there’s a ringing in my ears
like the last word you spoke
to me, directly to me, we
looked eye to eye and
were breast to breast
with spring outside, knocking
at the door like a mormon
missionary, coming to bring
the good word but in our case
a new life, starting over, rebirth
these are the words that
come to mind when i reminisce
on those days when we both knew
we weren’t going to see each other

i faintly remember being
on the fourth floor study
and seeing you walk by,
your legs somehow carrying
the heavy weight of your heart
inside your chest, that same chest
i’d seen bare, they carried you
as if nothing was troubling you
and maybe it was nothing
that was troubling you,
but in that room
i remember the time i came back
from hearing that spring
was the suicide season
and yet winter, that winter, was
the season that made me tremble.

in the lobby of a doctor’s office

"the receptionist isn’t here,"

he said,
lying on the wooden couch
with a cheap cushion on it,

"i’ve been here almost an hour
and she’s not here.”

"thanks. i would’ve been standing
there waiting for awhile,”

i said
and suddenly he started
talking more, & i could tell
that he was one of those guys
who never shut up.

"this seating arrangement is shit!
i’ve been waiting on my wife
for almost an hour now!”

he told me,

"i came in here trying to figure out
how to make this couch more
comfortable. i did it at my grandmas
house growing up and i says
to myself ‘i didn’t get an engineering degree for nothin’ and i put
all these pillows on it and look at it now! it’s comfy! and that chair you’re
sitting on is too puffy. you’ll just slide
off of those.”

and suddenly his wife
came out from some back room
and said to him “let’s go,”
and saved my fucking life.

a victory

the moth
with the
throes of

& the spider
held on
for dear

naked poetry


i write poetry naked
and nobody even knows it.

and i feel like my
nakedness is somehow
revealed in my diction

and my madness
in my syntax,

and the fact that i
once loved you
seems to show up

in the lines i break
which don’t need fixed,
in my opinion.


in the fluid
we pushed our fingers

against the wall,
forming tiny ridges;

one of a kind prints
which last forever;

evidence of our
attempts to escape.


In the Rough is a chapbook containing 15 original poems by Doc Marek. Signed hard copies are available at a price of your choosing (PWYW - pay what you want). Click here for more information or to purchase.


In the Rough is a chapbook containing 15 original poems by Doc Marek. Signed hard copies are available at a price of your choosing (PWYW - pay what you want). Click here for more information or to purchase.

(via docmarek)

on liberty drive

when i was living on my own
i’d drink beer all day long,
as much as i wanted,
just like i’d done in college.

i finished a bottle of champagne
& told her, get me another one
of these fucking bottles,
and she took my debit card.

i shot the cork into the parking lot
and hit a car but nobody was awake
except us, lit up like the moon
and the ends of our cigarettes.

and he keeps playing

you were a child, once
& now you’re much younger;
now you shed the seasons
like a coat and put on time
like make-up, paying special
attention to your eyes and
your cheek bones, to your ears
and your nose which never
stop growing, which can never
quite resist gravity’s pull, the same
as the oceans, ebb and flow &
your heart is barely but
a leaf in the wind,
now, a sliver of sunlight
through a morning window,
beating in your chest like a drummer
boy on the front line, taking bullet
after bullet
after bullet
after bullet
to his chest
and his legs
and his arms
and his head
and he twists and he turns
and he keeps playing
that drum,
keeps laying that beat
nice and steady
through all of the chaos
until finally, thank god, finally
he stops, drops dead
and someone drops their rifle
and pulls the sticks from his hands,
picks up his drum
and keeps the battalion
marching forward
toward death,
right next to the flag boy,
forward to uncertainty
because certainly
there’s something at the end
but nobody has a clue
why they’re alive
or why they keep

sometimes it’s hard to tell

i hear two birds fighting or
& sometimes it’s hard
to tell which, even with people
it can be hard to tell,
but the other day
two flies landed on a book
i was reading, and they fucked
quietly and then flew into
a spider web, both of them,
and it made me
want to vomit.

but as i was writing,
i heard the neighbor’s baby
start crying
while they were fighting
about something that
probably didn’t matter
& i knew that they had the
best of both worlds.

for robin

when i heard that
robin williams died
i got drunk and walked
to the beach and got
blisters on my feet.

i watched the sun
set into the ocean,
watched the waves
rush up on to the shore
as the tide was receding.

i watched that old star
go down into the

I can’t believe Robin Williams is dead.

on being an artist

i get asked a lot
of questions
about this & that
writing and

first off,
they don’t know
(even me)

but they all
think they
(even me)

and they all
say rules
will guide you
but they’ll
only bind you
& blind you from
what art really is:

and so
the only thing
you should
really do

tell the truth
and try real hard
not to try too hard
at all

and disregard
everything you
hear people
tell you - all the ways
you could make your
art better
and all the things you
could do to

all the shit
people spew
but can’t bear
to hear,

even this.

i can hear them


as i

in the room
of a hotel
off 196th

the canaries

i’d lay down on my belly
in the grass and the summer sun,
& line up the green dot
at the end of the barrel
with the body of the little
yellow canaries.
i’d hold my breath and squeeze
the trigger;
plumes of yellow feathers
spotted with blood
covered the grass.
the tomcat would lie with me
and pounce the dying birds.
i was young.
we were a team.
but now i’m older
and the tomcat is dead
and i don’t kill,

the poet

i pour my heart out
on these pages,
these pieces of paper
that don’t talk back,
that don’t drink with me,
to these people i don’t know
who feel my heart
in their hands,
tens of thousands of them
who see through my eyes
as if they were their own,
who die with me