John Beer


J. Beer 1969-1969

It was when they determined that I had been born dead
That my life became easier to understand. For a long time,
I wondered why rooms felt colder when I entered them,
Why nothing I said seemed to stick in anyone’ s ear,
Frankly, why I never had any money. I wondered
Why the cities I walked through drifted into cloud
Even as I admired their architecture, as I pointed out
The cornerstones marked “1820,” “1950.” The only songs
I ever loved were filled with scratch, dispatches from
A time when dead ones like me were a dime a dozen.

Sonnets to Morpheus ["I know kung fu"]

“I know kung fu.” It won’ t bring back the world.
5:15 a. m.: I wake from another dream,
the same as every dream. A man builds a ship
in my chest. Each of the sailors
carries by her breast a picture of her sister.
The ship is not the image of a ship.
Beyond its sails there are no stars.
The water is only water because it’ s black.