Tuesday, July 21, 2009


the first shot of the night
I put it back
and wince weakly
it is like the feeling you get
at the movie theatre
when the ticket taker
tears off your stub
gives it back to you
while you think,
“there’s no going back, now.”

the second shot of the night
I send it down into the pit of my stomach
seething and burning, rotgut
it wants to destroy anything alive
including me
but not right now
I won’t let it
rather I’ll sit in this chair
and think my thoughts
here we are
men and women
wretched little children
what silliness it is
to go about hoping and praying
for what?
we get everything that we deserve
and nothing more

the third shot of the night
strong whiskey breath
blown onto the red coals of doom
a hunger in my stomach
becomes alive
it wants more than the thoughts in my head
the mind is a crazy tyrannical beast
the greatest of consumers
he wants more and more and more
and gets more and more and more
his thirst is never quenched
his hunger never satisfied
at times I wonder
whether the human race
was created
by the copulation of good and bad
whether we are devils
or gods
pieces of both
I turn to the bottle
and the empty shot glass
I pour from one into the other
it seems ridiculous
an extra step
why not suck straight from the bottle?
because by accomplishing tasks
man feels better about himself
and I cannot let myself forget
I am American Madman

the fourth shot of the night
I feel a little bit of something
a light seen from far off
across a desert
hope is granted to the hopeless man
and he doesn’t know what to do with it
I recall a day last summer
around the time I lost a job
I woke up and went to a bar which had an outside deck
overlooking the river
my girlfriend came along
after some time I sent her home
to feed my dog
the bar was empty
except the bartender girl
and one other patron
a truck driver man
he looked over to me and asked
“why don’t you go home and feed your own dog?”
I turned to him
then measured my drink
glanced out to the bay
and back at him
“because I don’t want to feed
my own fuckin’ dog. I’d rather she
feed my dog and I keep this barstool warm.”
and that’s how it is
just like that
we don’t want to feed our own fucking dogs

the fifth shot of the night
brings me back to these keys
and it’s not summertime anymore
not inside or outside
it’s cold and it’s dark
and the rains won’t stop
the night presses on
it never began
but somehow
it will always be
a cursed freight train
surging through a frosted razor hell
did I search for life?
at some point in time
was I searching for existence?

the sixth shot of the night
and time bends slowly
do not mistake
the measured movements of the whore
as some sort of practiced grace
she’s just doing that
to pass the time
delaying your satisfaction
nibbling away at your life’s limited moments
because you’re paying by the minute
once the sperm is released
the cash is collected
the door slammed shut
and you’re lying naked on the bed
wondering whether it was all worth it
and where to go from there
to the mirror or the toilet
you can see your reflection in both
I am a gambler
a roulette player
watching the ball
land on red
and spin around and around and around
when I bet my whole life on black

the seventh shot of the night
a fulfilled desire
I send it down to hell
and it comes up as a breath of static fire
the pyramid is crumbling
and the slaves look on with dismay
meanwhile the pharaoh jerko off
to his own reflection in a gold framed mirror
it was in the nights
that we truly became alive
running wild through the streets
climbing telephone poles
over the lines and the wires
screaming at the sky
from the rooftops of apartment buildings
in the night it becomes easier
for those who dwell in darkness

the eighth shot of the night
I pour from the bottle
and a long drop slides down the glass
I wipe it away with toilet paper
a bottle cries sweeter tears than I
there is no going back
I think about the options I had
with the night
with tomorrow
with this life
swollen with madness
my eyeballs are dry
my lips chapped
and I feel perfect; exactly as I should
it’s nice to think about dismay
and long walks down gray cobbled streets
a flask in my pocket as I skip along
while the world burns
out of nowhere I realize
I haven’t checked the mail in days
I get up and stretch and sit back down again
wondering why I’d just gotten up
forgetting about the mail
and the burning world

the ninth shot of whiskey
kisses me on the lips
before diving down to rejoin its lost siblings
a reunion of boiling blood
my face gets hot
my dog snores
and I feel like I could feel better
like the gears are spinning
the ball is rolling faster and faster
so I pour another
I could be looking for a job
or reading Anna Karenin
or I could be molesting ferrets
but the only thing that matters now
is that I’ve made a decision
not just to be, but to become
but to become what?

the tenth shot of the night
swallowed like it really means something
like the first time you fight a man
or poke flesh into flesh
these thoughts I have
remind me of my insanity
as though I could somehow forget
I could be out in the streets
or watching a movie
or standing on the edge of a building
but instead I’m here
chained to this desk
bound by bourbon and blind hope
I realize that I’m alone
and there’s been something I’ve wanted to do
for quite some time
but haven’t been able to
because of that girlfriend
who lives here with me
I’ve wanted to drink alone in the dark
in the pitch black
without sound or sight
there seems nothing purer
no better way to come to grips with yourself
and see which one of your many selves
is really doing the haunting
so I turn off the light
close the computer
put a shirt over the flickering control lights
put a rug against the crack under the door
return to my desk
and pour another shot
I close my eyes and slam it back
and I sigh
my, oh, my do I sigh
because this season of my life has just begun

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