Allow Me This

Engulfed by calculations of how emotions should feel, so utterly given to the tribulations of the ghosts that hang about our shoulders like dead hairs, that is the moment you will begin to forget what love means.

When you become what you preach against, an open milieu of your own counter-accusations spoken in the same dialect as the language with which you were harried by your howling pursuers, that will be the next moment where you will exist apart from and without love.

Almost drowning in an ocean of stale missives and corrosive memories, floating like bad clams that won’t open in a boiling pot, you have grabbed me in your arms and smashed your hammer into my sealed shell and extracted my tiny shivering heart so that you can suck out its poison, picking me from your teeth with a toothpick shaped like one of cupid’s blood-stained murder weapons.

Only distance and wanton disregard await us now. There will be no more warmth, only recrimination and suicidality and hot geysers of blood from old wounds reopened, infected with all this time, all this time that has turned so malignant as if our time together itself has turned into a fanged beast that will provide only a shadow and fear for us to cower beneath while we count the blessings of our own misguided attempts at refurbishing our insides with one another’s.

Lining our pockets with our sanctimony and delight at our counterpart’s mistakes and each halting attempt at understanding will bring even grander misunderstanding until we can no longer identify this conversation as taking place in any language at all, but just unfamiliar noises playing out in familiar melodies: pain into rage, fear into a segue of gestures meant to look like strength that only showcase the fragility of weak hearts.

We will beat each other into even greater submission than the world we escaped together, playing house in our raccoon-eyed reflection sitting in a pile of disabused notions. The junkie and the whore, never knowing who was who, but always knowing both were in the room and waiting to be paid in full.

Blood being viscous and us being vampires, we are greedy to gather the remnants before the great coagulation drowns out our argument and we are left mute, deaf to everything except our own vacancies.

Opening my eyes to the vastness of our love’s many formidable traps we set that have sprung into the dirt past our broken ankles, unsettling the earth leaving the remainders of ourselves amidst our grief, the lamenting farmer reconciling with the fire that consumed his harvest by telling himself the soil will ripen after the ashes settle.

What is this thing that we have now upon us? This frigid little rock scratching between the palms of our hands we hold like the thorns the penitent keeps in his shoes to flagellate his feet on his trek up to god at the top of a mountain only to be felled by a jade, gangrenous sore replacing his fever-dreamed visions of immaculate redemption with the sober death of an atheist.

Leaving this hospice suite to avoid the grating sounds of the dying’s last raspings, gone back to the orphanage where we abandon ourselves once again, squeezed back into the eye of the needle, come squeezed back into a cock, our blood squeezed back into our open wrists and air into our dried up, shriveled little lungs that shriek out:

Only love could hurt this good.


The Grande Dementia

The Grande Dementia






the air I breathe, smoke,
my tongue unspent ash from a cigarette,
a broken fingered dance on a page,
like knives that nick instead of stab,
and guns that jam,
a trigger on my finger commiserating.

the holey craters behind my eyes,
my own doors to nowhere,
where the only rule is: “do not survive”,
biding my time that isn’t my time,
waiting for a flock of starving crows,
to carry my mutterings into the sky.

i have a flower growing out of my brain,
a beautiful red rose made all out of pain,
that blooms like buried doves,
and inside of every screwdriven divot is one unrequited love,
pretending i’m crippled, with a notarized contract that reads,
“you are not to be forgiven.”

my whole soul tainted red,
with pity in my chest for the psychopath that lives in my basement,
a small gesture of goodwill for all the craven and wicked,
burning good witches,
down in the valley’s unguarded prison chapel’s kitchen.

Up Behind The Clouds

Up behind the clouds,
me down beneath the ground,
eyes of stilted slits,
finding starry eyed stars,
just to stare down,
just to get even with

My big blind telescope in a world,
that’s a vandal’s braille,
i hear the clinks of glasses,
in my head i hear the wails,
siren songs, singing spelling wrong,
as always, the petty flesh will fail

Potted palm fronds, flitting about in gusts,
for all we’ve done that isn’t wrong,
a song written in dust

Add weight to my shoulders, break back and repeat,
release nothing until depletion, mixing iron into meat,
drink wine with dead soldiers’ clamors, pleading for the ink,
one pen left to write with and so we write until we’re weak

Leave the rest to the weary,
i’ll write so the half of me that thinks,
doesn’t have to think so scary,
for blessed is the one,
the one that surrenders nothing,
except the right to breathe until he decides he’s


You’re No Better (probably)

The Victor, a lion resting in my chest,
waiting to breed, to breathe,
waiting to feast on meat.

Bloodborne antonyms, can’t spell no no mo,
I got my little empty trinkets,
early onset, trying to forget,
all the things I remember, from so long ago.

Yes, the platinum in my eyes has dulled,
the dew on the web of the spider,
I sip into a lull, foregone conclusions,
doing things wrong, catching spiritual contusions.

Lord forgive me, all I am is the thinking thoughtless, a human being.

Claws for teeth and bullets for fingers,
gingerly testing for taste,
letting the brew simmer.

This road is long and filled with potholes that break axles,
taxidermies for friends, leaving no doubt,
about who is really the asshole,
unassailable vassal of things other than nice,
break myself off a crucible and go around pretending I’m Christ.

Rats into mice,
huge vicious bubonic rats from cute little, white mice.

I know nothing except the truth of pain,
spare me or sacrifice me, lacerate me,
just make up your fucking mind,
and have at me.

Of This I Will Give

Of This I Will Give

And and aaand the light from my cigarette will blind you and burn you,
from under the cover of my fire blanket and you will thank me!
your eyes like plankton – all coming and going,
a feline face with antipsychotic properties playing monopoly
over my days

Ten oil drums full of the paste of my ways, boiled one screaming infant that knew to run,
before he could walk, “here, have a gun” and scream your best scream,
save room for
and there will be every flower for every person at every time mandated by federal law

From inside sleep I come and eat, uselessly,
handicapped by the world,
all the ugly artistry in all the parts of me being defiantly wrested from me backwards into walls and liquor,
poetry is a progressive disease and I keep getting sicker
dragging out my cigarette so it lasts a little bit longer

Fire your weapon,
the world is a nuclear ashtray with a blast radius like a face that heaps insults on to the backs of beggars and blind men, please blind men with sirens and let the wolves loose, eat tires,
roll on your back and dangle the world from its strings onto all of the everything,
until you become the person who’s hurting so bad they’re willing to shed nothing certain to be happy,
strike deals with the gods and squint into the darkness like
the flickerings of dead stars




The empress prison sentence(s), lascivious black eyelashes, your face lacks the pretension that belies fatuous compassion, all this mentionless ambulance driver-patient confidentiality sung from wound pond to wound national park:


If there was, I would have found out how to be both brave and fast, I would have reached into my chest through my ass and removed the piece of refuse and I’d have thrown it into the trash – where all bad, slimy, smelly things ultimately go.

Everyone’s got a number and the skies are not flowering down on Algiers. 

My shoulder blade hurts as it slices down, deep down into my back.

I have an itch.

Light a match.

I’ve been repressed. Sinking down my torso, the bosom of human frailty and I’m close to understanding how hell works. I can hear my organs discussing how best to ruin themselves as slowly as possible so they can feel that I can feel every single cell hurt.

Ran away with a pair of gnarled scissors and came back with a leery eye and a small twitch at the right corner of my mouth. My arms how they flail, fingers stretched out into the sky which are broken off into crusts for the birds to eat ending at my forehead.

Keep receipts and follow advice.

Die on time.

Lighter Fluid


Forty-four magnum pillows and art as weeping willows,
long strands of art falling like the hair of your beloved,
infested with almost-beauty so bad your soul catches fire,
faces with faces that cut razors with razors, throw fire on pages,

Blow smoke on the fever,
float down a river made from memory with oars made from ivory and ebony,
elephantine sense of smell for the cane that walks the blind to and from,
hell and hell and hell will rebel into the heart of all that you buy and sell,

Throw fire on pages and fill up your lighter,
get a sense of yourself and burn a writer,
ashes to smashed faces with glass in your eyes,
smokestacks so high you can’t reach but you try,

And the last thing you will need is lighter fluid,
cigarettes will suffice unlit and glasses empty of drink,
the cellar doors of your soul, closed and opened, pry them open,
find the blast furnace and throw fire on your pages before you burn them.

Alex Reading “Relapse”

This is Alexander Ziperovich reading a heartrending piece at Wordplay 2014 in Seattle and is a written piece that was excerpted from his upcoming memoir, The Beautifullest, for the occasion.

The Origin of Loneliness

The Origin of Loneliness






The pendulum of the sun stolen from the ground to vanish back into the dirt of the earth
that’s where our aloneness begins, our terror of having and not having ourselves
the sun’s abandonment of us
every day of our lives
evasively slips away
like it wasn’t ever
there at all

The moon rises to fill the gaping abyss that is the sky when the sun no longer burns
the desiccated, glowing moon, injured and broken, showing us our fragile reflection
dark holes that lie beneath the moonshine, a pockmarked face, a pained face
a face we know when we examine ourselves because it is like our pained face
the sun’s violent, hysterical burning, us desperate for its wonderful agony
leaving us melanoma to take from us our skins and lives but leaving warmth
the moon is harmless and beautiful
alone and ugly, like us
but without the light
given by sun’s burn
we die, because
we cannot
see each

And How We Are Slaves

Our Heart

O, things that sparkle
O, things that glitter
O, things that shine like glass bottles of liquor

How they flit, angels beneath our eyelids
Dead, false prophets singing in silence
Phantom spirit songs, selling what I wish
Plastic apparitions, razors at our fluttering mindlessness –

Eyes so sensitive, certain metallic euphoriant,
bejeweled, dazzling handcuffs for the souls, the souls we are at war within

Trade a lost Rolex for a lost love
The glamorous glimmering things, the things we lock onto ourselves,
Affectionate diseases of affect bequeathed us like molten sewage to feed from,
And we need some!

O, how we need some and all of it all to stall the gnawing in our jaws,
These glinting knife prizes to pry open our non-resolve as our resolution,
Our solution to avoid the poison of becoming involved in the hearts of us,
These fucking hideous beautiful things and how they mock us into inanimate sawdust

O, how they torment our feeble eyes
O, how they slake our hearts’ thirsts
O, how they lie, how we let them lie

Exchange a hunk of metal content,
Slaves overtaken and overpowered by twinkling nonsense,
Satan will be waiting in a cavern, laughing hysterically, vomiting diamond encrusted non-men…

Alex & Spider

Alexander Michael Ziperovich

when the spider finally died, its quivering throes of death no longer,
i lost some of my fear yet some of my fear grew stronger,
i killed that spider with a gruesome finger,
now that spider,
he sits in my dreams, whispering things, a crawling, lingering fiend,
remnants of the plagues in my mind that do not care,
sentiment like throwing an ice cube in the jaws of a polar bear offered meat,
hatred/contentment, nothing so bitterly sweet,
but the taste of broken, fixed again redemption heavens,
and i crawl and i speak- i killed that spider with the hand that i write with, and the spider will forever kill me,
he’ll be there inside those nights that i fight with,
those nights that are blood from knife slits,
those nights that take a man,
turn him into a knives kiss with just one lip- a transaction;
life maxim turn into a Phoenix, dazzle em, sassy castle on the hill-
look your eyes into their eyes and kill as they kill,
the spider in my pillow plotting, following my breath,
me staying awake to monitor the great monstrosity in my head,
even with enough water and bread, this monster,
he keeps coming and he keeps wanting more than i can

And The Carcass Shall Rot

by Alexander Ziperovich

My lover woke up and told me she had dreamt of an eagle methodically eating her family and then itself, shooting in and out of the sky like a needle sewing the skin of the world.

The days grow like distended shadows, my clothing doesn’t fit right, honesty has left me  a partially healed wound, badly weeping.

The absurdity is becoming more and more disturbing every day and every day I wish for a light that does not blind me and a darkness that does not blind me and a life that does not itch me and a death that does not come.

The humor of these gallows; they are laughing like mad men, like mewling donkeys, like forest fires consuming your children.

I am not awake.

I am not asleep.

This is not heaven or purgatory or hell.

The tide is rising and there is the eroded face of a cliff in either direction forever above me.

There is loose soil in my claws, there are crushed flowers beneath my feet, dead moths stuffed in my mouth.

There is fire and heat, there is prison on demand television, there is food and shit and shelter.

This place is made from women you can never placate and men you can never become, a tiredness that will not rest, love unrequited, life unlived and the humiliation of the effort of trying to resolve any of it all.


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