Bobby Prays

small town nebraska 1972

young boy severed of his fond affections
prays to a concept he not understands
—God, be God—
he prays tears burn streaking his dirty face
—we all need you sometimes
be real oh, God, be real
and if not, if not, God,
create Yourself, God
because You are God, God
and can do anything! be real—

his heaven shakes
lash-bruised body quakes
as he draws yet another
pain-wracked breath
in a life short but filled
with oxygen-starved breaths
and some natural tenderness
he cannot name
mother’s love . . .

God, be real
or create Yourself, God
he prays on bruised knees

David M Pitchford
11 Feb 2014

Just Another Dave at the Yella Dove

we should have known by his halo of ill
luck . . . another dave.     he and june kissing
over shots and taking shots at each other
between beer chasers and the next song playing
on yella dove’s new jukebox,   all cd
and mostly seedy  —  such mélange of rock
ballads heavy with big hair and faggoty
guys in earrings and retro-future fits
of mtv fashion   . . .   and june just off
her meds after her twelve-round bout with
eddie and cocaine;   that poor dave hadn’t
a geisha’s chance in a baptist judgement day
and none of us decent enough to warn
a piteous stranger of scorpion stings   . . .

david m pitchford
3 August 2013

Creeping Floods

she calls me cold to my verse,   and all I can
do is hum radiohead and wish   .  .  .    but
I’m not special and the angels won’t reprieve
sentences beyond their jurisdiction.
and sometimes I think,   just maybe this time
I think it could be,   should be,    maybe it is
about me  —  but better sense prevails even
here in this echoed poem of an open
prison.          her ashen heart must have forgotten
what her pretty smile belied,     joy untold
spilling over those urbane weekends west
of everything and apropos of nothing.
fear rains and the floods carry seeds of what
might have been far away to briny death.

Steampunk Angst

let’s take a zeppelin to the moon,   baby,
that cool clean landscape of the lunaphile
sweet virgin muse to myriad poets;
let’s take a steamship to the stars and sail
around the nebulae among the stars,
let’s map the great unknowable expanse
and make love on every beach under moons
we ourselves will name;   let’s take a rocket
to the gods and ask them why they fled our
fair blue world,   left their children to mayhem
and to victimize themselves in their own
sick immaturity   —   atom bomb tantrums
and greed-mongering mania polluting
the whole human race out of house and home   .  .  .

Note Left on a Cold Pillow

tomorrow,   love,   when you realize what
a douche you’ve been and want to apologize,
think long and hard about what led us to this
and ask yourself if you’re willing to put in
the work it takes to make relationship;
are you willing to forget,    forgive    (me
and yourself and the faultful world)?     what did
we learn from heated words and anger flamed
against weakest weakness   —   each taking full
advantage of our knowledge of the other
to wound deepest   .  .  .   secrets become weapons
flung against the fear of injury    (I’ll
hurt you twice as much twice as fast as you
can hurt me)   precedent long ago set.

The Drama with Pop’s Eyes

I want you to go with your pa to the
eye doctor,   bobby,     she tells me.          drive him
down about quarter of eleven so
he can get his eyes di-a-lated and
doc straus can look in there real good cuz he
said somethin’ last month about your pa’s eyes
comin’ apart   —   scalleria or somethin’  . . .
anyway, listen and tell me what he says.

the optometrist is curious to know
how  episcleritis  related to
allergies had become a threat to pa’s
ocular longevity   —   the right eye drops,
he says,     can fix that in a day or two;
cataracts is a threat,   but that’s long term.

David M Pitchford
21 March 2012

Within an Eight by Ten Room

dimly lit by diffuse light through window,
this room has become my cloister prison;
a river called internet runs through it
in the air and ever listening like angels
or perhaps demons, but my mind no longer
distinguishes between such mysterious
strangers, beings . . . more interested in
dogs passing by the window, one all but
blind with cataracts (this is mother’s bitch,
papa’s little darling), and another
the neighbor’s two doors down, a fine specimen
of boxer and constantly starved of good
attention.   .   .   .   and the closely distant sound
of mother shooing him is the scourge on my back.

David M Pitchford
3 Dec 2011