Sunday, November 15, 2009

Marilyn Monroe never died.

They pretended to be stars-
eased their way into life
through lenses and
mediocre scripts they'd never have the means to produce.

It didn't matter.

They stumbled
over move after move
imagining we were watching-
waiting to criticize
or applaud.

Some of them acted as though
every move could make or break them.
Others didn't give a damn,
as long as someone was watching.

But none of us knew where to look.

How could we have been so unaware-
those of us who thought that the best moments were candid
and the greatest scenes unrehearsed?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Los Angeles

I had to write an ode to you.
I apologize.

I dragged my feet on your streets
never once looking down at the mess I was making.

I cursed your unpaved roads while driving on them.

Los Angeles,
don't let the earthquakes stop you
from building more than two-stories high.
Look at all of your skyscrapers-
you were afraid they wouldn't last this long.

I'm sorry
for assuming you'd never change.
I was hungry
and couldn't find a place to eat.


I saw elephants dangle from string
and women jump from ships
but never touch water.

I could've been hit at any time-
but my timing was right.

I dodged and dived
and felt the fall of my friends-
so much so, I thought I had fallen too
but my feet were steady.

So I followed you
hid in your car
tried not to move.

Remember the bullets we dodged
and the men building bombs outside of your window?

It's a miracle we're still here.

It's not your fault

Who are you
touching me in a room you didn’t bother to clean because
you didn’t know I was coming.

You call me beautiful and
kiss my oily face,
get your fingernails caught in hair
I didn’t bother to clean
I didn’t know I was coming.

You tell me I’m beautiful in the morning,
that you never realized what I looked like in
muted sunlight.

My eyes are crystal-
full of tears.

Who are you
telling me I’m beautiful when
I’m wearing clothes that don’t fit right-
a t-shirt from some place I’ve never been.

Screen prints of
creatures with crystal eyes and big teeth
howl at a moon no one can see.

Who are you who kisses me-
before I’ve brushed the plaque off my teeth.

I don’t usually look like this-
not on mornings when I wake up in my own bed.