Anger’s eyes are in its fists

Anger is like a blind tour guide walking you through the town you were born in.
No eye for sights you see. Teaching you only what you never noticed before.
All the steps in between.

Anger’s eyes are in its fingertips.
Anger’s blind curled firsts can’t resist feeling up stranger’s faces.
Showing you places it has never seen.
Taking you down roads to where you’ve always been.
Tapping sidewalks like a telegraph with a long scrape
and a short knock and another long scrape.
That is how anger asks for help.
With a stick and a fist.

Whispering how if you say the word what it will spell hell
in brale across the side of your face. Behind sunglasses.
Shade shaded eyes from stranger’s pries and useless light.
Blind. But still out looking for a fight.
A tour guide for your own home who keeps falling down
and demanding why didn’t you say there was a curb.
Rising to darkness in a world where suns never climb.
Eyes only cry. And the world is just that place below the sky.
And anyone who gets in anger’s way will learn to step aside.
Because any one of them can see, anger is blinding.

Using someone else’s affliction to play out a lame analogy.
And if a blind person gets angry at me for writing this, fine.
It will be worth it to see, so perfectly, the blind lead the blind.

Full On Thanks

What are we supposed to think.
Freedom spread like pink frosting.
Hope dropped like a cherry
on top of Sunday morning.

Life. Religion. Self-perception.
A sunday morning world.
Slicked back hair and shoes
for no other day of the week
tied like the ocean to coral feet.

Dying and we don’t know why.
Just how, and what from, and how soon.
No idea why. At least on paper.
What were we supposed to think.

Watching neighbors across the street.
Carrying grocery bags inside the house,
two days past Thanksgiving. Family living.
Spread out across the state and states and states
of living and being and identities unknown. Finally home.

To make a meal out of life.
And get sick filling up on it.
A dessert desert devoid of the various instances
that make sense of all this, instead of just shit.

Asleep on the couch in front of sharks who hunt
each others balls for a living, slews of parasitic fish
that chase confused, concussed, weeping uncontrollably
offshoots and byproducts. The easy game.

To sit in front of and blink your full tired self away.
Hope full. Food full. Full spoiled.
Not a thought in mind. Besides,
what are we supposed to think,
so full on thanks,
and food,
and drinks.

What intent?

When a man dresses a certain way,
you don’t question his intentions.
You ask him if he has a home.

Too nervous to eat. Free food. Can’t see his feet.
Blown out pants must cover shoes. Trust.
Or you can ask if he has a pair of those as well.
The words are out. Do you have a house?
“I have a tent.” But what intent.
He wants to know if we want
to join his band.

Busted pink yellow ukulele strapped across his back.
Silver Bach Stradivarius trumpet strapped tight to mine.
Putting sound in the air for church-version worship.
At my father’s house. They always ask
and sometimes I even say yes. They let a nameless
young good looking yet odorous young man sit in the back
and watch along. Monotonous non-songs in predictable inflection.
Twenty-seven people who don’t read music all that well
or sing all that well or ever even believed
there was water once at the bottom
of all these wells.

Free heat and an uncomfortable wooden seat
for just under an hour. They even let him shower.
Too anxious to eat there with all of us, so some
equally abandoned person took him out to lunch.

He did not ask my name.
Or if I had a home, or who I am.
Here is a young man who understands.
Who did not know me apart from Adam,
and asked if I wanted
to join his band.

Stirring poetry into cream

Clouds brush rock mounds
tree-covered wooden spoons
stirring soft peach into off white cream.
Melting mountains like butter in a microwave.
Puddled lakes lick like rivers in bowl bottoms.
Catching it like a womb.
Investing it in an egg.
Where water will divide and multiply and sprawl across
whole tables wiggling fingers into earth’s soft butter.
Soaked through fungal sponges stretched clear to the other side.
Cloudy. Milky. Grey with a hint of steel betrayal.
Blue masked and charcoal angled.
And now there are less rock mounds
tree-covered, than before.
Whole milk mountains.
Valley dried sour white rings.
Waking up to rain pouring in the morning.
Stirring it into poetry like cream.

Phone a White Friend

Currently living in a society that promotes the idea the color of your skin or the neighborhood you live in determines the amount of grace and consideration you require being handled by government agents? Have you or your friends been treated completely inappropriately by a person who is paid by your taxes and, in every meaning of the word, is a servant to your safety? Does reading almost any history book cause you to spiral into a depressive fit of rage? Then there is a high probability you are black. Or at least not pale enough or not surrounded by enough pale people to be considered full white. We sincerely apologize. But if this is the case, we developed a world-changing application specifically for you!

We call it Phone a White Friend, and it will start benefiting your life immediately.

We have an incredible team of Caucasian volunteers, armed to the teeth with GoPro’s, bright polo shirts and khakis every color other than khaki. These glowing white people could very really save your life. Just download the inexpensive Phone a White Friend app onto your smart device, and with the press of a button, no matter where you are, white people will start to show up.

Each volunteer has undergone extensive training, and knows to only casually approach a situation while both appearing appalled and holding a smartphone device carefully with two hands, as if it might fall apart any moment. If further assistance is needed, your white friend will call for backup. Pretty soon there will be a small crowd of well dressed white men and women watching and recording any event they should happen upon. Should an officer of the law be involved, our team is trained to express very particular taglines to further aid your situation: “See, this is why father became a senator” or “did you know that prior to assessing a person’s health risk, a taser is not technically non-lethal” or in quite serious circumstances “oh my god, isn’t that Morgan Freeman’s…(they will insert a relation based on customer’s age and gender).

This groundbreaking application has many obvious functions, but Phone a White Friend could be used anywhere, anytime. If you need to win a political argument, or if you encounter a casual racist, you can just request your white friend and within minutes someone will have to re-explain their point or joke while your white friend listens and shakes their head.

This day and age, some things are getting harder and harder to understand, so rather than waiting for white people to actually care about you, download Phone a White Friend today!

The app that makes “mighty white of you” way more than just a phrase!

Not another American

I do not define freedom as having many choices. Every responsible adult knows if choice denotes freedom, we often have none. I recognize freedom more as the ability to be unaffected by the choices of others. From two hundred years ago or just the other day.

I am a human.
I am a child of God.
I have a tax free right to live on the earth,
no matter where or when I was born.
Until humans can choose a feral life,
domestication is not freedom.
Until the time comes when we can decide,
there will never be another free American.

The Sort of Gift a Grandpa Gives.

This is the duct tape they use to repair airplanes.
Heavy. Solid. Abrasively sticky.
Collecting clung hair and dirt.
Shining and black on the surface. Gray and dull within.
Half a mile or so wrapped up around a cardboard ring.
Strong enough to hold together a plane.

A gift given by a man who is a grandfather, through and through.
Like he was born for the job from the very start.
A child destined to be looked up at by children.
Reaching for over-sized glasses and filling nostrils with slobber-fingers.
Touching his eternal smile framed by round red mounded cheeks.
A man who makes his children’s children happier to live.
And tape strong enough to fix wings. The sort of gift a grandpa gives.
Among others. Sneaky smiling while he hands them over.
Wet eyes locked, knowing, he is that timeless sort of clever.

to let go

Time rises like the sun
hard to miss
high above
apparent and inspiring

to work more
quick
finish each day like the last
and time sets just as fast.

Falls
shrinks to halves
into quarters
to slivers and gone.

Time is plenty
and time is none
like the sun
defined by light
but also shadow.

Time
that challenges us to take hold
also asks
begs
to be let go.

Poor Jesus

To the Christian churches of America, I do not recognize the legitimacy of your denominations, but I like your Christ. A man who was raised in one of the most heavily indoctrinated and legally binding cultures ever to exist. What you eat and how you killed it, when you work, when you rest, how you dress, even edits to anatomy, at an early enough age so as to not make edits to memory as well. The laws of the land literally carved into stone. But a legal system changes good into obedient. Bad becomes the measurement of consequences. And without someone chasing around popping hands when they reach for an extra cookie, there won’t be one.

The world could not care less if you eat an extra cookie. Extra cookies are not always healthy. Over time, poor health and a sugary expectation of appetite form their own form of punishment. Eventually murder stops happening because the very action creates a blueprint for how to handle the culprit. There is no thief who does not safeguard against being robbed. They know what they did was wrong. How it invites every other member of their society to take advantage over their loose views of property ownership. I can not imagine the desperation in the thief’s prayer that what all they stole will stay stolen. Paying for things with that currency is the most surefire manner of having a bunch of stuff you will never get to own. No one wants that. They just believe they can get away with it. And that if they get away with it, no harm was done.

That is where legalism gets us.
Moral outsourcing and apologetic justice.

But Christ bypassed all that. Boulders etched in reminders of common decency. A millennia since spent inventing punishments and consequences and new paddles to slap tears onto blank faces. Christ said love your neighbors as you love yourself. But love is a many misused word in our time. So, because I am the unabashedly heretical, blasphemous, sacrilegious for the sake of curiosity sort, I’m going to edit that sentiment. Consider your neighbors as you consider yourself.

Maybe we all fall short of love. But consideration, we might still be capable of. Can we write all the laws needed to govern cookie access? Do we teach mantras like one per person? Do we say, well if you want more, you need to participate, lace up those apron strings and learn to bake. This is what legalism does to us. This is the pillar old Judaism was scratched into. And these are the conditions of the culture Christ woke up within and declared himself the embodiment of. And he said that if you consider your neighbor as you consider yourself, you will take two cookies off the counter. You will have had to morally process that your desire, will more often than not, be present in your neighbor. Good desires. Bad desires. Why do we waste time delegating these subjectivities. It isn’t cost effective, and it cripples moral thinking.

I was raised in a legalistic society. In a lawbound church organization. Educated in a rule-based bureaucratic government-funded form of daycare. And yet this name, this man, the rugged moral individualism toting philosopher, found me here. Were you not listening? Or do you just not actually believe? He didn’t want faith to be a reaction. For all beliefs to be attributed to obedience. And we went ahead and shaped everything in his name exactly the opposite.

I say this all the time, sometimes humorously, this time not so much. Poor Jesus. I feel so sorry for that man. He had thirty three years to describe denominational church structures and candle lighting and the what color stole against what color robe. He didn’t. He said love your neighbors as you love yourself. And love God above all else. I guess for modern people though love is more of a pastime. A romantic holiday, or shape of candy, or cut flowers or glassy looking stones. So I’m going to put my soul on the line and really edit the phrasing of one of my favorite philosophers.

Consider your neighbors, same as you would consider yourselves. And consider your source above all else. Consider all things.

Jesus was literate, bright, capable of writing on paper as well as carving stone. The fact that he didn’t take time to do more of it is a great sign. There is no more potent scripture that came before or afterward, than all the words Christ did not take time to write.

Of Man and Mirrors

At first, self awareness always feels like the world is ending.
But that is not what is happening here.

We are witnessing the birth of our first population-wide form of self-awareness.
We glimpsed ourselves as a species. And it has given all of us an identity crisis.

This is not the end of the world.

It is the cultural equivalent of what most animals do when seeing their reflection for the first time. These are the birthing pains of new consciousness.

A great reckoning of Man and mirrors.