Andrew K. Peterson

The Big Game Is Every Night
 i.m. Jason Molina

being young enough to know
enough    not to keep reburning
the Civil War, should i give up
on giving into disbelief? maybe
stop letting chains binge
on charms of my lover’s mouth?
in a pink pink pink
punk swoon   love adjusts
its difficulties, readjusts
its power as you can
make a mirror warm
as you fall back into your
love of one more thing
as vulnerable clarity      

through their going  
some return to you  
through the impact
of needing, being
kneaded through
alms that steady
the blush, to skim
the lake for good vibrations  
small and unhidden –
slow going, but it is going   

Resistance –
it’s a big game
& the big game
is every night,
a mountainous rose
swells of diamond surfers,
dub sparks
on the moon’s hood,
glittery wolf
at the brim of her kind

Year in Streaming

hands as full and in-
complete      as dancers
denying the inaugural
summering down
clovered in rosemary

could i burn through      
waxing    rainbow moonstone
in a spiral,    crocodile
the child & siren align    
wave by wave 

but at what difference
and roses. allllll day.
“will you stop suffering
like, a minute?”   

breaking  into the river    
for everything at once
is stone ground down to powder
thrown, a tumbler brought closer
through all you’ve never had:

to teach myself to rest is
not to squander, 
to quarantine  is linening this madness 
lighter off as sun hit

gonging to ask by swan-
swank humming 
back when we were still
planets to a plum,
an anxious fissure casque

Poem on Ted Berrigan’s Birthday Placed in an Old Pair of New Balance Sneakers and Left on the Stoop at New Balance Factory Outlet Store Brighton Massachusetts

my name is [your name] and I am your constituent – 
The shoes of the fisherman are some
jive-ass slippers.
The shoes of the fisherman’s wife are
The shoes of the fisherman’s ex-wife
are some hive-mass
      trip-ass tippers.

With the city with the country
and its daddy issues
Not even the angels
want to wear

my red shoes                                                                                 
from the overflowing
brim of a high-
mind american moral

bargain bin
I’ve walked too far with
ghosts of old balance – 
its stultifying molds

it’s been hard doing anything
lately with a dream of keeping it
together, tender not fragile,
          a childhood speaks to
its riot,
fear, taken out of
context, fails both sides
of the divide,

that which is made to
laugh behind,
return in, from
worn down heals
to emptied out busking
anger, past
trips i hung up on

pleas of displacement after the block fire
pleas for an end to being a bystander
please for being “the literary one”
at the office, tasked
to explain the difference
Roman vs Greek tragedy
(this one being
           neither –

there there there          empty stand me here,
here here here              & we aren’t going anywhere

being neither
                     violet thrush,
nor sunburst
                   as Shoeless Joe
til the end of the anthem,

before a game that’s already begun


Wrong Shirt
Before a big production meeting some businessmen, presenters and clients alike, gather in the public restroom, primping and adjusting, rehearsing phrases in the 
mirror like so many hot-air hand-dryers. Some invisible Pan removes their shirts and flings them in a cottony mountain on the restroom floor. The men, now each stripped 
of their carefully shaped professional identity, desperately sift through the pile of shirts for their own; however, the relative similarities in the cuts, sizes, and colors result 
in various mistaken identities. A few discombobulating false starts result in discomfits from a too tight color, a too long sleeve, an errant pattern, an unfamiliar stripe. 
Despite frantic obfuscations, the men collectively pull together. By the time of the meeting, any attempts to impress the potential client, or intimidate with hard-lined 
negotiation tactics, proves ineffective, as each man from the bathroom looks around the table, out-of-breath, face discolored, silently terrified that at some critical 
negotiation point, they may be exposed by a savvier, more opportunistic man at the same table, who might break their silent pact – though troubling the line, if one were 
to be exposed, the whole outfit would be implicated – that every one of them at the table was wearing the wrong shirt…

High Contrast
After Gabor Szabo

(           1)    Breezin’
          (after Grenier)

          wind as slight a yellow
          butterfly      above her
          “we alter things
                      we haven’t made ourselves”

(          2)    Amazon

                      “can you stop suffering
                      for, like, a minute?”    
          the consensus is / an engine
          is dumber than a gun      & that’s hard.
          What’s “move forward”? Anything can
          call an apse an apse.
          What’s that BOOMING out there?
          What’s “an economy”?
          Grease the rose of reason?

(         3)    Fingers

         an out-of-range-
         sculpting with color
         the sites
         of former theatres
         to project
           all forgotten loves
         on the scrim of
         your closed eyes.
         Hold on
         to what you have –
         so little.

(        (4)    Azure Blue

        If a flag to fault
        giving Saints
        the choice
        to stand for
        or not

        “attention now
        wistfully drifting
        into distance”              (Sotere Torregian)

   (5) Just a Little Communication

 brah yelling
 from the blue of
 his passenger side

 at the bus stop queue
 not. sure. do you
 think he means
 his privilege

 like a tooth that glistens
 whistles, as
 it loosens, falling

 back from the top of the order  

   (6) If You Don’t Want My Love

 while bootlegging
 The World Series
 search results for
 “how do you say
 ‘how do you say’
 in French”
 returns: translated
 slang for French Kissing
 as “to roll a shovel”
 & i can dig it
 comment dites-vous
 “racist Indians cap” ?
 Final Score:
 Bad Guys 1,
 Good Guys
 aren’t keeping score

  (7) I Remember When

 I remember when this place used to be a City Sports.
 I remember when this place used to be a Strawberries.
 I remember when this place used to be The Globe Corner.
 I remember when this place used to be a Hilltop.

 There, no longer
 Here, & ever
 More, the body
 Passes by. King
 The mind with
 Witch Hazel.
 Money Tree.
 Pink & green &
 How to dance
 An avalanche.
 Peace Lily.