On Work

I work too much, I think. My nine-to-five
Seems sometimes like nine-to-infinity,
And time off-clock is eat-some-sleep-some-drive,
Then walk-in, clock-in, productivity.

I even dream of being on the job:
An endless stream of “hey do that, do this,”
Subconscious tasks impossible to solve,
Self-employment impossible to quit.

But sometimes friends invite me Friday nights
To live a bit, sit barstool for a few,
And I just might, though always to my right
I hear “what’s up”–“not much”–repeat ’til two.

Dull? Sure, but I’ve had dreams of work before
While unemployed, and woke to wish for more.

~Michael Danger Caskey


It’s Yours

There is a place in distant Aberdeen,
Unseen between the gravel esplanade
And golden sand; not quite a place of Dreams,
But where they visit reveling abroad.

Within this sacred seaside hideaway,
There somehow stays, imprinted in the sand,
A pair of prints around the ocean spray
That mark the steps of woman and a man,

Who, side by side then turning face to face,
Must have become reflections of the dreams
That danced, clasped hands, and reveled in this place,
But never stayed; not in fleeting Aberdeen.

I tried to stay as well, but not for long,
For there’s a different shore where I belong:

~Michael Danger Caskey

Published in: on September 23, 2012 at 10:05 am  Leave a Comment  
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To the One I’ve Only Dreamed Of

Dreaming Fantasy

I’ve seen you in my dreams before, some night
When I slept well, when sleep seemed more complete:
The stars aligned, conditions were just right,
And you were there, my vision made concrete.

Above were golden candles burning fog,
Beside you, marble made of mercury,
The dinner guests were chatting, yapping dogs,
All drinking and dining on mystery;

But of the things both great and small and more,
Of all the fantasies I saw there, too,
Of everything I fancied to explore,
I found I only dreamt because of you.

I don’t sleep quite so soundly anymore,
For beds feel much more empty than before.

~Michael Danger Caskey

Published in: on September 22, 2012 at 9:56 am  Leave a Comment  
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Something Wonderful

He asked me whether I was drunk, I think–
I think, because his query was declared–
And though I hadn’t had a thing to drink,
I cried “why yes I am,” and cared to share:

“The stars were never so illustrious
Before this moonless night to light the ground;
My limbs were never so industrious
That I feel I could run the world around;

The air was never fresher, nor so clean,
And never gulped by lungs so hungrily–
Each breath, each step, each sight, I dream!
Officer, I’m drunk on life; in ecstasy!”

“Don’t be a smartass with me, kid,” he said,
Wrote out a fine, and cuffed me on the head.

~Michael Danger Caskey

Published in: on April 3, 2012 at 1:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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I’m Just Along for the Ride

I had a conversation with my creative mind at too early o’clock one morning. It started when it tried to push this idea on me while I was sleeping.¬†Wake up, it says, I have this great idea. Go back to sleep, I respond. This guy is persistent, though. He keeps pestering me until I finally crack my lids open and blearily make a hand-scramble for a light switch. It’s on. Okay, I tell this creative prick with no sense of time, what is it? I have an idea for a poem, he tells me. So I gathered.

So we get to writing it down like a regular think-tank, kind of like a brain normally does for me, and I finally look at what we slapped on this wretched slip of scrap paper and ask my brain what it is. It’s a new poem, he says. No, I tell my brain, this is hardly a poem–the meter is some bastard child of sprung verse with irregular line lengths and everything I hate about modern poetry. Trust me, he responds, it’ll work. Well I go off on my brain and tell him I’m not keeping this and if he wants me to seriously write anything he should come to me with some serious ideas.

Well, next thing I know my mind goes on strike and brings in my stomach and the rest of the GI tract so that I’m puking everything up and need to be rushed to the emergency room for emergency IV fluids because my stomach decided to step on out and refused to take in water. I’ve since convinced him to continue working, but my mind must still be on the run because now all I’m left with is a crazy-sounding verse I must have written in a sleep-deprived dehydrated state and a slight headache.

I’m still not showing anyone the other poem. But here is the crazy-sounding verse I wrote. The format made sense at some point in time, and quite frankly, I’m not thrilled about it, but it’s been stuck in my head all day. No idea why.

For the Ride

We’re truck driving to a dumpster dive,
Would you like a ride?
We’ll take the oil-streaked street
To the pot of gold:
It’s a rainbow if you only
Close your eyes,
It will reach the sky
When the hills unfold,
And our garbage-guide glides us
To the treasure of the rust
At the shore beyond the sea,
Where the wine is lined with trust,
And all who died have sighed “we’re free!”

We’re truck driving to a dumpster dive,
Would you like to ride–

With me?


~Michael Danger Caskey

Published in: on December 10, 2011 at 9:47 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Group Therapy

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Group Therapy

A single burning lamp ahead, a shadowed hand behind;
The candle may have lit his face, but wrapped around his mind,
The shadow sent its tendrils in–the dark fruit of that vine
Had planted seeds inside his head that grew on teary brine.

Connected to that shadow-claw was yet another man
Who gripped a plastic bottle in his shade-reflected hand
With doses of forgetfulness–a memory per gram–
While inside fighting demons of his self-turned reprimand.

And all around the two of them were men like glass in stain:
All colored, fractured fragments of a broken window pane,
Which bore a jagged, splintered edge, but none of them the same,
As they had been transfigured since they broke from all the pain.

But in that shaky candlelight, beneath their private shade,
What no one seemed to notice was the picture that it made:
With everyone as jagged glass so carefully displayed,
A stained glass of a hopeful dream was finally portrayed.

Observers to this fateful scene were few and far between,
For everyone who gathered there were after their lost dream.
Not even I escaped their cry–the rape of therapy:
That shadow-hand was in command, and next in line was me.

~Michael Danger Caskey

Published in: on December 2, 2011 at 11:23 am  Leave a Comment  
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The Dream

The Dream

Last night I had the strangest dream
I couldn’t understand:
I dreamt I was a butterfly
Who dreamed he was a man,
So I thought I had insect legs
When they were human hands.

And when I went to spread my wings
Of yellow, red, and brown,
With veins of black outlined by white
In ways that would astound,
I found them cut by shoulderblades,
Which pinned me to the ground.

And when I looked for nectar by
The flower’s sweetest stink,
I raised it to my mouth, but found
My lips unfit to drink;
I had to drink the nectar of
The copper kitchen sink.

But when I found myself awake
And lying in the dark
With both eyes open, moving with
My startled, fluttering heart,
I vaguely saw my human hands,
But looked for insect parts.

~Michael Danger Caskey

Published in: on December 12, 2010 at 12:00 am  Comments (1)  
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