The off-days

It’s not the job that does a man in

but the off-days,

when he’s got the time

but still can’t find the reason.

Self Destruction

It takes many self destructions

for a man to realize

there is nothing so meaningless

as to destroy what he has yet to understand.

In the presence of family, be only with family.

In the presence of family,

be only with family.

Put aside the work and worry.

It’ll be there when you part.

And enjoy one another

as if each member of your family

were a dish at the dinner table.

Fill yourself with their essence.

Allow them like nutrients

to replenish your mind, body, and soul

so that when you leave one another

you’ll do so knowing

their presence is with you

for better or worse, forever and onward—

second star to the right and straight on till morning.

Family Gathering, 2012

When I was a kid—after bedtime—as quietly as I could, I would crawl from my bed, onto the floor, then elbow and knee my way down the hallway to lay in the doorway of my brothers room…

When I was a kid—after bedtime—as quietly as I could, I would crawl from my bed, onto the floor, then elbow and knee my way down the hallway to lay in the doorway of my brothers room to watch his television.

He’s four years older than I am and, well, I thought he was really cool.

One, for having a TV in his bedroom. And two, for probably knowing I was there but not saying anything.

Whatever he was watching didn’t really make a difference but it was comfortable there, on the carpet, with the blue light flashing.

A dark bedroom can be pretty scary to a child, especially during a thunderstorm.

Now that we’re older, we speak when it is necessary, but not all the time.

Probably less than either of us cares to admit.

He’s a busy working husband and parent while I’m pretty much all over the map.

Though when we do talk, it’s a meaningful talk of mutual reflection. He provides me with information from four years down the line and I remind him that I’m listening by offering whatever small insights are on my mind.

I thought he was great then and I still do now. No matter the distance the bond between two brothers is strong and unwavering.

Basically what I am saying is I look forward to the next time we’re able to watch a little TV, crack a couple jokes, and just hang out—without any pressure—even if it means the carpet or floor, that’ll be enough.

The Sweatpants King And His Little Brother

In my neighborhood

Every muffler

Firework

SNAP-CRACKLE-POP

people assume is a gun shot.

I know why they imagine this

but I just can’t believe it myself, because

the men and women I see,

whose culture, features, religion

may differ from my own,

are hard working families.

And where I’ve still got fingers,

they’ve only bone.

Winnetka California 2020

My work it shall begin

We are safe because we want to feel safe

And afraid because we allow ourselves to fear

All throughout the life I’ve know I’ve accepted what was

Hardly ever asking myself the real question, that is

What exactly do you want to be

Do you want to be loved? Feared? Saved?

Am I making myself clear?

Like standing by the railing of a ferry boat adrift

Looking out into the fog of early mornings spent

Nervous though I was, a child full of dread

Patiently awaiting the comfort darkness fed

Full of all my longings, too scared to make a sound

Reeling for the guidance, waiting to be found

But it wasn’t until I spoke the words

Which have placed me here today

And I wouldn’t place the blame where there is nothing left to blame

I could have got out long before that house we knew burnt down

I could have run away, what’s more

I could have made a sound

Though fear and faith are binding

For a child guilt is hard

And safety commonly looks like

A smile from afar

But now I’m counting crows, who’ve eaten all the crumbs

And as for beanstalks stalking, I’ve cut down every one

To grandma’s house goes Red, she no longer has to run

The piglets in their cabin, I hear they’re having fun

Released into the willows are fairytales Grimm

Now safe my inner child’s sound

My work it shall begin

The man in me knows something gold can stay

It’s an early morning wake up(wake up)

Adjust your hair put on your makeup(makeup)

It’s just a temporary state but(state but)

Either way you’ve got to make up(make up)

For all the time that you pissed away

For every second mistake you made

For every little indiscretion

For all the time you failed to mention

I love you so much my stomach burns

I love you so much that I’m lost for words

I love you so much see my eyes are pure

So stick around and we can make this work

You formed this feeling in Long Island(I land)

On my back and watch the world spin(world spin)

Back and forth in all direction(directions)

They only form a brief connection(except when)

The one’s you love turn from gold to grey

Tell Johnny Frost said nothing gold can stay

I do my best to find another way

The way I work is slow but baby hey

I love you so much I get dizzy spells

I love you so much you’re my wishing well

I love you so much now I’m overwhelmed

I love you so much you’re my homeward bound

Your eyes are healing now I’m lost for words

So stick around let’s watch the season’s turn

I’m slow with change but baby I’ve got faith

This fire burns you are my great escape

The man you met knows there’s a better way

The man in me knows something gold can stay

a bad artist

At the end of the day

when my feet are sore

when my mind is heavy

and I can’t take anymore.

Playing with matches I paint.

I paint such beautiful pictures

in my heart that burns

which no one can see

because I’m no painter

I’m just a bad artist

fingering napalm.

A Common Conundrum

There
is a
brief
window
as a kid
where
they
don’t know
about

overtime
morning commute
time and a half
cut hours

nor should they,

because
they’re kids,
kids who need to let the adults speak
you tell them all the time

so
when
the kid’s
all grown up
and wants nothing to do with you
don’t forget
all
those
times
the kid
just wanted to play.