Saturday, May 23, 2009
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Beer and cold air; cigarettes and mint tea;
High scores and stripper poles reflecting
light, spinning around a cock-eyed room.
He would sing and sing and wait for that
definite surge through his body to come, as it always did.
Inspiration keeps no schedules, he knew it.
No belief in muses, here.
He had, but not anymore. Too many feelings
involved. He had done away with sappy lines
scribbled in fear of losing a feeling, being
left with nothing.
It was when the nothing came that
the pen became a sword.
I'm in France at this place
where the naked ladies dance, and
this man is telling me, Brother, the only way to win is to not turn it on at all.
I ask what he means by this, and, in way of response, he lifts a glass of fire and
drains it in one, consuming himself as he drinks.
I turn back to the Boom and the Swagger on the stage,and soon become
hypnotized by hips and ankles, lost in a sea of beauty, gone slightly to seed.
I can smell their persistence and the smell is the taste is the smell,
all menthols and talc and fear. I nod to the beat of the band in the
corner of the club, and as I do I begin to Nod in earnest,
my own rhythm moving me to a ship, now, caught in some
massive whirlpool, worthy of Homer and Odysseus.
Have I angered the Sea God? If so, what have I done to
set loose this wrath? But then I see a hand in the heart of the maelstrom,
one finger crooked and beckoning, and I steer the
ship towards it, unafraid, because what lies at the bottom has to be safer
than my choices up here: I can smell Scyllas' breath and
on it I smell talc again, no chance there, no life at all.
Then, everything goes blank; I can't see or hear a thing.
It feels like 1998, in Albany, Oregon.
Yeah, boy, the end is certainly fucking nigh, and our collapse
is fueled by the sharp insanity of crushed Ritalin and vanilla.
The Worst of It
He said that the majority of the time, the
average day to day, was like civilian life, a regular
9 to 5. Occasional guard duty, but mostly working
on trucks. Inside on a good day, out of the dust and sand,
otherwise you couldn’t leave your tools laying out, unless
you wanted 3rd degree burns on your
hands. That was the worst of it, he said, the heat.
Day in, day out; 110, 120, in the shade. But,
every once in a while (and here’s where his eyes became shaded and looked away)
sometimes you saw other shit. Like the time
he was driving with a crew to some little town outside Baghdad and
they saw a group of people on a huge pile of rubble up this side street, and
from where they were it kinda looked like they were carrying rifles, and
one of them had something else, but
they couldn’t really tell, they might’ve just been carrying shovels or lumber
(and some of ‘em looked pretty little, like fuckin’ kids) and
they didn’t have orders to get any closer, but they called it in anyways, and
they got the response back...
Light ‘em up.
So they did.