scarecrow poetics/essays

Sunday, March 19, 2006


My Formal Sleep...

The ridged perfection of my sleep: on my semi-side (which side
doesn’t matter of course) leg cocked in balanced tension with what’s
going on with my arms, shoulders, neck, and everything
in between and beyond, like some very formal sculpture, where
every muscle, tendon, and twitch is accounted for with an exact
counterpoint, whether I’m in Greek Olympic shot-put pose or
tightly gripping my hard dick in sexual frustration beyond
blinding or bitterly coiled and ready to strike out at this terrible life
and all it has done to me …


Allow me to release the pain and anger of my failures that so
haunts me, that drives me into a rage where I’m continually
taking swings at the empty darkness of my walled eternity
thru flailing dreams remembered or not, while also plotting
new ways to hate myself, new ways to punish myself for all
the lies I’ve told myself that shielded me from the flowering
cowardice that has always kept my life from being what
it could have been, should have been, what it should be …

Oh God or Gods! Oh myself!—Allow me the gift of deep sleep,
allow my body to splay wherever it needs to under covers warm
and luxurious, as a by-product of a life that is finally on track,
a life that has finally been accepted by a man who has always
hated himself, by a man whose heart seems to have been broken
at birth by a world that he doesn’t feel has ever really wanted
him, by a world that seems to have commanded that his love
be left forever dying on the vine …

Richard Woodard © 2006.

ROB WOODARD was born in Anaheim, California in 1964 and raised mostly in the nearby Long Beach area. After graduating high school, he dropped in and out of various community colleges and worked mostly in restaurants in southern California, Hawaii, and Australia, while taking breaks to wander aimlessly across big swaths of the globe. During these years he wrote consistently in search of his voice as a writer. Frustrated by his lack of progress, he returned to school and eventually obtained bachelors and masters degrees in anthropology from California State University, Long Beach. After a brief stint as a college professor, he returned to working in restaurants and writing. Burning Shore Press recently published Heaping Stones, his first novel. What Love Is, his second novel, is scheduled to be released by the same house in the summer/early fall of 2006. He is currently writing poetry, book reviews, and a journal.



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