Jaw moves like a hinge in a shadow doorway. Squeaks like it’s unoiled, needing lubrication. Creak of the floorboards in the haunted house that is your past life, you unforgotten psyche. Crystal ball glowing purple and pink to see the electricity within. Yellow gold streaks of lightning. Cloudy outlook. Unreliable email. Clenching the mandible I feel the tension, pressing down hard gripping my teeth. Molars bearing down like a battalion with their shields up. Taste the saliva tinged with blood. Metallic warmth. Melting down shrapnel in my mouth. Balling it up to load in shotgun. Front seat to all of this. I see the skeleton through the man’s face. X-Ray vision that you can’t turn off. Radiation through the eye sockets, now glowing green like X-Men. Feel the bone and it’s surprisingly rough to touch. It’s hinges connected to so much more above it. Like an apartment or good plumbing. If I were to touch it disconnected from the rest it would feel heavy yet hollow in my hand. Turn my hand to skeletal stone. It could be ground to dust. Feeling the fine powder run through my fingers and feel it hit the Earth. Like gentle comets. Gentle laundry detergent. A callback to a different time. A clock with letters and not numbers. Timeline with no dates. I thirst for focus and non-distraction. It is trying today. One more flip of the calendar and we’re in next year again. Two pairs of glasses, which one can you see better on? X-Ray vision or normalcy? Counting down moments until we can start all over again. Renew with no regret. At least until we remember again. Mandible handlebar bicycle with streamers at the end. I will steer you down the street. Busy New York City with car horns and mortality reminders at every corner checkpoint.


Multiple masks in pentimento. One behind the other. Jungian personae. Peeling back the layers of a person with or without an identity crisis. Sometimes deliberate, sometimes factual. Ulterior motives usually will generate a facade. A front. Making something appear different than what it really is. A lie? Deception. Deceit. I before E except after C. A lifting of the curtain. Hamlet. Shakespeare. My brother’s test. Likely not scantron. Number 2 lead pencil. Graphite now. Some of us left school without being great test takers. I feel like I would have done better on a different rubric. But I kept up a facade. I think I scraped by too much. I should have paid attention more, I should have tried harder. I had so much anxiety then and didn’t know how to name it. I would practice guitar for hours in throes of apathy and heady emotion. If I only knew then what I knew now. Could it be too late to chance? Too late to change? Would it make the difference? I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately.


Stilted like a jester walking around on two wooden uprights Hunchback of Notre Dame Topsy Turvy scene Disney movie popcorn 3D glasses terrified, entertainted. Robotronic pedantic. Old school blackboard. Barbie move movie playset. Childhood toys and my basket of beanie babies. Playing. Playing for hours. What the clock. Watch the clock. For a vocabulary word I do not ever use, I am putting down more than I thought I could, even if it is rambling and nonsensical. Rigid. Frozen. The one that does not flow. A frozen river on the page. Hand cramp. Menstrual hand camp. Menstrual hand cramp. The Cramps. Punk Rock. Music forever. The human compassion, capacity to love and capacity to hate. Hate crime. Newspaper manifesto. Inciting incidents. Over many people. Magazines that gloss over intellectualism and solely focus on pop culture. Pop Coulter. Conservative right wing media they know what talking points sell. What will make porcupine pin pricks bristle.


Gripping ceramic handle, or forgoing it completely, instead opting for rounding my left hand around the cup itself so I may more directly feel the warm contents with in. Coffee, black. Bitter notes skate along my tongue constantly questioning, “Do I really like this?”. A 10 fluid ounce customary staple in a house or dorm or apartment or anywhere. Personal or plain. At risk of shattering everyday due to the overflow. The surface is smooth and well wrought. But it can break just as easily. Wondering about who first invented this apparatus that could hold liquid so well. Could make it portable and manageable. What an invention of it’s time. Probably some Neanderthal daydream following the discovery of mud and clay. Could it have been the Native Americans? Or Natives of another land? How they must have discovered how to dry it in the sun. I have broken many mugs. And glasses. I’m 29 years old. It would have been astonishing if I never had.

Mug as face as mugshot. Blinding flash holding my number and information. The smell of vomit and stale beer and paperwork. Freezing cold, my skin prickles and hair stands on end. I am so anxious I’m calm. Glazed over eyes. Righteous in my stance. Not defensive, just standing there. Taking direction like a trick pony as I change my angles. Cold metal bars, dirty concrete floor. Moaning of a hangover come to quick or come too late. It will be printed out on photo paper gloss and uploaded onto the Internet. It will exist forever in time, even after I am dead. A silly misunderstanding or a big thing that got caught like a fish on a pontoon in the deep sea. Heavy hooks piercing weak bait. The end of the food chain. The beginning of it. Coffee gets cold and can no longer keep its heat. Open air open mouth. Steam disappears out and drifts off take it’s heat to do die out in the open air. The mug’s use is temporary. Until the liquid grows cold, until it breaks. Until both. Having to clean up ceramic shards dreaming of gluing them back together.


Murky water tumbles along hitting rock after rock, kissing low hanging branches moving aquatic life more quickly down the main highway. Perhaps at first the water appears murky, but bend down and cup it in your hands it appears clear. However, beyond the eye many protozoans and amoebas lurk. Don’t wash your face with it. Don’t drink it. Located interior woodland shaded from the sun as it tries to peak though stained glass branches the ravine runs though it. The river runs though it. I could pick you up and cast you off to another place or an afterlife where you’d never know if you’re soul had actually left this earth. It is the river Styx and you don’t even know it. A sure death. A sure thrill. There are parts where the ravine rages and white crests form at the tips of rolling waves, these waves again hitting rocks and trees and trash. The rocks are slippery. The wood so soaked you could never make a fire with it. The ravine is ravenously waiting to digest and scoop up anything foolish enough to fuck with it. I has eyes. It sees you wondering. As you walk along the bank through snakes and spiders and other wilderness delights, it can see you pondering and weighing the costs. You could take a kayak or a canoe to it, but at your own peril.