These are the poems from ArtCrimes 01
editor, publisher - Steven B. Smith
May 1986
31 poems - 15 poets

If Indication Abnormal

On The Beach
by Amy Bracken Sparks

Until things move according to themselves
I'll stay in this ice garden, listen
to branches move inside themselves, watch
sand smother light in these charcoal
waters that slice and push the ice
into strange pyramid shapes, delve
underneath and hollow them the way
we reshape the dead, style their hair,
paint their nails.

She was a fine, proud woman we say
and see many small coffins trip and turn
in the lake, I imagine the way turtles
at Escobillo gather under a tropical moon,
race to hot sand and ancient urge,
waters boiling in a frenzy.
The men with clubs wait on the beach.

Now there is only this weak light
and spine-ridges in the ice,
hollowed cups for filling.
There is only a soft sucking sound
and memory of a turtle giving eggs
to death, and a dog finding a fish
frozen alive, licking it almost warm.

Ivory Talisman
by Amy Bracken Sparks

Under the scalpel my grandfather holds
his hand straight out. He stares
at the ceiling, for luck strokes
an ivory piece between his fingers.
He told me the elephants wanted to die.
I know that he didn't.

Forty years ago the veldt, crackling
heat, spurred the elephants bellowing
and rumbling across the scrub.
How could they know
their ivory smoothes so cool
to my grandfather's touch?

Feet tied to the sheets
wet with worry and sweat
I am whirling in a fever watching
the wings of a blizzard swoop
and fall the way elephants do
their mad circle dance before
crumbling into heaps.

I lean into the heat
and run to the beasts,
offering back an ivory piece.
Their trunks finger the dust,
shrink from my touch.

Coated with black dust my grandfather
slips among the tusks, looks
at me once and bends
to make the first cut.

by James Weigel, Jr.

Out of my sleeves ten bones protrude --
two Reaper's paws. Fisted,
they gesticulate not to stress words
but point some object, pat
a dog or rake an itch.

Lean prongs like these
will never coax a breast to swell.
They manage barely a fork
and typewriter. A hunt and peck
concern, my fingers forego much else.

Still, these hands work
at a vocation which, by plying
an alternate relax and wrench,
discovers bone-truth.
                                    And past
my small self
these knobby spires point
palm to palm, above.

Two Haiku (7)
by James Weigel, Jr.

His demands on her
were thunderbolts
carried out immediately.

Her demands on him
were spiderwebs
entrapping him for a lifetime.

Two Haiku (9)
by James Weigel, Jr.

He seeks serenity
with his explosive mind
and flesh like a fist.

She seeks excitement
with her vague peaceful mind
and gentle curve of flesh.

The Waitress
by James Weigel, Jr.

Servant to mouth and pelvis,
I weigh men on my scale --
both ends a tedious greed.

They've eaten at me.
Face and flesh swelled, sagged
into middle age.
My salad wilts, too.

Beauty salons have made
Halloween of my hair,
cosmetics thicken,
and everyone orders
from a poisonous menu.

April 1, 1986
12:43 am
by Anna Arnold

At this particular period in my life,
I sometimes feel as if I am in an insane
rest home. Nothing feels quite right.
I sleep alot. I watch alot of tv (espe-
cially the reruns of the Monkees on MTV
and old movies). When I walk out on the
street I feel odd, naked, unsafe, uptight
and nervous. I only like to go out to get
supplies and for an occassional walk arou-
nd the block.

To create or to be able to create mas-
terpieces from this isolated, lonely, un-
balanced environment is a miracle. I sup-
pose my living situation hasn't really
changed all that much except that I am
more aware of it than ever. Does my life
life work?

I also want NEW friends. Groovy, help-
ful, fun, intense, artists, dancers, actors,
singers. Somehow, me, 'Terry' and my NEW
friends are the new wave in entertainment
& somehow we will all meet and encourage
each other. Don't forget fashion & food.
Oh, man, I can't wait! This is gonna be
so much fun. Jeez, just like in the movies.
Those black and white art school, rebel,
poet movies in the 60s. I'll get to live
out my fantasies! Yo-ho-ho yippee!

Can you believe it? Me? A NEW Anna
Arnold? Huh?

The Message
by Daniel Thompson

She calls me
Amid those cries
Of nightmare logic
All things broken
That had promised us
Glass bones wood skin
In case of emergency
Send the message
Past the madness
(o those terrible eyes!)
The hard transparency
Of the heart love breaks
Love enters

One More Graffito
by Daniel Thompson

Pity anyone
Who has to shit in nasty
Filthy Cleveland cockroach dead air
Evil shadow bars yellow dog cell
Meaty graffiti Uncle Sam junkie
Punk funk old mushroom clouded
Soupbone cough coffee
Cold monkey ass sand-
Which is the way it is
City jail where
Taking my eyes off
The contemptible
Unkept floor
I leave the future
Occupant of my cell
One more graffito
May your dirty dreams
Keep you sane

I have cursed
by Davis Alexander Smith

i have cursed
the sun
that burns

for a heavy mind
runs to nothing
that is not there

i shall not
run to a crippled

Me & Joe
by Toni Frabotta Marsh

The art of Fellini
is a suicide
with dangling, burning limbs.

& me & my friend
performed the art of suicide
with smouldering, ink-dripping pens.

Art, we used to say,
eats its young.
Three suicides in fifteen minutes.

Show us.   Prove it,
the dumb say:
blue-faced, crooked-necked, you did.

I always believed you anyway.
Now we can laugh
at the pseudo-black & quasi-facts.

We knew it all along.

The Adventures of Stone Ranger & Snorto
by Stephen Reynolds

What would we do, Snorto, if terrorists ever attacked us?

Me tell Ron Reagan

What good would that do?

He call them plenty bad names, Stone Ranger

But how that make them stop, Snorto?

Not make them stop, Stone Ranger, but help catch them

How would calling terrorists bad names help capture them?

They be ones laughing the loudest.

Dead Frogs
by Dick Head

I only eat dead frogs
When I have to
Life's a bitch, not a bore
I'm a slut, not a whore
Live for lust
Love's a drag
I only eat dead frogs
When I have to
Art is free
But paint costs money
The galleries are full
Of commies, faggots & more
I don't let it get me sore
Cus I only eat dead frogs
When I have to

Number 1 Son
by Pappy Smith

I ain't no artist so I can't paint a

I ain't no poet so no poetry

I ain't no writer so can't write a
story and therefore can't write
anything in this book.


Whethered Would
by Steven B. Smith

Ach, uneasy cockraoch coexistence,
Exilic, yet extant
Contingencies of space and time

Mausoleum, Museum, Movie
by Steven B. Smith

Entombed in night, uneasy
In the wrought iron knots
Of the grey spider's thread
    vague eternal, ember
They scurry replete, unfree
To such preconcieved thoughts
As are hung from the dead

Night Fragments
by Steven B. Smith

As has been said
The night weighs upon the city
In tired, fat insolence.  Rat scurry.
Old papers flap down empty streets.
It is an ugly season.  Full.
Day slouches in in shameless anonymity
Devoid of great chained excuses of being
A voided has-been of god, notion and country.
Unfocused without, we hunt worms within
To bait further cold excretion of reason, rationale.
Refuse refusing our naked nothing.
Strip steal by night.

Cain in Isolation
by Steven B. Smith

There lies a sorrow beneath this yellow
Odor which rises on two legs and mocks
What little man remains behind. Shallow
Selfish greed of love and lover's talk
Of trust in self made shadows mere shadow
Of hallowed spell disguised by holy frock.
Varied the means of divination, certain
Though time and dark demons conspire, despair
By this hand shall never rend the curtain
Nor set wraiths cull delusions of lone fear.
What is, is, beyond lamenting, Canaan
Isolation. Love and love alone stands bare.

by Cat Smith

o when
o where
o what is reality
o which
o why
o who brands insanity
o what can a poor boy do
'cept try and rule the world

Please Discard
by Cat Smith

Every sin has a Name.
Be sure to tell the Name of the sin,
and, if mortal, HOW MANY
TIMES you committed it.
Always confess Mortal sins first,
then any venial sins you may wish
to confess.

A sin is Mortal if all of the fol-
lowing three things are present. If
any one of the three is missing, then
it is no Mortal Sin.
    1. It must be a BIG SIN.
    2. We must KNOW that it is a
        BIG SIN (something serious).
    3. We must REALLY WISH to
        commit the BIG SIN. (If we are
        forced to steal, or to eat meat on Fri-
        days, etc., or if we are violently
        dragged into impurities, there is no

Four Haiku
by Zubal

The garden glosses
over the green reptillian
decaying tree stumps

Looming in the black
night the crow waits with eyes for
silent crawling feet

It grasps the rattle
and shaking it to the sky
the small baby kicks

Ancient man stands on
the mountain, his beard jutting
over the city

right angle reality
by Cat Smith

right angle reality bisecting oblivion

a tear creeps swiftly down her sun bronzed cheek
eternities away in the palm of my quaking hand

                                                'as a knight in heavy metal
                                                skin i rear my trusty steed
                                                into battle with the distance
                                                that squats dragon-like
                                                betwixt us; it bending and
                                                twisting my innocent advances
                                                into sharp swords of sorrow
                                                that hack and slice at your
                                                cerebral contentment causing
                                                sadness to flow like blood
                                                from your wounds'
                                                                                (like the young
hunter who views the mangled corpse of his first kill my heart
is sickened)

Nu Ace
by Desmond Velcro

The earth is such an infinitesimal
Life is like that.

But if he's a
motorist, he soon finds that he does not in
fact find freedom, but a

collision, can be pictured as a

There is a lot of talk today, and there
always has been a lot of talk, about freedom

He didn't go quietly?

I Agree
by Max

I agree Oh yes . . . Of course . . . Undeniably
Love is a very serious matter --
A grave affair indeed;
And one should proceed at once to attain and decorate it
with all the usual trimmings;
Change its name
Lock it with gold
Give it dirty socks and children
To occupy its time.
Oh yes yes
Unquestionably . . . Without a doubt.
IN the meantime
a very Kinky Girl and Scotch
Nearly always

Shultze's Diagnosis
by Max

Pops into Denny awhile our lives
in once every, a back laid playful
twenties late in his guy,
imagine who living i could somewhere
in a homemade guitar
in hills of Kentucky swigging on the porch
of a tarshack jug
occasionally on the whiskey.

by Max

"Next time some fucker fucks with me I'm goin' smack 'im
with my fuckin' pillow. I got that boxin glove in there."

Feed a Fever
by Toni Frabotta Marsh

the body craves food
so you give it fish --
anchovies & mussels
tequila & beer

the body craves sleep
but you won't give it that

the body craves hunger
so you give it frenzy
jitters & nausea
delirium & fear

the body craves sleep
but you won't give it that

the body craves want
so you give it passion
searing pain & desire
fire & shame

the body craves sleep
but you won't give it that

the body craves sleep
but you won't give it that

An Elegy To Unheard Poets And Unseen Art
by George P. Kemp
May 1, 1986: Daniel and Smith

I watched in Parma
A silent tribute
To unheard poets and
Unseen art:

Where the bureaucrates
Raised suppressive hands
To keep out the truth
That pierces rosy dreams ---

And the faceless came
With censorial minds
Unable to bear the rank breath
Of the unfamiliar: unseen art.

So the faceless raised
Suppressive hands to keep
Back the poet vexed
By reasons "Why?"

Mouthing his silent eulogy of protest,
The poet was left standing
Like astronaut from Cleveland
On some strange planet's shore ---

With wild-white beard flowing,
It was he that listened
As the community scrubbed
The shadow of genitals and cross from wailing wall.


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