a loneliness grave.

I spared him a quarter

alone where he stood

next to the Madonna

as if she’d do him good.

He gave me a blessing

gentle and aware

the wind it was violent

messing both our hair.

While Girl Scouts are selling

cookies for the troop

a week ago maybe

someone died on that stoop.

But don’t tell their mothers

as if they would care

no you don’t get the badge unless

you’ve sold your soul there.

My eyes they grow weary

still I can’t look away

at the hummingbird dancing

a loneliness grave,

still I’ve got this feeling

that there’s no escape

am I ok to drive? I guess or else just look away.

Am I ok to drive? I guess, if not well either way.

At the cafe I buy coffee

either iced or cold brew

the barista he tells me

nothing’s ever new.

But still I ask questions

like how do you do

and she recalls my name

it’s the least she could do.

I don’t mean to sound faithless

I’ve just seen enough kicks

see the old man he died, well

some things never make sense.

It’s slight of the hand, it’s

a scam with three cups

you follow the ball then

it’s gone where it was.

My eyes they burn red with

the heat of the day

it’s winter in Burbank

what more can I say,

still I’ve got this feeling

that there’s no escape

am I ok to drive? I guess or else just look away.

Am I ok to drive? I guess, if not well either way.

Now I take to the bar, where

Happy Hour’s till 6

Scott the tender he knows me

pours my whiskey then gin.

What’s the good word? Pal, tell me

do you think that you could

spare me knowledge like change would

do me some type of good.

I don’t stay past the hour

happiness never lasts

after shame there comes flowers

then of course there’s the past.

You’re a good guy he tells me

see the pain never lasts

I assure you it does, Scott

he just nods then he laughs.

See there’s beauty in living

it’s just hidden by stars

who illuminate sidewalks

like two subtle hearts,

still I’ve got this feeling

that there’s no escape

it’s an obvious cycle, one I’ll never break.(?)

Am I ok to drive? I guess or else just look away.

Am I ok to drive? I guess, if not well either way.

die a King in your fantasy.

I don’t want to be a burden

I just wanna sit here and read.

So if that’s ok

then the band can play

I’ll look up a couple times to see.

Everyone who’s silently cursing

checking out the latest feed.

There’s someone I knew

from another life

I look away so they don’t notice me.

It’s a living, a hard living

the barista says while pouring cream

a couple swirls and a twist

now there’s a swan swimming in my drink.

Guess I never really felt like drowning

I just swam in this misery.

I guess I can’t complain

I made my bed

skipped my prayers

now I’m counting sheep.

Guess I never really felt like dying

just romanticized how life could be

it’s like a game of chess

you protect the Queen

and die a King in your fantasy.

Cause it’s a living, a hard living

it could be worse is a common phrase

a couple riffs then applause

now the band packs their noise and leaves.

If I have to take a vow of silence

plead the fifth in double time.

With all due respect

I think I must confess

I cracked up like a nursery rhyme.

Still I can’t sing that song without crying

so whatever shall be shall be.

I guess the world’s the same

rinse repeat complain

the punch line never hit with me.

So if you’re living, a hard living

here’s raising this glass to you

and if you’re worried, don’t worry

there’s bound to be an answer soon.

Cause baby I don’t wanna be a burden

I just want to write my poetry.

Because I’m not a rock

or an island but

ain’t that the only way to be free.