Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Sonic Youth - Teenage Riot

Wobbling Roof Magazine

I'm in it along with lots of other good people. Go here.

Hello Autumn

Give me the new sensation
of weightlessness and wonder.
All the affection before breakfast
in groove central. The love of love
in this most chaotic time.
The flower petals-I'll have her
and she, me. Delicate morning
still stained pink above the buildings.
These mistakes have a clear gel
to clean the hands smooth. Wet butter
of nests and sunshine.
What would you say to a day
if you could speak to it?
I understood until you explained
it I was just sort of wandering around.
It's not funny if you're making me think
you've left. Calm as wind
whistles as the crunchy brown season grows.
I love the gentleness of friends
what they see in me I don't
glisten to me.

Monday, September 28, 2009

You can go here

The Shelf

Like I could be be anybody
with next to nothing on.
I thought they would invite
me up to dance during the Kol Nidre
service-I was ready,
but it never happened.
If you are feeling sick
or beautiful don't get
on the train-you will not
be left alone. I am always
thinking of you, even
when I'm not I feel
shaky and convivial.
Joy comes in small
packages, like Monday
turns into Tuesday
or a man walks you
to the subway, don't be
nasty to me-you will not
be left alone, not for the A
or the F or even the L.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Poetry Reading

Saturday, October 3, 2009, 7:00pm

CROWD at Cafe Orwell
247 Varet St.
Brooklyn, NY

Featured poets Todd Colby & Julian Brolaski
with a musical performance by Zachary Cale

Todd Colby is a poet, lyricist and actor. He has published four books of poetry: Ripsnort (1994), Cush (1995) and Riot in the Charm Factory: New and Selected Writings (2000), Tremble and Shine (2004), all published by Soft Skull Press. He has edited an anthology of cutting edge and new genre poetries: Heights of the Marvelous (St. Martin Press, 2000). Todd has performed his poetry on PBS, MTV and Canada’s Much Music Network. He has performed and read live at: The Whitney Museum of American Art, Performance Space 122, Lollapalooza, The Knitting Factory and Universities throughout the continental United States. He has produced many collaborative books and paintings with the artist David Lantow. These works are in the collections of the MOMA and Brooklyn Museum of Art. Todd has taught numerous poetry workshops, coordinated reading series at the Poetry Project with which he has long been associated. He keeps a daily blog at

Julian Brolaski is the author of the chapbooks Hellish Death Monsters (Spooky Press, 2001), Letters to Hank Williams (True West Press, 2003), The Daily Usonian (Atticus/Finch, 2004) and Madame Bovary’s Diary (Cy Press, 2005), Buck in a Corridor (flynpyntar, 2008) and the blog herm of warsaw. Xir first book gowanus atropolis is forthcoming from Ugly Duckling Presse in 2010. Brolaski lives in Brooklyn where xe writes poetry, serves as a Litmus Press editor, plays country music in The Low & the Lonesome, and curates Mongrel Vaudeville.

Zachary Cale's recent release WALKING PAPERS, is his sophomore effort and marks his leap from a four-track-bedroom-folkie to a songwriter of visionary scope. Recorded in 2005 in the legendary Bearsville Sound Studios by Marcata engineer, Kevin Mcmahon (The Walkmen, Titus Andronicus), WALKING PAPERS was granted a belated release in December 2008 on the burgeoning Brooklyn-based label, All Hands Electric.

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

From Where I Am

Thunder is just deep bass
and the paper on the floor
can be folded into unusual shapes.
Household cleaning products
like dirt would ever come from a can
and be sprinkled over a book of poems.
Dust can be blown from a car
(but I'll never own a car). The woods
are miles from here green and lunch
will be served from a plastic thing.
I'm not going to give you what
I do not have but I'll build
you something sturdy and silver
and sumptuous like a robot
made from electrodes, tinfoil and meat.
I like you because you make
dancing seem fun when I sing
you move your hips to the beat
of my black licorice heart. Won't you
dance all the time, even when you're afraid
to dance, even when you feel cruddy?
Circle one: yes or no.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tuesday with John Keats

"Do you not see how necessary a world of pains and troubles is to school intelligence and make it a soul?" -John Keats in a letter to George Keats, 1819.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Super Last Minute

When you craved the all new
you lapped at water laced with cream
it was all you could do to make ends meet
with your super last minute rituals, decoders,
voice modulators, erased messages, the works.
I was always like "what's going on over there?"
Not even a whole trip somewhere so
we watched some movies of people going places
and that sufficed for the summer.
Now that a smug tingle is in the air
our rule is to become strangers every
now and then. And we live by the rules
in our simple circle. Loops of your hair
serve as reminders you're not either.

My Demands

My demands: all cars make whisper what once honked,
a few people smile when they think of me,
dessert for breakfast, a prayer on a piece of wood,
unopened goat's milk, coffee, toast, pretend.

Friday, September 18, 2009

I Ride Them (for Marianne Vitale)

But have the lamb
what thick cordage
for a corduroy toy
hung meadow she glows
this thistle from her bib
I swallow whole the cracker
minimizing features to a pew.

I have crusted them
they are all animals
and I ride them holy
I ride them I ride them
I ride them.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Super 8

I could be dancing
in color on good film for you
getting it all down on super 8 for you
dancing like that machine that dances
that mechanical bull in urban cowboy
I want to dance like that machine all the time
dancing like that only with some
comfortable jeans on and athletic shoes.
Some of the blinds should be open for this
it is best done in light it's so simple
what a dance can do without drama is the best for you
things in this room are disappearing
now swirl, now contact, now work, now you.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Let it Come Down

Let it all come down now because the sky has
turned brown over the sun. There is
nothing so lonesome as the sound of iron
dust from a train colliding with your idea of a home.
All you ever really wanted was a way out of hell.
In all these years not a meadow or feature
unmarred by the future tumbling in so fat
and furry that the neighbors lock their doors.
When you approach a taxi, it lifts into the air.
Now what you need is a better root, something
you can sink your weak teeth into,
something fleshy and determined, or something
surrounded by oak and vetiver, if you wish.
I'm not here anymore than you are there.
Walking the sidewalk from Henry to Smith
while gravitating toward doom which has
eclipsed the day more or less making you
secure with insecurity. I wish you could be fatigued
and charming at the same time.
I don't know what to say, so I'm saying it.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Rest in Peace Jim Carroll

August 1, 1949-September 11, 2009

Poem (for Sharon Mesmer)

A cobalt blue Cadillac is a pretty thing
in Brooklyn. If you can afford my teeth
then slap my face with the flat end of a knife.
I'm standing on this wedge platform
that tilts into the Gowanus. It's fun but
my pens keep rolling into the green water.
Are you in the same canoe as Leon?
I'd like to introduce you to him (Leon) during the next mobbing.
We have star bursts and red sugar. You should
eat more sugar. Let me know if you'd like me
to translate anything. Really. You should. Eat more sugar.
I know you have a taste for the obscure;
you've been to France and all that.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Sparkle Days

If there were one love then I would call it that.
Pickled burdock for his skin. The light is too
low on the latex leaves to see the dust you mentioned.
The loft was an old bar once, some drinking ceremonies,
a cabaret perhaps with velvet scarves and sparkles.
I am a citizen riding the G train to Lorimer with you.
A cat that looks like a mountain lion is staring us down.
Isa dropped him in the jail closet right before dinner.
Some laughter, inching closer,
a feast, Jo. Some listened to the speech interrupted
by a shout. We were silver and goodness
walking home with 5-feet of Pennsylvania milkweed. It was wrapped
in pale yellow paper tied with multiple twine knots. You carried it
over your shoulder with a smile.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Just Standing There Grinning

There were times when the sky had a wick and I could set it ablaze.

Small red roses in a clear vase on an aluminum table.

The good smell of stuff after she leaves.

First day of school. Kids everywhere.

You can make a difference.

The crossing guard's over-exuberant welcome made me feel like she was putting me on or else in a ridiculously good mood.

Grey sky with various spangles of light blue poking through.

Incredible things are happening in my neighborhood.

La Loo's mission fig goat's milk ice cream is so good that's it's fucked up.

She rattles my medals when she leaves the room.

Being glad for avocados.

Low water pressure can bum a dude out.

Just really getting hyped up on the new craze.

Turning the page and finding a note.

The smaller bunch of fuzzy round white flowers in a shot glass.

Just standing there grinning.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Number One

Some impressive stuff is happening in Brooklyn.

Some latent summer gist is making things complicated.

The more you look at it the better it gets at going away.

I'm starting to leave off where I spoke about the return I'd be making.

In an effort to understand you I built a little puppet stage and made a puppet and called the puppet Todd and explained what you meant to my students in a theatrically deep voice.

All-in-all the blues are pretty good.

My algebra skills have evaporated entirely.

Sometimes I wonder what I can do to make the people around me feel better about being who they are.

My sleep patterns are a cause of concern for several people in this world.

In an effort to lose the contingency of irony there will be no bank shots or snooping around the loose ends that just don't add up.

Taking up knitting is not an option for me at this juncture.

Standing on the world and it still doesn't look right.

This makes sense in a logical way.

How is your day going?

Baby Island

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Top 10 Sunday

1) Blood Orange Soda made by Villa Italia.
2) Big paws.
3) Having to imagine beaches all summer.
4) Brooklyn is nearly empty.
5) Mister Lonely by Harmony Korine.
6) The muted embers of yonder.
7) I slipped a poem I wrote into the window of the Court St. CVS.
8) Her plaintive tone.
9) Grey slip-on Vans.
10) Morning, just that it's that.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Master Air

You've got to think in terms of poor sleep quality
and how it impinges upon your ability to play with air
in the meeting you call to order watch this
standing up and does it look real? That's what
you've got to ask yourself if you're sacrificing
your ability to look authentic playing with air
we're not entirely convinced that you are losing
yourself in the lonesome air
you called the meeting together to explain
your idea about solidifying air and how this
would eliminate the need for cots
or hammocks that we could rest anywhere
lay down in midair we thought you were talking
nonsense but your air would be thick
and heavy and we all know
you can't text a message to a cohort
in solid air in the middle of a conversation
any more than you can ride a bike through a wall.
We're pulling for you to pull through, to get some rest,
and play more convincingly so that we may once again lose
ourselves in your mastery of air.

Thursday, September 03, 2009


There will always be someone there
to tell you how to trim basil, that you shouldn't
let the prop own you, that there are going
to be people all up in your grill wanting stuff
from you when you are too tired to give
them what they want--which happens to be a lot.
There will be days when the days seem not like days at all
but more like bowls of acid in a tent made of human skin.
Your whole demeanor is based on sleeplessness
and still you muster the bear joke, the sick puppy
joke and the careful consideration of details
to make ends meet. I love your style. I will not
haunt you when I'm gone, I will position myself carefully
behind you, lifting your arms should you need to wave,
turning your head if there is something at your side.
You really can count on me, the rest is up for grabs.