heroin raindrops

heroinraindropsCranes fly overhead
Reflected by glass and steel
Turning dreams to dust

Sweet blades of wet grass
Soft as the silk of her hair
Tremble in the rain

Red sunset beauty
Ponds ripple, blue light scatters
All things fade in time

How to lose your life
Without even trying to
You just follow me

First I hesitate
Plunge the needle in my vein
Yes, the fix is in

What’s the speed of smack?
Misery to ecstasy
In seven seconds

Every junky’s like:
Never mind the setting sun,
We’re supernovas.


all dead heroes


I walk with dead heroes in a sea of broken statues, of ancient gods with stoic faces that weep spiders as they stare into the sun. We shiver in the heat, drift like ghosts through city streets, scattering the happiest of crowds. People roll away from us like waves do from the shore, our desperation sensed by those desperate to ignore.

I live with dead heroes who speak to me in murmurs, across the veins of dry rivers that once swelled in the sun. Now I float where your river takes me. I sleep where your shadows make me. My dry rivers have long since vanished into darkness where they died weeping crimson tears. I am an escape artist. My heart whispers of escapades, but my pockets are full of prisons and my stomach is sick with keys. So I spend my nights alone with you and all my dead heroes in these quiet, cluttered rooms.

Tonight, I slip past sleeping statues, I abandon all dead heroes. I find peace on crowded city streets with youthful gods at play, who in dance and drink live to die another day. But my dead heroes always find me, and trace their lines upon my arms. These people flow around me like ripples on a pond, my presence sensed but my life soon to be foregone.


Sunset Black and White by Cetrone

Their time pours like a waterfall, our time trickles toward the sunset. Our time drips in the dusk from the edge of the world into the dark abyss of the Pacific like summer raindrops on the petals of a corn rose. When the dawn comes, our time shivers across the west in the morning dew of a thousand green fields where a billion blades of grass tremble in the cold before the sun washes over them.

A junky’s time is tangled between past and future.

Yesterday we basked in the warm glow of the sun and the green shade of your garden. You squeezed my hand and you held your breath as you watched the hummingbirds flit from your daisies to my lilies, moving so fast their lives skipped frames. Tonight I went outside to face a cold, dark, starless sky. The garden walls are crumbling into the dead grass and there’s nothing left but a pile of dirt where your daisies bloomed. Tonight, I can’t find you. I don’t want to remember why. Every night, when I close my eyes to see yours, I won’t have to forget what I don’t know.

Let their time flow like a river. My time trickles toward the dawn.

Android Poetry Cut-Ups

William S Burroughs-Brion Gysin (Ian Sommerville's 'Dyptych' 1962 collage)

William S. Burroughs and Brion Gysin in Ian Summerville’s 1962 collage “Dyptych”

These poems were generated from my own words by a mobile phone’s predictive text program, Swype. The lines were then rearranged. This produces the reverse of the Brion Gysin and William S. Burroughs technique of cut-ups. The words are yours and the selection is not, instead of vice versa.

Yes, if you want to write poetry, I think it’s best to let a phone or newspaper do it for you.

“Swype, using AI and language models, creates a database of user’s frequently used words and predicts a next word.

Time is a greedy pig
in a sea of penicillin
A penthouse pet with a loan modification
Filthy green anxiety
a physical reaction to stress
A remnant of the day ago
Grief retracing
the same thing
far enough to hurt.
Too much
discretionary data
every day, except for the empire.
too much time

I could never be
I could never have been
I don’t want to be

I don’t think it’s calming
when you come back here to sleep
with the unemployed youth of the day
Maybe I should be enough,
the only reason,
you said.

If I could use some reason
If I could never be
If the pain is unforgettable
the next time you want me
You can stay here longer
if you can’t afford to take care
Sleep on to the pharmacy
It is the night somewhere.

Find what you love and let it kill you


If you don’t know well enough what you love (or love well enough what you know) to throw caution to the wind, to accept the cruelty of chance and failure and death in pursuit of what you love, then you aren’t living. You’re just killing time.

His body ravaged by wounds and years of exertion, Alexander the Great died after a brief louvre-portrait-alexander-great-356illness. His army had refused to march further into India, forcing his return to Babylon. He was 32; killed by what he loved—war.

Jean Vigo’s weak health was exhausted by the effort of finishing his first feature film, L’Atalante. After he finished editing it, he died from an illness complicated by the tuberculosis he had managed to survive for years. He was 29.

In other words, a life worth living is worth dying for.

If Alexander had halted his campaign after conquering Persia, he would simply have been Alexander III, a Greek king who was born at the right place and the right time. Philip II had already laid the groundwork for a Greek invasion of Persia. Alexander was a brilliant general, but he would not have earned his place in history had he not been driven to death by what he loved in life.

JeanVigoVigo, in contrast, had never been a healthy man. He devoted himself to cinema after reading books about filmmaking while in hospital. With just one feature-length film to his name, he is remembered today not only for his films but as the grandfather of the French New Wave, a movement that arguably caused the most radical change in the art of filmmaking since sound.

What you let kill you will define your fleeting existence in this world—and sorry, gunslinger, there are no other worlds than these.

So, stop killing time waiting for death, and start dying for what you love.

The origins of the quotation, “find what you love and let it kill you,” are unknown. It has been misattributed to Charles Bukowski.