ronny

DOORS ARE OPENING

doors are opening but i’m just sitting, staring out a window at the bleary reflections of red and yellow ghosts.

LAST NIGHT I DREAMED

last night i dreamed i couldn’t write a poem but then i woke up, bathed and dressed in wet slate shadows, and went for a walk in the early golden light.

MOLASSES BOOKS

all the beautiful people the cool NY people the melting pot personified the poets in the bookshop sipping freshly brewed black coffee cracking tall cans of Miller milling about in quiet anticipation to hear lines lifted from online chats to hear lines about, dogs, death, and moms to hear with straining ears thru choking heat they drift outside for brief respite the sky colored city orange in september haze they drift inside to hear another young woman in her large love red blazer high above the crowd like someone emboldened by a secret everyone in love she bequeathed the stage to the final reader our hostess dressed plainly radiating bolder only the sheets of paper in her hands have nerves she reads three poems, the last a question: “will you marry me?” shock, ecstasy, he kisses her with golden hollywood passion shocked, ecstatic, a dozen balloons tangle themselves in the ceiling. outside it’s cooler sobbing has ceased gentle falling rain cool cool night everyone in love.

THE TALL BLONDE GIRL

the tall blonde girl walking down Polk from Turk in the fitted charcoal jeans and the fitted chambray shirt, effortless and lithe.

THE TRUTH

the two silver wheels spun in the dim light, a mosaic of Christmas colors—red, green, orange, yellow, magenta—flickering, fading, flashing, and blinking through the small, slowly dying tree in the living room. reflections on the ceiling looked alive, needles and branches forming snowflake-like shadows. Santa had yet to arrive, so the base of the tree wasn't overflowing yet and my attention wasn't there either.

sensations flooded me, most immediate of all the mini marshmallows melting in hot chocolate in my hands, warmed by the space purple mug my dad had received for free at some software convention. classic holiday songs filled my ears—Nat King Cole, Bing Crosby, Judy Garland—clear and voluptuous voices emanating like a bonfire from the spinning wheels of the reel-to-reel. the machine's face looked sleepy, a dim blue screen muted by the spiraling stringed lights on the tree.

sensational as the chocolate and the music and the lights, but also muted, my dad sat content on the couch next to me. sometimes he hummed to the music, sometimes he tapped his feet or quietly murmured a few lyrics, but mostly he twirled a tiny spoon in his cappuccino cup. he took sips, taking his time.

AMERICAN RAILROAD

france won today.

yesterday i lost my favorite hat.

we had technical difficulties.

friday was the 13th.

thursday the car wouldn’t start.

who gives a fuck. bullets

flew, said my phone, two blocks from my cousin’s house where we feasted on vigorón a year ago the day i was feverish or hung over from celebrating with family and friends in the streets, in the clubs, in rum, pride of the country, brown blood. now


Annette was there in the basement with her family and her kids and her babies on the floor wondering when the bullets would stop. but france

won today, and my curls look spectacular.

i brushed the dog.

contemplated yoga.

contemplated the vacuum.

smoked.

1-CALIFORNIA

a kaleidoscope of primary colors— reds, blues, oranges, greens—splashed across mass produced backpacks, massive and light as balloons hanging off the shoulders of a busful of children chattering and sporadically laughing and whining about everything all at once.

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A FOOL

sin city behind, matrimony all around. i am 30 years old and know love and commitment are essential to my survival. the only mistakes left to make could prove lethal: drown in bottles of expensive vodka and wake up a week later, fired. chase a hooker's tail and wake up with children, grimacing in aged judgment. punch a police officer in the face and wake up behind bars, wishing i'd been lucid enough to see the damage done.

yesterday i saw quiet lightning, today i hear Manhã de Carnaval, waiting for some god to disperse spurious summer into fog.

why do they favor me? what have i done to earn their blessings? i know i cannot always depend on their good graces. the gods are fickle, and luck is not love— one can run its course, like a pint of beer in the hand of a hard time.

WE'RE TALKING ABOUT MUSIC

sometimes after a long spring evening of love and drinking and psychedelic dreaming and african-inspired disco rhythms mingling with valerian root and fine wine, with pretty women exchanging dresses like black and white mages, making everyone wonder how many roses can bloom on a table how many glasses can break on a table how many sides a wooden table can have and how many people have actually seen the famous films that have inspired us all to languish in arcades and to laugh on rooftops and to recite famous choruses in creaky hallways and to brr embracing the windy night, one can find nothing more perfect than walking to the bus stop and disintegrating:

TINNITUS AT 30

i had an appointment with an audiologist but i canceled it because the receptionist stared into my face and smiled, glorifying my curly locks.

her smile was mine, and we glowed like a twin star system more powerful than serpents slithering up a staff, bleaching away the darkness.