What happens

(for lex, 1984-2006, fellow volunteer and a sweet courageous bird; a long thin swan, lived long enough to find love. may she rest in peace after her battle)

What happens

between sacrifice and
the clouds open and
I look up
the sky opens up, then
my face is all wet
so keep looking up, up
until there’s nowhere to look to
no one to look at

I hide behind a pillar
or stained glass
until the sky finally

I don’t shake hands until
I'm all dried out.

run over by a train

that's how I feel, after getting some unexpected bad news about work.

this is why people drink.


I groped a snooty calf

(mildly explicit)

I groped a calf and asked it change for the subway. It was like a dream. I had little experience with calves on public transit, but here they were now, barnyard animals on the TTC, and I was put off. The beast had followed me down the steps in through the doors of the first subway car. It was a Sunday afternoon, ie prime milking weather. I was never one to grope a strange animal, but it was Ramadan and I was feeling like a newborn handson agriculturalist. The calf squealed when I lifted his tale. He shot me a toothy grimace and all four stomachs rumbled at once. “Mind your fingers, pleb,” he said to me. Now this was a snooty calf.

I wondered, what made animals talk: was it global warming? Was it the general entropy and decadence of Western civilization? Maybe it was the civil rights movement, but no, that was so cliché. Maybe it was the environmental movement, combined with the resumption of NHL play after a lengthy and purgative lockout. That would make even the tiniest squirrel chatter, snicker or hum a few bars of Chopin (Assuming squirrels were cultivated; but no, they kept eating my garbage).

The calf’s name was Heisman Solway Gluckstein Cowffeirbull. This calf was snooty, and, strangely, he was Yiddish. “Funny you’re not Calfolic,” I joked, but his nonplussed grunting nullified my wordplay. I looked at my wristwatch, it was covered in calf's milk. Then I realized something quite disastrous: male calves don’t have udders. One glance at the grin on Cowffeirbull’s face made me realize I had done him too great a favour. I looked at him in disgust and made a loud puking noise. “I’m getting off here,” was my ejaculation as I made for the subway door. “Me too” said the calf, but I half-expected that retort. I spurted from the car at Dundas West - Cowffeirbull was left to his lethargy, and I left to 'hoof it' two extra stations. Late for my waxing appointment was I, but so what: I had escaped another bovine subway pervert.

["classic tale of alienation - Kafka or KalfKow?"]



Crawling into the bubble of the space shuttle, we cut loose and sailed to Saturn, those rings offering resting space for my chromium-aluminum hull, we exit and look for signs of the solar system’s biggest hurricane, to get our fill of Mother Nature on a whole new planet. When you step on another world, how many of your archetypes/stereotypes/faded-daguerreotypes have to vanish by necessity, and when fish first stepped out of the water to become monkeys how much heartache was there over lost traditions, and so it is with children of immigrants and the generation gap and this brave new world of amnesia compulsory innovation and a sense we are all in such a hurry to catch up to the Joneses on a foreign planet and there are serfs even in the space shuttle but that’s nothing new.

Once set foot on this strange surface, and exploring crevices and ridges that have no name (except what you could spy by telescope) and you get to name everything, what a tremendous privilege and responsibility, like my theory of naming children: give them names that force people to smile when pronounced so all their lives your kids they grow up feeling love. [this may be complete crap]

We continue to bray and mould this cognitive clay, waiting for that full-on explanation and the complete justification, a sweeping conclusive summary that encapsulates the origin and descent of all that vexes intrigues and fascinates. We postpone that reckoning with our grindstone, always subverting and inventing in a fallacy the perpetual motion machine of sound and fury all leading up to an empty cistern on the hottest day in the desert and then you die. This is a backwards pyramid, this is word-processor prestidigitation. No wonder the philosophers get more famous as they get impenetrable I only write down every second thought you know, I have my rhythm to protect and I can’t handle feedback at a realtime rate, so every other thought is random and every other sentence is deliberate for effect. It’s like being lefthanded in cursive script you know what word comes next but always having to push your whole hand through the current word across raw paper - you skip so many words in a hurry as your pen leads your fist through your reasoning as opposed to the hand moving first and the ink flows from the most recent firing of the synapse. [TILT]


Clickety Clack #234

We need to know what goes on in your face, that alacritous distaste for the sensical, your fervent longing for the ecumenical consensus, you want all referees onside, the smooth agreement and dispersed sighs, the slickness of Astroglide on a shaven thigh.

Hi and bye, night close by, lie under the sky and sigh, eat another poisoned apple pie in a basin full of brown suds, this swollen hipster pose sickening my straight arrow friends.

Dreams in fuzzy pink and drink potions from Hawaii and leave the drano under the sink. The big bank is bonzaied by the brinks trucks, the motion detectors are dead and nothing but ghosts move in this evening dusk, the moon was full three days ago and it is still quite constipated. I cue you to swirl like Mary Lou Retton. A cry from the midway barker, this close shave on a Wednesday aka Humpday, midweek for those keen on regularity which of course leads to prosperity at the expense of spontaneity and hilarity. Prone to sincerity and prophetic poses, my stenching stack of roses red lie undelivered one minute after midnight after Valentine’s Day.

No cloak for my back in winter, naked wanderer from the town beyond the frontier, that cesspool of uncertainty worms into your ear, cultivating rumours and believing statements only when contradicted as Otto von Bismarck observed. My diplomacy is a bit too Bronze Age, a tad naïve and heroic my sentences are half seasoned, poeticisms all too prosaic. My lady? As poetry she was a disqualified Olympian struck out on a technicality but granted grace by the judges for one token performace rejected outright for subversion but appreciated in men’s secret breast and underneath their puzzled frown was subconscious applause and she blushed at the meekness and vulnerability of her jailers.


I am short on midget jokes

...ok so that was a low blow.

Let's take a minute to consider margarine. I have long been on the margarines of society, but things are looking butter.


A moment of your time, please: I need to vent.

Yesterday I walked into a pickle barn, and man I felt alienated. It was horrible. Never Again! First, there were all kinds of speeches about pickles. Not that pickles aren't a great food, but you hear the emcee of a pickle conference start to go on and it wears on you. There were awards and speeches and the announcement of Pickle Gala 2007, and it all wrapped with a lot of pickle-related nonsense, ie "Give me Liberty and give me pickles" and "Let he who has no burger cast the first pickle" and of course the trump card of balderdash - "Life is like a box of pickles - you're gonna end up with pickle breath."

You see the kind of situations I get myself in. It's so apprehensive like a three-week buildup to a one-second sneeze, but if I learned anything it's how to adapt to postmodern vicissitudes. Great word, vicissitudes.

I was shopping last night at one of those 24-hour grocery stores, and of course I was whiplashed with epiphanies, thinking "so this is what the Jams & Jellies Aisle looks like at 2 am." I felt so po-mo I could snurgle. J&J, man - that bread spread wipes my blues away. Four-fruit preserves baby.

You ever bend over with your head between your legs and stare in a mirror so you can check out the back of your knee? I do that every two or three days and nobody has ever caught me.

I know a great word: Sluice. You ask me if I got a screw loose, and I just say yes, sluice.

A good way to make friends: return someone's affections. Also, be kind and gentle. Aw shit now I'm all mushy and sweet like sugary mashed potato diarrhea. Dangnizzle. Enough emo. Chatter me up with some testicle talk!


why pizza makes me puke

the reason is simple: cheese. Cheese is one thing to think about, but let's not forget mushrooms. Cheese and mushrooms combined make a stewy stink of a mess in my belly. Mushrooms are halfways poisonous at the best of times; you think my tossing them on a pie and fluffing some dough Italianwise is gonna circumroute my appointment with Dr. Ralph? Well, you got pepperoni in your pants pockets!

I ordered a pie the other day, and no sooner did I begin mowing down then I had a call on the throne-phone. It was urgent, it was collect. The ingredients took hold my abdomenal sac and plotted their escape; my intestines clutched my stomach lining and didn't let go til all particle matter was wrenchèd loose. It was like a pizza-pie Reign of Terror in my gut with my esophagus as guillotine. It was a disturbing experiment in technicolour.

I once supped on a fragrant slice of Margarita, but she proved a foul garlicky minx. I puked away my Sunday. Case closed!



After 7 hours at an office working
for charity,

after 5 hours in a kitchen feeding
100 street youth,

after returning to my parked car and finding a
$30 ticket,

on no other day is there more vicious certainty that I will
die alone.



4 minutes of pessimism

Great moments of stupidity, monumental sentimentalities; hurting just enough to get angry at the pain, not enough to feel the rapture of martyrdom, I guess they call that annoyance. Divide your face into parallel bits, what Bob Dylan wrote to confuse his audience, what the critics pore over, what they have to do, to feed their own audience, the hands that wash each other, this collegial coming together, this conspiracy of collectively missing the mark, this makework project for the mind. Songs about everything but nothing to say, eliminating that one null option from your otherwise continuous rational skill set (well that would put me out of work), true proportional representation means half empty seats in the Commons, the big picture common sense that is far too revolutionary so ignore all abstentions to keep the system lubed. Nobody likes an objective thinker, please give me inflection in your voice. Gesture with your hands, I don’t trust my ears; I need all five senses, I need a common message in all my human dimensions. But you aren't a typical scientist, and love don’t follow rules except drug highs and addictions and that coked-up dopamine tingling followed by decades of oxytocin injections if we're lucky. But I'm luckier at cards.


Blah blah blah!

There's no good feeling I can’t curdle,
no tonguetwister I can’t hurdle

you come together, you and yourself, your history and expectations, your
fear of death by abandonment, your fear of smothering by a well-
intentioned government. You push and pull, you pull wool, you oversell
your qualities but meekness makes you shakykneed. You leave, you’re a
man and men don’t stay so keep moving, women want to change you, you who
own no mirror, you who are a stranger. Addicted to unpredictability,
ironic by definition and solipsistically erroneous but vindicated by
self-righteous self-derision. Dutiful duplicity or beauty in simplicity?
This paradox is evergreen, the message isn’t at all, the canvass is art
itself, you stare at yourself upside-down in a spoon, you’d sooner press
enter than escape, you’re trapped in articulate distortions and a
million degradations from generosity to rape.


April 7 2004

The worst thing about that particular flight of fancy, is how seriously I took it.

A question I won’t answer, an impending cancer, a thought I won’t entertain, the creeping revolution of the brain, and George is talking to himself tonight. Who can hear me who can hear me? The limitless yearning, the pining the churning.

The basic fight of the basest writer, and the most long-winded purging onto the Apple-mac pagination.

I am the tallest fig in the world, I own this supermarket like a Rio Grande cowhand. We should stack pots of beans in an oblong manner, from thinnest to thickest along the parquet floor. It is a matter of pure interest, it is a matter of simple quisling, and the quixotic toter the windmill fellers and the amorphic panoply of degustation. Innervated and deliquidated, and the rigourous tumult.

Threshing and swift so delicate and gossamer Phoenicians? My ivory silk tower, my tall white gleaming denouement.

How many madmen will be unleashed? In my heart I was broken

Why does this chick even want me? I was too tired to fight her off. I am getting my revenge now, and does it make me happy? One day my heart will catch up with my brain.

I sit like Zen at my board, things are flowing, assembly line well-oiled machine, the 1972 Miami Dolphins or the Green Bay Packers of old. You know what’s coming but you just can’t stop it.