jdubqca

poetry by j matthew waters

if we ever get out of here


wanting to go deep
past the beginning
the starting place
keeps changing

self-medicating
with various devices
unlikely approved
by the powers that be
haphazardly curing
that which ails me
one unforgivable sin
at a time

before the cock
crows (again)
I tell myself I’ve never
denied you
not in this life
nor the next




august two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

ghost cats of the historic mill district


the walls are rock solid here
repurposed mill district buildings
turned into restaurants
& other retail establishments
studio & two bedroom efficiencies
on 2nd & sometimes 3rd floor
anything higher than that
allegedly under reconstruction

most of the domesticated
& feral felines of the day
enjoyed their finest of nine lives
in the late 19th & early 20th centuries
their dominance still apparent
to this very day
chasing real life moths & mice
from one building to the next





august two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

keeping in sync with boulder colorado


your life
is in the palm of your hand
sometimes you charge it
by day
other times by night
depending upon so many factors
some of which
are under your control
but mostly most of which
are certainly not


there will come a day
people will no longer
need to plug themselves in
but rather be recharged
by the bright yellow sun
constantly coming
in & out of their lives
like atomic clockwork





august two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the world isn’t full of love


the constant call to arms
loudspeakers in the city streets
projecting all the romance languages

young boys & girls tilt their heads
counting years on their fingers
virtual tactical gear painted on their skin
marching to the snare & the bugle

a caravan of tarp covered vehicles
transport wet-eared recruits
populating newly formed camps
outside the danger zone

soon the city will be empty
and children in their infinite wisdom
find what the world lacks is love





august two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

repairing past afflictions


that childhood moment
when you were maybe seven or eight
magically reappearing in your mind
the accuracy of the recollection
of little importance
the images as vivid as the orange
sun sinking into the blue-green sea
the waves crashing the shoreline
tumbling over themselves ad infinitum
somehow making the past
much clearer than the present
leaving you with a slight smile
and a single teardrop





august two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

black hole pond


we’ve been skipping stones
out of the earth’s atmosphere
and getting much better at it

like across a body of water
the rock will eventually sink
mostly likely to the bottom

but seriously how much different
can it be from this advantage
compared to way way out there





august two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

tornado alley


it was complete madness
throwing blueberries into the blender
what next
peanut butter & a rabbit’s tail
a few dead triple A batteries
a mix of trail mix including
rocks & such

the wizard opens the lid
and there it is again
unleashed & spinning madly
heading straight toward your dream
cows & pigs in flight
will you awaken
or will you die





august two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

moon dance


sometimes you step
backwards to see if it
can still be done
& then I say to you
there you go again
turning back time

how else are we
able to explain
the forces felt
the ones undefined
only occasionally
tugging at our sides





july two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

by land or by sea


what shall we do
after we have seen it all
said the turtle
to the oracle
—shall we sail
far below the ocean
never to be seen
on land again
or shall we continue
to suffer
as we are
pretending all is grand





july two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

early Sunday morning

Dancing is like bank robbery
it takes split-second timing

— Twyla Tharp

black spray paint to cover the lens
it’s nearly 4 pm at the ATM

the sheriff’s passed out
his deputies going through the motions
three wide awake & calling final finals
two approaching REM sleep
& one sporting a newly pressed uni

by the time she steps on the gas
the black F-150 & yellow forklift
cruise down county home road heading for
the safe house
while back on main street
the Bank of Podunk USA
is soon to find itself
down one 24/7 teller





july two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

watering selected recollections


a child on tiptoes
an empty pail by her side
neck bending backwards
one hand reaching for a butterfly
the other clenching a piece of sky

it’s the things you recall
that easily survive below the surface
says the voice soundlessly
the one growing restless from time to time
secretly reliant on its counterpart

carrying the pail of water
from the well at the top of the hill
the child could never be more real





july two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

Cruise Ships & Aeroplanes


Much is going on these days this much we already know

the impossible is the New Normal
the Old One rewritten into temporarily discarded Fairy Tales

Bad Guys overshadow the Good Ones
the latter working haphazardly behind the scenes
occasionally sipping Whiskey & smoking Sensimilla

Nellie has become a distinct possibility alternating between
Home Base & Lake Geneva or outside Salt Lake City

the Cookie Monster too
his/her/their creators learning to clone in real time
he/she/they seen on Cruise Ships & Aeroplanes
a few spotted paddling along the Red River of the South

there are Time Capsules continually lifting off into space
& if you have enough Coin we may never see you again





july two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

repeating history


the problem with the world today
we’re living in the past
like a smoker who can’t kick the habit
we’re unable to quit killing
whether sanctioned by allegedly legitimate
power brokers
or straight up civilian violence

when I was a kid we played
cowboys & indians
cops & robbers
doctor & nurse
role playing because we were left
to our devices
and our parents bought us weaponry
and any kind of idol we would ask for

on sundays we were reminded how evil
we truly were
and twice or maybe three times a year
we were forgiven all our sins

come monday however
we were right back at it
perpetuating the only thing that made sense





july two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

where the gods that be


forget about schooling
it feels like we’re taking
nothing but tests
one after the other
a good three years now
time & place popularly
known as alien nation
where the gods that be
pick & choose their own fights
cast out into the stars
only to reenter the barrier
[by way of meteorites]
spreading their petty hostilities
throughout all the lands





july two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

revolution


Don’t you know
Talking about a revolution?
It sounds like a whisper

          — Tracy Chapman

it’s already here
don’t you feel your life
dramatically changing
what little wealth
you may have possessed
gone like a whisper

don’t you know
everyone is running
running away
from reality
don’t you know
they’re talking about
a revolution

it’s not too late
to turn the tables
to get out while the
getting’s good
jumping ship or
leaving the welfare lines
before it’s too late





july two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

shadow boxing


it’s better to have the gloves on
you never know
what might come out of
left field
where the shadows start to creep in
around six pm

though the stadium is empty
your mind sees it standing room only
like back in ninety-nine
having lost your way returning
for a hometown match

the moon that night
was high above & bulging
as you kept swinging & missing it
until eventually tiring
setting yourself up
& knocking yourself down





july two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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