Melancholy Hyperbole

Poetry about longing.

Monster Mash


A blindfold; glass apothecary jars full of pumpkin guts, stringy and viscous, slippery seeds and shavings like bits of flesh; oiled spaghetti slick as worms deep in crepuscular earth and long as nightmares; peeled grapes, mucilaginous sclerae, vitreous humors collected by some mutant monster skilled with a blade. Children hover their hands over the openings, hesitant, their smiles tight and battling cringe.   Whisper ghost stories under sheet-draped tables, faces […]

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Bridget Talks About Love and Pavlov’s Dog to Her Niece

The laws of physics are often like the Laws of Love, she says. Newton talked about motion and gravity. Einstein had a Theory of Relativity. Think of light, optics. Yes, you’d better buckle-up. When you’re in love there will be a whoosh. You’ll look Twilight Zone-ist, your toes, soles, won’t touch the ground. Honey, you’ll levitate, ride all matter of things. A liar’s lip. Make Mars or moon landings inside […]

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  My daughter snips a femur from adhesive-backed felt, pelvis already attached to her short skirt. Zombie-cheerleaders lurch past. But, Bob will take first prize again; green branches enfold him, sprout from ears and top of head.   The school crossing guard is Cat-in-the-Hat, and a man in half black/ half white walks two large dogs— white one on his black side, black on his white side. I pinch myself; ouch, I’m […]

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It’s always in the basement

It’s always in the basement:       the crazy aunt who cackles head in a hatbox smiling as a snake does before it bites you deformed child that moans for attention squatting by boxes sorry about what happens later hulking machinery and appliances that whirl thump and squish cobweb-shaggy corners dark concealed spaces tiny chittering glee made by things that will eat you       maybe before you’re dead gargoyles, goblins and gremlins, oh my Skelebunnies, […]

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Speaker of the Church of the Psychedelic Goat

“Robots cannot be trusted,” hollered the man dressed as a Geisha woman.   He stood wide-legged and barefoot atop the makeshift stage, braced only on cement blocks, in the garage behind Pegasus Records in Florence, Alabama.   A fog machine and cheap lights strung behind him set the mood as he and his band offered sermons of sorts between their songs.   “Jump ropes are detrimental to our youth,” he […]

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I’ve little to say to you;      I’m still finding new places      to hide.   You lurk in the middle of the room,             oblivious   to your harm, and I find myself in the shadows,     hoping          you do not see me.   Our roles seem reversed to anyone who does not know to be afraid […]

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Dear Parents:

Strike the soft skin of your children; leave marks.    Go on: show them how hard they must become       to be like you.   Mold them to be mindless: coach them to react    with fists; make them believe that words have       little worth.   Shape them into an almighty monster: modern man.   Destroy their purity and imagination by damning them    with absurd words of a god who previous men       imagined. […]

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