Were I smarter, they'd be better.
Were I wiser, would not have done
The things I rhyme down to the letter
I once upon a time thought fun.
Fun, all right, but never knew
The consequences such fun drew
Except for fire and damnations
Heard from holy lamentations.
Fairytale endings never
Happen much to anyone.
Endings are perversely clever
And dreams-come-true: a cosmic pun.
Need the reins, I need the spurs
To hold me back or kick my ass;
Need a love with lips like hers
That can dish out all the sass
That takes me either way she wants--
A sexy come-on that she flaunts;
Or bridle me with hard-bit leads
To keep me focused on our needs--
Out of control, don't have a chance
Without her leading in the dance.
Recall's something of the past,
Who I was is going fast.
But fast is good, now I can see
Early on, eternity.
It's all confusion, do my best
Until the day I'm put to rest.
Physical. The usual drill.
Woman doctor. Asked me still.
Attractive, and of course my answer
Hid that it would be a pleasure
If she checked that place for cancer.
A female's slender finger's measure
Is less than what you get from men--
What's more, can't remember when
A woman put her finger there.
Bent forward straight ahead I stare.
Control freaks I've had in my life:
Parents, best friends, loving wife.
I've been lucky, they've been right,
Teaching me how not to fight--
Go with the flow, they'd do the rest,
All they asked was do my best.
But then the songbirds in the spring
Couldn't teach me how to sing.
You know I'm right but you're afraid
To take a step to make a change;
You're comfortable, and no crusade
You think will ever rearrange
Our lives into a life that's better--
Dismissed me like a foolish letter.
Football, soccer, all the same--
Money, passion in a game
That isn't doing any good
For Man, especially Sisterhood.
What's it take to make us see
The games condone the misery?
Distraction when thoughts should be on
Conditions that our systems spawn.
Exposed my heart and you're surprised--
My eyes didn't do their job.
You feel shock; I'm compromised;
Embarrassed I let my feelings rob
Me of dignity, I'm ashamed--
Spiked emotions cruelly tamed.
Just been told I'm going to die
(As if anybody's not).
To say I care I'd have to lie,
Can't say I've enjoyed a lot.
War, disease and poverty
Is mostly what life's meant to me.
Even though my privileged life
Always shielded me from strife,
I've never found a way to be
Happy beside the misery.
I'm at the age
They're dying all around me.
He was a clown,
At times a sage
Who kicked my ass at Jeopardy.
The clown spoke fast,
And had a knack
For bringing out the comedy;
The sage came last,
Brain filled with plaque--
Losing to a tragedy.
The souly voice that spoke inside,
When his reason hid from him,
Told him, eyes and ears have lied--
Reality is not as grim.
Just hang on to your suspense--
Grip it tight for what it's worth.
Matters not if it makes sense,
Regardless, you're still of this earth.
That souly voice, my, it can lie--
It comforts you until you die.
Twin reactions, both as strong,
And either could be right.
Then again, both could be wrong
Seen in another light.
Can't tell if I have just been mugged
While thinking I was getting hugged.
The prince of darkness smiled at her,
And she could not resist;
Thought to run but wasn't sure:
She liked the way he kissed.
His eyes were bright, she threw the dice And found his hands were cold as ice--
And somehow they had gripped her heart.
Suddenly saw the warmth depart
Playing his thrill-seeking games
That promised going down in flames.
My father told me once, don't throw
Good money after bad;
Just took once, so I should know
The situation's sad
To see politicians dream so big:
But pearls can't dress up a pig.
Hatred travels as love will
And it can get you through the day;
Goes farther than the sad dove will--
Hatred keeps the hawks away
Before they dive on easy prey.
Hatred has so much to say.
His pronouncements: seedy, smarmy,
Talking about Iraq.
Sent an occupying army
That's never coming back
Until the job is done, he says.
Decider. Him. 'Cuz he's the prez.
Fighting a war that can't be won--
Determined not to be outdone.
Three ways to keep the system going:
Inflation, debt, or war.
Those who own the system knowing
What those things are for:
To make more profits, getting fat
As they help themselves--
Getting rid of surplus that
Is sitting on the shelves.
Inflation, debt: will buy it up;
War will blow it all away.
Any way you fry it up
Is going to make their day.
They play the people with a plan--
Those who own the system can.
Those who've got the money;
Above them sits the President
Who tries to put a sunny
Face on this abomination
We call a democratic nation.
Smart enough to see it's wrong--
Not smart enough to make it right.
Best I do's, not go along,
And every chance I get I fight
The notion things cannot be changed--
Truly changed, not re-arranged.
Hateful people need a reason
To orchestrate their hate.
The best of all for them is treason,
But demonstrate on lesser weight:
Women's rights, sex and genders;
Immigration; God is great;
Skinheads thinking they're defenders
Of the race--there's no debate.
The issue of the underclass:
Welfare, homeless, those on the street
Who know for sure their sorry ass
Gets kicked if they can't talk real sweet.
Any issue like those will
Get them up in arms at you.
Everybody humors me--
The kindness of estrangers.
They won't take me seriously--
The fate of Stewart Granger's.
Growing up I never saw
What I was going to be.
From the start I would withdraw
A place to hide, was never found--
I disappeared without a sound.
A youngster, I'd go on and on;
Now can't get a word from me.
I'm mum with my reactions gone
From the cold reality--
I watch TV, and that is it.
I drink and eat and piss and shit.
What do you think the first tool was?
It could have been the toothpick.
I think the toothpick first because
Stringy raw meat tends to stick
Between the teeth and drive you nuts--
Necessity followed those raw cuts.
Then again it could have been
The stone that beaned the brooding hen.
I didn't get your comfort food.
I had other things to do.
So did you. Your bedtime mood
Let's me know that I can screw
Myself, the chance for love
Is strangled by an iron glove.
Kiss the upstairs geek's sweet ass
To teach you what you need to know
About computers so you can pass
Your writings on to us that go
The speed of light. Pass on the news
You share with your developed views.
You bought your house, the bedroom side
To your neighbor's kitchen.
When our hours coincide
Not a soul is bitching;
But banging around the kitchen nights,
When you turned out your bedroom lights,
Is bound to rub you wrong. So, say
Something to us the next day.
Gladiators, modern day,
Do the same once done in Rome:
Take attention far away
From the problems here at home.
So does war--more risky choices
Drowning out rebelling voices.
Nations when they say, unite,
Do it when they choose to fight.
People, if they chose to change,
Unite themselves to re-arrange
The system that has got them down,
Run by those who sit uptown.
The world can't be as bad as that.
If it were, you would check out.
There's love and heart--you laugh about
Funny stuff from where you're at.
Your world, as bad as it may be,
Won't last for eternity.
Men are dumb and I'm the dumbest
Of them all, it seems.
Senses numb, and mine the numbest
To any woman's dreams
Who wants a man to sense what they
Desire--never have to say.
Every line of this? A gripe.
Also case of stereotype.
Alienation's one disease
That cannot be prevented.
From your job where you appease
The boss who you've resented,
To those you work with every day
Who use you so's to get ahead.
Alienation's in the way
Of everything you want instead:
Work that's play, a life of love
For living things and stars above.
Can you get enough? You bet.
But most of us are wanting
For fulfillment--never get
Enough to shake the haunting
Songs of love and fables that
Suggest success is where it's at.
Who knows where it's at these days?
Prophets walking through the haze,
Trying to tell us where it's at:
Wisdom talk. Who goes for that?
Wisdom poets travel worse--
Far worse when they rhyme the verse.
If you cannot say the same
About yourself: denial.
No one's here to place the blame,
No one's putting you on trial.
Just admit you're same as us,
Sitting stuck here on the bus
While the rich who you adore
Are taking limos to the door.
The politics of memory loss
Is getting my attention:
Family members getting cross
About my inattention.
The politics of memory loss
Has a sick dimension:
It's a way to get across
To courts for intervention.
Some folks counting their last days:
Bored to death; set in their ways.
I'm not there yet but forget
Last time I heard her breathe, not yet.
What is mostly on your mind?
Sex and kids and job for sure,
And for a way you can unwind.
After that a way to cure
The sickness that the human race
Has brought upon this perfect place
We call the earth, yet hope to die
To join the angels in the sky?
Because this place is far from heaven:
About to break seal number seven
To read the bad news what's in store
When we can't stop another war.
[Leave before the evening prayers,
Or we are going to kill you.]
They pack up what they can of theirs
And pray that God will get them through--
They leave the bullet with the note
Another brother Muslim wrote.
Don't pick up for Private Caller,
Or Number Unavailable.
Or Restricted. Bottom dollar--
By a stranger on the wire
Looking for another buyer.
Everything's been said,
Hear it every day;
It's echoed 'til you're dead,
Said in every way.
What's new, now, is how we take
The words we hear today and make
The mountains out of little bits
Of information one voice spits
Out to rally soldiers who
Fight to push his notions through.
What's the stick that stirs the pot
Containing our emotions--
Feeling good or not so hot?
(A stick stuck in the oceans
Of our dreams, and nightmares too.)
What's the stick that stirs that brew?
There's a layer beneath the one
I wear I've worn forever;
Made of iron threads I've spun
From good and bad together.
You can't get through, I can't get out--
Iron threads of fear and doubt.
When will you get serious--
Quit beating up your folks?
It's time that you got furious,
Instead of cracking jokes
About what's going on today--
Your world is getting blown away.
Any difference you might make
You might not see yourself.
Even with a mighty shake
The old stays on the shelf.
Not until the shelf is pulled
Down to the ground can change unfold.
He made millions for his kids--
Hotels always kept him busy.
Now, money keeps them off the skids
And mollifies each spoiled tizzy.
Today, his heirs don't have a clue--
Out doing what they want to do.
I hope I'm dead before they find
Out what I wrote of them.
Their reactions won't be kind--
It's likely they'll condemn
My life to endless days of dread--
That's why, by then, hope I'm dead.
Could be too late, we let it go
For too long to get it back.
That's the truth and we both know
Our love has had a heart attack.
It's mouth-to-mouth and all the rest--
If love survives we're truly blessed.
Life is hell, can't say it's not--
There is too much going on.
Not one life that can't be bought--
Every hero's here and gone.
We grow old, see nothing new--
Torture, slow death, sudden too.
Hieronymus Bosch, he knew full well,
Another name for earth was hell.
I get mad when I'm mistreated.
And kids can make me hopping mad.
Angry guilt-trip, I'm defeated--
Oh my God, I've been so bad.
I didn't pay attention when
I was there and should have been.
It's not fair to you
(The best years of your life)
Doing what you have to do,
Being this old man's pretty wife.
What I got him, got him killed--
Clear as 80 proof.
When he kicked back, drank and chilled,
His wife went through the roof.
He drank so much sometimes he fell,
Boredom otherwise was hell.
The least that you could ever do
Is think about it, no?
You say the world depresses you
And there's nowhere to go.
You can't escape, you might as well
Do what's right, outside your shell.
Turn dreams into reality?
Not an easy thing to do
When dreams in actuality
Are something always subject to
Conditions in the hands of those
Who determine how it goes.
I got a taste of what it's like
To feel crazy, feel depressed
When my head, stuck on a pike
In a dream one night, possessed
My thoughts on that coming morning--
Failure, guilt, an early warning.
Look what little men can do.
They can cause a world of hurt.
Weapons? Plenty. They can screw
Your life into the solid dirt.
Whether or not you're big or small,
Little men can take it all.
We're all fucked, oh yes indeed,
Even those who think they're not.
Some have theirs, and sample greed
Every chance they get. They've got
Us bound tight, a selfish grip,
Running armies they equip.
So we're fucked, oh yes we are,
Everybody just might die;
Everything has gone too far--
Thunder's rolling in the sky,
Battlefields scar up the earth.
What is all the fighting worth?
Somebody's getting rich on war.
That's what all the fighting's for.
Give me a clue what to expect--
Clues to tell me it's arrived;
A clue to tell me plaque has wrecked
A brain that cannot be revived
Before confusion's settles in--
So I can go out with a grin,
Hammer on the firing pin.
Everything I know is right,
I don't have the balls to do:
Getting up the nerve to fight
When there's a chance of getting through
The truth. No chance. We settle for
Them fighting, now, another war.
Why the ban on suicide?
I've never figured that one out.
When somebody does decide
That life's a pile of shit, why doubt
Their judgment when the Seventh Seal
Says death won't come, and hell is real.
Fear and guilt prevents us from
Deciding on our kingdom come.
You'll outlive me, and you'll tell
Them what you think of me and say
Anything you want: rebel,
Now that I've gone on my way.
Sock it to me, don't deserve
Anything, if you've the nerve.
Personal shit, I have to say
Is going to have to take back seat--
Compare it to the world today.
Unless you're suffering, it won't beat
What's going on. It's time to focus
Away from mental hokus-pokus.
We're all failures, sure we are--
Stuffed inside a cattle car.
I took a psyche test yesterday,
On my personality.
Weren't going to hire a freak, no way.
But in all reality
The test was just a test of wits:
Putting in whatever fits.
I've never, ever, had a kiss
In my life to match that dream.
Something's definitely amiss--
Her tongue slid deep smooth as cream.
The dream was real, the kiss was not--
I woke to passions her kiss brought.
My wife will naturally ask me who,
But I'm too old to care.
You'd think I would have kept it to
Myself and never share
The story when I have a wife
Who I'm going to love for life.
Boredom kills me every day,
But no way it has a say
In my life, I'm going to do
What it takes to make it through:
A taste of this, a line of that,
The cures for boredom I've down pat.
We're in hell, I'm sure of that,
Life on earth is living hell.
From homeless to aristocrat--
Even children, they can tell
This is hell, and it's all wrong--
Weak can see it, so do strong.
But rich and strong survive the strife,
The rest of us will suffer life.
Drugs and booze can buffer me,
Blinding me to what I see.
Too scared and weak to stand up to
The bold and strong who're going to do
All they can to see the day
That they control our life their way.
Doing drugs to just get high
Is doings of a selfish fool.
They're chemicals you can rely
On, done right, as a useful tool.
Drugs weren't made to make you strange.
They help you work to make a change.
Stay up, dig in, look inside
And catch what daily life would hide.
Revelations: Seventh Seal
Says you'll want to die but can't.
They'll torture you, you'll never feel
Mercy that your God could grant.
They'll torture you until you die--
You'll live forever pleading, why?
Extraordinary rendition is what the United States is practicing--capturing terrorist suspects and sending them to other countries (Egypt, for example) to be tortured to get information. Their torturers won't let them die, though those being tortured wish they would. The Bible talks about it, specifically Revelations 9:6
In those days people will seek death, and will in no way find it. They will desire to die, and death will flee from them.
I left for an obligation
As the party just got started.
My students greeting graduation
Partied before they all departed.
I left the party and was hugged
By a co-ed who unplugged
The pipe of fantasies I kept
Tightly capped 'cept when I slept.
Suicide. Why did he do it?
What tortured him and drove him to it?
His business was a great success.
An honored vet but nonetheless
He committed suicide--
And stunned friends who learned how he died.
He left his fortune to his nieces
He'd adopted--left in pieces.
Thirteen pages of shit,
Maybe I should quit--
Quit being such a doggerel pest
And give my suffering friends a rest.
What are you thinking as you fall
Asleep at night? A fantasy?
A possibility you recall?
Now it's your reality
Providing fuel to hidden fires
To satisfy deep down desires?
Condemned to tell the truth it seems--
He's losing friends both left and right.
He's left alone with all his dreams
Of what it takes to win the fight
For justice: every opportunist
Gets in the way of real change.
He makes the call, dead-eye harpoonist--
Tagging those who rearrange
Reality to reach their goals.
Harpoons them good, they kick and scream
As he drags them over coals.
What is more, he'll further ream
Their ass if they won't quit their scam.
They hate him--think he gives a damn?
Got Alzheimer's, I can lie
And tell her that I just forgot.
She won't bother ask me why
And lets me get away with lot
Of shit I didn't do for her--
I'm a dog and there's no cure.
And it's said I'll be excused
For grabbing ass--I'm just confused.
You pressed the bills onto my hand,
Felt fingertips that laid the coins,
Watching as you let them land--
I felt stirring in my loins;
And that was it--I grabbed my beer.
My priorities were clear.
Don't see hope much for this world
And don't get pleasure out of it.
Had more fun the times I've hurled
Chunks after taking in its shit.
You seldom win the times you try
Unless you steal, cheat or lie.
Someone I would gently hold,
Someone who could hold me tight,
Left before I got too old
To help her make it through the night.
She did it out of love, you see,
She was thinking just of me.
I'm old as dirt, a memory test
Was recommended by my wife.
I tend to do what she'll suggest--
And Alzheimer's a fact of life.
Doctor checks how my brain handles
Recall, giving words to me:
Gives me apple, water, sandals.
She'll later check my memory
For apple, sandals, water.
Apple: that relates to Eve--
The Almighty's only daughter;
From Eden, dressed, she had to leave;
Walked in sandals; who on water?
Took sins back from earth's first daughter?
I kiss you softly on your lips.
My fingers leave your cheek caressed
As my hands slip to your hips--
My tongue making its request
Of tender lips to see if they
Will let my tongue inside to play.
How am I going to take my mind
Off you since you squeezed my hand?
I'm looking now to try to find
A way to blend in what's unplanned--
Include you in my life instead
Of letting love hang by a thread.
My kids are saying, act my age.
My teenage grand-kids blurt out, yuck,
Expecting me to be the sage--
Old man doesn't give a fuck.
My siblings? Hey, don't even ask.
They visit me behind a mask.
There's so much I want to tell you:
A million reasons why I can't.
Teach me how I can get through
So I'm just not another plant
You need to water once in a while--
Teach me how to make you smile.
Escape to feeling good, not deal
With something bad you'll never change;
Take something so you can feel
Better instead of down and strange.
Of course you know that it won't last--
But you escaped and had a blast.
Longed for a kiss before I went,
She knew that I was going to go.
Before my last brain cell was spent
She kissed me so to let me know
I was still alive and had
Something yet to make her glad.
Watching seconds on the clock
Sweeping time beneath the rug;
Hours 'til I get to walk
Out the door and finally shrug
Off the bosses' oversight--
To lift my head and walk upright.
This isn't about my present job, I'm privileged to have the job I have now. But I've worked plenty of jobs where I've felt like that, and I have co-workers here who feel the same. BUT there is a large wall clock with a second hand right across from where I sit....
You're not liking this world much,
Looking for ways to escape.
But every way is just crutch,
Or simply insulating tape.
And none of it will do a thing
Much beyond the needle's sting.
Wishing both of us were single;
Wish I'd met you long ago.
Fact and fantasy commingle--
The future only time will show.
See, I'm shy, and I act out--
Writing's so anonymous.
I can cry and I can shout,
Getting on or off the bus.
I write it, hey, a fantasy,
No sir, no way was it me.
Not worth saving--took some time--
But nothing that's worth saving.
His writing didn't earn a dime--
All the time the family's shaving
Comfort, sometimes it got hard.
He tried, but never was the bard.
You don't want to let me out
Despite the pain I'm in?
You protest, pretend and pout
Until you finally win
Control of aspects of my life.
Christ--worse even than my wife.
I'm a judge because I don't.
People talk to me.
I stay neutral and I won't
Condemn or disagree.
But if you ask, I'll tell you what
I think is going to kick your butt.
Want education? Read a book--
Get up off your lazy ass.
If you can't read, then better hook,
Soon, up with a reading class.
Education's in the words;
Crying poor-mouth's for the birds.
If you can't get it, you can bet
You'll find it on the Internet.
If you don't have it, you can find
It anywhere--make up your mind.
Oh, but we all pay for war--
That's why we all get no care.
Ben Franklin starts insurance for
Our welfare--no longer there.
The look that's caught and runs away--
Caught by someone else's eyes,
Has a ton of stuff to say--
Piles of stuff escape denies.
But it was caught, and she knows what
You're thinking--either breasts or butt.
Calls you whore because he knows
You'd have any man you wanted;
Your allure from eyes to toes
Is one condition that has haunted
His self esteem--he knows he can't
Squash yours like he would some ant.
That would be a big mistake,
Hooking up with him like that.
Getting caught you'll never shake
Off the anger from the rat
Who drove you to it: think again--
Put more planning into when.
Thought I'd do the world some good
Coming up with stuff I wrote;
Turns out nothing I wrote stood
Out enough to be a quote.
Either I was just too dumb,
Or too lazy too become
Someone who could lay it out--
Saying what it's all about.
People trying to explain
Away the different classes,
Think we must have half a brain
To believe those from the masses
Have a chance to ever change
What's cooking on the kitchen range.
The menu's fixed, you're getting beans--
Gourmet's for those with the means.
James Beard was an American chef and food writer. He died years ago, 1985. I worked in a restaurant in Berkeley called the Fourth Street Grill as a coffee bartender, their first one actually, in 1979. The Fourth Street Grill was a spin-off from Chez Panisse. Chez Panisse was and is a Berkeley restaurant known as the birthplace of California cuisine, a style credited to its co-founder, Alice Waters. The chef and hostess from Chez Panisse, Mark Miller, and I can't remember the hostess's name, found some financial backing, and left Chez Panisse to start the Fourth Street Grill with the blessings of Alice Walker.
When I was hired, prior to the installation of some equipment, they asked me what kind of espresso machine they should install. Should they buy one where you pumped a handle to send the steam through the espresso coffee, or an automatic one where you just pushed a button? I was trained on one where you pumped a handle to release the steam. The guy who trained me thought the automatic machines were crap. He had been trained by an Italian who introduced espresso/coffee bars to Berkeley in the 60's (I was told). With the automatic machines there was no way to vary the taste. Some liked it strong, others liked it sweet (yes, espresso can be sweet in a sense), and the number of pumps you gave the handle could determine that. Or so he said. I was a coffee bartender for too little time to really know.
James Beard, the restaurant critic, knew Alice Waters, the "founder" of California cuisine, and thought she was a great chef. He knew that Mark Miller, Chez Panisse's chef, had left to start the Fourth Street Grill and came to have dinner to write a revue. After dinner, he ordered an espresso, and I made it. I have no idea if he liked it. End of story. I came back to visit 6 months after I'd quit, and the manager begged me to come back. I say "begged" because he actually got down on his knees. He wasn't serious, he was hamming it up, but desperate to find someone who could make a good cup of espresso with the goddamn espresso machine you had to pump. I'm sure the Fourth Street Grill traded it in for a machine like you see at Starbucks.
A person's on my mind, of late--
Someone I will never know.
Hopes, however, will lie in wait,
And my heart is set to go.
His touch is torture, feelings false--
She dares not tell him how it is.
She's crazy, though, to let him waltz
Through her life like it was his.
If you don't ask, I seldom talk.
Guess that's just the way I am.
Seen, not heard, are words that stalk
Me--parents didn't give a damn
About what I might have to say.
It's still with me to this day.
Your voice on the telephone
Is different from yours face to face.
You let go, the depth and tone
Almost makes me want to brace
Myself against the ringing words--
Face to face: sweet song of birds.
I don't need to read it, hear it,
To know what's going on;
I know the system and I fear it
So much my hopes are gone.
Don't need to read or hear the facts--
Class rule was born to spawn such acts.
Finally got myself a clue:
She builds me up and runs around
My hopes and dreams. And when she's through
She'll run around with muscle bound
Or powerful men. She loves me lots--
But I'm not giving her the hots.
I think the playwright, Arthur Miller, was Marilyn Monroe's 3rd husband after the baseball player Joe DiMaggio. JFK was her last lover, though rumor has it Bobby had a go at her. Miller wrote the screenplay for the last movie Monroe was in, The Misfits. It was a movie with Clark Gable about rounding up wild horses, misfits, for dog meat. But this rhyme could be all wrong. Maybe Miller cooled to her, first. I wouldn't doubt it, she didn't seem to have a passion for politics and justice that Miller had. Or maybe she did. She had lived the life that Miller could only write about. Maybe she discovered him to be a pretender.
You're feeling blue, prefer to sit
Deep off the continental shelf.
Accept the love, you dumb-ass shit,
And stop beating up yourself.
There's someone there who cares for you
No matter what you choose to do.
No one expects from you a thing--
Just open up to what will bring
The truth about another lie.
Quit sneering at the ones who try
To make things better for us all--
Get out of the way and let it fall.
Gotta get drunk or stoned or both
To say out loud what's on your mind;
So soft you'd think you took an oath
While sober, you would turn a blind
Eye to all what's going on--
Stoned and every blinder's gone.
So simple minded you think race
Makes a difference in your sight.
You're white but poor, and have to face
A world gone wrong--decide to fight
Against the races in your life
While you're beating down your wife.
Tense becomes her supple spine--
The engine purrs into the drive;
Keys crash loudly by design
To jangle nerves, but she'll survive--
Sits up in bed, turns on the light,
She fakes a smile--another night.
So many people thinking war,
Stock Market, gangsters, migrants, or
Welfare moms and homeless poor,
Fearful sister sidewalk whore,
And sluts on sand who sport a thong
Are good reasons life's gone wrong--
Big and real as King Kong.
It's been the system all along
That's been the thug that kicks our ass,
And will, while there's a ruling class.
Yes, there're issues we should fight;
Yes, we're faced with wrong and right.
Yes, there're things that we can change.
But if we only rearrange
Appearances, then nothing goes
Beyond the latest change of clothes.
Two things plumbers need to know:
Shit stinks, water runs downhill.
After that they're set to go--
And you'll hate the plumber's bill.
Carpenters, they bask in glory--
Jesus was one, end of story.
It's like the soul drifts through the brain
Until it finds a cogent thought;
Expresses it from memory lane--
Telling us what time forgot.
The soul will try to make some sense
Of this old world that's so intense.
What an ego! But repressed,
Surely making me insane.
I dawdle, doodle, then I rest,
And trip on thoughts inside my brain.
And I believe that it's all true,
But lordy, I don't have a clue--
I don't seem to realize
Just how much my ego lies.
One day I might act on one thought
And then just wind up getting caught.
If there's a man who thinks you're fat,
And you're in love with him,
You don't want a man like that.
Men who're true don't need you trim.
What you need's a man who'll be
Free from judging looks they see.
Summertime: played in the woods,
Built our forts in trees, and down
On the ground, any place we could--
Material scavenged from around
The railroad tracks and building sites--
We claimed our forts by squatters' rights.
Grew up and that nesting pleasure
Lasted but a short time when
It vanished with the childhood leisure--
Could not afford to nest again--
More than enough to just survive.
Childhood nests: a tease test drive.
The road to hell
Is a piece of my own,
The folks walk by
And lost dogs moan.
I'm hungry and stoned--
I know full well
Those on the streets
Are shipped to hell.
The suits pass by,
They're right on time--
No time for change,
Won't drop a dime.
I scratch my name
Down in the dirt,
They step on it
But it don't hurt.
Between the trips
From here to there,
Their lips might smile
But they don't care.
I don't know where,
I can't say when,
But when they're gone
We're born again.
Boredom is the cause
And freedom is the cure;
Freedom from oppressive laws,
And substances that lure
You from doing no matter what:
It's all combined to kick your butt.
The guy is looking for a friend,
The boy is looking for a girl;
Won't find them if he'll never bend--
Grain tight as a redwood burl.
May be polished, may shine bright,
But lacking company, come tonight.
Being held in your embrace,
Nuzzling at your nipple;
Slide down and I press my face
To your belly--feelings ripple
Through my flesh and body, I've
You to thank that I'm alive.
I promise this time not to come
On so fast and furious;
Give me the chance to not be dumb--
Play with you, not be so curious
About where this is going to lead
Or talk about how much I need
To melt into your flesh 'til I
Convince your heart that I'm the guy.
The tears came down as drifters begged--
Believe me, though, I had them pegged.
My eyes were dry, I knew full well
The roots they had went straight to hell.
Fucking coward, a total shit,
As I'm watching people die.
I see it on the news and sit
Back and watch the bullets fly.
I take a hit and hold my breath--
I do nothing. Scared to death.
I have no ego, got no shame, (ZEN)
Have nobody I can blame. (ZEN)
I don't care what people think, (ZEN)
Cross words barely make me blink. (ZEN)
I'm selfish and a total whore-- (OPPORTUNIST)
Don't know what a backbone's for. (BOTH)
I've got friends who're sitting high;
Also friends in lower places.
Got it covered, think that I
Have even covered empty bases.
But no one's safe, what happens now
Depends on who next has a cow.
Tell your story, goddamn bitch--
See if your friends scratch that itch.
I did nothing to you that
Was more than from a de-clawed cat.
So I yelled. Get off my back,
When will you give me some slack?
They're just words--bad feelings go
Away fast as the words we take
Back and let good feelings flow
Back into that shallow lake
We call a life together, and
Stand beside it hand in hand.
The life we have where no one shares
Makes another rich man fat.
They're not helping, no one cares--
Everybody's feeling that.
No resources, what's left to do
Except call in the wrecking crew.
You fucked her--now think: not for you.
She'd decided you're the one
Way before you fucked. Can't screw
A woman and decide you're done--
Most don't give it up that easy.
Men are dogs--tend to be sleazy.
Women, when they let you in
Are committed to begin.
I can see how you once were
And that is what I'm going to see
Undressing you. So let me stir
Up passions like it used to be.
Yes, we're old and bodies fail--
But memory tells another tale.
I'm not in it for the money,
I'm looking for a quick solution.
I'm unhappy, so's my honey,
And it'll take a revolution
To change what troubles us so much.
Big money puts you out of touch.
Linus Torvaldes grew up on his grandfather's knee, watching him write computer programs--computer software. Torvaldes' father was an award winning Helsinki journalist and a card carrying communist who was into sports. Linus was into computers, and his mother was permissive enough to let him stay in his room with his computer writing code as long as he wanted, 16 hours a day sometimes. I'm guessing his mother was the daughter of his grandfather who taught him how to write code.
His folks had divorced by the time he was in college. He was in graduate school in Helsinki--computer science, of course--when he'd finally saved enough money to buy a computer, a powerful PC for $3000. If I remember right, he put it together himself. This was in 1990. He wanted an operating system for his computer that was as fast and powerful as the one he used in college--UNIX. He didn't want MS Windows. He was a programmer and wanted to use his computer for programming and accessing the Internet (this was before the browser and the World Wide Web). Windows was crap compared to UNIX. (Still is.) Problem was: it would cost nearly $10,000 to install a UNIX operating system on his computer. So he decided to write a UNIX-like operating system on his own.
The guts of an operating system is called the kernel. The kernel manages memory and the file system. Around the kernel is what's called the shell. It communicates with the kernel to get it to do your stuff, like run programs and access and update files. What you see when you're on the computer is the shell--Windows XP for example.
There was an organization at the time Linus Torvaldes bought his first computer called the Free Software Foundation that had been around for years. It was started by Richard Stallman who once worked at the Artificial Intelligence lab at MIT. He quit his job there when he couldn't get the proprietor that owned the UNIX operating system to give him the source code so he could fix a flaw in the system. Source code is written by programmers and compiled by computers to produce a program or application. When the programmers are sloppy, like they are at Microsoft, they produce bugs that can lock up or bring down the system, as well as a myriad of other problems. Stallman was a hippie/socialist and thought computer software should be shared, which meant sharing the source code as well--so that it could be improved or fixed when it didn't work right by anybody who could read the source code and could firgure out a solution.
The Free Software Foundation which Stallman founded, produced UNIX applications, shells, utilities and programs that were free to download from the Internet. Stallman and his associates wanted to produce a complete UNIX-like system. He was saving the kernel for last, developing the shell and the utilities for UNIX first, because writing the code for the kernel was so complex. The FSF had been working on the kernel for over a year when Linus Torvaldes put on the Internet the source code he had written for the UNIX kernel, inviting the Internet community to compile it, try it out and offer suggestions for improvement. This was in 1991. He didn't want any money for it. Small wonder. His dad was a communist and though he never got into sports like his dad, he adopted some of his other sensibilities.
The Internet community picked up on Torvaldes' kernel and some started producing and marketing a full-blown operating system out of it, using many of the Free Software Foundation's applications and utilities to go with Torvaldes kernel. This new UNIX-like operating became known as LINUX, over Linus Torvaldes objections. It can't be called UNIX because that name is copyrighted.
By the way, the first large software project that Bill Gates' Microsoft produced before they got into DOS and Windows was a UNIX operating system called Xenix. Back in the 1970's there was a network of computer groups called the Home Brew Computer Clubs in Silicon Valley and elsewhere. The members were into hardware and software, and shared copies of the software and computer design. They put out a newsletter for several years and in one they published a letter from Bill Gates which lambasted the practice of sharing software. Big surprise.
There have always been those who believe that software should be shared, Richard Stallman and Linus Torvaldes are among many who agree. Those UNIX programmers who share that belief came together to form the GNU Project where they produce software under what's called a General Public License. The GPL stipulates that you can sell your software for whatever price you can get, but you must provide copies of the source code. You cannot stop anyone from making copies of it, nor stop them from modifying it and selling it again. GNU stands for Gnu Not Unix, a recursive hack for the fun of it. GNU produces UNIX software, but again, the UNIX name is copyrighted.
The Chinese government refused to use Windows for their government networks because Microsoft would not provide them with the source code. The Chinese wanted to check it for "back doors" that would allow foreign agents to access their computers. So they use Linux.
The Department of Defense has recently switched from a UNIX operating system called Solaris (from SUN Microsystems) to a version of Linux called RedHat. The operating system they purchased from RedHat is a suped-up version of Linux that can handle the DoD's computer data processing, networking and security needs. RedHat sold it to them at a price well over $20,000, but the DoD can make as many copies as they need. In other words, it was virtually free. A friend of mine downloaded the same operating system from the Internet for nothing. It took all night, but didn't cost her a dime. World-wide, Linux shares over 10% of the market for desktop operating systems and is growing. Linux runs on mainframes and mid-range computers as well. And by the way, it doesn't get viruses.
This phenomenon of sharing source code and software is called the Open Source "movement"--some go as far as to say "revolution". Bill Gates worries about it. Anybody hawking information, worries about it--especially book publishers. The Internet is the road by which it travels and may well be the means to bring equality and democracy to the world, perhaps even the United States.
Linus Torvaldes, still a young man, is not rich. He has a full-time job working for a computer hardware developer in the Bay Area where he lives with his wife and two daughters. He's made no money off the UNIX/Linux kernel he developed (and is still developing). There is a story, which sounds doubtful, that Torvaldes was offered $10 million to be a member of the board of directors of a Linux developer in London. He turned it down. A good man--whether or not the story is true.
He did buy some stock in some of the Linux companies and might have made money from them. I myself, a Linux fan since 1996, bought $300 worth of stock in Redhat, one of the many flavors of Linux. I sold it five years later for $1500. (Blush, O.K., that makes me a capitalist.)
Give me a sign when I get bad--
Don't humor me or patronize;
Don't worry, you can't make me sad--
Sad for me is hearing lies
About me when I should prepare
For changes that are in the air.
Sucker for women--way too much--
I die for them. A shrink might say:
Didn't get much of mother's touch.
Who cares? The past is gone. Today
A woman fills my dreams and life--
A hen-pecked husband to my wife.
You're in my dreams, not like before
When we were fucking on the floor
Or kitchen tables--dreams these nights
Are coming from those inner heights
You have when you view from above
The depth of your subconscious love.
Deny yourself the bigger sins,
Deny them 'til it hurts.
On the day temptation wins
Is when the pleasure flirts
With your fate--could bring you down,
Ending up deep in the ground.
No fear means your brain has shrunk--
There's much to be afraid about.
Fear not meant my judgment stunk,
But always lucky to get out
Of it alive, I could be dead,
But shrunken brain inside my head
Missed the situation and
Good luck was my helping hand.
Missed the situation while
Good luck keeps me in denial.
You keep working for the bennies,
Though there're things you'd rather do;
Can't retire saving pennies
And no one's looking out for you--
No stacks of money or piles of gold--
The dreams you had, like you, got old.
If I could find a buzz that's all
As good as that from alcohol
I'd give it up--the buzz from booze
Is counting on brain cells you lose.
But I don't want a substitute
That you drop or toot or shoot.
Might not be bad but good sense flees
And stats say your brain atrophies.
I need a buzz but I don't think
I'll get it going to a shrink.
I've been told if I will search
I'll get one from a mosque or church.
I don't think so, I'm up tight
Although they try to make things right.
The buzz I've longed for all these years
Is one that wipes away the tears
For good, and maybe I'm a dreamer,
(Pedestrian praying for a Beemer)
But the buzz that lasts for good
Are friendships from the neighborhood.
But neighborhoods, these days, are gone--
It's alienation's going on.
So, what to do? I need a buzz.
Don't ask why, it's just because.
Muslim terrorists, you know, were once
Sure allies in the fight against
The communists. So put a dunce
Cap on the those who thought they fenced
Off the godless communists--
Hiring sick fundamentalists
Defending god-fearing capitalists.
A dream of mine is someday find
Someone to explain my mind;
To tell me why it thinks that I
Am right or wrong and wonder why
I don't have the answers to
Why I do the things I do.
Or is that weak and double-speak--
A sudden savior who I seek?
I'd love to spend my life with you
But I don't have much time;
You've got years ahead to do
Much more--I can't make the climb.
Don't hook up with this old fart.
I'd love to but don't have the heart.
Of course if I'd some dough, say HEY--
We'd spend it 'til my dying day.
I tied the knot myself that holds
These pages bound together.
Square knot to what life unfolds
With course thread to weather
Pages turned--should I be blessed
They're turned at all before I rest.
You asked me if I felt some pain--
The pleasure was exquisite.
Not something that I could explain--
Or else be my last visit.
You're the doctor, after all.
Young and pretty, sweet and bright.
This exam had been your call,
A slender finger up a tight
Passage probing for a sign.
Oh my god, I'm such a perv--
But hope to live 'til ninety-nine
To remember every nerve
You touched in me--the pain was slight,
The pleasure visits dreams at night.
Fantasy is where I live--
Treats me better than my life.
Fantasy is where I give
Up so I avoid the strife,
Satisfying hopes I have.
Fantasy: the dreamer's salve.
O.K., Lorelie, tell me where
We are now and where it's going.
Don't be shy because I care
About you having trouble showing
Me enough to know that I
Might have a chance for Lorelie.
I drink something and I write,
There're plenty stories in a drink;
Take tokes so I'm sitting tight--
Long enough so I can think.
Then again, that could be rot--
Drinks and smoke are all I've got.
You read my rhyme, no senses flinched--
In fact you smiled a wicked smile
As the meter carefully inched
The distance of a lusty mile.
That, to me, says everything
About you--now my rhymes will sing.
I found the woman of my dreams
Thirty years too late.
Was not about to suffer schemes
To doctor up my fate.
She was thirty years too young--
I dream of songs we might have sung.
So vulnerable and so afraid,
She looks into your steady eyes
Expecting all you want's get laid--
Hoping that your words aren't lies.
You, yourself, believing, no--
Don't believe you'd stoop so low.
Is that a sign you're going to die?
Thoughts of women all the time?
All the time, I can't deny
It's all the same as in my prime.
I'm so old but thoughts are young,
And women slipping off my tongue.
I lay my head upon your lap,
Breaking down in tears;
You knew that I was going to snap--
You stroke away my fears.
My refuge and I feel complete--
Surrender to smells of your heat.
Lying naked in your arms--
So much love and no more shame.
Lying naked, your heart charms
My ghosts to rest, I'm lying lame
Beneath your breath, warm in your soul--
In your arms, becoming whole
By your reflection on the pain
That no one else let me explain.
You're a ghost to loneliness--
If only we could meet again.
Fate says not a chance, but yes,
Inside often wonder when
We might meet again at last--
I'd die, my heart would beat so fast.
Lay your body on the table,
Put your feet up in the stirrups;
Lips and tongue as soft as sable
Will be stirring up the syrups
To sweeten what my doctor's due
If you'll let me take care of you.
Small annoyance. You can swat
Them dead. But there's a lot--
And like mosquito clouds you've fought,
Very few of them get caught.
There's deet or poison you can pour,
We've all been down that road before;
Mosquitoes, though, they know of more
Ways to get through 'til they score.
Not a smart man, but I see,
The world is stupid crazy.
With so much, the few will be
Greedy, mean and lazy.
The rest of us get by because,
Stupid is what stupid does.
Form and Content: Form sure wins--
We're so much in love with show;
And Content won't forgive our sins,
Form is how we let them go.
While sins are laying at our feet,
Our pride survives on Form's conceit.
I'm wanting you to save my life
'Cuz I don't fucking care.
A burden men put on a wife
When there is nothing there.
I'm afraid I might smell bad,
She said as I went south;
Every women I've known's had
Those doubts until my mouth
Sooths away the trepidation--
Smoothing out the sweet elation.
Can't wait 'til the kids grow up
So I can go out--when I want;
'Til then, there when they throw up,
And when the closet monsters haunt;
I'm there for them, I'm here for you
Because you're crying for me too.
"If we've the courage and resolve..."
Fuck, what kind of talk is that?
Courage to slaughter and involve
Allies, promising them all fat
Spoils from imperialism,
Combating yet another "ism"?
Nixon fell. For four short years
We got a liberal who embarrassed
All the other libs to tears
While exhibiting the rarest
Of sensitivity to our needs.
On sensitive the cutthroat feeds.
Not scared--wary. Wary. Cold.
So beautiful she's had to hide
From predators since 12 years old--
It's what it took to keep her pride.
Too many men won't let her be--
And Sweetie never has felt free
To be all what she could with me.
About, I'd say, exciting as
The San Diego weather--
One more celebrity who has
No cause to stay together
With another mate--now gone--
We all express a mighty yawn.
Talks non-stop, inquiring mind
Bottled up by circumstance;
Talks in order to unwind
From bullets that have made her dance
Through life with autistic kid--
No longer with his ass-hole dad.
I can't believe the things she did
To hang on to the things she had.
Keeps clunker running on her own--
A patient friend had taught her what
She needed to get by alone
Though doing it would kick her butt.
She perseveres and she won't stop
Until the day she gets on top.
Eyes locked, said I made her wet.
I said I'd like to swim in it.
She smiled, told me, no, not yet.
First need to know a little bit
About you more than just your name.
I'm a dog, don't feel the same.
My body tells me that I'm dying.
I can't stop my thoughts from going
On and on and I'd be lying
To deny my interest's growing
In the pleasures of the flesh.
My body's old, my thoughts are fresh--
Oh, so fresh, face would be slapped
If ever my thoughts were unwrapped.
Work's becoming your home when
Home's not taking care of you.
Giving up what might have been
Because the bird of goodness flew
Out the window from your home--
Decided it was going to roam.
When you finally learn to love
You're seeing far beneath the looks:
Your eyes are peeling off the glove
Drawn by magazines and books,
Television, movies and
Workplace chatter--all baloney--
Shallow lines drawn in the sand.
Blown away by time like phony
Ads that try to make you buy
Eye candy leaving you with crap
You couldn't see 'cuz you were high
On how it looked. Don't be a sap--
Buying it for its appeal,
To learn the deal wasn't real.
May you see places
It lightly snows--
And birds of paradise
Fly up your nose.
May you have friends
To share the high--
Dusting off mirrors
Until you die.
Fortunate to get the flash
Of what could be, if you were free--
Could be heroin, could be hash
Or situation--makes you see
A dream, and then you let it down
Going to your job downtown.
Blow up, give in. He's a jerk
And you're not getting what you want.
He won't let you do your work,
While you're letting blow-ups haunt
Your dreams--dreaming of success
Of getting your world from this mess.
Why are you afraid of me?
There's nothing I could do to you,
Except to maybe let you see
A mirror revealing what you do.
I'm no different, but I know
What a mirror is going to show.
That's good, sweetheart, think of me,
Though we'll always be apart.
I'll keep you going, always be
A thought to occupy your heart.
There's not much more that I could give--
Don't live the life you want to live.
She sings--she knows all the words.
I'm inside but I could be
In the forest with the birds
Hearing their sweet melody
The times I hear her lift her voice--
My thoughts and heart meet to rejoice.
Each and any one would do.
Apart and lonely prospects tease
Your mind until you think that you
Could satisfy your fantasies--
If you could catch a single breeze.
Will Robinson, there's danger there--
It won't turn out like you've dreamed.
It's going to blow up everywhere--
No life left to be redeemed.
You're confusing wrong as right--
Leave her to your dreams at night.
Not been touched in, oh, so long--
The hand that touched my shoulder sends
Signals it's O.K., do wrong
And become much more than friends.
Why not--long as no one knows,
And God's not keeping on her toes?
Warriors propagating faith
Kill the disbelievers.
Seventh Seal? They're on their eighth--
It opened to deceivers.
True believers never get
What's still driving history yet.
War and faith--supreme bullshit--
Economics fosters it.
Gossip's real as anything
That we ever get from news;
Closer to us, songbirds sing,
Sharing--someone's paying dues.
Gossips. So? They know the truth--
Every one a first rate sleuth.
TV news tell only stories
That make it to their inventories.
Tell me I'm the only one
Who dreams of possibilities,
Convince me, I'll give up the fun
I brought about by fantasies.
If you're right, I'll gladly shoot
Myself before your last salute.
In your struggle for the top,
All your whining's got to stop.
Don't count on me to pull you up,
Don't pretend you're just a pup.
You've got legs, so use them then--
If you don't make it, try again.
But stop the whining, it won't get
You anywhere so try some sweat.
I'm the one not listening,
I'm listening instead
To suffering and the christening
Name calling in my head:
Prepare to die yet strive to soar--
God will even up the score.
If you thought what we did bad,
Then call me now, the devil.
We made love, it made you sad,
But tell me on the level--
Are you sad because we did
It when the candles burned
While the light of day forbids
The act when light's returned?
Who am I to damn such light?
Though it takes you far from me.
I'd rather live without my sight
Then ever have to see
Daylight take what seems so good--
Leaving hearts misunderstood.
Congress men and women put
No thought where they put their foot:
In their mouth. They make believe
Their words of wisdom will achieve
The force to settle history.
It still remains a mystery
Why people think that Congress can
Ever put through such a plan.
A friend told me to look up cretinism on Wikipedia and scroll down to this:
The term parliamentary cretinism was introduced by Marx. According to Marx, parliamentary cretinism "confines its victims to an imaginary world and robs them of their senses, their recollection, all knowledge of the rude external world." Friedrich Engels wrote that it refers to the belief that a simple majority in one's national legislature has the power to direct the future of the whole world in all matters, and even to delimit historical causality authoritatively. Lenin used it to criticize those who avoided revolution in the streets for the leftist party project of gaining such a majority.
Hear Gabriel's horn
But feel the scorn
Of youngsters from a different age.
The book is worn,
Dog-eared and torn
Though I can stand by every page.
But some aren't buying books these days
And choose to wander through the haze.
I'm quiet, dull, a perfect sap
For the dynamo energy pap--
They lift me up and make my day.
Inevitably they pull away,
Leaving me with dreams that yearn
For the day they might return
And once again make senses burn.
Your eyes lock, you keep it brief--
Don't get crazy, let it go:
You're looking at a world of grief--
Don't be letting feelings show.
You're flirting with disaster, here--
But, oh, those eyes held you so dear.
You say you miss me. Missing what?
I'm here, same as ever.
You can say you love me, but
I can say you never
Figured out how much I need
To see that you can also bleed.
Put some distance in between
Your tortured mind and feeling,
With alcohol and methedrine,
So's not to be revealing
To yourself you're hanging on
To love, if that, that's long since gone.
You won't listen to anyone,
Idiot folks determined that.
Unless the talk's a bigger gun,
Advice you get you treat like scat--
Shit you're angry someone shared.
Your parents failed to show they cared--
But anger proves that you're not scared.
If you're opposed you're well prepared--
With a proverbial baseball bat--
To treat opponents like a rat.
Since dropping down falopian
Tubes to meet the scrambling seed,
I was born utopian:
Grew up never to concede
That we can't fix it all, one day,
Before we blow ourselves away.
What are you wearing, sexy thing?
I called you just to ask.
Less is better, and does it cling?
Can I come over so to bask
In your beauty and your charms--
Perhaps lie naked in your arms?
Fall in love, that's not so tough.
It's easy, but it makes you pray;
A glance, a touch, more than enough
For getting through another day:
The heart beats on--words on it carved
"This vessel is forever starved."
Drawn from memory, might not be good
Enough to get the gist of it.
The heart beats calmer--understood--
No longer in the midst of it.
But feelings long since cooled down--
Memories stalk a phantom town.
Vincent Van Gogh admired the more successful painter (at the time), Paul Gauguin, and they lived together for a few months in Arles, mid-southern France. Van Gogh never painted from memory as Gauguin often did, who not only painted from memory but from fantasy as well. He encouraged Van Gogh to do the same. Van Gogh couldn't bring himself to do it too often--for him it had to be real, he had to see and feel the weariness, sadness of someone; or splendor of the sunflowers, or the sight of crows scared from a cornfield. Van Gogh and Gauguin got into a fight one night, not their first, and Van Gogh cut off part of his ear and gave it to a prostitute they both frequented. Afterwards he committed himself to an asylum and spent many months there. Not too long after he got out, on July 27, 1890 he shot himself with a pistol--out by a cornfield where he had been painting. He died a day or so later. They say he was given the pistol to scare the crows from the corn so he could catch them in flight. Perhaps it wasn't suicide, perhaps he was a klutz. When he died, he'd sold but a single painting through his brother, an art dealer. Months after Vincent died, his brother Theo died--of syphilis. His brother and wife had most of Vincent's paintings--hundreds of them. After Theo died, his widow was told by art critics to trash them. She didn't. Ten, fifteen years later they started to sell.
I don't care much any more--
There it is, I wrote it out;
No longer need to be the whore
Driven by the scourge of doubt
To make work of what I do best--
Pleasure's mine, fill in the rest.
What happens making all the guns
The powers sell to men?
Men die, women are the ones
Who suffer for it when
Men take it out on them when they
Can't make the powers go away.
The crush I had became a rock,
Sisyphus says you have a lock--
I'll always be in love with you,
Though there's nothing I can do
To make it so you'd choose to be
With me and that's all right with me
As long as I can have a chance
To catch another flirty glance--
Some words from you; a wink; a smile
Lifts my spirits up a while.
The world is bigger
Than one small mind--
No way to fill it in.
No one's a nigger
Unless you find
You're ashamed of skin--
Or because you're on the floor,
Afraid of those you're working for.
People no longer choose to think--
Too busy scrambling to the brink;
We're getting dumber by the day,
And we ourselves are in the way
Of making changes that we need:
With software and computer speed
And Internet, without a gun,
Our forefathers would have won
The revolution overnight--
Wouldn't even been a fight.
There are very few of you--
But you think you're like everyone;
Every little thing you do,
You think that's the way it's done
Because you never have to see
How it's to live in poverty.
The press and networks earn no cash
From sponsors if it's them they trash.
They're bought and sold and tell the news
That satisfies their sponsor's views.
Alarming when I couldn't set
The microwave, alarmed my wife;
After trying four times let
Her do it for me--so goes life
When you get old and plaque sets in
And simple tasks cause you chagrin.
Something to fight and maybe die
For--give you a reason to live.
More often than not a total lie
Is expecting you to give
Up your life to satisfy
Greed and someone else's high.
Countries die so some can live
A life of power and luxury.
In their right mind, who'd forgive
The ownership of industry
That survives consuming those
Who live a life they never chose
And fight a war to benefit
The few who make them suffer it?
The first line in the rhyme I got from an unfinished novel by Irene Nemirovsky. Actually, I got the line from the appendix to the novel, which was comprised of notes to herself about how the novel should go. The line was, "...and we don't want to see that it is society that is dying so the tyrants can live."
She wrote the novel, Suite Francaise, between 1940-41 in occupied France. She was born in the Ukraine, and before the war she had been a successful novelist living in Paris. Her father had been a wealthy banker and she and her family fled from Kiev to Sweden, then France after the Russian Revolution in 1917.
In Suite Francaise, she tells the story of France's occupation--the collaboration and resistance. Nemirovsky was a Jew--she was arrested in 1942 and deported to Auschwitz. She died a month later at the age of 39. Her husband was arrested a month after she was, and sent immediately to the gas chambers. Her manuscript, Suite Francaise, was hidden and preserved by her daughters who were being protected from the Nazis and raised by their nanny. She and the children survived on royalties they received from Nemirovsky's publisher for her previous novels. The publisher could not send royalties to a Jew under the German occupation, so Nemirovsky arranged for the publisher to send the royalties to their nanny. Suite Francaise was published 62 years after she wrote it, in 2004.
Writer's block? I don't have it.
I just don't have the time to write--
Have to deal with too much shit
Crawling up my leg to bite
My ass which takes attention from
The keyboard and the kingdom come.
If you would just give up some praise,
I'd stop everything I'm doing;
Should you give pause to a phrase
You saw past my shoulder viewing
Something I had just got down,
Respect for you would not skip town.
The wacko killing all those folks
Had blamed the tides of oceans;
Sick from being butt of jokes,
Suffering cruel emotions
Brought on by the way it is--
Cracked, and then took care of biz.
Thirty-two died and that's the news,
And all the news--and for a week.
Hundreds die, and thousands lose
A place to live. But anchors speak
Of this daily crime no more
Than pimps talk of another's whore.
Loneliness might get you down
Or drive you crazy as a loon.
Loons can swim--you're going to drown
Or end up howling at the moon
If you've no one who you can tell
They've saved you from this lonely hell.
Make it good or make it quick--
Since you're taking up my time.
If your and my ideas don't click
Right now, I won't see the rhyme
Or reason to carry on--
Time is going, going, gone.
Religion: when there's nothing left.
Religion: when conditons make
Your soul protect itself from theft
By making sure it stays awake
Through dark times and saving you
From the things that others do.
Religion is the sigh of the oppressed;
The heart of a heartless world,
As it is the soul of soulless conditions.
If there's a heaven, this is hell;
If there's a way out, might as well--
Suicide can't be so bad
When hell on earth is iron clad.
Our legs touched, I felt the thrill
Pressing soft and feeling shy.
Should I apologize? I will
Unless you felt as much as I.
Sitting, elbows on the table,
Our attention on the speaker;
Not quite true, I was unable
To focus, flesh becoming weaker
Feeling your leg touching mine--
Seemed forever to my mind;
On the surface all was fine,
Hidden underneath I'd find
The pleasures of the flesh were strong---
Even when they're slightly wrong.
I thought I was being sly;
I did it when the sky was dark;
Nevertheless, beneath the sky,
You're always going to leave a mark--
Can't outwit the guilt and shame
That trails to a cheating game.
Traces feared, remorse revealed--
In one small note my fate was sealed.
Treading water--same cold spot
In the middle of the ocean.
Deep beneath, resentment's hot
With the tired raw emotion
Boiling mad and uncontrolled
That reaches up to leave us cold.
Can't wait 'til we go to bed,
Separate rooms away
From your anger and the dread
Of what you have to say.
I go to work next day and there
Are people who don't even care
About what you have thought of me--
All they know is what they see.
I am reckless, I admit,
I took chances to pursue
Possibilities trading spit
With a friend who wouldn't do
It with a chance of getting caught--
A dog, herself, put on the spot
By a man who didn't think--
Now served papers left to ink.