Writer of the Week: Brice Maiurro

Brice Maiurro (Photo credit: Jason Greashaber)

Note: You can watch and listen to Brice reading this poem, here.

Love Poem for Everything

By Brice Maiurro

When I can’t stay inside my own head
let alone this half-haunted apartment.

When I bust down the door into space.

When I lie in the middle of the busy road.

When I turn my head up to the night sky
and I let it consume me.

Car honks.
The distant hum of punk rock
diving out of bars.
The sound of stale beer
on the floor
warped wood panels
some guy trash-talking
football punchy soapbox manifestos
floating down streams of consciousness.

Fingers snapping like they’re trying to start a fire
the only thing getting laid is bricks.

Underground and in the bookstores
dreaming of 90s children’s television shows
dreaming of 60s communism parties
and why shouldn’t they?

The flag is torn in decades it’s only pieced back together in time.

Jills in jackboots
souls in shoes
transient life in constant hearts
sheep in wolves clothing
Hawaiian shirts at funerals
crowded buses on their 36 hustle
taking the elitist drunks to The People’s Republic of Boulder
taking trustafarians to Denver, Queen City of the Cranes*
the dying hunt for empanadas for streetlights
dripping with light
closing their eyes at 2 am
but not tired.

For the devil’s curly hair! Patrolling Cap Hill at 3 am for a pulse
singing improv ethereal gutter moon chainsaw garage dumpster surf punk to the dead trees
we made this whole thing up!

For the queen bitches on Mars
revealing armor in striptease, in unwavering loud truth
vulvas slapped like stickers on masculine walls
calling not for destruction
but reminding the Bukowskis it’s getting dark outside
you’d better let your bluebird free.

For eyes in round glasses
sporadic jolts of childhood boom snap clap nursery rhymes
driving cow towns over moons and potato anthems stories
reminders that this here is what we have
and what we have is the space to be, still
that there is value in alleys that live between banks and bars

like breaths in Gibson.

Guitars still being played
marches, rallies, protests, strikes, riots
all still being played
Dylan still being played
paint slapped on shirts on sweaters
and when they ask “what does it mean?” we’ll say
good question.

and when they ask “what does it mean?” we’ll say
be patient, they’ll figure it out someday.

Outside the window
there are metric tons of humanity
crashing against each other
like two oceans thrown together
swallowing entire continents.

Our children will eat our mistakes
like Breakfast of Champions
their poetry will be lethal to hate.

as we begin to shrink back into the Earth
we will know to look up to them.

Our children will never trip on a phone cord.

They will grow flowers in the plots of our graves.

They will sing in octaves that we’ve never heard.

They won’t know industry
or need
they won’t need to

my hope is
they will bloom organic
in houses made of opened blood cells.

Our children will shine
and cheers with love potions.
They will see through owl’s eyes.
They will make each other’s beds.

Our children will eat at one long table;
the longest wickedest table we’ve ever seen.

Our children will bear witness to our history.

Our children will correct our story.

They will put us in their paintings
and display our failures in public hangings.

Our children will reclaim the daytime for the sun.

Our children will shatter glass ceilings with fists made of flowers.

They will stare each other in the eyes when they communicate.

They won’t open their mouths.

When we die, our children will live
and it will be so damn hard on them
that someday they too will die.

Hear me now:
uncork your neck and pour out your spirit
my friends, my sisters, my brothers
I say this to you urgently
as a tragic skeleton wrapped in painful comedy.

if it is a sign you are looking for, make your home on highways.

I say this to you my friends, my sisters, my brothers
my sons and daughters.

I do not sleep much these days,

but when I do I dream of you
and of you and of you

and I wake up so confused
because if it wasn’t for the Heaven I huddle around me
I worry I’d find myself living in Hell

so thank you to the Heavens for existing right now
thank you, Earth, for gravity
thank you, Wind, for levity
thank you, Water, for movement
and thank you, Fire
for giving us something to circle around.

I say this to you, my friends, my sisters, my brothers

I love you.

I love your death and I love your rebirth.

I love your broken womb, your unwatched fire
your five-course meal of disaster
that you offer me on a dirty platter

and I love you not in the next moment but in this one.

I love your wealth and your company and your energy
for I will die poor and tired and alone.

Every single one of us will die poor and tired and alone.

Thank you to the warm hand that carries my dead skull home, into this half-haunted apartment
where I close my door and rest

dreaming of everything.

Brice Maiurro is a poet and storyteller living in Denver, Colorado. He is the Poetry Editor for Suspect Press and the Editor-In-Chief of South Broadway Ghost Society. He is the author of two collections of poetry, Hero Victim Villain and Stupid Flowers. You can find him at www.maiurro.co.

Tilt West is a nonprofit org based in Denver. Our mission is to promote critical discourse focused on arts and culture for our region and beyond.