Friday, January 4, 2019

Reincarnation Rebutted

Actually, I think my reincarnation hypothesis is incorrect, because if it were true I would slip into another person's awareness if I slipped into a coma.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

The Sun

We behold the sun, aided
only by the sun.  We do not want 
a girl’s soft skin.  We want our own
leather touch.  Having is only an approach 
to wanting, but we all see by the same light,
and discern by the same source.
If you want to find giant squid, follow
the sperm whale.  If you want to learn
the time, look at your shadow.
If you want to find yourself, follow
your tracks through the snow.
By beholding, we fathom feeling.
When the sun sets on the world
we descend into the tire tracks
of another season, which is this world
naked, the way back to an elocution
older than us, the way we pronounce 
sleep when sleep comes, the way we 
answer when called upon.  You and I
are always this way, never telling 

the moment by the clock, relishing
what the moment indicates without
one word for the wise, with only one
wish for fascination.

Thursday, November 22, 2018


Sometimes my private mind goes on parade,
roaming with a crowd of gawkers,
ambling at the back of the world on the wrong
side of time where we gather to float
our lights and colors in smoky fog.  
At the end of the drumming and the dim lights we
find ourselves useless as a string of plastic beads
hung around a dog’s neck.  We discover
our brilliance dancing in bewildered eyes.  Our
longing draws us out of our confetti toward words
we cannot say.  A skilled hand tucks in shirts
and straightens ties.  A common wish engulfs worry
like an amoeba.  Pessimism feeds on us
when we skin our knees, when we blow
our horns and wave at friends fading fast
into the town we have always tried to leave,
the storefronts and houses we come back to
each year without a notion of forgiveness. 

An old woman says this life passes for fondness,
that listlessness is a soft breeze spreading at our
fingertips, tantalizing as wood smoke, comforting us
when it passes over our skin.  A trombone blares
for us when we come together and when we part. 
We are forced to do the math of binary fission
when we leave each other, when we go to work
or when we sleep.  

The inside of my beer bottle
squeezes my tongue.  I am always witnessing
more of myself.  I never know how to behold
the ones I love except to touch them as I pass
them in the night when they flash me with smiles
meant for everyone.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Friday, November 9, 2018

The Way It Is

You and I are driven to the same sin
from the same source in each of us, a thirst
that will live in others after we’re gone.
We are our appetite as it abides
in our bodies.  It locates us.  Your den is adorned
with bottles—the worst wine from the cheapest
year.  I light up a joint on the patio and stare
into the pattern of dirt that my feet left.
I am my right and my left when we dance.
We love the sleepwalking cycles of the sun
enough to call them ours.  Nightfall comes
and a nation goes to bed.  A hen goes to roost,
a dog circles his kennel, stars shine through
the clouds.  Everything has a way about it,
and that way leads home.  You fry
an omelet for me, for part of me.  I wash

it down with a beer.

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Reincarnation and How To Escape Suffering

NOTE: It is possible to temporarily escape from the cycle of reincarnation by being kept in an unconscious state of life support. Since technology will eventually be so advanced that we humans do not have to suffer greatly I would like to be kept in this unconscious state until technology advanced to the point that I would no longer have to endure a life of extreme suffering in a future life (assuming I reincarnated back into this world and not another). Since I am more likely to reincarnate back into this world and not another, and since this is my religion, I feel that I have a right to be kept in a state of suspended animation and not allowed to die until technology reaches this point of advancement. The name of my religion is Susurrus Waking. I would like the state to recognize this right.       —Joel Fry

Friday, October 19, 2018


A cactus sits on my windowsill
beyond my understanding—green, thorny
and simple to see.  Today I am not a victim
of knee-jerk realism.  The sound
of children playing outside helps me hear
my way through sunlight.  Dogs bark
in the distance.  All the light that breaks
through the clouds tethers to the trees
in my upcast eyes.  When I step outside
barefoot there is no one to remember
or know, no concern to match my leisurely 
stroll down the sidewalk.  I am not an object.
I am a pattern of laughter woven into spring
and summer, born of the wind and the passing
song of a car stereo.  Everyone comes
and goes this way, rippling out from a spiny
center.  I bend the limbs of the crepe myrtle,
slipping bark between my fingers.
My neighbors make their regular stops, 

eat dinner, while mountains wear down to sand.