Bare Your Teeth At The Sky

A Ghost!

I thought you were a ghost?
Shit. I mean Shucks.
Radiation therapy is
the least popular therapy
right next to reiki. The
wind begins to
tell me a song and I find this
charming. Claiming
to be a nurse practitioner,
I enter the hospital high
on air duster. I tell everyone
they need new colons,
I ride the machines
down embankments,
and wave to Psychiatric Ward,
wherein I left my favorite tooth.



A Limp

In a moment the little boy
will be surprised by the pop
of the big black balloon.
Hanging from his lips, a limp
flower, which he hands you
without hands.
There are bodies in the air
at all hours of the earth, but
you seem to be sinking into
your dainty dirty garden bed.

How carefully we spin
the bottle, and how soft
it sounds as its wet lips
whistle in motion.



Making Leaps

If only to squeeze
a ripe spider from beneath a crack,
that is the work of the woodpecker.
Not to sit and understand,
only to watch how things work: the water
softening the bark and the sun
making great leaps of steam in the morning
then settling in the holes the bird has made.

To be a bird brittle on the branch and to be
me watching it, breathing these
desperate gasps of understanding.
How likely is he to weep
or to sing on a Sunday? But,
focusing the mind in on itself,
I begin to feel
the punctures, all
throughout my skin.




I sit in the darkness of myself or
try to. It is hard to yawp
into the night when there are
mirrors all around. To see myself
through your eyes is no blessing.
I take a photograph
of the little black girl and place it
on my fridge. This is an assertion of ownership,
we own everything
as much as nothing.
people stop seeing the little girl. I
stop seeing her. The portrait flickers
when I go for milk.

I do the same thing to my voice. I say
“I am Grey. Hello. Do you love me? Please love me.”
I take this and place it

in the air where no one or I
can reach it, I don’t care, I say. No one sees
the beauty in a make-up ad.
People just stop
looking. What heights
must I reach, or shall I,
for anyone to see me smile again?
I turn my eyes inward
and imagine.




This morning, driving to work
I thought I saw my father
Hobbling down the road
Fading through fresh fog
With long wild hairs

He stood there a while
A drunken wobble
Monster’s eyes
Details worn away by decades
Like an old grey statue
Staring at me

Only the pigeons
Are allowed to know him
To feel his concrete skin
To cover him in their shit

I want to get out at the intersection
Ask the statue where he’s been,
If he could give me some advice
I have this problem, you understand

Instead, my skin starts to wilt and I scream

Maybe if I close my eyes
And close my throat and close my nose
And put my hands by my sides
Then I could listen to her
She asks “do you have any songs
That remind you of him”
I say yes and sometimes I get drunk
And yell them at strangers
And she laughs

All I want is to kneel in the shower
Spoon her conscience, taste her intuition
But sometimes she’s the one on the ground
And she has to get on her knees
In front of an altar
And look for something
Rock back and forth
While the litany rolls through her
What do you think of that?
I think I think
I think enlightenment is an orgasm?
We are both dizzy with inexperience
Sweet and shallow
People watching
With dirty fingernails

Sometimes she has to smoke, dad
And it smells just like you.


One thing people like about Grey is, he's great at making really weird faces. He doesn't like to do it, but at bars someone always asks him to. What's terrible is, even when he's not at the bar, sometimes he catches himself practicing them in the mirror. "Grrr!" He says into his rearview mirror, and pulls his face upward until it feels inside-out. "No," friends say, "I like the one with the droopy lip!" How many days can go by before someone appreciates his normal, real face?