Kevin O'Rourke

Varick (VII)

Fire rushed down the mountain,
scorching everything before it.
Greenery soon followed, new
saplings sprouting in their
former tenants’ foundations.
When I quit smoking, I did so
only because Bloomberg had
raised the tax on cigarettes. 
Goodbye,                            corner store.
Goodbye porno magazines.
Goodbye,                            morning roll with butter.
Goodbye crowded post office.

Varick (VIII)

Hallways fill up with fumes &
bridges with bodies, with bikes &
the undersides of sinks with vermin
& alleyways with snow & pants
with wrinkles &
one’s wallet with emptiness
& tunnels with a growing
gloom & rooftops with the
shouts of the young, and the drunk,
& money money money money
& liquor & money & worry &
mornings so bright you’d have to
be there to believe them, that’s some
sun, whee, sure, for sure, wow.

Heaving, the Air  (I)

Struck, on its side, I imagine an image of the deer laying, its breath coming sharp & hot and making a cerise mist of the air: when your mother saw the deer, as her car passed, slowly, she burst suddenly into tears.






I fall forward and catch myself on my hands; the snow works its way wetly through the holes in my gloves.  I know this chill by the cold wet working its way through the holes in my gloves, and am thankful for the reminder so                     thank






you standing as a statue of you, classical, your dress’s shoulder straps sliding down your shoulders, the deer’s very red blood on the dark snow on the side of the road’s shoulder there, there’s so much ice, many spinning tires, yarns:






as it was only told to me as such I can too be present, my handkerchief at the ready, these inches of ice below my feet someone’s small fire flickering off in the distance which reminds me to, to,         tragedies happen,           fear happens, but also living too, too,

Juane Brilliant


That which is lush, significant, indicative of health and/or wellness; the memory of the pale nurse’s office tucked away at the top of the stairs in the dream about legs hips hands upon open your mouth and say.  Us?  We just came here ‘cause.



Her observation table shiny as it if were waxed daily, its leather the color of flesh which does not often see the sun, creaking with weight below the area of your ass’s sweat & & that eyechart there on the wall going convex by its base, dark plastic occluder hanging on its hook beside in wait, menacing.



I can see I can see I can see I can tell you about my brain forming the words before I even, hardly, realize that I’ve actually said them out loud; a starter’s gun, frozen crouching behind the racetrack’s white lines:



patting reassuringly: hop on up.  Step on down.  Get on over here, boy, don’t be shy, I ain’t gonna.  What does it say about someone if they wake up in the middle of every night straight up soaked with sweat but also without a care in their pretty little?



Now is when I will tell you about things that I miss: scales with sliding weight thingies at their tops; lollipops; video game systems built into cabinets with half-functioning controllers protruding from them like a T-Rex’s stumpy arms; water fountains; fingertips now on my face now on my arms; that warm chill.