Sunday, August 30, 2020

In Front of the Keys (For Jax) 

I don’t believe she’s almost 40
Yes, I know it’s just a number
Still I don’t believe it

The words arrive and baby I’m amazed
Amazed at how she’s free of stipend or stipulation
As we all do our best to survive and thrive during these radicalized times

In front of the keys that are old friends and yet continue to surprise as they infiltrate a doughnut shop simply because the cops need to get off their rumps, stop killing black people and start to actually protect and serve everyone
My fingers are sticky from glaze and haze and a look at all the daydreaming I do because it keeps me proactive and profit
I’d like a cuddle because something tells me your cuddles are the remedy for a civilization that stopped being civil long before the Monolith became all the rage and the purpose of advancing intelligent life became the key to unlock our black hearts

I don’t believe she’s almost 40
I don’t believe in lots of things
It’s just the way I roll as autumn arrives like a thief in the night to steal our breaths and replace our thoughts with nightmares of bad sci-fi and television pilots that blow up like the Hindenburg

There’s love and then there are those who only want to score
There’s art and then there are those who only want to make their mark
There’s hope and then there’s fear, which too many people deal in like lawyers, guns and money. Fuck everybody who doesn’t believe in God.

Charles Cicirella

Monday, August 24, 2020

Reaching Into Eternal Emptiness

Hitting the bottom is different for everybody
Sometimes it involves murder, other times just infidelity
Mel Brook wasn’t futzing around when he laid down the law

Reaching into eternal emptiness is like reaching for the last doughnut and only powdered sugar remains at the scene of this victimless crime
Maybe we expect too much or maybe we best stop eating the shit conservatives continue feeding us. Don’t ever buy the party line against progressives because until we actually move to the left we’re continuing to fail as a country and as an ideal
The melting pot is a ghost of its former self as the white scum rises to the top, leaving all the beautiful people at the bottom of the barrel

So what I’m a bottom feeder. What are you, but an exposed nerve whose own electricity has high-tailed it out of here leaving you in the crime noir dark
The shadows positively mock you with their Edward Scissorhands and Johnny Depp tequila eyes
Let’s get something straight I only signed up for the depravity, no one ever said I had to be an upstanding citizen

Today Donnie tweeted he believed he was leading in the polls which is categorically untrue like everything else that spews out of his baby manhole mouth
In his estimation the more he lies, the more these falsehoods permeate our social consciousness and he’s right because half the country was never all there to begin with and enjoys a good yell before putting down another of their kin
We’re in more than unstable times and people seem to fail to understand this either because of fear or simply because ignoring the problem has always done the trick in the past. Thing is sticking our heads in the sand is only making us more vulnerable as the post office becomes the next casualty in one man’s dismantling of our Democracy.

Charles Cicirella

Wednesday, August 19, 2020


I wonder what it will take for someone to comment on one of my poems.
There’s a group of poets here in Cleveland that I don’t get along with and I’ve had to accept that and move on, but what about all the other poets I’ve known since Columbus or even before that, where are all these people and why do I feel like I’m by myself and no one wants to invite me to their party or come to mine?
Yes, I’m feeling sorry for myself, but there is nothing wrong with that from time to time because branches have a tendency to break, especially when too much weight is placed on their outer limbs.

Critiques are a dime a dozen and those who burn hot are too often left out in the cold as the fires of forgetfulness chastise you for being too full of yourself.
Sometimes I want to crawl up inside my anal cavity and forget I ever signed up for this passion play, but then I remind myself doing the work is the only way to make it through and that this is even truer when the The Tokyo-Montana Express has your name on it.
He filled his gun with bullets and his belly with hamburgers then he checked out because checking in wasn’t getting him anywhere fast and only made him feel sadder and more alone.

I wonder what it will take for someone to pat me on the head and say good dog. Of course I don’t really want that kind of faint praise because bubbles like that always have a tendency to burst right at the most inopportune of moments.
Isn’t God nothing and no one and isn’t a crown chakra just another crown of thorns resisting pregnant pauses like Sophie’s Choice?
I waited in the darkhouse for the Creative Director and you because I knew I could fall into your arms when everything stopped making sense.

My poetry is the dark horse that will never win the Kentucky Derby and no, I don’t smile when I read my poetry or at any other time because when I was in elementary school and smiled one time for picture day my mother traumatized me by making fun of that frozen, vomitus grin.
I wonder if Jim was the last true counterpart I’ll ever experience up close and personal.
Our intensities joined forces and like a wrecking ball took no prisoners as we demolished expectations and exposed fear for the little twat that it is.

Charles Cicirella

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Garden of Eden (For Jax)
I start a poem or does a poem start me
I’m really not sure, but either way it’s all good
You’re like a library I’ll never check every book out of

Have you read Brautigan?
If not call me some night and I’ll read to you from “Watermelon Sugar” or “So the Wind Won’t Blow It All Away”
It will change you as the words tear from the page like convulsions or abstract bullets

I was born in the Garden of Eden under some rock or up a tree
You were always there even before God made Eve and Adam from dust
The serpent was an afterthought and that’s why evil is always chasing its obnoxious tail

Let’s duck into this casino that has air conditioning and talk about our dreams and the nightmares that elude us right before waking up
I hold onto you like a bungee cord because I’m new to zip lining and all the adrenaline that goes into such an unbelievable waste of time
Never forget when I reached for the pomegranate and you gave me the stink eye because you knew the fall was just around the next unexamined corner

You start a song or does a song start you
Either way you have that dark rhythm in your Brownsville soul
You’re like a hardware store whose nuts and bolts have been baptized by Jesus himself

Have you ever looked up in the sky and read your prosperity in the clouds?
If not call me some day and I’ll tell you your fortune like I used to when I was Jaspar the telephone psychic
It may not amount to much, but it’ll be fun to lay out the tarot cards and show you a side of myself I haven’t visited in quite some time

You were born in the Garden of Eden in a flowing stream or in a dark cave
I was always there even before God introduced shame to these absolute beginners
The serpent didn’t know what hit him or her when the forbidden fruit was bitten into and it was anyone’s guess who would come out on top and what difference it would make anyhow.

Charles Cicirella

Just Out of Reach (For Jax)

In the dark
I cannot grasp the light
Words just out of reach

You’re mercurial
Like a cat or hurricane
Secrets encase you in stone

I’m a poet and so are you
We both made sacrifices
It’s the covenant we made with God

You possess electricity and it possesses you
The hellhounds on your trail resemble unicorns
I looked into your eyes and found Dante’s “Paradiso”

In the light
I reinterpret the dark
Words smother me in kisses of oblivion

You’re quicksilver
Like a first edition or crossword puzzle
Clues outline you in child’s chalk

We’re both human and supernatural
You know it and I know it too
It’s the bond me made when still in the womb

You ponder existence and it ponders you
The angels in the architecture believe in you
You looked into my heart and found me just out of reach

Charles Cicirella

Monday, August 17, 2020

Hope Equates Fear (The joyless beggars are filled with mirth) (Or Chris Campanile is a Big Teddy Bear)

The atmosphere is ripe for dividends returned and apple orchards restored
The Garden of Eden is non-fiction and if you don’t believe that shame on you
Chis Campanile drove the van while Bill and I hung onto the bumper for dear life. When the Texas Ranger stopped us looking for guns we got away without even a warning because God is good

Chris believed in me like few people have and gave me the benefit of the doubt more than most
We read poetry in several choice locales including in Austin, Texas where a world poet claimed dominion over all unsuspecting souls
Breaking bread with Chris and his son Phoenix was both a blast to the past and a shofar shouting the Jewish New Year

Let’s leave all past grievances behind us and start fresh
The world needs to be driven through a car wash and have the last four years of grime and grief go the way of the apoplectic dinosaurs
I’m all for forgiving, but I will never forget how a man and his party of idolaters nearly drove this country over a cliff while doing their best to break our spirits and crush our dreams

The atmosphere reeks of step and fetch it lies and petty grievances painted on the walls like golden showers of desperation and unsound fury
When I first heard Christopher sing I knew his soul wasn’t for sale and that he was a guardian of light and a warrior for truth
He plays his entire body like a drum as his cosmic trip mind wrestles us from the hatred none of us should fixate on for too long.

Charles Cicirella