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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in L. Bangs' LiveJournal:

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Tuesday, April 25th, 2017
11:27 am
You Don't Know How Precious You Are / I Am the One Who Lives




Underwater

When we cut the final thread at last for good,
I let myself go below.

I don't know how
You smelled of purple powder.

I allowed myself to sink,
As children limp their legs and hold their breath
Till bubbles rise
And wonder if really they'll stay on the bottom of the pool
Forever.
I believe the salamander understands.

I showed you once how to throw your left.
You nearly knocked me out.

I'll never go below again.
I rose and started homeward
Over fresh and fragrant fields
Rioting violet and green.


- 4/25/17
Monday, April 24th, 2017
11:14 am
If We Are / We're Taking This a Little Too Far




Orchardland

Hungry orchard,
Hungry orchard
Under the snowfall,
Under the fog.

I know a woman
And I know her daughter.
She digs up the tree stumps
She draws her own water.

Wrapping apples in pantyhose.
The cherries need a net.
Keeping frost from off the mangos.
Sleep, the plums ferment.

She is lovely
And chants like a muse.
But stay your way, son.
She'll make a mash of you.

Haunted orchard
Haunted orchard,
Lost within the moonlit night.
Stay away from silver snowfall
Far from the frost and fog.


- 4/24/17
Friday, April 21st, 2017
11:32 am
I Slept It Away / I Sexed It Away / I Read It Away / Away / Away




Unanswering

You shouldn't be reading this.
I died beneath her weight
And I arose the god of death.
I left no trace upon her lips.
Will I remain within you?

Run it through my wrist
And see if I still bleed.
She swore to us
You're only who you are when you are naked,
And I believed
Her holy words,
Her deity.

Quiet confessions
Kept like threats and undeveloped photographs.
I shove my head above the oil and still cannot breathe.
Please lean me
Over.
Run it through my fragile wrist
And push your teeth into my tender side.
I bleed.
I believe.
Feed.

Her burning spirit in my ear.
"You only get a blinded shot
And you only get it once.
Now feel it leave."
It runs in rivers
Through my knotted wrist,
A brackish water from desert stone.

She never mentioned absolution
Or the citrus tang of purity.
She only spoke of hunger,
The holiness of broken meat
Eaten without remembrance.


- 4/21/17
11:30 am
Why Am I Soft in the Middle / The Rest of My Life Is So Hard




X

You left the candy on my desk
And thought I would not eat it all.
You are so sweet.


- 4/20/17
Thursday, April 20th, 2017
12:40 pm
Brush Your Hair / Fix Your Teeth / What You Wear Is All That Matters




The Director Arrives

Under cover of moaning night,
He demands a double
And lights another,
Reflecting on the smoky prints he shed.
He swapped a native bills for acres,
Fools confusing symbols for bullets,
Bled for tourists and pulpits.
Both his women wait
For him to finish his dictation,
Letters to his wife,
A slightly more complicated nest
Of trading and looting.

Blurry years,
Him holding hands and circles,
Singing the song that never ends

This is life peeled bare of lies and niceties,
A brutal bundle of impulses,
An ugly rubbing of the itching
Leaving joy and pain behind for the mellow naked now,
Floating pleased and shooting every mirror.

On and on, my friends departed.


- 4/20/17
Wednesday, April 19th, 2017
12:15 pm
I Lost My Way / I Made My Mess / I'd Clean It for You / If You Want Me To




Drains

Spring drains to mud pools.
The falling peace leaves a mess in its wake.
Earth's open arms are never pretty long.
Grace can be an ugly business.

The sky gives
What the dust no longer
Wants to take.

Between my feet within the field,
A slender weed is thrashing,
Bent and boxed by April winds.
The shorter grass all around is waving gently,
Almost soothing,
While my broken friend is crooked, battered,
And bouncing.


- 4/19/17
Tuesday, April 18th, 2017
11:33 am
The Cigarettes You Light / One After Another / Won't Help You Forget Her




Cloud Spying

There are skies I do not know
Although I've studied the clouds for years,
The confidence of heft and fluffiness,
The common ivory clutter,
And the bereft unfurling of the thinly pulled few
Trailing off fine and leaving themselves
In strands across the lonely states.

Your colored vibrant shape is new,
Capturing ruby light
In touch-and-go oranges
And wounded wines of danger.
I see you glide
Ever changing,

And the winds enter my ears
As I fall with the sudden snow.


- 4/18/17
Friday, April 14th, 2017
12:10 pm
You Gotta Pay Your Dues / Before You Pay Your Rent




Early Frost

The darkness punctured by the needle chill
A quickening transformation,

Frosted car windshields
The unexpected cold that brings the bud to bloom
And draws a crystal beard from the faucet,

And then the lighter grey,
The blurry forms and muted colors smeared,
The sudden sun.

Some retreat into the mud
Or snap and wilt below it,
Melt and lose themselves beneath.
Some glow.


- 4/14/17
Wednesday, April 12th, 2017
9:47 am
So Tie Your Shoelaces to My Shoelaces / I'll Tie a Rope to a Tree




How Many Ways

This is not a letter from a distant star
Already dead some time ago.

The wooden beam I'm standing on
Could snap and send me twenty levels under.
A laser beam from outer space
Could slam and zap my heavy pretty head.

We steer our ships as well
As flies control the currents of the skies.
It’s funny, isn't it, how many ways I could die today?
I believe that we should weave them all to rhyme
And gallivant tonight.
The moon is lovely shrinking from its fullness,
Regardless how it looks tomorrow.


- 4/12/17
Tuesday, April 11th, 2017
11:48 am
You're Hooked / You're Cooked / You're Caught




Every Time

She is smiling
Enough to crack the glass
Of iced red wine
On the bar beside her elbows.

You hear the stories,
Some friend, the burnt-out cigarette
In water beside the curb,

But that is them
Every time.

Somehow
This air conditioning
Always kicks in,
But never shuts off,
Heavy musty respiration
That faintly blows away
And doesn't take a breath,
A snake-enchanting flute of muted roar eternal.

The truth,
The chalky heart of a salty nut
You chip and peel apart.

You didn't notice her stand up,
Her space now filled
By curls of sandy black
And rocky eyes examining the bottles,
Never taking note of you,
The one who knows,

Her only friend in the world.


- 4/11/17
Monday, April 10th, 2017
12:25 pm
This Is the Sound / Of Your Rooftop Coming Down




Book of Common Prayer

Please
Be careful reading this,
I beg you.
This
Like the scripture around a faith
Contains my days complete.

Creation's never simple,
History is never fair,
And every love I've dared to make
At last was tragic.
I've mourned abuse in psalms
That lifted heavy questions
To empty skies I only pray could hear.
My words of wisdom
Fill a quarter page at best,
And all my testaments are old
Beyond belief.

These marks that conjure sounds
That witness me
Are not a magic.
Make no graven image.
I am not a bush aflame
And unconsumed.
I am a broken walk,
A broken man who clung to God
And found no blessing,
Viewed no vision of descendants
Spread and lit like stars.
I will die alone,
Spent a verse or two
Before salvation,

But as we wrestled,
I was told his name,
Where Jacob heard not.

Is it better to know?

Should I confess to you right here
The very name of God,

Or would you rather be blessed?

Be careful reading this.


- 4/10/17
Friday, April 7th, 2017
12:12 pm
She Said, "Come Over, Come Over" / She Smiled at You / Boy




The Handkerchief in Front

My destiny was never doubted.
I sneeze when I stare into the sun.
Her hair was red, a mess so icy,
A freeze I could feel inside my chest.

She never landed.
She’d only rest.
She knew my flight was mere pretending,
Stomping heavily on prairies
While flapping my flabby arms.

Somewhere she floats
On cigarettes clouds or smoke above a winter stream.
She is still a Massachusetts mystery,
A blessed chill along the road to Pretoria.


- 4/7/17
Thursday, April 6th, 2017
12:16 pm
Like a Monkey with a Miniature Cymbal / The Joy of Repetition Really Is in You




The Structure

For once,
She hollows well her voice
And sets it gliding over the surface of the tiles.
Her debut performance
Thins your blood,
The telling smoke.

The past parades
You hear several streets away,
But her awkward advances,
The awareness of anomoly,
Incites a revolution.
That refuses retreat.

The paradigm of romance
Is cracking its back.
You might resist
And fight and twist and break,

And you might miss the world brought up from water,
Cracking the shell of the creek,
Awake and new.


- 4/6/17
Wednesday, April 5th, 2017
12:22 pm
I Remember How the Darkness Doubled / I Recall Lightning Struck Itself




Cig Run

Searching all the night,
The draining evening strung from shoulder blades,
We saw the light at last
And ran it.
The streets have not been fed
For months.
I'm hacking between the drags.

The Father and the Son
Ride shotgun next car over,
Revving at every stop sign
Praying for Pottstown.

I'm coughing
Raspberry yellow hands.

She fans her fingers in the rain
And sighs, "I thought you died."
Hey, love, don't rush me much.
I'm on my way
I swear.

She rolls the window up
And sinks into her quilted vest,
Aware the queen
Survives each match that's played
Always to stand alone.


- 4/5/17
Tuesday, April 4th, 2017
12:00 pm
Stop Worrying If Your Vision Is New / Let Others Make That Decision / They Usually Do




Water Run

Eyes beside her on the splintered park bench,
Snakes in hand,
She's reading the report.
I grub no words
And sit examining the cracks
In the blacktop basketball court.

The world is ending.
Rain is falling
On our aged neglected masterpiece.
The colors won't survive this time.
The spots will only grow.

I stare and hold the sides of the wooden bench
So I will stay on the earth
A little longer.


- 4/4/17
Monday, April 3rd, 2017
12:06 pm
The Water was Freezing / She Spent a Month Sneezing / But Said She Would Do It Again




The Moment

You exit
The living room,
The tiny small apartment,
Soaking light
From the unsteady stars
That might already
Be nothing.

Alone
The moment you realize
You're no longer living
Or dying
Only.

Solitary,
All your love
Now stretched too thin
Across a monumental country,
Your very life
Too far away to touch.

No whimper,
No bang,
Not yet,
Just sadly longing
On your own
Below the empty sparkle of the dawning evening.


- 4/3/17
Thursday, March 30th, 2017
11:54 am
And as Things Fell Apart / Nobody Paid Much Attention




Tangerine

Wordless
Nodding

I'm inches tall.
I've strayed from humble fields of grain
To heights forbidden,
Not a silver sound
Evading her cushioned lips
So comfortable among the cocaine clouds.

Her former current lover hovers
By the tacky bowl of butter balls
Beside the bar,
A vodka tonic and lime within his meaty hand,
His back positioned there in space and time with purpose,
Stowed strategically so near the distant door,
The shoulderless tops,
And purses impossibly minuscule.
I have her eye,
But not her tongue,
Her thick potential tongue,
Her charmed elusive tricky tongue.

Despite the smoke infused throughout the cool,
I smell the sun now baking wax.
I've grown so small
So high.


- 3/30/17
Wednesday, March 29th, 2017
12:50 pm
Your Daddy's Rich / And Your Mama Is Good Looking




Weightless

My joy,
The empty streets,
Forgotten cities,
Dried and mummified beneath the desert.

In the end,
I thought you would discover.
I hoped with all I am.

You stand on top the scattered sands,
Unweighted,
Scanning the hazy horizon.


- 3/29/17
Tuesday, March 28th, 2017
12:24 pm
Just Don't You Feel Too Bad / When You Get Fooled by Smiling Faces




All Things Have Rest and Ripen

I carry her daily tears
Inside my hollowed hands.
She brings me buttered rum
When storms and midnight come.

We know this isn't right.
The day lends courage ending it all.
The evening makes us lonely cowards,
Joining at the starving sunset,
Crawling toward the territory of the Gindanes


- 3/28/17
Monday, March 27th, 2017
11:23 am
And If You Could Go / You Would, I Know / And If I Could Stay




Chilly Morning Grey

The clouds cannot commit,
The drizzle shy and tentative,
Almost a fog that soaks the chilly morning grey.
Against your will,
Again you're practicing
The painful art
Of unfolding your fingers.

There's a passing flood of delight in vengeance,
Like the flush of sex,
And yet no balm in bitterness.
You balance on a borrowed hair
And never land a blow
Before it breaks.

And so it always goes,
The final fleeting hands and words
Through rolled-down windows,
Fading fenders,
Taillights in rain.

Unfold your fingers.
Bless the skies for understanding.
You cast about your aching arms
And never land a blow.


- 3/27/17
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