Sibling Rivalry

The dew is resting desperately
on your coma blossoms.
A man with a cane
whistles steam through a stoma,

and at once, the aroma
of distress arrests the scene.
The sky goes green
with nervous discharge.

Of course we’re the ones
to barge in too soon
for the reckoning of final lines.
It’s what defines the both of us,

cements us in the minds
of all of those who bear witness
to our becoming. It’s true
that I’ve been strumming

these empty strings beyond
the point of harmony.
And it’s true, I’ve been disarming
the army of my memory

in a way that seems alarming.
I’m charming my way up the ranks,
and I’ll thank you
to speak no more of it.

The entire hierarchy reeks
of broken fists. Our narrative
persists against all continuity.
How is one so ill-disposed

to conflict to dispose of incongruity?
We pose a portrait on the firmament,
a portrait of hunger, red and fleshy,
and with deathly grace

we disappear into the drooling womb
that birthed us. One life,
worth its weight in exuberance.
One life, worth its weight in need.

-r. miller

The Other Foot

Released by whispers,
a blistering satire exposes itself
in a running gag.
Such a drag, this air lit with fatigue.
Sitting on this shifting fence post,
leagues away from the trauma,
I offer a balm
to the bristling ground.
Found footage. Frottage in closed cars.
There’s no sense in these stars,
these stars overhead
which for all I know lie dead
in the mouth of the universe,
liquefying in a black sea of saliva.
There’s no sense.
No sense either in this pensive state
in which I’ve landed,
branded with a maelstrom
the size of a clock on my chest.
Clearly the resting phase has ended.
A memory descends and aligns itself
with the fissures of dusk,
my reflection affixed
to a husk of itself,
and my health suddenly spirals
into a flaccid cartoon.
New moon tonight, meaning no moon,
but a tune you can whistle
in one of five keys.
In these thriving times,
one can’t help but marvel
at the sublime elasticity
of our perspectives.
Invectives approaching from all sides,
sliding into formation
to overtake the central nervous system.

-r. miller

I Never Wanted to End Up a Townie

I don’t get out much these days,
though the days are longer.

Throngs of wilted passion
amass on the horizon,
one sunset away from decay.

They say that if you still your breathing
you can hear the heaving of the hills.

Some of us crave more thrills,
so we spill our brains on brutal pages,
staging more ornate displays of truth.

And then the tooth of the matter
sinks in…

-r. miller


I have a loosened sense
of what grounds me these days.
Ever wake up and find
you’re in a haze
of arbitrary demands?
I mean, look at these hands…
Washed by the cold sands
of an ongoing desire to be other.
I can smother a stance
with the best of ’em,
so leave the dancing to me.
I’ll be here all week,
growing meeker and muckier
minute by minute.
Minute by day.
Day by apocalypse.

-r. miller

We’re Your Worse Side

The persistent breakage in lace
curtains is the dawn that you seek.
“Come here, receive your blows pipsqueak.”
Blood, like light, collects on your face.

Turning against this frigid lust,
you’ve inspired our derision.
We, in turn, make an incision
in the withering skin of trust,

and all at once, a rush of flies
pours like water from a fountain.
Of this blight, you’ve made a mountain
from whose peak is heard anguished cries.

It’s childhood trauma once again,
a drama whose worn out welcome
plumbs your spirit’s murkiest slum
where this entire time, we’ve been.

-r. miller

The Revolution Won’t Be Verbalized

This is the cadence of discontent.
It isn’t your flagrance that feeds

the unrepentant flower,
but the power expressed

in letting go. Air flows,
then accumulates into a fist,

forswearing every last trace
of its once listless state,

and you are sated by
the enamel of my affections.

Who burns for connection?
This is a rejection of all

preceding narrative forms,
all things born from dust

We must trust in our passions
if we’re to fashion an era.

-r. miller