Drinking Music

guitar eyes

drunk on that


scream low

smug eyelashes

take bastards

into heaven

hot lights

red clay

a little piece of

that July highway

a little relief

from god


Found Poem: pages 45-72 of Trash by Dorothy Allison.

This poem was first published in my collection Lupercalia.

Photo by Mariana Vusiatytska on Unsplash

Hotel Magic

pelvic bone


painkiller hotel

and hunger

cold coffee the

shattered lover




in the









Big Dipper




Found poem. Source: The New York Times, April 2014.

This poem was first published on my old blog Chewing Wormwood and then republished in my collection Lupercalia. (I can’t believe I remembered my old blog’s name!)

Photo by Ph B on Unsplash

We Hold All of Our Hurts Together

a handfull of darkness

serpent’s reach

the stars my destination

driving blind

heavy time

the new moon’s arms

adulthood rites

city of illusions

time out of joint

a graveyard for lunatics

i will fear no evil

words are my matter

midnight robber


a maze of death

beyond this horizon

the godmakers

the crack in space

the cat who walks through walls

dreams must explain themselves

voices from the street

merchanter’s luck

eye in the sky

something wicked this way comes

sister mine

the green brain

the dragon in the sea


farewell summer


double star

whipping star

lilith’s brood

stranger in a strange land

wave without a shore


A found poem made up of titles by Nano Hopkinson, Octavia E. Butler, C.J. Cherryh, Frank Herbert, Alfred Bester, Ursula K. LeGuin, Ray Bradbury, Robert A. Heinlein, and Phillip K. Dick

Photo Credit: Mr. J

Ramshackle Houses and Southern Parables Found Poem

My awesome friend Kathy released not one but TWO poetry collections recently, and a piece of speculative fiction with an excerpt from her forthcoming novella, The Reaping. Grab your copy here!

I wrote a found poem using the end words of Kathy’s poem “Marriage” from Ramshackle Houses & Southern Parables.

Mermaid’s Songbook

1. A Boat Alone*

phosphorous moon


a boat



of eyes and


dancing with

the horizon

the horizon


dancing with


singing of

eyes like

phosphorous moons

over a

boat alone

2. The Witch’s Song

love is spinning in the deep

mine is mine and

music is music

if you’re wishing for escape

love is love and

knives are knives

love is waiting far away

a song is a song and

sweet is sweet

if you wish for what you aren’t

love is love and

yours is yours

love is love


hate is hate


love is love again

come and see what I’m selling

mine is mine and

music is music

all the wishes you could wish

love is love and

knives are knives

when you regret, regret with your heart

a song is a song and

sweet is sweet

the tide will carry you home

love is love and

yours is yours

love is love


hate is hate


love is love


3. Dead Mermaid Singing

I can’t give you lapis less I open

a vein and rupture my organs in

just the right way

staining my blood

in a shade that will say:

“I love you more than that hand that gave you your lapis.”

I can’t give you sunset staining a canvas less I open

a vein and clot my obsessions,

fall into dusk

with a gesture that screams:

“I love you more than that hand that painted your sunset.”

When the waves call me back

to dance in the foam

you’ll never know how much

I hate my home.

I can’t give you music less I tear

out my throat and fling all my chords

to the sky-loving storm

to play on her way to crash down your door.

She’s the only one who knows

I do love you more.

The princess is so pretty,

her demeanor is divine

but her love will break in the shadow of mine.

When the waves call me back

to dance in the foam

I would open my veins and my throat

on your shore ever

singing ever singing:

“I do love you more.”

4. Redemption*

the grave sea

breaks and tears

the burning


of all that

has passed,


your fragile



These poem first appeared in Lupercalia.

Photo source: Waterhouse

A Boat Alone: Found poem. Source: Aquí te amo by Pablo Neruda.

Redemption: Found poem. Source: Las víejas del oceano by Pablo Neruda.


A monstrous smile

moves in the wildness;

you said: get the quick

victory. Take me on faith.

Lost people remember

the fire, the starlight,

the luminous morning moving

in the darkness.

You keep talking; you

Need me doing like I’m

told. I didn’t

really think of

the subway, music

like red fire, the world

looking like the enemy.


This poem was first published in The Found Poetry Review under the name Jessica Otto and was re-published in Lupercalia.

Found poem source: pages 89, 146-7 of Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.