by Mark Peters

           for Bob Creeley

What's all the fuss about anyway? There's nobody here, baby. No phone. No computer. No beer. No fair. No fear. I'm not going to sleep tonight. I have wasted my life. I liked but loved not. I have no children and no pets. Not even a piece of gum. Ooops! No banana.... No bicycles allowed in bank. There will be no negotiations. And of course there's no way out. Then we'll see who doesn't like hot dogs. I don't know. Stuffed dogs don't bite. Not tonight. Headbutting is a no-no. That might not be true, of course. Do you believe that people learn nothing from history? I'm in no position to choose. I think I'm doomed. I couldn't get home. And now the winter was over. All for nothing. It is nothing. It is no harm. I have no sense of direction whatsoever. I have no idea, should I? No chance in hell. No down payment. No drugs or pets. No children, no pets. No bra, no panties. No pain, but a lot of blood. A robot cannot be a legal witness. John Denver is dead! Not dead! Not dead! We choose NOT to smoke. You have no new messages in your inbox. You don't know what pain is. You don't know much about science, do you? No one has ever died of a dog bite. Nobody walked in that yard, and nobody drove that big gray car. There were no tracks in the grass. William didn't fuck around. There is no such thing as paranoia. And frankly, zero counts. Or to put it another way, "nothing" matters. Nothing more needs improvement. If it's all or nothing, it's got to be nothing . . . Silence. Tim cannot believe it! He had never has a fair chance, poor little fellow. He has no dog and he has no friends and his lawn is dying. No arguments could stop him. And now he died. There was no doctor to help him. And no robots. Gone! I never thought about it. There was no choice about this. I never want to talk about it. I did not make her throw up. I am not drowning. No one was really sorry. There were some things worse than even starving to death. Shut the door! The end is near. I'll never understand. I haven't changed much. It's not my fault, sir. There was no cause for financial alarm. The immediate result of this was nothing. Death in the night. No surprise. No parents or roommate. No more milk and cookies. No medication. No communication problems. No self-stimulatory behavior. No one can or will harm you. No soup for you, Sammy Sosa. Ye shall not be bald after eating horses. THERE IS NO FINISH LINE. Nothing is funnier! And from that point on, there is no finish line. The agony was almost over. Love is nothing like they say. Witnesses say the gunman was running and shooting at no one in particular. I've got no problem accepting the truth. But I have no sister. That is not what I meant at all. Not in our time. Not in my house. There is no shrine, no temple. No more Tom? No more bagels? No more red pesto? You have forgot. I'll have nothing more to do with you. I am gone. I was never one of them. There is no such thing as the truth. In terms of money there was no value to the property. Nobody could live there. The house is not built, not even begun. Nothing has changed and perhaps never will. No, there are no ghosts in your bedroom. No one talking. Then a silence. You mean you're gone for good? I don't care. There is no struggle. There is no passion. Worse still, no one is punished. But nobody knows if that is so. Me, I never had no kids. I never had no wife. This isn't true. It isn't true. Supposing that there was no reason for a distress. Supposing that there was no astonishment. No land, no house, no job. No place to go. No schools, no work. Not wanted here; not needed there. None will be witnesses. No song is sad. There is no bell to ring. There is no delusion. There is no such thing. No question about it. It's no good. Free of charge. All over. Finished now. Not a hope! Hell no. I didn't know. It's never my last chance. Never. I was not interested. I was not instructed. I'm not afraid. I don't even own a rubber chicken. I never did. Our ancestors ate no priests at all. I cannot see the barn. I don't want no supper. You don't know what worry is. I have had enough. They say there is no hope. But there was no information. It is no madness. It is not tragedy. We are not shadows. I'm not kidding. There were no cowboys. And no Bessie. No fair! Nobody knows me here. Nope. Mike's naked with no clothes and no head. He is not dead. It was not a dream. It was like being the male lead in a porno without any sex. No one can call this state of affairs rational. This means NO BREEDING. I do not know why. Forget Irv. Don't cry over burnt toast. It has nothing to do with me. There were no immediate results. I don't believe we have any right to violate the law. Not going home alone, are you? Nobody knows me here. My money is nearly gone. Nobody wants to see your dinky little schlong. Not even Sue. Nope. What? No dessert? No, not Barbie. Not sexy, but smart. Not a mouthful. Not all pain is the same. Nothing is lost. We got nowhere. I have forgotten. That's not life. I did not think so. Nothing comes of it. Something for nothing? He was dying and I laughed. But finally all these questions lead nowhere. There ain't no heaven. No more shock treatments. Not applicable. Vacant. None. Gone. Dead. But no death penalty. No way of dying. Is it bad to have come here and to have found the bed empty? We do not care–that much is clear. We are not wise. We're not in any trouble. No protesters and a few police were visible. No one is ever happy. Nobody knows us down there. They wanted no scandals. I guess papa's gone. Maybe–nobody knows. On the first morning it rained she found that she had no umbrella. She had no winter jacket, no hat, no shoes. In fact, she was not jealous at all. No, sir. No, sir. Empty. Not guilty! Nonsense. There were no misunderstandings, no apparent differences of opinion. There has been no great violence done. I don't want to make catastrophic mistakes. No. Not me. No use. Her pigtails were cut. She's leaving? How could that NOT be nacho cheese on my nacho-chachos?? Don't you worry about my mind, sweetheart! I have nothing in mind. I have no doubt, no doubt at all. Do you know nothing? Do you see nothing? Do you remember nothing? I made no comment. I am a luckless man. At this point in my life, I have no shame, I guess. It was as though the world in which I'd been living had never been. We will leave you. We are, all of us, at risk, and medical science is powerless to stop it. I don't know about that. I have no argument with the world whatsoever. I can't make choices of such kind. I only work here, I don't know... There's no similarity. It's not veal. No, we're not a team. I am not sick. Bananas are gone, eaten. No kisses. Not a good sign. No signs of animosity. No cursing or spitting. No daughter and she's not a blonde. No cash. Nope. I haven't changed. Not that I know of. There's no past like the present. It's all over with us. There are no doors. There's no mystic energy field that controls my destiny. No fucking beer. Absolutely forbidden. She's not legal. Cindy's gone. Kablooey! I have no siblings. I wish I had a dog. I had a dog but he's gone. Not here. Not here. All gone. It didn't happen. There is no end. There's no clear distinction between copulation and infection. Don't worry about it, Mom. It ends when you're dead. It's never too late. There's nothing unusual about that. The bombing does not represent victory. I hope not. Keep your head down and don't make a sound. But you're not there. Not yet? There's no fries? We have no salt. No more war! There was no ceremony. No sense of humor. If nothing is done, disaster is imminent. Nothing unpleasant will happen. So nothing will be wasted. I'm not dead. And that's not comedy. Not tonight. No thanks. Consumption of alcohol may make you think you are whispering when you are not. It's not a night I'd pick for a long walk. It's no use now. Dark in here, too. How dare you talk of something you know nothing about? You've got yourself worked up over nothing. But never mind. Never mind what it costs! There's nothing wrong with life. They can kill the doughnuts but they can't kill the holes. Oh, shut up, will you. It's no excuse. It's no good, Papa. Don't worry, Mom. You know me, I do not drink a lot. I love you not. I didn't get why you would want to attain nothingness. Because then there would be no hope. So no booze for you. There is no goddamn moon. Go back to sleep. Don't you touch me. Stop the planet and let me off. I'd expect nothing less. No disrespect intended. No, I don't mind. I don't think I mind! Decidedly not. No, I was not. Not as a rule. Oh no. I'm not dead. Do not comment. Shhh. Nothing but the truth. Not again. I have nowhere to go. Silence at the end of the phone. It wasn't necessary. I don't like eggs. I never liked eggs. I don't give a shit what anyone thinks. And no jury would have convicted me. And I don't understand. There is nothing in my life that is pleasant or delightful. I couldn't be any happier. These are not fantasies. The game is over. Nobody got killed. I regret everything. No shit, Sherlock. You don't understand. Again there was a silence. I'll never forget what happened to my innocence on that fateful day in first grade. Don't you hear me? She was gone. She was gone. She is dead. I don't know anything about it. I couldn't help it. You do not really need to know. There was no window. Thinking about it would make it no better. Dead doctors don't say no. Blonde doesn't get any blonder than this. It's not a good idea. Not for polite company. Doctor–I'm naked! No doubt. No wonder. No dogs or philosophers allowed. No need to worry, it's just another day for the Sex Men. Not again. Say nothing of the circumstances. I'm not dead. I got mad because no one else could see I was having this problem. I couldn't stop sneezing, and my eyes felt like they had sand in them. There's no survivors. There's no cure. Castration isn't enough. There is nothing better of its kind. Summer was over. No thanks. HOME IS WHERE THE HOLE IS. But nooooo! That was no sailboat. And not brown sugar.

Pub. March 2000