Skip to main content

Karl .

His mind is black and earthy potting soil.
If you could saw off the top of his skull
let some light in
then you would see it:
smelling of dirt.

If you put your hand inside it
would feel warm
sinking fingers down deep
moist and gritty with the particles of dead life
and fine rock grains
mixed minerals and wholesome organic rot
just waiting in there
ripening .

If you could saw off the top of his skull
let some light in

He tries to do it with the light his doctor gave him
and the pods he places under his tongue
like a gardener.

He opens heavy eyelids to suck in the light
but he cannot keep them down at night
and they let out more than they take.

They burn like kerosene in the dark, flickering and sparking
and ash enriches soil, soft and smooth, a little oily,
ash that settles on your skin when
you’re near him in the night,
that feels silky and dirty
between your

like the itching Ash Wednesday mark
that you cannot bring yourself to rub off.

This is a poem I wrote around seven years ago, about a friend I had met as a teenager, a fellow altar server and Catholic school veteran who was always expected to be the Good and Smart One, who became lost in tragedy and trauma without anyone realizing he needed help until one day all anybody expected of him was madness, homelessness, and addiction.

Reader, I married him. It was the best crazy decision I've ever made. We are celebrating our fifth wedding anniversary this weekend. From the ashes of the good and smart Catholic child rose a man like no other, who is an extraordinary husband and father and eccentric, joyous, adventurous life partner, who burns with light and warmth for his wife and daughter, until death do us part. As they will sing at the Rammstein concert where we'll celebrate our anniversary, "Asche zu Asche und Staub zu Staub."


  1. We've spoken in depth about this poem.

    All's well that ends well.

    Happy anniversary, darling ones.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Ich Liebe Rammstein: Till

UPDATE: After purging his sillies on the side project LINDEMANN and participating in another Rammstein documentary video, Till has begun work on a seventh Rammstein album, estimated to be released in 2017.  Till Lindemann
Till Lindemann is the only living human who could kick Chuck Norris's ass, but he doesn't, because they go on emo hunting trips together. The source of this fact, Urban Dictionary, also provides the following essential details: "Till Lindemann is the anthropomorphic personification of pure masculinity who invented the often-lethal dance move: The Till Hammer..." "He challenges the definition of masculine..." "Every German fertility clinic features a cardboard cutout of Till Lindemann choking a shark with one hand, whilst cradling a kitten in his other, looking directly at the stirrups in the insemination room. To this day they have a 100% success rate."

To the chagrin of most of the band, including Till himself, Rammstein is, …

Ich Liebe Rammstein: Richard

Richard Z. Kruspe
Richard Zven Kruspe is Rammstein's founding father, lead guitarist, and natural frontman. He's gregarious, well-spoken in both German and English, a professional showman, and an enthusiastic promoter for the band. In German, his name is pronounced "REE-kard," and in Germanglish, "Reeshard," or "Reesh" for short. Richard is sexy, and he knows it. To many Rammstein fans, he is the cuuuuuuute one. His Facebook page would have you believe it.

Legend has it that Richard has a lovechild with lead singer Till Lindeman. The myth is based in complicated facts and figures, including one unconventional love triangle. Circa 1990, Richard and Till were in a band together (along with future Rammstein rhythm guitarist Paul Landers) with the cheeky name First Arsch. Till, the drummer, was a single father of a little girl at the time, the issue of a short-lived, youthful shotgun wedding--to Richard's current girlfriend. When "Mrs. Lindem…

The Love Howl of the Wolf Mother

"Don't say 'big, bad,'" my three-year-old daughter Nux Gallica tells me when I read her bedtime stories. "Just say 'the wolf.'" When groups of wolves appear on the page (usually in a sinister context), she makes up individual characteristics for them. "This is the mama wolf, this is the sister, and this is the auntie. And this one is thirsty for a drink of water."

I am proud of Nux's wisdom and grateful that she doesn't buy into stereotypes so easily. Because I, myself, am a Wolf Mother. We Wolf Mothers are deeply fulfilled by parenting and strongly engaged with our children, but our passionate immersion in motherhood has the tendency to isolate us from many people who filled our lives in the years BC (Before Child). So I want to send out a howl of love to all those I treasure from a distance while I lie low in the den of early-years motherhood. 

We Wolf Mothers are deeply instinctual. We are dependent on our mates and packs,…