Angels Jabbing Metal Fishing Hooks into Human Lips

“I got bit in the face by a saint Bernard at age 2, it’s my first memory;”

paralyzed to plaster and porcelain,
making a mouth with your feet,
the shower has been on for
an hour now and you’ve just been
staring at the veins in your arms;
those scarred remnants of
wrist tally marks and
sexually transmitted
Molluscum contagiosum lesions
(burned off by liquid nitrogen)
are never going away;

“back home in Franklin, Pennsylvania, my friends used to shove stuff up their friend’s urethra for fun; it was like that Hasbro game Operation, except we weren’t removing bones or small organs, instead we were carefully feeding wooden toothpicks and paperclips into each other’s pee holes before inevitably stabbing into a person’s inner penis meat, just replace the sharp buzzer sound with a high-pitched scream; there was absolutely no guarantee that the unlicensed child-doctor holding the Q-tip or thumbtack had any good aim or hand-eye coordination being in another man’s meatus, but the anxiety and anticipation were both part of the fun; i mean, the way I rationalize it, ya know, gladiator games repurposed men to fight for bloodsport, to participate in a grandiose ritual of life-or-death competition; the paranoia of early American-life was exercised through irrational burnings and reconstructive lynchings, pure white-flight night light scare tactics; and let’s not forget the antics of military unit 731 of the Japanese Imperial Army, whose soldiers performed human experiments with a hidden effervescence, a child-like curiosity lifting up the red curtain, like pulling up fingernails to look into the human soul, so to speak; what I’m trying to say is, we knew what we were doing wasn’t something necessary, we were just do-nothing rural kids stickin’ stuff in our friends wieners because we had nowhere to go and nothing much to do, it was simple exploration, ya know, aint nothing to it, aint nothing wrong with it, and compared to the shit people used to do for mental, scientific, political, and spiritual satisfaction, our activity was peaches and fuckin’ cream; i do believe, though, that sounding is an exercise in trust, penile-drilling exercises made ordinary life seem more volatile, more determined; other than the memories of weird penis games and intimate boredom, I don’t really think about home that much, I think it’s because so many of my friends were getting cancer when they were young, and seeing my friends die made me want to leave and experience life, ya know, I got scared; you’re gunna think I’m weird but I believe my friends got sick because of the oil drilling history in my town, because, and hear me out, the city of Franklin is part of the greater Oil Region, which includes Oil City (Quaker State, Pennzoil) and Titusville (T-Vegas, Titties-ville, otherwise known as the location where Col. Edwin Drake first spurted rock oil in 1859); you remember the guy who shot Lincoln in the head? Yeah, John and his theatre-money founded Dramatic Oil Company and drilled for oil in Pennsylvania in 1864 during the tail end of the Civil War, specifically in Franklin –– John the dynamite-blaster and Edwin the driller-killer fucked up and sucked up the lifeblood of Pennsylvania to find fuel for a nation killing itself, and now, the kids in my town are gunna die of cancer before they can be stupid teenagers sticking stuff up their friends’ dick holes;”

(edit: newly formed red rivers flow through Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; the world sifts through grit to find whiskey, women, and black gold)

lying on a fold-out leather couch with sunbeams pounding against the living room television, middle-eastern tank magazines litter the coffee table, the static vanishes in the wooden box when the power button is pushed, the air is sucked into the screen; 2000s toonami schedule, yu yu hakusho demon world tournament, 2010s toro y moi chillwave feeling it all around wes anderson moonrise kingdom, neon indian, pyramid cigarettes, arcade fire; eating fruit from a Ziploc bag, microwave cuisine, corn mazes, isolated purple mountains, mustard yellow cloudy nights, old men with headphones plugged-into library computers watching full-screen spaghetti western movies, watching Donnie Darko with the person who took your virginity:

Purple Julia E. Kimbrough building, Vance Avenue,
*puts the Gospel of Jesus Christ in your ass*
Gustave Caillebotte’s lemon & oysters,
aMSa’s Yoshi maintaining shield pressure,
blue turquoise stone bolo tie in between
a rattlesnake-skin leather jacket;
Butchered Corpses Stacked Like Sand Bags,
Walnut Christian Brothers
Witness Immaculate Conception,
Auschwitz found its new Outfit:
Immediate Incineration,
Ashes dry needled into bedsheets
Wrapped around the faces of angels;
Skulls covered by white death,
Winking faces hide in the shapes of
Dirty convenience store floor tiles;
Dreams of memphis-milano jet skiis and
Neon wave racers float in black computer space;
The running away fantasy,
the bag full of Walmart underwear
and razorblades;
sitting on train tracks while you
wait for your friends to find you;

“I grew up in suburban tract housing during the 2008 housing crisis, except my house was the only house that was actually built and sold, the rest were abandoned, unfinished; wet wooden planks and half-drunk gatorade bottles rolling into mud pits; yellow tape flags standing at half-staff; being constantly surrounded by construction and tipped over porta-potties; bulldozers parked in the center of cul-de-sacs watching, waiting; my friends and I would run through the unfinished homes playing tag and leap-frog, whoever got hurt first would be the loser with a 3 inch puncture wound; I stepped on so many nails my friends started calling me Tetanus (tet-anus); the last time my friends and I played before leaving the state, this guy threw a hammer in the air and yelled seeing the trajectory, before i could react the hammer landed on my face and knocked the lights out of me for a good two or three seconds; the downward force split my lip open real bad, i couldn’t move my neck around for weeks after that; i will say, the pain I remember, i could tell you about it in great detail, but as for the chances of the hammer hitting my face, I couldn’t;”