the poetry that matters

Peter Schwartz

Peter Schwartz is a painter, poet and writer. He's also an associate art editor for Mad Hatters' Review. His artwork can be seen all over the Internet but specifically at: http://www.sitrahahra.com/. He's had hundreds of paintings, poems, and stories published both online and in print. His last exhibition was through Aesthetica Magazine and featured a projection of his digital painting 'Terminal 4' on a busy street in York, UK. This December his work will be featured at the Amsterdam Whitney Gallery in Chelsea NYC. He is also the art editor for Dozplot which can be seen at: www.dogzplot.com


Peter Schwartz's e-chapbook 'amnesia diary', published by Barnwood Press for their Great Find series, is available for your viewing pleasure at: http://web.mac.com/tomkoontz/Site_24/amnesia_diary.html. His chapbook the nowhere glow is available from Trainwreck Press.


Peter Schwartz's latest chapbook is Old Men, Girls, and Monsters. Copies are on sale at: http://achilleschapbook.blogspot.com.



(automatic radio heart)




there's nothing inside

my radio heart


a weak signal

about to turn the

station like a suicide

beneath the subways


where even dust

takes on vices

and learns the paths

of machines


learns the difference

between stars and

satellites and how

the streetlights echo


just so when the

gutters fill with heart-

ache from last night's

hangover party


whose uninvited

learned to read a few

more signals through

the half dead pulse


of the telephone

despite the static

now roaming the city

like a cloud of bees


broken from the hive

hungry even for the

bittersweet scent

of mere memory


when something

like midnight once

grabbed conscience

by the neck



and squeezed

until the automatic

blacked out leaving

just one last


lonely parking lot

of resistance.







I'm lost jigsaw

opening in a tunnel

of power


suffering placebo

by placebo

by reflex


on the fault line

of trust.




a thunderhead

blindly imitating

the sea



heavy vigils



trying to fossilize

my best.




infinite posture

forced back

into a shell


to relive

each ghost

of pathos


juggling the





a scavenger

with no name for

the wilderness


an afterlife

waiting to happen

like candles







a stepchild

watching the




over the terminus

like a finger-






knowing the

lightning never



the mantle

without a

little death


without some









we are the heroes of again

we pray like boxed angels

for an opening and then

a closing; we are not

without our rituals


we are paper men

w/ private forest fires

an aftermath of the perpetually,

essentially, bare...



we are heroes

twice with scissors

rubbed against the

flagstones of



we are

flesh to flesh; earthbound

w/ roses.





we are winter.

we are rainwater.

are we not?


we are specimens

of this momentum w/ handles

w/ amazing injuries and bad appetites

w/ candy and ashes and

potluck, too.


we are our own

burning mascots;




the human point





keep distance as a reservoir

but honor each flowering contemporary

for what it is


the residue of servitude

is the last thing

to mean what it means. 




nothing hereafter

can repaint the sky

fingertip by fingertip as a dip

inside your fatal pool of light


nothing human

can help now.




distill until it hurts

till places not places

share their despair

as scarecrows drift like astronauts

and emblems split their vows

into vestibules


for animal gifts

cannot be hunted.




toenails and haloes

the emergencies that neophytes whisper

placed sideways like fever jewels

around pillars of otherwise


(the hocus-pocus

of the fragile)






nothing human

means what it means

till now.



how to survive an execution



I’m transcendent meat

doubt sentenced to a whole

winter outside

the blockhouse


a skeleton of all the sleeping someones

I’ll never be lined up against the fence

each facing their private death squad

judgment with cigarettes

in their fingers


after a lifetime of commitment

to nothing more than style I take

on a look of concrete

as if to pave my escape

straight through the eyes

of my oppressors


who joke about my guilt

forgetting they too are apes of fate

in this perpetual fix mixing

noon with midnight until

my watch breaks

like a butterfly


my head swims

beyond the rows of trees

and stone statues

beyond this tired plaza

with its overgrown armory

of wooden benches

and slow fountains


beyond the unmentionable

and immeasurable

beyond the soldiers and pigeons

beyond government

and reason


beyond even the

child playing at the edge

of the courtyard


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