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how quickly the weather can change
just as the claim to love
dissolves in a hot cup of coffee
we fall asleep
in someone’s arms
wake up to find them gone and
even when it’s not that abrupt
the look in their eyes tells us
the ship has sailed
as if a switch has been flipped off and
suddenly you’re somebody else
the past that seemingly never happened and
we peer into the eyes of a stranger
asking…

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you are the shadow people
caught by the corner of my eye
once there in my life
but not now
present like scars
nothing other than memories and
lessons to learn
there one moment
gone the next
I move on with real people
wondering which ones will become
shadows like you
someone almost forgotten
yet nothing can be undone
once we’ve said hello
we get tangled so I’m cautious now
who I bother to say that…

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People spend lifetimes
searching for gold
scratching lottery tickets
doing dope
looking for answers in the bottom of bottles
seeking fame and fortune
power or
everything
trying their hands at parenting and marriage
willingly or consequently and
there are many who never achieve
any of it like me I’ve set out
to find that golden line
a string of them that zing one after the other
written words…

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I Remember This Song

I remember this song
my second wife
played it on her guitar
almost every morning
while we drank our coffee and
smoked our cigs outside
the sun coming down
on her chocolate hair
her eyes dancing with mine
she always put her cigarette
behind the strings
against the guitar neck
the smoke rising up
like from a smokestack
her kiwi accent vanishing
while she sang
strumming lightly
thumb thumping
the…

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gunshots in the kitchen

I was eleven years old
Grandma had been dead
only a few days

Dad and I
took it pretty hard
while I dealt in my own way
Dad stayed up all night
getting drunk

one night I was awakened
by loud
nearby gunshots so
I ran into the kitchen
wearing only my underwear
Dad was staggering there
holding a bottle of liquor and
a 22 caliber pistol
smoke lingering
the gun pointed at the floor and
Dad firing away
B…

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special flowers in portland

Portland grows
some special flowers
round here

that or
the level of inhibition
is quite low
with some people

I see them
sitting alone and eating
but seeing
is all about perception

he or she entertains a party
they go as far
as to order more drinks
the waiter placing them down
at the empty chairs around the table

the individual makes a toast
extending the glass into the air
arguing and laughing
wit…

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There’s so many things to see
in this city
the woman across the street
from Portland’s
Main & 6th street
bus stop
4, 10, 17, 33, 14

the woman is dressed
like a maid
she’s dusting with one of those
fuzzy things
working the crevices of every window
showing cleavage
to the passers-by
but it’s late
no rush-hour business crap
just a few folks out for dinner
a drink
a break from their children
their jobs

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never asked to be this guy

I never wanted to be this man
this complicated
this afraid
this misunderstood
the man who loves
gets hate in return
no reason other than ignorance
I never asked for it but
it came and I took it
all through my adolescent years
until one day
I finally said I’m not doing this shit
anymore
fuck em and people still ask sometimes
why do you never talk
to anyone and I reply
well who is there
to talk to

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absurd regard for enemies

I’ve seen people
I’d love to love
but they’re too far gone
full of hatred

they’re the same people
who beat me up in the school
bathroom and back then or
now I’d give them the shirt
off my back

but I’m nuts I guess
I ask myself why
would I love them
drop a hundred dollar bill
in the toilet
flush it and then
tell me
what that got you

it’s disappointing and
discouraging that animals
treat each other…

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we continue
to believe the lies

bullshit
gift wrapped
by words like

change

promises based on
a multitude of motives
basic survival desires

talking heads
congress men
senators
presidents play
on our emotions

expose our vulnerabilities
exploit souls to fuel
economic gain

meanwhile we perform
our delegated tasks
buy stuff
pay bills and taxes
obey laws written by
crooks and

once the election is over
w…

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