by Matthew Burnside

don't let the dream militia lynch you tonight on that last flight to Sao Paulo. your ex-wife was a peach till she wrapped that rhinestone fist around your jealous jowl. you should've been nicer to her secret lovers. in the airplane bathroom don't rest your eyes even for a moment. you'll fall asleep, that liquid lump of lavender soap in your stomach will grow like a foam boulder, roll up into your brain. you will hallucinate an army of eagles peeling back panels with their hooked beaks, mugging your clothes midair, leave you swimming stratus swindled at the hips

my humble advice: hunt down the last pink cloud of morning & fuck it into mist. don't drink precipitation unless drying of thirst. the ash-throated evening rises like reflux shit gurgling in the toilet, glugging up like ugly truth to the surface, like little secrets on the back of your hand— scratches within the ventricles of a trumpet

my humble advice: stop writing novels about your lover's eyelids. save your spring-loaded words for spiral scars. i.e. better bandages for deeper cuts. quit your petty passive-aggression. there's no use snipping the brakes of a bumper car. angels aren't break dancers, devils aren't DJs

in the bathtub rum renders your teeth Chiclets, tongue taffy. the mandible ridge perforated as to allow easy snapping. this anatomy lesson is free of charge. this taxonomy of twitch is terror. the next sawed-off alphabet will prove untraceable

that's when you hear the rusty snap-clang: bleeding to death from a bear trap in the middle of a minefield is no way to go. build yourself a blanket out of shrapnel to keep you safe from shame. slowly pull out those skyscrapers upon which your heart is impaled, shift them into your shins till they're teepees

you should really find a girl who keeps all those pictures of you, not just the ones that look good posted on Facebook. now you don't get no love at the clubs you should really take off that hat who you think you are Jamiroquai?

my humble advice: get yourself a new hat

the death of small hope comes dovetailing in like a horse shot through its neck crashing through your chandelier. the death of small hope swings like a porcelain piñata strung too tall in the tree, some stranger in a suit comes along & cuts down the tree, you crack the piñata with a stick it was empty all along. the death of small hope is the light at the end of the tunnel/ the galloping headlights of the train whistling martyrdom

my humble advice: don't try to make too much sense of it. like deciphering God's grocery list. like locating the love child of Carmen Sandiego & Where's Waldo. like capturing the color of mirrors

my humble advice: be more like Charles Bronson. bloody hands that wash easily in the ugly hump of midnight you hear the bathroom sink cough toenails, sheets grumble teeth grow fur pillow dribbles yesterday's dream residue. flip it over to make it fresh again, cool upon the ear. flip your life like you flip the pillow

my humble advice: don't get caught masturbating in the back of your mother's Ford Taurus to pixilated cleavage in a Nintendo Power magazine. the wolves of her eyes knew, swirled a net of shame which scarred into symphony. that birthday was the birthday nobody showed up. grandma was in the furnace knitting no mercy rapping give us this day our daily debt bleed us not into exsanguination forgive us our flammable dress

my humble advice: don't bring your samurai sword to work with you, even if it's Bring Your Samurai Sword To Work Day. leave that shit at home. don't ask the duty-free shop clerk at the airport if they have some dynamite in the back. they don't have dynamite in the back

my humble advice: don't apologize so much. love is not the only verb. our blown fuselage our tremble treble, our staccato shockrot radio. go drown her volume in the river, burn her bones in the ravine. honor the ceremony of red: leave home to find home. swallow that waterfall whole. let the cherry sleep of childhood die, dissolve like quasar

my humble advice: don't take my advice. take your own, even then with a sea of salt

Q: how many paper cuts must one human heart endure?
A: as many as it takes, till the heart itself is paper