snarf the moment

mirror covered corner-to-corner with cocaine

deftly razor-sculpted in a spiderweb shape

designed so each nose could climb a short thread

without disturbing the integrity of the patterned whole

it was halloween, I think, the arachnid

recurrently arising as a symbol of inhuman horror

an eight-legged architect, hairy but untouchable, uncute

who captures, poisons and mummifies hammocked guests

"we're snowed in," squealed a femme capped with cat ears

one of six black cats who circle one another and dart glances

warily wondering which feline would be hottest in heat

forged from fishnet, body sheath, bondage leather, theme and variation

no one really disguised themselves tonite

as slow things, things that barely move, that linger

like sloths, snails, barnacles, or turtles, no

tonite, it's all hunted and hunters, killers and game

the party pace picks up — fueled with artificial fire

fuming at full tilt — all flirt and fizzle and twerk

at midnite, hinges were unbolted from the doors

to pave wide the way for broad-shouldered devils

dance, all those gathered here dance together in one humid ball

to summon spirits, to craft a tale, to carve out a moment

to live something somehow new, wild and storied—

even if they'd been at the very same party last year

hollering hard against the human din and undying silence

holding red cups high— plastic cheering plastic — crinkling

a real crackling riving the raving night air — lunatic fear

to forget oneself but not be forgotten— unsung demimonde diva fossil

evernew bloodflow of eternal youth feeds our everhungry marketbeasts

we feast on our own flesh in mad-eyed maenad confusion, photo chop cheek or cleavage

selfize selfies, gobbling eyes, wondering how much of our bodies can be consumed

into millions of thumbnail portraits littering glittering the electric sky, pixels degrading

so we each step up and stoop over the mirrored altar of the social web

praying to suck up a little wire of heaven-powered powder pounded down to earth

to flood thousands of oozing synapses with a dose of cosmic energy

all becoming one— one explosion— doused in a hundred days of holy solar power

By 7 am or so, as no one really knew, it became clear

that the only thing we'd all made together was a mess of this place

several empty Narcan tubes had rolled under the coffee table

crushed beer cans, a stray dog's leash, a vodka bottle in the bathtub, etc. etc.

and inside all of our blasted godly crowns, a little lost child whines, begs

a plea, a prayer, a pinprick dream desire to dress it all up again next year

to try once more to huff up as much stardust as we can, leap the horizon,

as our little dog laughs, and we pretend we can light up our lives before winter arrives.

The Fourth Day of the Year, Northern Hemisphere

Distant low double moan

moan of a train horn blown

wail-echoing up through canyon walls

brushes my ear impressed upon a pillow

Morning's echo-echo of soft sobbing

sobbing out from my partner's throat

throat alone in the room next door

door on the night before, before today

Pale yellow day light

dayglow in the sheer curtains

dabbing our faces in cool color

at seven in the morning

Cheekbone and nose touch

touch my lover's scapula bones

turning away from low wan glow

burrowed into the low wall of her

Bedclothes heaped in layers

layered against the chill air

musked and mounded like a pile of leaves

earth-scented warming in the sun

Sleeping goose standing at noontime

standing on one black-webbed foot

balanced with beak tucked backwards

under opposite wing blindfolded by feathers

Body smooth as a ceramic vase

smoothed-down ink-dabbed surfaces

patterned in stripes and speckles

shadows caressing a sloping sinuous curve

Lint-grey cumulu-nimbi dense and layered

layered row upon row in crossing sky bands

murmur about storm surges and tide tables and eke

frail winter sunbeams through the slit of a squinting eye

Start of the day — end of the day bleed

bleeding together in thinned-out pigments

all the dull day long short half-light bleak

tingle and trace at the rear of the retina

Never enough to burn

Never enough to brighten

Never enough to bring

forth a blade of grass Spring

DA Denckla is an artist and curator who proudly identifies as a human, jewish, queer, disabled, neurodivergent survivor. INFP-T "Turbulent Mediator". Aquarius Sun – Leo Moon ­– Ares Rising.  DA's work leans into listening to non-human teachers with ecopoetic echo-location, playing with mixed media of text, sound, and image on stage and page.  Founder of @PraxinoscopeX — an artist collective platform presenting live group exhibitions documented in print and audio forms. Works published: Praxinoscope PerformX Docs, Iowa Review; Mudfish, Hot Pink, and Nothing in Particular. DA is a D.C. punk whose music for 80's and 90's bands Carpe Diem, Geek, and Choke will be re-released by Numero Group in 2024.  DA feels lucky to be living with his partner and their many plants in a railroad flat carved from the ground-floor of a Victorian-era hospital in the Echo Park section of Los Angeles, CA.  Some of DA's days are spent teaching creative writing and literature to college students. Occasionally available @da_denckla.