Without Further Ado

This is a new song
barely written
its lyrics fresh on the page
not yet uttered once
by mortal lips.
This is virgin material we’re talking here.

It is newborn, the song,
still weaning on the milk of earlier tracks
by older artists.
It has many steps to take
before it can truly stand on its own
as an independent means of expression,
a single solitary work of art.
Still, this is a song now, recently hatched
and ready, perhaps, to be heard
by you, if you’re as excited to hear it
as it is to be heard.

This song was lifted
directly from a tweet by binkyvon.
Thanks for the inspiration, Binks,
without whom,
none of this would be possible.
Please enjoy
how your original thoughts have been elevated.

The tune is by Rachmaninoff
the recording
by Ani Oakton Quintet Players.

I see we’re out of time.
I look forward
to having another opportunity
to present this work
at some point
in the future.

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Armistice

You get a pass tonight
after what has just happened.
We’ll have peace tonight
because of what just occurred.
We’ll let things go
forget the recent past
because of the more recent past
and tonight
just for tonight
the valley will remain quiet.
Order shall remain our byword.
No violence shall exist between us
not this evening.
Not tonight.

We shall remain uneasy
I am sure
nothing like allies
but there will be no danger
not from me
and I will expect no threat from you.
We can maintain this in the short term
in memory of something older
at least for a moment.
At least for tonight.

Who knows what tomorrow will bring?
No, of course
we both do.
We know full well.
Let us hold onto this instant
then
and hope the light takes a long time
to break.

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Tell Me More, Tell Me More

Tell me about your new boyfriend.
Is he a catch?
Is he better than me?
Smarter? Faster?
Richer? Fatter?
Furrier?
Does he make you happy?
Are you being kept under duress?
You can tell me.
Wink three times if you need a jailbreak.
Even after all we’ve been through
you know I’d try and save you
if you gave me the word.
Well, all right,
not if the word was “no.”

Tell me more
about how most excellent this man is.
How fine and kind
and wise and wonderful
you find him
every night
and every morning.
Explain further about the amazing rapport you have
and how you complete each other’s… souls?
Oh. I thought that was where you were going.

I gotta say
everything sounds pretty super
with your fella.

You’re sure?

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Other Side

Sometimes you only know half the story
or a fourth
or a twelfth.
Sometimes your friend complains
about how his boss is always riding him
and then your hear
how your friend’s been charged with sexual harassment
by like six of his coworkers
and maybe his boss
should’ve been riding him harder.

Or like Thanksgiving
that loving tale of friendship and community
that prefaces a couple centuries of genocide
and warfare?
We hear one kind of story
but it foreshadows another one
entirely.

Anyway
I was a real snippy bitch before
during the intermission
and I was probably right.
But
on the off-chance
I’m missing some explanation
and you didn’t deserve the amputation
I’d like to offer all apologies
for my extreme reaction.

Get well.

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Some Commentary at the Free Show

To the guy in the back of the room shouting
“Down in front! Down in front!”
over and over again
over the course of the evening
letting people know, apparently,
that he’s been inconvenienced
by the people who have chosen to stand in front of him:
I have a couple of thoughts.

Someone once said
that the definition of insanity
is repeating the same actions over and over
and expecting different results.
That person was wrong.
That’s not the definition of insanity
and it’s not even insane to repeat activities
and hope a change will come
but shouting didn’t work the first time, guy,
or the second,
and it’s just annoying for everyone.
Get up and talk to folks, all right?

It’s a crowded room.
There aren’t enough seats.
Chill out
or try to find a place that isn’t obstructed
or maybe go somewhere
where your sensibilities
aren’t so easily offended.

I couldn’t help but notice the frequency of your shouts
were far more frequent
when the people who were standing before you were black.
Interesting, huh?

Shouting “down in front” is technically accurate
from your point of view
but no one is up
at the front.
They’re up in the middle.
So shout “down in middle!”
or better
shut the fuck up.

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The Mowed

Nobody talks about the Lawn Rock scene anymore
or any of the old bands back then
like Hard Crime Henley
or Pukka Style or any of the clubs
that used to scare all the neighbors
with the noise
and the kids crawling out at all hours
and the lawns, man,
all the fucking lawns!

I swear,
ever since Fresh Face and Dirk Evil broke up,
no one even says the phrase “Greener Days”
or dances the Mower.
It’s like no one remembers what it was about
and the old days have been swept away
like the scene never happened
but it did.
Those bands were great.
Those songs were something.

Wasn’t Bad Girl Upskirt EP perfection in dirty kid pop?
Why didn’t more people
get on the Lawn Rock bandwagon with that album
or even after
when the Lawn Rock Bandwagon comp was finally released?
What is wrong with the world?

Sometimes I weep
For what we have missed.
I think of the paradise
we could have lived in
had the world only succumbed
to the wonders of Lawn Rock
but now, instead, we suffer through this slanted enchanted galaxy of listen to nothing
but the slap of pavement.

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Taller’d Do the Trick

I thought maybe you’d like me more
if I was thinner
so I started taking pills.
Thirty pounds lighter
and not a single better look from you
so I thought maybe taller’d do the trick.
Lifts and stilts
and some steel in my legs
earned me three inches
but no more attention
so back to the drawing board.

I tried smarter
with a new graduate degree
and some memory tapes in my sleep
but I caught a weird Tourette’s tick,
saying shit like “Actually…”
and “According to Stanislav…”
and you asked me if everything was all right
which was a step in the right direction
but not good enough.

I wondered if you preferred people of color
so I got a tan
and then I read Black Like Me
and then I got a Melaninectomy
which was not what I thought it was.
Quite the opposite, in fact,
and I inadvertently turned albino
which explains my day
and why I’ve taken on this new style
so really I was right
and it was a funny story
wasn’t it?

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Have You Heard the Good News?

That story you told
about your horrible experience
being beaten up
by Albert Schweitzer
and his psychopathic dog soldiers
back in the eighties
and how it changed your life
teaching you the value of serenity
and learning to love oneself
and not to place faith in idols
because they may prove false
while your own soul will always be true?
Riveting.

I did some research, though
and I’ve got some good news.
Schweitzer died in sixty five
so it couldn’t have been him
that beat you so traumatically
in your formative years
back in the eighties.
Maybe it was a Schweitzer lookalike or somesuch
but it wasn’t your hero
so it’s all right to put your faith in idols.

Your life lesson no longer applies.
Happy birthday!

Don’t look so down.
I’m sure there are other lessons
still to be learned from that brutality
like
don’t get beat up by dog soldiers
or anyone else, maybe?

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Keepaway

There are things we don’t discuss
subjects we avoid like Voldemort
words we avoid
buoys in a sea of placidity.
We play Hot Potato with topics
that could destroy us
if we light on them for too long.
Instants of exposure
to such toxicity
could prove fatal
so we keep wide berth.

You know what I’m talking about
but you will speak of it
as little as me
to maintain our sea of placidity
and remain in in silent tranquility.
We keep mum on what was done
and speak of anything, anyone else,
lest we be blown apart
by our own words, ourselves.

I’m talking too much
about what cannot be said.
I know how near I skirt
to such zones of desolation.
I know what I dare
and I’m scared, too,
but the things we don’t discuss
risk destroying us.
We are so close to the end
maybe we should bear this fear
of dismemberment, rending us apart.
Maybe it’s time
to bring up the unspeakable.

Maybe today
we should finally talk about Anna.

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Weirder and Worser

Nice shoes. They look uncomfortable.
I’m not being sarcastic
or anything else.
I can’t tell if they’re sexyor cheap.
I know that I’m neither
but opposites attract or something
so I’m looking at you
and your heels
through those sort of lenses.

I’m sorry. This is rough.
Difficult. Frustrating.
I am having trouble.
I am learning to talk to humans again.
It has been far too long.

Isolation does things to a man
or a baby
and I am one of those things
– maybe both.
I have been having issues
getting my tongue to work lately
around other peoples.
And my lips.
And throat.
It’s been hard
but I’m trying
and I know it’s trying to be around me
– it must be –
and you’ve been very patient so far.
You’ve been
good.

But your leopard print stilettos are really cool
and you seem like you might be
even if I’m not
and I’d like to continue talking
– you’re not a whore, are you?

I’m sorry.
I’m really having trouble
making my words work.

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