Remember kids:
Scantily clad prostitution intuitively capitalist.

She thinks slowly,
already pulling down her
already wet panties
already clinging to her ankles.

In this Victorian room
life mingles with violent apparitions.
An actress giving him evidence
of what he wants:
Her stock,
which the gentlemen always appreciates.

“Oh god! Oh god
Yes! YES!!”

i wonder if the sex was good?

“Father Love Fuck”

a blizzard among yellow leaves

“I’m a whore!”

dead hollow tree . . .

“Afterwards I’ll need a vibrator

I’m a bitch-whore!”

SCREAMING, screaming

father . . .”
i would feel better if you hated me.

I feeling wooden,
have termites eating away at my soul.
I pray for the blood of me to fall out,
Flooding this thing
I inspire,
things I might desire.
to suppress this feeling.
to drench myself.

“call girl, glorified whore!”

she cries alone.
_____________Empty inside,
except for her finger
_____________Empty inside,
except her lover’s tongue
_____________Empty inside,
except for a paying customer’s dick.

In the religious right,
she wondered why she was wrong

And she’d hope to keep this face
of morality,
immortality all night long.


Give me this moment

to absolve myself of my sins.

A lapsed catholic confession over broken wood.

Speak and be heard, my Son.

This dry throat.

Grab at what is bothering you, my Son.

Kneel before me (my faith,)

we involved the involved presence.

My voice, pressed against the wire screen.

Kneel, my Son, before the voice of God.

We light candles here,

converse before the face of god.

Separate voice from meaning,

this list of sins given in haste.

Yes, my Son.

I understand, my Son.

We are all God’s children, my Son.

The sins based in faith,

falling at your feet, unwashed,

walking barefoot on the street.

We must become aware of God’s plan, my Son.

This is where we have fallen,

underneath the stoplight,

here on this walk.

Faith will return like that of the rising sun, my Son.

These are the phases of the moon,

under which we spoke.

Keep the faith, my Son.

That is why his blood was spilled, my Son.

The tears fell three days later

and consciousness becomes a readying storm.

Yes, my Son, the rainbows as God’s promise.

Only now does the storm break and winter is upon us.

My Son, do not become tempted by the darkness.

The cloudy vision has lifted,

my actions defined by the setting of the snow.

God Bless you my Son, say 3 Hail Mary’s . . .

and a prayer for god.

Open-Mic Clichés

photograph by Keith Bloomfield

(Check one, check two.
Can I get a little more monitor?)

Hey, I’m glad to be here tonight.
How y’all doing tonight?

Um . . .Hi, my name is Greg Brown.
I’m Greg Brown
I’m going to be reading tonight. . .I
Uh. . .I have a few pieces.

This is a song I just finished
I wrote it in about 15 minutes and
I’ve been working on it for 15 years
So it’s a little rought so bear with me.

This is a cover.
it’s about love.
It’s about stopping the violence.
My girlfriend just broke up with me a few weeks ago
when I stopped doing smack after a three day drinking binge,
so I wrote this.
I wrote it while I was high on mushroom tea.
I wrote it in the bathroom after the Flag Day parade.

This is my first time performing in public,
and my last time here.
I moving to New York.
I’m touring Europe.
This weekend I’ll be playing at Joe’s Coffee Shack.

This next one is from my CD.
I recorded it about 4 years ago and
It hasn’t been released yet.
I’m selling them right over there at that table
I also have t-shirts, underwear, and headbands for sale.

Anyway. . .I’m going to do two more . . .oh
This is my last piece.

1, 2, 3, 4 . . . Oh wait let me start again

Thank you.


“Open Mic Cliches” can be heard on the Definitve Greg Brown Collection which can be downloaded here.


Photograph by Adrian Boliston

That sound “th,”
as if it were coming out through imagination.
Tentacles coming over and out,
the tentacles of the Leviathan entangle the Sargasso Sea,
Tentacle enravels entangled ship,
sinking underneath.

Leviathan sinks the flat world of old,
the sails had been set in search of gold, they said.
New routes to the east, they said.

So they set their sails, left docks, sailed off into the unknown.
The unknown ships sailed off into the Sargasso Sea.
And seaweed and vine coming out of the water,
sinking ships entangled.

Underneath the fish stare
and men are trying to sink ships on the advice of God,
and man has fallen underneath the seaweed
and has fallen for ages underneath his own _______.

Is a flower now.
Is green now.
And now the spring petals bloom,
delicate petals bloom.
Underneath blue sky,
the clouds sail the high winds of Earth
in search of a better home.

Clouds in search of some rain to cast.
Clouds cast down the shadow,
clouds give sun to the flora,
the fauna and the ages of green upon green.

Green looks up expectantly.
Green looks up at sky, and awaits rain.
Awaits to be underneath.

Begin planet,
Earth it seems,
according to the Good Book it seems.
Now on the third day we created the _______,
and on the fourth day we ______.

Some things are better left unsaid, she said,
and some things are better he said.

Now start underneath.
Now new, now garden, now grow into ______.

Better left, she said.

Hold hands underneath.

Watch the fruit fall now.
First harvest, he said,
not understanding the meaning.

Define: the moment in which we are at a loss.
Define: in their badness reign.
Define what _____means to you.
Things said,
said again later,
said once more for him, she said.

Underneath the tree,
begin to watch the fruit drop now.
Find water now.
Find leaves now.
Find ______ underneath the tree.

From the chapbook “Outside of.”