View Full Version : 11 for May

Doreen Peri
05-15-2005, 01:38 AM

I wander through a maze –
an interconnected cavity tunnel.
Each corner I turn, I expect
to find myself closer to the exit,
but my expectations are as narrow
as the pathways. The walls are
formed from thick-leaved shrubbery.
I am tempted to crawl between the
trunks and stalks, rather than continuing
my endless walk. My feet are bare,
my hair is knotted from wind which
changes its direction when I change
mine. My equilibrium is shaken. I am
dizzy, deranged. This is my labyrinth
phase. I am convinced that death
holds the only possibility of emergence.
Is it true that whatever we believe
is true? Who can I follow?
Can I follow you?


Mystic word magician
disappears, reappears
on the other side of the
mountain, exact timing being
the crux of a successful act.

Track his footprints and
you will find the travel
of his mind, ofttimes
indiscernible to the
naked eye.

Copperfield had years of practice.
he can slice a woman in two,
whole, I'm told, Houdini was a
bold escape artist. He practiced
breathing underwater like we
practice breathing air.

It's the mirrors and light tricks
which they are fond of.
Who controls the magic wand above
the stage? Is it the magician himself?
The director? The producer? Or the sage


Toothpaste smiles bright as a bleached garment,
freedom of amaze and zeal, healing hands, timeswept
purpose, voices remembered by peal of bells, hell comes
and goes, hell comes and goes, tell the train to wait for
my arrival on the platform where anger chugs down tracks,
where blackbirds catch the tune of a wanderer, cares slung
in a sack over a shoulder blade.
Hades is like that, one train coming soon.
One train vanishing below a sliver moon.

I was young once.
I'll be young again eventually.
I was young once.
No yellow ribbons tied on me.
I was young once.
I embrace compassionate

I'm a greedy bitch.
I grab onto freightcar emission.
No Buddha or Jesus can save me now.
I lie on the track, back down to terminal doubt,
inhale fumes from a date on a calendar.

Umchugga umchugga umchugga...
ribs crushed like a population.
Umchugga umchugga umchugga...
tsunami grief. No prayers. No prayers.
Umchugga umchugga umchugga...
trucks howl by
trucks howl by
I am a dry-eyed querulous bitch
who seeks a white toothpaste smile
from a conductor who knows when
it's time to pull the cord.

Do not run over me!
my freedom is at stake

woooo woooo
wooooo woooooo
tie a yellow ribbon on the lamppost
where you etch my name with
a fingernail.

Remember how shrill it sounded
when it went up your spine down
blackboard instruction?

I wonder what everything means.


I'd rather have alligator teeth chomp down
on my arm than to have a grenade blow it off
unexpectedly. At least when wrestling alligators
undersea, I could see the enemy before me.
If I were in Iraq trying to get from point A to point B,
the so-called enemy could be anyone, and thus,
we have met the enemy and they is us.


I've painted cranberry lipgloss on,
combed my lashes with chocolate mascara.
I've stared in the mirror and asked my face
if it could spare a smile.
I coaxed and prodded
my attitude, determined
to take a chance!
Now is the time!
Let' us dance!

My wrinkles may say
don't look at me that way
when I see them mirrored
beneath the lights!
But to hell with that,
it's a glorious moonlit night!

If I remove the grease paint
with cold cream and Noxema,
my face would still be
as brilliant as my mind!
What you see is what you get,
every darn time!

Wrinkled or dumb, what's the diff?
Let's dance 'til the dawn air lifts
our hearts!


We are impermanent creatures
becoming ourselves over and
over again, cells multiplying,
dividing, like mathematics.


Wait! Don't leave me now!
Don't leave me here to bellow
in the wind! The trail of ants
has led you to the Rite of Spring within
our chosen diadem!

Wait! Dear Miss!
Do not abandon sighs
and cries of pain and sin!
There's joy to find inside the minds
and in between the tears and grins!

Wait! Don't slink!
At least allow me to offer a drink!

Will it be tea?
Coffee of juice?
A soda or a glass of wine?

Wait! If you dare,
I'll share a sip of mine!

What do I have inside this glass?
I have an idea and a verb.
A noun or two mixed with a revue
of dancing girls with curves.
Take a sip, I dare you to,
we can share a glass
of memory and possibility
... nothing dire or crass!

Come back! Come back!
Follow the trail of ants!
NOW's the time to drink
the drink of chance!


wide to soar
currenttide, wide
to ride jetstream blues,
so cruel a turbulent force,
seating limited when hijacked,
propellors excellerated for rapid
ascent – where did the pilot take off
to? is the landing gear intact? exactly
where do we dare to land? wingspan spread,
tanks gassed, fueled for a rendezvous with orbit,
sky flies by, cumulous, various beasts in 3D, and me
calmly in my seat, steady to reach for emergency gear.


every time Katherine disappeared
into the complex, hiding from crack
dealers and lesbian thieves, she thrived
on her retreats, rejuvenated upon return.
"she pulled the great Houdini again,"
we'd exclaim, as if the dame would
ever learn
to stay away
instead of getting burned.


this is the way the story goes.
it was the '80's, welfare families
packed like sardines, 20 people
crammed into a two-bedroom flat,
crack dealin' moms and dads fat
with greed, kids assigned watch duty
in the 'hood, carriers and cons playin'
craps with a minimal government
monthly check, standin' in lines
to visit locked up uncles, pidgeons
and stools, hamsters, cockroaches
falling from ceilings, black leather seats
in a used Mercedes complete with
a sunroof and alloy wheels, boys
gonna steal what boys gonna steal,
glass pipes and jumpout squads,
trips to first and P, all nighters chasin'
rocks and slivers, clocks know no time
but those who got caught did theirs,
and those who didn't counted
double sawbucks and grants
hidden under mattresses, dirty
money crumpled in the pockets of kids.
i never understood the things they all did.
i watched from the window, slit the blind,
peered through sweet white smoke,
battled pebbles and lines.

This is the way the story goes.
Welfare families smokin',
tokin', checks shot up their arm,
sniffed up their nose
and the decade came,
the decade went.
Lives lost, deaths spent,
gun shots rang through
a metal door, a man murdered
his wife in front of his sons.

This the way the story goes.
decades come with nothin' to show.
clandestine meetings at a corner bar.
gone are the dealers in a complex war.
this is the way the story goes.
decades smoked or sniffed up a nose.
lives quick-snuffed by the stub of a
sawed-off piece, grease on the wheels
of a Mercedes, grease on the ballbearing,
a well-oiled machine....
oh ... the things i have seen.
This the way the story goes.
Oh ... the things I know.


gonna buy myself a drum
and a mouthharp and tambourine,
noisemakers, percussion tools,
pass 'em around to the audience
like Joyce did, get 'em all goin'
hmmmmmm backabacka
hmmmmmm backabacka,
chant my words in a whisper
and thump, bang out my voice
to a choice drumbeat, 'til
people on the street gather,
curious to hear my blather,
but it's not all gibberish, my friend,
i've got something to say that matters.
hmmmmmm backabacka
hmmmmmm backabacka,
they're ain't no lacka
words to speak out...
hmmmmmm backabacka
hmmmmmm backabacka,
gonna hum 'em, gonna shout,
get outa my way, those who question,
my need for time and attention,
it's not about that, see?
i've got a serenade to be.
i can be the drum if i need to be.
make percussion with my mouth
and hands, so next time you see me
doin' my thing, don't hesitate to give
me a ring ... call up to me with a rant or rage,
and i will invite you up on the stage.

05-15-2005, 03:48 AM
How do you consume all of this emotion so as to pour it out all at once? And how do you remember what you want to write? You must share the secret someday Doreen. 'Til then, thank you for the smorgasbord of poetry to dive into (mmm, I think I'll have some 1 and 4 and 8 :D ).


05-15-2005, 04:52 AM
just delicious reading piled high to the peak .ahhh, great stuff.

The Bee Charmer
05-15-2005, 09:01 AM
You really are quite amazing..........

Doreen Peri
05-15-2005, 11:28 PM
heh... people said "amazing" and I didn't even say that these poems were from our AMayZing Word Jam on Friday and Saturday.

Thing was, it wasn't all that amazing at all.. it was pretty darn quiet... other than a few precious, special poetpeople who showed up and I am grateful for their words and presence! (thank you annie! and judih! love you!)

But anyway...

Bryan DaBomb- How do I remember what I want to write? hahaha... well, geez... I don't remember any of it which is why I write it down so I can read it later and remember that I actually wrote it, but still, sometimes I forget and can't even recognize it as my own work but that's because I'm getting old and forgetful ... I tie a string around my head and PULL... hard!!! and still sometimes I can't remember what the string was for... hahaha.... I'm glad you enjoyed these, seriously... thanks... One Four and Eight. Sounds like the title to a tune I need to write. One, Four and Eight. ahh... I'm getting inspired. ;) Thanks much, truly! :)

AP - I hardly see you on this darn machine any more. How are you doing? Thanks for reading... have missed you.... Thanks very much for reading, ms Poet.... :)

Bee - You charm me, sweet lady! Amazement remains to be seen... and I can't wait to see you.... ! Thanks for your flattery. I enjoy being flattered. Don't flirt with me, though, 'cause I might like it. LOL! ;) odd mood tonight.. pardon moi...

Scott - #9 and #10 were true stories, but everything is a true story when someone writes it down, right? But those were really the only pieces I poured my heart out in... other than #1-8 and #11... hahahaha... I crack myself up... seriously, though, listen, I need to WALK. That's what I need to do. If I could just walk, I'd be ok and wouldn't have to write all this **** down.

Thanks for reading, all of you... I appreciate your eyes and ears very much. I honestly have no idea if anybody other than me understands a word I'm saying. I am quite serious about this. Often, I can't understand myself so it is wonderful to know somebody else translates my stuff into their head to make sense of it.

Love you all!