Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Queen of Shadows

Guy Shadow

“I was my
temporary self”
—Aaron Shurin,
“An Adolescence,”
A Door

I wanted to be—
Somebody else and when
It turned out to be his
Young kid brother…
I lost myself really bad

Lips stained by love—
How can anything be quite
The same or normal after
Knowing his brother’s kisses
So very all the way?

Nothing like a family—
Divorced, parents remarried,
Unhappily again, the usual
Things that happen when
Two boyz are growing up

Brotherly love blown—
Both my young boss cupids,
Blown away, the younger
One there on Thackeray,
Norwegian macho kid

Forbidden muscles—
First the double take
Then turning his head
Away, closing his eyes,
He’s temporarily mine

Overlooking the Obvious

“drooping with tenderness”
—Aaron Shurin,
“Overlook the Sea,
Next to Mine,” A Door

I say to myself—
Beyond saying it’s wrong,
I’m more into loving him,
Than I did his older brother,
Who bent my heart bad

His drooping tenderness—
Pouty, sullen, hardly very
Heroic or graced with any
Heraldic devices, between
Us three no secrets at all

No necromantic dialogs—
No flash of pigeons rising up
No coins in the Fountain
Just a glimpse of his brother’s
Goodlooks & the same smirk

Saying to myself—
What did I do to deserve
Such reckless romance down
Below while Kimi gets Keith,
His big thick lips above?

Private Mythologies

“tell me how to breathe”
—Aaron Shurin,
“Rider,” A Door

I kept his T-shirts—
Because his armpits turned
Me on, the divine stink of a
Man’s pheromones, queer
For the smell of damp

The sideways looks—
Avoiding me like the plague
Finally cornering him in the
Bedroom that first morning
Sliding his kimono off…

Queer for Doug’s brother—
Worse than a French swine
Smelling him all over and
Feeling him up, his dark
Troublesome truffle mine

Quirk of Mother Nature—
What would True Confessions
Or Hollywood Confidential say
When I discovered his shy
Younger brother more hung?

My private mythology—
Nobody knew the awful truth
Better than me, except Kimi
And Keith’s own right hand

Not needed anymore…

Puss ‘n’ Boots Bookstore

“There exists rebels”
—Aaron Shurin,
“Continuous Thunder,”
Into Distances

Maria Ouspenskaya—
My Gypsy Godmother
Queen Bee of the Ave
Madame Bookmeister

Plus the little old man—
Who slept in the back
On a cot with his cute
Pet Monkey Pépé

The display window—
Always full of Herbs,
Rare Books, Hippy
Knick-knacks neat

Like Different Drummer—
Up there on Capitol Hill,
These Temples from
Another gone Era

The Egyptian

“Suddenly one of his
most famous roles
probed deeper”
—Aaron Shurin,
“Continuous Thunder,”
Into Distances

The ‘50s Beatniks—
Bid their cool farewell
Ginsberg’s swan song
At Performance Hall

Across from Egyptian—
Where I watched a
Movie called Brokeback
Mountain later on

As well as Capote—
The movie about how
In Cold Blood came to
Be deep inside me

Different Drummer—
Puss ‘n’ Boots Books
The Egyptian Theater
That was me back then

I was There—
I was Maria’s Son,
I was the Werewolf Boy
I moonlighted for real

Broadway Mon Amour

“Everybody gave himself
up to the voluptuous
pleasures of the grave”
—Aaron Shurin,
“Continuous Thunder,”
Into Distances

Back in 1969—
I was the only queer
Poet on Broadway
On Capitol Hill

At least it felt—
That way living with my
First loverboy and his
Aunt for awhile

She ran a beauty shop—
Where Safeway is now
Lived at Harvard Ave
Across from Cornish

Then the influx began—
Boutiques, coffee shops,
Cafes, disco bars, thus
Gay Lib began…

Dayz of wine & roses—
Love beneath the Rubber
Tree by the Reservoir
In Volunteer Park

Broadway picked up—
Jazzed up with gays
Migrating from all
Around to Capitol Hill

Where did they all—
Come from, where did
They all go, when did
TPTB pulled the plug

No more gay parades—
Down Broadway now,
Condos and high-rises,
Expensive real estate

Regentrification began—
Not just neighborhoods,
But whole generations
Like genres change

Twice Told Tales—
Different Lights and
Beyond the Closet from
Castro to Vancouver

The only thing that—
Doesn’t seem to change
Is me ensconced in bed
Reading a book still…

Power Outage

“A new voice
said, let it fall…”
—Aaron Shurin,
“The Injuries,”
Into Distances

Holy Hypertext—
What to do when the
Lights go out after
A monsoon storm?

I look at my cat—
And my cat looks at me
“Well, smarty pants,”
He says, “What now?”

I hate snarky cats—
Especially literary ones.
Pretty Boy always hated
Laptops anyway.

Too much competition—
For a spoiled cat who
Once had my lap all to
Himself day & night.

So we curl up—
In bed in the dark
Except for candlelight
And read Jack Spicer.

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