Honestly, I'm a Liar, & Other Balances & Imbalances

May 24, 2016

surrendering you senseless

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , , — namelessneed @ 12:13 pm

Schlafwagen und Wunderkammer (Richard James Allen)

Posted on May 24, 2016 by in Heightened Talk

FullSizeRender(‘Schlafwagen und Wunderkammer’ is German for ‘sleeper’
or ‘sleeping car’ and
 ‘cabinet of curiosities’ or ‘wonder room’)

you are on the night train to Vienna
and you have already arrived in Berlin
you are about to walk home in Sydney
and you must dash back out to see
the play that is now more popular
than Hamlet in London

you are cold in your high sleeper bed
that you collapsed into
when the night heat came on
suddenly in a rush
without getting under the covers
that are now cold
that you collapsed into

you are wrapped in an old overcoat
you don’t remember owning
dreaming of trying to stay warm
in a high-raked hall of a tall-walled university
listening to a lecture on the mechanics of flashback
and your mind keeps wandering to a back shed
somewhere beyond the Wall in East Germany
full of homemade contraptions that were far too unreconstructed
ever to be sent to a Dickensian-looking patent office
piled high with yellowing documents
that curl like nineteenth century moustaches

you are in the long tail of a tall tale
a cat coiled up in itself asleep
the way those big ropes
that secure ships to their ports
are coiled into perfect circles
by nameless foreign seamen
the forever migrant workers
circling the globe
only one of whom
ever gets off the boat
to become Joseph Conrad

you are being asked by your roommate
your bunkmate your companion
what do you call someone
travelling with you on a night train
in one of the lower bunks
a person who for reasons unknown
shall remain nameless
to set an alarm so that she yes she
that much you can know
can wake up before the guard
who has no English comes with the croissants

you are sure you are reassuring her that you have
and it may be that you have
but you don’t remember in which country
or time zone you would have have-have-have done so
though you like the idea
that this act of thoughtfulness
may have occurred
and you being the enactor
if not the instigator of it

you are thinking that you may have to be the alarm clock yourself
though your clock hands are wrapped inside your imaginary overcoat
and not a lot about the rest of you resembles a device
for the capture and distribution of time

you are of the opinion that when you fell into this  sleep  in  a  cocoon  of  vibration  you
were  sure  or  at  least fairly certain that  it  would be a normal sleep that  is  to say just
like any other sleep but on the contrary  it  feels  as  if  you have been having the whole
history  of  consciousness downloaded into the data banks  of  your  body  which for an
unspecified period  of  time have replaced your usual cells but this  is  most odd as you
are  not  sure  if  you  believe  any more that consciousness  has  a  history  though  you
might  go  so far  as  to  offer  that it gets woven in to history finally realising that it was
only ever  a  visitor  to  the aforesaid state  of  you are not sure what really playing hide
and seek  in  the winding corridors and hallways of time and personality a game  it  got
caught up in but now understands it can step away from any time it wishes to exit
time that is to say whenever it no longer wishes to be part of
the here and the now
and the then and the to come

Knock, knock, knock!

so the question the guard asks you
in English by the way
is not would you care for some breakfast
but are you ready to be awoken from this dream of timelessness
or would you prefer to remain in a room of marvels
a disembodied spectacular down the rabbit hole of the fantasia elevator
taking up semipermanent residence in the cross-eyed manifesto
of time masterpieces of continuous previousness
a conspiracy of angels flocking in all directions at the holy speed of intuition
as you learn to live in the fantastic space



smaller-cropped-Richard-James-Allen-portrait-by-Saba-Vasefi-Copyright-©-2016-The-Physical-TV-CompanyRichard James Allen’s ten books of poetry, fiction and performance texts include Fixing the Broken Nightingale(Flying Island Books), The Kamikaze Mind(Brandl & Schlesinger) and Thursday’s Fictions (Five Islands Press), shortlisted for the Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry.  He won the Chancellor’s Award for most outstanding PhD thesis at UTS.  Widely published in anthologies, journals and online for over thirty years, Allen has been the recipient of numerous awards, nominations, grants, as well as opportunities for presentations, screenings and broadcasts, in a unique international career as an acclaimed writer, director, choreographer and performer. Further information: http://ww.physicaltv.com.au & http://www.poetrylibrary.edu.au/poets/allen-richard-james.

January 21, 2015

Flash Session

All Paul Simon sang  he

Via telephone headphones  to me

“..half of the time  you’re gone..

but you don’t know where

you don’t know where.”

i  wept  at  work.


Yet i got Simic  in his lunch sack/

I got Irish for when i get home

For salve & for saving him/

More, I have a mate giving me gladness

Across  the  state

I love indirectly  like madness

November 22, 2014

fleeting thing

I would probably  be able to say,

I  could pray  for  love.


“mistakes  got  made.”

That just was spokespeople, just was scripted to say

At press conferences/  when the best of the last vestiges

of subterfuge/  just clears away

Just  faster than the disaster will



if only i will…

if only i was able…

October 31, 2014


This  season

The storms  staid off

Or didn’t  set in

I needn’t pack  sand bags

Nature spared me  the necessity

To save myself from flood


October 20, 2014


What were they thinking

I’m not to leave town

I’m a faceted test pattern blinking

Personas of interest renown

Only to the powers that be


Ok I get cagey occasionally

Ok yet I remain w/the reminder

Of stoic stands that been

Lost, inconsequential,

Cost monumental to just a man

seattle 2014 065


April 19, 2014


Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , — namelessneed @ 9:42 am


Gethsemane, by Mary Oliver

The grass never sleeps.
Or the roses.
Nor does the lily have a secret eye that shuts until morning.
Jesus said, wait with me. But the disciples slept.
The cricket has such splendid fringe on its feet,
and it sings, have you noticed, with its whole body,
and heaven knows if it ever sleeps.
Jesus said, wait with me. And maybe the stars did, maybe the wind wound itself into a silver tree, and didn’t move, maybe
the lake far away, where once he walked as on a
blue pavement,
lay still and waited, wild awake.
Oh the dear bodies, slumped and eye-shut, that could not
keep that vigil, how they must have wept,
so utterly human, knowing this too
must be a part of the story.

Blackened breezes rustled/ all

Sacred/ olive trees, skies muscles thick.

I was seeing/ a sight

More than seasick.

I see him, knees bloodied,

Face drawn/ down

to earth.

I was being/ once/

Just a man also.

I spied/ by my back down

To my murk/

I cried/ by my own shadow,

But did not cry out,

To interrupt  all that  too intimate.


When I was a young/ more willful man,

I fasted/ from dawn friday

Until the last of easter/ Today

I’m past that/ I take  the families

To the best italian place,

For sacrificial lamb & blood red wine

& all before that, maybe grace.




April 17, 2014


There ought better be a beacon
on a pacific coast cliff could be
where hope’s light works with a sea horn
where a night light works with a warning
forces & forges the blackest fog & forests

There can be a candle
in a window with enough heat
to fire the hearth
to light one lone solitary stone room
(from 2010)
.”Writing is nothing more than a guided dream” -Jorge Luis Borges

April 4, 2014





pray, tell

There’s but one pretty way to spell out

                                  my long sentence.

If random luck holds out   perhaps

The power, like lightening  stabs

                                  down my stance,

I’ll light up  Dark dancing static

X Rayed,  & loony like on a cartoon.

Man, I’ll be lit up like a mantle

                                      in a lantern soon.

Windfall clarity

should  scare me then.

If I should flinch when I  have,  by chance

One unscrambled avalanche,

Doled out sure/steady

As an hour old Soulful  pillow  rain

It  means

I’ll miss  all this  when

The  words  come,

Spilling these spaces.&

I  can’t  be..

I ain’t nervous of naked undersurfaces


August 15, 2012



In the upper peninsula of Michigan
blustery State Road 2 you must go.
It’s quite common to drive over
deep blood in snow/ dead buck or  doe./
Just as felines must fall & fill gutters
South of there, all over./
deep blood in the snow./
With the people of upper Michigan
it’s quite common  they’ll drag & drape over
& tie up their meat
off the back of their battered trucks
and freight it home to their freezers
for later./

Here in Southwest Florida
on the way to work
it’s uncommon…
(I called out  “Oh My God!”)
it’s uncommon to drive over…
(I killed  an alligator)
I was light on sleep and late for work/
All in a dream’s dread,  in my headlights,
I called out  “Oh my God!”

Still, Later, When I left working, dark and yet dawning
(I had  left It for the taking.  &  It was gone.)
Still were spilled  shadows. most  it was gone.

Lost. home, what would save me?
milk cream & alcohol
Nor Down on my knees
under some Art on a wall;
Oils had spilled on an
empty space clean/
I know this all is from All.
(I called in “oh my god”)

stains for a dream






(from 3 yrs ago, true story)

August 4, 2012





Spaulding Gray,   RIP


Met, when he approached me, introduced himself and invited me to join him onstage for a performance, seriously


Barry Sobel


met in an odd situation, introduced him to my brother


Richard Thompson


met  twice for a backstage meet & greet

a hero



now, it’s yr turn. Do Tell

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