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I Am a Fact Not a Fiction
Selected Poetry by Edward Mycue

Life / Time / Memory

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Cell Damage

Fury injustice abyss ashes
All the animals
Innocent beasts
Wild horses wild water
Splash flesh tackle
I drag land
Fierce horses

Terrible beings from below
Get rid of the bones
Snapping sounds
Dry cinders
Pests is what our worth is
Weight and curses
Scurrying rats
Broken back

Such are the birth tales

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as we rose, we changed — birthslug, toddler,

kiddo, preteen brainiac out through serious
awkwardness, bootielateral-liciously present

into some normatively developed willfullness
termed “transom,” “conduit” — symbols for such

flowering forms transversing to any seedy end.

the who we were and are will swell, seek, range,
swim within the scale our mature notions permit

wading through them conducting translucent lives.

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Slap My Eyes

i know you are supposed to say you thought it would be easier than this (given all strived and labored for), and where is the sweet leisured payoff. (it is still “in the mail” and “the sun will come out tomorrow/ tomorrow/bet your bottom dollar...come what may”).

that's life: when you come up for air you find you are underwater.
there's no retreating back up the birth canal.
amid all the plod ’n grovel there has to be a secret santa.

well enough soon enough then enough. enough?
the where’s and the when’s keep turning.
we are like that teenager in the gulf of aden clinging to the airbuss wreckage.

hang in there,
help is on the way.
or maybe sometimes help is in the way.

keep the hope light on.

love is what the clouds send your way

living today yesterday.

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Valleys of Departure

As in November when we plant
tulip, hyacinth and daffodil
as old bonds grown dull
among mutable
imaginary satisfactions,
like those meiotic moments
in dreamed carts of hay)
those things remembered
trail, reflect
The torpor brought
from the soft thocking
has gone and left us only us.
It is time and nothing waits.
It is soon and nothing waits.
It is late and nothing waits.

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The Great Wave

This is bitter
Life is brief
Friendships passing
Time’s the thief

Life is bitter
This is brief
Passing friendships
Surpassed by grief

Time is liquid
Each sun sets
Sunset renews
Our floating leaf

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mood is

a mind-map as if the mind covered
the whole body and its feeling and emotions.

the state of the world
and our u.s.a. contribution
of messing it up has me brooding.

those wasp galls sometimes
ping pong ball size
(and sometimes more tiny than a pea)
on numerous kinds of oak trees
mirror me to myself the way that
“power of ten” idea of out-of-the-body
visualizations re-imagines me to me.
zooming in/out from insignificance
and responsibility to not even
the painted face of a clown.

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Knowledge of a Single Rose

The five-petaled regular corolla rose
has sorghum fingers that play with your nose
from the inner envelope. This is not
the Rose of Sharon: that spindling hollyhock
is as near to a rose as a hemlock.

The rosary is a Roman Catholic devotion
that has five sacred “mysteries” and five
sets of ten “decades” of Ave Maria prayers
and each begins with an Our Father prayer,
and each decade ends with the Glory Be one.

It’s all repeated like the rose, like some
magical-mystical charm or enchantment “OM.”
It’s meant as more a path than a pastime:
each rose a single step pilgrimage, window,
colored hope, and compass pleasingly rote.

I know you now, rose; I know you not, rose.

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We Remember Magnolia

Trip down memory lane.
In deed. Last year’s magnolia.
Time machines march on.
View the past. Only.
Scanning for answers.
For suggestions.
If any are disclosed or uncovered.
The machine never talks “future.”
Only scans backward.
Without any updates.
And the time machine memory
only blurs the velvet picture
in any future re-scan backward
because the most recent past
is the foggiest of what was
(having no historical certainty
validated by memory because
those mists seem more real
than today’s blindered confusions
we stumble in right now).
Magnolia once white darkens.
But we remember how it was.

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Yesterdreams—Star Light

for Chandan Bono

— bronzed pair of booties holding down a sagging telephone line,
— picture from a gone time but one that is still just out my window
here on fulton and octavia streets next to olive trees with plastic bags caught in them
— “witches cowls” — filled with passing breezes

amid caws of crows & occasions when sea birds escape east from ocean storms & west
to California from the Sierras when calmer,

settling in our parking lots deciding maybe east or west again, birds moving, passing,
pausing; only flitting hummingbirds silent so far

— & my mind’s bronzed booties imaged there from pairs of tennis shoes often caught on
lines where drug runners marked territories;

my San Francisco mind marked with long densely-textured decades written, cared-for, polished, discarded, & somehow are written again

because the mind wasn't finished with them & i was unable to find a step-down program
to get free from voices, visions. where when i’m

dead will those booties go? will there be telephone lines & poles?
will it all sink as sediment under risen shores scraped, lathered by

empowered tides with only birds on their ways in their days that alone continue while
below fish swim above our yesterday silt

in fogs, rain, wind & sun without anyone until “time” arrives as
earth itself fractures into “space” that collides beyond my deeming.

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Everything Is Bending

Paths lead up, down. Day’s not east. All’s traffic.
In these necessary hours, a man lifts his arms,
stretching a ready, signaling crimson. A long

shadow adds you. The you adds with. And all
night, love. Bending everything. So, if numbers
inquire, tell them we are the ones, they are ones,

I am one: awe-filled not a turned-brain knob.
If the numbers inquire, tell me you are a one, I
am your one, we truckle, burnished, roan now, in
submarine confusion, swollen, last guest, happy
proclaiming life is the insult. Even when it’s not.
If the numbers inquire, you can say how differing

drummers relive, repeat lessons of pilgrimage,
malaise, the hungering decline of allegiances,
how to fill a numb center, to reshape the line.

Night is a dream and I am dreamt by trees. Trees
are like words. Words are veils. In the forests,
the stones are moss-covered. The trees sign to the stones.

Between two there are lichens. Between things, words.
Words are the things. But we don’t grow wise. Last
night, trees dreampt me, you took me into your arms.

The chill on the night is a path. We don’t grow wise.
Hold me. Night is a dream. Permission varies, a person
changes, no fiction’s real. The lovers, joined, were

separable. Indistinguishable. Not to themselves: so
neither could extirpate the memory? How could they
be true to their natures? It made them like numbers.

In the jail of San Francisco a gardener’s more beautiful
than his roses. That odor of decay in tender flesh.
In the Johnny Neptune Bar where the Sunset guys shout
“lemme have a Bud, I need a bud” a man is fucked.
“Queer” is a family where since they spoke the same
language all the people understood each other as they

wandered looking for a land to like. When they found
it, they began to change it into a great decorated city.
With decorated walls, courtyards and a tower to make

them famous as Babel because that beckons a proud
people who although overweened and confounded with
a curse of voices were one family of bending numbers.

Here cross-dressing is transpersonal. The drag’s hero.
Here the mix and match malebox is full. Check it out
You can’t order tools for living. Cross-dressing for

counterfeiters, ersatz, fake, actors, novices, postulants.
Pass. Received, recommended. Each an encore. Awe-
some is not the word. Try another body, try clone, truly

yours, try genetic position, try engineering (impotent
mission) try to change anything. Change your whistle!
Divent, divest, invent, invest, enter the second journey

moving through to dis-embody, trans-body, cross over.
Try to change your lord: memory. Go to another planet.
Drag-queen’s hero, transpersonal. Check it out. Try.

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We Leave Nothing Behind

What we experience we are
Much passes through us
But we leave nothing behind

What we are we are
What we have been is us
What is left is nothing

We leave nothing behind
An earthworm caught in time
Much passes through us

What we have been we were
What is left is nothing
We leave nothing behind

  © Edward Mycue 2009

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