Inspired by Ohio’s Stay At Home Order

1. Citizens of Jubalaw

By Order of the Good King Splat,
the following activities are banned.

Picking your nose, dancing too close,
hula-hooping and hunting for ghosts,

pretending it’s shark week when it’s not,
playing with your brand new pet Ocelot,

lazily pacing while dressed like a clown,
also making fun of King Splat’s crown,

and jumping in place with mayonnaise
in your right pocket on Thursdays.

2. Stay at Home Jubalaw!

The Jubalaw information bureau, would like to remind all citizens
that Public gatherings of more than 1.3 persons, are prohibited until

further notice. If a citizen is found to engage in Clubs, clusters, bunches
clumps they will be subject to the penalties outlined below.

  1. Tickling with albino goose feathers for the first infraction
  2. Upon the second infraction the penalty will be social distance shaming via Facebook Live where the accused is made to eat a lemon while standing on one foot while playing air guitar
  3. Upon the third infraction the penalty will be death-just kidding! It will only be a fine which is fine.
  4. These fine fines will go to build a shrine to Emperor Splat, our good king here in Jubalaw.
  5. He needs all of the fine fines for a shiny suit that is great and grand and wonderful and stupendous and the best that anyone has ever seen…
  6. (if you take Emperor Splat’s word for it)



         Image by ladyeleanor from Pixabay 
contemplate origins like wading 
where it's dark but not completely silent

what does it sound like is it the hum
of a grassy field of crickets in unison

when you close your eyes do you see the key
when it turns do you let it happen or do you

shut out the memories deciding that you are not
a repository and that memory should be finite

you might say to yourself I'll come back
to this place when I'm ready but you know

you might never be ready only the strong can slipstream
darting through past lives crashing like a wave

besides other mental structures are fortified daily
bricks taken out all painted a horrifying shade of beige

so you run in circles to forget and become numb
to the eyes to the reigning unconscious become

as one without thought or rage or ambition become
mollified let the illusion mimic those first sounds

rabbit eared dominant frequency like a space opera
warm in the loving embrace of our bug god overlords

bending time

crisp air stings my lungs and I know

its fall again in Ohio stubborn leaves cling to


ground the green washed away replaced

by brown and gold brittle memories snow


in the forecast for Halloween another

year another decade and I’m stuck like


I was at the turn of the last decade I thought

time changed iron bars to silk strings like


motion reflected in pools of water collecting

in a rain storm wind blowing changing


leaves green topcoat with red vestments like

the universal soul marching into a new sun

building eco-systems of the future, today!

cities of tomorrow where it’s your own little commune a simulation of a small town

feel because it’s been built that way to have restaurants  micro-breweries  dog parks

human parks  movie theaters  barbershops and salons  comedy clubs


(but remember this

multi-national corporations laid stakes into public land

to expand stock prices of multi-national corporations (the shareholders included)


to employ workers for a pittance,

to clean the shiny new bank-financed surfaces

that somehow the tax payer is probably fitting the bill for


workers who will happily drive

throughout greater metropolitan areas

for a job with shitty hours and few benefits


Leaving Kent Ohio Summer skunk blue sky divides asphalt

No evidence of existence of decay blottted out billboards rust

Asking me to come to Jesus


When sanitized stink is the order of the day razed and relocated

Cratered highway reminds me of home Ohio having the problems


Of post-industrial places


waning and waxing loyalties to humanity

I wonder if that is the point—get used to a lack of privacy get used to living in public

get used to living on a razor’s edge get used to extra shades of paranoia get used


bruised buried skeletons demand warm sunlight—stage to dance on audience to yawn

through their tears


blind demand sight two working eyes not content with sleight of hand tricks

been through this before—seen how the magicians unmasked visage rises in


pitch timbre quavering shake off

the fever get used to mantra—out of sight

of mind silent spring with no birdsong privilege takes center stage as fever rages


subsides as morning peeks through the shade and I roll over on my side with dollar signs

that wear my eyes

Hating the Reader Less

I want my poetry in a white hot room

singing myself, although

when the lights are turned off no self exists.

Capturing a fleeting moment,

praising space in between spaces,

feeding on the breath, turning invisible

as hulking ships caught between time.

We are shadow raising shadow,

on the chord of life that we

see when we leave our bodies,

up or down the stairs

what is unlocked

is eternal