Tag Archives: Len Kuntz

Mother’s Boyfriend

Mother’s boyfriend has a twist in his lips, a burp in his eyes. He prefers everything cherry, thinks he knows the moon better than the astronauts. If there is leftover pie, he will use it Jackson Pollock style on the bedroom … Continue reading

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Breakfast in Bed

My love is trying to mug my larynx, puree my breath with his Shaman’s fork and a bloody rabbit’s foot dangling from his puffed chest. But I remind myself: this is merely breakfast in bed. Or a holiday. An exclusive … Continue reading

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Vaudeville

You get lost in the netting of another spare night, insomnia absurd, this room making too many house calls, cat calls, calling 911 for an operator that never answers. The nightstand has a beef with the lamp. The TV turns … Continue reading

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Mood Ring

The trees in your eyes have withered, lost their last leaves. Even the termites are foraging elsewhere. If you speak at all, the sounds kill themselves upon falling off the edge of your lips. You play black music all day, … Continue reading

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A History of Soup

It had nothing to do with forensics. At least I don’t think. It was all about soup. Soup and the smell of grass clippings, the garbled sunshine and the slick salesperson who showed up that summer carrying an armful of forged … Continue reading

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People Holding

The ant colony is taking up too much space on this bed. Everything is so busy. Dizzy. The color of Jupiter or Mars. The color F sharp. My father’s coarse fingers belong to a carpenter whose job it is to … Continue reading

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Polar Split

I find bits of my son dribbled like stains across the basement floor where he broke in half in front of me him already a redwood at age fifteen bark and wood splitting hot shards shooting everywhere as if thunderstruck … Continue reading

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Under

There is no real way to heal water. Miracles are wasted on the shores and mad men with no one to believe them. Still you drop under the waves, the crispness like a full peeling off of the skin. You … Continue reading

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For a Day and Another

Another night and this terrible lust consumes me, fervent and appalling, thirsty for the bottle, willing to eat glass, airplane crash, take one for the losing team. It’s like swimming in fish guts or human entrails, oil in the eyes … Continue reading

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Remember to Exhale

No one will look up and so the baby goats go on dying. It’s a bright slaughter without bleating, nothing blundered or salvaged. And those broken blades in your eyes? They glisten instead of weep while the lost stroller encircles … Continue reading

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What My Mother Told Me

I wish she’d never told me about the hole in the floorboards where our veins were kept, the rancid ground squalling like a belly of slaughter, the rest of the family limp noodles glued to the walls, wondering why the … Continue reading

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Tide Pool

This is how it’s done, you floating like light inside the cool swirl of an aimless tide pool, you a girl again, giddy and reckless, thirteen or thirty it doesn’t matter, your hair coiled from salt, thoughts untangled for once, … Continue reading

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Flotsam

You are busy polishing cabochons that don’t need it, busy rewriting the broken music of sea shells cracked underfoot. Skyward, gulls scream for pity while the sun shimmies behind cloth clouds no different than a magician making fortune disappear. The … Continue reading

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On Cisco Beach

This house, still a stranger, whispers, Relax whispers, Trust me though you’ve never thought to question a building before. You press your fingers against the window like a lover testing the heat of a pillowcase or stubbled cheek and watch … Continue reading

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Precocious

You’re a quick study, which is necessary for survival, but one day you learn there are no real nightmares, just the things that never end, bindings on your ankles, tossed over, no need for a shipwreck or sinking when it’s … Continue reading

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Tease

To bleed out on this exact spot, to learn the honesty of blood, what a gift that would be, dead before your full bloom, petals sticky and still tucked before unfurling, sprouts of pubic hair nodding small whiskers on white … Continue reading

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Didactic

We’ve buried ourselves inside an insistent drip where everything is blurred, fragile and shattered, like a church for soul scratchers or orphaned clouds. It’s the science of omission, a collision of blank space. When I fold myself again, logic adjusts … Continue reading

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A.M. Expired

Here I am again, time-stamped expired, a sour emulsion, like an ashtray wish rising up from beneath the irises. Even the moon forgets to pirouette, her hollow bones nailed to the souls of so many tree stumps. In the barren … Continue reading

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The Clarity of Despair

Wrap me in sticky cellophane, make it gritty and obscene. Drop me in a black sea without bottom where every dead fish knows my name. You don’t even need a reason. I won’t float or flinch. I’m right here, a … Continue reading

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Valediction

I draw a circle around nothing and claim it, let the sadness rope me back. We’re a perfect couple after all, black on black, slack as a noose under a broken bulb, ladder with a rickety step and sideways gait. … Continue reading

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Witch Hazel

February, so uncouth, unkind, a month meant for lovers, snowmelt ruddy with stones and wrappers and unclaimed feces. Air thick like a question caught in the throat, a balloon unable to ascend. Our child’s eyes pull back the covers, tell … Continue reading

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Smooth

That night I collected dust between my teeth, sucked the chalk deep into my lungs, letting the grit settle and clog all airways. It may have been murder, might have been suicide. You never were one for opinions. That night … Continue reading

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The Joy of Being Missed

If only because the babies need you. Though the rosebushes need you, too. The bruises need you. Open-air burglaries need you. Mealtime belching needs you. Barricades. Blockades. What-looks-like-Borscht-but-isn’t needs you. Bleeding-between-the-legs needs you. The Before-it-started needs you. The But-that-wasn’t-me-it-was-someone-else-My-cousin-Tommy-maybe needs you. … Continue reading

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Why Has the Music Stopped?

And since we are speaking of love stories, notice that the alligators decimated dessert and have tossed their bloody napkins in the swamp where we used to swim. Yesterday you waltzed while I walked deadbolt into traffic. You spoke ekphrasis, … Continue reading

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The Back of My Throat

Today I am desperate for love again, a toyless toddler, a junkyard dog gnawing on its chains. This sidecar rain wants no part of me. The old eagle shivers in its elevator nest. The trees sob and moan, their limbs … Continue reading

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