Recent Work By Jaimes Palacio

We could have stemmed the disaster.
Paused the planet with both palms
and handed out the vaccines in time.

We could have preserved the rolling hills
and erased the tracks in the sky. We could
have brought back the Everlasting Shimmering Blue.

But everyone was out bowling.

We could have seen the signs,
deciphered the vociferous dolphins’ warnings,
proved String Theory was really an extremely tiny
Hebrew named Carl on an infinitesimal Nordic Track.

We could have realized Dark Matter was the culmination
of too many shattered goals and that when we die we will
become Super Colliders on our way to shake hands with
the architects of the universes- and incidentally, the makers
of the best damn cup of Java this side of Coffee Bean.

However, we were too busy learning the art of Feng Shui.

There was a moment where we could have become
transcendent, gained the accumulated knowledge
of The Library of Alexandria, The Gnostic Scrolls,
the truth about Roanoke and The Lost Colony of 1587.
Or at the very least-the secret to why, even though
in our life time the general population has tripled, 
it is still extremely hard to get a date in Southern California.

But we chose instead to blog.

We could have been smarter.
But we watched COPS.
We could have been leaner.
But we filled our temples with wax and gum.
We could have been stronger.
But we were Lactose intolerant.
We could have been calmer.
But we were stuck in traffic.
We could have been cleaner.
But the polls were fixed.
We could have been happier.
But then we wouldn’t be a poet.
We could have been warmer.
But it wasn’t hip.
We could have been nicer.
But we inherited money.
We could have been a star.
But Los Angeles wrecked us.
We could have been grateful.
But we were too jaded.
We could have been honest.
But it was too much fun to destroy someone.
We could have been decent.
But we killed the Indians.
We could have been fair.
But we killed the Mexicans.
We could have been colorblind.
But we killed the Blacks.
We could have had vision.
But we killed the Japanese.
We could have been beautiful.
But we killed the homosexuals.
We could have saved Jesus.
But he looked so damn cool, crucified on our Mantel Piece.

Special note: this interview is taken from a transcript of an experiment conducted using a new cutting edge device, created by Dr. Metalbaum Glisshammer. The device, wirelessly connected to special microscopic sensors planted near the hippocampus, allows for tracking and recording of brain activity, and more importantly, translates that activity into actual conversation. Dr. Glisshammer, infamously known for his tragic experiments splicing the DNA of very intelligent Rottweilers with supermodels, has high hopes this new device will be a “game changer” in the scientific community.

Left Side Of The Brain: (for some reason sports a British accent) So Jaimes, thank you for joining us here today.

Right Side Of The Brain: Well, Jaimes, I really didn’t have much of a choice in the matter really…

Yes, well…we have been asked to discuss the details of our participation in, particularly, the O.C. Poetry community. Would you like to begin?

Well, as you know we entered the scene in a round about way. We had taken a Creative Writing class in high school, but the idea of going to readings or even writing poetry on a consistent basis certainly didn’t happen till years later.

Yes, our mutual friends and poetry promoter’s Victor Infante and Elmo Martin had been hosting a reading and eventually we accepted their invitations to attend and became rather intrigued by the whole thing.

That’s how YOU remember it. The truth is for months I attempted to persuade a certain Left side of the brain to allow us to go, but it was always one excuse after another.

I was only hesitant because I wanted more information. You were so apt to do haphazard, foolish and even, dare I say it, dangerous experimentation.

The word you are looking for is creative. I was creative and you, well you are about as boring as an infomercial for walkers.

Creative? That time we argued with gang members? That was arts & crafts was it?

They broke into our car!

We waved a fake broken B.B. gun, threatening neighbors?

We didn’t threaten the neighbors. We merely said that if they knew who broke into our car they better pray the police got to them before we did. And afterward, the neighborhood respected us.

They didn’t respect us. They laughed at us behind our back and called the police! What about the time we were arrested for trespassing?

We were not arrested.

The cops shoved guns in our face, handcuffed us and threw us into a police car!

But we were not arrested. Besides it was a film project.

Yes, so you told the police as they surrounded us. “Oh it’s alright officer! I’m filming!” Utter careless irresponsibility!

Okay, maybe that was a lapse in judgment.

That’s just it. You are a consistent source of lapse of judgment!

Okay, now your just being overly dramatic.

Am I? The fight with a skinhead at the karaoke bar?

He started it.

Getting us arrested for shoplifting aspirin?

We had a headache.

We ended up spending 5 days in jail!

Alright. Alright. What about you? Always over analyzing everything! What about asking Stacee McCarver if we could kiss her? Seriously, you NEVER ask if you can kiss someone?

I was trying to be…

…Stupidly, amazingly, idiotic!


Ha! Respectful! You are just afraid of taking any chances. And, I’ll tell you something else this flippin’ OCD you have us saddled with, is so annoying!

Organization and order is not a disease.

Holy cats! We can’t even enjoy porn because everything has to be to your specifications!

I’m sorry there is simply no excuse for not having at least somewhat of a plot. And does it really kill them to shoot things in order and not to film the bloody things on what is apparently a sinking ship! Half the time it makes us so dizzy we have to reach for the Dimenhydrinate!

The what?

Dramamine dear boy.

That’s exactly what I’m talking about! You can’t simply say Dramamine?

Point taken. I will try to curb my enthusiasm for cultured speech. But look, this is getting us nowhere. Let’s just admit that we both intrude from time to time on each others…space.

Fine. Whatever. What’s the next question?

Good…Now, I know some of our inspirations include Salvador Dali, David Lynch, Douglas Adams and Neil Gaiman.

Don’t forget Rod Serling.

Right. The question remains how does that actually influence our poetry? For me I would say the more intellectually stimulated I am, the more ideas I can explore.

You mean the more creative ideas you can kill.

Nooo. I mean what I said.

(laughs bitterly) You edit to death.

I clarify thoughts.

No you don’t. You kill them. I come up with a great idea. The first draft is humming and then you come into it and muck it all up.

So you don’t believe in editing?

I believe in good editing. You…you just don’t know when to stop.

Is that so?

(mimicking L.S. accent) That is so, dear boy!

(ignores the mimicking) Be that as it may, we obviously have some pieces that have connected with certain people. We have been published in some fine publications. Hosted and produced some well respected readings.

We were big in Riverside…

Ah yes, the cult of THE BAD POET MAN! Quite an interesting phenomenon.

Of course, the Riverside Poets started the whole thing, performing the piece, as it were, every week, and adding their own spin which, if I recall, was as if Robert Altman directed a Kabuki version of the thing. For a time we were treated like kings in Riverside.

Later I heard that someone in Las Vegas was claiming he had written BAD POET MAN and was performing it at Enigma. Our 15 seconds of fame…

Perhaps, but we were also involved in a number of important events: The OC Poetry Festival, The NEW VOICES showcase which we created for the festival, benefits featuring Brendan Constantine, Rick Lupert, Derrick Brown, Mindy Nettifee, Amber Tamblyn, Jeffrey McDaniel…ah, remember when we D.J.d his wedding?

Dropping names? Talk about classless!

I’m simply noting that when we work together we can accomplish great things.
Sure. When the tides are right and the moon is in the correct orbit and the planets align, and the light sings to the deep blue sea and the …

We get the point! Moving forward. What part does music and pop culture play in our work?

Um. A big one. Though you often edit all my pop culture references.

Only the really obscure ones.

Theodore Giessel references are not obscure. Dizzy Gillespie references are not obscure. …um…Twin Peaks references: not obscure.

Well, you obviously don’t understand marketing.

And you obviously missed your calling working for FOX.

Perhaps, if your writing was less surreal…

What? It would be more popular? I could get a guest appearance on
THE HILLS? Oh goodie!

The trouble with you is you want fame but you only want it on your own terms. That just isn’t realistic. You have to grow up! You have to accept your station in life!

And what is that exactly?

We are middle aged. We are soft and ludicrously ill equipped to compete financially, emotionally or creatively. In short: we are in a rut.

Yeah…You’re a dick!

Very mature!

(incredibly has, apparently, produced a kazoo and is now kazooing the song I’LL NEVER GROW UP!)

Oh, don’t be childish.

(suddenly stops, turns and barks at L.S.) What about the ozone layer?

Excuse me?

Do you realize there are huge gaps in the Ozone Layer? Some the size of small towns? Did you know the universe is expanding? Did you know the stars we see at night are probably long extinct? Did you know right now there are small movements that will lead to the ultimate destruction of all life as we know it?!

Ah! So what you are saying is that politics and modern causes fuel our poetry!

No. I wasn’t. Though they certainly are often a factor. What I was trying to point out is that you don’t see the whole picture! That is why you have to have everything so compartmentalized! That is why you cannot think creatively. And that is why I had to drag us to become involved in the O.C. Poetry Scene.

That’s not entirely true. You wanted to be an actor, but failed at it.

Acting has always, and will always, be our first love. Being in the scene keeps our performance levels from becoming rusty.

Speak for yourself. The odds of us ever getting famous are astronomical.

If you allowed me to take more chances…

If I allowed you to take more chances we would be dead by now!

Yes. But we would be happier!

Then why even be a poet?

Are you kidding? Why does anyone do anything.?

Oh, I don’t know. To improve society. To connect with your fellow man. To leave an important legacy behind…

…Yes! Exactly! Yeah, that’s good.

You were going to say “to meet girls” weren’t you?


My God you are just bloody useless.