the poetry that matters

Glen Lantz

Glen Lantz lives in Dubuque, Iowa. His work has appeared in or is forthcoming in 10K Poets Zine, Bad Marmalade, Clockwise Cat, the Curious Record, Deep Tissue Magazine, Heroin Love Songs, Madswirl, The Plebian Rag, Zygote in My Coffee, Poetry Now, and  the Dubuque Area Writer’s Guild 2009 Anthology Music & Dance.
Glen is also the managing editor of 2 poetry zines, Eviscerator Heaven and Deep Tissue Magazine.
You can find more of Glen’s work at: http://www.myspace.com/glenny_the_poet



death came on a Wednesday/ with the hunger of a lion/ we borrowed flesh against the machine to buy freedom and protective wings/ looking through the want ads/ searching for that girl standing by the bus stop/ the fragile fiction of the digital scream/ a Goliath in the doorway glancing inside the darkness/ nothing to my name except a warm tongue/ place my face into the wind/ come closer if you dare/ discover me make me new in your love/ save me from myself/


feed the flame between us gravitate above/ becoming more than two/ coming through with truth/ spinning dervish of wonder/ the beam shines brightly/ scales fall off from our eyes/ the thorns pulled from our sides/ our blood mixes with water/ we see more clearly/ no measure/ we are limitless/ like the sands too numerous to count/


we unfurl and hoist our sails/ jerk the bait from the can/ hook another/ flopping on the deck/ trying to breathe/ trying to birth into existence/ something more than this/ than this wretched life/ the charade that we are trapped in/ we want and need and struggle/ for the prizes of the foolish/ we beat our chest in savage display/ I beat you in the head with a shovel/ you fall down and die/ they come and lock me up/ write stories about the tragic events/ sell more ads in the paper/ more commercials on the television/ so you can buy I life that is not worth living/ so you can pretend that the new car gives life/ makes you better than others/


you dropped your winter gloves/ as the shadow passed through my soul/ we burned our bridges/ the gap grows wider/ as the wolves howl in the night/ we lean into the machine/ feeling it’s electricity/ the intuitive thoughts of the painter’s wife/ interfere with the reception/ she pins your flowers on the bestial wall/ the green and red blend into nothingness/ as the songs blare on into the night/ deceptive is her sweet demeanor/ after a couple of drinks she becomes a monster/ time is acrylic as it passes/ almost cryptic/


so much promise to be dashed against the rocks/ your ending was not what I expected/ from you I expect so much more/ maybe more than was possible/ my demands wore on you like heavy stones/ keeping you down with my burden/ I am sorry for that/ your pain was not my design/ I did not hatch plans for your suffering/ still this business of misunderstanding has left us apart/ growing farther and farther away from each other/ you and I in different directions/ each equally wonderful








tied up to the reaper/ fleshed and boned for the holiday/living on sweet water/ in your hand are three small stones/ father, son, and holy ghost/ they left us for an all night bender/ home alone without religion/ none for the worse when we judge the value/ sometimes our roots grow deeper into the soil/ when we are left to our own devices/


we want to be with you/ smashing the glass and stealing the stereo/ running through the streets setting fires/ turning over cop cars/ forsaken by the lamb/ you read the lines on my face like a roadmap to nowhere/ you know how to calm my evil flesh/ where the worms ate through/ their devilish designs are written on your palms/ grabbing me by the shirt collar/ shaking the life out of me/


I am like an exploded star/ my resources used up and depleted/ I have no need for remorse/ my path leads to Valhalla/ where the kings will cheer my exploits/ they know I have killed Greendale/ with the sword of many tongues/ they burn like fire as they cut through the air/  I’m not your wishing well/ you can’t find your future in me/ I have learned to run alone/ to take hold of Athena’s wonders/ she promises me a future of stone/ a future that thieves cannot steal/ a future that resists the temptation of rust/


the same as before/ and the other time too/ trouble each time/ with each and every line/ misconstrued, blued, and god damn rude/ there is no other way/ still want it all/ sex and a minor role/ on the Broadway stage/ it’s a Piccadilly circus and a day at the arcade/ leaving behind mouth, tits, and ass/ the cowboy hat in the corner/ chasing the bull to the bar/ where we drink screwdrivers and sing old songs from the 60s/ brown sugar and tumbling dice/ spinning wheels in the darkness/ just a name in an address book/ written on a yellowed page/


digging in the corner/ showing us his medals/ its all electric out there in the wasteland/ crushing hostility/ like the humidity and the rain/ waiting in a café/ murder growing wings in my mind/ among the brain salad surgeons/ praying to Jesus for another bone/ to pick my teeth with/ if he was right here I’d choke him with my own two hands/ with no way out on the factory floor/ they would stand and clap/ as he fell dead to the floor/ dead to you and me/ not knowing us like we know each other/


I’ve tried to kill the prophet many times/ a pale ghost leading me to a melancholy place/ the shape lingers in your mind/ I want to share with you my crisis/ look closely at my internal war/ see the tanks and guns that war within my mind/ becoming another/ the reflexive self that deconstructs/ my danger is a small city/ a simple nightly absurdity/ you have been captured by my disguise/ your inclusive definition swallows up everything/







You didn’t mind the taste of guilt/ the rose was old and faded/ your tears were all spit and shine/ still you found a reason/ to hang around/ lately the ends don’t come together/ they lost their reason for the favor/ we headed down the street/ one arm in the other/ you looked mad as hell/ standing with somebody else/ looking through my eyes/


I let you in/ little spots and all/ the black road and green tipped wave/ they sounded just like your brother/ she climbs out toward the house/ turning porch light on and left hook leading/ you stood there exploding/ in the center of it all/ with the spotlight on/ and dogs barking in strange languages/ I used to understand them all/ as we even it up later/ and prop it against the wall/ duct tape and barbed wire/ a few rusty nails/


a prayer to saint Anthony/ all the fools and children/ waiting for the thaw/ scratch my back and my fur flies/ drifting in the sweet wind/ the kindness leaves sooner or later/ sometimes in the morning/ sometimes in the afternoon/ mostly after a case of beer or a couple of bottles of whiskey/ then we see the devil/ the true one coming out/ gone are your manners/ they are dead on the table stabbed by the kitchen fork/


enough to overcome/ walking up and down/ two rubbers deep/ stuck in the mud/ dirty little soul/ dirty shorts and little pieces/ forget me not’s/ a small room/ blistered feet/ a conscience/ a daughter/ reasons we purchase at Wal Mart/ a quart/ a pint/ a liter/ thinking of the dead/ one at a time/ she needs more colors/ a pink and a blue/ drunk and pickled with red lights/ it’s not Christmas again/ the cops kicking down your door/ freedom of the brave/ lost in the doorway/ terror blossoms/ almost bearable/ almost a reason to go on/ one more day staring at the mirror/


I saw you the other day/ pumping gas in another guy’s car/ the guy you left me for/ at the gas station on Kennedy Road/ and then I was distracted/ two young things walking/ I watched them as they went down/ swaying back and forth/ down and down the road/ almost to a backbeat swing/ like Max used to play/ one swayed a little more than the other/ I think you know what I mean/ there was something more/ I stopped and asked her if she wanted a ride/ the other one looked disgusted/ I guess she thought she was the pretty one/ I wasn’t looking for pretty/ I was looking for a little more sway/ and I found it/






featureless attributes/ annihilation please/ solid gold and burning/ like the war/ so much more to give/as we steal from the giver/ feeding on the fried life/ greasy drippings we swallow down/ exposed by our hiding place/ getting under it all/ under the covers/ under time/ just plain under/ under the hard place/


pressing us further into the ground/ life grinds us against the stone/ self-constructed pain/ an ugly edifice/ stares you straight in the eye/ laying down the dust/ contemplating the curse/ all ready gone/ building yourself/ with the words of others/ laughing as you know the perfect/


long lived under the rock/ feeling helpless/ crying for the ghost/ the corpse rotting in the back room/ poker chips spilled on the floor/ and shell casing scattered/ the evil aim comes through/ physics give way to hot metal/ tussled falling shadow/ just the midnight song/


finding you in the forest/ butchering us all/ as we clutch at our prizes/ spouting a rosary to dead ears/ I live and breathe in your side/ make a home in your ribs/ struggle against your beating heart/ it is jealous/ doesn’t want me there/ fuck it/ I’m the master of illusion


fades to quaintness/falling off/ into nothingness/ again we cannot see the bloom/ Eli’s in the garden/ straw hat and overalls/ an old garden hoe in his hands/ his hands are weathered and worn/ pulling up weeds/ he puts his love into the rows/ his back into the soil/ a red hot ingot of toil/ the plants are his children/ he calls them by name/ each bends in deference/ they know of his love for them/ he has loved them since they were a seed/ because of his great love, they gladly surrender/ to the touch of his hand/ it a hard life/ without sadness/ he labors in joy/ his hands were made for peace and violence/ he understands the nature of ways/


I have learned from Antoine/ how to seal my demons/ pack them in small plastic bags/ keep them safe from wet weather/ do not try to follow/ there are no available rooms/ and no one wants you here/ get back out on the streets/ selling your soul to those greedy fuckers/ you know the ones/ they flash five dollar bills/ from the safety of their Buicks/ get in and go for a ride/ ask them about their wife and children/as they fuck you/ one more time/ remember it’s not free/ nothing ever is






she’s a vegetarian/ has issues with blubber/ she’s saving the whales one dollar at a time/ she said so in her internet blog/ a Jupiter’s child with sunglasses/ I see her in the bookstore/ her beads hanging down/ looking at the history books/ her face is all the rage/ walking up and down the isles/my dysfunctional salivation/ as if with a ghostly purpose/ killing me with her abrasive smile/ pretending to look at the books/ sneaking little looks/ dirty little looks/ standing here beside her/ I’m poking her in the side with a textbook on parapsychology/ rubbing up against her/ seeing her naked in my mind/


her vagina has legs/ they crawl out from under her/ they carry more weight than thought possible/ it’s a grope in a dark corner/ fuck your tender sensibilities/ you are a victim of your success/ I peel from you your humanity/ I place it on the shelf/ your are not a human being/ you are an object for my depraved illusion/ I purchase you with heavy breathing/ my fear is in your toothy cunt/ you swallow me and ask for more/ all smiles from ear to ear/


an imperfect medium/ our true feelings upload with difficulty/ even in this special analysis/ the pale ember of life/ I take her to dinner/ she orders sushi/ I tell her sushi is meat/ she says some things are better left unsaid/ wanting me to pay for fairness/ the peril beneath the surface/ like a distant bourbon note/ shoving spikes into her feet/ I place my fingers upon the dreadful/ and say a little prayer/ to my personal demon/as you reproduce your fraudulent values on an old mimeograph/


no matter how many times I expel you/ you always return disguised as a clown/ I have sent letters to the Bishop/ asking how to make your exorcism more lasting/ but he doesn’t recognize my transmission/ obviously he is in league with the devil/ my attempts to disentangle have been fleeting/ filled with ruinous consequences/ rancid markings on the tablecloths of time/ you are a stain upon my conscience/ I live for others and you only live for death/ your teeth are stained with the blood of innocents/ I have made a promise to myself/ to never channel you as a muse ever again/ for you bring me only despair/ my eyes have seen through you too much ugliness/ too many painful scenarios/ I kill you by killing myself/ die you nasty demon, die/

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