Barstool Confidential

It doesn't matter how good the band sounds,
there's always a damn pool game going on.
I'm just trying to maintain on this barstool,
looking up into the neon
and wondering why these crows
are flying north
into a constellation of plastic silver stars.
I track their circular flight.
Finally, after my third Tanqueray,
I have to turn away.
I've been trying to give all these things on the ceiling
a name of their own
but they just won't hold still.
There's a dark side to this life
and I've found my little corner,
just holding on so I don't turn to smoke
or fall into the linoleum abyss.
Its dizzying up here.
And when I see all those crows
flying north, I fear
that Heaven is Emptiness,
a place where the crows never arrive,
where the future stalls out,
where the past is all we can claim.
The sight of low hanging stars,
small change, wet bills on the bar
and La Bamba pounding off the stage
is not enough.

Hear the cue ball
banking and clicking loud?
It goes on and on like that,
round and round
like the crows and the stars
until the 8-ball drops.

Recently added poems

Hyannis, 1982
from Bass River Press
Cultural Center of Cape Cod, Inc.

drawer of hearts
from Dash #14, 2021

Way Out West
from Trajectory #21, 2020

September, 2014
from Trajectory #21, 2020

On Dad’s Hundredth Birthday (2018)
from Trajectory #21, 2020

The Moments
from Lummox #9, 2020
Lummox Press

Bud In Cans
from Last Call, Chinaski ! Lummox Press 2020
Lummox Press

Death Bed Blues
from Pinyon #29, Spring 2020

Anytime Now
from Muse #33, Spring 2019
Muse on Facebook

No One Notices
from Blueline #40, 2019

When the Fog
from Blueline #40, 2019

Flying into Storm
from Blueline #40, 2019

For One Thing
from Blueline #40, 2019

Real Poetry
from Last Call, 2018

One Night in Pasadena
from Hanging Loose #110, 2018

Seven Voices
from Hanging Loose #110, 2018

New Bedford
from Hanging Loose #110, 2018

from Earth's Daughter #92, 2018

from Trajectory #15, Fall 2017

Moving To Pennsylvania
from Trajectory #15, Fall 2017

Running Bases
from New Letters Vol. 68, Nos. 3 & 4, 2002
The Curators of the University of Missouri

St. Germaine District, Paris, 1949
from Rattle #16, Winter 2001
The Frieda C. Cox Foundation Inc.