Monday, May 31, 2010


we redefined attraction
in the back room of
that little bodega
over on the corner of
park and grand

the clerk asked if we
wanted to buy an audience
with the keepers of
understanding or a 6-pack
of corona on sale for $5.99

but we already found
the answers we were
looking for encoded in the
fingerprints left behind
on reawakened flesh

Sunday, May 30, 2010


succumbing to the
forces of sabotage
he sent the muses on
a search-and-destroy
mission to capture
the sky and send it
crashing into the depths
of the underworld
leaving the poet
devoid of inspiration

Saturday, May 29, 2010

waiting for the rain

rain came in and
took residence in the
back country dancing
crazy with the stars

we took refuge in the
shelter set beneath the
trees and listened
to the melody of a

slow steady jazz song
playing in the dirt
from the safety of a
canvas stronghold

laughing nervously we
ran our fingers through
droplets pooling on the
surface of waterproof skin

we held our breath
and considered the
implications of entering
this place we kind of knew

in the solitude of a
summer night we
burrowed into the
comfort of warm bodies

and fell in with the rhythm
of the rain as we pushed
back the boundaries
of the unexpected cold

Friday, May 28, 2010

This cracks me up.

I love this kid!

Sweet Tea

James flashed his biggest fake grin at the people that swarmed through the aisles. He tried not to cringe as sticky, sweaty hands pawed at the cards and left dirty fingerprints on the glossy surfaces. It made him mad that these people didn’t respect the cards. Even if they were just the cheap ones, they still represented dreams and goals.

He was convinced that Miller put him near the concession stand on purpose. James suspected that Miller asked the food venders to sell cotton candy and chili fries, just so his cards would be ruined. He may have even scheduled the convention in the South just to spite James. Or, it could just be that James hadn’t had any tea all week and he was cranky from caffeine withdrawal. Anything was possible.

Even more than the humidity in the South, James hated that disgusting, syrupy concoction that the locals called tea. He searched every restaurant and coffee shop in town with no luck. Not a single one carried unsweetened tea on the menu. He tried to bribe the owner of the diner across the street to make some up, just for the week. The woman shot him a look that was a cross between amusement and disbelief. She chuckled at him from behind her cigarette and walked off to pour another round of coffee for the morning crowd. James began to wonder if tea leaves were shipped to the South with the sugar already mixed in.

Sunday, May 23, 2010


careful observation
showed that she
was unable to
grasp the magnitude
of the perfidy in her
interpretation of desire

emotion annihilated
by unrelenting reason
after having fallen
a thousand times
and collapsing
into perpetual

a lifetime of searching
for meaning
left her in a state
of infinite isolation
avoiding attraction
for the sake of survival

Saturday, May 22, 2010

the implication of madness

he shrugged his shoulders
and smiled as he told us
that he had calculated new
mechanisms for disaster

we were not in agreement
with the experiment -- convinced
that the outcome would have
no relevance for civilization

he was insensitive to our concerns
desire to be among the greatest
took precedence over the
extreme panic perspective

our fading hope in redemption
vibrated across the galaxy
and we were left with no other
option but to prepare
for unmitigated destruction

Friday, May 21, 2010

Currently Reading...

Eye on the Universe, Gail Gray
The Metaphysics of a Vegetarian Supper, Andrew Taylor
1000th Monkey, Issues 1 and 2

Thursday, May 20, 2010

at the center

he leaned back in his
chair and admitted that
he was affected by
indirect adaptations
and h-bomb explosions

but he still intended to
find the root cause of
self-interest and annihilation
human desire has
little meaning to him

he explored time back to
one second after the big bang
but he was unable to
resolve the depth of the issue
and process eventually
took over his need for product

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

they watch

Paranoia floods the faces of those below. They see the watchers and wonder why they are there. How does someone with OCD enter the building? The cracks are everywhere. Too many to count. Step on a crack and you’ll break your mother’s back.

      “Write about this bobby pin.”

Chaos gently flows back into order. Swirling spirals of flesh mix with the sea.

      "Life is a digression.”

The self-conscious look up at those looking down.

      “There should always be a button you can push to get out of death. You really should be able to change your mind.”
      “The nurse would step in.”

Why is that gorilla wearing a suit?

The bobby pin floats in the tide. It occupies more of the sea and less of the flesh. One more line in the fragmented sea.

      “I have something to tell you.”

A solitary beam of light escapes the alien ship held captive by poles and cables.

      “It needs more lights. Preferably three.”

The guards stand watch. Don’t look them in the eye. Who guards the cables? Who guards the guards?

Follow the swirls. They’ll take you to Oz. Which one leads to Kansas?

The guards are everywhere, watching. Don’t let them see you mix with the sea and the flesh. Don’t let them stop you from following the path that leads towards home.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


i sat with girl under
the stars and we
reminisced about the time
when we constructed
temporary ghosts and
set them loose in
unpredictable frolic

the manifestation was
both fanciful
and frightening
we watched in wonder
as they flashed in front
of us and then
vanished back into the
darkness of empty space

the details of the
ghoulish enchantment
belong only to us and
the creatures who
hear our secrets
whispered in the dark

Monday, May 17, 2010


obeying the sophistication
of danger
a part of each joined
in expression
in marked contrast
to the rigid works of the past

but could be
just as bad
aided in some
shallow stereotype
about following what
went down

for all this time
simply meshed together
but aware of the symbolism
of treating the
feelings as they come

Sunday, May 16, 2010

a new course of action

they sat beneath the safety of
fragrant flowers and quietly
discussed the corporate
value of perpetuating
fixed satisfaction following
news reports declaring the
death of the queen

beyond the wall of mourning
masses they spoke of
goodness, beauty, and truth
increased obligations
and the day lucifer fell
thoroughly pondering the
aftermath of the transgression

Saturday, May 15, 2010

tomorrow i will take over the world - an epic tale of super villainy, part 3

read part 2 here

part 3

i thought about joining a
super-villain syndicate but then
i read the annals of
mediocre villainy
they don’t make super-villains
like they used to
more like super-kittens
than super-villains

i will start my own corporation
for super-villains
i will build a super secret
lair to use as our head quarters
and we will have an evil handshake
that no one knows but us
and membership cards
laminated to make them official

i will give them nefarious schemes
to carry out to make sure they
are real villains and not just kittens
because i can buy kittens
or steal them
kittens are cuter than villains

i will be the mastermind of this
new organization and the villains
will be my minions who
carry out my dastardly plans
to take over the world

Friday, May 14, 2010


he violated the rules
in gangland but
justified the transgression
in the telling of
unpleasant truths

he strongly believed he was
saved by connection
from a murderous fate

but common resentment
grew exponentially
and whispers crawled
in the shadows

Thursday, May 13, 2010


more than
a matter of
summarizing the
value of chosen

the meaning is
only part
of what is

a small part of
the debate
enclosed in

change is
more than
these words

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


hope carried

she pointed out the direction
of the suicide personnel
though somewhat vague and
we set forth in confidence
to force sacrifice while secretly
hoping for arbitration

obligation resting
on misrepresentation
we waited long enough to see
if hope would be spared or if
the conduct of history would
be maintained

Currently Reading...

Early Trouble and ceilings, by Jeffrey S. Callico
Burnside Review, 6.1

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Open Mic

I will be at Gypsy Blues open mic on Wednesday night. I might even read a poem or two. Hell, I might even embarrass myself, just for your entertainment. That alone is worth coming out to see.

If you're in the area, come have a pint and enjoy some local entertainment.

Sunday, May 9, 2010


they mimic the
light of a
cooling fire
collapsing against
the surface
until it slowly
wastes away

unlucky enough to
know the meaning
of relative permanence
they search for ways
to avoid fading
into a featureless

Saturday, May 8, 2010

the elements of breakdown

the design is simple
but we make it complicated
sabotaging the universe
by quantifying everything that
touches us or comes close

we search for the shadows
and the hiding places
to disrupt our basic needs
with fantasies about connection
failing to see what has always
been right in front of us

despite our propensities for
solitude we sometimes find
that mysterious thing that we
didn’t know was lacking
and wonder how we ever
survived before

a whirlwind of events take us
down the rabbit hole
and we are confronted with
a reality that is both
beautiful and strange
and brings us into a
new realm of understanding

Friday, May 7, 2010

tomorrow i will take over the world - an epic tale of super villainy, part 2

read part 1 here

part 2

i asked my friend about
his plan to become
a super hero
he didn’t have one
super heroes are born, he said
or chosen by intergalactic
councils or bitten by
radioactive spiders

but i realized that
anyone can be a villain
as long as you are an
evil genius with an
unlimited budget for
laser beams and
giant robots and a
volcano fortress of doom

yes, i will be a super villain
i will invent dastardly plans
for disaster
with my evil gadgets
and i will save kittens
because they are cute
and because i can
tie laser beams
to their heads and use them
in my plot for
world domination

chicks may dig war, but
hot chicks dig super villains
tonight i will become dr. awful
and women will flock to my
fortress of doom to entertain me
while i devise insidious
schemes to take over the world

(part 3 to follow next week)

Thursday, May 6, 2010

natural resources

their bodies were found
lying above the surface
exposed with no clear purpose
it was blatant that we
blundered the formula

arguing that our intervention
would have worked
if we had joined the
independence movement
and had the courage to
go even further
in the depopulated towns

but we were not willing
to stop thinking about
the mortality of exposure
and the likelihood of losing
was frightening

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


the mechanism
           and now enables the user
to control minds with
              such precision
           as to
  create new figurations
     of reality
a radical attempt at
               post-nuclear doom

               there are no
this fallout humanity
     and ancient
but the conspiracy theorists
are already

new life created
   but not approved
      with a wild aesthetic
barely resembling
             the ancestors
          that once populated
the universe
               the implications
       have yet to be

             and so we gather
    in the shadows
to watch what happens
             and preserve the
         remains of society
               until the heroes return
to take them down

Monday, May 3, 2010

tomorrow i will take over the world - an epic tale of super villainy, part 1

part 1

my friend told me yesterday
that he wishes he could
be a super hero and
fly around and save people
from burning buildings and
giant monsters like superman
but without the tights

but here is what i think
i would rather be a
super villain and i would
be called dr. awful
i would go to school and
get a PhD in super villainy
and i would be an evil genius

i would be an awful villain
not one who does awful things
but one who does things awfully
i would devise nefarious schemes
to take over the world
and destroy fortresses of good
with giant laser beams
and a maniacal laugh

i would be that genius who creates
master plans but blunders some
small detail and ends up saving kittens
instead of dominating the world
people would cheer for me
and say that i am good
without knowing that next time
my plans will be successful and
i will take over the world

(part 2 to follow later this week)

"that sort of thing" now available for purchase.

"that sort of thing" is now available at the etsy store.
If you don't have an etsy account, you can pay by check or money order. Email me for mailing address: trishacastillo (at) aol (dot) com

Copies are $5.00 each, plus 75 cents for shipping.

First printing. Limited to 50 hand-numbered copies.Printed on 20# light grey paper with dark red cover. Hand bound using a Japanese stab binding technique.

Copies of "Idealists on the Funeral Train" are still available here. Same price, $5.00 each, plus 75 cents for shipping.

Special Deal: purchase both chapbooks for $9.00 w/ shipping included.

Sunday, May 2, 2010


i tried to pin down
that exact moment
when we shifted to
borrowed time and the
world began to move
at a frenetic pace

the flash in his eyes
showed that hope had
not diminished but
i still longed to return
to that point just before
he fell to earth and the
crusades began

he calls my name and
again i am submerged
in the peculiarity of
his brilliance
vivid pictures of existence
dance fleetingly
through my mind

stolen moments of sleep
reveal glimpses of the past
but he circumvented history
to recreate the future and
i no longer remember
where i came from

Saturday, May 1, 2010

they speak of implications

unable to find refuge
in the shadows they
shifted toward the
mechanisms emerging from
low frequency vibrations
dependence cannot be broken

precisely the same type of
fixation that underlies
autoeroticism and gives
chronic love momentum to
catch up with moral breakdown
all agreed to blame the
world instead of receiving failure

satisfaction rose slowly to the surface
to be measured definitively for its
ability to generate unconscious desire
cataloged like circumference or
the fear and trembling that comes
at the moment of salvation