Sweet and Untouched

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From where I am sitting
It all looks pretty good
The mirror is crooked
And the little angel is staring back
She sleeps content with it all
Safe in the knowledge
That when she opens her sleepy eyes
Home will be the place where she will die
The arguments, she won’t hear
Dishes breaking, only after she disappears
Paper Mache hearts that are crumbled and broken
Soften only by tiny steps
Like sunshine into a room
Or breaths of fresh air in downtown Mexico City
Living in bliss
She survives in the wake of her oblivion
Such sweet untouched innocence
Asking only that her heart not be broken
She knows not
Of the things we say
That take away the sweetness of the day to day

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The Stars Asked Me To Go For a Ride

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Rocket me to the moon
Lifted on barrels of high octane fuel
Pressed into my seat my the thrust of the candle flame
Minutes to miles
From the troposphere
To the thermosphere
The tiny capsule shakes under the pressure
Instruments rattling
Like nervous cattle
This tiny room will spin its way
Up
In dizzying circles
The troubles, like the clouds that encircle the Earth
I leave it all behind
But I promise to return
Return to tell my stories
Of the eternal darkness
And insufferable silence
But the stars had asked me to go for a ride
So I hitched a comet tail
On an adventure into my future

Stars

dtdeedge

They are not lonely,
They are sowing the seeds of life,
As they condense hydrogen to helium and finally to iron.
They grow old,
But they ride contentment,
Smiling as their children are born and cool to planets,
And moons,
And life.
They know they are a part of the cycle,
And that they too must go,
To flare out as supernovae,
Or to collapse into singularities,
Transcending the laws of this universe
To begin life
In the next.
And so too shall we end or cycles,
And transcend this confining flesh
To begin anew our lives
In the next portion of our cycles,
Contented
And more complete.

In response to: http://raindropsandpoetry.wordpress.com/2014/02/28/black-holes-2/

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Not now

dtdeedge

It is my wish to hurt you,
To hold the corners of your being
That you have tried to hide,
And pull until you are thin,
Aching.

I loathe you,
Your weaknesses,
Shortcomings.
You are not one lesson shy of inadequate,
You are without value,
A stain on the air that I breathe,
A mire in which my shoes are soiled.

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The Decay From Within

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Here is the dying animal. Slowly pulling itself along the journey. Unable or unwillingly to give up. It is pushed forward by generations of bad programming. When asked if it is alright, it stubbornly refuses to answer.

The past is present in its lungs. Each breath is a testament to tradition and indoctrination. It fears the end is coming. An end that will bring it to lie down, take its last bated breath and become a relic or reminder of something dark that had existed once. Banned to the shadows once again. Looked upon with scorn. These thoughts frighten it terribly. The nights are dark even though the moon shines brighter than ever before because its eyes have failed. Cataracts of panic, fear and delusion prevent it from seeing the world clearly. It attempts to look relevant in the face of those who condemn and wish its death was already a foregone conclusion that arrived much more rapidly than it was.

Sadness and desperation turn into anger and bitterness. And that all morphs into loneliness.

This animal was once mighty… the biggest of them all. Propped up by religion and politics…it tells itself that love… love is circling the wagons and loading the rifles. Defending its position hoping that somehow and somewhere, redemption will come to its rescue! It prays for that deliverance. But the attack becomes even fiercer with time. It gets harder to defend itself as a just and honorable animal.

Its hope and desires are mired in illogical and ill-conceived ideals that gently reassure the animal that it is on the right path. It tells itself that God is on its side. It tell itself that it operates on a blessed mandate that the unrighteous cannot comprehend.

But instead it feels the power of its muscles being drained. It senses that its jaws no longer have the power that they once had. It believes it has become a lesser being than the one it was born. It is now feels nearly as weak as the sparrow that walks alongside the wheezing animal watching it curiously. It continues to resist the weight of death.

From time to time an animal whisperer has appeared and given it a temporary renewed lease on life. He reassures the creature that its twisted views of the world is really just an almighty power to heal. An ability to see more clearly when others are blinded.

But God sits watching the dying animal. He is sad. Not because it is dying. But because it could have prevented its own death. It could have been a force for good. But it had long ago made a choice. It let a tiny pin prick fester into a raging infection.

God sits and watches the dying animal. Free will had been given, a chance to not destroy its own soul. This was not the beautiful animal he had created. This was an ever evolving monster many generations in the making. Unrecognizable. He watches it enter the death cycle of failed religious interpretations and prideful entitlements. This process is necessary. That is the design of the universe. The rotten must one day lay down and return to the Earth.
The dying animal now looks toward the heavens. A victim of the voices that rise above it. The voices that offer a protection for the mute. The voices that drop ballots.

It had learned nothing. It had taken love, the power of the cosmos, and dashed it upon the marbled floor of the drumbeater. It had taken the words from the creator of the cosmos and then tore it into pieces. Pieces that scattered across the depressed and oppressed minions of able ears.

God places his hand on the dying animal. The voices of love grow louder. The world brightens ever so slightly. The animal takes its last breath.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Babysitter That Introduced Me To Bo Diddley

diddley

It was the summer before I turned 13 years old. I was entering a new phase in my life. It involved an amazing amount of curiosity that burst from me. I was suddenly starting to really figure out what I liked and didn’t like. I was discovering that life was large and all encompassing. That year I had lain in bed in the dark with the radio next to me listening to the US bombing of Libya as it happened live. The Iran-Contra affair kept me riveted every night on the on the 5 o’clock news. I had even started a news diary with clippings from the newspaper detailing the latest development of a baby named Jessica McClure who had fallen into a deep well. When I wasn’t doing that, I was outside catching bugs and making dioramas with them or reading random Encyclopedia Britannica entries. I was a sponge that was absorbing everything it could. It was an exciting year.

But I had no idea one of the biggest things I would learn that year would have to do with music. I already had figured out years before that music made me feel like nothing else. I was making mixtapes when I was 8 years old. The year before though I had discovered a great new genre of music called “the oldies”. It was the music of my parents’ youth. I quit listening to anything else and began to concentrate on making mixtapes full of songs by the Supremes, The New Beats, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons and Smokey Robinson. These were the songs that made me excited. I could only learn so much when it came to music though. If you listened to the radio, we had oldies, country and pop. I enjoyed pop music. But that was very easy to get assimilated to and understand. It was everywhere. You could hear the latest chart toppers in movies, TV and across the dial on multiple channels. I was interested in the music I was not familiar with. So oldies filled that gap for a while.

Then one weekend my parents came home from the video store with a magical VHS tape that contained a movie like any other I had seen until that point. It was an amazing for a number of reasons. It contained some mature teenager plot lines that seemed to push the boundary on what I was usually allowed to watch. There were jokes about periods and large breasts. There was some gun play and some spicy language. It also had a pretty intense plot featuring dangerous situations and chase scenes all set in dirty downtown Chicago. Not sure if my parents realized what kind of movie they were about to unleash on a 13 year old. But it was these little moments of escape from the innocence of youth and being shielded from anything that might corrupt a young mind that I lived for. It was another moment that I might get to learn about something new and exciting. It was a curtain blocking most the world that had suddenly been lifted ever so briefly to allow me a glance.

The movie opens with an amazing song that I had already fallen in love with due to my obsessions with the oldies. It was The Crystals singing “Then He Kissed Me”. That right there told me the movie was going to be one of a kind. About half way through the movie one of the big chase scenes occurs. The group stumbles into a blues bar. An awkward situation ensues with the group of white kids stuck on a stage in a room full of black people. The crowd appears hostile and angry and a demand is made that they cannot leave until the blues are sung. They are silent for a moment until the oldest starts to explain their situation. At that point an old guy on stage breaks into what I now know of as “I’m a Man” by Bo Diddley. Suddenly their story is a song and everyone gets involved singing and commiserating. With their demand having been met, the crowd lets them go. I rewound the VHS tape and put a tape recorder to the speaker of the TV and recorded that song and every other song that was in the movie.

Since we had no internet, there was no way I could get answers. Who were these people in the band? What was that song that they had broken into? I spent the next week walking around making up lyrics to place between the guitar riffs that blasted inside my head. And the sadder I could make the lyrics, the better it felt!

‘my cat died this morning’ dun dun dun dun ‘I missed my bus to school’ dun dun dun dun ‘when I got to school I had no lunch money’ dun dun dun dun ‘oh I felt like a fool…. I got those bad day blues’….

I did not know it at the time, but I had discovered the Blues. It was a genre of music that conveyed a wide range of emotions and dealt with personal adversity. It had spoken to me in ways that other music never had. Looking back it was sort of the opposite of Steve Martin in The Jerk. In the beginning of that movie he is a white guy who is adopted into a black family. He has trouble relating to their musical tastes which included the blues. He is having trouble feeling like he belongs. One night while listening to his radio he hears jazz music. His toes begin wiggling and then before he knows it he is out of bed and dancing like he never knew was possible. He is awakened to the possibility that there is a life out there for him that he needs to go discover. Well I too had been awakened. I had been introduced to a music that was invented to convey sadness and desperation. And my soul told me that the blues was something that was compatible with my psyche in ways I had not yet discovered. As I opened up my ears to other things around me I began to discover the blues where everywhere and I just hadn’t recognized it. One of my favorite songs at the time was “Bad to the Bone” by George Thorogood and the Destroyers. All his songs were cut straight from the cloth of the blues! Songs like “I Drink Alone”, “Bad to the Bone” and “One Bourbon, One Scotch and One Beer” were all direct homages to the greats. As I thought about it, I realized that “Bad to the Bone” at its very core was using that same Bo Diddley riff from “I’m a Man”. The connection made was intense. These just weren’t songs anymore; they had origins and reasons for playing the way that they did.

To this day whenever someone mentions the movie Adventures in Babysitting, I am transported back to that wonderful time and the soundtrack that was full of classic blues cuts. It had The Rolling Stones, Muddy Waters, Junior Walker, Koko Taylor and Percy Sledge. And I carefully recorded them all from the TV to my cassette recorder and spent the rest of the year listening to it. To this day I will always remember the babysitter that introduced me to Bo Diddley and the blues.

Beyond the Night

dtdeedge

I have lost a day to the distance,

for this place is beyond dreams

and past the night.

All is different here, so very different.

The pride,

the will,

I am torn down in the fire by ideas

I can never understand.

I am a child without a voice,

without right –

pushed and pulled,

swayed to either side by desires around me.

My soul is too different,

my ears a curse.

I can no longer speak –

my opinions melt under the onslaught.

I have a mind,

dreams,

Damn!

I wonder how to return to life,

normal.

.

11/19/01

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