God Is So Gangster (poem)

Behind the big desk in
The big office, one shock of
Lamplight making the dark
Wood desk shine. The carpet
Greenback green. God in
Wedding white suited.

Big men come to the big office
Stand and stutter in front of
The big dark desk, hatless hands
Clutching for something to cover
Their crotches with as they go
Begging. Help me. Help me.

Help me
They say.

God says no.
No. No. The question is:

How can I help you
In a way that helps me?

-M. Ashley

The Bridegroom Cometh (poem)

I don’t even want to be kind to this
Sad man. If my god were to come

For me in the same moment this
Sad man grabs for my hand in the

Parking lot, desperate now the date is
Ending—and my god were to show up

Between the parked cars all masculine in
Twilight purple, head to holy toe, I

Would wrench my hand away from this
Sad man and give myself to god rirght there–

Slut-in-the-parking-lot—while the
Sad man cries and watches me

Fucking my way to apotheosis, spread
Eagle on the hood of a dirty white Prius.

-M. Ashley

God (poem)

There is a guy on my street.
He has an orange muscle car.
He lives in a sky blue house.

He warned me once about mail
Thieves–a couple in a gold junker
Slinking from box to box at
Night, pilfering birthday money.

He is a nice fellow.
He keeps his lawn nice.

He takes his orange muscle car
Out once a week–rolls slow
Down the block. Our windows
Shake. My dog barks.

It’s Sunday.
The whole neighborhood
Knows it’s Sunday.

-M. Ashley

Un-Whole (poem)

It doesn’t have to be good.
It doesn’t have to be whole.

You will never know
What you never knew. Any god

Who tells you he’s honest is
A malicious liar. All gods lie

A little. We are eager for god lies
And lying gods prefer to keep us

Eager and (mostly) un-disappointed.
They tells us that cracks in the vessel

Are natural—Inevitable—beautiful.
They teach us we must appreciate

the cracks. We need the cracks, we
sing. We need the cracks

To let the light in. But why, gods—
and be honest:

Did you make the vessel opaque?

-M. Ashley

Caramel Vodka Cocktail at 3am (poem)

Dreamtime craving for alcohol
when you’re not a drunk
means Bacchus is having a crisis
of consciousness tossing
the nymphs and turning
the maenads out of his bed

thump
thump
thump

they hit the floor and

tap
tap
tap

he comes to your window

because you have your own bed
and won’t sleep with him in it
gravity isn’t a threat then
and he has the whole carpet to himself

because he enjoys thrusting
his head under your box
spring and tying your
mismatched and long-
forgotten shoelaces together.

Also, he thinks you’re fun to drink with
mostly because you don’t much,
don’t have the stuff for proper cocktails,
and while you’re craving his liquor
he’s craving the sexy way
you pour it into a diet root beer
shrug
and drink it all down.

-M. Ashley