Reading In The Circle Square


Oh please let me read
before the acrobats arrive
to drive me batty
claim my turf
near the museum
or in Central Park

Crowds gather to
see the somersaults
and the gray makeup statue people —
a statue that moves; what
is the thrill?

So I say in my false bass
to carry my voice for three blocks
echoing off buildings:

“Carp not the day, but
kiss the past good-bye,
consume the meats of glory
while salad days are over,
green envy of youth begins,
and I say unto you:

friends, toilmen, bumpkins
lend me your eyes to spy;
I have come to bury Caesar salad
not to praise tyrants as Caesar
fishy and salty like an anchovy

See me praise the dance
on the graves of the grave,
and praise the praise
brought to ceremonials

Cheer me
and I shall be cheered,
for no one can tell me
what the sound is
of one tear clapping
in a thunder kiss
applauding the future”

The Vandals and the Visigoths
the hoodlums of heckler youth shout,
“Shut up Shakespeare creep”
(I translate from the key of F)

But I see her of sultry look
turning to pull me into her
like a force field
to tear me from this
mob of barbarians
into her poetic world of fantasy, and
yes, I’d be her Romeo

I turn to her and read:
“I woke up to my
longing for you; coffee
bit my dream
I stirred your cream

If I dress to seek you
will I know where
passion gallivants

You haunt me with
your many haunts. I
feel a phantom kiss
and miss the bliss from
flesh and ardor, belief bones
troubles massaged in a love whisper,
soothing music
melodic compassion

I am out to find you
driven like the mating birds;
walking, I hear the coos
but let them fly unknowing
for I have a gift for us:
wait ’til you
see me smile
everywhere I know you”

I fold down my sign
pack up
walk to her
wanting to ravish

She says,
what do you really do

—- Douglas Gilbert

Dandelion

I am so cold in August
trying to be a puff ball like a Dandelion,
wishing you’d look
at the seed ball as you blow:
each seed on little parachute
to carry onto
lawns of possibility.

Weeds wish to land,
embed and grow. But no,
no one will let the weed speak.

I am hot to plant an idea
even in winter.

Where is your greenhouse —
I am not merely fuzz: look closer
I am a soul on a parachute
hoping to land on a soulmate and
not to snag on a
telephone pole or power line.

Lawns are too pretty plain;
let me be a flower in the lapel of love
deserving a puff piece in the journal of fulfillment.

Cyrano’s Sword

Words of love from her
promise relief and defeat
of evil sorrows loosed
on the world by swords
forged in ignorance, yet

I still don’t see how
harp words are mightier
than the thunder swords
of nature’s fury
striking out like
a twisted tree branch
of doom

For their protuberance,
even swordfish sword play
although they eat not tubers
like men with sword poles
who cast in waters
for fighters and the
fishy taste of war

When there’s pillaging in the village,
the women who love love
want the men to fight
to love them from harm.

We shall be nosey
sniffing for evil before perfume
having pearls before swine

We must lust for a fight
and fight for a lust
if we are to blow our own noses.

Without a love fight
I’d have cold
shoulders
to sneeze away my life
because harp words
are not sharp swords
though her words cut me

In a Posh Elevator

For Christmas
I’ve shouted a poem
on a street corner
because I have no stage presence
except desperation, awkward
where I hear passersby say,
what’s he doing, and
only my sign clues them in, and
they say, oh it’s poetry, but
I’m taking my frozen
spicy chicken home –
haven’t had such luxury
in a while

I’ve ducked into the posh department store
because I need to find
a bathroom
a single urinal
for the piss of a poet

I could have taken
the stairs to the third floor, but
thought I’d be posh
be nonchalant in an elevator
as if I’d buy gold things

The elevator jams,
stopped, of course, with me
and a pregnant lady in a crowd
of indifference

I’ve got my frozen chicken
which says, fully cooked
and none of us will starve

Into labor –
I’ve heard of this

Natural easy birth –
I’ve heard of that

Everyone who
could be sued, has
turned away

I am reaching in
beyond what is proper

I push my hands
into her vagina
in an indecent way

It is a breach birth
and I must
turn the child around

I am so full
of blood and sorrow
that the child cries
but I am not
turned around

I am sick, and
only glad
the paramedics have arrived
and I can get to the bathroom
before security
throws me out
for not buying any gifts

Broken Dark Things


Broken Dark Things

I know you’ve been seeing
that flashy vile thing:
he’s a rag on the road, and I’ve
got a fine ramming car.

Fast, fast, fast.
Dead, dead, dead.
Yeah, over the edge, woman.

Oh you dirty down broken woman
you betrayed me so bad
made me cry so hard, oh damn

hell I broke my only hope cup
smashed it in shaving mirror
’cause I’m looking at ugly

gonna get that vile thing
you’ve been seeing, even
if it’s fine looking to you

oh hell breaking, can’t be braking
for no cliff

and I’ll be racing to throw that
dead damn bloody rag over the edge

Hell broke my only hope cup
dark whisker shadows
looking ugly, and gonna
ram it ugly, uh, you know what

it must be hell’s whisker shadows
if you’d laugh with another damn
broken down vile thing

it’s gonna die, broken woman…hey;
know what I mean?

Oh you pretty bitty broken woman
you betrayed me so badly
made me cry so hard, oh damn

hell I broke my only hope cup

hell you don’t know no better
than be broken and so am I
broken and betrayed many times

Gonna get that vile handsome rag
you patch on yourself
all hot and dirty

Oh you dirty down broken woman
you betrayed me so bad
made cry so hard, oh damn

yeah, OK, broken woman
go fix yourself
with that vile thing

yeah if that’s your thing
OK

Hell I’m going to Shardsville,
know a woman who’ll
put me in stitches
knows the joke
about being broke

oh broken hearted woman
go fix yourself

I’m going away
to mend myself in Shardsville
where crying is beautiful
and a cup of love is free

Misunderstanding

She knew
once will be enough for him–
in heaven he will not
wait for her last breath

At a moment after death
he spoke to her
emerging in a fog of stunned silence
blending into her thoughts, but
already now soon after
he no longer will speak to her
from the heaven she
wouldn’t deny him
though they fought

She had been taught
she was going to hell
but she had one
last secret to tell him
to ensure the bliss
she wished him

She asked around,
have you spoken to God,
have you seen Him, but
no one was believable

Someone must speak to God
or his Butler, for me
for I can not and someone
must give him my secret

She confessed to the holyman
said, tell him the secret, and
for a moment held her breath

Go now she said,
taking a deep breath, and

shot him dead
as she gladly awaited hell

All three would meet
it’s known
but where
for whom

Somebody Else

You must not wake me
when I’m dreaming of you
frozen in time

I remember you better
the way you never were

I could love you in a dream
if only you would be for real

I sleepwalk in nightmares
tired of life tripping me

If I open my eyes, I hope
you’ll be gone with a sandman
who has begun to sand the roads