DAVID BARTONE


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
CONTACT JOHNNY

Where the word contact kills me

I thumb back over my list.

All crazinesses are non-linear

in their touchdown psychosis.

The lost have their own grace.

—Return office key.

—Contact Johnny.

The graces of the kitchen aisle

causing a fit

of laughter. The self-loathe

I can’t fit a laugh into.

What else can sing dead symbols,

give rise to the mouth?

What else has the mind loosened

of late April?

Me here unravels with the whip

the thing that compels.

—Do not buy a thing.

And the blank ripeness of shopping

opens the palms

the way a mind would have you move.

A picnic blanket on one hand

for an imaginary lover I hold;

thinking of happiness

for an hour or two, on the other.
 
 
 
 
NOCTURNE IN FLESH

I heaps a need.

The manuscript a mess

I has sculpted.

I has sculpted this mess

and it’s a broke bone in birdland.

I has else a thought to wander

wonders about the out of doors

as first to reckon the window open

and hopes for breeze.

I aches a necessary order: hence

mess. I sometimes drowns a joy

but not in ice,

how hot water to a seedling

if not kills

causes bacterial damping off,

and I doesn’t talk to the plantlings

any more than the cat

does. The neighbors weren’t home

and so last night I gibbous milk moon

laid down in the garden bed

and masturbated to fast cloud movement.

I pictures the you that wants

shame. I pictures the you

that doesn’t.
 
 
 
 



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