A suspicion, a doubt, a jealousy
grew in my mind,
which turned the hairs on my head to filthy snakes
as though my thoughts
hissed and spat on my scalp.
My bride’s breath soured, stank
in the grey bags of my lungs.
I’m foul mouthed now, foul tongued,
There are bullet tears in my eyes.
Are you terrified?
It’s you I love,
perfect man, Greek God, my own;
but I know you’ll go, betray me, stray
So better by for me if you were stone.
I glanced at a buzzing bee,
a dull grey pebbly fell
to the ground.
I glanced at a singing bird,
a handful of dusty gravel
I looked at a ginger cat,
shattered a bowl of milk.
I looked at a snuffling pig,
a boulder rolled
in a heap of shit.
I stared in the mirror.
Love gone bad
showed me a Gorgon.
I stared at a dragon.
from the mouth of a mountain.
And here you come
with a shield for a heart
and a sword for a tongue
and your girls, your girls.
Wasn’t I beautiful
Wasn’t I fragrant and young?
who’s most afraid of death?thou
art of him
utterly afraid,i love of thee
and truly i would be
near when his scythe takes crisply the whim
of thy smoothness. and mark the fainting
murdered petals. with caving stem.
But of all most would i be one of them
round the hurt heart which do so frailly cling….)
i who am but imperfect in my fear
Or with thy mind against my mind,to hear
nearing our hearts’ irrevocable play—
through the mysterious high futile day
an enormous stride
(and drawing thy mouth toward
my mouth,steer our lost bodies carefully downward.
it is funny, you will be dead some day.
By you the mouth hair eyes,and i mean
the unique and nervously obscene
need;it’s funny. They will all be dead
knead of lustfulhunched deeplytoplay
lips and stare the gross fuzzy-pash
—dead—and the dark gold delicately smash….
grass,and the stars,of my shoulder in stead.
It is a funny,thing. And you will be
and i and all the days and nights that matter
knocked by sun moon jabbed jerked with ecstasy
….tremble (not knowing how much better
than me will you like the rain’s face and
the rich improbable hands of the Wind)
Webster was much possessed by death
And saw the skull beneath the skin;
And breastless creatures under ground
Leaned backward with a lipless grin.
Daffodil bulbs instead of balls
Stared from the sockets of the eyes!
He knew that thought clings round dead limbs
Tightening its lusts and luxuries.
Donne, I suppose, was such another
Who found no substitute for sense;
To seize and clutch and penetrate,
Expert beyond experience,
He knew the anguish of the marrow
The ague of the skeleton;
No contact possible to flesh
Allayed the fever of the bone.
Grishkin is nice: her
Russian eye is underlined for emphasis;
Uncorseted, her friendly bust
Gives promise of pneumatic bliss.
The couched Brazilian jaguar
Compels the scampering marmoset
With subtle effluence of cat;
Grishkin has a maisonette;
The sleek Brazilian jaguar
Does not in its arboreal gloom
Distil so rank a feline smell
As Grishkin in a drawing-room.
And even the Abstract Entities
Circumambulate her charm;
But our lot crawls between dry ribs
To keep our metaphysics warm.
I really do feel like
I am in some French
down a general
cup of tea. The
lights are thus
and I squiggling
to my work
day that’s captured
not the squares
of the cinema
I think writing
not a form
of it. It’s feeling
felt. All this
as a matter
So this guy walks into a dragon’s lair
and he says
why the long tale?
HAR HAR BUDDY
says the dragon
The dragon’s a classic
the ‘57 Chevy of existential chthonic threats
take in those Christmas colors, those
impervious green scales, sticky candy-red firebreath,
comes standard with a heap of rubylust
Kick the tires, boy.
See how she rides.
Sit down, kid, says the dragon. Diamonds
roll off her back like dandruff.
Oh, you’d rather be called a paladin?
I’d rather be a unicorn.
Always thought that
was the better gig. Everyone thinks
you’re innocent. Everyone calls you
pure. And the girls aren’t afraid
they come right up with their little hands out
for you to sniff
like you’re a puppy
and they’re gonna take you home.
They let you put your head right
in their laps.
But nobody on this earth
ever got what they wanted. Now
I know what you came for. You want
my body. To hang it up on a nail
over your fireplace. Say to some milk-and-rosewater chica
who lays her head in your lap
look how much it takes
to make me feel like a man.
We’re in the dark now, you and me. This is primal
shit right here. Grendel, Smaug, St. George. You’ve been
called up. This is the big game. You don’t have
to make stupid puns. Flash your feathers
like your monkey bravado
can impress. I saw a T-Rex fight a comet
and lose. You’ve
got nothing I want.
Here’s something I bet you don’t know:
every time someone writes a story about a dragon
a real dragon dies.
Something about seeing
and being seen
something about mirrors
that old tune about how a photograph
can take your whole soul. At the end
of this poem
I’m going to go out like electricity
in an ice storm. I’ve made peace with it.
That last blockbuster took out a whole family
of Bhutan thunder dragons
living in Latvia
the fumes of their cleargas hoard
hanging on their beards like blue ghosts.
A dragon’s gotta get zen
You want to cut me up? Chickenscratch my leather
with butcher’s chalk:
cutlets, tenderloin, ribs for the company barbecue,
chuck, chops, brisket, roast.
I dig it, I do.
I want to eat everything, too.
When I look at the world
I see a table.
All those fancy houses, people with degrees, horses and whales,
bankers and Buddha statues
the Pope, astronauts, panda bears and yes, paladins
if you let me swallow you whole
I’ll call you whatever you want.
Look at it all: waitresses and ice caps and submarines down
at the bottom of the heavy lightless saltdark of the sea
Don’t they know they’d be safer
I could be big for them
I could hold them all
My belly could be a city
where everyone was so loved
they wouldn’t need jobs. I could be
post-scarcity dragonhearted singularity.
I could eat them
and feed them
and eat them
and feed them.
This is why I don’t get to be a unicorn.
Those ponies have clotted cream and Chanel No. 5 for blood
and they don’t burn up like comets
with love that tastes like starving to death.
And you, with your standup comedy knightliness,
covering Beowulf’s greatest hits on your tin kazoo,
you can’t begin to think through
what it takes to fill up a body like this.
It takes everything pretty
and everything true
and you stick yourself in a cave because
your want is bigger than you.
I just want to be
the size of a galaxy
so I can eat all the stars and gas giants
without them noticing
and getting upset.
Is that so bad?
what love looks like?
what you want, too?
I’ll make you a deal.
Come close up
stand on my emeraldheart, my sapphireself
the goldpile of my body
Close enough to smell
everything you’ll never be.
Don’t finish the poem. Not for nothing
is it a snake
that eats her tail
and means eternity. What’s a few verses worth
anyway? Everyone knows
poetry doesn’t sell. Don’t you ever feel
like you’re just
a story someone is telling
about someone like you?
I get that. I get you. You and me
we could fit
inside each other. It’s not nihilism
if there’s really no point to anything.
I have a secret
down in the deep of my dark.
All those other kids who wanted me
to call them paladins,
warriors, saints, whose swords had names,
whose bodies were perfect
they’ve set up a township near my liver
had babies with the maidens they didn’t save
invented electric lightbulbs
thought up new holidays.
You can have my body
just like you wanted.
Or you can keep on fighting dragons
re-staging that same old Cretaceous deathmatch
But hey, hush, come on.
You’ll never fix
I have a forgiveness in me
the size of eons
and if a dragon’s body is big enough
it just looks like the world.
Did you know
the earth used to have two moons?
In Alicante they bowl the barrels
Bumblingly over the nubs of the cobbles
Past the yellow-paella eateries,
Below the ramshackle back-alley balconies,
While the cocks and hens
In the roofgardens
Scuttle repose with crowns and cackles.
Kumquat-colored trolleys ding as they trundle
Passengers under an indigo fizzle
Needling spumily down from the wires:
Alongside the sibliant narhor the lovers
Hear loudspeakers boom
From each neon-lit palm
Rumbas and sambas no ear-flaps can muffle.
O Cacophony, goddess of jazz and of quarrels,
Crack-throated mistress of bagpipes and cymbals,
Let be your con brios, your capricciosos,
Crescendos, cadenzas, prestos and pretissimos,
My head on the pillow
Lullayed by susurrous lyres and viols.
До свиданья, друг мой, до свиданья. Милый мой, ты у меня в груди. Предназначенное расставанье Обещает встречу впереди.
До свиданья, друг мой, без руки, без слова, Не грусти и не печаль бровей,- В этой жизни умирать не ново, Но и жить, конечно, не новей."
Goodbye, my friend, goodbye
My love, you are in my heart.
It was preordained we should part
And be reunited by and by.
Goodbye: no handshake to endure.
Let’s have no sadness — furrowed brow.
There’s nothing new in dying now
Though living is no newer.
— Sergei Yesenin’s (sometimes spelled Esenin) final poem.
The last two years of Yesenin’s life were filled with constant erratic and drunken behavior, but he also created some of his most famous poems. In 1925 Yesenin met and married his fifth wife, Sophia Andreyevna Tolstaya, a granddaughter of Leo Tolstoy. She attempted to get him help but he suffered a complete mental breakdown and was hospitalised for a month. Two days after his release, he allegedly cut his wrist and wrote a farewell poem in his own blood, then the following day hanged himself from the heating pipes on the ceiling of his room in the Hotel Angleterre. He was 30 years old. Sergei Yesenin is interred in Moscow’s Vagankovskoye Cemetery. His grave is marked by a white marble sculpture.
(Source: Wikipedia, via aubade)
The lot by the graves was a dusty hot land;
The river behind -- blue and cool.
You told me, "Well, go to a convent,
Or go marry a fool..."
Princes always say that, being placid or fierce,
But I cherish this speech, short and poor --
Let it flow and shine through a thousand years,
Like from shoulders do mantles of fur.
And, as if in wrong occasion,
I said, "Thou," else...
And an easy smile of pleasure
Lit up dear face.
From such lapses, told or mental,
Every cheek would blaze.
I love you as forty gentle
Sisters love and bless.
Yes, I still remember
The whole thing in a way;
Edge and exactitude
Depend on the day.
Of all that prodigious scene
There seems scanty loss,
Though mists mainly float and screen
Canal, spire and fosse;
Though commonly I fail to name
That once obvious Hill,
And where we went and whence we came
To be killed, or kill.
Those mists are spiritual
Evolved of countless circumstance
Of which I am sure;
Of which, at the instance
Of sound, smell, change and stir,
New-old shapes for ever
And some are sparkling, laughing, singing,
Young, heroic, mild;
And some incurable, twisted,
Shrieking, dumb, defiled.