Friday, September 30, 2011



o, I'm gonna tell you

what really turns me on --

it's someone tapped into

the lost art of a lost cause

someone giving up

on the whole lousy world

and then choosing to go on

knowing there is no reason to do so

but the doing.

Fucking Sisyphus, man!

nothing gets my panties wet

like a man or a woman

haevy lifting some god-forsaken

boulder up a mountainside


watching them chase it down again.

This is not the same as

tripping over the same stone

I like deliberate futility --

going in with eyes unveiled

to the purposeless purpose

Sisyphus had his eyes wide open

he didn't trip or fall,

I know. Because if he did

i'd be sure to be underneath

him when he did.

His eyes were open, and seeing

he knew his path all too well.

O, if you want to woo me,

tell me about your apathy

how you woke this morning

with a choice between

a shower and a suicide

and decided to get clean,

opened the windows

to let the morning air in

before taking yourself up

the hill again--

and I'm in.

You, shaking your fist at the wind

hollering at the fall leaves falling

putting caterpillars into therapy

telling them they don't have to


writing poems into torn napkins

and asking me


stuff those words down my pants.

Anyting useless, outrageous,

that asks too much

takes too much

and I'm all


Fucking Sisyphus, man

O that's what I'm thinking about

alone in my bed tonight

with my left hand

between my thighs

and my right hand

on this pen,

getting off

on this poem.

-Jeanette Powers

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


To protect my piracy

Data mining with occasional muzak

skids utilizing the versatility of the egg

Do I feel most like an animal
staring up at the dental light
I really don’t know

And will the world end
in the day time
I really don’t know

Fluid resistant face mask makes the case:

I’ll be wearing my Gorby blemish today
in memory of our record of no kills

You wanna live my way?
Whatever that is?

Rational compomise
and the politics of the situation
the next one
their compartments
a little blow

Every stranger near you
the situation
the next one
and so on mid-air captivity refuge for the mind


Defensive advantage.

Zoned in its place, decapitation on screen genocide in its place

off screen

semantics denying the dead
and dying
their right to the word

This is my space
to decompose

a little joyless form
finds its way in

live car crash
preview a head

King of the softies

Friend of King of the softies

Rocking on

If I’m blank you can write
what you want on me

It’s you I write for
& it’s you I don’t trust

-Anselm Berrigan

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


Down in Atlanta
de whitefolks got laws
fo to keep all de niggers
from laughin’ outdoors,

Hope to Gawd I may die
if I aint speakin’ truth
make de niggers do deir laughin’
in a telefoam booth.

-Sterling A. Brown

You know, even if this sloppy
under-age kegger/work-camp/
Animal Planet mini-series we call life
isn’t always “a laughing matter,”

it’s probably safe to assume that laughter
is an absolute necessity for facilitating
the fairly standard (and increasingly common) routines
of Just Barely Getting By and Merely Surviving Life

let alone living well (as an end in and of itself
as well as being the best revenge, they say,
against one’s enemies and detractors),

not unlike food and water,
friends, sex and shelter against the elements

and maybe a reasonable goal or objective
or mission statement of some kind to properly
motivate and devote one’s ever-diminishing
(by seconds/by minutes/by hours/by days/
weeks/months/years/decades/holy crap
what happened to all my) time to,

even if you end up modifying and customizing
or completely changing it out and over
-hauling it a couple of times over the winding
obstacle course of your life,

which, who knows, may just end up being
the thing you give yourself over to-

you know, the whole “living how
you want to on your own terms” thing
we’ve all, no doubt, heard so much about
(the laws of man and physics not withstanding),

shaking things up, every now and then,
just because you can and laughing out loud
as much as possible whenever you want
(or absolutely have) to.

I mean what else can you do but giggle
and guffaw your way through some of the ill-advised
back alleys and gloom-shadowed valleys
that life so often leads you (by hook,
nose or cock) through-

the Modern Courtship Ritual, for example,
and all its many protracted emasculations
and demoralizations and exclusive invitations
to dine and drink alone,
late into the night,

or the requisite hand-wringing subservience
and/or cringing, cap-in-hand, supplication
necessary to assuage and evade the wrath
of the world’s various figurines of authority,

or the repeated implosion
of everything you do to try to improve
your socio/sexual/economic situation

and then there’s that near constant gut
-churning anxiety if not full-on existential terror
of being swept up and swallowed or just simply
trampled by what has often been (and maybe
less than charitably) referred to
as the “bewildered heard,”

and, of course, most disturbingly,
the absurd (though very possibly
unavoidable) daily exchange
of body, soul, time and happiness
for some sort of currency
(if not immediacy
or relevancy)

with which to then immediately about-face
and (foolishly) attempt to buy those
very things back.

How can you not help,
but sit right down
wherever you are,
throw your head
and hands back
from the whole
beautiful, tragi-comic,
life-taking absurdity
of it all

and laugh?

-Jason Ryberg, 2011

Thursday, September 15, 2011


In General

This is about no rain in particular,
just any rain, rain sounding on the roof,
any roof, slate or wood, tin or clay
or thatch, any rain among any trees,
rain in soft, soundless accumulation,
gathering rather than falling on the fir
of juniper and cedar, on a lace-community
of cobwebs, rain clicking off the rigid
leaves of oaks or magnolias, any kind
of rain, cold and smelling of ice or rising
again as steam off hot pavements
or stilling dust on country roads in August.
This is about rain as rain possessing
only the attributes of any rain in general.

And this is about night, any night
coming in its same immeasurably gradual
way, fulfilling expectations in its old
manner, creating heavens for lovers
and thieves, taking into itself the scarlet
of the scarlet sumac, the blue of the blue
vervain, no specific night, not a night
of birth or death, not the night forever
beyond the frightening side of the moon,
not the night always meeting itself
at the bottom of the sea, any sea, warm
and tropical or starless and stormy, night
meeting night beneath Arctic ice.
This attends to all nights but no night.

And this is about wind by itself,
not winter wind in particular lifting
the lightest snow off the mountaintop
into the thinnest air, not wind through
city streets, pushing people sideways,
rolling ash cans banging down the block,
not a prairie wind holding hawks suspended
mid-sky, not wind as straining sails
or as curtains on a spring evening, casually
in and back over the bed, not wind
as brother or wind as bully, not a lowing
wind, not a high howling wind. This is
about wind solely as pure wind in itself,
without moment, without witness.
Therefore this night tonight--
a midnight of late autumn winds shaking
the poplars and aspens by the fence, slamming
doors, rattling the porch swing, whipping
thundering black rains in gusts across
the hillsides, in batteries against the windows
as we lie together listening in the dark, our own
particular fingers touching--can never
be a subject of this specific conversation.

-Pattiann Rogers

Monday, September 5, 2011


It all started out a fairly ideal Saturday;
no obligations to anybody but ourselves
and weather conditions that would make you
a believer, the whole goddamn world wide-open
with youthful hope and possibility,

but, somehow, we still wound up,
neck-deep, in a big, steaming vat of

As in some place we really didn’t want to be.
As in “seriously, what the fuck!?”
As in the collective kill zone
of four military cops who’ve suddenly
burst into the room.

Scowling, no-nonsense faces. Check.
Hands on side-arms. Check.
Three shoe boxes full of weed
on the coffee table between us. Check.

“Gentlemen, let’s see some I.D., please.”

And it had been such a fine day in America, too.
A glorious, damn-near perfect day.
A big, phatt fluffy clouds adrift like land-masses of ice
on a bright, blue ocean of sky kind of day;

Denver, mid-September, 60-some-odd degrees and
we’d been there on “vacation” for a couple of weeks,
working part-time temp-jobs in the day,
hitting parties and bars at night,
crashing at my buddy’s second cousin, Dickey’s place

(who, by the way, had been facilitating
a friends-and-family rate/very close to wholesale deal for us
with this white Rasta/grower-friend of his for some kind of
we were then gonna take back to Kansas
to disseminate for vast fortunes, no doubt).

And it was barely even noon
before we’d already put down a couple rounds
of fairly elaborate and exotic boat drinks
as well as some seriously amazing appetizers
at this Thai place we’d just found that day.

And then we did what we did every Saturday;
hit every used bookstore and record store in town
(and back in those days (not that long ago, really)
Denver had a shitload) so we always managed
to come away with some really good scores.

Then we just wandered around for a while
with a couple of shorties, looking at girls,
lounging about on park benches
like lazy vagabond princes, ,
stopping in at whatever tavern or pub
that grabbed our eye for a quick pint and a shot
and maybe a little of the latest, local gossip.

And all the while my buddy talking
like we really were gonna be these bigshots
with all the rich kid/pot-heads back in
Lawrence, Kans-ass (and all we gotta do is
make a trip to Denver maybe once a month
at most and how shitty is that? Not!)

And then
we finally get the call.
Time for the big meet-up/sit down.

And so, here we all are now,
shitting gold bricks and sweating ice cubes
in this cozy (in a wood-panel, big fire place,
animal heads mounted on walls kind
of cozy) office den at the heart of this massive,
Bruce Wayne type estate (probably complete
with secret passages and a giant fortress/bunker
deep beneath it).

And these MP motherfuckers mean business
and our young, wayward lord of the manor/
Yah, Mon!/ganja king is suddenly sputtering
and overflowing with “everybody be cool,
everybody be cool, everybody just be cool!”
And I’m thinking aint this just the wicked step-mother
of all misunderstandings?

Seems like this guy never mentioned to anybody
that his father was a four-star general,
a four-star general connected directly to the Whitehouse
and the Pentagon via the Bat Phone, here;
yes, the very phone that “Step On His Dick” Dickey
had to pick up and yell into, “if I don’t have a pizza here
in fifteen minutes, I’m lettin’ the monkeys loose!” Click.

Seems like maybe this guy could have picked
a better place to “make the exchange,” (as they say),
like maybe the mini-mansion/guest house
he lived in out back (or maybe that one just wasn’t
wrath of Jah, jaw-droppingly, awe-inspiring enough, Mon.

Seems like, at the very least,
he could have made it
a little more crystal fucking clear;
no matter what else you do in this house;
raid the fridge, rape the dog,
smoke the old man’s Cubans
and drink his two-hundred dollar,
single-malt scotch,
you don’t ever,
ever touch
the red phone.


Now we fucking know.

-Jason Ryberg, 2011

Thursday, September 1, 2011


*Embryonic stem cell programs not constitutionally

authorized. (May 2007)

*Voted NO on expanding research to more embryonic stem

cell lines. (Jan 2007)

*Voted NO on allowing human embryonic stem cell

research. (May 2005)

*Voted YES on banning Family Planning funding in US aid

abroad. (May 2001)

*Voted YES on banning late term abortions. (Apr 2000)

*No federal funding of abortion, and pro-life. (Dec


*Voted YES on restricting bankruptcy rules. (Jan 2004)

*Voted YES on protecting the Pledge of Allegiance. (Sep


*Voted YES on banning gay adoptions in DC. (Jul 1999)

*Voted YES on ending affirmative action in college

admissions. (May 1998)

*Voted NO on $84 million in grants for Black and

Hispanic colleges. (Mar 2006)

*Voted YES on vouchers for private & parochial schools.

(Nov 1997)

* “Abolish the federal Department of Education.” (Dec


*Supports a Constitutional Amendment for school prayer.

(May 1997)

*Voted NO on removing oil & gas exploration subsidies.

(Jan 2007)

*Voted NO on keeping moratorium on drilling for oil

offshore. (Jun 2006)

*Voted NO on raising CAFE standards; incentives for

alternative fuels. (Aug 2001)

*Voted YES for oil drilling & development in ANWR. (Aug


*Voted NO on starting implementation of Kyoto Protocol.

(Jun 2000)

*Rated 76% by the Christian Coalition: a pro-family

voting record. (Dec 2003)

*Voted NO on $156M to IMF for 3rd-world debt reduction.

(Jul 2000)

*Rated 76% by CATO, indicating a pro-free trade voting

record. (Dec 2002)

*Voted NO on requiring lobbyist disclosure of bundled

donations. (May 2007)

*Voted YES on requiring photo ID for voting in federal

elections. (Sep 2006)

*Voted NO on campaign finance reform banning soft-money

contributions. (Feb 2002)

*Allow citizens to carry concealed firearms. (Nov 1996)

*Rated A by the NRA, indicating a pro-gun rights voting

record. (Dec 2003)

*Abolish federal Medicare entitlement; leave it to

states. (Dec 2000)

*Voted YES on continuing military recruitment on

college campuses. (Feb 2005)

*Voted YES on permitting commercial airline pilots to

carry guns. (Jul 2002)

*Voted YES on building a fence along the Mexican

border. (Sep 2006)

*Rated 100% by FAIR, indicating a voting record

restricting immigration. (Dec 2003)

*Voted NO on restricting employer interference in union

organizing. (Mar 2007)

*Voted NO on increasing minimum wage to $7.25. (Jan


*Voted NO on strengthening the Social Security Lockbox.

(May 1999)

*Rated 30% by the ARA, indicating an anti-senior voting

record. (Dec 2003)

*Voted YES on retaining reduced taxes on capital gains

& dividends. (Dec 2005)

*Voted YES on making the Bush tax cuts permanent. (Apr


*Abolish federal welfare; leave it all to states. (Dec 2000)