Tuesday, October 25, 2011

OpenLinkNight: (I'm) Too sexy for this shirt


I have the T-shirt, cause I been there,
done that and wear them daily until
my closet, full, floor to ceiling, spills
out to fill this life, space I would rather
hide behind a slogan, to hold your attention
and keep me busy, not to notice the empti-
ness, of this empty nest tucked tween my limbs
now seen in falling leaves, falling, I'm falling,
FA
L
.L
i
.n
g

Down Alice's hole, where the rabid rabbits
with pocket watches burrow
& multiply, multiply, multiply unmercifully
munch-ing carrots
in earthen dens, houkah, houkah, have tea
with me please, tweedle-me-do, tweedle-be-
dumb, my head's off and the Queen of Hearts
has no need to scoff or send her knights to chase me round
the checkerboard and the cheshire cat just grins
as I eat this, drink that, not
wanting to miss a single
experience


&yet


&yet


I'm left with a lot of sodding laundry,
at the end of the day when the three ring circus
goes back in box, and no line to hang
it on. What use is this

life built of T-shirts?

Is it
really sexy, so thin the wind blade slips the rib cage,
and lays me
akimbo, chalk lined out, among the
crowd,


alone.

naked,
now i run.

OpenLinkNight @ dVerse Poets - Time to write some poetry and come join the party. We open the doors at 3 pm EST.

115 comments:

Josh Hoyt said...

Wow! I really like how you have incorporated many popular stories thoughts songs all into one amazing mind blowing idea. Food for thought. I always leave your blog thinking and wondering thanks.

Anyes said...

the laundry song, we all sing it :-)

Everyday Goddess said...

hiding behind slogans, pretending to unite with a cause, only to fall with the first puff of controversy.

powerful.

Margaret said...

...this is where a wife comes in and turns them to rags... :)

Pat Hatt said...

"I visited WaystationOne and All I Got Was This Stinkin Shirt"..hahaha

The laundry does pile
Those rabbits can also be quite vile
I guess they don't want you to wash away their home
They like their dirty clothes dome
Many do seem to hide behind such a thing
But most pants don't have as many slogans, so no need to run naked as you sing..haha

Daydreamertoo said...

LOL Laughing at the witty comments..
Our whole lives shown in a few words on a T-shirt... Been there, done that...
Love your mind and the way it takes such a oft times very quirky look at life and its quirks!

Brian Miller said...

perhaps pat i will pick up a few of the fallen leaves before they decay, harken back to the garden before public display of nudity was outlawed....i dunno, your pants can say a lot about you...i am sure my jeans could tell a tail or two, i am in shorts today though so dont fear my incarceration....

Monkey Man said...

No slogan t's. Same reason I don't put stickers on my bumper. I prefer conversation to statement.

JeannetteLS said...

I liked this. A lot. BUT, now I'm singing "One pill makes you larger, and one pill makes you small... etc." thanks. Thanks a LOT.

At least I DO know all the words and used to sing it... in public... when under the influence.

But I digress. The poetry riff was marvelous. Dang, you sure can write, my friend.

chromapoesy.com said...

I took this more metaphorically - the workaday fantasies that pile up in the closet while the real calling of our life waits. The ego winning out over engaged living. What else would be broadcast on t-shirts, a flimsy announcement at that? Great writing as always.

California Girl said...

What JeanetteLS said.

LadyCat said...

Love the falling...down the rabbit hole. Always seemed like a fun place to be.
I think the slogans a person wears on their t-shirts tend to say a lot about them. Instead of wearing their heart on your sleeve, they wear their opinions on their chest.

Magpie said...

You spun a lot into this one, Brian.

Heaven said...

life built on t-shirts - that would be sad indeed. i like to think that we pile a lot of stuff in our closets, unthinking, with greed driving us to buy more and more. yet, we are always unsatisfied; bare, we forget how to walk, and even run ~

Belinda said...

Ooooh, slogans on tee shirts. Yup. They work well for rallys (such as one I'm going to today to ask Obama to stop the Keystone XL pipeline) but overall, we need to learn to shed the tees in order to hear one another.

ipenka said...

I caught some of the references but I think most of them went over my head.

There are a few tattered, beat up, over 10 years and still can't throw them away T-shirts in my closet. Good times.

Heather Grace Stewart said...

Oh, wow Brian! This is so powerful. There is so much depth to this poem. I could read it 100 times. I probably will.
I love reading your work so much.
Thanks for sharing it with us.
Heather

Eva Gallant said...

I often leave your blog wondering...

Daniel said...

The picture is very interesting and sets a melancholy mood that your words flow into. I wonder how I would have perceived this with a different picture. Good work.

Tara Miller said...

The small word "alone" I felt was the largest piece in your poem today. Your words felt very fast paced and read as if this person was spinning with busyness and intermingling with people yet - alone and empty. Hiding on purpose or spinning out of control and screaming on the inside - but. no. one. hears. ?

Shawna said...

Um, WOW.

"so thin the wind blade slips the rib cage,and lays me akimbo, chalk lined out"

love this part, big time: "munch-ing carrots in earthen dens, houkah, houkah, have tea with me please, tweedle-me-do, tweedle-be-dumb"

You totally rock.And for the record, I love the cheshire cat.

Claudia said...

sad true how much we do to silence the emptiness, acting weird in a way just to get the attention of an audience we hope make us feel less lonely and fall deep, reminds me of some reality shows where you see the extreme but think we all have to be careful not to fall into this hole and here's the confession...i never liked alice in wonderland...great message here bri - conveyed in a most brilliant way

Ed Pilolla said...

i really enjoyed the flavor of insanity in this, at least that was my feeling:) wonderful how you weaved the trails to run parallel in this one. i am running with you. but there is no shirt i am too sexy for:)

Anthony Desmond said...

great metaphors brian... life really is built outta T-shirt slogans so it seems..

Fred said...

Oh, I love this piece. I hate doing laundry. Not anymore though, seeing I'm back home:) When on the road I used to hate wasting my free days, so instead of doing the laundry I'd stop at walmart and buy more-lol Love the ending here, awesome job Brian

hedgewitch said...

Very immediate, and just that little touch of madness to make the poetic dough rise a bit higher. Strong finish makes this one for me, brian.

Sub-Radar-Mike said...

That falling formatting is awesome.

Louise said...

This almost felt like a 'free write' in that your words just flowed...just great. I loved the Alice in Wonderland ref...I was laughing at the rabbits 'multiply unmercifully munch-ing carrots' & then stopped at the ' so thin the wind blade slips the rib cage' bit...great writing

mrs mediocrity said...

the costumes we wear to present ourselves to the world.
loved everything about this one, the twisted alice in wonderland world, almost i want to visit, but then again, i have enough laundry...
great piece.

Randy Behavior said...

I'm not gonna pretend to understand everything that is hidden in this poem. I'm sure there is lots of hidden meanings that you alone understand just as Carroll probably had his. Thanks for taking me along on this little trip through your mind!

Kodjo Deynoo. said...

As usual you take a subject and you run wild with it, like it's no bodies business, so well done

theborgpoet said...

Well now, that was fun. As a collector of these very shirts...:)

wolfsrosebud said...

if only people talked as much as T's do... perhaps there would be more healthy relationships

Mijayami said...

This is very powerful, even though I'm sure I missed a lot of references.
"and keep me busy, not to notice the emptiness" followed by all the falling, really resonated with me.

Steve E said...

The words on my tee had better be good, because nothing else I have will make it stand out!

Brian...again...well. What's to say? I like it? That's like saying I like HERSHEY BARS.
PEACE!

happygirl said...

This was chock full of... more than I could figure out. My son won't wear any t-shirt with advertising. He says "they won't pay, so I won't wear it." I LOVE old rock concert t-shirts.
LOVE Alice Hate Laundry And I certainly don't want to be the chalk outline.

Ruthiey said...

This is a really good one! We spend a lot of time running around trying to make everyone think we're something that maybe we're not.

Serving Hugs on a Platter and Tears in a Teacup said...

Love the ending....

Is it
really sexy, so thin the wind blade slips the rib cage,
and lays me
akimbo, chalk lined out, among the
crowd,


alone.

naked,
now i run.

LOVE IT!

Alaurilee

Adura Ojo said...

Interesting analogy between fiddling rabbit holes and the art of doing laundry. Probably a lot of layers here, both known and unknown to us readers. Intriguing, Brian.

Emily said...

Great one! Loved the breathlessness of this.

I suddenly want to knit you a sweater...

Jill from Killeny Glen said...

A very lonely person yes? SO MUCH appearing to go on yet so alone...

Little Ms Blogger said...

you really have a lot of layers going on with this piece. washing t-shirts has me remember a lot of places I've visited b/c that's what I collect when I travel. for me, washing t-shirts is more than just washing t-shirts.

Slamdunk said...

My fav t-shirts always seem to disappear. The Mrs. refers to them as collateral damage in our stylistic differences.

Lady Nyo said...

Brian...Woof!

I started thinking of this poem one way, with the falling leaves, and then you hit up Alice In Wonkersland, and wow...

I think this so many layers I have to go back and read it again and again....

But as always...your voice is powerful as your message.

Bravo!

Lady Nyo

Sue said...

We could all do with a little more nakedness. But those t-shirts are so darned comfortable.

=)

blueviolet said...

I think they're really funny, but I don't have too many of them.

ayala said...

so much to say and no one to say it to? alone...cool write.

The Linnet said...

This poem has a powerful ending, following such a great romp... I really like this :-)

Patricia said...

I dunno... sometimes I think you perfectly capture what my life felt like when my children were preschoolers and all in the house.
You always make me smile... I'm sending a hug.

Karen from Mentor said...

Love this so much that I'll forgive you the earworm.

the falling falling was music in and of itself.

adeeyoyo said...

Love it, Brian. You have such a brilliant playful way with words. Alice and the rabbits procreating merrily, and the tweedle-me-do, tweedle-be-dumb had me in stitches!
Laundry can wait for another day, that's for sure and where it all comes from is anybody's guess. Lots of hidden meanings I bet.

Shaista said...

What I am trying to imagine is how you wrote this.. I mean, were you wandering about, words tripping you till you got them down, or, did you freeflow at the desk... but then, I guess, those are the poet's secrets...

somewhereamelody said...

So many metaphors within metaphors here.
So many "layers".

...and then the laundry pile, yes, always the laundry pile :)

Kat_RN said...

Ok, maybe its just not my thing. I liked the start and the ending, but the bit in the middle... Not so much.
Don't worry, I like Hendrix best when he stays on track so
I'm not much of a critic.
Sorry,
Kat

johnallenrichter said...

This is definitely a journey! I'd say it's certainly not a normal wash-day at the Miller House! The trip to wonderland was just unexpected and totally awesome... It's not easy to capture the essence of that insane underground but you did it so effortlessly.... Bravo!

Mystic_Mom said...

As usual a smile, a laugh, a bit of a shake of the head and I leave thinking of a few lines...over and over again!

liv2write2day said...

I love all the references in this one, Brian, although--for whatever reason--Alice in Wonderland traumatized me as a child. As did clowns. I'm sure a therapist would have fun with that. My hubby has the tee shirt thing going too and God help me if I toss one that doesn't have any armpits.

Brian Miller said...

actually i think if i wrapped all of your comments poetically it would become my poem...it is an attempt to capture some relational hardship now a part of my past and the feelings in that moment...if i could sum it up in two words they would be 'crowded loneliness'

Kate Hanley said...

Amazing!

Nikki Rules said...

I want a The Cure t-shirt. Sudden inexplicable urge, and since you mentioned t-shirts I thought I'd share my desire.

Timoteo said...

Great stuff! My favorite T-shirt of mine reads: MY MOMMY SAY I'M SPECIAL!

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

Another (apparently) wild write rom your pen, but I look closer and see there's a lot of crafting. It was fun ... and then at the end, deeply serious — and then comes the (reader's) realisation that the seriousness was there all along.

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

*from your pen

Natasha Head said...

The title made me smile, the picture made me sad, and the write has me laughing and crying at the same time! Helllllooooo...we we're going full on positive! Did you not get the memo! Your witty writing doesn't quite cover up the sadness...and I will die in my one remaining PussHead t-shirt from Metallica's golden era! Not gonna catch me running naked anywhere!

manicddaily said...

I loved how this changed pace, going down the rabbit hole and out again--into perhaps a black hole. Very interesting.

David Allen said...

Loved it. Tee shirts can say so much, and leave so much to the imagination. I spent 17 years in Japan and loved the screwy English (called Japlish) on the Tee shirts there. Even wrote a feature story for my newspaper titled "Zen and the Art of the Japanese T-Shirt." Your poem brought that all back for me. Thanks!

Betsy said...

Oh I love this...lonely in crowd and spinning out of control.

I'm leaving with "I'm too sexy for my shirt..." stuck in my head. Wow..it's been ages. Still a very fun song to sing...lol....

marousia said...

Masterful writing

lynne said...

oh why did this leave me dizzy and a tad bit blue...gonna have to re-read until it resonates....

you are such a creative writer..

secret agent woman said...

Yeah, Go Ask Alice is stuck in my head now, too.

MMm.. said...

Wow, really drawn to that so thin comment. so well written, as always dear Brian.

Who Is Afraid Of Miss Lovett? No, Mrs.Lovett... said...

"I'm left with a lot of sodding laundry,at the end of the day when the three ring circus goes back in box, and no line to hang it on. What use is this life built of T-shirts?"
Hi! Brian...
That is a great question that you ask Of your readers.
What a very well-written poem that causes me to reflect on some family members, who purchase buttons and matching T-shirts in order to show their unity behind Native Americans,causes but to make a

long-story short:
They soon discovered that Native-American needed stoves, food, clothing, etc,etc,etc...and not their grand-standing in a T-Shirt...Oh! yeah, with matching buttons. lol

Thanks, for sharing your poetic words and I like your use Of the words..."falling" and yet...
deedee :-/

Ginny Brannan said...

This starts with a closet full of tee shirts and ends with being thin, chalk lined out among a crowd. Perhaps just me reading more into this than just a laundry story. Works on other levels too-descent into madness, or drug-induced fantasies, and junkie's thinness. Or maybe really is about t-shirts. Quite an interesting read, especially pulling in the Wonderland theme!

Joseph Hesch said...

What is it that so many wear the thoughts, ideas, identities of someone (or worse, something) upon their hearts with some feeling of independence? There's something backward about that, Brian.

While it may not sync with what your intent was, or what other folks took away from this piece, it's a thought that resonated with me from the top--all those shirts, those advertisements for not-me-ness, but belonging or being a part of something we thought was.

Ann LeFlore said...

This is amazing and you have me thinking of Alice and how you can grow or shrink by what you eat. I almost feel like a puffy sheet that you throw in on the dryer cycle. What an amazing poem and love the way you have incorporated all these songs into this piece
http://gatelesspassage.com/2011/10/25/the-groom-of-the-dead-bride/

Sophia said...

Too sexy for....NICE! What a BRILLIANT write, Brian. That's it, I'm never writing again. haha :) JUST kidding.

Well wishes to you and your family.

yellowhousecafe said...

right said brian..
dang, now I've got that stupid song in my head (smiling loud)... apt write, too many 'fashion statements' in the name of consumerism with the message so lost...gotta love excess, tis the AM Ex -perience way ~

"wind blade splits the rib
cage"

wish I had wrote that one, fab!

Quotes,Photos and a little Poetry said...

This poem really can makes me question, are some the questions I want answered worth it asking. are they in vain mostly? I really like this poem.

Margie said...

Long time since I've been here Brian.
Great writing!
I enjoyed it!

Margie :)

lori said...

Such a twisted tale that Alice in Wonderland has always been to me. I find my own self falling down the rabbit hole sometimes, not wanting to but not knowing how not to as well. I want to/I don't want to... And the familiarity of clothing can be comforting in a remarkably powerful way. Strange how memories can reside in any tangible part of us.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Slogans on tee shirts-- All of this was a cleaver read. Nice job. jj

Kamana said...

t shirts for everything. really liked this.

Mrsupole said...

Just make me feel guilty because I did not do the laundry today, or yesterday. And yes the closet is looking a little empty.

Totally understand about the loneliness thing. Just remember you are never truly alone if you carry him in your heart.

God bless.

jackie dick said...

Viewing life from the rabbit hole, wearing a tee shirt...only you Brian! Don't know whether to laugh, cry, or comfort you...for that matter, comfort myself. Love this write. Love your imagination, your humanity! More, mad hatter, more!

Valerie said...

Wow! I feel I just got off a roundabout.... you led me in so many directions.

Mike Sutcliffe (Poetryman) said...

What a fantastic, kaleidoscopic, confused, muddled view of life. Really loved it.

♫♪♥PhilO♥♪♫ said...

I loved the way you have repeated the words and have given an effect!

And how you took us on a journey from hiding behind a shirt, down the rabbit hole and then running naked :)

As usual, I loved it :)

riverurkepoetry said...

great job- :) took us on a ride that made us think...

Kerry O'Connor said...

Such a take on the Alice motif as I have not seen before. Your social commentary is always cutting edge.

velvetinapurrs said...

I really enjoyed the interweaving, the fantasy of the Wonderland, set against the reality of life, the mundane, great sense of humour expressed, revolving around the absurdity of things, but leading to the poignant end..I especially like 'so thin the wind blade slips the rib cage..'

Ravenblack said...

Let the T-shirts do the talking is how it is commonly. And it all eventually becomes obscured, dirtied, faded. No more t-shirts, nothing to wear, and now where would one run to, I wonder. Is narrator running away or running free? Interesting.

annell said...

A wonderful write!

C Rose said...

Stirring so much up in this piece, the repetition so perfectly placed. Really grabbed me into the words, a fantastic way to metaphor the scurry of our day to day. ~ Rose

Steve King said...

Yes, it's easy to lose the inner life and hide behind a jumble of logos and slogans and any other of the many distractions available to us.

Great windup. Enjoyed seeing this.

Beachanny said...

In a time of falling, and fall, and falling down into the hole, into the winter, dressing up as characters, becoming, disguising, trying on - you take all of this and add t-shirts and the laundry song to make a unique work distinctively your own. This is a blast! and you sir, do more than just rock (which you always do so admirably)!

kaykuala said...

Brian, living out of a suitcase I heard before, now this! Living with T-shirts and jeans can be smart, simple and a washing machine full of them. Dropping down the rabbit hole can be tantalizing, with lots of unknowns! Great!

Hank

colleen said...

I have a closet like that too. And a poem where my words f e l l down a well. I'm wondering what the tshirt says. I like the progression here.

joanna said...

There's a lot to this one, brian. Love the Alice references and the formatting. Also, I haven't heard the word "akimbo" in far too long. :)

eclipsingwinter said...

At one time, I wore everyone's slogans, logos, advertisements plastered across my chest like a walking billboard (although there is no stretch imagination that could relate it to a billboard other than the signage with much smaller print). I wonder why I wanted to express myself that way. Now, I find I am more content expressing myself my own way, without the laundry or the advertisement. If I am alone in my thoughts, so be it. At least they are wholly my thoughts.

Wonderful poetry, Brian. I always wondered what it would be like to really fall into a rabbit hole and have tea but I am afraid of the long term side effects of such a trip. *smiling*

Beth

James Rainsford said...

Fascinating form to this poem with many intriguing images Brian

Laurie Kolp said...

Brian~ You had me with the title. = )

Percy @dreamhopewrite said...

The format of this poem adds to the beauty of it. You tie in so many things into one amazing piece. Nice Brian!

Myrna R. said...

My brain is spinning a little. There's
so much in this. After so many comments, I have little to add. I run with you my friend.

Syd said...

I wear a lot of ragged tee shirts now. And I wear flannel shirts to cover them when it gets cold. Not much dressing up anymore, but I do own a suit. I like the thin shirts because they are cool in hot summer.

myheartslovesongs said...

your brilliance is blinding, Brian!

still not around much, i'm afraid, but i will be back to catch up on all i've missed, my friend. ♥ d

Rachel Hoyt said...

Your words may be too sexy for this page! I've been thinking about my material posessions a lot. They are piling up. I am NOT feeling naked. :)

lifeisaroadtrip said...

God, I hate that song and now you made me like it. I still love you any way. :-)

william said...

like lying on a comfortable sofa, im in, and lovin it ;)

Glynn said...

Without brands we'd have nothing to wear.

Heather said...

lonliness is my first thought here...i like the beat of this too....good stuff, ( as always!)

Zoe said...

This is brilliant. I, too, took a deeper, symbolic meaning of those shirts - it reminds me of some of the work of Bruce Dawe - the Aussie poet who sprang my poetic journey. Wow. I'm going back to read it again. Love the Alice allusions.

Zuzana said...

Oh, the title made me chuckle, I sure recall "Right said Fred", dancing away the nights to their tune at a bar in Spain.;))
xoxo

Lolamouse said...

How could I not love a poem that incorporates one of my favorite stories? You certainly touched a nerve here with the piling up of the slogan Ts. Interesting how we use of clothing to help us feel not so alone and yet it's just superficial.

Madeleine Begun Kane said...

You're such an imaginative writer!

Joanne Elliott said...

Wow!Guess this pool of comments begins with that word too, but what can one say. You've hit on so much the nerves just quake.