needed silence

you say hello, the desire for
constructive conversation
melted halfway, ice cubes
thrown into a waxing cup
where coffee rests level
to small, sleepy secrets
that tease our clear beads
spinning on dry ground.

Cats No. 85 and 86 of the 500 Cats Project

after you begin

pushing through
the rusted abrasion
that, for a little while,
left you thinking twice
about floor plans started.

whether they’d pay for themselves
within the almost rude visibility
of uneven paint, scratches on walls
reminding you of detached voicemails
so flat, and barely a fine example,
of how one relays quaint rejection.

spend some time
by dimming stoplights
meeker than all your points
made with mechanical pencils
broken thanks to their stubborn will.

Cat No. 84 of the 500 Cats Project

taking care

I scratch my head, befuddled
and rattled, just a bit.

groups of three arriving soon,
extra packet of sugar inching
deeper into singularity’s core,
rainfall shines off tiny teeth.

I shouldn’t see the surprise,
mattress stuffed with old news.

foam laughing on a flat surface,
breaking into stairs the way
eyes become lime green flashlights,
extrapolating truth from debate.

I continue to walk cautiously
like children hiding candy.

Cat No. 83 of the 500 Cats Project

on break

work a good job.

advice seeming sound
though butterflies grin
with such taunting quickness.

I glare, stare, as hard as one possibly dares when it feels like fried eggs litter the street, their whites like paper towels absorbing complaints and greetings and backtalk I understand too well, but do not adopt. Sometimes tree branches play their tricks like perpetually red stoplights. We think it’ll rain and fetch our umbrellas. Later, we’ll juggle our heavier bags, shoulder blades caught in summer’s pressure.

breathe the savory dream.

Cat No. 82 of the 500 Cats Project

disappearing frown

you know that sadness
falls or floats
like a rubber ducky
staring you down
and announcing
he will live, indebted to none.

eye the filling,
cherries that push
a favorite graham cracker crust
to the finishing line
though blue porcelain
remains in cabinets
that rattle of complacency.

petals continue an awkward debate
uneven, all leaves barely cutting.

Cat No. 81 of the 500 Cats Project

bigger slices

mid-afternoon to-do list
suddenly bursts into
scarlet relief.

waiting on the highest porch and falling down at the slightest sound
made by cars laughing at “yield” signs and most things resembling them.

stay a while
and console yourself
counting hangnails on long thumbs.

the lonely man at the corner reminds us everyday that five is a lie
and fourths make up the most filling portions of award-winning pies.

one nose, single brain
tracking the last dime
with no light criticisms.

Cat No. 80 of the 500 Cats Project

the daily

Firecracker ice cream truck
now accepts debit cards
and slows itself only beside
those on bikes, adults
who fan themselves, pained smile
aching from sugary concentrate
dripping down the insides,
little cup melting, its base
never solid while pink
bursts through the old floor
that leaves the palm cut
like the quick, like appointments
rushed even when patients
come fifty minutes late
as principle asks for its check
without fail, and punctuality
is a luxury sporadic, but yes,
you do what’s expected, things
that you decided were worthy
of your not-so-constant signature
inflamed with inkblot dots
when knuckles around the pen
grow white, our whipped cream.

Cat No. 79 of the 500 Cats Project