All You Want is to Sink (a Revised Version)

by Darryl Price


into another bigfat vat of boiling lies. It's sick, man, the way you'd 

rather dig for supposed (royal) buried treasure than make a beautiful thing happen, break

your back, break your spirit, over and over until there's nothing left 

to begin the story with again. All that gets you is a 

grinning skeleton for a sock puppet pal, an unidentifiable worn stone singing

like a ditch in the pouring rain at the bottom of your 

favorite drinking glass. Anyway you'll never return that posted flavor. It's too 

late for all that pretty useless nonsense now, isn't it? The best 

you can offer us is a daily huff and a shadowy puff on another 

broken cigarette trail. Could you still walk upright? I don't know. Not 

with that stupid holy mirror smashed over your head like an oxen 

yoke. Shake off your sick need for faster strokes, people. You're getting 

old when you should be getting young. The magic has all been 

pissed away like race horses on steroids. Like the cool old days

of bookstores and basements, cigarettes and the 4am sunlight lifting its sleepy

starting to glow fingers off the dirty trash caught up in the 

shaggy sheets like mashed-up paper love birds. All we needed

was a bit of the colorful, Beatle-type luck of old. But that 

once fun movie seems like another worn-bald bear left broken-eyed on the sidewalk. 

We had it all together, friend to friend, but their corporate imaginations 

were nastier than ours. The newly minted politicians used those crazy stupid

word bombs on themselves in order to get to us. How crazy 

is that shit? The only true country is the country of love, 

but you'll never get there the same way twice. And nobody ever 

believes your passport photo is you. And you can have all the 

secret handshakes in the world and still get met with only false 

mistrust. And you can declare yourself to be nothing more but free, but 

the hands that surround you will eventually reach to your throat and 

squeeze. Remember oh please that favorite cool tender line from Joni, didn't 

it feel good? I'm sure as hell it did. I know it 

did for me. And, all things went over the bird painted cliffs after that. 

Even now I hear the threatening sirens, I hear the bawling trains


and the gassed up falling apart cars, I hear the come-ons and 

the music cranked up beyond belief like drinking Jack Daniels through a 

very tiny thin straw. I don't want you to blow away from 

me. How much more plain can I make this? It's not all 

bad news out there as long as we can feel each other 

in here. I don't care if they think that is crap on 

a carnival stick or not. They never cared for poetry anyway. Some

of them made the sad scared choice to live among the boxed

and buried blades of grass like identical moths. That's okay with me. 

This poem says we're still alive in there. It's no religion. Don't

let this song go to your head. Stay with you. Point to 

you. If I could I'd press my fingertips up against yours. What 

else? Maybe softly, maybe not. Things will always get back around to you 

leaving us somehow. Not my lot in life. Now if you will 

forgive me I must be dancing to meet the one who'll gladly

pronounce me back my real proper name before it gets to be too late for us.

Bonus Poems:


by Darryl Price

Tuesday was weird. I used to be a poet. I
wasn't here on Tuesday. I was at my job at
the art museum. We'd just put the Edward Hopper back
up because people were asking for it. I used to
be a poet. So much in life depends on the 
girl. I don't want to get lost but I'm afraid

I already have. Right now I am walking on a 
rainbow on the floor. Now it's gone. I used to
be a poet. I believed in things. But it's pretty 
obvious to me now that you are never going to
need me like that again. Okay, so I used to 
be a poet and you used to like that about 

me. For me it was pure. I don't know what 
it was for you. I used to be a poet. 
Now I am your friend. I used to see words 
as being alive. Possibilities were endless. You were more than
a friend. You were someone I liked to know. That 
knowledge made me think poetically about living an authentic life. 

That was when I used to be a poet. Now 
I'm just Darryl. I stand on rainbows and type out
the colors I can remember for no one. Tuesday was 
weird and today is no different. It's just the same
in a way I'm sure you'd rather not hear about. 
I used to be a poet. That's what they say.

Building This Thing and That Wall

by Darryl Price

The world has long since been bootlegged by madmen. The new

invisible con men are the same as the old

visible con men, hiding and lying

behind their walls of lingering death. There's a weapon

wielding demon hell bent on an insane

vengeance crawling around inside this tough guy's

moneyed flesh suit who would be your willing

angry champion if you so choose it. He

thinks his pale thoughts are his own fleshy dreams. But they

belong to the old self-righteous gangsters


of a sick empire still trying to own

everything and everyone for naught else

but the genocidal trying for ultimate bragging rights. They are

smoke-ringed bored angels, wasting all time, the most

prejudiced dangerous kind. No longer

so interested in doing good works, but in

bigger threats and damaging nightingale

explosions amongst all the innocent

stars of the jungle night sky, blaming every

lending hand in time but themselves for the


smoldering destruction of the all life-

giving forests. It's sad, to be sure, but

it should come as no surprise. The war is

never quite finished with heartbreak. It just

gets handed down. Babies are born melting

into the inequality fight like

so many pelting raindrops. Young men are used like

flat nails to crack down doors with their foolish hard

heads, when all they want is to find someone to

open their saturated hearts to peace. 


Girlfriends weep from every wounded corner,

in every dusty crack of dawn, from every stoned and

broken window, in every stinking smoke

stack town and try to shield the love in their care

from the lust of suffocating hate. And still that's just one

finger smudged revolving picture of life

happening behind the moving cut glass

frontier of our modern times. Listen. There

are others. You make one. You find one. Share it with us. Be the

one. Build not to destroy, but to welcome.  

I Want to Sing To You

by Darryl Price


without looking at the words. I want to draw a picture of you

without setting my hat on fire. I want to swing you around in an open field

without thinking something's bound to go wrong. I want to touch your hands

without resorting to an old map found buried in a book on fairies.


To run with you in the downpour without looking for a quick squeezed

way in. Want to remember your face because it's resting in my fingers like a cherry

pit. I want to sit with you in front of the ocean without

planning to take one shell. I want to find you in a garden


without thinking I should remove my shoes first and put them under a  

rose bush for safe keeping. I want to give you that dance without dropping all blanks

in the chamber for good luck. I want to embrace your name without

falling into an unmade ditch of spears head first. Want to drink your  


trance without going home and putting myself to bed afterwards. I want to

play my guitar like a wounded warrior without having to explain the nature of all scars.

I want to leave my most careless poems on your doorstep without having

to fold up all the moonbeams into neat little rows before I go.

Feb. 2015

You Can Push Things(a daft first draft)


to the back of your mind like a box of unpacked beloved

books if you want, but that's no life I want to explore

any further with you. We don't have as much time as we

once did to believe in something other than an empty bottle of

dreams. Love is still real even when the mud begins to fizzle

and leap out of its own way. That's all I wanted to


say. I don't believe their lies any more now than I did

before I went missing. They want you to spit your love on

the ground like bitter drugs. To tear the bells out of the

golden dragon infested clouds like a fistful of wires. To sink the

last of the flower petal boats with heavy rocks. To smash all

singing birds to death against the brick walls. But I don't buy


their latest diet wars. Their brand name barrels of bargain smoking guns.

Their greasy gravy jars full of deliciously simmering coiled bombs. Their sick

little insurance run churches of the barbecued nightmares of innocent children. Listen.

Love is always going to be all even when all else is

floating to the burning ground. That's what I want you to remember

you already know. I'm not trying to get you to do anything


you don't want to do deep down inside. Don't join anything on

my behalf. I don't care.  Just don't be boring. This poem is

where I stand. It's not some silly broken mystery rotting in a

cave. I live in the same awful world as you. And again.

Love is all you need. They want you to turn in your

hopes, but you know better. Love is like the sky all around. See it.


Darryl Price     Wednesday,July 02, 2014