I Went to an Interview and all I got was this stupid Job.

Personhood requires a self assessment, where one takes inventory of the habits and traits which define their character and contrasts them against the actions they’ve performed, analyzing if they intersect, or precede in parallel destinies.  Without this subjective judgement, one would be rendered blank and become vulnerable to a society which defines existence via plain language. 

Such essence appraisals are encouraged in the elementary years. Demonstrated by guidance counselors, invading classrooms to disperse personality tests, inviting adolescent minds to decide whether they prefer to, “work indoors,” or “follow instructions to finish a task.” In the end, teaching the students to finesse their test results into their own “brand.” Honing the idea of self to symbols on a page. 

In a market economy, it’s vital that consumers understand they’re a brand. Being a brand necessitates advertisements to showcase how they might benefit society, at large. This vital step forfeits gumption for gains and if executed well, interjects the Noble Lie. The greatest example of this feat being a Job Interview. 

Within offices, advocates for employment, swivel their arms and take notice of the subtle fluctuation from moist armpit to dry flesh, both chilled by central cooling, designing the air to function like it was inside a morgue. Reanimated corpses assure the undertaker they’re alive, addressing the death inquiry with quick answers, to offset the slack-jaw-monotone plaguing their voice.

“What’s that smell?” 

*applicant sniffs*

“What smell? Something must’a died in your ceiling. Not me, though…I am very much alive.”

Gentrified Global Warming

Storm clouds challenged the skyscraper’s attempt

At censorship,

Posting their gray scale 

Above the CEO’s important view.

The type of view 

Laborers risk their lives

To clear smudges

From the window glass. 

Trees dropped their seeds 

And hijacked peripherals 

Acclimated to city plants 

Blending in with manufactured wood,

Bordering storefronts 

And gentrified apartment complexes,

But familiar twirls 

Alluding to helicopter blades 

Suggest the samaras fall 

Relates the human experience

To nature’s survival. 

Two squirrels scampered out from

An overturned trash bin.

The ping of their nails 

On the receptacle’s aluminum

Reverberated a steel drum melody,

As they escaped up a tree. 

Two blue jays grew hostile

To the rodent’s presence 

And chirped falsetto peeps, 

Warning them 

To take their leave. 

An uber driver 

Dropped her client off 

In front of the tree. The client 

Exited the car, heard animal noises

From above. She arched her neck and looked up

To identify the sounds. 

Sunlight broke through the storm clouds, overtook her vision 

And stained the combatant’s profiles. She peered up again, 

But blocked the sun out with her hand as it began to rain.

*This Magic Moment*

The labor shortage 

Allows a city employee, 

To lower their head, oblivious to passing strangers

To aim their leaf blower

And push debris toward the curb, where a street sweeper 

Collects our cigarette butts,

dead foliage,

hair follicles,

receipts,

bottle caps,

paint flecks,

toilet paper scraps 

And lip skin gnawed apart in strip search fashion, 

Building the Wasteland 

for the whimpering end,

To begin again and again, et al. 

A technique to rename Hyperreality

As 

Politicians 

Claim that 

unemployment benefits 

Sway potential hires to remain infatuated

With their couch cushions and sitcom reruns. As opposed to 

Directing trash to its reincarnation, or

Acquiring spit wads, springing forth from loose tongues 

Blabbering about the imperfect conditions 

Experienced by parishioners, 

Following the Copernican Principle.   

Comet tears direct 

A leveler’s precision 

To balance a drying jello-mold.

Foundations wobble and

Dictate available work

And insist sure-footing isn’t shaking

From centuries 

Of humans adjusting their sleep schedules

To the Industrial Age. Tossing

And turning. Turning and tossing

And peering over at the BLUE SCREEN OF DEATH

Alerting them about another beautiful stranger, 

Past their prime, hoarding the stones 

We desperately need to build infrastructure. 

2.

Mosquitoes hatch and their fresh bodies 

Travel to open windows,

Land on mesh screens. 

They spend a quarter of their lives

Locked on boundaries,

Peering inside at the blood 

Which sustains them,

Unaware the only reason 

Their species survives

Is because there’s so many 

Of them available to die.

Lounge Wear

Exposed by

Loungers present their hips for suicide.

Typical Americana, lawn furniture 

Censors flesh in stripes

And organizes a sunburn 

To trail where restrictions flourish.

Different architecture disguises 

Front of the house aspirations.

Lawn gnomes posed in angry side-eye.

Doormats covered with generic clever comments.

Live.

Laugh.

And love. Belongs above the oven,

For Hell must be quite the BBQ.

At the bus stop, weeds align the sidewalk cracks

And transfer their seeds to laborers 

Solidifying the plant’s doom,

By walking on

And getting to 

Where they’re going. 

The 

Sun

Sets and projects 

Its purple prison walls

And promises to be humanity’s prisoner

Until boredom becomes the norm.

Shadow breaks as the bus drives away

Everyone is left to stare at their phones

As if they had nowhere else to look.

Trash Bags forgotten at the Bus Stop

1.

The Bereaved were outfitted

In their standard black costumes and stood before the soldiers 

Who bordered the Officer’s casket in Red, White & Blue. 

A hot mic captured the priest, presiding over the funeral,

Take a drink from his water bottle and announce, “BLECH!

That tastes like it came from the tap.”  

The soldiers ignored the priest.

They appeared to ignore everyone

Except their orders. 

Rifle tips balanced along their clavicles and the priest

Mentioned,

“Your gestures remind me of the Signs of the Cross.”

He cracked his knuckles.

“I don’t think that’s an accident.” 

2.

As a nation,

we struggle with domestic politics. 

As an Empire,

it’s much easier

to impose your will

under the guise of liberty.

2 ½. 

I was walking downtown

when a gnat flew into my eye.

I blinked and killed it.

Re-dux: Savior Complex

Ajax compensated for his loneliness by posturing his lips to Ohm in silence. 

Boredom enticed him to lapp his tongue and taste the bourbon smell 

emitting from his voice. 

Ohm. He began, simplified his thoughts and transcribed them to a social media post.

Establishing Ajax’s intoxication. 

Roll on Snare. Illuminate the laughter sign. 

Life becomes to anticipate chaos. 

Saving face to form comb-overs 

Stealing a Cheshire grin to reflect missing follicles

In shop windows. 

Life weaponizes becoming.

Hallucinations elicit memories 

And place familiar faces atop homeless

Quadrpeds. 

Ajax stands in line at the bank, watches the female teller

Activate her customer service training.

Which emphasized pity disguised as tolerance 

To placate lonely white males,

Confusing remuneration for affection.

Taking Last Names,

Replacing them with a savior complex. 

Peasants belong to the same life 

As royalty 

And mutts

And Audrey Hephburn 

And suicide by Ajax.

2.

blood as life 

intrigues the loud-mouth. blink before the scope 

eyeing reel to reel 

cellular silence. 

Mama bird utilizes his crown

for her nest. Perches an egg

Against the King’s thorn. 

Winds filter through railings 

Styled to praise 

Art-deco fixtures. 

Waves as moments 

In time. In our time. 

A willingness to explore

Takes the Robin’s egg 

To the sidewalk below. 

Baby blue to cataracts gray.

Justice would’ve found the shell useless

After human touch anyway. 

Such anti-Faustian routines

Demonstrate why Protoplasm 

Cracked under its own assurance.

To explain how life fails 

In describing itself.

Edges for Disco Dancing

I found a mirror, proceeded to hold it like a plot device 

And marched the hallway to reflect characters.  

The innocent acknowledged their bodies  

With glances they placed on teachers too. 

A charlatan crossed their presence 

Beyond the mirror’s glass,

By pausing below the light shade

Dirty with dead insects and dust,

Casting their shadow 

To the golden frame. 

I dipped the front end

Underneath the peak of my door jamb 

And hung the mirror 

Above an end table

Where I keep loose change. 

Pounds

And

Pounds

And 

Pounds 

Mingle with uneven spaces

Like constellations discovering pockets 

To hide their truth,

Or all of Michigan’s bridges empty 

Except for concrete and what else

I refuse to know.

simple enough.

1.

He lifted his elbow off the car window jamb,

Symmetrical creases trailed his forearm in testament to self-flagellation.

Worshipping open air 

For lungs

And empire opportunities 

For insects. 

She barricaded her chest with an argyle sweater vest.

Lint and dandruff appeared visible in the navy blue squares,

But failed in recognition atop the yellow squares.

The disappearance reminded her of driving on county roads

From the city to farmland,

Where the stars seem to appear out of nowhere. 

He opens her window.

Air rushes into the cluttered space and steals a white string

From off her left shoulder. It circulates inside a cyclone 

Before her eyes 

And scoots out the window,

Taken by the wind. 

2.

Immediate threats congregate in dirt piles, organized to make room 

For parking lots. Halting entry to Nature’s back-door slumber party.

Disregard innuendos. These are to be retired and buried where vet

Clinics hide the corpses of Family Pets and roadkill.

Around Town and the Moon Too

Don’t trust poetic types who falsify pulse as weakness.

Why situate dance with heartbeats? 

Investigate when the cracked sidewalk hosts a pulse on its ledge.

Toenails singing like tap-plates and the pain is there to remind them of death. 

Skip that balance to an ordinary sandwich shop

Where extraordinary descriptions of soul splendor are standard for wage earners on lunch break.

Think:

A whale bragging about swimming to an ant drowning in toilet water.

Consciousness functions without purpose during slumber. 

I often dream like a web-app streaming only commercials. 

Lunch hour ends and everyone is almost home,

But it’s the work hour where a minute feels like an eternity

And wage earners stare past the forest of foreheads to the automatic double doors that refuse to open for an elderly woman pushing a cart full of groceries weighing more than her and they signal to her telepathically,

“We’re all voiceless, helpless and trapped under bright lights.”

late stage capitalism’s midwestern farm

cell tower stranded in the grass plains

stands erect 

before a pink sunset as chemtrails style capital I

Up high

In the sky

cows alert the farm about strangers 

by announcing the only word in their lexicon 

warning of 

the 

amish 

careening with traffic 

in their horse and carriage 

who ignore the fantasies 

late stage capitalism 

gifted to contemporary oath keepers 

but there’s no place 

amazon won’t deliver to

including dirt roads 

taking on mud qualities

during dirty spring 

leading to americans 

living behind signs 

reading

no trespassing 

seclusion breeds contempt

for oneself

and

their lonely offspring

created the internet

it’s simple out there 

because it has to be