Guy de Maupassant was right

On days like this
Feeling like
like I'm just waiting -
waiting for the end
The mirror shows the years
A mirror does not lie.
Hair thin
Face more wrinkles
less smiles
growing grey, a curse
The chronological years' cold reality
of a shorter future
a lack of ambition
and youth's confidence
and courage all but gone
And love ...
What about love?
Love - no longer youth's curiosity
and lust
What Guy de Maupassant wrote was true
"Oh what torments
a man who has loved
and lost."


The first real kiss is the one by which you measure all others. Anthony Hopkins in Hearts in Atlantis told me that. I only saw half The Human Stain so I’m not sure if there is any advice for me in that. I fold out the laminated intersection of coloured streets. I want to meander. Wander. But I am tired. Just like you knew I’d be. My hand-drawn map from the Japanese New Yorker isn’t as simple as he implied. Or maybe it is. Maybe I am the one complicating things. After all Kabukicho is just a yellow sign with an arrow pointing up the stairs. I should have had more ice cream on the Narita Express. There are vending machines everywhere but I don’t have change. You should have come with me. You should have held my hand the whole way. You should have fallen in love with me. Not the union. Or Liberty. Or the American way. I like it when you kiss my neck and leave your tiger-stripe mark. Paw me. Poor me. I still think there’s hope. I still think that you want to show me Central Park when it snows. I still think this is heading somewhere. And somewhere you are laughing. Silently applauding my ignorance. Praying I stay on my knees and don’t expect anything for a while to come. For as long as it takes to get me out of your system. But you didn’t count on my mouth. And my big breasts. And my pretty arse. It will take longer than you thought.

Where Da Plane?

911 never happened
Down to tracksuited reptiles, aqua marine
Shot to the top of the charts
Kings of the food chain
Just ask Mr David
It never happened
CGI arrows piercing pylons and the wispy skies
Watch the news
Brain washing for ones muddied with cobwebs
Those bastard reptiles
Some call it the truth
Some call it a steaming pile
Over a Leo and fried rice with prawns
It made sense for a while
Frozen camera frames
Smoke spirals in the final fifth
No plane
A manifest, epic in all ways
Pick out the bones and spit them into the ashtray
A glass of lukewarm water and a dash of fluoride for the Irish play writers
A non-plussed shower of academics, poets and mirth makers
No fakers in this town, no more 70’s jokes.
This bloke’s onto something
Green grass entourage with so much to say
A grandiose chef, ready to pay
Beer froth and no more games left to play
911 never happened anyway
Just flying black roaches
Chomping through butter

That's all

It's a rocky road
It's a long row to hoe
It's a lonely walk alone
It's looking for home

And it's always being in the dark
Oh yeh, you would think
I would have learned by now

It's a mountain to climb
but it's a slippery slope
And you are always dangling -
dangling at the end of a rope.
Someday you are going to break -
break in your neck
break in two

It's a short trip
It's a short trip
so you had better
so you had better
make it good

It's irreparable damage
Oh, such beautiful calamity
No silver lining
just 256 shades of gray.
that's all
all I can say
that's all
I know

High heel thriller

Pointy toes
crammed in
like captive tiny sardines
stiletto heels
45-degree nail platforms
discomfort isn't ever really shared
is it?

Instead my eyes glued
fixated on smooth silky nylons
sliding over bony ankles
and over delicate calves
to bent knees
below hemline thighs
raising up
to the point of imagination
how can anything else be
so beautiful?

Basho Lost - A Nonzen Poem

Trees black
Against the darkness of night
Can you hear the song of crickets?
Can you see the dance of fireflies in flight?
The stars
The moon
Its reflection in a black pond
Am I suddenly awakened by the splash of Basho's frog?
I'm not.
Back then Basho couldn't help but hear
Back then there were no competing sounds to steal one's attention
No cars navigating in the dark
No street lights to destroy the night
Back then -
Nothing to disturb
What would have been
A perfect night.

Life Deals A Cruel Card

Rainbow on the pitch-dark horizon
Pool table with a certain sex appeal
Names on the blackboard
From Ahmed to Zachariah
Feel no time for negatives
Band next door belt out ear soothers
The movers and shakers come across as people
Schedule brimming with an optimistic brew
Large, cold and advertisement ready
Steady hand and down goes a red stripe
This is life
This is life

Dead and burnt

Saw a body burning, on the bank of a Nepalese river
Those guys know how they feel about death
Saw a dolls face in a coffin, "she looks like she's asleep"
Avoiding the issue in Chicago, that one is dead, deal with it.
Laughable tears in a pet cemetery, oh dear, Butch is dead
He should have learned that cars hurt, dumb dog.
Goldfish flushed to the eternal blue water beyond
Faeces and piss, the winged angel turds keep it company
My old tortoise speedy now helps my cancerous spin
He has been a much more faithful ashtray than he ever was a pet
Hamburgers ain't dead and bacon never oinked and squealed
It's all born sello-wrapped and half cooked, price tag on it's arse
"how are you Adam, with the loss of Uncle Arthur?"
"He's dead, not lost" was not the answer they were after
I am not desirous of death, not for me, mine or indeed most folks
But I'll not ignore it's reality, not for a second, life is nothing
Unless you recognize that it is without question going to stop.
We are all just sentences and each one has a fullstop
I hope mine has not too many commas, they're too much like heart attacks.

The Smilers

The smilers, you know them, glowing teeth, permanent muscle relaxant
Shades of reality never impinge upon their sugar coated pinkness
They'll all go to heaven, so they believe, vanishing smiles as only dark earth greets
Despair has a place in this smiley land, smiles lose value if not balanced against hurt
And the world is not round! It is a bumpy spheroid dear smilers! Bumps are needed
On roads, on women, in life! The way is not grinningly flat and uniform!
Uniformity of smileyness is a lie, a self lie, mirrors grinning back, laughing most probably
The behind the mirror dimension people weep with insane laughs at your smiley falseness
Those smiles are not happiness! They're cosmetic, "roll up, new smiles from Chanel"
Preach honesty, cry at the homeless, but keep that smile at the front of the queue!
"Meek beggars to inherit the earth" the daily smiler newspaper smirks
So smile at the poor, the crippled, the disenchanted and the weak outsider mass
Theres's nothing to worry about, the earth's got millions of years left and God will stop the sun eating us
Your picnic baskets could be full of maggots and pus, yet still you'd find something to split your lying lips upwards
No novels on your shelves, only bibles and encyclopedias on faith and self help
But don't buy that Deepak Chopra guy, heathen, infidel, I'm not racist I had a Bob Marley record at college
Smile on, smile on, I hope your teeth rot and resemble a bolivian graveyard
Maybe then you'd stop your useless fucking grins, stop your eternal niceness
Stop being a lighter shade of dullness and move between black, grey and red like the rest.

Again in two

feels like
I've been down
Down this road before
The same scenery on all sides
And all the same warning signs
She said she would always be there
She said she would never go away. . .
Yeh, I've been down I've been down this road before

And I've got to say, I've had my fill of yesterdays
Fuzzy memories to cloud my today
And excuses to trip up my brain
I've got nothing against history
Because it is useful to know
To know where you've been
So the same heartbreak
Doesn't happen
To you

Definition of Disappointment

It's your choice in a fancy restaurant
that looks just great on the menu
but you realize after the first bite
the taste is entirely flat

It's spending a long time waiting in line
and finally when you get to the front
believing it's your turn
the window closes
right when you get there.

It's just a "missed appointment"--
a promise
by someone or
with something
that hasn't been kept.

It's when you are expecting
a kiss --
a kiss on the lips
but you get a friendly handshake

Patience (Haiku)


I will wait for you
here beneath these branches
while watching petals fall.

Why (Trayvon Martin)

I've got my hoodie on--
It's cold and dark, and it's pissin' rain
Don't blame me for the weather
Don't blame me because it's night

I've got my hoodie on --
I've got my sneakers and sweatpants on too
The gray hood pulled over my head to keep me warm,
to protect me from the cold.
Don't blame me for the clothes I wear.

I've got my hoodie on--
You can't tell if I'm black or white
Why do I look like some kind of thief?
Don't blame me because when I was born,
I couldn't choose the color of my skin.

I've got my hoodie on--
And I belong here, just as much as you
My Right to resist.
Your "Right" to carry a gun.
Everyone is afraid. Why?

The shooting of Trayvon Martin took place on February 26, 2012, in Sanford, Florida. Trayvon Martin was an unarmed, 17-year-old African American male who was shot and killed by George Zimmerman, a 28-year-old Hispanic community watch coordinator.


I love Candy
Because she is so sweet
she dissolves in my mouth
so complete
Sometimes I call her Sugar
Sometimes I call her Bit- O-Honey
When we are alone
hold her like an M&M
Who says she doesn't melt in my hand?
Giving her many Hersey kisses
sucking on her shapes
licking her like a lolly pop
tasting her flavors
I love candy
soft nougat
chewy caramel
White, milk or dark chocolate
You see, I don't discriminate based on color
it's all about the ingredients inside
She's my Sugar Baby
my Baby Ruth
my Mounds bar
my Almond Joy
Sometimes she feels like a nut inside
sometimes not
I don't mind
Sometimes I just love to find the surprise --
the surprise of what she is really like inside
Bring a friend
we can play 3 Musketeers
whipped chocolate-on-chocolate
I love candy
sometimes she's a Whitman's sampler
when she's looking all dolled up
All neat in that pretty box
tied up in a red bow
wrapped like a present
about to give herself to me
And I'm in awe
drooling like a kid
I love candy
What sweetness will she have for me today?
Knowing I'm saving the covered cherry
for last.

Time Will Tell - An Atheist's Lament

And it's been said that after you die,
you go to the place where you where before you were born.
But this is not a particular soothing thought to me.
As I can't remember that long ago - the time before I was born
I can hardly remember --
Heck, I can hardly remember what I did last week.

Because then again, there is the story of heaven and hell
Neither provides a logical answer to the mystery of death to me
I mean how hot--
how hot can hell be?
Heaven on the other hand...
On the surface, heaven does sound like a pretty dreamy place
looking down at you all.
But what happens if I want to look up an old friend?
What address would I give with everyone living on Paradise Street
What activities are there to do at night?
Suppose there is only one kind of beer on tap?
And are we all supposed to sit around and sing hymns about Him?
After a while, if we didn't question it
heaven would just be a nightmare...
but one for all eternity

Reincarnation is yet another theory
It sounds spiritual and all
that we all come back again.
My luck I'll back as a dodo bird, or something worse.
perhaps starting out as some tiny one cell organism
and having work my way up the food chain
living, suffering, dying
living, suffering, dying
living, suffering, dying
over and over again--
over and over again for a thousand years.
Finally becoming a boy again
only to get killed in one of those silly-ass wars of yours.

What will sex be like in the year 3000?
Will we continue to fuck and multiply or do it some other way
to keep our species going
or will we becoming extinct?
We don't know the future--
what science has in store for the living at the time.
Time will tell
because I can't.

The Book Launch Party for River Road - Hillel Wright

Dear Friends & Colleagues,
The Book Launch Party for River Road, the sequel to Border Town will be a Sunday Brunch at the Pink Cow ("" in Shibuya, Tokyo on Sunday, April 8 from 12 Noon to 4:00 PM. The admission is 3500Yen and includes the full Brunch Buffet + a signed (if desired) copy of River Road.

Border Town (2006) told the story of fictional manga artist Fumie Akahoshi who becomes rich & famous in Japan. In an act of hubris she creates a manga which implicates the Emperor in the WWII “comfort women” scandal. As a result, the Right Wingers hire the Yakuza to assassinate her. At the end of the novel she has disappeared.

River Road tells the story of Fumie’s abandoned daughter Angelica Akahoshi who becomes a famous graphic novelist at a remarkably young age. In her 20s she begins a world-wide search for her lost mother who she strongly believes is still alive. A short, cryptic telepathic message from Fumie spurs her on, following story clues along the “river road”.

Readings will begin at 1:00 PM. Guest readers include Alan Botsford, Frank Spignese, Hans Brinckmann, Jeremiah Dutch, John Gribble, Wally Gagne, Wayne Pounds and Yuri Kageyama. Taylor Mignon will MC. An open mike will begin at 3:00 PM as time allows.

Please RSVP / ASAP so the Pink Cow staff will know how much food to prepare. Feel free to post on Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. and to invite your friends and colleagues. Looking forward to seeing you on April 8

Best wishes,
Hillel Wright

Oh those holes

I get it, be what you say, say what you mean
write what you feel think see
Do not spout from the mouth of the history of others
Unknown, Untouched
Singing songs unowned, overgrown, words thrown, wanton
I am the words, fight me, bite me excite me
Or fuck off, impolitely, to a space you never fucking own
And breathe words not your own and hope someone turns the sun on
Because you do nothing valuable, nor invaluable
Priceless in your pointlessness
Pricking the conscience instead of consigning the pricks
To a hell they deserve, full of their own voices
Jabbering, selfish, stupid fucking shellfish of an existence.

One year after (Japan Earthquake Mar. 11, 2011)

One week.
Everything happened in one week.
And, nothing...
nothing happened in one week.
Thousands died
Even more cried.
People ran their lives.
One week flew by so fast,
I hardly recall what I did,
but watch the tv in disbelief.
Life goes on
One year later,
Selfishly, my anxiety has all but vanished
But when the earth shakes, I recall Mar. 11
and for a second or two
reflect on my own mortality
One year later,
two minutes of silence is all they get.
Life goes on.


It's a cold, cold world
You don't think so?
I tell you, it's a cold world
especially -- especially when it snows.
I could write about how each flake falls silently into its rightful place.
O me, O Life, what a white peaceful blanket thou make
But does it keep me warm?
Hell no!
Each of us are in the middle of a storm
what philosophers and poets call "Life."
And this storm rages from morning to night
The human predicament that gives assholes like me something to write
Oh, the pain
This cold cruel world invades my brain
a razor's edge
Cliché sharp, and shit like that.
Why be optimistic?
After all, we're all gonna die someday.
blah, blah blah
It's far easier to write a pessimistic poem anyway.
So, I should change my tune
and write about this wondrous blue Earth of ours?
Azure sky,
Billowy clouds,
Vast oceans,
Sandy beaches
Majestic mountains,
Resilient trees,
Roaring rivers,
Babbling brooks,
Birds and bees
but I always forget to add mankind in natural landscapes like these
(I wonder why.)
How about if I write a love poem?
I'll be cupid playing the harp
words tugging at the heartstrings
making the girls weak in the knees
How can I fuck thee?
Let me count the ways
Well here's a start: the original Kama Sutra illustrates 64
though I can watch porn on the internet and discover a whole lot more
So, I just want to say that words--
words don't mean shit
It's how you feel inside.
Either be the poem or
you are just sounding off
that noisy piehole of yours.

Palaces of the new paradigm

I'm an anachronism, out of time, out of place
Out of mind, out of the game and out of space
and yet the old hunger is still there, in the gut
in the soul, in the sinews and down in the mud
being in the gutter, blasted, dirty is good enough for me
you can keep your gutter seen stars Oscar, I like dirty
The clouds keeping pace with the wind, no control there
Still bet their cloudy egos let them believe all's fair
and that they are choosing there own directions cleverly
and that as they fly by a distant cumulus pal it's not serendipity
But their home made, rainless, blue sky destiny.
Well, sorry to say you cloudy freaks
You filled with self belief, formless geeks
That it's all out of control
wake up and fly agianst the wind.

Recalling an old flame

My old flame
how it used to burn bright
at least that's how
I remember it.
My old flame
doesn't burn as bright.
and that's what they call
Now in the morning mirror
I can hardly recognize
I don't want to count--
count the wrinkles
on my face
And I don't want to count
the missteps
I took along the way
I recall when my old flame used to...
oh yeh,
she used to...
well, you know.

I will spread you


I peer down
Smiling at the sight of your open jar
All wet and sticky inside
Waiting to be eaten
golden brown delight
You look to good to be true
My mouth waters
I smack my lips
I'm so hungry for you

Now that I have you in my palm
Soft bread
And exposed
To eat you. I don't need a knife
or a spoon
no jams and jellies
but I just want to stick my tongue in there
and scoop out some of you.
I have to have you

I will grind you - slowly
You see, common everyday fakes like Jif just ain't my style
Whether you are creamy or chunky,
And indeed Skippy spreads easy
But I read the label carefully
full of fructose and sodium
And stuff I don't understand
I want the real deal
I want the 100 percent organic nuts
I say, if you got it, then spread it, baby
I want you-- I want you like
I want an open peanut butter sandwich
on whole wheat bread and a glass of cold milk
You taste like heaven.


You feed me schezuan chicken.
Your chopsticks resting on my tongue.
It’s going to be a good year.

Oh the words

Chinese new year, beckoning the other side of a heavy weekend
I hear a man, talking of his mistress..."like an axe wound in a poodle"
He obviously loves her and her somewhat canine nether regions
The joys of alcohol with the tatste of ether, chinese white spirit breath
And the bells rang in some temple, the neighbours complain, deaf gods
Sweet pork, signs reading "this is pork" so non-pork eaters don't err and scoff heretically
I'll happily head to hell, bacon sandwich in one hand, inverted cross in the other
And the guys in the bar next door try and convince locals to blow them
The locals try and convince the lads they are real and human
The huge scaly dragon image stares down, uncaring, spitting water not fire
The lamps glow, cheaply, make-up shines and erections die as the booze drowns eros completely
Brand new shiny chariot cars roll on, drunken drivers looking for dead kids
The hookers stare everyone down with "go on, fuck me then" eyes, mascara blurred
The bells ring some more, like an old headmasters voice, deep, hollow and annoying
"I'll have the same again" someone says to a hooker, no gins, no grins, just business
My guinness is flat, my legs ache and it's a no smoking bar, so I head outside to watch the dragon dance.

Falling Moon, broken hearts

She always cried at the moon, it looked so lonely
She was caring like that, she hated to see even a single lost shoe
Everything should be in pairs, but the moon stood tearful, alone
She loved the moon dearly, she knew it loved her too
Silvered beams would caress her through her cracked leaded window
She'd turn her pillow over, cold side up, a pretend moon to rest on
To talk to, to cuddle the absolute loneliness away
She loved the moon being lonely, she hoped nobody would live there
It was her lonely moon, she wanted it lonely, then she'd not be lonely alone
She'd sleep in the daytime, moon loving vampire like
Though she hated the sight of blood, moons don't bleed
She does, she hates her blood, yet it's so pretty, arms carved, like the moon's face
Cigarrette burned craters pitting porcelain white skin
Just like her moon, cratered, hanging alone waiting on nothing
And as everyone waits for the inevitable end, the white marble quietness of death
She smiles, the moon endures, cold and distant, but resolute and so here she'll stay
Until the moon lets her leave, she's brave like that, beautiful bravery, insane.

She's tired

Crying at the icy window, nobody outside
Her warm fingers trace patterns of hearts
That soon melt away with the softest of breath
Just like her own, she is so tired

Vacant, oh so vacant, the stare that unlocks the bathroom
Cold, tired fingers turning old tired taps, begging for tepid water
To warm her chilled heart streams and Bering sea blood
She uses no cheap poundshop bubble bath today, hard soap cleans

A valve in her mind shattered, like an old guitar amp feedback burn
Too many old albums, she never really liked cds, tapes she could stand
Her feet warmed slightly by the water, her love still frozen in minds ice
She laughs at the pubic nastiness of her razor and awaits the last winter

She was a lovely lady.

Reality is random, probably

It's all connected, the paranoid know a little of what is going on
Hair do Kim snuffs it while the throngs weep invalid
Europe gets fucked off by the dead empire
I dreamt of Richard Nixon, mate of Mao, enemy of cancer
Vinyl makes another comeback as the record stores close
The spacemen land and demand to see the manager
Mails go unanswered, I've done something wrong
ex-wives find love and despair, measures equal
Wives of the now laugh and a bell rings, perfumed mornings
Crisp packet like bed sheets betray the wanker who slept before
Talent shows on magic lanterns make me violent
Drugs keep the calm anger ripe and ready to fall from the brain tree
Whisky still burns my throat, single malt indigestion
The nerves of the new year and the spatter of hopeless hope
The waking tendril arms of deja vu slap listlessly upon cheeks red
New watches, family entertainment system for the single man
The dead christmas tree turns all lord of the ringy in my nightmare
bauble covered skeletal despair filling the post christmas night
And still Kim Jong's hair looks like one bong too many
Family traits, follicle, insane.
I wonder why,why I am writing
to whom I am writing and then it dawns
the crack in the sky the opening mind eye
to you obviously, it's the why defeats me
alongside the meaning.

New Year Pseud Invasion

The pseuds are out, in every bar, never brawling
From over educated slimy lips clever words are falling
Ears search for plugs, the sensible among us for drugs
To block out the drivel dribbled out by the pseud mugs
"Have you read the...", "my view is...cleverly"
Ignorance is the politeness in this hated reverie
A memory clouded by the pub clever men, studenty dour
Long coats, berets float on to top of heads dull and sour
Smelling of eastern oils, the philosophy of hypocrisy
The "we know best" sewage pours all over me
And I start to boil, I start to foam, I am working
And 38 year old students are still blurting
About the fact that they are still learning
As if my life has no educational meaning
The pseuds annoy, the pseuds destroy
With words spitting faster than the babies toys
flying from a million prams, as you say "hey pseud"
"I do mean to be incredibly rude"
When I say "fuck off"

TSUNAMI (Part 3) by Hillel Wright

3. Recourse (March 11, 2011)

March 11, 2011 and three fishermen
are out at sea
off the northeast coast of Japan.

Let's call them Kikuchi, Sasaki
& Suzuki— common family names
of the region.

At 1440 hours
they hear the earthquake warning
and 15 minutes later
the tsunami warning.

They hear the jisshin was 9.2
on the Japanese scale
but how can that be?
The scale goes only
up to 7.

Kikuchi, the leader, tells
Sasaki & Suzuki
to head out to sea

"We must meet the wave head-on,"
he tells them.
"It's our only recourse —
there's nowhere else to go."

Half an hour later
they see the wave
a rolling mountain
on the far horizon
or rather, obliterating
the horizon altogether.

All together they head for the wave.
"90 degrees," Kikuchi warns them.
"Make sure to take it head-on —
90 degrees."

The boats and the wave move
inexorably toward each other
steadily, no hurry
like two old lovers
meeting by chance
on a lonely city sidewalk
at dusk.

"Keep your eyes on the wave"
Kikuchi tells them
"Head-on, head-on, 90 degrees —
don't be afraid."

Head-on, head-on, Kikuchi meets the wave
and climbs, the boat
bends over backward
rises like a rocket
to the celestial crest
then - over the top —
and the long slide down
the back of this brontosaurus
of the sea.

Out the starboard window
he spots Sasaki
"Good job, Sasaki-san," he spouts
in the radio mike
Yoku dekimashita!
Well done!"

Out the port side window
he sees the roiling sea.

"Can you see Suzuki?" he calls.

Sasaki doesn't answer.

"Sasaki," he calls again
"Where's Suzuki"


"Sasaki—can you hear me?
Where's Suzuki?"

"Sasaki!" he cries
"Can you hear me?"

"I hear you."

TSUNAMI (Part 2) by Hillel Wright

2. Fear & Rumor (June11, 2011)

We’ve been waiting for three days
here on Tokashiki Island
in the Ryukyus

Finally, a tuna boat comes in -
the Mayu Maru, Captain Fujiwara

He’s got three yellowfin tuna –
two juveniles – Okinawans
call them shibi -
and one adult
kihada maguro

It’s 35 kilos, sashimi grade
a beautiful fish if truth be told
it gleams in the sun
when Fujiwara-san
lifts it from the hold.

Captain Tamaki, of the Fishing Co-op
on the cell-phone
looking for a buyer.

They used to sell to Taipei & Shanghai
but no more – Taiwan & China
refuse all seafood from Japan.

“We’re in the East China Sea, for God’s sake”
says Captain Tamaki, “Over a thousand miles
from Fukushima – and still
they won’t buy our fish”

An hour passes
we wait
finally, a buyer in Manila

In Shanghai this fish is worth
a thousand dollars
Manila offers seven-fifty
Captain Fujiwara accepts

“Shipping costs will be higher too”
he says.

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