addiction Americana analysis art astronomy education epidemeology horror Uncategorized womens studies

such promise

it was a hot wednesday afternoon
i saw her downtown
this old high school classmate of mine
valedictorian of her class
hanging like a drying dish rag
on the pock-covered arm
of her fourth divorce

they looked like they had just driven in
from a northern shithole township
to taste
of the urban opioid market


merri smyth
merri smyth

full of

tell me this

how is it
you are not
an astrophysicist


mother of seven

living and dying
on public assistance

Jazz Music poetry Short Stories Uncategorized Urban Legends writing

a case of the cain’t hep itz

down where i’m from
once you cross the line
from fayette into jessamine county
the condition ceases to be psychotic compulsion
and becomes known as
a bona fide case
of the can’t help its

and that’s what we have here folks
a cliff wandering fool
drinking pabst
wearing the statue of liberty’s crown
deep crimson nail polish and matching pumps
torch in hand
cock knockin’ around in a pair
of walgreens panty hose
blaming his mother for acid rain
and the red sox game

if that ain’t a case of the “cain’t hep itz”
i don’t know what is

Jazz Music poetry Short Stories Uncategorized Urban Legends writing

i hated myself at the time

you must know
i was only capable of loving you
because i hated myself at the time

who in their right would choose a yolk
of unjustified mistrust
and mutilation

i threw everything you ever gave me
off the terwelleger bridge
into the little miami river
drunk and laughing
at 3 o’clock in the morning

a fetid dump wasn’t good enough
that shit needed to see the ocean again

but i kept two things

a photo album you gave me
all pictures of you
kissing pictures of me

to remind myself that i did matter
i did have worth and always will

the face of evil must be remembered
to better warn the other villagers

and a copy of the only honest poem you ever wrote

three days after bloody sheets and hands
as two rivers converged in pittsburgh

“lift your cup to this immortal passing
this child of ours who will not every cry
then no tear is shed without love lasting”

that’s the only thing you ever did
that i don’t hate you for

Jazz Music poetry Short Stories Uncategorized Urban Legends writing

you can make a daisy

You, insidious creature,
tell me how the fuck is it
you can make a daisy

Jazz Music poetry Short Stories Uncategorized Urban Legends

eat the sober

trust fund baby with a living room outreach
a crashed sports car
and an optional adjunct teaching job

your shit just piled up high enough
to choke the heavens

alcoholics anonymous is a cult
you’re all addicts indeed
itching for a meeting
instead of mad dog

any corner any hour
you may shove that 12 step bible
where the sun don’t shine

i’m sorry i’m from kentucky

i have a t-shirt which reads

eat the sober

no i have no room in my life

to house a mental ward on my couch

oh god you hippy dippy types
dead heads will believe anything

“They are not schizophrenics, they’re people living with schizophrenia…”

i’ll remember that when i wax unromantic
about you in the future

“He wasn’t an asshole, he was a man living with an asshole’s thoughts…”

Jazz Music poetry Short Stories Uncategorized Urban Legends

over the cosmetics counter at macy’s

i remember sitting
in your provisionally furnished
unliving room
piled high with alphabetized stacks
of your personal and professional failures
balanced atop a neurotic collection
of pizza boxes
and coffee cans welded
into homemade torture devices

watching you waller bare assed
on your unfortunate chair
sipping coffee smoking pot
planning on bourbon
complaining no one takes your abuse
in a manner that suits your liking

i found myself wishing to be in a place
with anyone but you
to be anywhere but there
shaking out a rug
airing a mattress
applying pine sol to the length of route 80

to cleanse the earth
of your doomsday pestilence

knowing myself to be a fool
for buying into your bottom shelf poems
and cock strong swagger
my feet swiftly found an escape tunnel

but i kept a picture of you
in your dirtiest jeans
exposing your minimalist views
on having teeth
then drove into the city

had it blown up parade balloon size
and hung it up like scarecrow
a warning to all women
over the cosmetics counter at macy’s

Jazz Music poetry Short Stories Uncategorized Urban Legends

ask your doctor if this poem is right for you

to hell with sympathy
with a marked lack of empathy
just take on more pill


pre menstrual kill your family disorder

postpartum confessions

i can spell aixelsyd backwards

bi polar polar bears
savants and social outcasts

this episode of your mother
is being brought to you
by acme pharmaceuticals

look to the water source or better still
the drugs we’ve pissed into it

because the whole damned world

has developed a twitch

pretend to be asleep

i hear the nurse coming

poetry Short Stories Uncategorized Urban Legends


your heart
is made
from the shoe leather
of your drunken mother

your soul
is the ash tray
in which your father
crushed cigarettes to their death

your face is blackness
void of human characteristic

your words sharpened blades
hurled at the apple
placed perpetually
upon the heads of those
who must endure you

time and sunlight
will cure the earth
of your plague

all without the help
of a god in heaven