blood/indigo sorcery/singing blues &

exaltation/without sound

painted on a page/toneless/pickled

thought/snapshot/no evolution/verbatim

tied/no room for growth/perhaps in reinterpretation/but how

its on the page/inked

like the tangled hearts


the spray can clown

tatted on a graffiti artist

ink shall not be moved

/removable only/

with abrasives/scrubbing on skin

/not penciled in/not erasable

permanently marked



/as if/




meant to last centuries

semper fidelis

liminal landmarks of shifting geography

nothing means what it meant yesterday

language melts and reassembles

in a different village

wearing a different dress

& goes to market on a different day

ink/a trick used

to tie lies together/until they weigh as much as truth


runs in water

can’t change its mind

can be reproduced without a soul

was meant to be fire works and turned into bombs

ink has  often been used as a tool by the devil



Kodak stole the souls/of Geronimo &

Sitting Bull/sat them airless/unmoving/safely

on a page/they who ran with the wind/ run no more/Nommo

is the wind’s return

how do you tie

a drum to a page

ink ain’t got no heartbeat

Nommo is the wind/

creation/destruction/life force/

crossing the continent

of the mouth/pushing past the borders of the lips/

spit is free/

liquid mercury/can be made to serve circles/or disassemble them/spit

more nimble than ink/can reinvent itself in a raised eyebrow/

sit in the shade of a tone/ can pitch tint/ offer one song/ telling many stories/

far above

empty white pages/spit don’t always dress for the occasion/arrives uninvited/

sometimes full of spirits/

is hoarse from testimony/it swears language is its own army

/has lost the land

its libraries stood on/

memorized the words/in the books to scared to write

ink never had the keys to the temple

it always told the story after

unless it was written on the

face of a virgin bride

then it might

tell dreams that signify


but you got to be sleep to dream

spit is awake

ink stole/jazz from Coltrane

stole the sound of dance/from delicate dusty dancers/no one wrote about them/

just danced they stories without remembering the calluses on their feet/ink ain’t free/it cost to color improvisation in amateur colors/ while 5 year olds massacre 100 year old music/trapped on a page/not meaning what it meant when it was writ/ink say a lot/that ain’t true/some sound fine/some sound like who they want to be when they mama looking/not the way they treated my mama/not the way they treating me/not the way they want to treat my kids/my kids kids & my kind/ they don’t write the color of that down/they keep in with the notes/thrown out like babies & bathwater/ ink been know to be scandalous/

it hunts rabbits w/a canon

best watch out for  rabbits

packing heat

armed with a quick tongue

& their own history

twisted in dna

how you burn that

if spit remembers to remember

how you shoot the nose off that

if spit see stars

you need to invent a telescope to find

what else it know

you don’t know


& maybe you can write it down

ink is good for that

but it don’t swear to tell the truth

its hard to look in the eye

& don’t always signify

what it meant

when it was writ

it don’t signify

what if ink leave you out/do you still

exist/??/what if ink say you

what you ain’t/is you/??/if ink fill the whole page/leaving you only the margin/do you have room to write/??/if they left parts of you floating in the ocean/discarded out of survival’s necessity/do you write the tale/??/

if you ain’t got a language anymore/how you write/??/if they take your words soon as you say them/??/do you have time to write/??/

maybe you invent new words

spit in freed styles

wind conjures

never inked

too bold

razor words

meaning changing

before they can write it down

how you like me now

you think you

in the conversation

you think/?/

. it don’t signify

like blue black wrinkled old men

in stingy brims

teeth clenching 5 dollar cigars

breath smelling of gin and knowing

from a distance

whose eyes grin

as they eloquently explode

 divine curses

like corks from aged wine

you gotta shake ya head

so it don’t hit ya

as it moves through the room

strutting like a big butt woman

everybody looking

how you write that down?

when spirit rise

round midnight

& can only be appeased

by breath breaking past cracked lips

like wind over sharp mountains

ink can’t signify

only chase the wind

Nommo is the wind

catching the hems

of old ladies on

sunday mornings

how you write that down?

how you write

crossing a desert called an ocean

cosmically homeless

transatlantic transgression

pressed like powder


purple super beings

the product of projects

overflowing with product

everybody swinging

nobody got time to duck

but we still here

how you write it

what ink know bout real life

without commercials

how you write it