YOU’RE NOT THAT GUY, PAL                                             for Haley

You wouldn’t care to know Mr. Haley’s Dog unless you had medial caesura
written on your gun handle, and then colon period
and all you know about began guessing your message.
You couldn’t find him by searching backwards.
Sub-pump wasn’t his legal name. He takes sides with minors
who fight with their parents regarding whatever ––
and they would spring up, here and there
as often as the burgers that I’ve flipped return in the gathering dust.
For people to be happy it’s time to take the hills away
from clogging up the lemon colored tunnel.
Despicable Me wasn’t his name.
Not he sat under a pepper tree in speckled stockings
at physical location. He went by Rancho Cucamunga
as he leaned out of a sideways rail car.
There’s people crawling along under my skin.
We know what we know, but it’s time to know something else.
You don’t want to meet Daniel Boom, self-taught.
Gradually we noticed mahogany freeway barriers,
but there’s too much noise
for anything other than physical comedy.
That’s alright, I’m the lowest of the low,
I’ve fallen asleep with my favorite toy in my mouth.
Then they called him Lazy Crockett
because he said flies don’t taste weird.

2.                                            for David

Ask me to disembark from a snake cruise
without asking me to disembark from a
snake cruise. Don’t call me Bobby.
Now that I’m getting to a good age
the things I wrote before can be embarrassing
but people’s memories of me will have aged, too
from linking endlessly one thing and another
which is all one ever wanted
though one suffers most cruelly
when your mom never calls me.
One’s identity gets in the way.
Bong, James Bong.
We’ll come out of this alone, reincarnated.
If you’re reading this I’m sorry.
Crustaceans glide around their habitat
always ready to take a finger off. You’d better know
ahead of time what you’re looking for; while your best bet
is to be wrong, James Wrong, and walk back down the spring
loaded street, give the horn a little toot, ply some fresh Cerave.
It’s you after all who’s going to turn yourself in.
Because even certain primordial creatures
might end up getting greased inside a tire-swing.


That’s Wild Bill Garage you’re imagining.
It ain’t much but it’s all I’ve got.
Look again and rinse your eyes,
such is the power of regular water.
You’re gonna have to turn yourself in
so I can leave this place called Jonny Alignment.
Life is short and jittery, and imaginary.
Being serious is impossible for me,
but I’ve yet to try violence, poisoning people,
sympathetic magic. Eventually we end up at the beginning,
named Charles The Strong, carrying
his random luggage through the ambulance now that it’s stopped
my other car is also a joke
I’m really at home when cleaning my gun, smoking chamomile,
looking out the window (it swings). Don’t leave
your love to chance. Don’t spend small change.
At night I’m Satchmo, reclined on blankets in my truck of joy.
Whatever you do, center yourself, review wilderness skills
whatever you have that’s conditioned you to think
desire can be fulfilled. Put on that old time
instrumental music, heavy with apples and flowers
the corridors that are available within your house.
End the war on Spiderman let go of human error.


I have to be on my way, imaginary scenarios are calling me.
Remember that everyone you’ve slept with has a secret power.
Don’t make the mistake people make with unknown entities.
Try to hold it in until we get there. Like Uncle Fistula
I miss Appalachia, the honey beast.
I’m pouring out a stream o’ moonshine on remembered face.
Face this way to remember leaving, a little pony of the future
impervious to its specialty venom, though heartache will find you.
I’m Fats Domino tonight and no one can stop me.
Tonight is concluded. Peter the Cat is free
from being whispered. Names
in the white noise of silver sentences, the rustling
mattresses along the highway twine with tresses of antique sad.
Now the light lives entirely in my head, like Phoebus’ cute ass.
These are the murmurs that I live by. Personalized
rectal reveal. I’m Guy Guidance and this is my car lot.
Sudden red flower blooms on otherwise discreet bush.



I took my gun with a trembly hand. Sand is vibrating between me and my happiness
like the minor characters who don’t need to be seen huddling in their forest encampments
there’s a lot to worry about and you should be worried constantly

about whatever is going on, not to mention
the danger of it disappearing, probably being siphoned off, no way to be sure
the whole edifice is built on sand, with sand, and maybe even by sand:

take all the joy you can and gather it up and milk it, dispassionately.
I feel terrible when someone less clear on the topic of conversation than I am
succumbs to distraction and just sort of goes away.
My home too is a sensory nightmare.

Even my best friend, after his legendary visit to the deodorant forest
to seduce the wives of sages, he approached me with a different set of
abominations than I’m used to. Seasonal allergies. Suddenly broken furniture.

I crawled out into the desert
to eat sand, and watch the ball drop. My friend, the one I look like in the extremities, the ends
of his hair, his hands and feet –– you were right in thinking he does not exist

though I refuse to exist and he does not refuse, that’s the only difference
a gradual recline and softening of things as they settle into a workable mélange,
sand & not sand, like the front and back of a horse.

All things are dancing around and through us, their soft thighs, that’s what music
is made out of, other people lusting. I suppose it is uncommon for someone
to offer you their X rays but I feel close to your psyche, and you want to know all about my slogans

for success. Pardon my deshabille. But from the porthole, look: white light
just barely enough
to please the viewer with its disorganization, until it’s seen beneath the bursting bombs

that liquid soap has not removed the patterns from my skin. I’m covered in tattoos
and my purpose in being abroad tonight was in fact to procure some lingerie, male,
but now in the additional light of dawn so disapproving of holding hands
I must hold you to your word as a man of honor –– to release me back into Baltimore harbor.


Tamas Panitz is the author of several poetry books, including The Country Passing By (Model City 2022), and Toad’s Sanctuary (Ornithopter Press: 2021). Other books include Conversazione, interviews with Peter Lamborn Wilson (Autonomedia: 2022), and The Selected Poems of Charles Tomás; trans. w/Carlos Lara (Schism: 2022). He now co-edits the journal NEW, which he co-founded. He is also the author of a pornographic novella, Mercury in Lemonade (New Smut Series: 2023). His paintings and stray poems can be found on instagram, @tamaspanitz.