string nine

if your words
could be simple
as a clamshell

*

to open
and close
as a day

*

you do realize
I am talking
millions of years

*

millions of years
to achieve
calmness

*

I am only
handing you
a piece of string

*

no one’s here now
and no one
will be here later

 

 

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Artificial Intelligence

The term implies there is a genuine article
and we are it. The paragon must be five
paltry senses that only vaguely understand each other,
wired together into a sort of bickering council.
Because our say-so reality closes us in,
closes us under itself like a bell jar
so clear we can no longer even see it,
because we die in that protectorate of the senses,
we believe past any rational leap that nothing,
no one will ever get past us. Evolution broke the mold.
It is the most artificial intelligence anyone could imagine.

Seagulls

the seagulls attack the more normal birds
and that’s the new level of savagery
that’s the new normal
on the boardwalk facing the rented ocean
it’s the same as everywhere else
a child drops her hot dog
a goon-squad with claws closes in
instantly as hunger
screaming like a bloodthirsty crowd in a war
and who doesn’t know by now
there is never anything but crowds in a war
the ocean rolls its tumblers over
there is always some animal setting the level
of universal panic for the rest of us
our dream of utopia is disproven by seagulls
Q.E.D.: seagulls
somehow the gunman posting to Facebook
is the same, the same as this
all the other birds stand back and wait
they watch the horrorshow existence of the gulls
they are afraid of the hooked beaks
those screams like metal claws dragged across more metal
eyes like those of an absinthe drinker
soulless along the water at night
waiting for any victim with a soft throat
the ocean (their mother) is depositing fresh kills
rows of dead things down on the beach for them
bits of crabs are broken up marionettes
all sorts of other skeletons with gobs of meat on them
but it’s not really good enough for the gulls
they want what you have, your undead food
so often decorated to look alive
that human food that expresses its desire to be eaten
the way it looks on menus, posters, billboards
pleading with us like would-be lovers
that’s what they want
the pigeons watch the gulls from the shadows
they wait in the dark corners of buildings
or the foul alleys between them
for any little snippets the seagulls might leave
they rarely do leave anything
you can’t tame them, these seagulls
they will never be your pets
they will never perform tricks
for society or anything else
their collective mind is mad like the ocean
and it is all one hovering mind
Niceness is not part of nature
it is our little doodle on top of it
They rarely do learn anything
that they don’t already know
The nicer, normal birds just watch
the carpe diem birds who are not guilty
you walk back to your quiet hotel
it’s after-season, so the gulls don’t haunt
the parking lot that much
they don’t devil-bomb the balconies
in the off season, won’t waste their time
they know the rhythms of the ghost town
plunked down on the ocean
You turn the t.v. on in the quiet room
there are human gulls all over the screen
you turn it back off and the shadows
of the hotel room make their own quiet noise
this shadow noise is acceptable
the only sanity is a quiet room
four walls were the greatest invention of all time
and the cool quiet of this pillow
whoever invented this
I love you