Posts Tagged ‘death’

Before The Move

27 Oct

This growl the fatherland we first stalked,
this scowl the mother lode we first imagined—
solid day duties hurried past gene-spotted nights.
            We did not invent this theme.

Film on the fives. Ancient mutterings slow to neutralize.

Hearing the herd, my dear, splashing past muddled urges. But death
in sacred surges singing its skilled and perfect pitch
the cold seize of an extinct sturgeon's Adriatic strain
spoiling the forgotten flesh inked in drama,
this drama of Bolington's wet stream.

Spoiled ugly miner's eye growing green, slowly gone...
The poet choked. The painting dried.

Against the gray ash folded hills his Virginia sky grew black,
chasing spit, there was nothing that lived that night that caught
that's it, so much as a breath of slack.

We reconcile the concept of withering time
racing faster in toil than we ever swore it to be,
against the yellow years of a faster tomorrow
no relic found can improve lost liberty.

[2010, Lovettsville, VA ]

Lampshades Made Of Flesh

11 Nov

Long and white pickings
of the litter slid past
this old television set
where filthy & famous
flying objects affectionately
gorge themselves on civics
the fool's camera, off topic,
some gorgeous idea devoured,
their own well-greased
bravado and beauty
to set Smith free from
the mules of mockery
of misery and forty acres
of danger, democratically.

Society of the spectacle
ain't without its icecapades
or pumpkins carved up for freight
until writing clay poems in short raids
scattered along the glittering class
loving then shooting on first sight
sane pigeons walking the awful plank
hands in nobody's pockets, nobody's
like some promised quack on the run,
we believe ourselves dutifully astonished
swooning at the slow taint of suicide songs
entering nations now as the thief moons
simple courtesy to some frenzied
God of the dead licking steroids.

Hatred and phobias best in news
best in show, framed for flight
no time for sergeants or shirtless Jews
no cross-bearers, no Zen numbers, no holy waiver
to rot this new perspective, only
the icy pool of blood to spend
words in a book of terror
left as Joe Mohammed's
calling card
to each of us who doubt
we're on the invitation list
engraved by fourteen centuries
of lust wandering the sands of time's
last stand. Time is the detonator.
Time is the fire, the flame, the scream.

Time in due time will prove itself the liar,
or bring back lampshades made of flesh.

[ 2002, Washington, DC ]

Love And Time Installments As Life Reminds Us Of Itself Again

26 Jun


Time Installments


At 9:55 AM -0400 6/26/01, Sue Hedrick wrote:

Dear Richard,

I really feel bad now.

Gabriel came home last night after being away a week. First he drove to Monticello, GA to pick up his brother Allan, then the both of them drove to Chicago—where their mother, Peggy, who is studying for her doctorate in psychology is at the Adler School—to visit her before driving back here, arriving last night. I told Gabriel of Mama Ethel's passing over the phone before I went home last evening. Then, when I arrived home, he said there were several e-mails from you starting on the 20th and ending with the funeral arrangements...I am so sorry that I did not check his e-mail over the time he was gone. I actually had thought about doing so, but didn't, thinking that is sort of like opening someone's US mail.

Another twist to this saga is that Gabriel had actually talked about going to Albany to visit you and Mama Ethel last week after picking up his brother in Monticello, GA. But, she may have been to ill to see them at that time.

The point of all this is to let you know I do feel terrible about this missed opportunity to stand by you in this event. If I had read those e-mails on Saturday, I would have been there.


Sue Hedrick

Wow. My world too is rocked as life reminds us of itself again and again.

Love and time installments,


Mother At Oglethorpe, Old Friends Pass

19 Mar


Peggy Nix in 1953


Dear Ricky—I made a special trip in to school today just so I could check my e-mail, just hoping I would have something from you. I think your proposal is wonderful. I accept! It would have to be after May 12th and this YWCA award, however.

Well, that would be just a few days after graduation—so all the excitment will surely still be there. Let's make the plans as time grows a little nearer. Thank you! It is really a wonderful proposal. I have so much wanted to visit you and Sue.

Oh, we are on Spring break at the moment. Most of the Seniors have gone to Savannah—for all the St. Patrick's Day stuff—and I had made my reservation to go along. We got a huge block of rooms at a motel for practically nothing, and were going on Oglethrope buses, but at the last minute I realized I really needed a break—time out to sleep and rest, so I cancelled my trip. I really glad I did that. I am truly not as young as I once was—or sometimes think I am. I think I told you I found out that my friend Gerry Pennington Spicuzza died in 1981—well, through the internet once again, I found out that my boyfriend from my highschool days in Ft. Lauderdale and his brother are both dead.

It’s sort of like James Gault said to me at Kitty’s funeral—”There ought to be a law that everybody who grew up together have to have a meal together in celebration of their friendships at least once a year.” I like that idea.
I am going to quit trying to find old friends! Bob Lozier (my boyfriend) died in 1982 (aged 47) from mutiple sclerous(sic) and his brother, Eddie, died of a massive heart attact in 1993. I talked to Bob's wife of all people, and she was very cordial and nice to me. Told me Bob had been ill for seven years—a hard time for them I am sure—and that they have two lovely daughters. I had wanted to talk to Bob or Eddie because they had known Gerry, and I thought talking to someone else who had been in our crowd when we were young would help me get over her death. Cynthia, Bob's wife is not someone I have ever known, but she knew my name and remembered that I had come from Darien. She told me that all of my pictures were "still in there in the dresser drawer where Bob had kept them." I really was stunned—didn't know what to say, but she hastened to say it was okay, that she had actually been in love with Eddie and Eddie had had to marry a girl from New Hampshire while he was in the service, and she had ended up marrying Bob. She said Bob had been a good husband, a wonderful father and a good provider until his illness. We talked to each other sort of like old friends. I told her I was glad Bob had found someone like her to marry. She said if I was ever in Titusville to look her up. It is really sort of wonderful how once you get old you can get past so many things. I was in Ft. Lauderdale about twenty years ago and tried to find the Lozier boys—I couldn't remember their mother's second marriage name, and there were no Loziers in the phone book. I wish I could have found them then and had an opportunity to talk to Bob or Eddie before they died. We were really great friends. Well, I guess there is just one more friend I'd like to find from those days—Ronald Sapp. He lived in our neighborhood too—he taught me how to smoke. (Ha!) I am sort of afraid to try to locate him—I sure don't want to know he's dead too. It's sort of like James Gault said to me at Kitty's funeral—"There ought to be a law that everybody who grew up together have to have a meal together in celebration of their friendships at least once a year." I like that idea.

I am so afraid I am not going to make it thru the biology, but so far, I am passing. Examinations never bothered me before, but for the past couple of years, I just get sick and almost forget everything I ever knew about a subject.
Well, I've rambled on enough to bore you to tears—I am looking forward already to my trip to Washington!

The spring break ends on Monday and its a shoulder back to the wall again. I have six books to read about Alfred Adler in order to write a paper in my history of psych class, four books to read on Autism in order to write a paper about personal identity and soul for my Philosopy of the Mind class, My research on conformity must continue—I need more data so that I can crunch some numbers and come up with a paper presenting my work that is worthy of presentation at Emory (deadline 3/31), I have tons of work to do in order to maintain a passing grade in this 2nd semester of biology, and I am presenting a paper at the Psi Chi (Honor society of Psychology) semposium in Athens (U of Ga.) on April 8th concerning my last semester's research project (I am not a member of the honor society). I have to do all of this, plus go to class, take notes and pass exams in order to graduate. I am so afraid I am not going to make it thru the biology, but so far, I am passing. Examinations never bothered me before, but for the past couple of years, I just get sick and almost forget everything I ever knew about a subject. So, light a few candles for me or something, please.

Love, M

Date: Fri, 19 Mar 1999 10:42:38 DT
From: "Margaret Nix"

[simple_series title="Mother"]

Change The Subject Darling Before The Finish Line Is Egged

05 Apr

Allen Ginsberg

Allen Ginsberg


Allen Ginsberg, whose raw, angry verse epitomized America's beat literary movement in the 1950s and '60s, has untreatable liver cancer, his friends and a spokesman said Thursday.

I'm surprised that there is no transplant maneuver available for such a famous, and no doubt moderately rich, bastard such as our poet laureate from Patterson, NJ. Or at least close to money. Surely there was more to the poet's general health than a bad liver.

Given the nature of this post, I suppose I should step into the batter's box, and tell my own Ginsberg story. I have two, actually, a long phat one and a short all too familiar one...

Originally posted on Sat Apr 05 08:25:18 1997

Yellow Shirts (Death of a Prostitute)

22 Apr

Crayons, crayons, crayons
crayons, crayons, crayons
crayons blowtorch, crayons edgework
crayons, crayons, crayons—yellow shirts
construct clever angles the still merely coping
find new energy to measure!

The hungry prostitute
followed the also slim dark man
fist first into translation alley

where she opened her yellowing blouse.
There fixated no mounds of erotic flesh,
merely several bright reddish-pink scars
countercrossing her vocal rib-cage,
nary a quip existing.

The man not usually the man
dared not gaze nor acknowledge her story, but
reached past dirty lining of empty pockets in gesture
he expected her to understand like clockwork.
Birds of prey sniffed the searchlight air
as she then pulled up borrowed
orange skirt to reveal

coarse frontiers of rife wiry soldiers rising up past her navel
famous and down around her anus. He recognized her
as a fantasy Greek whore fallen from lukewarm grace
shared by her people before the roadbuilders enslaved
her family of talents and trick questions.

Crayons, crayons, crayons
crayons, crayons, crayons
crayons freemount, crayons junkmail
crayons, crayons, crayons—black shirts
instruct beneath 20-year warranty shingles
each vendor vows to insure!

The homebound black man,
ear to the cold stones of the slain past
and frequent remorse spit at him
turning away to walk like Sudan
into a book of warm testaments
jawbone empires of the trade
have cast onto his jaspered milieu.

The prostitute
who now called herself Raferti
in honor of a former lover now threading the eye of America
began screaming the foils of rape only her attacker seemed
to hear with one ear besting the cold stones
the street gives rest. "I am a proud Macedonian woman!"
(buffering the dream state of static language)
she pleaded as if meaning was hers to give
in this twilight part of town
where shadows play night whispers
for a cheap grin despite yesterday's oil
at tomorrow's market prices.

The raven suitor,
whipped into a frenzy,
required stitches near his clutch of duty
as I came drunk into the picture
spinning a globe relief on my index finger
hiding a nearby rock which he found to fiercely crush the poor
maven's skull. "White bitch!" he mumbled as he tore away the skirt
making himself a bandana. Soon a crowd had gathered to hear
him explain how he had to beat off the woman who had
tried to rob him of his manhood,
shouting racist slurs
when he refused to buckle to her will. The commoners
in their way pitched fair, impressed by his oral defense,
better secretly knowing the stranger was hardly
an example of local slavery
where sadness schemes free blood
not random violence.

Crayons, crayons, crayons
crayons, crayons, crayons
crayons motionlure, crayons courtesybound
crayons, crayons, crayons—red shirts
hugging the courier sweeping away jet engine residue
each summed difference makes to another in similar
designs along the surface of the thief's jaw!

There stood near the well of Bar-Lipscotch
a young Lebanese poet. His name was Gibran,
identical in trespass as another
Lebanese poet gaining fame in frisky Boston
earlier in the century. Young Gibran drew up a drink
of water, not because he was thirsty, but because
he was jealous of the owner of the well, after
failing to woo the daughter of a nearby oil shiek.
Despite his words of humble glory and rich scarlet
the poet had been turned away by her, and the father
threatened to have the young romantic killed if he ever
darkened the skies of his daughter again.

A blue ladder and a pair of crutches sketch the Dali sky
where puffed clouds whirl unnoticeable agents
of peach elegance, detail by detail
into the jaded eye,
but I pay the toll with a word ready
to dismiss all symbols not my own,
should those days ever arrive
under government of one
suffering vitiligo passage with student privileges.
(The scriptures were never this straightforward.)

Gibran the Strong
never fearful of intellectual neutralization,
stopped for a drink of lemonade and swore
he would establish a plan
to overthrow the armchair power
vats of the rich goat-lip, the customary curse
his native tongue seemed to pearl at cost and sell to the peasants
at a healthy profit. Gibran was moved to issue this statement:
"Every man true to himself is a racist!" And then compassion
seeps into the pages. Gibran spits into the flavored water,
and then pours it onto the ground
to rot the teeth of grasshoppers
nearby ill with tape recorders.

He later constructed a response to the itch in his skin,
"Don't question them
until you see the whites of their eggs and the yellows
of their beds, and then squash the bugs!" Train schedules
were carried out on stretchers but the rain was held up
at gunpoint and then executed gangland style
giving all the newspapers a headline
act it could follow like a bee
to honey I Love You
and Lucy too.

And the band played on
under jock pseudonyms of jealousy and the six-pack foursome.

"Gotta hire an agent so I can fire somebody next fall."
Hooking up with three hookers from Cincinnati
the guestboy felt relieved at the vociferous news of the hour,
any hour, pick an hour, how about 1:59 PM MAY 9, 1492,
where who cares, then found a rock to stand upon
that he might urinate into the well,
being irregardless and all,
from outside the picket line with pockmarks
any butter girl can love from the inside out.

Crayons, crayons, crayons
crayons, crayons, crayons
crayons idiotsheet, crayons purposebitten
crayons, crayons, crayons—green shirts
wave upon the football fields the nation planted
picking up the pieces of those meeces we hate
to admire without purposes,
called for economic triage!

Prophets of death and doubt enter the googe,
giving the sign for a delayed steal with loaded bases,
"We don't care if you don't like us,"
the metallic ones shout, "We are here now. You'd better
grab up used guitars or get used to us. We're the warring tribes here.
We are LuxMachina! Laws bargained on the letter!"
A young woman saw the poet accomplish these things
and came rushing to and fro, semi-pro and ready to con
him within a state of great anxiousness,
Chinatown at 5th and Germaine,
the beeper number reinstated,
needful of a ritual, settling for tattoo, and distant star
named after his pop family, no new river available
while she disrobed and watched the ink carve
justice without a destiny,
last things first.

"My lover, my flawed poet
of mighty high courts and meek
works! You are little endowed to fight
the strengths this managerial team has mastered
and for the black, red, and invisible masses dubbed
platinum, Bar-Lipscotch, come, let us burn eager
night away!" In a wheelchair of passion the poppies
wilted into whizzing pellets, rabbits and the ruined.

It was time to refinance again last month's agreement
obsolete, culturally numbed, all true meaning reviled.
so off the wall the signature scattered and was sealed.

Line by line
Gibran was visibly shaken
by the quick arm of events. Revolutionary slow tactics
proved a greater success than even he imagined back in the forties
with Sartre over supper and attention to his thumb.
"I think I'll gather up all my friends
and put them in my pocketful of fumbles the story never tells.
There's too much nudity but I've never seen enough. And
death cannot calm my energies to wrap the world
in God. I feel like a vowel in a German novel."

You mean Hebrew, don't you?

This time it's not so stark a rat's radio
when a woman of unrelaxed beauty begging him to challenge
the heights of his own highly active faith, rips down her veil
and walks high-heeled over me, still strapped to a vow
to please myself in three notes or less,
and a hamburger today for a gift horse tomorrow,
shifting sands of the seashore national synthetic
blasted by another female-triggered hurricane,
now random naming, a squirrel gathering nuts
for Ezra to sell by the pound duty-free
in a little piggy market

to canonize her as he would see fit. The dirty poet
as pure as an oil gusher in a detonation of spirit
wastes no time in serving scant purposes on the girl,
almost dying with devious torpidity upon falling
against her breasts goosed like pineapples,
the texture of her voice like the buzz of the helicopters in the city
where transitional bombs from one echo to another kept it in ruins,
the sweet flutter of this man's history
was none other than the youngest
daughter of Bar-Lipscotch, the sister of his earlier desires.

Now gentle on this stage,
greenlight splashing off marbled rocks of pain
in the background, center pavilion cloaked in summer wages,
I shake hands with and bow before Gibran the Sole Pursuer,
was pleased, not realizing the old system of cages
is an act too ugly to reveal in this account,
for numbers never lie in the eye
of the beholder on the take.

Ice of names storming the desert vivarium
crows along the freckled river many worship
on one hand and pollute with grim ideas on the other,
as she swallows our withering without support of her family,
and Gibran was soon left to dish up another plate of
raging jealousy. Years after he had first spilled impurities into the clean
well, the poet died from an overdose of good luck, shot in the brain
by another young poet who desired Gibran's gift of poetry. When
the elder poet tried to explain that what was asked of him was impossible
for him to relinquish, the angry young street poet
blew the backlash of history clean off
the old man's memory.

Let's generalize all the forces of nature!"
oddball phantoms crack and conspire in jest, slowing only to pay steep dues
along the singing alley up a tough mountain completely on track
to visually network olive oil and fly papers
seeded among the top three in the division,
the field of old leaders has demanded. Hawks and ugly birds
took the news early as a sort of package deal the tombstoners
must escape if they want pretty doves at their wedding.
"Only don't be so generous with the lepers
this time. There's a cockroach
crawling along my toothbrush, and I want him dead,
or at least a bugler that floats on mouthwash."

Crayons real, crayons true
Crayons, crayons, crayons
crayons comfortskinned, crayons bitterzoned
crayons, crayons, crayons—white shirts
failed to mark the highway spoils
generous to a fault in war,
criminal to a tee in peace,
now a timeout for the two minute warning,
a drill held where even phantoms fear to tread.


"Ignorance and virtue suck on the same straw. Souls grow on bones, but die beneath bankers' hours.""