when is this going to be about you?

I’m so good
at making it all
about me

that even when
you think you’re
talking about you

it’s still about me

do you do that too
or is it just me?

(D. James)

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the last poet

When the night
is over

and the final
cigarette
has been smoked

what will
the last poet
say

After all
the evoked emotion
failed relationships
dead boyfriends
abortions
abusive parents
drugs and alcohol

laughter
and pain

have been spilled
out
in some cases
artfully vomited

what could
this last poet
have to say

How to summarize
this night
these words
life sentences
bad grammar

poetic license
driven to excess

How to follow
the girl who told
of losing all her hair

the guy who
crashed his car

the gay biker
who longs
to be dominated
by a she-wolf
of the SS

the boy
who lost
his virginity
so late

the girl
who lost hers
so early

the words
of so many
who want change
yet stay
right where they are

What can this last
motherfucker
have to say
that can top the
triumphs
tragedies
surprises
sorrows

What will
the last poet
leave us with

as we file
out of this
basement grotto
into the light
of dawn

Do we expect
too much
as he steps to the microphone

the crowd
too drunk
to hush

even the white
of the spot light
seems a bit dingy
as he steps into it’s shaft

The last poet
will speak the
last poem

and we will leave
to sleep it off

Whatever he says
will be the final word
so our expectations
are far too high

The last poet
poor fucker
has nowhere to go
but down

unless he’s more genius
than genius itself
more brilliant
than all of us

The last poet
clears his throat
touches his lips
to the mic

the wait
has us spellbound
and half-hopeful

Even so
when we wake
in the afternoon
hungover and
full of piss

will we remember
any of this

(D. James)

stubborn lazy do-nothing fucker

like a dog
that won’t come

a bird
that refuses
to sing

or a cat
that won’t hunt

what if
I just sat here
all damn day

listening to Nina

the sound
of all that pain
washing over me
like rain

(D. James)

pretty girl moves a room

she notices
the men who
turn their heads
just in time

the ones who look
but don’t want
to be obvious

trying to be
cool
but she
catches them
anyway

often sees
heads moving
to the left
or right

as if
they were
only observing
the room

the one
they’ve been
sitting in
for hours now

funny
how that
keeps happening

(D. James)

better get to it

waiting
for the keys
to speak

why don’t they
type something

must I do
everything
around here

I thought
this writing thing
would be easier

people talk about
poems that write
themselves

where can I
get me
one of those

they promised
life would be
more fun
on a Mac

but I still
have to do
all the damn thinking

(D. James)