Rick Snyder

Three Poems


POEM FOR ANOTHER PERSON

Another spot on the actor’s lungs
or an episode of planes drowning

another night in the company
of traffic lights and sleeping cats

another book whose pages are acid-
free, pot-free, booze-free, and love-free

another effigy of holograms
dangling from the rearview mirror

another videotape rewound
to avoid any additional fees

another prostitute who is
really a policewoman on TV

another way to say why don’t you
go fuck yourself and really mean it

another appointment with the doctor
who advises another appointment

another garbage truck stopping
in the night to beep for x seconds

another glass of water from the pitcher
whose filter you never change

another pronoun to indicate possession
without implying humanity

another pause in the action
initiates the doubt and denial

another roach slowly suffocating
in the moist folds of Wonder Bread

another joke about skin color or hair
color or someone who killed 25 children

another way to eat a pizza without using
your hands is to eat it off the floor

another animated jet worth $10
billion just landed in the back lot

another poet who hadn’t read John Wieners
and took himself seriously was me

another time in another place and we
would’ve stared at each other again

another episode where they smash
the french horn and watch him sob

another page of hieroglyphs
and portraits of D.H. Lawrence

another way to stall for time
is to kill yourself

another fish that used to be found
in these parts was caught 10 years ago

another library book with several
boogers and more typos (no bugs)

another hypodermic needle full of
helium was found at the observatory

another speech by the homeless man
preempted by a car alarm or a stroke

another way to show your parents you’re
not gay without confusing yourself

another coffee can full of thumb-
tacks quarters and rubber bands

another chance to finish the words
before the words finish themselves

another movie filmed entirely
in the astronaut’s lower intestine

another day with a name that’s
nothing like Eleana, Mstislav, Paul


ON FIRST OPENING

Real poems and virtual sighs
what’s the world not coming to
dasein and its 31 prismatic flavors
in a cup please
don’t hesitate to contact me
if you have any impositions
I can be found in 41-B-2030
watching Paolo and Francesca
embrace as the world turns
you become very sleepy
trying to repress memories
of your life as a failed marionette
so unlike Daphne and Pan
the district manager’s rough hands
play you like a bagpipe
passing on a train
until metal clangs and darkness
closes around your eyes
it’s the first day of school
and you are a fish far below
Ms. Pletcher’s pumps
poorly laid plans well up
when your tectonic plates
shift less than those behind
a fellow stranger’s eyes
desire becomes content (to be)
dispersed at the hands
of an interface


BRIEF, PATIENT HISTORY

My intolerance has nothing to do
with lactose or my mother’s refusal
to nurse me after the war
we wore sweaters of sandwich boards
and painted faces representing the drama
of grecian formula and linear proofs
holding the house together
like an inner-city novel spinning
more slowly than earth in a drug store
that doesn’t exist anymore
no matter how many times you move
the same shadows fall down the stairs
you watch with the keen eye of an eagle
filmed high above the blinking towers
a tattered picture of Rita Hayworth
in a time capsule called Jolly Roger
or virus or the newest star to come out
of the consortium of galaxies
in the lower-left part of the screen
we spread talc across the patients’ chests
before asking them to reply
with acts that have no material effect
on the institutions that absorb them

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