Rich Ferguson
October 2019

Pushcart-nominated poet Rich Ferguson has shared the stage with Patti Smith, Wanda Coleman, Moby, and other esteemed poets and musicians. He is a featured performer in the film, What About Me? featuring Michael Stipe, Michael Franti, k.d. lang, and others. His poetry and award-winning spoken-word music videos have been widely anthologized, and he was a winner in Opium Magazine’s Literary Death Match, LA. His poetry collection, 8th & Agony, is out on Punk Hostage Press, and his debut novel, New Jersey Me, has been released by Rare Bird Books.



Sometimes the moon

braids ocean tides

into the hair
Mother Nature wears.

Sometimes joy burns wilder and brighter
than Hendrix’s torched guitar.

Sometimes loneliness speaks
in a language

of leaving trains.

Sometimes our inner child
crank calls our consciousness.

Sometimes happiness is a warm gun
that’s been melted

into a paperweight.

Sometimes the stairway to heaven

is closed for repair;

sometimes the highway to hell is gridlocked;

sometimes that means

I’m stuck in the middle with you.


Sometimes in moments of desperation,

we feed our sanity to the wolves.


Sometimes blue can

resemble the color of the sky.


At other times, the color of bruises.


Dustballs want to be bullet trains.

Bullet trains want to be snails.

Snails want to be crows.

Crows want to be Beethoven’s Fifth.

Beethoven’s Fifth wants to be a fifth of gin.

A fifth of gin wants to be holy water.

Holy water wants to be mud puddles.

Mud puddles want to be rainbows.

Rainbows want to be nooses.

Nooses want to be church bells.

Church bells want to be bongs.

Bongs want to be butterflies.

Butterflies want to be buffalo stampedes.

Buffalo stampedes want to be angels dancing on the head

   of a pin.

Angels dancing on the head of a pin want to be solar

   systems swirling.

Solar systems swirling want to be sandboxes.
Sandboxes want to be mountains.
Mountains want to be ladybugs.

Ladybugs want to be wolves.

Wolves want to be radios.

Radios want to be moments of silence.

Moments of silence want to be lightning and thunder.

Lightning and thunder want to be serial killers.

Serial killers want to be reborn into baby Buddhas.

Baby Buddhas want to grow up to be electric guitars.

Electric guitars want to be junkyard dogs.

Junkyard dogs want to be anything but a cat.

A cat wants to be a Cadillac.

A Cadillac wants to be a garbage truck.

A garbage truck wants to be a wet dream.

A wet dream wants to be heaven.

Heaven wants to be a dive bar.

A dive bar wants to be diamonds.

Diamonds want to be handfuls of dirt.

Handfuls of dirt want to be thrown into graves.

Graves want to be winds.

Winds want to be human.

And humans are forever wanting
to be
at once.

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