Monday, January 25, 2010

Joseph Reich: is a social worker who works out in the state of Massachusetts: A displaced New Yorker who sincerely does miss diss-place, most of all the Thai food, Shanghai Joe's in Chinatown, the fresh smoothies on Houston Street, and bagels and bialy's of The Lower East Side. He has a wife and handsome little son with a nice mop of dirty-blonde hair, and when they all get a bit older, hope to take them back to play, to pray, to contemplate in the parks and playgrounds of New York City.
He has had works which have appeared or forthcoming in such literary journals as, "Poesy," "Dispatch Detroit," "Falling Star," "Color Wheel," "Bareback," "And Then," "Grafitti Rag," "Main Street Rag," "Bouillabaisse," "Decanto," "Rogue's Scholar," "Poetry Motel," "The Beat," "The Potomac," "Poetry Super Highway," "Panic Brixton Poetry," "Istanbul Literature Review," "The Taj Mahal Review," "Stirring," "Sugar Mule," "Juked," "No Record," "Inscribed," "Glass: A Poetry Review," "CC & D," "Down In The Dirt," "Ascent Aspirations," "Right Hand Pointing," "Why Vandalism?" "The Cerebral Catalyst," "Cause & Effect," "Subtle Tea," "Yippie," "ESC! Magasine," "The Oak Bend Review," "Opium," "Problem Child," "Sein Und Werden," "Denver Syntax," "Paradigm," "Paradigm Shift," "Mad Swirl," "Houston Literary Review," "Words-Myth," "Literary Mary," "Side Of Grits," "Gloom Cupboard," "Motel 58," "Cherry Bleeds," "Poet Works," "Jukebox," "Neonbeam," "Burning River," "Third Wednesday," "The Philosophical Society Of England," "Gold Dust," "The Battered Suitcase," "The Iguana Review," "Spot Literary Journal," "Breadcrumb Scabs, "Semaphore," "The Delinquent," "SALit," "The Wichita Falls Literature & Arts Review," "42 Magazine," "Ottawa Arts Review," "Mirrors Magazine," "Puffin Circus," "The Shout," "Going Down Swinging," "Scawy Munstur," "River Poet's Journal," "The Hudson View," "Shoots And Vines," "The American Drivel Review" "Muton" "Suison Valley Review," "The Stray Branch Literary Magazine," "Unfeigned Coffee Fiend," "Grey Sparrow Press," "Viola Beadleton's Compendium," "Low Fidelity," "Blinking Cursor," "Nibble," "Wilderness House Literary Review," "Haggard & Halloo," "Verse Wisconsin," "Audience," "Work Literary Journal" "Gutter Eloquence," "Midwest Literary Magazine," "Front Range Review," "The View From Here," "Lowestoft Chronicle" "The Other Herald," "Zocalo Press," chapbook, "If I Told You To Jump
Off The Brooklyn Bridge (Flutter Press), book, "A Different Sort Of Distance" (Skive Magazine Press) and recent book of poetry, entitled, "The Derivation Of Cowboys & Indians" (Poet Works Press)


1
The Light Which Creeps Through Curtains


i used to once used to know this girl this lady this woman this mother whatever you'd want to call her who was so nice and kind and hard on herself so obsessive compulsive when she vacuumed would try to vacuum up the sun right off the floor spilling thru her window & would go over it again & again & again & again until she was convinced& sure it was all gone & it was all very subtle solemn yet also quite troubling& unsettling while in many ways kind of beat & beautiful as if literally going through the motions going through these routines& rituals these selfsame machinations would trigger some kind of break through an escape from the everyday state she found herself in maybe even liberation a redemption or even revelation as if going through the motions she was magically trying to make some sense some thing positive productive out of it even some thing pleasant & radiant

out of all the things all the shit which had turned on her witch had turned cold & mean & callous & indifferent conflicted absurd & ridiculous out of all the damage all the pain inflicted all the lost dreams & dashed hopes all the sadness & sorrow & betrayals & broken promises all that which had been promised her (or in many ways not if that makes any sense at all) & would do all this all the way from day to dusk until she was sure everything & everyone was good & gone all done in a nice & neat controlled manner repetitive pattern draped& wrapped in a perfect little package her emotions & the madness behind stained glass curtains like everything else which had faded had faded away & faded off the dreams & the dust all stored up hoarded for no particular reason the hyperbole of loneliness of what it feels to be lost & abandoned done wrong in this absurd & abstract psalm this long gone song how we try to get along get on how we try to function in this bizarre thing we pathetically practically strangely somehow like to address & refer to as living as being as resembling something like the forgotten dream of existence.


2
The Supersaturation Level



the suburbs really are the land of the lost the land of the petty and trivial the land of the unusual usual the land of the rumor (land of the lawnmower) the land of the literal literally lacking in humor the closed-minded and insular the exact nature and derivation to the configuration of superstition the everything-must-go all-you-can-eat couple codependent addicted to gadgets and gizmos the still life going through the motions the quiet desperation turning from psychotropic to suicide ideations their false expressions and body language their first impressions and last impression which simply leads to a whole hell of a lot of blandness of mediocrity and resentment of passive-aggressive dysfunctional acting-out and role-playing in a no man's land of reactive-formation their routines and rituals become their religion their compulsion to one up their neighbor which becomes a part of and permeates the rotten core of their character their hallelujah higher-than-holy hypocritical version of happily-ever-after their obsessive he-said she-said which negatively niggardly helps them move ahead their mechanisms and contraptions of mediocrity and self-importance their not returning of phone calls their soulless souls their know-it-alls who don't know a thing at all smug and sure shallow and superficial their ridiculous forms of brainwash until they really got you believing in not believing in yourself fulfilling the self-fulfilling prophecy of some now you see 'em now you don't which keeps on building up building up and building up like exactly everything they taught you in 7th grade chemistry about the concept of supersaturation and if you add just one more particle how it will all break downand fall to the bottom knew one day i would be able to ascertain and apply all these scientific theories and principles to the absurd nihilistic palpable conscious core of everyday existence and upon further reflection can even understand why i spent a majority of my formative years in detention hall you wait as always for the rain to fall.


3
A Rather Bizarre Geological Hx Of America


tonight while my wife was kicking me out of our room cause she was watching the golden globe awards and borrowing one of her bananas i told her i refused to leave unless she told me Beethoven’s favorite fruit she of course said no i won't and went back and forth in one of our classic comical power-struggles until i got her to say begrudgingly against her will ba-na-na-na! she said it was awful and likened it to having to go to the grand canyon every year and hold onto her mom's hand and i said yeah kind of like niagara falls and when i left her in the flashing technicolor hanging and drying her newly shampooed ponytail over her pillow she said give me back my banana and went downstairs to open the refrigerator to take out some diet dr. thunder to watch the denver nuggets take on the utah jazz and man can't tell you how much i hate when teams do shit like that like move from new orleans to utah and don't even have the gall or gumption or even for that matter the where with all i mean in america is all it is about is business and don't even have the respect or sensitive and social significance to not even think of changing names from the new orleans jazz to the utah jazz i mean dang how many times have you caught a really great jam out around salt lake city mean they close down everything by 8:30 i mean even in the mad cold hills of midnights of montana when they do final call they'll even pour your beer in a nice plastic cup on the go for the road to wash down your corn dog as you watch carmelo drive and drain and take it to the hole.


4
Daze Of A Runaway


the creek
brings credence
cadence


clarity self-awareness
and real overall objective
perception and judgment

(something you will never ever
get if your life depended on it

from mankind
human nature)

something you learned sitting all day
on the outskirts of reno contemplating

alone on the truckee river
below heaps of holy hills

of used car lots & cactuses
crosses & campaign slogans

patient pensive
& introspective

all beautifully strangely
strung together

conflicted between image and
edifice and what they represented

returning home when the sun
went down and blank faded bulbs

took form and naturally flushed and
fluttered their bold letters on casinos

past old knitted women clumped together
walking their dogs for the sake of obedience

and lit lonely windows
of alcoholic anonymous

the bums of the mission
the dog races

and pawnshop owners removing guitars
& promise rings from display windows

while the loud and obnoxious
tag team of tourists came out

flashing their fangs
and classless clout

and you returned silent with head bowed
back to your beat down motel at the end

of the tracks of the
burlington northern

forlorn yet
never defeated

just trying to get along
just trying to make it...

5

Something In A Day



*
i slept on the wrong side of the bed
on the wrong side of my head

yet still miraculous yet
how seagulls wail in wind


*
on my desk...
aspirin, allergy medication,
old mugs of coffee, which
one to choose from?

dog walks in
with a grin


*
on the side of the refrigerator
receipt reads "wolf's den boiler burner service"
flyer for "stormy day procedures for parents and families"


*
night before holding onto son
rocking him on his rocker
and pushed my nose
hair right back in


*
on the subject of marriage...

today erica and i were having a deep discussion on tuna...
she's a bit of a tuna addict and even growing up in the bronx
had the habit and christened her with the nickname of hot tuna
because she loved it and suppose she's hot so much so when
i exposed her to different parts of the world she felt the need
and compulsion to sample tuna from all over from switzerland
to barcelona to the jewish quarter in sevilla to italia even the greek
islands and today in the late afternoon early dusk having absolutely
nothing to talk about asked her what was up with the ones they called
fancy albacore like do they live in special zip codes? provided and afforded
the opportunity for a better and more exclusive education? considered more
cultured and elevated? on a different level of socio-economic class and status?
more privileged and entitled? and when the fishermen catch them going out on
one of their very dangerous excursions and snatch them up and seperate
and divide them do they simply stop and put hands to face and point
and melodramatically exclaim o my gosh! that's definately a fancy
albacore! that one's gonna have to be in water that one in oil...


*
you start to think that you want to listen
to that one real true blue sportscaster

who takes everything personally
is hypersensitive and defensive
and always gets confrontational
and throws out ultimatums or
threatens to kill himself with
multiple personality disorder
and freaks out whenever
gets mentioned making
a name for himself...


*
couple versions of t.s. eliot

yo! yo! yo!
the women come and go
rapping of michael angelo

think he would have
loved austin
powers...


*
catching up with friends
from a long long long
time ago somewhere
back there in childhood
who turn out now
are investment
bankers as back
then the biggest

wild out of control
delinquents who
walked the face
of the planet
used to make
it a tradition to
always get us into
brawls and rumbles
behind movie theaters
get busted by dramatic
mothers who discovered
their drug lists of friends
who owed them dough
chased regularly by cops
during recess through
ball fields and crashing
with stolen cars through
fences fathers used to
always threaten were
gonna send to reform
school and apparently
from what the records
state just purchased
an estate out in
bedford hills, ny
for 4 million
dollars father
still the same
neurologist
and still
the same
half-crazed
argentinean
brothers and

sisters you
grew to love
and grew quite fond
of and still somehow
find myself very happy
for him as we used
to always say
how we felt
lucky and
amazed
that we
even made
it past the
age of 18


*
i want to date one of those
white suburban ladies or moms
who spends her days ripping off stores
think that would be a fine way to spend my day...


*
looking up villas
on the italian riviera
lugia, ballero, for when
i strike it big, even if i don't

if i do the first thing i'll do
will be to get a couple fresh
bagels with nova and fresh

veggie cream cheese with
the big chunks in it

then park my car
by the sea
listening to
sports radio

later on for the night
tangerine chicken
or a little bit up
the highway
towards
the cape
that
cheap
place
where
you get
that great
seafood
pad thai


*
gaining great pleasure
in repairing some of
the tree house

which fell
down in
the wind


a sort of redemptive quality
for all that shit all neighbor's sins


*
might inspire me to go out
to pick up a couple old
fashions fresh-cut

donuts on route 6
that doesn't accept
credit cards just cash


*
(i hate those people who have turned
indifferent all for the sake of attention
just a really poor pathetic excuse
and an even worse off institution)


*
out here they seem to take great pride
in their lawn and landscaping even
more than being nice to a neighbor
or kind to a stranger and may even
look at you cock-eyed offended
insulted if you look anywhere
in their direction almost as if
erecting their own little private
shrines and museums and
mausoleums and monuments
have even seen some of them

putting up plaques in front
of their houses to remind
everyone (to remind
themselves) of who
they are literal legends
of the mind perfect little
caucasian white saints alive?


*
want to do a nice exchange between those really annoying
middle-aged flabby blabbering ladies who do infomercials at
3 in the morning (stealing all the money of hard-working hygienists)
and the ones who do the porno; don't think it would be too far of a stretch...


*
an aphorism...

the only thing i find people to be consistent
at is being flakes and fuck-ups and
not returning phone calls (like some
sort of passive-aggressive borderline
show) where they somehow (make)
believe this makes them original

don't know never quite bought into that...

one needs enough money to travel...

aphorism #2

you learn from a hell of a lot of tough living and experience,
sorrow and suffering, and the contradictory and self-interested
frequent rude and vulgar nature of human nature and 'meanies'
that freedom, independence, and autonomy are the three most
important things towards functioning contented, happily, and within
the overall and basic fundamental realm of being and harmony, and
will do almost anything humanly possible, often even sometimes not
so human (as they are not too human or as nietzche said 'all too human')
deemed necessary towards anyone or anything, or symbol and form who makes
the effort to try and (make me conform) and take away or steal my ability to live,
coexist and thrive with kindness, compassion, self-respect and dignity in this life


*
in the middle of my stairs
i holler to my wife–"i love you!"
seems just as valid if not much much
more than anything else in this world


*
someone keeps on pulling that dangling
traffic light chord in the back of my skull


*
i trust far more the bad judgment of children




*
...ghosts have arrived way too early


*
[how to: make meringues
mend a broken heart
still have not found a cure
to the common cold apparently
not really that common at all]


*
new old beatles songs i have recently
fallen in love with once more while
listening with my son to
yellow submarine

1. lonely people
2. when i'm 64
3. it's only a northern song


*
frankenstein breathing heavily in the closet
honey you're snoring kept me up all night!


*
hey where do we keep that tiny spoon
for the bitter herosis for passover?
how do i keep on losing my belt?

*
do we carry our dx
with us to the afterworld?

or does it simply trail off
like hansel & gretel's breadcrumbs
fairydust, the remains of sloppy joe


*
seagulls back for their final round
and then disappear in the misty fog
to their dusky destination on the ocean


*
i wonder what the scores will be
later on in the night between
chicago and st. louis

giants at candlestick...


6
The Moon Which Refused To Move ~pitch for a children's story


1. a crescent moon on the loose still lying on the ground bunched in backyard
in a pile of scattered leaves in the morning and all day and noon as if it forgot
or couldn't find it's way back up to the sky and as much as this family tries
to get it up or get rid of it they cannot

2. trying to rake it up or sweep it up with a broom

3. some old maid tossing big soapy pails of water on it
even whipping out a thrasher to try and thrash it

4. old women from the beekeeping association trying to nab it with their butterfly nets

5. old men from some sort of audubon society very precisely looking down on it with their
binocolars

6. some young man in thick five-o'clock shadow and towel trying to shave to it

7. old gardeners pathetically absurdly trying to use some sort of leaf blower

8. look around befuddled and bewildered in denial and put a wheelbarrow on top of it

9. engineers pulling out all their different kinds of equipment
levels sledge hammers trying to measure it with a tape measure

10. boys on hands and knees as if trying to shoe it away as if playing marbles

11. little girls gathering around with their little chairs and little tables
and stuffed animals and having a tea party

12. the dog barking at it

13. bringing in a snake charmer in a turban

14. an eccentric father pulling on his bathing cap trying to swim over it

15. very serious and earnest men in tuxedos romantically playing violin

16. old timers trying to ballroom dance even tap dance with top hats and tails and canes on it

17. and then everyone just happily accepting it standing in their windows
silhouetted watching day turn to dusk to night lowering their blinds

18. cut to image of the crescent moon just sitting their
beaming solitary by itself getting brighter and brighter