When my handlers
they pile me
inside the black chevrolet
I may ash
but my money’s
holes in the upholstery.
It’s my broker
who’ll claim what I need to claim for me.
like a mule left out in the rain.
It’s his job to see that my flanks steam.
When I spend him
he oversees how I bay.
Have you ever sang “my love” inside a black chevrolet
“must be a brand”
“a kind of”
(it’s the job of the rain to disfigure
what it can’t wash away)
like my money inside my billfold inside a black chevrolet.
When I ash
it’s like hearing my life pass
inside a key change that’s the scourge of the American music industry.
Or like hearing
but my life’s
cashing my life in at the penny arcade.
Have you ever sang “maybe millions” inside a black chevrolet
“but they all disappear”
It’s the job of
to make sure that he brokers the rain.
It’s the job of the ash in the lanterns down Ashland Place
to make sure that
they light us an entranceway to the sea.
I don’t want my life
(it’s the job of
my life to say)
to knot like the hair of Old Hickory
when it crests
& burns more berserk than the sea.
It’s the job of the keys in a black chevrolet
to change hands from broker to broker.
And mine to ash
& smell life disfigure.
“But I only have eyes”
Danniel Schoonebeek’s first book of poems, American Barricade, was published by YesYes Books in 2014. It was featured as one of the year’s ten standout debuts by Poets & Writers and called “a groundbreaking first book that stands to influence the aesthetic disposition of its author’s generation” by Boston Review. His work has appeared in Poetry, Tin House, Iowa Review, Fence, BOMB, jubilat, The Brooklyn Rail, and elsewhere. He hosts the Hatchet Job reading series and edits the PEN Poetry Series. In 2015, Poor Claudia will release his second book, a travelogue called C’est la guerre.