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Byron Coley


amidst my dreams

i licked yr pussy
so long and so hard

that a halo of steam
rose from its glorious depths

and hovered over yr belly
like a smoke ring

pulled by castro's gentle lips
from a twenty dollar cigar


driving six hours
along this length
of hard-packed shit
and sand

it is impossible
to not have yr head
fill with visions
of utter carnage

every tree
seems to hold
a cadaver, swinging
from its branches

organ meat
dropping from the sky
on everyone
passing underneath

every mile
of sun-soaked crap
seems colder than
a penguin's black ass

the warmth here
is not human
is not a comforting blanket
is not a lover's embrace

the warmth here
is the last breath of life
is the biochemistry of rot
is the falseness of an enemy's smile

have hearts ever worked in this place?
have they ever collided to make something beautiful?
have they ever done anything except pop in disgust?
i think not

i mean
my heart has worked here
on occasion
but never for anything of this place

even as i watched my father die here
my tears were not of florida
they flowed for versions of my father
that had existed elsewhere

when he came here he was already dead
in so many ways
and one cannot mourn a spirit
that departs from here

it would be bullshit
because anywhere is better
hell is better
and heaven couldn't be any worse

but i am here
and i am alive
because i live in the minds
of those who know me

and not one of those motherfuckers
is here
which's probably
all for the best


the music of yr voice
trailing into oblivion

the incredible wetness
of spring's arrival

the feel of yr fingernails
raking down my back

chunks of ice
in the river's still-frigid water

these shocks that stir me
cannot all be products

of my writhing


i feel like a cabdriver
a recent immigrant
unsure of the city's landscape
terrified of making a mistake
afraid of what the answer might be
but not wanting to show it
turning to ask his passenger
where it is
she would like to go
from here


Byron Coley is an archivist and writer living on an old farm in Western Masschusetts. He has been an editor at a wide variety of cultural magazines over the past quarter century, and has written books on topics as disparate as the films of Chuck Norris and the politics of cunnilingus. He is currently operating as ghost editor of the ecstatic peace poetry journal, as well as running a few record labels, Glass Eye Books, the Ecstatic Yod Collective, and the New Grass Center for Underground Culture. His wife and kids claim to fully suppport his next big project, which involves an erotic webite. We'll see about that.

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