K-Stew’s Dream Sequence


“To realize that all your life,

all your love, all your hate, all your memories, all your pain,

   it was all the same thing. It was all the same dream,

a dream that you had inside a locked room,

a dream about being a person.”

-Rust Cohle

True Detective


Kristen, who are you wearing tonight??

Amelia Earhardt.


And is that necklace Cartier??

Its OJ Simpson’s smashed up windshield

and a pair of gloves that don’t fit.


May I ask who your lovely companion is tonight??

A broken record I’ve made into a dinner plate.

Cold cocks me at the after-party, leaves

me for a new pair of jeans.


And any tips for the fans who might wanna do what you do someday??

It might sound a little backwards, but it’s like

when you want your cell phone to work right—

dress Amish.

My secret…

eat sheep’s brains to horde their powers.

Got my start gorging on a crash of rhinos, at least

that’s how I learned to fly.


You and the You Across from You… a self portrait

Self Portait of the Human Condition



You and the you across from you

devour the minutes like stopwatches

taming eyes at the recording apparatus,

we multiply.


With every play reanimate, however

hardly Nietzschean vampires siphoning gas tanks,

brown toothed and giddy

in the last orange hours of apocalypse.


But indeed, we the undead,

even before traffic lights

go black, before foraging WaWa

for canned beans by match light.


You and the you next to you

do not dwindle towards zero, instead

record and upload zombie self

from living room shelf before the world ends

ending the world.

Gnash back at the camera, your eyes explain

your teeth, a bear trap I didn’t know

would turn me into one of you.


But after all, nothing new,

not long ago convulsing hordes

avalanched the sidewalks with shuffle steps, window shopped,

broke nails on chopsticks

gnawing orange chicken,

grunts of approval ‘til next meal,

until we saw the sacred in cyber space.


Hallelujahs shook arcades of the fresh cathedral

with deposits digital from individuals gone underground,

upload passing notes on what it was to be separate,

absolute, existing alone.

But they echoed

And they echoed

And they echoed gnashing teeth

until you and the you across from you

devour the minutes like stopwatches taming eyes at the recording apparatus,

we multiply.

Future Primitive



They promised us jet packs

instead all we got are these stupid phones.

Burn day light batteries by the soft glow

of our smug faces,

but if you need a burrito

I’m the unshowered oracle you have at home.



into a tv dream of fall cardigans, mock turtle,

gray stitch of evening wear perfect for a night on the town

as a nap on the couch. $200.00

if the commercial reminds you of a classier grandpa


instead of the drunk who became ancestor

refusing doctors a hack at his other foot.


And by god

where are the robots,

iron Neanderthals to do the laundry, crush dishes accidentally

with manacles for palms?

I fancied a future where families dressed

to the neon best

wrapped group hugs ‘round contraptions bawling sprockets:

adolescent circuitry at odds with robot law.


Instead, clothes still come in one fashion

per item, no shape shifting nanofibers tailored by our minds,

oh, but the success they’ve had

inducing automatons to cry.


Witness this by the odorless interface, conduit of cell phone towers

to touchscreens, celebrity retweets

ignite rafters of this open air mine.


Yowl and snivel,

sure, me too.

Grinds my gears by the eye sockets

like waking dreams totally recalled. Levi’s,

maybe Apple ads, unsolicited tender access touch my special place:

Memories of first kiss jpeg

renders a weep over adverts

pimping straight leg pairs of jeans.

…For Pop




Keep it

just over the berm, no,

further, beyond the punched out bicuspids of Kandahar.

If there’s enamel to be scraped

do it on the far side

of mud walls until smoke rises like a preteen in fits—

in short bursts of sporadic fire on the other end of a television

clambering to tell vapid tales

of concussive blasts—

an echo of a telegram, dead

by the time it reaches, acres clear of nodding infantry,

as if poolside by poppy plants.


It’s best to keep it

somewhere else.


Nope, not gonna’ get rope-a-doped

back into the material world of gunplay.

The hack-hacking

of another joking broken soldier unloading.


in the same ditch he finds his counterpart:

strokes from the cleft of the ear across,

shrapnel upending clean butcher slices

returning his pallet of bones to the stars they rose in.


This is not what sells. They say

if it bleeds it leads, but they insist upon ketchup.

Not the amber glow either of us were looking for.

We keep it locked in safety deposit boxes patrolled by Swiss guards

plucking chocolates

from a golden tray.

Back from Beirut


You can tell a hooker

whatever lies you like.  Become an anthropologist

dining at the corners

of her open mouth.


You tell her you’ve come back

from seeing the world, a journalist

if it suits you. Grope her gray ass

pock-marked like moon landings in the yellow hours

of your parent’s living room, brimming

with toys.


Your half-brother, 18 years your younger,

is 6.  She unzips your pants to the tune

of his Fischer Price accordion she kicks

away black heels, shooing off teddy bears

like jackals.


You invent a real estate license, confessing success

on a handshake for the family time-share. And,

even before you left the States, that

you were a generous son

between puffs up her skirt.


What’s finished is over.

You offer a glass of water and a chance

to watch TV, a break from the bump and grind.


Her palms still glistening,

I’ll leave you to your unpacking,

it would seem

you’ve still got much left to do.

Hang ’em High

When missile parts are found

bound for North Korea on a miner’s pass,

carving submerged stretches of the Panama Canal, wrath

silent as a Snowden redux, we

may never discern why. Whimsical armageddon

gauging Oahu? Or plainly, ballistic tests

set for islands depopulated

at the behest of dictators who wish seagulls

would go bang?


But Zimmerman’s spellbound beauty

will forever be a tale of a man

and his gun. That fragile solitude of American oblivion

we discharge the same in rap songs entrepreneurial

as dust caked country Broncos

where only the west

has won.


Shoot first into the starched mist,

where humid hoodies cling like

little sisters, because the winner

is always the living who deem those shot dead

merciful from an afterlife, if merely anthropologists

speaking through artifacts, now only acrid animals above a mantle.

So hang ‘em high, the Seminole and Apalachee

tangled in Florida branches

of the state’s great Slash Pine.

Take the Day

There should be a holiday for all the dumb-dumbs

the nit-wits, nincompoops, and harlots,

half-pints and hiccups—

turned full pints, business executives,

pilots, and professors.

One day for the re-construed connoisseurs of guffaw

and lager.


And how about a holiday from the hangovers?

From the hang nails and further cavalier trifles

pinched at the steaming corners of all

half-baked days.


Let’s take a week

for those common American monsters

who fluff couch pillows on Christmas Eve

before the tree lights go dim,

long after half siblings

and step-parents cast themselves upstairs.


There should be a holiday for all the scarves dropped

on train tracks,

a day for bent tickets

swollen hands

tender digits

as they scour down from the platform

and fetch a baby blue

Father’s Day accolade.


A vacation

from that worst kind of racism, the dull rub

of when it’s just too hard to tell.  Holiday

from the tin roll

of trolling earbuds, a shivering zip up

the escalator ricochet—

exhale into Ft. Totten’s red line midnight transfer chill.


A day off for Batman, for Oprah, for the blue pulse

of wall socket volts, a vacation for the ball players

and the varicose veins.


And for Atlas, who

on the first day of March

simply collapses

like a six pack, dusted in the sun’s orange evening shade.


I recommend a mental health day

for fitness trainers

exhumed from the coughing hulk of once leviable

Houston bodies, juggling night classes on Nabokov and tax law.

Slack skinned Saturday night gargoyle like a wing

over Georgetown libraries.


Take flight, take care to do no wondering

and just stare.  Leave the cupboards bare and the car horns dead,

especially if the turn sharpens up ahead.


For the teachers who bartend,

the students who strip,

the plaster on the terrace

of a Disney cruise ship.  For the unsolved murders

to the nose on your face.  For god sakes

take the day.

Just as a side note

I’m finding the ending pretty cheesy.

I’m shooting for poem aimed at those of us

who have changed our lives and worked hard,

but now deserve a little relaxation… a break from the world.

Any suggestions would be appreciated