Pages

Monday, April 16, 2018

REQUIEM FOR THE LAST NORMAL MAN



1.

I've taken to writing my grocery lists
on the backs of my business cards
(I make better use of them that way)
and if I should happen to forget
and hand one out
at least the recipient knows the answer 
to the age-old question of
What's for dinner?

And how one longs for the days when

the man in aisle 5 talking to himself
was just your garden variety crazy
person and not some pussy-whipped
hubby taking orders from headquarters or
some Russian spy 
reporting to the White House

2.


The highest office 

for sale
to the lowest bidder 
while Joe Six-Pack grows so 
pious
worshiping flags
he's lost sight of the 
Grand Poobah
who transcends all this tribalism 

but even God knows

He's less sacred than
profane

3.


We gather by the river...


we're not praying

we're just wading in
and peeing 


4.

There's another kind of pollution

it is of the mind
it's seeped into the water supply
it's in the drinking water
it makes you paranoid 
to the point of nothing and
no one can be trusted
not even your own 

mom

you strongly suspect she's a
crisis actor on her days off
from the waffle house

the next stop for you is 

The Walking Dead


5.


I will admit it's getting

harder to identify
the good guys
it used to be so easy
they were the ones with
the white hats

6.


There's a deranged man

who shambles down my street
in the mornings
muttering
Take that shit to Valhalla!
while tugging on his crotch 

I feel that he's in contact
with unseen spirits
who know exactly what he's
talking about
but as for me
I wrack my brain daily
sifting through possible meanings

I know one day
that same flash of illumination
will arrive for me
being fully aware
that to get there
I'll have to follow
in his footsteps 

Sunday, April 8, 2018

EXHIBIT "A"



And if your life starts out
Like crap
There's no need to panic
Cuz you can hit your stride
A little farther 
Down the line

I'm Exhibit A...


But if your song starts out

Like crap
Like some rap crap
That ain't got no melody
That can only find the beat
But not the beauty 
Then I'm outta here
Cuz that same ol' song and dance
Won't cut it 
Lessin' you're MJ resurrected
On a Sunday morning
Doin' the moonwalk 
On this planet badly in need of a miracle
Or Rita Hayworth in that silky black
Excuse for a dress 
Running like a watercolor in the rain 
Or even Eddie Money wailin'
If I Could Walk On Water 

Could use that miracle now
You betcha

Keepin' the spirit alive

And holdin' on 

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

WHEN IN ROME



You bloated pig
wallowing in the ooze
of your own excess
while that anthem rings
hollow
through every coliseum  
across the land
so morbidly obese
you can't even stand for it
in decent fashion anymore
that's alright
don't bother
cuz  you've already shat upon
all you once held dear
(let's start with the word integrity)
but traded for a seat at the circus
clowns to the left
jokers to the right
hope you like 
the freak show

bread and circuses

for the (m)asses





Tuesday, March 27, 2018

SPRING WAS YESTERDAY



Once again he's ignored 
the Steely admonition
not to go for that cotton candy
the kid will live 
not learn
as his ship of state burns
(Deep Purple's "Smoke On The Water"
 in the background)
heading straight for that looming
thing ahead 

His little Engine That Could 

having jumped the tracks 
way back in New Jersey
keeps plowing ahead 
through the shit fields of time 
out of 
sheer 
fukU
disdain

So let's go downtown

and find out where 
The Mikado is playing 
I need some color
in these grey days
rapidly fading to black 

Put on a grand show

cuz I need you 
to take me for that ride
to fool me again
and in the end
pretend again
that I'm surprised


Tuesday, March 20, 2018

FILM NOIR



I know secrets
tucked away in perpetuity
that are too dangerous for the world 
to reveal

and so do you


I wonder whose secrets
would make the world
blow up faster...

yours or mine?

Monday, March 12, 2018

I BELIEVE ONLY IN GARLIC



It is mid morning
and some salesmonkey in Mississippi
is ringing my number
ignoring the grave warnings 
in my voice greeting

someone on the telly
implores me repeatedly
to ask my doctor about
something
and the shopping aisles
are lined with friendly reminders
to get my flu shot

they're trying to kill me at every turn


so I'm off to do my power walk
and as the plague spreads across Sweden
I believe only in garlic
and apple cider vinegar
and beets
and in the end
perhaps
like James Coburn
I believe only in dynamite

and you're still hot and heavy
for a man from your past who was
arrogant and insensitive to your feelings
a quasi musician with no real ambition
(I've read the private thoughts of so many 
so please don't feel singled out)
and I remember the night she said:
how DARE you invade my mind like that!

sorry...

my ancestors were Vikings

we live in constant dread

like quail scurrying across open spaces 


time runs down

till time runs out
and in the end
we're all just looking for something
that's more enduring than we are 

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

FIRST DAY OF THE POETRY CLASS I'M NOT TEACHING



Stop looking for the
pretty word
and start looking for the
relevant one
there are so many pretty words
blocking the sun
and the cold light of day
I'm 'bout to choke on the perfume

get over the sweet sickness
of wanting to make pretty words
and come to your senses
there are five of them
(six if you ask Bruce Willis)
and you can use them all
do ya hear me?
do ya see what I'm sayin?
are ya sniffin' out my meaning?
you can almost taste it now, right?

(has this touched you in any way?)

cuz nobody writes like you
when you sayin' things that have a meaning
and not just a sound
nobody else can do it
egg-zachly like you
and that's the beauty of it, pardner
right there

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

FAR AFIELD



The rain swept through here this morning
cleaning everything but the film 
clouding your eyes

she was all smoke and mirrors

from the beginning
and on some level you knew that
but sometimes you have to do
the wrong thing
just to know you're still alive

so once again you've gone far afield

just to learn your lesson
traipsing through a meadow
dotted with toadstools
beside that Houston police station

Don Knotts' twin brother gloms onto you

at the hotel in New Orleans
breaking into an old barbershop song
and muttering inappropriate comments about
the young girl behind the front desk
as you stand there
trying to check out of your life
he was a tennis champion long ago
before the personality disorder set in

and you feel you need to wake up

from something
but you don't know what it is
and you know that nothing will ever be
the same again
but it will be the same again
after it's been different
for a long enough time

hey just try to find one

who isn't a little wacko
in some way
as crazy serves as the new norm
all fueled by drugs and booze and war
tumult and upheaval
the daily pressures of survival
as the TV screams
be afraid
be very afraid
and high school kids
serve as daily target practice
for the irreversibly deranged

our one slim hope to turn it around 

being to make "Jackie Blue" 
the new national anthem
sung at the start of every ballgame
the fans mouthing the words
with their hands over their hearts
so deadpan serious

and you 

console yourself 
with the epiphany that you see things
too clearly
with a grasp on the nuts 
of the problem
not commonly held
but once again you've squeezed them 
too tightly
as slippery sluts
slide through your fingers 
and you vow that next time
by freaking god
you will raise your standards
and use a little less olive oil 







Tuesday, February 20, 2018

JIMMY REED HIGHWAY




Saturday night
and everybody gotta be somewhere
or thinks that they do

I'm okay bein' nowhere


but if I was gonna be somewhere

I'd be rollin' down that Jimmy Reed Highway
take out some insurance
an' let 'er rip

the spirit moves

when you've nothing to lose
barreling full throttle ahead
ignoring all the warning signs
til you crash and burn
that's a tough way to go out
but a helluva ride

when the last person who remembers you dies

so do you
some romantic bullshit maybe
as Brando would say
I'm committing slow suicide
but it's better than the alternative

and the world is screaming

NO NO
we can't be lost 

And Hitler is still waiting

outside the gates of Hell
twiddling his thumbs
they've tightened up their immigration policy
as in some other places

I've played host to The Devil incarnate
masquerading in female form
his favorite disguise
according to Elvis
and my own observation

but love was easy when it was

like a jackhammer penetrating your indifference
like a lumberjack chipping away at your resistance
like a finger on your trigger
like a ditch digging its digger
like Humpty Dumpty humping all the king's horses
like the Queen Mum humping all the king's men
like a congressman with a coke bottle up his ass
like it's so damn funny I forgot to laugh

ah, but those good times

they don't last
and you're just a momentary blip
on the radar screen of existence
headed for that crash landing

no survivors

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

LOVE POEM



Always hated fukken Valentine's Day
cuz you had to git all dressed up 
and show up wit a box of chocolates
under youse arm and 
take her out to dinner
and da whole bit
when what you really wanted to do 
was stay home and watch da basketball game 
in your skivvies
and to make matters worse
a couple weeks later
she ain't even wit you no mo!!!
what kinda deal is dat?

think I got out just in time man
what wit dis war between da sexes
dat's raging today
HEY
I ain't gonna study war no more
so why would I need 
some old battle-axe around???

now I be watchin' da game
and poppin' dem yummy chocolates
into my own face
finally catchin' on
finally wakin' up
to da realization 
at long long last
just how sweet life can be... 

when I'm in love wit me