To My Uncle Kyle


You swore to me that God was a martyr
as you beckoned me up those concrete steps
I imagine there were bells gonging nearby
but I’m sure that isn’t true

your suitcoat was a perfect cut against the noon sun
and you smiled like you always did
with arms outstretched while I stood on one foot
in parody

I appreciated the sentiment as the other cars arrived
and everone else was crying while you and I
just winked and smiled in to our collars
but martyrs never bring anybody back
I whispered

I imagine bells were ringing
but I’m sure that isn’t true

God is Calling


The backlight is lit and flashing.
The phone is rattling in my hand.
But I wonder if I will answer?

I see him in a hole in my sock.
His peach-colored handiwork swirls
Peek out into a fabric-less world
Where my footprint is his fingerprint.

The words you have said—
I am the door
I am the living bread
I am the light of the world
I am the good shepherd
I am the resurrection
I am the true vine
I am the way
I am the truth
I am the life
I am Jesus

—can I believe that?
Why have you made such a fragile me?

I’m masquerading false humility.
What good is it?
If I got turned inside out
And saw the way I really am
What would I think of me then?

Not intestines, entrails and organs.
But abstractions and presumptions.
I am dead while I breath.
This is fodder to feed my fears
And proof that problems
Never go away by ignoring them.

Hello? I say.
It’s me, he says.
I know.

in cairo


in cairo they throw
rocks in the streets
and are stacking bodies
to rig the death count
to get the air time
and off the cement bullets
ricochet with the words
allah akhbar
young men hurl themselves
towards the crackling streets
looking up at red sky
hoping today is the day
and i hope there is something
for them there
i hope they get lifted off
the streets of cairo in some
bright, elegent light
and horns will play heavenly tunes
while their brothers
pose for the camera
screaming “allah akhbar”
and loosely bandage
the marytrd wounded
with his eyes glazing over
i hope he is floating with
the virgins and his dead
relatives in peaceful content
and there are no stones to throw
and you will not have to say
and they will write your name among
the dead with an emphasis and
the young souls will look to yours
in awe and say “I want to
go his way:
on a street-corner
for the cameras
as a hail-mary pass.”

Why me, God?


Why me, God?
Why do you always do this?
Every. Single. Time.
I don’t get it.
Of all the other people, why me?
It’s ridiculous.
Over and over and over again it happens.
It’s always full throttle forward,
Why can’t I get a break?
What did I ever do to deserve this?
Why me, God?
Why did you pick me?
Why did you choose to save me?
To infinitely bless me?
To give me so much?
There’s so many more deserving,
Yet I’m the recipient.
It’s not fair.
Why me, God?
Why do you always do this to me?

do not associate the focus of this poem with any type of pre-existing ideal or concept that exists within your brain unless, of course, you’re right


you have shown me how
to get things done
you have shown me what
emotions can do
i have seen how you let
random entities bounce
chaotically off of each-other
for eternity

you have shown me how
i can be fooled
i have witnessed the steadfast
nature of your creations and
i have listened to old men
old men who really had it;
i listened and understood

i have seen men beating
their heads against walls
until they bled out into the
i have seen how little
communication exists between
i have heard how much
you have to say–
i have listened when i could,
i am afraid i have not understood
i am also afraid that there is not
much to understand

i cannot tell you how life is
across the universe
but i can hazard a guess that
will come very close

i can still not understand people,
i cannot believe;
which is why i cannot understand
or much of what you say,
however loud you say it

i can never let the ink dry
before i throw away today’s
because i wake up with the sun
and see it erase the meaning
of all that i had imagined that
very day with it’s waning
over the horizon like white-out
over a dissertation written by
who, collectively, is unsure
when exactly the paper is due.

a little about you – with some help from a old family friend we called websters but whose real name also included a merriam


you are exalted or worthy of complete
devotion as one perfect in goodness and righteousness
of, relating to, or proceeding directly from God
you are having great power, prestige, or influence
you are great in deed or exalted in place
you are marked by stately grandeur and lavishness
and exceptionally superior in kind, quality, or appearance

Don’t Pretend


I don’t pretend
To pretend I know
Where I’m headed
Or need to go
If I live life too fast
Or live too slow
I don’t pretend
To pretend I know
All these thoughts
That come and go
If I live for today
Or for years ago
I don’t pretend
To pretend I know
What seeds to plant
Or seeds to sow
And once they are
If they’ll grow
I don’t pretend
To pretend I know
How or when
Harsh winds will blow
What I should keep
And what to throw
I don’t pretend
To pretend I know
But this is true
Yes, this is so
It is through God
Who all things flow

when the fairy dust has settled


i marked the
inauguration with
feelings of trepidation

let’s remember that
“change” is not a magic
word made of sparkles
and dust, rather one
spelled with sleepless
nights, burning words,
and blood

let’s remember that
the “Dream” is not
a finish line to be
crossed, rather a reality
we must construct
first in our minds and in
our lives

and let’s remember that
our leaders cannot be God
sweeping down from the clouds
(or the White House) to pluck
you from your own troubles.

The Bus


Don’t look my way

It’s too early in the day,

Your soul is not tucked in yet.

Romeo coughs at the back of the bus

Here comes tuberculosis.

An old Juliet shouts repeatedly to herself

“Shut up! Yes God I know. I know. Shut up!”

Dorian, the unaltered beauty, sneers

Give the lepers their bells back

So they can sing their melody again:

“Unclean, unclean, unclean…”

Jane scratches her invisibility cloak

blood under her fingernail is the same

ghastly red as the “Stop requested” sign.

The metallic box spits two people out

While Tarzan bites his nails thinking

“I hate my mother. Does it me make evil?”

Inside the bus, one happy thought lingers,

“At least I’m not suicidal…”

And outside, it’s better to hate God than your mother

Otherwise, you better have tales that would make God vomit

and reconsider his creation.

The Odyssey For My Self


How I try to perceive you
How deep down must I look
How long must I search for you
How treacherous are the waters that I must cross
How many calls must I make
Of joy and love
Of sadness and fear
Before you hearken to my words
How may I examine myself
Without an inner eye through which to look
How many errors must be made
Before one can tear down their guise
How many breaths of air will I take
Before I breathe in you
How many mornings shall I awake
Before I know the name of you
What is a heart without a voice
What is a mind without a soul
What is a body without an essence
What is a man without a goal
How much pain must I suffer
Of myself and this earthly plane
How much fear must I survive
Before the judgment of our name
How many triumphs must I take
And walk away with tears for the defeated
How many defeats must I claim as my own
And still gait away with dignity
You are the essence of my being
You are the thought that makes me real
You are the desires of the heart
You are the ghost within my shell

Love Letter


I love you-Goodbye.

I’ll always remember you-inside.

Of Mind, Body, and Soul-like the rest,

Mind and Soul I’ll remember-of you the best.

I’ll always know you were the love of my life

Through the sickness, the pain, and all the strife.

Saying goodbye was the hardest thing I hope to ever do,

I could only wish that it wasn’t to you.

For you raised me lovestrong.

Now I wish I could say-God’s will is wrong,

But faith in HIS plan is right,

Whether you do or don’t-survive the night

Mother, I love you-Goodbye