The Anatomy of a 32-Year-Old Man

What arms are these
that I have found
set gently against the
ground?

They fit just fine
and within them
is a sense of something
new.

An eastern wind
blows in
as I pluck an apple
from the tree
that I grew beside.

These arms change
in an intimate set
of seasons.

These arms
that wish to be wings
and thus move
to become them.

Flower petals fall
all around me.

I do not flinch
at death

nor do I
make myself big
in the face of its
bear.

I cup my new hands
at the end of these new arms
and pray for rain
that pools like fire.

I pray to gods
that look at me
evenly
from the other side
of a healing Earth.


every year on my birthday i write a birthday poem. “the anatomy of a ___ year old man.” thank you for reading.

Image: Joe Pilié

Thought For Food | Submit to South Broadway Press’ First Poetry Anthology

I’ve been sitting on this new project, South Broadway Press, for a while now and as of late, some members of the team and myself decided we want to put together a poetry anthology to raise funds for a local non-profit, Denver Food Rescue.

TFF Banner

Here is the details which you can also find on the South Broadway Ghost Society site:

In these times of COVID-19 and social isolation, many people are out of work and lacking the resources necessary to even feed themselves.

South Broadway Press, the parent LLC of South Broadway Ghost Society, would like to help suppport local non-profit Denver Food Rescue by raising funds through an anthology of poetry entitled “Thought For Food”.

Denver Food Rescue

What Denver Food Rescue does:

We increase health equity with Denver neighborhoods by rescuing high-quality, fresh produce and perishable foods that would otherwise be thrown away by grocery stores, farmers markets, and produce distributors. With the help of our amazing volunteers, the food we rescue is delivered (often biked!) to Denver neighborhoods for direct distribution at No Cost Grocery Programs (NCGPs).  NCGPs are co-created with existing community organizations like schools, recreation centers, and nonprofits that are already established and trusted within the neighborhood, decreasing transportation barriers. Residents of the NCGP community lead the distribution of rescued food, and many also help with food rescue shifts. This participation decreases stigma of traditional food pantries, empowering each neighborhood to create a program that is appropriate for their culture & community.

“Food For Thought” will be an anthology featuring a single poem by each selected contributor. Copies of “Thought For Food” will be available to contributors for $6. They will sell to other folks for $15 each.

Poems can be on any theme. If you’d like to be prompted, consider writing on the theme of food, or on life in the face of a pandemic.

“Thought For Food” marks South Broadway Press’ first release.

Submissions for this project will close on May 11th of 2020.

We will accept previously published materials.

If you would like to submit please send an email to submissions@soboghoso.org with the following information:

Subject: THOUGHT FOR FOOD

  1. Your name.
  2. A brief 100-word-or-less bio.
  3. Up to three poems as a Word document or a Google Doc. We are not paying contributors for this project, but contributor copies will be available at a discounted rate of $6 each.

Please email us at submissions@soboghoso.org with any questions.

shallow focus photo of sliced orange fruits
Photo: Kristof Zerbe

Cover Photo: Nordwood Themes

Head Room Sessions: Love Poem for Everything

I recently recorded my poem “Love Poem For Everything” through Head Room Sessions. Thank you to the always-wonderful Von Disco for accompanying me on this track.  This poem is from my second collection of poetry, Hero Victim Villain.

Cover Photo: Mana5280

Punketry the Album: Oppenheimer

This winter, I was a part of Black Market Translations recording session Punketry the Album, based on the event of the same name. Punketry is a monthly Denver showcase of poets reading over punk music. My first track that came out of the session is called “Oppenheimer” after Robert Oppenheimer, who was involved in the creation of the atomic bomb, and famous quoted the Bhagavad Gita upon its completion saying “I am become death, destroyer of worlds…”

How to Read My Poems

slink up
behind them
in the stale of
night
with a baseball bat
with nails
sticking out of the end
and bash them in the
head
like a zombie
terrorizing your childhood
home.

do not listen
to their
bullshit.

bitch back.

stomp
on their
toes.

poison
their drinking
water.

let the fucking
curse words shout
at their
stupid
fucking
faces like
unintentional spitwads

but don’t
talk
behind their backs.

my poems
keep their friends close,
but their enemies
even
closer.

(C) Brice Maiurro 2012

Cover art: John Jennings

Strange Yet Important Times

You really don’t understand who you are until something is taken away from you, and I have to say, over the last few weeks, as I’ve watched my event calendar open up more and more, I’ve really begun to see what makes up the fabric of my life, and how I’ve built my therapy into my daily life.

It’s nothing new to me to understand that poetry has saved my life, time and time again, but as I’ve lost direct contact with so many friends and loved ones, so many open mic nights and community dialogues on social justice or anything really, the one thing I’ve found taking the place of that time is writing, and really poetry.

I’m cut from a different cloth then a lot of other folks. I spend a large amount of time in general just trying to understand myself. I struggle sometimes to want to socialize, probably something of an imposter syndrome, as I can’t stand the idea of acting, or of being insincere. At times, this leaves me in silence, not talking, and sometimes it leaves me feeling lonely.

This is in direct contrast with my love of people. One spring, while I was in college, I had some extra money and two weeks to kill so I took off on the road to Las Vegas. Along the way, I discovered Moab, Utah, a place that has become incredibly important to me, and eventually I arrived in Vegas. I quickly learned that it wasn’t the places that were important to me, it’s the people. It’s the experience of sharing things with people. I came to have a newfound appreciation for Anthony Bourdain, and the ideology he carried in how he traveled – find the local spots with the local people, and talk to them. The way I saw it, he had the dream job, so it was hard on me, as well as many other people, when this man I saw as someone living his truth, living his best life, took that life from himself.

As so many elements of my life have been stripped away, I’ve been feeling incredibly vulnerable, as if someone removed all of the doors to my house, and I am unable to keep the wind or strange creatures from wandering right in. I find myself feeling incredibly existential. I’ve been going to work each day to a pulmonary clinic with very few patients. As I walked down the hall today, I began to have tunnel vision and found myself wondering if I exist at all. I went to the grocery store to get lunch and the few people there seemed like set pieces, like extras on the set, coached not to make eye contact.

This all is so incredibly lonely, and strange, and it has heavily reminded me that when I walk down an asphalt road, that road is an invention. That is something that someone decided should happen. Synthesis places on top of a patch of grass. The building I write this in wasn’t always here. Obviously, this all leads to the poetry.

As I’m figuring new things out about myself, one thing seems to be a key element of who I am; dark times might be difficult for me, as for anyone, but that is where I grow best. It is the void that makes me an optimist. It is hopelessness where the poetry comes around and acts as a vessel for me to travel through to tirelessly seek hope.

When people ask me on New Year’s Eve if I had a good year, I always tell them: I always either have a good year or an important year. I don’t know if things are good right now, but I definitely believe they are important.

I hope you all find optimism, hope and poetry in this strange time.

Much love.


Brice Maiurro is a poet and storyteller in Denver, Colorado.

Poetry EP Release: Everything is on Fire

Last fall, I had the distinct pleasure of heading to the studio of the one and only Chadzilla Johnson, where we took a few of my favorite poems from my new collection, Hero Victim Villain and recorded them, with Chadzilla accompanying me on drums with a couple appearances of other instruments. As of yesterday, those recordings have come together as an EP called “Everything is on Fire.”

I hope you’ll take a minute and listen to these tracks. One of my favorite ways to perform is accompanied by this amazing drummer and music teacher.

the anatomy of a 31-year-old man

it’s the bones that i’m thinking about. the frame. that which goes unspoken for but consistently holds me up. there is a stream that runs through green hills beneath a harsh sun. the grass has barely started to brown, to burn. and at the far edges of this still life is a frame that holds together like a family. there is a nail that trusts the wall. a wall that trusts the floors, the ceiling. light shines in through windows. i step, lifting a congregation of bone and marrow by muscle, over and again, in ten million years of motion leading to one moment where i look outside the window. my neck twisted upward to the golden sky i look for any trace of saturn and i think to myself where is it? and i answer back to myself it’s gone.

 

every year on my birthday i write a birthday poem. “the anatomy of a ___ year old man.” thank you for reading.

Hero Victim Villain – Book Release

hero victim villain

EVERYTHING IS ON FIRE AND I WANT TO SLEEP FOR AT LEAST TWO WEEKS.

I’m excited to say my second collection of poetry, Hero Victim Villain, will be released on June 24th from Stubborn Mule Press.

This collection is mostly an accumulation of poems that I wrote late 2017 to early 2019. The first poem in the collection, The Canary Who Swallowed The Coal Minekind of set the tone. I say in the poem “everything is on fire, and I want to sleep for at least two weeks.” The poem goes on to basically explain how everything is on fire, a commentary on my own anxieties and paranoia and feelings of helplessness, the way I can play the victim at times.

My friend Brandon Pooley calls it the poet’s disease. The way that some creatives will be self-destructive ultimately in the name of art. Something I want to get away from. I think that art is born out of self-discovery. Yeah, if you’re going through some hard shit you are possibly growing as a person, but it doesn’t have to be hard shit. Go on a trip, walk backwards to the grocery store, change jobs. I think what’s better than drinking yourself into a coma every night is pushing yourself out of your comfort zone by pushing yourself to be more. Henry Rollins says it well:

“If you hate your parents, the man or the establishment, don’t show them up by getting wasted and wrapping your car around a tree. If you really want to rebel against your parents, out-learn them, outlive them, and know more than they do.”

The book goes on to explore these themes more. Savior complexes, the monsters we are and the monsters among us, all with a healthy dose of humor. I’m really excited about this collection. I hope to stop by the blog a bit more over the next couple months with more short writings, but thank you for reading. I hope that not everything is on fire for you.


photo: henry desroches