D. B. DEVILLIERS

Poetry

To The Woman Who Drove Me Home, Or Most Of The Way Anyway

there was an impact and I woke up and
there we were
way off the side of state route xxx
I wasn’t driving
that doesn’t fit well poetically but I feel like I have to say it
you drove me home and I was bleeding still
I am as I write this and I thank god that you were
there to drive me three quarters of a
mile up the road and I walked it the rest bag
on back going to alaska aren’t we and
you’re a saint
maybe not canonized but that’s the fault of the catholic church
and not yours.

How To Go To Work/The Security Standards In Heaven Are Pretty Lax

you get drunk pass out you suffer from
menial problems you become
enraged at the broken dryer and
now you don’t have clothes to wear to work
you wear them anyway gotta have a job
your hands and feet tingle from a lack of
circulation this is a new development you
wonder from which poor decision this has most
probably stemmed
you drive in anyway
your shaky fingers stumble to punch in but you do and
you know from which poor decision exactly this
problem has stemmed
condition upgraded to functional
or downgraded as the case may be
you stand there and you have nothing to say
and hello good morning how are you
you say hello and good morning anyway and I am uh
good thanks how about you
it’s one of those days isn’t it
why yes it is except no one says it and you never say it can’t
show weakness now and even though you don’t know why and
even though you always are
and this was gonna be a happy poem but I guess
life isn’t that
but hell I ain’t dead yet
and when I am I’m gonna
stand up tall
take a good pull
draw down on Saint Peter
right there outside of paradise and
kick the fucking door in.

Let’s Go Swimming Together Forever

And I’ll run run run away quit my job not
even quit go on break drive off again never call I’ll
do it again and again why doesn’t this all fit
together why can’t I make it fit why doesn’t
it fit what the fuck is wrong with me does it
fit anyone or do we all just kind of go
on unfitting and some people either stop
noticing or always or sometimes notice and just deal with
it but why can’t I just do that why am I always
thinking about it the unfitting maladjustment guess
given my decision making I’m not doing myself any
favors and but I can’t help but think somewhere there
must be some individual specimen of primitive
organism recently evolved to breathe air that gets
tired of breathing air and walks back into the ocean
and that’s more me than I am but here I am
still breathing air.

Transit/Stasis

Right time wrong place write it why not
it’s only ink paper and time you’re the
only one who has to know if that’s how you want it
but no that’s not in your nature you crave the
attention much as you hate that
you need it as much as you hate the
very notion of a need for attention in
anyone but write it write it out parse it learn something
about yourself this is how you do it you
introverted exhibitionist you’re a
curious piece of work aren’t you
curious enough you hope but enough for what
for money? recognition? to escape death?
to understand? to understand what
to finally understand what the fuck it is you want?
or rather to finally just hurry up and want anything more than
one more drink to want anything
more than mere escape
because you can’t do that no one can and your efforts
will kill you and that’s not escape
because time time time it passes it
runs out that’s what it does it’s
cirrhosis a bad wreck a short rope the end of time
but wasn’t faulkner a drunk too yeah but wasn’t he also a
miserable son of a bitch and if all you had to do to
create great work was suffer and be miserable
would you do it if you could make that choice
but it doesn’t work that way the work comes second and
you suffer anyway and most of us aren’t lucky enough
good enough whatever to create much of anything
so now you’ve got something written down to
remember it by but it’s transient transitory transit
transition into another sentence what’s the word thought phrase page
word thought thought word salad this long forgetting o fallibility
of memory of all things but maybe if you really write it you’ll
know yourself a little better afterwards but out of ink paper and time you’re
running out of one and you need all three to do the thing
or four if you count actually having something to
say but who has that dostoyevsky? kant? probably they did but
who knows after all what the fuck did socrates know about himself anyway
did alexander know himself well enough to know that the
typhus would kill him does god know he’s a kid holding a
magnifying glass to an anthill on a sunny day do you figure
pol pot knew himself or bin laden or the
buildings or the planes or the murdered
millions and all the time ravels
out and you into it and
it into you and the
page too.

A Computer Curated Several Advertisements Just For Me

Season’s greetings I’m a content creator I create content and
I influence that’s right I’m
an influencer too
For bookings, contact: …
I create content
I influence
that’s right my influence is grown on a
server farm in another hemisphere
it’s fake influence but pretend pretend pretend with me
that’s where the content’s used as a fertilizer
its sole productive purpose
the waste products excreted by my mind, like this here
writing as a psychic eliminatory process
piped around in fiber optics
internet as a sewage pipe that flows really really fast
works better fertilizing than cow shit and yes it’s vegan it’s
gluten free it’s non gmo one
hundred percent certified content
potentially useful in the hobbyist manufacture of
high explosives been done before but
see now that’s off label use
shouldn’t do that, and well anyway let’s get to it
I’d like you to eat my content
now look here it’s real tasty got some zest to it don’t you
want to eat my content I’ll nuke a box of frozen
content for dinner tonight yeah
yeah why don’t we do that and while it
spins and machine whirs science heating
we can argue for instance about what words don’t
mean over dinner too why not why don’t we
argue have a nice topical argument good English manners
talk the weather argue the climate over some unevenly
heated content fresh from the microwave it’ll be
so very politic how terribly clever we are we can
split the brick cleaner it’s a stellar pairing why don’t we
trade swigs back and forth no need for glasses til we
choke in blood each of us trying to say
you’re not drowning I am
only producing pained spluttering monosyllables
interspersed frequently with hindbrain gurgling, indecipherable
but that’s a rather different manner of argument isn’t it because before
I didn’t believe in what I was saying anyway and
you didn’t believe in what you were saying and anyway
I didn’t think it really mattered you didn’t either and anyway
neither of us managed to change the other’s mind, unsurprising
and we were both wrong all along but at first at least we
sort of knew that but then we wound up accidentally
convincing ourselves we wanted to talk about
it and believe things and we wanted to
eat my content don’t you
don’t you.

On the Instructive Properties of Regret w/r/t Becoming Less of a Douchebag

Very often you don’t get to apologize for
the things you regret the most
often times you never get to make
the apologies you’d most like to make
but at least take solace in knowing
it wouldn’t do any good anyway
these apologies only make the person making them feel better
very often the best you can do is to
try as hard as you can not to make
the same mistake again
try as hard as you can next time around to
not do so much harm
and if you can’t do that then you’ve got to make sure that
there is no next time
because what’s done is done and some things
there’s no fixing
not even close
but maybe the one way to bring some good out of it
and keep in mind this can take a very long time
is to reflect
and regret
and thereby try really goddamn hard to make sure that next time around
you aren’t such an irredeemable son of a bitch.

Lazarus Sort Of Story Maybe Except I’m Decidedly No Saint

I don’t think about it much anymore
which is probably a healthy thing
nice day though it was
clear day, air crisp, chilly
and I probably shouldn’t even put my name on this because
a lot of people just don’t understand
they can’t
I envy them a little for that
the road to the lake was clothed with dead leaves
I walked there
not far
as fine a fall day as any no doubt
and for a fact the water was freezing
even after a fifth of scotch it surprised me just how cold
cold enough I was pretty certain
cold enough I hoped
cold enough
and indeed it probably was
I don’t remember much from then on
on account of I lost consciousness
til I was in the ambulance
then I sort of half regained it
which ambulance arrived timely like
otherwise I don’t think you’d be reading this poem
or any poem by me for that matter
my recall here is pretty hazy
consider after all the fifth of scotch
a seventeen year old can’t usually really have tolerance enough to manage that
turns out a woman walking her dog past the lake made the call
and happily for me
I didn’t die
but in some strange way I think I was born and
baptized in that frigid water
I believe that day
for the first time
I learned something about myself
and I do believe
five years eleven months and
twenty seven days ago
for the first time in my life
I lived

I’m glad for that
that I lived

and if I’m some kind of a shitty drunken Lazarus
and the paramedics are Jesus Christ
then I still owe him $562
and I’m not gonna pay him.

On Memory

Occurred to me the day before yesterday
all the clever things I’ve ever said
all the things I’ve said that made me feel clever
made me feel smart, made me feel good
made me feel a little happy or a little satisfied for
a little while at least
I can’t remember
not one of them
but every single stupid remark I’ve ever made
that made me wish almost even before I’d said anything that
I could just right then sink into the soil and cease to exist
those things
episodic
perfect fucking recall
and not just that
I don’t even have to recall them at all
they come back to me with great frequency all on their own
and this is pretty banal as far as revelations go
probably everyone has the same problem
but since I’ve only ever been but one person
I don’t know what other people feel
but for me I have to think this speaks to
the way my brain must prioritize
making me feel like shit over not making me feel like shit
after all, if memorability is a measure of emotional power
which I figure it must be one, if not the best one, if not the only one
then seems like shame and regret rate a good bit higher
on my recollective register
than just about anything good
which sounds about right

this realization in that moment made me feel pretty smart
pretty good about myself
pretty clever
so I figured I’d better write it down or surely
I’d forget it entirely.

Pictures Of Paintings

I am the petty god of my
particular lacking happiness, apathy
all the nice words I can use to
dress up pretty much nothing
I can hear them echo but the words don’t echo it’s sad
I think it’s sad how there was only ever but one way
and I guess we’re all just postponing it as long as we can
least if we’re lucky we are ourselves postponing
least if we’re real lucky it’s been decided by
someone else or something
or it’s just decided to remain undecided
it doesn’t matter what which way and we
step onstage to dress it up in colorful words maybe because
it makes us feel a little less awful
since it isn’t pretty or picturesque any more than is the
buckshot-interrupted aggregate grey matter spent
of artists failed and not, vexed to senseless lurid portrait painting
instant printed Jackson Pollock spray of crimson plasma
sulfur scented, boards behind the means congealed as time befits
photos lit in frame fluorescent greyscale selling papers
editors’ captions, name worth recognizance says someone
suicide says someone, maybe sadder than anything maybe
thereby might could coronate, apotheosize
a handful of willfully dead men
but that’s a lie because it doesn’t, not that
never that
but then again even god might paint the drywall with both barrels if he could
after all if I were him I would.