Turncoat Appliances

by c nolan deweese

Once the beer spilled, filling the countertop
swamp ocean around our electrical helpers
(aircraft carriers of convenience and shine,
tombstones for dead inventors and robber barons,
halfway houses to a robot future come permanent residences).

Twice now, strange gasps from the coffee maker
staggering from the toaster, a chrome pirate limp
(some mad scientist chip deep within starting to activate,
triggered by time or alcohol, deadly whispers),
the secret society of change every setting to puree.

You have to be careful when talking of three
(controls the world with pyramid schemes).
Third day is always where change comes in fairy tales.
Trident of mutiny, refusal to function to my whims:
nothing in this goddamn kitchen works anymore.

The Bike Ride


Love begins as theory, like capitalism.
Hippies may represent the best aspects of love.

I rode my bike (I donít have a bike)
to a little bar in Kipton with a Pabst sign on the window.

I knew she must be a bad speller,
her goggles seeing only the rain Ohio cared to show.

We came to on the bike path
where everything looks the same, where the trees shrug.

And I may be 21 years old
(perhaps not be the best speller in the world)

but I can read the sentences written by trees and rain.
The faces in a crowd of people may scare me

but I will look up at the trees
and they will shrug, and I will smile, shine.


Iím waiting in Ohio like a convict.
This path is my safari; this path is the quicksand.

We fell asleep on the bike path,
trees holding up all those precious stars above.

We fell asleep like superstars
on the cigarette ash floor of a marginal hotel.

Hope knocks on the door
like room service, like a hit man, like the cops.

I had a bike but no lock.
Still, the past tense hurts, like most theories.

How can I be 21 and feel old?
The words come fast; I have to, I must, I will change.

©2002 by c nolan deweese

c. nolan deweese is 22 years old, and graduated in 2001 from Oberlin College with a degree in creative writing. His first book was called Cowboy Atlas, and was published in 2000. His new book, His Buck Passed, His Gulch Robbed, His Horn Tooted and Done, from which these poems are taken, is looking for a publisher. In August he will move from Philadelphia to his home town, Port Townsend, Washington.

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