Well, if you must know…

To the tune of six hundred American dollars,
they spun and turned their collars up, the parlor junkies.
They wore on their feet shoes so clunky
that one almost felt sorry.
How, after all, can such tragedies
be allowed in this, the best of all possible worlds?

Wind came a-churnin’ like a churlish beggar
in baggy pants. The dance continued,
as did the sale of liquor on Sundays,
much to the chagrin of the churchgoing crowd.
They squalled so loudly that they garbled
the content of their message.
They may as well have been pulling steel wool
from their mouths.

A crowd was gathered in the ballroom,
all of them brandishing hot irons
and cynical cartoons. Some called it a boon.
Others took to their hot air balloons
and were never seen or heard from again.
I was already wending my way through
the labyrinthine halls of that piping hot palace,
seeking the solace of someone or other’s bedchambers.

Clamor covered and smothered the event.
‘Twas a fine time to repent,
though nobody could quite remember
the protocol for that. All was overkill,
spilled guilt and hot flashes.
Splashes of a wounded sunset
crept through the window.
Of these, none took notice.

-r. miller

You (second stage mazes)

I’ve only
seen G(g)od in
reflective hues.

Only been religious 
when I woke up next to you.

calling down
fire and mistletoe– cadaverous
brimstone summoned in the style of satanic

Walk a mile burdened by graffiti-stained
and it all starts to
look sepia-toned.

Monochrome brick and mortar
but the aspect
look like single-camera

Sitcom circuity,
and I’m insisting on 70MM
for the run-and-go 
appellate courts.

Keep your eyes
even when
it hurts
to see the


Willie Watt


It’s funny.

I’ve written something
about all of you, and
I painted you in an unflattering hue, while
other times I grasped reality
and made you better.

alone with these ink and lipstick-stained letters, is
it too much to want someone make 
live forever?

Inscribe my essence
on quintessential endeavors, and
be sure to cleverly
the excess.

I’ve had so many naked chests
as headrests,
goddamn it baby,
lately I’m prime-grade
dispossessed of nostalgic
a work
of postmodernism
in verdant
marijuana; and

I need a poem about me
to make it through the

now that she’s gone,
and we only hearken
after the surreality
has sunk its talons

into synesthetic

and the battles
they never could have


Willie Watt



and I’m back to
repeating mantras.

morning’s brutal emptiness, and
we’re writing about the agony

all these crystalline harbingers
of impending drama,
but I’m the only actor on the goddamn

lately I’ve consummated flashback reveries
with black-out rage;
trapped in cages of carnivalesque hatred — and I
hate to say it,
but I wake up every single day
drunk on

liver-drowned swimming pools,
and the hate is
fucking gasoline
without ethanol.

I took away your breath
and all you wanted me to
become — and I’m sorry about that. but

your retaliation outweighed my accidental attacks
so disproportionately
the scales
are finally tipped in my
grotesque favor.

barely legible anger, but
I promise my
were honest.

fuck-ups, but
your vengeance is an ice-cold
hornet’s nest.

forgive the forced rhymes, but
my chest is beating so hard I’m hallucinating
the days
before I almost let you
save me.

baby, don’t hate me
for coming around,
despite everything
we did.

I never meant
a word of it

Willie Watt



language of eyes
we don’t meet.
a finger taps finished wood.
patience is seeing
everyone around you
find their way
to the exit.
energy transforming
into new
to be rehearsed
behind closed doors.

there is a body with no light/
hands/never speak.
suffocated roots/last breath/a   s y m p h o n y.

i don’t want you/to be/a whisper.
i don’t know how to stop/you
my body/has become a name.
i was forced to stand/tall.

i etch sentences in sweaty palms.

it takes  e v e r y t h i n g  to be here.

please/be patient.

the flood is over.


light/is speaking.

Nightmares and Hallucinations

“We’re all running towards a future
we won’t remember.”

I wrote that after I woke up from
another nightmare, and
lately they’ve been particularly vivid—urban kid
living between complementary visions
of reality.

Wanted to ask you to begin again, because
I can’t accept that I’ve lost 
my best friend in the same breath that I took flight and bent willpower into godly ascent; can’t reconcile my one sin
with the pride and turmoil that exists within
bitter coffee grounds inside gray-matter transcendence.

A good story only needs three things:
1)a view of the city,
2)a bottle of whiskey,
3)and a girl;

a)the view has always been there, I guess,
even before I was there to see it;
b)the whiskey came from the Twin Liquors
on the corner of Riverside and Wickersham;
c)the girl…well, that’s  a little more complicated.

Pulp fiction connotation, and
in an inversion of identity masturbation, I
guess you’re the James Dean in this chiaroscuro

Contemplation of the freeze-frame, but you were only there
for a second—hookah smoke lingering around your beautiful
incarnation—and since I saw you last
I’ve had so many surreal hallucinations
that the walls are becoming

You’ve always been the goddess in  our 
story, and I’m sorry
it took me so long to see 
that you’ve been the main character
all along.

But if you’ll permit a song of excess, I’ll devote every run-on sentence to you for the rest of my internet-drunk obsessions  if it means I can place my head on your naked chest again, eat from the bread of your lips and drown in our original sin with bittersweet symphonies echoing between my  ears, and I want to cry every time I hear your voice in my head and everything is suddenly about you and all these pop-songs are about you and all these whiskey-highs are about you and all these sleepless nights are about you and all these nightmares are about you and all these hallucinations are about you and all these thoughts of self-harm are about you and all these nicotine-clouds are about you and all these poems are about you and I know I’m supposed to use punctuation to separate these clauses but honestly I’ve lost the willpower to use commas periods italics quotation marks and it’s just going to have to be good enough when the world is so dark and i never meant to be so pathetic but you’re every perspective i never knew i needed and i know i’m supposed to rhyme in these poems but fuck that 

you’re one of the only reasons i still give a fuck

I just want you to be proud of me,
that’s all.

Willie Watt