I have to play catch up as the events accumulate and clog up the hourglass.

My ears are playing that game where you can swear you just heard something only to turn and find empty air; the most barely audible of buzzing bass lines, so inescapably loud just a section of hours ago, taunts my ears with the dim recollections of darkened living rooms washed in the neon blues and greens of synth punk. Of glitched out footage switching the focus over to keyboards bewitching the casual observer with minor chords.

My hips are still in full sway from the pull of fuzzing speakers reaching hands out and firmly manipulating my body in to movement.

My ass... is bruised.

But now there is rain, in rivulets streaming, and beer. Food.

Mixed moods.


Chicken 'n Beer

Television on sports channels, no sound.
Staccato clack of balls into pockets;
pool sticks in the rack.
Neon promo lights flicker in
and out like ominous stars.

Soon the scales will tip again.
I will double check the numbers.
Soon the scales will empty into glass;
I will emerge, all the dumber.
Consuming; perfuming.

Is it Joe the Plumber or
the promise of perpetual summer
that shirks my to-do lists and stunts
my growth as potential up-and-comer?

Boy howdy, I tell ya.
It’s no wonder that my brain insists
on shackles round ankles and wrists.
Upward mobility, in this bar, does not exist.



“Would you accept it like a torch?”

I would, and light my way
through caverns dark and deep.
I would, and know this tiny lighter’s flame
can’t keep me from bumbling
through paths, self-same,
that I have tried again and over
to refrain from striding down.

I would accept it like a torch,
holding still until the glow unstows no certainty
and charred bitter ends leave darkness
blackening my fingertips –
and then I’d, after wiping ashen fingers
on my apron’s hips,
reach a digit out to mark your bottom lip.

I would accept it if you told me to,
Pausing not for chivalry
Or wasting breath to ask –


The Faces: Airbender

Jokes typed into text boxes are read by the very figure of delicate masculinity,
hips cocked and screen-finger flashing. Lips curved in constant disdain convert
to wild happiness in the click of an instant.
A picture of teenage beauty, extended for a year or two… or four. 
Indefinitely. Sparking lighters and touching flame to the greatest of all peacemakers, 
inhaling just to tell the realm of adult responsibilities to “fuck off, cunt!”

You flip burgers in dirty uniform shirts, 
wearing circles of fryer grease like the spots of a much more predatory creature, 
sneaking seconds to check your ever constant flow of communication.

Texts, and tumbles, and invites for casual awkward bumbles in the form of a young gay fuck – 
it’s a secret you keep that you are shy and you are picky; that you are innocent beyond your aura.
Your love is locked up tight. Your love would have to deal with daily weed habits and shifting moods;
irregular schedules, late night anime, and a posse of chunky badass bitches. 
Long stretches of silence.

It is difficult indeed to be someone who is very on and very off;
more difficult to find the type who can find a way to love a duality.

So for now you have a tribe. 
You have no trouble sleeping on couches tucked away in a friend’s apartment, 
washing dishes for your board, fishing work shirts from a pile on the floor.
This is what your twenties are for, with your car sitting dead downstairs in the parking lot. 
This is how you conveniently ignore the glaring lack of future plans, 
or even plans for matters that need immediate attention. 
As long as you’ve got the next ride to work and a one-hitter in your pocket, it’s straight. It’s alright.
It’s all good and it’s about time to turn the damn song up and drive a little faster.



The Faces: Noréti

         The glinting black of smooth ceramic reminds me of bright koi skins darting under darkened waters. The reflection of light from the hallways, bouncing off the keys left swinging in the doorknob, make the coffee mug stand out even in the shade of your unlit office. My eyes are drawn to the handle, shaped like a handgun, and I smile. It makes sense that a person like you would have a coffee mug shaped like weaponry, stealthily pulling the trigger on artificial energy; morning sales calls; webinars. A man of intrigue, cultured and confident, in the confines of a CRV. Yeah, it makes sense to me.

         I savor the silence in here when I sneak in, and I wonder again if you keep the espresso machine locked up in here just to give me a reason to come in. I know that’s a little self-important of me but it’s a nice thought, the kind that warms me a bit. I entertain the idea that you are actively manipulating me on a psychological level and that I am in the hands of your plans every time I grab the keys off of the wall hook and grant myself entrance to your stronghold. Your office used to be storage but now it is very much a stronghold,  still storage for the expensive construction equipment you peddle but now also a place of comfort. You have made it yours. I wait as the machine heats up water and grinds beans, and appreciate the fact that you are the type to make an office yours. I enjoy the knowledge that you chose the red serving trays that are carefully arranged on the table, and I enjoy the image of your hands neatly placing the accoutrements for the perfect cup of coffee into each compartment. Splenda, sugar, spoons and cream. Organic local coffee beans.

         I enjoy your office the most because of the unexpected details. You are a brash salesperson, loud and in charge, boasting about weekend golf scores and chiding weaker players; you carry Coach bags and talk about James Bond in a tone of voice reserved for the revered and beatified. Yet the sandwiches you make me, deli mustard and sweet pickles toasted with salami on pumpernickel, tell a different story. The portrait on the wall of an Egyptian queen, decked in royal blues and golds, hangs proudly – painted by your mother. The gilt-edged stamp in a language I dimly recognize – the capitalized ‘Magyar’ affirming my hypothesis – brought back from travels abroad. You are everything I would normally mock and dismiss and I assumed instantly that we would never have any common ground when you first moved into my building... but there are parts of your story that are told for you, the parts that flesh out a character. The parts that make you a real person that I could have a conversation with. A ticket stub to Carmina Burana at the Seattle Symphony. The hand drawn caduceus that your wife painted when she graduated medical school. The tea cup, your grandmother’s, that you actually drink your coffee from.

I brought in a coffee mug of my own to rival yours after you ridiculed me one day for drinking from Styrofoam cups.

“It tastes better when there’s history involved,” you said matter of factly, holding your saucer in one hand and tiny steaming tea cup in the other. “Be a grownup and bring a mug.”

If I were the type to believe in symbols I would raise my eyebrows at the framed stamp.
If I were the type to believe in coincidence, I would take my Hungarian grandmother’s wildflower-painted stoneware mug and walk back to my office.

If I were the type to believe nothing and entertain all I would carefully swing the door closed and slowly back down the hallway, balancing my mug with an equal ponderous grace, sitting at my desk with a peaceful bewilderment.