Eric Greinke

Break Out

Passing everything at snail’s pace,
no roadblocks can slow us down.

Even though we have no destination
we’re running on pure adrenaline.

Inside every heart is a tiny suitcase.
Inside the suitcase, musical scales.

Telescopic microorganisms contort
in disproportionate macrospasms,

their ecstatic mutations subsonic.
Masochists pass out mass market snacks.

Some of us send them back,
preferring a different attack.

Anchor chain reactions hold us
to the bottom, drowning in debt.

A giant piñata hangs over our heads.
Once burst, its contents surprise us.

Ironic ironing-boards dictate
that flat compliments all fabric.

Bows are optional but even the nude
may want to wear comfortable shoes.

Sometimes you wake alone with no one
following, & you’re at the border

of an unexplored but occupied land
where you make time your own.

A cow was loose on the highway today.
I wanted her to escape her captors.

She ran wild against the traffic.
The drivers could only think about burgers.

But not me.  I want all prisoners
to get away, before it’s too late.


From Mirror To You

Your sad hands ramble over
The badlands of your face
Like old prospectors that drag
Metal-detectors across the beach.
They call their grim barracks castles.
They search for adorable fortunes
Beneath abandoned arcade boardwalks.
They invest their time on shaky docks.
But although the harbor is empty
A brave life-raft will sail out
Toward the open, opulent ocean
Over the waves of your hair
Below the cliffs of your brow
Finding a fresh current to freedom.


Wilderness Survival

Some loud colors shout at us
from the body of the land.

Out in the ozone, a hole
forms to make an open wound.

The earth’s arms are tied up
& injected with drain cleaners

to break the shale skin,
to frack the frail flesh.

There’s a great party going on
at The Happiest Place On Earth.

Caricatures of zoo animals
excite the children of Generation X,

who know how to survive
in the wilderness of the internet.

© Eric Greinke

Eric Greinke’s poems and essays have been published in hundreds of American and international literary magazines since the early seventies, including Delaware Poetry Review,  Gargoyle, Ginyu (Japan), The Journal (UK), Lake Effect, Main Street Rag, New York Quarterly, The Paterson Review, The Pedestal, Poem, Prairie Schooner, Prosopisia (India), and South Carolina Review.  He is the author of twenty books, most recently Shorelines (Adastra Press, 2018).  He is a Contributing Writer for the Schuylkill Valley Journal.

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