Monthly Archives: June 2012


You told me the scoop
in the side of my ass

was the mark of Jacob
wrestling with the angel.

I’m still wrestling.

Red Tail

a red tailed hawk hunts
ocean of air–feathering
oars before her kill

Raising an American City

Writhing in their pubic ferocity,
felled by the harnessed ox,
raised up in fluted bully columns,
capped with an architrave of lewd dentist’s wives,
their stout pendentive breasts saluting the day,
sloe-eyed buildings emerge from the mossy head
of the unbelieving forest.

Though brave Reed ran with the Bolshies,
bawling his warnings to the storied Ivy Ferret men,
he now lies buried in the onion-domed East.

On platforms of corrupted (yet heartfelt) constabulary (office -shells)
from awe-ful church benches
swathed in chorale garland,
groaning under organ chords of fellated splendor,
fleets of drunken sailors in pallor gay assail the Sunday socials,
mounting mayors daughters / delights while the great bell burns
and the bougainvillea bouquets
the peavey-eyed boots and
the hatchet plane faces of the tramps and loggers,
hauling their stickered catch from the unblinking river.

We annunciate the power of work!
Let us raise a new Xanadu in this valley called wilampt (spill water)
Where the Calapuya lived for 8000 years,
Gone like ghosts of the American dis-ease.

Let us stand up a world’s fair of barkentine castles and electrified gossamer.

Let us leave no leviathan black cottonwood unstumped!

Where the memaloose rest easy
and salmon big as ostriches offer their backs as a sacred bridge,
let us bring in the healing balm of enterprise!

Magdalenas of roses now enwreath the growing throng-parade of marching believers.

Holy the firm!
Breathe it in and hold fast!

A mayor’s earnest hand extends from his ribald royal coach,
his pubescent paramour subdued / sublimed,
palpitating the masses.

I turn my collar to the castigating westerly wind, step off the curb and fall into line humming,
catapulting arrogant engines of the air
to lift up the weary workers.

Exurban children unborn howl their joy,
heaping incendiary blessings / warnings on the unposed, the unknighted,
the misbegotten, the saintly poor.

Join us!
Join us in our revelry / rivening!

For an hour, I slip my bonds,
dancing with the cloistered, drunken (engorged) townsmen,
winding in a brawling second line down Broadway, zagging through town
in a starlit parade of pig-nosed fowl and feathered serpents large as whore houses,
lumbering towards the stars,
clearing / shearing the treetops,
calling out our clan names in the dun colored din,
we eventually find our deliverance
in the hardy-livered saloons
by the surly river
and the teeming head cheese marinade of butcher’s row.


peregrine falcon
circling by tower windows
Portland savannah

–Burl Whitman

A Day in June

In the half light,
the determined gate
of a seahorse.

Death in bright sequins
rides a pale horse,
hoping I’ll notice.

Rider, pass by.

–Burl Whitman


woman walking past
avoids mingling thoughts with mine
shadows on white skirt

Tea Room

crumbs on tearoom floor
the feast is spread before you
one legged sparrow