my gown


look beyond my dark thick gown
be strong and courageous
God is all around me
but you must look past my heavy gown
my light my freedom never closes
for i am not a door without a knob
look beyond my cowebbed gown
but make sure that you clasp your thoughts hand
you will need them for this journey
take time and show me that you are opening a window breathe liberation in
when the threads and seams of my tightly stitched sleeves imprison you
open your heart and push on through
the light is closer than it seems
there will be times when you’ll get lost amongst the blackest gauze of my deceptive petticoats
you will ache cry curse moan writhe in madness
dont be afraid to use the sharpness of righteous diligence to cut on through
don’t be afraid of my gown
within it lay your wings

after the X show

the soft cool feather strokes of breeze fingered through my shaggy tangled hair teasing out a kaleidoscope of red highlights

the muddy booted covered feet carried my dirty denim wrapped carcass through the termite riddled door into his wool upholstered army cot where he kept 3 golf clubs

we kissed wildly like two beasts on the savannah interlocked in that battle to the death right before they cut to the Mutual of Omaha commercial

love i wondered as he pawed at me what was it while his teeth searched for my young girl bits

it wasn’t like the movies nor was there flirtation or sexy anticipation like in Bei Mir Bistu Shein

then he stopped my eyes still closed and my tongue lapping in the dark

i need a cigarette he whispered can i bum one i rasped

what is love do you think i dealt out my rhetorical grunts

an almost neon silhouette of his broad shoulders shrugged against the poker faced moon

in regards to Foghat

At 21, I didn’t know two things; how I got through 4 years of college and who played “Slow Ride.” But grunge was growing on me and I still had Miles and Monk, maybe a little Ginger Baker in between.

I also didn’t know what to do other than just ‘party.’ Code for self medicating and wasting life away on account of being lost in the City of Angels.

I was of the streets; my family had good bones, some education, jobs, the normal shit. I didn’t, however we were all lost together but galaxies apart.

I’d walk listening to the organically mechanical jazz of the city. Notes of deep blue pain, orange notes of sorrow, pink notes of hope and black atomic scary love oozing out of the trumpets heralding our demise. Us, all walks of life, us in that beautifully grotesque melting pot of angst.

Needless to say the bad crowd fell into me. I was high functioning, a sweetheart, and functioning high. My world was slow motion in a fast velocity world. Things came seemingly easy. I could crash at the Cecil, I was a regular at King Eddie’s, where everyone didn’t care.

I raised clenched fists, joined the movements in all languages, I was smart. I read, dissected, recollected and debated. Painted, sculpted, drank it and smoked it.

At 22 I started to suspect that in all of my boundlessness I was deeply ensnared in something I had lost sight and perspective of long, long ago. Slow ride. Taken roughly and fast, fast, fast. There was this pain, a loneliness tangled up with self loathing. I had failed. It was complicated. I wanted it to be a dream, but it wasn’t. Like the rest of my human kin I wanted to feel, but I was a coward. Defeat was a drag and at times I thought if I climb down from that upside down cross it could turn very ugly. Rage they called it. I called it ‘why did they.’ I might be able to utter it someday.

It would be two years before grad school. Two years of mayhem. I like the way that sounds. It’s cool. The reality of it is pathetic and sad.

I continually looked for the Fibonacci sequence in their eyes; for reason, for answers to questions I had no idea about. In my life, meaning had lost itself particularly when roles had to be played well to keep up appearances.

Perhaps that’s why I loved the Cecil, the humanity between its walls. The smells, the dust, filth, cheap glamour, the innovation and the sheer will to survive. These where the substances of the gods. In the sterile houses in the hills nothing clung but spiritual death. Their emptiness was empty for empty’s sake. At the Cecil we had been gutted at different points in our lives so all we could do was gasp. And sometimes sing ourselves to sleep. The ride was slow at first then my wheels fell off.

my way…

at 21 i didn’t know two things how i got through 4 years of college and who played “Slow Ride” but grunge was growing on me and i still had Miles and Monk maybe a little Ginger Baker in between

i also didn’t know what to do other than just ‘party’ code for self medicating and wasting life away on account of being lost in the City of Angels

i was of the streets my family had good bones some education jobs the normal shit i didn’t however we were all lost together but galaxies apart

i’d walk listening to the organically mechanical jazz of the city notes of deep blue pain orange notes of sorrow pink notes of hope and black atomic scary love oozing out of the trumpets heralding our demise us all walks of life us in that beautifully grotesque melting pot of angst

needless to say the bad crowed fell into me i was high functioning a sweetheart and functioning high my world was slow motion in a fast velocity world things came seemingly easy i could crash at the Cecil i was a regular at King Eddie’s where everyone didn’t care

i raised clenched fists joined the movements in all languages i was smart i read dissected recollected and debated painted sculpted drank it and smoked it

at 22 i started to suspect that in all of my boundlessness i was deeply ensnared in something i had lost sight and perspective of long long ago slow ride taken roughly and fast fast fast there was this pain a loneliness tangled up with self loathing i had failed it was complicated i wanted it to be a dream but it wasn’t like the rest of my human kin i wanted to feel but i was a coward defeat was a drag and at times i thought if i climb down from that upside down cross it could turn very ugly rage they called it i called it ‘why did they’ i might be able to utter it someday

it would be two years before grad school two years of mayhem i like the way that sounds it’s cool the reality of it is pathetic and sad

i continually looked for the Fibonacci sequence in their eyes for reason for answers to questions i had no idea about in my life meaning had lost itself particularly when roles had to be played well to keep up appearances

perhaps that’s why i loved the Cecil the humanity between its walls the smells the dust filth cheap glamour the innovation and the sheer will to survive these where the substances of the gods in the sterile houses in the hills nothing clung but spiritual death their emptiness was empty for empty’s sake at the Cecil we had been gutted at different points in our lives so all we could do was gasp and sometimes sing ourselves to sleep the ride was slow at first then my wheels fell off

rouge

hot rhythm

pulses my middle

heat kisses my begging thighs

lava tongue spinning salacious

rivers of lust along my woman valley and into the navel of my heart

thank you

pin head rain drops fall the slugs arise from slumber

my steps uneven ballerina slippers getting soggy

but somehow it’s ok my world isn’t asunder

there it is my favorite corner French iron wrought patio furniture and a mural of Mexican bolsheviks on the wall

stepping up to the bar she smiles awake and wide product of the prozac nation landslide

triple espresso red eye no room for anything

thanks are in order i bless her heart with crooked sinful fingers i tip her jar

a chair is chosen for me the usher mysterious and melancholy lures me next to him

he scoots over cigarette stink on his beard but he smiles despite his need to be left alone

i sip ladylike against my physical appearance a contrast in being

he turns his face to me glimmers in him golden eyes tilting his face i notice the wrinkles around his mouth wondering why my eyes have no glimmers

he sips the coffee sliding down his throat a barely there inaudible gulp he pardons himself

as the majesty that he has made me i accept his kind regret and we sit quietly in the eclectic cafe being alone together

64

mbrazfield (c) 2020

cowboy Earl

gold tooth black Stetson hat

a shitload of loitering tickets and pink assless chaps

he was from Mississippi grew up on bad land

menfolk took his innocence his momma shot herself

we both sit by the parrot tree looking cross the street at the hipsters in the street meat taco line

as if he’d quip every now and again

how’d you become a cowboy Earl

that’s a personal question Grady

cool i’d say passing the Batman portable bong his way

lava rocks

first the beers

then the hard stuff

then snow

she said good God don’t you feel alive

i moved my face down

my eyes look up

grimace at the stars

smoke invades my ratted hair

miss my cat she said

his name was butterfly

got killed by coyotes in the west hills

don’t you miss your cat

silence

then a nod

a snort

and a pop

i don’t have pets

i’m not responsible enough

brown eyes tears up

cheeks scarlet

my parents hate me

i’ve been such a huge problem

i saw yellow rose buds in the therapy room she heaved

they want to put me on depakote i said

my nose bled a little

why

i flipped my daddy’s car

on the 10 heading east

oh

then she swallows loudly

malt liquor spills out

from the corners of her cold sore covered mouth

but i dig it here i say

i’m thankful for the cool scars i caress and stretch my arm

and that i am aware of my self destruction i guess

sounds like you’re winning the battle she says

my face falls

under my breath

reaching for another cigarette

i hear the boots coming to seek us out

we know the routine

our tiny back packs get buried under the decorative lava rocks

flown

time sits condensed like grandpa’s old Valvoline tucked under the back porch steps

i’ve flown away from my soul this morning before the hummingbird came to mourn

the landing will happen later today when Ursula preps her beet salad i think that’s when it will happen

nodding trailing sinking from the surface tadpoles file in and soon enough will leap with a part of me

there i am i will paint now i can’t catch myself but there’s a little blue pain that aches to be laid out on rice paper from the kitchen drawer

patience

with warm scarlet tears

she sits sometimes she glances

rosebuds slowly yawn