Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Apologies to Brautigan

Revenge of the Lawn

Potent sod cocktail,
ammonia, soap, beer; lawn drugged,
raked, rolled, vows revenge.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Room service, please

The Butler Model of Tourism

I keep coming back here year after year,
black valise with a busted zipper,
spring-shot lobby divans drained of color,

to press crisp bills into Monte’s
trembling hand, rattling around in his
thread bare uniform with the rest of his

clattering bones and ease myself onto
this sagging bed to listen to the sound
of his creaking cart and scuffling feet

recede into absolute silence down
the dimly lit hall broken only by
the lively conversation between the

man and the woman I can just make out
in the water stained fresco above my head
the two of them lost in a light-hearted

row as if I can’t hear their bald appraisals,
shockingly frank in this wall papered room
with its musty corners and milky windows,

disagreeing only on the degree
of my incremental progression through
The Butler Model of Tourism;

the man making a half-hearted case for
Rejuvenation, the woman straddling the  
thin line between Stagnation and Decline.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Greatest show on earth

Circus Comes To Town

They roll into town in the dead of night
on a blade of track that slices clean across
the prone rib of Main, quick striped gates neatly
chop a graceful swell of cool damp air clean
at the knee, towering starless boxcars

draw up for a chaste kiss, duty bound ranks closed
at parade rest, sweating angle iron and plate
tick off the mounting minutes until swarming
gangs of roustabouts, cropped drop forge faces gathered
into new moon clefts, throw back the doors on

The Greatest Show On Earth; my bundled dreams
Secured in broad canvas and plastered steamer trunks,
Pace the length and breadth of clattering
iron cages, Grin manically behind
cracked stricken pancake plaster, Hobbled

in a steel corral rolling eyeballs set to rim
twin cups of flared nostrils, Murmur silent
prayers of thanks for the net beneath, Spit
shine their tall black boots to a high gloss gleam
that mirror the tiers of jeering towners

lured here night after night by the cool clear
tone of the feathered air horn, keen for some
three ring thrills and chills under the Big Top;
perhaps a nervous elephant perched high above
a still glass of water in a small pool of light.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

laboring in the hereafter

Dry Stone Wall

I emptied my lungs laced a stone snug eying
the pile for the next one destined by shape
and size rocking back on my heels in the

gaping maw of the famished snake uncoiled
gracefully across the undulating
landscape leisurely savoring each and

every morsel nestled there in the leafy
wrack flicking tail lost at the vanishing
point where the low ridge shoulders a stole of

smudged trees then took a deep breath that hitched on
my first word in this new place these autumn
woods my calloused hands voice betraying my

sheer surprise awakening in the sweet
by-and-by to eternal rhythmic labor
taking a moment to recall my last

banalities, marvel at the leaves fired
by the setting sun and dream of you there
just out of reach behind this dry stone wall.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Holding Ground

I leave town on a thin scar
In search of a good vein

To snake around the marsh land
On riddled higher ground  

canopy shredded in silent
blinding fusillades

that drive back the implacable night
under the strictest orders

to hold my ground
at any cost

blithely unaware
hostilities have ceased

surrender negotiated
in the lead up to battle

maintaining this position
awaiting my new orders

rehearsing the secret password
the relief column sure to appear.


Monday, May 21, 2012

tea time


Rain into a tea cup lapping at the lip
clearing the last grasp of the spun brim
ceaseless milky blue line humming below
the bulge of flawless skin bending light
sifted down through rent bellies of clouds
tender lens pressed into the palm poised
lightly on our shoulders biding time until
we shrug ourselves free in feint rising plumes.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Book release

A Ruinous Thirst, Selected Poems by Scrum contributor David Hardin, is now available at Amazon.  It can also be purchased as an ebook at  

What's that droning sound?

A new federal law, signed by the president on Tuesday, compels the Federal Aviation Administration to allow drones to be used for all sorts of commercial endeavors — from selling real estate and dusting crops, to monitoring oil spills and wildlife, even shooting Hollywood films. Local police and emergency services will also be freer to send up their own drones.

New York Times

Like the Internet, drones started out as an important military weapon.  The Pentagon used them to stick up tax payers and fly the stolen money to the luxurious mountain top hideaways of private defense contractors and lobbyists.  When they wanted to let off a little steam they used drones to spy on foreigners and kill them when they were up to no good.  It turned out that drones were just as good at killing bad U.S. citizens and it didn’t require due process.  Just like that, the race to make drones commercial was on.  Drones could kill us and sell us stuff, too; lethal like the Internet but just as fun and lucrative.  

·        The Peacock     Developed by a consortium of fashion consultants and retailers, no bigger than a leopard skin pill box hat, the video equipped Peacock targets people guilty of making unwise apparel choices.  Hovering two miles high, it texts fashion alerts to its victims.  Those pastel lycra pants make your ass look huge, you’re way too old to be wearing that get up, buddy and pull up your pants, Lumpy.  The Peacock is weaponized for really egregious violators. 

·        The Big Fat Goose    Financed by the high fructose corn syrup industry and McDonald’s this drone is capable of carrying a payload of soft drinks and snack food.  Hovering above schools, it receives e-orders from young customers and swoops down to make deliveries.  The steady rise in the number of for-profit schools means big windfalls for all the players.  This drone will beam junk food ads to the smart phones of students equipped with school-issue credit cards.  For a nominal fee, the Goose will also send hourly reminders to insulin dependent students to check blood sugar levels.   

·        The Stool Pigeon      The biggest banks on Wall Street got together to develop a surveillance drone to hover over groups of Occupy Wall Street types and beam their images, electronically altered to make them look brown, to the Department of Homeland Security.  The Stool Pigeon can also put a fine point on things by shitting on the heads of Occupiers about to be rounded up for deportation. 

·        The Bird of Pray       The Vatican, Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University and Rick Santorum teamed up on a drone that will receive and answer prayer texts, deliver stern homilies and hover, in the form of a burning pillar of fire, over those with un-confessed sin.  One modal, the Crusader, targets non-Christians.  A humanist media wag dubbed it the homonymic Bird of Prey.  Santorum was livid until someone explained the meaning of homonym. 

·        The Peace Maker      What do you get when you cross the NRA with Facebook?  This sleek baby, shaped like a dum-dum bullet, remains in the air 24/7 to transmit the personal firearm data of those around you to your smart phone.  It takes all the guess work out of figuring out who’s packing, firepower capability and magazine capacity.  It’s never been easier to “Friend” a potential target or “Like” their Glock.  Low on ammo?  Punch in your personal pin and special Stand Your Ground pre-empt code and The Peace Maker will draw down on any character you deem suspicious.   

·        The Dodo          The American Petroleum Institute and the Republican Party put their heads together and came up with a drone that will fly low over coastal cities and broadcast upbeat messages like: “The water’s not rising, you’re just getting shorter” or “Hot?  You call this hot?  This ain't so hot” and “Nothing to worry about.  Just a little thunderstorm.  This’ll blow over in no time”.  The Dodo will also be deployed over dusty western states to broadcast the sound of gurgling streams, babbling brooks and cascading waterfalls.  Equipped with an acetylene torch, this drone is the perfect tool for clear cutting forests of unsightly wind turbines.