smart as her outfits:
long tight skirts
wisps of shirts
and bangles and beads
that must have made it harder to tend bar
but made the process all the more enjoyable
to watch.
I loved the moments I could spend with her
away from the bustling barroom.
They were too few.

She’s not around anymore.
Daisy found better things to do
or richer people to serve
or maybe she got sick
of the puppydog eyes
of so many sad little customers.
Not every perfect flower
wants to be stared at
every fucking day of their lives
so sometimes,
they just get picked.

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Sometimes, Life

Sometimes, you write the poem
and only afterwards
do you realize whom it’s for.
Sometimes, you don’t meet the inspiration
until after you finish the work.

Sometimes, your brain
and heart and soul
and all other artistic aspects
of an individual
work in unison
to create something
that those parts cannot understand
and that very something
is brought into being
by the act of imagining it.
Sometimes, life
imitates art.

Sometimes, you cannot comprehend
just what you’re doing
until later,
when time or distance
or a change of perspective
allows you to see
what it meant at the time
and what it means later.

Sometimes, I write a poem
that describes you to a B,
and then,
some weeks later,
do you introduce yourself to me.
Sometimes, I only notice that poem
more weeks later
and glory in the magic.

Sometimes, serendipity.

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Solecism of Style

Those gigantic sunglasses
do you no favors
hiding such excellent features
that should be presented
far more prominently.
Your phenomenal peepers
could be better displayed
reflecting that blazing sun,
enhancing their natural sparkle.

In those glasses
you look like
I have never seen you:
inferior to others
anything less than exquisite.
It is the first time
you have appeared ordinary.
It is the first time
I believe I have not wanted you.

Disguising your eyes
does all of us
– the entirety of existence –
a great disservice.

Those pursed lips
pretty prominent at this instant
brazenly showing,
for all to see,
your total antipathy…
now that is something
that could use some coverage.

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