Wednesday, June 30, 2010

smokescreen's chess

someone told Olov he would not live to see the behind of
smokescreens no stars
the smoldering salmon's squirming
on elements

woman match game
his brain cells stiffened like hell
she says this is
the coming of age
the coming
of control mechanisms

Olov plays chess with
Lena countess
of bitter
british pub tables are
blackened in the window light

Finish Line

Monday, June 28, 2010

after the fall...

by human being

illustrations by rhoda penmarq

the window had fallen in love with the imprisoned bird... all day long he watched her hopping around the bare room...

she crowed every now and then... and stared into his eyes for hours... at these times their eyes shone in a very strange way...

each day the window felt the bird is sitting closer to him... now he could see his own reflection in her black eyes...
and at last... one day... something happened...

the window opened his arms wide... waiting for the bird... she paused for a moment...  opened her wings as wide as she could... and soared into his embrace...

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Mindful abstraction

Pen on paper

Editorial Slant

"Editorial Slant (Your Propaganda or Mine?)"
Collage/Digital - 2010

Friday, June 25, 2010

Gray Dog
digital photo

late winter

Slippery words spew, and I can't stop their flow

I want to paint it
this plaint
I've worded
one thousand
unrecorded instants
only to see both
the deep and tinny
syllables I thought
vibrantly tinted
dissolve into
pale, gooey-bottomed wails

I should pitch it
this paste
to patch an unfrocked
eye searching
puffy tears for atoms
escaped within
abandoned margins
as narrow as
the difference between
my white canvas
and an emptying hand

I have to plug it
this post hole
bored by my frantic
and stencil a sign:
bold letters below
a starched cuff,
its pulseless finger
pointing out
there's one way
round sniveling sounds

Thursday, June 24, 2010

there was also water too

she handed me a card
but it was not as funny
as she had lead me to expect

I did not use an opener
but it may have been a dream
in which I was suddenly growing older

she wanted to be bedded
I was quite sure of that
for she told me so herself

collecting bling for the Ondines
I was also quite sure
that I was not intended

Monday, June 21, 2010

sloppy males

Her claret hair leads me on
oh, I’m just a male
eating ice creams in sport cars
the doors on State Road 2
she says you know me
I’m just a sloppy consumer
feeling sorry for fuck ups

I’m thankful
redhead means communal
I joke (pathetically)
wing mirror in red garden missiles
tree in spherical movement
sandwiched between linen
ice cream
warm asphalt
navy circles on belly



Oh cloudy sky
stay true
and ever blue
upon my eye

For when the
window opens
in she flies

Friday, June 18, 2010

Verb Pronoun

The gap between
the frosted sill
and pane
Above the seat
where stormy clouds
are formed

Below the lakes
which spread and bend
and churn
There sits a heart,
tattered veil

But break it
crumbles when it
hears your name
And moments run,
like raindrops
in descent

The ghosts within
are nameless,
but a rose
She reaches through
the gloomy
looking lines

As faces press
like fingers
on a glass
“For you the sky,
I’ll bend and break
and curve”

With secret
love springs flowing
by design
From here to
Shallow Window,
we entwine

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Acrylic on paper

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

past the point of mere inertia to the line from here to soliloquy

The screaming blazing comet of your head from a nice boot of white
streaks the grey brown void to places where there is no other stuff
to curse you with unnatural pink volume and the yellowness of stars,
a empty dark billow where all is right because all has ceased to be at all
except re-entrant crispiness because the burning ground is all burnt up.

There is no consumer taxonomy for streaking on such a gone degree of orbit
while you flail a dead sock at the eel weir moss that takes your breath away-
black and white scotty magnets on macadam cannot patch that glassy trouble,
nor your helmet made from broken street lamps shield your grey from aliens:
your thirty year detour in primer paint with a down-draft wing of six-cylinder spunk
marked with crusty cedar apple rust always washed out under dark umbrellas.

Orange sunrise on the sherbet dormer reflects your gaze so blank and banal
with that scrufty dog window sill white over the winter bales of grassy seed:
a plump berry of hazy fumes in this sweet and churning perfume of icy ecstasy
encourages the theoretical kundalini of monkeys to stream your long jones live
with hard radio static over the squawks of geese that plainly state the granite statutes.

In a world of ubiquitous metaphor when I click on the light I am a god to you,
just another kind of blackbird with extra tears for the withered little tweaker
who's stealing breath for one more sunset in an exoskeletal bag of crispy chips:

and it's all just a mandala in sands of green, maroon, and rust

about to be swept away.

Faunus Awaits

Sunday, June 13, 2010

After the War


5"x 3"

Sea Moon II

Sea Moon II - 2010
Watercolour and White Acrylic on Paper

A poem

Before you read this poem, you should know that my poetry is not exactly 'avant garde'. In fact, it is old fashioned in terms of style and to a certain extent, even subject matter. But I cannot help myself since I am obsessed with the Old Ones and their words and raspy voices glide down over a century or two to speak to me in my dreams. Furthermore, here at Flowers of Sulfur, I find myself in the company of much more experienced poets, so I implore you not to be, too disappointed....

Could This Be My Dying Hour

What am I to her
but a mere vestige
of a memory long ago
banished to an attic
of lost and discolored

How would she feel
if by chance she came
upon my photograph,
faded and frayed
at the edges and abandoned
by time itself?

Would she frown
at the remembrance
of events best forgotten
and curse the phantoms
of the past disrespecting
her cherished serenity?

Would she forgive me now
that her hair is silvery grey
and the deep black
velvet mane
has slowly over the years,
simply faded away?

These questions I ask
clearly betray,
to me my guilty conscience,
heavily compounded
by a fear that breaks
my cold and calculated reticence.

How strange that Time
which seemed to be
in youth, an eternity,
has miraculously shrunk
into a finiteness through which
I gape in horror-
in horror at my own,

Saturday, June 12, 2010

sometimes when i (01-24-10)

dip it once
dip it twice
dip it again and again

fill one hole
fill two holes
fill all the holes

                                       smoothing a thick coat of wax on each half
the candlemaker tempting the machine full of long
holes single piston serving stripped of its covering
used for cooling some of this heat may be transferred
from the air to the body

on top of
on top of
on top of
on top of

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Third Eye

'The Third Eye'
Acrylic on paper

(First painting I ever sold)

3 poems by John Grochalski

what you’ll get out of it

a nice night
in brooklyn
a good day out
in manhattan
an all right movie
some beer
in a favorite old bar
and this fine thai
along 3rd avenue.
maybe that’s what
your poetry is lacking
like you could move
away from the darker themes
and still write straightforward poems
but maybe every once
in a while it could be a little
bit bright.
not to sound like an optimist
or anything
and i know your influences
never really looked
on the bright side of things
but it’s a nice night
in brooklyn
and we had a good day out
in manhattan
the movie was actually pretty good
even if it preached to the choir
and the old bar wasn’t
as crowded with college assholes
as we thought
and this is a fine thai meal
that we are having
what’s that wine called again?
but anyway i think you should
write a poem about this moment
if you want to
and maybe look at the positive side
of it
instead of searching for the usual
stuff that ends up in your poetry.
maybe just give it a shot
this one time.
but you’ll see that couple fighting over
or you’ll think about the assholes
with their phones at the theater
or that guy that blocked our seats
in the bar
and how we had to stop a few times
so that you could take a shit
because of your stomach
or the fact that new york city
doesn’t care about its literary history
and that’s all you’ll get
out of any of it.

a good friend wherever

the two-bit louse
grabs me
and moves me again.
it leaves me aimless
and amongst strange faces
with ugly intent.
i pass an italian grocery
in a mostly unfamiliar
strip mall,
and the smell of new bread
and fresh sausage
holds me
for a second,
until i remember
the liquor store next door,
where they have
my wine for tonight,
and a couple of bottles
of scotch
for the rest of it.
the liquor store.
like the same old friend
in any city or town
that i’ve ever been to.
the good friend.
the ones who doesn’t call
too much,
or bother me with questions,
but will just sit quietly
with me,
a little bit,
always knowing what i want
without me having
to ask.

genius at work

i wonder what rabalais
would do in a moment like this

what would fante say?



i sit back and listen to the radio
wondering how anne sexton would
capture this moment

the kind of spin that f. scott
would put on it

i think i know what shakespeare
would do

kerouac would set his typer
going like a machine gun

or was that bukowski?

whitman would howl
and jeffers would shut the door
to the word

villon would steal this moment

so might jean genet

in a moment like this
i think about what all the great ones
would do

then i update my profile picture
on facebook

i read a celebrity gossip site
look at old lady porn
and wonder what’s to eat
in the fridge.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Pantoum to an Aging Father

Let's offer up our prayers to a finicky Father
who sits in his segregated heaven, rocking
away senility on that rickety chair
with a spare, tall back wrapped in striped wool blankets.

Who sits in his segregated heaven, rocking?
Our Father, keeping his heart warm against the gusts.
With a spare, tall back wrapped in striped wool blankets
perfectly square (but too small to share with others),

our Father's keeping his heart warm. Against the gusts
and idling time, again he stays busy carving figures
perfectly square but too small to share. With others,
these tokens will help the faithful remain fertile

and idling. Time again, he keeps busy carving figures
on the edges of a pesky map. Mad for expansion,
these tokens will help the faithful. "Remain fertile!"
Father cautions, as he watches a big screen TV.

On the edges of a pesky map mad for expansion,
many errant souls who wander are unable to hear
Father's cautions. As he watches a big screen TV,
the devil's slipping him a low-ball offer to buy

many errant souls. Who wander are unable to hear
news heaven's economy is still struggling, and
the devil's slipping him. A low-ball offer to buy,
our aging Father mulls over hot oatmeal and tea.

the shortest distance

mysterious mounds tingle to
an affectionate touch
(extra long fingers)

dead-end double d expressway
to my devotional moat
(lemon flavored lube)

hesitant sentences
best said with scent
(incense cult)

the fluid spirit rushes to
the stickiest end
(pinecone love)

i tend to interpret the nuances
of others without words
(just give up)

is it a mirage?
a leisurely anarchy?


watercolour, ink on paper.

misplaced camels

Can you hide your fatality behind furnishing?
she asks me in the pasty lodgings
wind lingers in her curtains I feel the
breeze under my costume and shake my skull
as I sit down on the davenport
abhorrence is beta sheets coming together in plasma
carroty woman

churn behind the shut entrance next to me
the ocean puts me out cool fluid
my gentleman awaits
misplaced camel looking at prairie dunes no fortune at all

written on vacation on a grassy beach in Washington state.

Monday, June 7, 2010


when your nightingale songs
are rewarded with a golden cage
your peacock paintings
deprive you of your private sky
when you cannot find any fish
to feed your seagull soul
folly, fake, and foul galore
when there's no mountain or any haven
for your seclusion eagle
your cherished bonds
unwillingly kill your migratory skylarks
when you cannot rejoice in
the hustle and bustle of everyday sparrows
fear the hungry hunters of graceful patridges
as much as
the caring pamperers of homely chickens
when flattering mouths look down upon
your fluttering nightly doves
cumulative honking cars
mute your swan solos
when nobody believes in
phoenixes and simorghs anymore
you find nowhere to hide and hatch
the eggs of your truth
except in your eyes
the adapting

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Where my mind wanders

'Studies- Hands, What lies Beneath'
Pen and Ink+ Acrylic on paper

Friday, June 4, 2010

The Sound and the Fury
digital photo

I took this over the winter, this was during the pre-dawn light. I feel that it adds to the atmosphere, and gives a graying grainy quality that appeals to me.