Joseph A. Pinto

barflypoet & author of dark fiction

 

susurrus

 

that’s the rub, i hear nothing of you inside this cacophony head. a coward would ask where have you gone but a valiant knight would fall upon his sword. there you go eviscerating my heart before it tastes blade. somewhere in town the 6:30 train gallops without its mount but that was nineteen minutes ago. i’d have paid attention had i not been stemming the blood from my chest. i stink of charred sausage from a nearby grill while licking the remnants of a healthier diet from my fingertips. luckily cheap booze cauterizes all wounds but turns the stomach inside out. you’re down my shirt and in my mind and only one washes easier than the other. my neighbors enjoy the music i play when i’m outside but not the sounds i retch. it’s easier to apologize than tell them i’m waiting upon a voice from the dead. is there anyone aboard that train missing their station, poised to celebrate the whoosh of fresh air? i’m asked if i need food while politely stumbling away, declining my neighbor’s suggestion i might need more than the vacant stare upon which i fill myself while drinking on my patio.

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© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms

 

feast

 

the plates have more space at the table now, the bellies more food to be fed. take the extra chair back to the basement. i filled it with air anyhow. my absence will be spoken of now until christmas but i gave the early gift of self back and the easy truth is i love me more than you. this hurt has been aging unlike the depth of wine you drink. you skimped the wallet while i nurtured the vine and now that i’ve grown to season i’ll never allow you to take my vintage away. you’ve the cushion of elbow room but i’ve the expansion to grow. i’m grateful for every one of you, don’t take this the wrong way, no matter how truthful the anger sounds. but when the beacon beckons one must go. the soul has transitioned and it’s only a matter of time until my body finds home. slather the white meat with gravy so it won’t stick in your throat. this thanksgiving alone i’ll swallow the clear of my booze with ease.

 

listen to this poem

 

#barflypoet

#josephapinto

© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms

 

legerdemain

 

slowly circling, slowly circling, tongue flicking out, flicking in, fringes of my cheek an old tasseled rug and syllables whistling through it like kettle steam, don’t leave, don’t leave us, air rushes from the hole through which you hooked me, i am hushed, our vision kept close to vest, blush of our promise fled your breast, what’s left, fast-fingered my heart your palm to next, i am left guessing an illusionary conjuring before my eyes while faith gathers necessary branches to withstand another long night alone inside my ribs.

 

listen to this poem

 

#barflypoet

#josephapinto

© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms

 

iridescent

 

before your eyes, i share nothing, hint nor glimmer, merely a manipulation, a twisted play of your own perception. believe me weak? i am weak. think me raw? i’ll soak your laces in all i spill. strike the chords your ears will hear. pluck the strings your core responds. understand i have gamed you on a lustrous level, blinded you to such point into the seat of my palm unawares. crush you? such as i choose. cup your own luminous? surely, if only i’d not evolved in darkness.

 

listen to this poem

 

#barflypoet

#josephapinto

© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms

 

sewer

 

again it is taxed by the latest deluge. this whirlpool of muck and debris and oppression has spun downhill for years. my throat iron oxide like the grill created to hold it back. hold it back, hold it back (please hold it back). it’s those sliver words and dismissive exasperations that find their way through the rungs. surely it will pass. the storm always does. still the oily residue of expiratory pledges grows fiercer to scrub from the nubs. full of flippancy you let fall from your fingertips, there comes an awful gurgle from the center of my core. choked of all you no longer find useful, my limitations rise against myself and once more i am full up in your shit. your laughter like a skipping sun from behind clouds. the leaves a lazy drip atop street. it’s all over now but no matter how you distance yourself, your stench is always one with my skin.

 

listen to this poem

 

#barflypoet

#josephapinto

© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms

 

countertop

 

dark surfaces don’t reveal the mess. her own words, crumbled in their staleness and left again to redirect my demeanor. i mean, can you believe her? the unfortunate answer yes. roiled within thunder, there has always been someone to rob the fork from my tongue. lashless and listless, anger withdraws and i stand like a beach with no tide. her lips churn about a better season but the seashell to my head echoes lie.

 

so take the spray and wipe it.

 

and i do with clear eyes hiding a dirty handprint pressed upon the cloth.

 

listen to this poem

 

#barflypoet

#josephapinto

© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms

 

 

luncheonette

 

above and behind, an angel welcomes me in a cheap tinny din. am i dead, dying or somewhere between, like the sugar crusted counter before me and the residue of your sweet in my heart. my lungs sizzle with bacon fat and it’s a good thing because i’ve not much left of you to breathe in anymore. there’s a red stool and red nails carry a red-rimmed mug away and in my head i count the times the ghost of those lips grimaced when cooling the lie. who am i and where have you gone and why are the napkin cocooned knives so blunt? eventually shuffling forward, i take fate into shaking hands. your last gasp comes not accompanied with a movie reel of your greatest hits but atop a menu keen on choking the life force from your veins. this, the hell surely i earned but the impalpable angel once again clears its miserly throat and two old souls part the veil, fingers entwined. measuring my own, i realize sluggishly you still mar my gnarled emptiness. taught over and over breakfast is the most important meal of the day, i’ve lived famished on a diet of hope and silent ringtones and your wide eyes like the broken yolks of sunny-side up eggs but you’ve always hated eggs and it’s always killed me you’ve been so broken but i’ll love you like my last cup of coffee and you’ll stain my teeth twice as bad.

 

listen to this poem

 

#barflypoet

#josephapinto

© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms

 

sirenize

 

a sea, a sea of freckles and it is between them i wish to trace your mythology through my tongue, to bring forth your sparkle the way you cast out all my dark. fingers dabbling in the wet i leave behind and if you and i have a name by then we’ll reimagine ourselves a thousand times. unhurried revolutions i will part your sphere of flesh and take you to a depth of essence you never thought you’d find. be mine. i want to gaze upon you nightly and know something in this great expanse makes sense and is all for me.

 

listen to this poem

 

#barflypoet

#josephapinto

© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms

 

apple

 

what does your sleeve feel like? i imagine it must be so warm. autumn flashes her teeth and you hide your arms under layers, so when i bare my vulnerabilities why do you not take the same care? wine tasting like all couples do this time of year except i’m five fingers short of holding your hand. you’re fawning over nuances lathering your tongue and i’ve got jesus christ and blood in my mouth and neither blesses me save the sunglasses secreting my eyes and a checklist of varietals into which we feign our interest as we have done nearly every day spent together. laugh it off, it’s okay, we’ll wash our hands the way we rinse our throats of grapes but i fear we are thinner than those cups keeping sparse water and my pant legs are still damp from eight seasons ago (when i started counting). within me there is a flesh so ripe and tender that you’ve allowed to sit atop the counter until the worm got to its core. i see only my face at the bottom of this glass, not your eyes i am void of or that fuzzy sweater i wish you’d rub me across to remind me i still shine.

 

listen to this poem

 

#barflypoet

#josephapinto

© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms

 

steak

 

i take it, masticate between jaws until temples throb and consternation leaks between teeth, and still the nerve of you there, hard like rock that knows no footfall, memory woken to you but gone the way smoke from flame, chew and chew and chew while throat beseeches relief from the fire valley, and something dies in order to serve so you char the guilt and fat and all semblance of sense from the rebuttals resting on the block, and my mouth should water but my eyes cry over excessive vowels and grill time. a napkin waits not so far away as i nod compliantly, desiring to discard you into linen bowels, but i’m full of sinew and leather and the thought you can kill anything that moves.

 

listen to this poem

 

#barflypoet

#josephapinto

© Copyright Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

 

From My Front Steps,’ ‘Scotch and Scars’ and ‘A Distilled Spirit’ in paperback and Kindle ebook at Amazon.

subscribe to the audio barflypoet YouTube channel https://tinyurl.com/y2stm5ms