Soldiers marching in a desert,
remember not their daily cares.
Remember only endless marching.
Caught in dreaming, unawares.
marching to Bethlehem
Things fall apart.
The center does not hold.
We, along the periphery
dissemble for survival.
All our pretty goals
dissolving in the face
inevitable despair brings.
The wise babble desperate incantations.
The weak of will and mind
sing Hallelujahs and kick the peasants
as they pass.
Perhaps we are in the hallway
of a great reckoning.
Mad Earth grumbles loudly,
threatens to rescind Her bounty.
Men of illwill, men of destiny
proudly proclaim their birthright
to pillage, to plunder, to prey upon
If only the poets sang truth in such
majestic certainty, with such
charismatic humor and allure.
Things fall apart
Here, along the periphery
we carry our burdens,
sink ever more deeply
into rotten crevices
singing our selves
mucked in human manure,
grates through the common sewer.
Unembraced, unengaged with
disgraced as a gutter myth
given no say or power.
Keep a tight lid, kid, on
who you were, what you did
that never can be allowed.
Never let them see you sweat.
It’s dangerous to show regret.
You’re not a target; you’re a threat.
Do you get what we’re all missing?
We could be questioning and listening.
Giving credence to each other’s dreams
needs and abilities.
Healing rifts with respect,
Because the puzzle is only complete
with all of the pieces in sync.
Brain cells invited to think,
brawn to chop wood, carry water.
Souls dance in the sunlight
and to song of far away stars.
White Anglo Ethos
Petulant brats demand obeisance
to our code of conquest, of dominance,
of hard-assed outcast of deviance
Rule over Earth and her issue
break them to work for our wishes.
Honor, respect,these are authorities’ own
the war lords we place on our thrones to command.
Progress is forward motion on opening roads.
Marching, no conscience nor care for what may explode.
Let our Great Destroyer sort it.
There was a Roman soldier bored with war,
with whores, with bloody babies.
Hoping to escape, he wrote a history,
his Holy fantasy.
It’s but a Shangri-La, a piper’s dream.
Metal men, formed from clay,
scream upon fields of hostility,
catch up with senses.
Soothed with martial melodies,
gratefully march to serve.
There is a sweetly drifting tune
Meandering like wisteria
Is it a dirge?
A sassy New Orleans carriage ride?
Is it the beating of my heart
Spraying a trail of bleeding homage?
It is a wedding march,
Played slowly, out of time,
Beat by beat, more slowly
I give my wandering children
Anger to protect you from pain
Rage to ameliorate agony
Fear of what folks won’t explain
Fraught laughter to counteract tragedy
Music to move you to heal
Theater to unite what we feel
that vague sense that nothing is real …
Lost at an indistinct edge made of snow
Unsure where we’ve come from, with nowhere to go
Beggars and bullies and braggarts and whores
iron chains on our windows in rooms with no doors
Fire roams freely, unleashed by cruel wars,
feeds forever on days we will never see,
worlds we will never be
Another kind of rabbit hole.
Ghastly dark and bruising.
No recompense of wonder.
No luxury of child’s imagining.
No spritely tea time story.
Only caustic mud awaits below
at tumbling’s end.
Young rabbit hops
beside Edenic flowers,
sniffs puissant nectar in the air.
I am complete in this instant.
Now, I leap to a farther garden
to taste the bitter charms,
the salty repartee, tropic spice
and cold beer. Sense, sensation,
cessation of sensation —
not happiness, not bliss.
The essential can not
No destinations wave aloft
We move on.
I am the rabbit.
That chic Alice had the hots
for me and we had planned
to hole up for awhile.
But then thing’s got too
surreal. Lewis Carroll,
I began to feel used
as a plot device.
Can you blame me?
I ate some of Caterpillar’s
mushroom, grew into
a pooka and moved
in with Jimmy Stewart.
Redubbed myself Harvey.
Loved the cocktails.
Later, I haunted Donnie Darko,
puzzle poser of his final fall.
What I mean to say is
is born, bred, propagated
out of pain, vanity, desperation
and the humor we conjure
to spite it all.
I have no legitimacy.
It is enough if
I deign to cavort at your call.
March of disorders;
unstable chemicals break down,
crush frightened innocents
Gonna build our army for God
Oh the glory, Oh the rapture
millions of souls marching home
There are armies of the night, marching,
conscripting our young, our heartland, our hierophants.
Marching, in orderly fashion
Or beatifically walking to a sacred drum.
The horizon shifts through daily duties and nightly prayers.
We take what we can. We give.
March of novelty
sad kabuki metaphor
drowns in destruction
Three Penny Opera and Grateful Dead:
What They Mean to Me
I was listening,
under a grove of budding trees,
on an early Spring evening,
to the morals of our time as displayed
in popular music,
and thinking of the many tiny travesties
of personal moments all around me.
The seatide ebbing/flowing of the music
more than hypnotized
as I watched people flowing
through an inner newsreel
of pride and misery
People marching in various uniforms
To a beat of pride and progress in the marketplace
and war zones;
People marching or being trampled or
sniping from the rooftops
All in rhythm.
And a friend said to me
on a starlit evening,
“It’s so hard to know anymore what to do.”
Musical march of human history
heads toward individual liberty.
Taking our streets in
big bold singing, dancing, laughing, power
A new day is dawning, but where is the sun?
Our freedom and faith are defined by the gun.
The symbol of power overrules everyone
‘Til we create our own electricity.
But under cover of darkness a banner’s being stitched
Of patchwork-bright colors and radiance
To someday soon be unfurled in the breeze
As we march to freedom’s song.