Evening Will Come: A Monthly Journal of Poetics (Trash, Issue 37, January 2014)

I Loved Earth Years Ago

“I drew a map on you so I wouldn’t get lost.”

—Doireann O’Malley

Dear Eileen, every night lately I dream about Mark, my boyfriend who renamed himself Earth back when he became an environmental and AIDS activist. I no longer call his death in Tennessee a murder I call it an execution, executed for being queer!! It happened over a dozen years ago and few believed my story and the police told our mutual friends he killed himself. An execution not fit for police investigation, just another faggot punished for breaking God’s laws in this good Christian nation. I will never apologize for my anger!! Delinquent Films is making a documentary about my new book and they questioned me about Earth. They also didn’t believe me so they interviewed the sheriff who told them Earth was a suicide. THEN they talked with the coroner and HE corroborated every detail I’ve been saying for years. Earth was hogtied, gagged, tortured, covered in gasoline and burned to death. The coroner used the word homicide and said it’s not possible this was a suicide.

I’m grateful homicide was said out loud, and that a film about my POEMS is the reason this investigation is FINALLY going to happen!! What does it take to get a faggot’s execution investigated? POEMS!! The weight of poems has arrived!! I loved him so much, my gentle, sexy man, steward of flowers and worms. I’m going to be on a panel at the Ecopoetics conference in Berkeley with some of my favorite poets. I’m creating a (Soma)tic poetry exercise where I visit the places Earth and I loved. We had a garden plot in Philadelphia, but we also planted zinnias, marijuana, cucumber, kale, cowpeas, rosemary, lemon balm and string beans along riverbanks and in overgrown, abandoned lots. The weight of poems is upon me, so I’m selling them for a little ruthless surrender. A decade is long enough to dream of revenge for a dead lover. For seven days I’ll go to our favorite places for the poems. I’ll also go on the internet to see what every ingredient I put into my body looked like when it was still growing. See fields of sesame plants while chewing their seeds, YES!!

He named himself Earth when planet extinction was clearest. He wanted to spend time in Tennessee and I warned him about country people. I was born and raised in rural Pennsylvania where everyone is proud of living in the country. I noticed at a young age that these PROUD COUNTRY people LOVE to poison, burn, shoot and decapitate the natural world. Their pride is mostly invested in SUBDUING nature, always ready to prove who’s Boss! It is difficult to tell them who they really are, like convincing my stupid father to STOP pouring ammonia and broken glass down the chipmunk holes. It is difficult to convince them of the harmless lives of tiny creatures who only need a few acorns and berries. I miss Earth. I loved him. I’m tired of being such a sad faggot but c’est la vie. His brutal execution is a mirror of every decision to pollute air, water, soil, lungs, hearts, communities of people, birds, fish, bears, stop, stop, STOP, STOP!! Are you hopeful we can stop in time? Let me write some poetry and try to calm down. Love you Eileen, and thanks for listening.

Ariana Reines showed me the
world’s first guidebook was a 12th
century pamphlet for pilgrims

 this is my refrigerator I won on

 an American game show

 once in awhile I find myself

 looking forward instead of back

 hearing all dreamers talk at

 once sends me into

 the lower organs

 I type your

 name on the computer

 delete it type it again

 different each time

 before I met you my

 favorite color was

 green light

 now I serve poetry to

 serve you

now I am famished for peace

now I watch a 90 year old movie to

witness dead people talking singing

riding horses samsara


I’ve been walking the border of sleep to find you

dreaming around the circumference of

a hole in the ground

the bravest thing sometimes is

how the morning is greeted

fight for the money or

fight for the soul the saying goes

but another goal is to

fight for neither

drip drip

drip the

soul of money

the loneliness of staying

too long in a



tension of real

things that

seem unreal

a door left

open in the

skull as

a way out as

a tyranny to

let flow through the

wires in the wall

half the mind half the

morning kept a secret from

the cooling engine of

the dream

there is no

job harder than

setting eyes in

sockets to see right

most of your friends called you a

suicide my dear man

but I know the truth in

saying I will always

love you is a

currency worth

the length

of my



How To Ruin The Child is chapter one of

my new book How To Ruin The Adult