Joe Atkins

Two Poems

Jason Bateman is a Soldier Being Shot At.

The need to affirm what we are emits from every movement.
I watch the television, include you in my daily life.
I am the reflection of a war, on a warring civilization,
Writing poetry. I am not a marble maker.
It is important to know what we are not.
The process of negation becomes growth.
I am the bird bone feeling of a summer Thursday night.
Drinking alone, which is cliche, lonely drinking the night.
What issues are there behind this, intention?
Am I stabbing my premature thoughts into the keypad,
Blinding myself with the glowing light without purpose?
How can any movie end with Jamie Foxx saying,
“I told her we were gonna kill em all”?

I watch the fans spin forward then quickly backward
& feel like Yeats, except my wife doesn’t tell me stories
From the perspective of a Roman. She tells me
Other stories from her family, about drugs & abuse
& redemption. I feel wht suburban because of this.
I am wht suburban because of this. I am the restless.
I am the satiated. I am the spilled drink staining into the floor.
But no matter how Downey I put this,
It comes out the same, like making it rain.
I am the carnage lulling you to sleep,
Which means I am not the dry heave waking you
From the dream where you have a friend to drink with.

Better Homes & Gardens.

Day completes itself with a firewall
In the same way lilies twist themselves
From soil. This technique hinges on something
Else, a poly-carbon that didn’t exist in literature
Before science. When I said I loved you
I meant I loved to love you & I loved you too.

The new matheme of how you’re feeling:
Cyber-generic roses, a pixelated homepage.
We touched each screen to another—
Virtual florist shop, myspace, avatar, blogroll,
Emoticon—& it felt like osmosis feels:
Constantly starting up within you

& outside of you. All this smothering updates yr
Deflection.exe: heat resistant, calculated & viral.
In the system files organized as ctrl + h, viewing history,
There are hidden you artifacts, cache cleared
With an accidental left click. Understanding
In the excesses of our program files & solution centers

Is where I lose you unceremoniously for sure,
As at the standby, turn off, restart moment.
We’re anxious about logging off or being late
In our monthly feeds, RSS cycles, to the movies—
Yr soundtrack quality, shots of forest
Horizons, or screen stage backlighting.

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