/24 [from] iterations of summer [september]


Spiritual hunger has ebbed//

satiated, in dub[i]o[us] fact—

that desire to have things||

feed the null set ¥ stuff

new abysses with light, possibly color•

<< impossible

burnt sienna~~inside a company>>

an ongoing

conversation with

the universe.


It’s not like it was anymore~~ and thus,

never shall be ¥ >> merely another



varnished doors keep breeding

more doors, tunnels, and bridges

through nights of

crushed oleaginous velvet. My

forest owl continues

writing its poem; the once-homeless poet*

dog smiles. Wet peat-moss

ground has shifted our

common ground; bending


roads with their

attendant anxieties. Imagination

knows what might

go wrong—or right, one

reminds the

self hopelessly lost

in shuffle–


The final days of sum*

mer eluded. There was no

music, just rain. The gar*

den ran wild toward

the sun.


Autumn began her

delicate footfall—stepping


with a slight chill;

condensation on

car windows. One

must clean the ga*

rage, make

room for kaleido*

scopic after*

maths of objects and

their objections

to memory.


This year, I swear

on my father’s grave–I shall

clean the gut[ters] aft[er]

the old red

maple gives up

her wither-crunched

tan [l]eaves–I will

answer when you

call [me].


Until then, you can

find me on the

rotting picnic bench

of my childhood

[adorned with soft,

emerald moss]—


singing atonal arias

to the discombobulated

Ghosts of the House—about

the cold, rusted p[or]ch s*wings

of the encroaching

long winter–


[ab]out longing

to be [a

better] human.

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/21 [from] iterations of summer [september]



The holiday memo was email-bombed COB Friday to all

involved parties with some supervisors bcc-ed in, but none of


the workers fucking cared. Driving for too many days leaning into

the serpentine roads with cars following much too closely toward


a town that no longer existed, I texted you—asking to tape our worries //

splintered prayer boards to stones you should fasten to the hidden


river on the ancient map. . . but the cell towers were cluttered

with the aftermath

of another DOUBLE set {double bubble*gum*

style mass-produced} of


MASS {please note the irony} SHOOTINGS–

on the same fucking day—conducted with the skill of a


virtuoso European conductor HIGH on street-grade

CRACK. Yes, it’s true


I was flying high on polyphonous frequencies—

talking much too fast//frenetically—before the


inevitable underpass—collecting

torrential rains—a bi*product of


the catastrophic hurricane—for which the tourists weren’t smart

enough to evacuate. {When one pays for a desperately-


needed vacation on credit with 22% interest, the best

decisions aren’t always made.}


I was looking for the extra toothbrush for the

adolescent whose father might


IMPLODE again—because of the newly // non*binary

{gender*fluid} sexuality // self-


asserted {finally}; nomenclature

{warrior name}—to clean


out//urge//expunge aforementioned

COBWEBS—in our collective un-


conscious—when you caught me off

guard—with your


frantic//––// EVERYTHING*IS*

CRISIS* phone call.


Please forgive my NECES*SIT*AT*ED //

self-imposed quietude—


in the morning-garden light–

of this six o’clock hour.


There are some things I need to


get off my chest—in P=R=I=V=

A=T=E—while I scavenger-hunt


the missing clues—to share with

you later on your facebook timeline.


Adjust your privacy settings accor*ding*ly—


{{I’ll miss some of you.}}


to catch another

tidal wave*tsunami at the nu-


clear plant—trying to move


the frayed toothbrush through

the diaphanous cob*webs—


one leg in night-dream; O=N=E






When we me*et, you






At the makeshi{f}t alt{ar},




{w}ill es{sent}*i*ally sur-


render. . . .


three t{hous}an/d birds



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/23 [from] iterations of summer [september]



The words were very hungry and, in turn, made the people who heard them hungry.


Some of the captivated audience would go for celebratory pizza and beer and talk utter bullshit;


others flew home in metal-boxes to their estranged spouses, disappointed children, mammoth TVs—


cyber blue light in the retinas too many hours of quotidian escape burned even in their half-dreams



[or, maybe] the pages of the Book would locate and drown them;


sentences dangling them over the edge-plateau Abyss. There were


metaphysical moments a few in the crowd wanted to talk about,


but the words ran right off the page—like a watercolor


on an incline leaving spider threads / maps. The dilapidated, lopsided mask-


constructions might banish the evil spirits back to their proverbial, macabre forests—


but We can no longer see the trees; stuck in being [pronouns].



A sign on the door signals the baby is, at last, sleeping.


The writing on the wall promised the war in someone else’s country would still be going on;


too many splintering teams, foreign interest / disinterest, complications of vested interests,


threats of terrorism / social media [de-]propaganda, [no breathtaking leadership]—



but what, in essence, should a concerned citizen do—make a phone call, send an email,


text the netherworld; tell them to come fetch some of the complicit / colluded crew?



Time should be carefully allotted before it accrues, fools you.



It’s silly to remove the lower pillars of the shifting construction,


but the heavy-metal soundtrack, replete with a chorus of electric guitars and five mammoth drum sets


made it all seem somewhat, temporarily bearable—


before the crumble-shuffle cumulative shock effects; how dizzying!



You really should un-knot the plush, golden rope for the disaffected cat; tired, she lounges


in the tall September grass; late lavender heather, Russian sage, burnt clover—


all the neighbors of the disenfranchised global neighborhood [almost everyone]–


hanging on by a spider’s thread. Saturday’s fifth gear will dissipate


exponentially by Monday, sigh.



It’s all esoteric philosophy [subjective sentences built out of private nomenclature] anyway, isn’t it?]



The cicadas will be even earlier tonight than the earlier earlier duskfall sky paintings, muted by cloud layers,


giving the illusion that all the pain is softer;  light traveling farther away to be closer to


someone / something else.



Objects, adjectives, prepositions, and complicated ideas [the brain’s strange pictures edited by someone who went temporarily psychotic with the scissors and tape]


will be defined by what they are not.


July is not January; money is not water.


Not everything can be counted; not everything can be lost.

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from vi. entropy–iPhone mobius strip [hybrid]


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I lost the night, the skeleton key to my grandmother’s china cabinet, my shadow at the airfield when the military planes went by, the turquoise and chartreuse scarf my mother brought me back from Ireland last May, my resolve.

I lost the notebook with all the passwords, the memo from my boss about tomorrow’s emergency meeting, the apricot dinner-plate dahlia tubers I dug up two months ago, my right to stay silent.

I lost my way out of the forest at twilight, my focus on the last star before cloud blankets settled in, the ability to stay composed during the police interrogation, my favorite coffee mug, my posture.

I lost the burnt sienna leather gloves you bought me, my father’s father’s chest of war medals, the note I left on the refrigerator to remind me of ___________ , my trust in the government, my affection for the media.

I lost my checkbook, my debit card, my childhood bank book, my morals from twenty years ago in the shuffle of the twenty-first century.

I lost my sleeping bag, the one with the broken zipper, anyway. The directions to the secret cove at the shore, the obsidian rock, the stone plateau covered in barnacles where the tiniest creatures pool in the ankle-high water warmed by the sun. Where the spearfisherman cherry-picking the taug taugs that taste like the lobster and crab they eat scraped up his back on the rocks during high tide, and disappeared.

I lost the crystal earring from Czechoslovakia, the large amber pendant with insects stuck inside forever brought to me by my now-deceased ciocia [aunt] from the open market in Krakow. I lost my will to open the door to the universe and say hello to whomever lurks awkwardly inside.

I lost the onyx eyeglasses I need for driving at night, my favorite prescription cheetah reading glasses, the pills that help me sleep but often cause me to hover above toward my bedroom ceiling and witness myself as dream.

The GPS that was left in the car before the crash, the remote on which the seven and nine do not click in. I lost the address to the place that was supposed to help me. I lost my patience for anyone not an innocent child, elderly person, or animal.

I lost my ability to do math; calculate right angles I could no longer see, approximate to the nearest meaningful decimal, the right attitude for talking a jumper down from the platitudes/highest skyscrapers in New York City. I lost my desire for what I used to want so vehemently in my much-younger years.

I lost my father’s sense of ambition; he wanted for me to make six figures, be a success with a large 401k to which he added IRAs when he calculated my paltry tax return annually with the patience of a saint. I lost the ability to work in a cubicle of clocks ticking and unhappy women talking to their estranged spouses during lunch while eating processed-meat sandwiches or takeout from Taco Bell, McDonalds, Wendy’s, Dunkin Donuts, Kentucky Fried Chicken, or Subway.

I lost the spare key to the shed where I buried my doll heads and eyelashes I cut, thinking they would then grow longer because of something I overheard my mother saying to her best friend; the only key to my elderly mother’s safety deposit box [formerly jointly owned by both my parents before my beloved father’s earthly demise] when I retrieved my adoption papers and birth name for the first time.

I lost the antique, yellow, “puffy” lamp bequeathed to me by my favorite voyek [uncle], the white double-blossom rose of Sharon, the female apple tree without its mate [didn’t return after last year’s interminable winter], seven types of designer coneflowers, including Apricot Sunrise, Double-decker Green, Double-decker Pink, Mixed berry–because I was too dangerously depressed last spring to weed.

I lost my convictions, my definitions of happiness, love.

It wasn’t all due to carelessness; there was some fatigue. A spiritual fatigue that settled in –that winter the three ghosts of the House came and watched everything.

I must confess the onerous guilt of multitasking / juggling a million fractured things while on metaphorical crack / caffeine to counter the aforementioned spiritual plus, autoimmune / lupus fatigue.

The ghosts came to me again in the early morning this stunning September morning and spoke slowly, barely audibly, in my left ear [clogged more than the right from goldenrod allergies] that everything, yes, everything was going to be okay;

that forgiveness was not their jurisdiction but my own.

The sole female ghost of the House, Rita Lemery, was the one who did the whispering while the ghosts of her husband, Roger, and my late father lurked on either side of her.

Rita’s ghost cooed with a voice of pure golden honey that my poem about losing things was beautiful, and that she and the other ghosts [even ones who did not frequent my cellar], including that ethereal / eternal version of my father, were proud of me.



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written after Henry Jopek [my father] passed away on March 31, 2015

Shed the black cloths of mourning for white lilies, gladiolas, tulips, hyacinth.

A private grieving finally alone in the House. Thank God. Birds sleeping in the rain

in barren trees of tiniest buds will eventually sprout magnolia and pear blossoms,

ladders of cathedral bells. No more PANIC of not being able to BREATHE properly.

The lungs washed clean by rain. The cloths of being unimaginable

it has been said so much // so little–just rain awash and human weeping

for the lost waiting rooms–for the man who shrank

into a fracture of star.

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/19 [from] iterations of summer [august]

If I am mute this opening sequence of September {a handful of days, perhaps, to recompose myself after overloaded//depletion of too*many*people//hurry—

winding//uphill pot-holed roads—in my claustrophobic//mercurial {silver} metal-box-chariot {epithet: Frightened Minnow Lost at High Tide}—

< < <

I may be sleepwalking through derailed/ugly conversations—

foraging in the obsessive-compulsive ghosts’ cobwebs—

for an ELIXIR to stand upright {though not even}—

scissoring out the names of the dead.

You must not take any of this personally

{but what choice do you have really?}—

the cumulative effect of the proliferating silk//cacophonous bluelit/backlit screens—

was simply—


<  <  <

The holiday memo was email*bombed–on time COB Friday—to all involved parties {some Bcc-ed}—

but no one {including me}—really fucking cared.

<  <  <

I had been driving for too many days {with cars following much*too*closely} toward a town that no longer existed.

I texted you—asking to tape our worries//splintered prayer boards to stones—

you should carry to the Farmington River—expediently—

but the cell towers were cluttered with the aftermath of another DOUBLE set

{double bubble*gum*style mass-produced} of

MASS {please note the irony} SHOOTINGS–

on the same fucking day.

{yes, September finds me quite {uncharacteristically} angry}}—

conducted with the skill of a virtuoso European conductor HIGH on street-grade CRACK.

<  <  <

Yes, it’s true I was flying high on different frequencies—talking much too fast//frenetically–

before the inevitable underpass—collecting torrential rains—a bi*product of the catastrophic hurricane—

for which the tourists weren’t smart enough to evacuate. {when one pays for a desperately-needed vacation on credit with 22% interest, the best decisions aren’t always made.}

<  <  <

I was looking for the extra toothbrush for the adolescent whose father might

IMPLODE  again—because of the newly//binary {gender*fluid} sexuality//

self-asserted {finally} nomenclature {warrior name}—

to clean out//urge//expunge aforementioned COBWEBS–

in our collective unconscious—

when you caught me off guard–

with your frantic//–

–// EVERYTHING*IS*CRISIS phone call.

<  < <

Please forgive my NECESSITATED //

self-imposed quietude—

–in the morning-garden light–

of this six o’clock hour.

<  <  <

There are some things I need to get off my chest—

in P=R=I=V=A=T=E—while I scavenger-hunt

the missing clues—

to share with you later on your facebook timeline.

Adjust your privacy settings accordingly.

{{I’ll miss some of you.}}

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/2 [from] iterations of summer [june]

Count the steps to the mailbox at night, the number of seconds in emotional freefall, the minutes left in the hour, the hours until the work finish line. There is always more time [on some level] somewhere.

When flipping the conversation on its Kafka-esque back—make eye contact to gauge the subject’s attitude. So many are distracted by the internal goings-on; a few seconds is enough to gauge the subject’s attitude.

Enumerate the drops of the waterfall to have that Zen experience amidst the mass-produced chaos of the hour. Cars zigzagging on the freeway; following too closely. Road rage will get you nowhere; zoom in on your shadowed hand.

The dreamer becomes a statue lost underwater, tangled in seaweed moss. The fishhook may dislodge more dirt than one can handle. Pull up the nets and count the bounty; contemplate setting the captive free.

Saturday’s fifth gear will dissipate exponentially by Monday, sigh.

The other subjects were pleasant overall.

If reading between the lines, jettison all lines. There are no absolute rules—just the skeletons of fists grasping one’s own collar.

When sleep becomes a weighted blanket, wrap the moon and stars around the body’s cocoon; brace for the rain in the open windows that let in tomorrow’s frenetic bird trills.

There was heated discussion of not talking about the wars going on; documents signed to hide other documents. Talk of fake news, media non-facts, egregious behaviors, illogical events. . .

Don’t be fooled by the proliferating screens.

The subject’s suitcase hides a vacation to the island of reprieve. It will be very quiet there; pack music to unfold pages/uncurling mimosa blooms.

Don’t panic; others have felt this way.


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i•Phone *möbius strip* {hybrID.(b*oo*k)}: in*tro



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Lost, this.

Lost, thus.

Sleep wages

a feeble war

to defy her armor.

Her edges pull down

a tent of stupor.

The brain—an organ

of electro-chemical


toxic or devoid.







The final lime

green flickers

of fireflies,

a sad excuse

to peel the eyes.

I am sweeping, this.

Sweeping, thus.

The broken china

and depression

glass lemon lime

pink amber

shards to scoop into

tomorrow’s dustbin

or the garden bed’s

cheerful mosaic (music).

Wearing the sweater-shawl

my father darned

or his flannel jacket

of blues and grays

the colors of his stormy eyes—

the jacket from too many

days in the hospital,

too few of hospice.

I am sweeping, thus.

To stay busy, distracted

from too many storms

on the encroaching



their chaos.

I have seen you, too,

at the dangerous peripheries—

an outlaw of the future

tempting the impossible.

Don’t look so afraid.

I am reaping, this.

Weeding the meaningless

and riffraff

after the ship


into the pillar-


Tomorrow I shall plant new

ideas and things

I’ll dream tonight

when sleep comes

with her white-down


comforting the lost,

the petrified.

Tomorrow I shall awake

like you

and forget

all I need.

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