..from THE LOST NEIGHBORHOOD.. ‘Thoughts Like Angels’

Thinking of you, now
Wondering if

Not where or how
But suddenly

This is
What we don’t talk about


©Dean J. Baker





Many the lessons not obvious to the culture
of mediocrity and equality; of my own, each
would test belief, aid me in discovery

In the home, the discipline of obedience:
acceptance consisting of performance in school,
loving warmth the norm for ages then

How scores of strength and athletics beat out
any weepy dependent rebellious rage:
what mattered was the goal, not the widow’s ashes.

In perfect ostracism would you obey:
too smart, too clever, not good enough, yes
suspected of something, I remained

Held myself without success, or vindication
from my source I could not stray –
broken stay whole, in my truth, a sad betrayal

Pleasing no one as a rule I pledge my soul
not inventing interest, nor stopping to duel
with what would be merely complaint.

From the bitter victories the sour mules disagreed
while I ate whole the mysteries, one without
one to gain from where I remain most devout.

© Dean J. Baker

poems are posted to share, be shared, and entice those who love the work to owning the books from which they are excerpts








from Of Flesh Sculptures And Abandoned Love… ‘Insomnia 2’

This is the world at 6 a.m. when I am unasleep.
No one to whom I can speak, I smoke endlessly,
drinking water in peace, not subject to the night creatures.

I pay the freight for memories I can no longer afford, which
have become too expensive to keep. I wage a war against
scientists altering their opinions every generation, and
when the shift changes I am on strike against nothing.

Baffled by the culture of opinion for not noticing
I have been singing them out of the maze they
constantly reconstruct for decades, unsurprised they
would rather judge than love, since that is their place
in this Book Of Grudges they call society now.

I know that if by error they happen to read this poem, they
will be on my side and want to seek out those bastards of whom I speak.
If I could tell them, I might join in that glorious hunt.

I thought once there might have been someone in the
darkness, who was calling my name, eager to be found. Yet
it turns out there are many things in which I am mistaken.

They never said they do not want to harm me, and for that
latent honesty I am mostly grateful. I still do not believe we
have anything mutual to discuss and acknowledge.
At least until the next mistake is engraved, my name featuring prominently.

Where they sleep now is my territory, and I can be counted on
to lead them from their silent fears across the plains of night:
encouraging them to leap, allowing that they ought to dream
of sheep who fly off cliffs without knowing they too will awake.

©Dean Baker

..from BLOOD UPON THE MOON.. ‘Karla, Monster’

image from twitter account







Poor Paul. All he could do was rape. What a thrill
to subjugate. Karla whispered to him, ‘I like to eat
pussy, you know. You can be king, deciding fates.
I will be the Queen of their souls.’ Paul was decided.

Previously all he had done was rape and beat, now
he’d have some fun. Own the instruments of doom,
be their final sun who would love him so: his wife,
mother to the squall of children, would make him right.

To kill, to take the life possessed; absorb the sweet
trembling flesh into his own: finally, born again. All
by the sexy frau revealing greatness: what he’d
been missing by strike and run, rabbit. Gone, again.

Poor stupid Paul. Karla ruling after all. In charge
of schemes where he’d be set to take the major blame.
Misled, beaten, so what the hell: the prizes a once
in a lifetime gift that didn’t have to be replaced.

Solicitous, knowing innocence, hooking fish. Come
with me and see the world of my malignant cunt,
she’d think. I’ve done my sister but the bitch died.
So maybe repeated death repays that mistake.

Sweet blonde, for whom to eat was to die. Feed
that twat like I’d eat your breath. Queen Tarantula
in the web of bliss where slaves obey: yet
disbelieved, must by King Paul’s rope strangulate.

And afterwards shaken up eliciting tears and muff,
men trolled in clubs while cops powerless watch. The beaten
girl in the skirt, the evil bride: o holy slut, you lie.
Put on trial by men who rush to judgement, then she smiles.

Prison camp and more muff. Any who aren’t tough
enough, she’ll rule til they choose or die. Another idiot
afterwards giving children; a paradise of life in
the Caribbean, perhaps Quebec, ticked away in suburbia.

Those girls aren’t women. Even her sister, amidst the
stupid Paul’s crimes. Karla knows the masque complete,
her existence a taunt of defeat, eating ordinariness. Listen,
you can hear her laugh same as when those kids died.

She breathes, she enjoys, the dresses up.
Seductively pleasing, hooked one more willingly who’s
complicitous. Of course it can’t be we’re guilty, too
that she’s on top of the world, minus common work.

But this does please her to be known, alive
with her victims dust. You and I undone, she just hasn’t
yet gotten around to: so sufficient that we rage inside,
against the night she brings to choke the life out of us.

©Dean Baker


*Paul is Paul Bernardo. Former Scarborough rapist never caught; met Karla Homolka and married. She’d volunteer for ‘his’ ideas to kidnap, torture and sexually abuse teenage schoolgirls.
They also killed her sister by feeding her drugs while Karla had sex with her.
They videotaped it all. Hid the tapes in their house. He was caught; she suspected, with detectives – and journalists present in clubs -watching for days she still picked up men for casual sex.
The government made a deal with her pleading a victim of his: the innocent bride beaten up and manipulated, because the cops did not find the tapes in their house til afterwards.
Given that he raped and ran, did not kill, it’s believed through evidence of the tapes she manipulated him into willful events, and really was in charge of the schemes and murders and didn’t mind taking some beatings to establish that as a fact.
He got life. She did a plea deal for 12 years.
She’s out living in the open, with children. And in the news again.

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..from In Riparian Fields… ‘Hives’


Stupid non-entities,
likely illiterate, searching for power,
with no identities
surrendering to Mohammadans
or Jaysus
or even Boo, Dah

While every government in the
West holds us captive,
occupying minds with trivial
pursuits, some report as news
are not necessarily evil
but reflect

Where we’re all headed, once
the command arrives
to start learning Mandarin,
get back into that hive: see
without cash
the Emperor’s hiring everybody

To be on his side, since
nobody got the hand-written
message in a bunch of books; old
poetry you know,
even the poet was never so wise
to assume truth to be specific, or

Told without the associated lies
would not encourage belief in a book
or an ego as a substitute for life
where you’d discover a prize, but said
hey look
there are lambs and wolves and noise

Listen to the silence –
not quiet, not the absence of a dementia
not in some bereft of inspiration denial
or rabid embrace of mindless holy hysteria:
forget Hollywood
its fun house of slanted mirrors and instant

Revelations of communication
where nobody says anything worth hearing anyway –
don’t even recall that still small voice,
that’s the dwarf you’re sitting on
it’s only in one moment, dismissed as

Where you piled insights on waiting for
the payoff; the goods to be delivered
and nothing was understood, nor
brought forward to finalize:
the costs of avoiding what you always know
is no surprise, anyway

©Dean Baker

..from THE POETRY HOTEL.. ‘What Happens At Local Restaurants’

Twenty minutes waiting, people
become impatient
One half hour cheese and grease
are grating

One more time later launch
the brown alligator
Twenty seconds debating
another spider barks

Fifty miles sailing
broken pipes dreams burst
Twenty miles away thumbing rides
to a new horizon

Nothing on fire burns
close to what disfigures thee alive
Smoke and flames desire
what’s cooking on the pyre we deny

©Dean Baker

..from THE ESCHATOLOGICAL DOG.. ‘Bird Brains’

The sun’s not yellow, it’s chicken!” – Bob Dylan

Everyone has an opinion these days, some have even
Taken it upon themselves to capture these on the page

Whether rhyming or not various lines make their way
Through the air and flames to take a place, to reposit

Themselves in the form of art or some such imitation
Of the forgotten real thing – even the desire for poetry

Is misplaced, so great that surrogates resembling those
Are daily made in the form of solicitous belief, eager

Dispensations of neuroses confidently stated as though
These were the first and finally only things discovered, not

Caricatures designed to distract and placate, without
The slightest apology for the life pecked away as the writer’s

Riches are gathered once more for attribution to their own holy
Parade of vocalized chirps and tweets where even poetry

Has succumbed, gotten a bad name since there are so many
Poets I think there must somewhere be an obvious absence

Of clerks, and grocers willing to work for the joy of it all:
The lowest common denominator now a substitute for the truth

©Dean Baker