Six Faces

I live in a miasma of ashes
and the haze of Southern Comfort,
speaking molasses, stuck in sorghum,

and the only sweetness in this life
was watching her smoke
Newport Lights out of the hexahedron.

The tiled table top holds
nail polish droplets,
poker bloodstains and gin rummy,
Peach Shnapps and dominoes,
the girls laughing at the guys.

The bed sheets have been stripped
into bandages and banners
announcing the end of the world,
the odds of love are even with lightning
and true happiness striking lottery winners.

I found a beige bra and a mini skirt
in the bottom drawer; did we eat
bloody steaks across from each other?

Late night Jerry Springer and clatter
before the internet age took over,
drunken dawns and halitosis face to face,
fucking till we were out of breath,

I discovered six faces after developing
lost Kodak cartridges; witness ecstasy
and death, a toothache, a summer’s dress,
a crooked smile over pot filled eyes.

So easy to forget about that time,
looking out the gravel driveway,
the lights being turned off
at the end of the cul-de-sac.

This poem first appeared in Poetic Diversity in April of 2012.

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The One I Love

Don’t bite I said
biting is base
she turned her back to me
sat on side of bed
kicked her legs out tiny tantrum
channel on MTV changed got louder
she hummed a song she liked
sang she half-knew the words
we made out wet saliva
I turned my head
really sought her lips out
kissed them sucked them
she smiled stuck out her tongue
licked my lips I let her
I stared into her pouty
pushed harder into her mouth
with my mouth she sat up again
said no no huh huh naw no no way
time passed on tv was on
some movie
Netflix movie
fan twirled overhead
she stretched
took off her shorts
she naked underneath
keenly I already knew
she asked if I liked her ass
she writhes on bed
I told her I loved her ass
she looked angrily
how much do you love my ass
I said her ass is awesome
her ass is best
she has one hell sexy ass
I want to fuck her ass
she screams pounds on pillows
her fists tiny tiny fists
did leg tantrum kick again
confused I would not fuck her ass
only fuck her from behind promise
she exhausted breathing shallow
I thought she fell asleep
she stretched again looked at me
cunningly cuntishly
asked do you like my ass smiled
innocent not innocent
grabbed me kissed me bit me
I rubbed her ass she stuck knee between my legs
pressed nipples against me
breathed over bit my ear
hard don’t bite
base I whispered softer
I tried convincing her
hey baby I love your ass
I love everything about your ass
your ass really turns me on
I rubbed her ass reached between her legs
parted thick pubic hair from behind
dipped tip of my fingers in
she arched her back no
kicked legs bounced on bed
yelled grunt never gonna happen
never ever gonna happen
slap my hand slapped my face away
scratch claw.

Las Fajitas
we sat outside she could vape
hot as blazes sunglasses reflection
two sips strawberry margarita
threw up down side of balcony
right when they brought entrees
paid I don’t know forty bucks
left food on table
starved stopped at Sonic
she insisted on a Coney
you’re too drunk to eat honey
I’ll be hungry later.

Later
Redbox movie
all I want to do sweetie
watch this with you
already return overdue
The One I Love
about fighting couple
couple who are fighting
go cabin up in the woods
mountains nature
fix their relationship
meet their doppelgangers
their doubles something
their twin selves
no not a horror a romance
you will love this film
already tried watching twice
got sick yesterday
I slept on recliner
you passed out I took shower
somehow gum in my hair.

She moans now
torturous sleep
sleep nightmares
guttural low moans
distortion discomfort
restless leg syndrome
she twists in bed twister
catathrenia
I shrink make myself small
stay long I can stand
watching her
agonizingly
instinctively
she guards her mons venus
she will wrench
thrash twist diagonally
pushing me out
her sweat
vodka breath sweat
get out get out get out
head butt butt heads
sit up push me
flop down moan
dry heave
sleep burp moan.

Some nights
I sleep on the couch
I sleep on the floor.

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Jameson Bayles – “searching for a voice” & “haiku”

“Jameson Bayles, a Kansas City, Missouri resident, has been published in various literary magazines and journals. His most recent work can be viewed in issue #10 of Hedgerow and in the poetry anthology ‘The Artistic Muses,’ published by True Colors Press.  Jameson was a featured reader at The Cellar Poetry Series at the Weston Wine Company in Weston, Missouri as well as being featured at ‘It’s A Poetry Thing’ at The Bottleneck in Lawrence, Kansas during National Poetry Month.”


searching for a voice

miles davis and I
went out lookin’ for ms right
the other night

i
remember
my first time

dana scully showed up
pinned me
to my overused easy boy recliner
impaled me
with that midsummer sky stare of hers
she whispered
“semantic symbolism
semantic symbolism”
’till I passed out

when I opened my eyes
i saw a young girl
who slit her wrists
and a poet
dripped
onto
the
floor

i wanted to have her pale palms read
by those who knew her, but they replied
“not all pencils have erasers”

miles davis grabbed
his hypodermic voice
and replied
“string less guitars
overfed dresser drawers
pigeon shit on discarded pages of the Wall Street journal.
reversed circumcisions,
road rage,
frightened coins in a dry urinal.

strap me to your water logged crucifix
pitch me over that bridge you burned long ago
I am underneath the water’s edge like
prechewed gum after a seven o’clock show”

i said
“do wop be bop
and how the fuck
is miles davis anyway?”

i guess I just wanted
to make him proud
of

Haiku

empty post office –
my echo flees
an eager child

stronger than I –
my dying pet
takes his final breath

unanswered questions –
an attentive cat
watches me shave

*Editor’s Note

I have become interested in Haiku and Senryu within the past year or so. I can’t pinpoint the exact moment but I can say with certainty that my interest was peaked after reading an excellent series of Haibun written by the Los Angeles poet and editor, Marie Lecrivain. I liken the discovery of my interest in Haiku to finally drinking a good bottle of wine which sparks an interest in vinification and oenology. In fact, Haiku and winemaking both have many traits in common: Both take years to master, both vary widely by region, both are deceptively simple to the uninitiated, both induce a rare pleasure when imbibed.

I won’t bore you with the details of writing Haiku, in fact, the details would entail complete volumes. The last several books on writing poetry I have bought and read have all been about writing Haiku. My favorite book which I recommend is “The Essential Haiku” edited by Robert Haas. This book contains an excellent introduction and also contains poetry by Basho, Buson, & Issa, the three great masters. Suffice to say that, in my limited understanding, what I enjoy about Haiku and Senryu is the terseness, sparse language, pithiness, strong forcible metaphor.

Japanese Haiku is stricter to form and more traditional. American Haiku is more, ahem, “loosey-goosey.” This is not to say that American Haiku is subordinate to the Japanese original. This is to say that American Haiku has employed a different path and evolution in the poetic form. For instance, in American Haiku, a poet does not have to count syllables. Well, Japanese poets did not have to count syllables either because “syllables” do not translate very well in Kana. But, in American Haiku, a poet doesn’t have to sit there and count strictly to seventeen syllables is what I am trying to say. As long as a poet is “in the ballpark” is good enough. Three line stanzas can be broken up to four lines or five lines, whatever. A poet can even write the Haiku one word per line.

My friend Richard Modiano told me once a long time ago that the difference between Haiku and Senryu is that Haikus have a focus on “nature” and Senryus have a focus on “human nature.”

Jameson Bayles’ poem, “searching for a voice” is a perfect example of a great poem which incorporates Haiku elements into the body of the complete poem at large. The first stanza is a well written Senryu if isolated. The same with the first three lines of the “Dana Scully” stanza and the first three lines of the stanza of the girl with the slit wrists. The language is sparse, concise, precise, and forceful, like a machine gun.

My favorite stanza is also a Senryu where Bayles inserts actual rhythm and music, “i said / ‘do wop be bop / and how the fuck / is miles davis anyway?’”

Included after the poem “searching for a voice” are three Haiku written by Bayles so that the reader can compare and contrast his written single Haiku with the Haiku elements he incorporated into the longer poem.

– Angel Uriel Perales, June 22nd, 2015

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The Snee Poets

Going through the two dozen or so banker’s boxes in the back of my storage closet has only served to remind me how much University work I’ve done which I have then consequently forgotten. Four boxes full of essays, essays on movies, books, mysteries, art, literature, humanities, and writers, I’ve forgotten how much I photocopied in the library before the age of the internet, boxes full of articles and chapters taken from books and even sometimes whole books copied altogether. Then there are the screenplays, many provided by the film conservatory itself. I have original copies of Chinatown, Fatal Attraction, The Hitcher, Terminator, The Apartment, The Exorcist, to name just a few. We really did live on that campus 24-7, taking classes in the morning, then taking advantage of the library before afternoon classes, then watching screenings going into the night, and then studying and writing past midnight. How we made lasting friendships at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts I will never know. We barely had any time for socializing. And we also had production, making student films constantly all four years. I think we socialized on set and that was about the only time.

Among my papers I found reminders of my life 20 years ago. Love letters, Dear John letters, letters from home, bills paid and unpaid, grades, notes from professors, I have your autograph Laura Hart McKinny, you of OJ Simpson Trial infamy and awesome screenwriting teacher, on a note letting me know of a pending office meeting. I found a 1997 phone book of Winston-Salem, why I thought that was important to lug across the wasteland of America to Los Angeles I have no idea. I found a catalog for “Adam and Eve” which was about my only access to masturbatory titillation at that time. I found two SVHS tapes labeled “student films 1994” probably containing my sophomore final project and that of some of my classmates. I found a post-it note which simply read, “Fuck you Romulus.” I found a torn piece of paper which read, “Michael Cacoyannis, See Stella today don‘t forget!” I imagine that was a reference to attend a screening or to check out the LaserDisc from the film archives to watch for a class the next day or later in the week. I underlined Stella in the reminder three times so the admonition must have been important.

All that knowledge taken in. All that knowledge consequently forgotten. And by the time I got to Los Angeles none of that knowledge mattered. None of it mattered, not the fact that I was a Dean’s Scholar and a recipient of a scholarship all four years or that I absorbed all the classic films like a fish first experiencing water. None of it mattered. The only thing that mattered was how well I got along with others in a workplace and how fast I could turn my work around without mistakes in a newsroom and if I was willing to work through my lunch or work overtime without complaint. Being clever and educated took a back seat to being able to connect with others on a very basic level. I had to be able to talk sports with the guys and gossip about the love life of celebrities with the ladies. That was the extent of what got you noticed in a workplace. This life of a love for films and writing poetry and actually being educated extensively in what became an avocation secondary to a vocation was better kept secret, lest you be branded “strange” and a “weirdo” and “something is off, just not quite right” and the worst label- “pretentious.”

I spent all that time preparing for my move to Los Angeles because I felt that I needed to be at the top of my game to compete in this city and when I get here I find out that I am working with people who could care less where you went to school, what you have learned or what you have studied, what you can actually bring to the table except, of course, what is expedient at hand.

In the LA poetry scene, the question is how long have you been active locally? Or how long have you hosted a particular venue? A poet could be the shittiest writer alive but if they have been active in the scene for 25 years and hosted some open mic at some coffeehouse for the last 10 of those years then they are venerated as the greatest living LA poet alive ever. And you have to play the game, you have to get in the queue and coo and caw over these venerated poets for a bit before you are even vaguely acknowledged by the cool kids. If you come in roaring and lay down the gauntlet and demand respect according to your writing ability, this will never work.

Case in point- I went to see the feature of another Puerto Rican poet once. She seemed very nice, went to an Ivy League school, got up and read poem after poem about race and political identity. I was happy. Then I introduced myself and spoke to her in Spanish, told her I was also from Puerto Rico and during the open mic I read a poem about my childhood “3 Facts for Mathilda.” Result? She was unhappy from the moment I introduced myself as another Puerto Rican poet and she has never talked to me again. Ever. And I’ve seen her several times at several poetry events. I smile and wave at her. She looks away.

Another case in point- I was at the Cobalt when this other poet gets up on stage and talks at length about attending the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. She talks about how hard the school was being a conservatory and all and how she consequently made her way through auditions to Los Angeles where she is now trying to make it as an actress. After her feature, I walk up to her and I tell her I too am a graduate from UNCSA (except at the time I graduated the school was only NCSA.) She had a hard time suppressing her incredulity. After asking me a few question to establish my bona fides, she changed the topic and never spoke to me about UNCSA ever again. This poet was friendlier than the Puerto Rican poet, at least this one accepted my friend’s request on Facebook, but whenever I tried bringing up her experiences at UNCSA it was like I was bringing up rotting dead babies in a ditch or something; she always made a distasteful face and refused to talk about school, even though we attended the same school ten years apart.

LA has a habit of forming their own poetry groups where they then give out their own poetry awards. This is really hilarious to me. Some poet makes up some group like “The Poets Who Say Snee” and then they have an open mic at some coffeehouse for a few years and then they put out an anthology of “The Snee Poets” and then if they build this up after a while they start giving out “The Snee Poetry Awards.” If you happen to point out that some of the Snee Poets are not very good, then you get shot down with a “What have you ever done for the community? Have you ever run your own Snee Poetry group for six years hmmm? No? Then shut the fuck up nobody cares about your opinion.”

Ok. I’m tired. I don’t know how to end this rant. I don’t know how to bring about a denouement. In my papers I found a photograph of a tomb whose headstone read, “Hitchcock.” This was not Alfred Hitchcock’s tomb, no, for he died in Beverly Hills and was cremated with his ashes scattered over the Pacific. This was some poor sap buried in Old Salem, in the Moravian cemetery, “God’s Acre,” about a mile from the film school.  I took a picture. I lost the picture. I found the picture 20 years later in a cobwebby banker‘s box. I then pinned the picture to a cork board in my kitchen.

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SENRYU SENRYU SENRYU

April is fun poetry month and, in the spirit, I asked my Facebook friends to send me some Senryu.  First let me provide a definition of Senryu.  From Wiki:

Senryū (川柳?, literally ‘river willow’) is a Japanese form of short poetry similar to haiku in construction: three lines with 17 or fewer total morae.   Senryū tend to be about human foibles while haiku tend to be about nature, and senryū are often cynical or darkly humorous while haiku are more serious. Unlike haiku, senryū do not include a kireji (cutting word), and do not generally include a kigo, or season word.

Ok so that Wiki description was a bit academic.  The short and sweet of Senryu is that Senryu is like a haiku but instead of focusing on regular “Nature” the poem focuses on “Human Nature.”

So without further ado, here are some Senryu my friends sent me:

ERIC LAWSON- Inglewood, CA

Driftwood bonfire flames
Keep my coffee fueled daydreams
Afloat for night owls

Her hair, once blonde hue
Now a shimmering brunette
Still reeks of henna

Oral fixation
is but a taste-tester’s perk
amidst free samples

FRANK MUNDO- Rancho Cucamonga, CA

Let’s order pizza
For our wedding reception
Said no gays ever

Bush and Chaney swore
The economy was sound
And fury followed

If you do not see
People in terms of color
You only see white

No one can erase
400 years of slave trade
Except Ben Affleck

STEVE GOLDBERG- Cleveland, OH

Vertical #1
Looking
Up
and
down
reading

forward
and
sideways

reveal
new
meanings

Vertical #2
Japan
writes
like
this.

We
twist
heads
to
read
our
way.

Eastern
wisdom
here.

Vertical #3
Mind
climbs
down
from
sky

lands
on
earthbound
meadow
brook

Mud
sucking
feet
home.

(My apologies to Steve.  I couldn’t format the poems the way he wanted them to cascade down on the page.  I tried for hours but WordPress was obstinate in denying me the technical skills to format the way the poems should look on the page.)

RICHARD MODIANO- Venice, CA

Sitting in the easy chair
No cat
In my lap

MANI SURI- Lake Balboa, CA

“Spring Night”

Hunger
One early spring night
Came I just lonely to her
And ravenously.

Joy
That early spring night
Came she on chargers divine
In utter delight.

Birth
Some early spring night
Look you to the stars above
Find our nebula.

KURT HARGAN- Santa Monica, CA

Creeping kitchen bugs
City streets full of people
Go and get the spray

Homeless cries and begs
His Oscar should go well with
His expensive shoes

I know you will think
This was written about you
Sides hurt with laughter

Next door speaking loud
Door open for us to hear
All their emptiness

Mower blows over
All his trimmings to our side
Tomorrow blown back

CHARLES CLAYMORE- Los Angeles, CA

Oh, I don’t know. Let
me think about it a bit.
I’ll get back to you.

Ah, I got nothing.
Would that it were otherwise
Another five beats.

Call for poetry!
I never know what to do.
Everybody writes.

ANGEL URIEL PERALES- Valley Village, CA

White skulls feed flora
in Aokigahara Forest,
my centipede smile.

Japanese stark
slices of life,
a tatami mat,
three balls of rice.

DEBORAH P. KOLODJI- Temple City, CA

empty bottle
of sunscreen
Black’s Beach

LA traffic
our lady of the perpetually
late

your sour face
I add pineapple
to my grapefruit juice

*lingerie drawer
after the divorce
skimpier

*first published in Japan in the Shichi-Go column in the Daily Yomiuri (8-10-2004), reprinted in the Winter 2005 issue of Simply Haiku, anthologized in “After Shocks:  The Poetry of Recovery” edited by Tom Lombardo, Santa Lucia Books, 2008.  Reprinted here with permission from the author.

TERRY MCCARTY- Canoga Park, CA

My Fisrt Senryu
three in the morning
watch film noir again
part of safe exciting life

DOUGLAS RICHARDSON- Los Angeles, CA

Pedro in the streets
fearing for his life
hip-hop anthems ring hollow

rest stops on a highway
everyone and no one
are going my way

MARIE LECRIVAIN- Los Angeles, CA

“Monsterpalooza 2014, Burbank, CA”

So many creatures
Jam up the halls
It’s a monster mash

werewolf, vampire,
and swamp thing,
the Three Musketeers

A young Vampira
glides past
24 inch waist

Sleestack
or Lovecraft candles
both shine darkly

“Do you sell
Hentai DVDs”
silence

Butch Patrick mobbed
for autographs still smiles
like Eddie Munster

inside every girl
resides
The Bride of Frankenstein

theremin waltz
in A minor prelude
to a ghostly encounter

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Apryl Skies – “a capella”

a cappella

there is a page I continue to turn to
where a southern pacific marine layer
dissipates over a valley horizon.

angels are imagined but fall hard
despite such hopeful wings.
there is eye contact over whiskey and wine,
a cappella rendition of song few have heard.

time releases a universal pause,
music is made, art adored and
poetry perceived in an empty glass
on a lacquered, oak wood bar.

he knows the exact shade of her eyes, she his
she is reminded of clouds
over the slow flame of Leonard Cohen,
the blue burn of Coltrane and Armstrong.

a thing of alchemy here in this darkened room,

absorbing the sunshine of each other’s bones.

———————

BIO:  Apryl Skies, an LA native, shares a birthday with Anaïs Nin, W.H. Auden and the emotive Nina Simone. She is an award-winning author of A Song Beneath Silence and Skye the Troll & Other Fairy Tales for Children. The latter, Skye the Troll has been adapted to clay animation, winning the 2010 Gold Pixie award by the American Pixel Academy. Skies is founder and editor of Edgar & Lenore’s Publishing House of Sherman Oaks and with several titles hitting the number one best-sellers list for Amazon, she is currently building solid momentum in the publishing industry. Skies expresses her devotion to the written & spoken word with a quiet intensity; a superbly visual and telling writer, whose work holds merit among authors both classic and new. Skies work has been published in the U.S., Ireland, Canada, Australia, U.K., Spain & France. Skies is currently studying Irish Gaelic, Italian and Spanish. Several of her poems have recently been translated into Spanish.

——————————————————


*Editor’s Notes:

Form is in the beauty is in the form.  A quick way to recognize and differentiate poetry from prose is in the change of conventions as learnt,  no capitalization, chosen punctuation, lines long enough for only a full breath of mental vocalization.  Also, a poet must craft with a delicate artistry, place specific words with X-acto knife pen precision.  On top of that, the poet must incorporate sound, meter, and thought into a flowing cadence of impacted meaning.  Apryl Skies weaves all these elements masterfully in the above poem.

First stanza establishes locale as inspiration and grabs the reader’s attention.  Second stanza elaborates while simultaneously condenses into specifics.  Poets please learn this technique as exemplified:  Elaboration is specification! We know where we are, we know what is happening, we are being inundated by feelings invoked.  Poetry rarely works as well as this.

Third stanza is about the memory made and the reason the scene is worth poetry.  This stanza is also a perfect transition into the significant intention for the writer.

Love, affection, connection, communicating with another human and letting the world know this human is important to me is, possibly, one of the most important functions of poetry.  Revealing what is hard to convey in a beautiful manner augments exponentially a writer’s depth of feeling.  The last two stanzas bring this point home.  The ending couplet being the indelible exclamation mark binding the writer to her subject and beautifully done.  Form is in the beauty is in the form.

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Finger Bitten by a Lizard

On one of my dying days of gardening, a common garter snake
crawled down my red mulberry bush. I was puzzled
by his beauty, his translucent amber head, underside celeste.
He sniffed the air with his tongue, headed towards me
as if eager to perish by my hands. I remembered a tango,

dancing with the other forked tongues and viper heads,
wearing towels over our shoulders like togas in the spas,
Palazzos San Francisco, circa ‘79, exquisite poses plastique
when the music would stop, when one of us would turn around,
the half-sliced fig caught lux in tenebris, darker shadows sfumato.
We vibrated to a deep bass rising up through the soles of our feet.

How so very polite, leave out the basket of fruit and the wine
for all the guests to imbibe. Tri-colored peaches with a tight
swinging cluster of grapes, seeds spill from a pomegranate split.
Apples blush, the sad one has a scar. But step closer and squinch.
Fungal spots spread over all the leaves. Insect eggs grow and, look,
one already burst, see the tiny spiders scatter all over the crown gall.

I lived with him you know, seven shortened years, my Caravaggio,
bouffant hair, plump lips, curly dark hair, slim hips, salvation
standing contrapposto against the broken columns as if announcing
“here I am, ecce homo!” His cobra sway was blinding, spellbinding
and his spit indeed venomous. I was drawn to him, spirit to light
languorous, Apollo Sauroctonos, shedding inhibitions like molting
of the skin. Spare, treacherous child, this thing creeping towards you.
Heed the Martial epigram. Watch where your fingers sink. Smirk
and snide and take a smiling bite out of the digitus impudicus.

Porcelain serpent paused, flickering, on the edge of sharpened hoe,
passed delicately over one podagric toe, past my patchwork plum
and violet ankles, then out of my garden. I do not understand this.
I once fell in love with a man who cried delirious when he died,
“I now go where the wizards go.” I did not understand this. St. John
in his Gospel wrote, “He was not that light, but was sent to bear
witness of that light,” and I understand this not.

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Umbra Mortis

Afflicted with this listless death,
I perform my arduous labors
like any other toilsome work,
drive defensively and
eat my $15 dollar dinners alone.
Wearisome days with a pinch of port,
forget to vacuum until the ceiling fan
begins to wobble loudly laden with dirt.

I’ll prick my finger tomorrow.
Abort another bruise, save
the contamination of a clean syringe.
Sleep fatigued after my 5 o’clock shit and
hope no telemarketers call my cell phone.

Yes, I am a patient of Dr. Nicholas Tulip.
Yes, my last doctor’s visit was January 16th.
No, I do not care to take a survey at this time.

Awake now and turn on the six thirty news.
A thousand injections needle into my right heel.
A thousand more cramp into my left arch.
Scratch my ankles, can’t feel my fingernails.
I watch Muslims kill other Muslims overseas.
A Mosalmán is killing others over in France and,
here at home, while I stare at my television walls,
my feet stage their own revolt, coup d‘état.

Eight physicians paid to be included in the painting.
They selected the hanged criminal to be dissected.
Two doctors focus their gaze directly on Rembrandt.
One poses and smiles as if he knows this will survive,
or maybe he displays ego, viewer can‘t tell. The other
doctor holds all of their names written on parchment
in his hand, the keeper of prestige, illustrious posterity.
The praelector himself holds his left in benediction
blessing his anatomy lesson, the manipulated tendons.

This winter was choking cold on the Bosphorus.
I hear ten million Muslims have crossed the Dardanelles
into the Aegean Sea. My own Theatrum Anatomicum
consists of my windshield or admiring these women
over my Dolce & Gabbanas. I can feel my sinister hand
contracting into a claw, feel my paroxysmal heartbeat,
my colic settling over my sight. I am afflicted with
an unstoppable creeping death and my skin blanches.

Ghastly Jisei,
I will wear my Totenkopfring
until my blood drains away.

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#JeSuisCharlie #JeSuisAhmed

Regardless where you fall in the political spectrum a troubling trend is beginning to appear in the media where the cartoons published by Charlie Hebdo are being focused on as a possible reason behind the terrorist attacks. Most of the pundits who are doing this begin their apologia something like this, “I abhor violence and think no justification exists for terror BUT when you look at the satire of Charlie Hebdo….”

Let us get one thing clear. Islam is a lie. Islam is a lie just as any other religion is a lie. Mohammed did not talk Allah. Allah does not exist. Allah is not the one and only god. Mohammed is not Allah’s only prophet. The prophet did not die and ascend to heaven on a winged chariot or a horse. The prophet did not split a rock with a touch. He did not split the moon.

People who believe these lies are delusional in their thinking and this delusion should be treated with savage mockery and disrespect. No site in Mecca is any holier than my own toilet. No submission to God exists. Sharia law is a sham. Sharia law does not supersede any other law instituted anywhere.

This extends to any religion which ignores reason, science, and secular human values for their own set of myths and superstitions. Jesus, if he even existed, is not the “son of god.” Moses did not talk to a burning bush. Abraham did not hear the voice of god commanding him to kill his only son, Isaac.

Sam Harris: “If you wake up tomorrow morning thinking that saying a few Latin words is going to turn them into the body of Elvis Presley, you have lost your mind. But if you think more or less the same thing about a cracker and the body of Jesus, you’re just a Catholic.”

Religion deserves no somber respect. No set of lies and made up stories has ever achieved any kind of deferential reverence and veneration such as delusional religious beliefs. If I were to say to you, for instance, “well, The Kwisatz Haderach is capable of accessing all ancestral memories and possesses organic mental powers that can bridge space and time” or “The Lisan al-Gaib is prophesied to one day come from outer space to transform this world into a more peaceful world” then you would be, in all likelihood, what are you talking about? If I were to give you the book of Dune, written by Frank Herbert, and tell you solemnly that this is my holy book and that Herbert‘s words were directly revealed to him by the one and only Reverend Mother, then I have no right to be offended if you laugh at me and turn around and throw the book in the trash.

Hell does not exist. No afterlife exists. Jihad is violence in the name of power, not in the name of any god. No virgins await in paradise. Heaven is a made up place. I have no duty to seriously consider and defer to any claims of heaven or morals or the afterlife of any religion or of any of the three Abrahamic religions specifically.

In fact, I retain EVERY right to mock faith and point out inconsistencies and contradictions and resist fantasy at every opportunity. I have the right to drown out the voices of the street preachers with savage ridicule and contempt and with a mega horn if I so choose. If you are of an attitude of “Charlie Hebdo mocked and satirized my religion so maybe they brought this on themselves” then forget you, no, YOU brought mockery and satirization upon yourself when you persisted in believing in bronze age superstitions and myths handed down by illiterate goat herders.

How weak is your faith that you must persecute and kill those who make fun of your religion? Is your God that much of a paper tiger? People make fun of me all the time, for my appearance, for my voice, for any number of reason and I don’t declare a Jihad on them. How weak is your prophet that he needs YOU to defend or avenge him? Forget Mohammed if he can’t take a joke. Forget Jesus nailed up on the cross. Forget Moses and his harelip. “Hey Peter!” “What Master?” “I can see your house from here!” Forget you Peter, I hope you pissed on your own face when the Romans hung you upside down and put a fire under your head.

Cabu, the brilliant cartoonist and painter, was killed in the attack on Charlie Hebdo. The man was also an animator and a spot on political satirist on par with Gary Trudeau. Cabu had an only son, Mano Solo, who died almost 4 years ago to the date because of HIV complications. Mano was a haunting and beautiful singer/songwriter. I can imagine Cabu mourning the loss of his son and oblivious to the fact that religious forces would soon conspire against the ending of his own life.

Here is an unforgettable song by Mano Solo, I post this song in remembrance and in support of the victims of the Charlie Hebdo newspaper massacre:

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Point Blank Supernova

The Sun expanded into a huge giant red star
and pulverized the Earth whole into dust.
Jupiter drifted away and pulled
most of the known asteroids out of orbit.
We are all floundering out of orbit.

Rachel raced north next to the ICW
towards her favorite spot on Pompano Beach,
the place with the green peeling picnic table
and the marram grass scattered
all the way down to the brackish water.
She first made love lost amongst the sand dunes.
She lost her one true love somewhere in the dunes.

Charlie thought the invitation of a last meal
very fitting. Jesus Christ and the disciples
breaking bread above his father’s chair
at the far end of the table, Brussels sprouts
with bacon, Charlie got drunk
and offered a drunk toast to his old man,
may his old ghost burn eternally in hell,
and if not, if hell is but another one
of his elaborate lies, don’t know why
mother committed suicide, yeah right,
can’t pay another cent for college
because of the market crash, well then,
may his spirit alight ablaze
with the swelling of the Earth.

Rachel felt her hands floating
above the steering wheel
and she had to stop the car.
She made one last teary eyed call.
Her last day became gradually bright,
gradually light and then she stepped out.
One salmon colored espadrille was found
under the skid marks of the shuddering big rig.
The other still had the pineapple stitching intact.

On his way out through the garage,
Charlie thought fuck this and slit
three bags of fertilizer and threw
them in the pool. As the manure
settled and sank, he kicked over
a can of diesel, a can of unleaded
all around the Lexus, lit up a spliff
and walked back into the house
to finish off his Brussels sprouts
(with bacon) and to spread
marmalade on Wonder Bread.

On the day of the Apocalypse,
I was distracted at the drive-through,
paid for my meal, drove away,
then noticed my receipt.
Back inside the Mickey-D’s,
I asked why I was charged $6.88
for breakfast #4, which only costs $5.62.
“All the prices changed this morning.”
“Alright, but still, not how this works,
a customer only pays what is on the sign.”
“I know, I’m sorry, I understand.”
And as I walked out counting my
dollar twenty six
some dark shadow pointed
right at me
a shiny metallic stick.

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