Thursday, January 10, 2013
Sunday, December 02, 2012
ain’t no sunshine through the window
ain’t no grass beneath the trees
they got no leaves on their branches
sitting by the window taking chances.
my breath upon the glass
your image makes it past, by automobile
snow tires on for wheels.
no footprints through the winter
no hand knockin’ at my door
I’ve called your voicemail before,
wasted my time to hear your sound
scatters the silence
a tactical violence.
you always find the right place to hit me
and I always fall apart.
All the men and the horses
couldn’t gather your remorses,
I’m just a man in a cave
can’t roll my stone away
can’t roll my stone away
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Sunday, October 23, 2011
Saturday, October 01, 2011
America I’ve given it my all and you left me with nothing.
America five-hundred dollars credit, September 30, 2011.
I can’t afford my own peace of mind.
America when will you let me take off my clothes?
When will you be empathetic?
Will you ever stop sending our best eggs to die in deserts
and middle eastern streets?
America what plans are you concocting while we sleep?
I won’t let my emotional life be run by your atomic bomb.
America I feel sentimental about the West Memphis Three.
I studied Castro in school and downloaded music and I’m not sorry.
You should have caught me abusing Napster.
America I’ve checked into Hotel California.
America live fast die fun.
America when will you stop funding the human wars?
America free Tookie Williams.
America save the Arab-Americans.
America Mumia Abu-Jamal must not die.
America WE ARE TROY DAVIS.
America why are all your hospitals so full of tears?
When will you be worthy of your millions uninsured?
Leave my Medicare alone.
Go fuck yourself with your HMOs.
I just bought myself a gun so I can feel safe in my bedroom.
America look who’s wearing the strap-on.
America this is freedom of expression.
My ambition is to write despite how hard you make it to keep a pen.
America this continues to be serious.
It’s serious on the news in the streets in the schools in the churches.
Everybody thinks this is serious except for YOU America!
They mean food when their stomachs growl.
They mean medicine when their coughs do the talking.
They’re trying to speak when they go quiet.
America are you paying attention?
America you’re becoming quite greedy.
ME wants Big Oil.
ME like skyscraper and concrete landscapes.
ME have foreign Tar-Sand dreams.
America China is still rising against us.
America you don’t know who to go to war with.
America it’s them bad Terrorists. Them Terrorists and them Freedom Fighters.
Them Terrorists wants to blow us up again. Them Terrorists fly our planes.
Them Terrorists is suicidal and crazy. He wants to blow us up with envelopes
out our own mail boxes.
America all that’s left in Oklahoma is the Tree.
America but it is you and I who are still perfect.
America I am Canadian and this is the view I get from the television set.
America that wasn’t icing sugar you used to sweeten the Winnipeg sky in 1953.
America when will you fuck off and let me be?
America when I was eighteen years old I was watching the news with my mother and it showed us images of kids running out of their school with their hands held to the back of their heads and they were following the police officers while guns were firing and the injured kid crawled across the library floor and dangled outside the window for all the cameras to see and still inside were two kids with guns and bombs and trench coats who walked around their school and killed all the jocks they could shoot and then they killed themselves.
Then there was Virginia Tech.
America then ten more innocent holes in the Beltway.
America you still don’t understand what happened to Ron Kovic when he came home.
The Old Man can’t fish in the Gulf of Mexico.
America my name is Forrest Forrest Gump and people call me Forrest Gump.
America shit happens.
America I’m imagining there’s no heaven and I like what I see.
I won’t find your Jesus until I’m ready.
I believe I’ll finally find Neverland.
America I’m a super freak I’m super freaky.
America I’m going to keep on rockin’ in the free world.
America how many times will you turn your head and pretend you just don’t see?
America the answer is blowing in the wind.
America I found Forrester and he’s pissed
because nobody remembers his book
because you took all the books out all the libraries and you closed the libraries.
America for a fisher of men you’ve thrown many of us back.
America this is the view through Garry Gilmour’s eyes.
America is it becoming clear?
I didn’t say anything America.
Sunday, September 11, 2011
The first thing that people noticed was how low the plane was flying, and then how fast. Every news crew in the country had their cameras pointing at the already smoking North Tower. Sirens bounced off the exteriors of the buildings lining Wall Street, the sounds of people expressing their shock and awe became almost ambient noise as panic and uncertainly began to take hold of the fearful people scattering on the streets below. Many watched the destruction through the lenses of their video cameras, unsure of what they were seeing unfold, but certain they would want to remember.
The nation was watching and wondering why these two staples of the New York City skyline were being attacked. Thick black smoke continued to escape through the sides of the North Tower. Cameras rolling. People running away from the building but unable to take their eyes of off it. A city of Salems and Lots looking back and running scared. Then the cameras saw the plane and it hung low in the sky, too low in the sky, and was blasting through the air with speed. People would note the roar of the engine screaming mere meters above their heads. Police and fire crews responding. The authorities begin to climb the stairs.
Five hundred yards away from the North Tower, Ben is watching through his camera lens at the surprising and paralyzing moment thrust upon his morning view. Ben was thirty-five stories up and like many in high rises that morning, was wondering if his building was next. With a shaky hand, he panned his camera across the large smoking hole in the North Tower, followed the trails of smoke up toward where it collected and formed a giant blur at the roof. Smoke pouring out the windows, smoke pouring out over the Hudson River. The practicing New York Giants saw the smoke rising from lower Manhattan and with the same curiosity as Ben, some of them grabbed their cameras and began to tape whatever was happening. Every movie camera in the tri-state area was trying to get this on tape. Spectacle doesn’t quite say it. The second plane was flying low in the sky. Air traffic controllers watched helplessly as the plane abandoned its flight plan right before their eyes.
In the clarity of hindsight you would have thought more people in the towers would have brought parachutes with them to work especially those who worked on the upper floors. Instead of watching helplessly as people flung themselves to their deaths to escape the smoke and flames, Ben’s camera would have seen a rainbow of parachutes blossom through the smoky sky, navigating their wearer’s way to safety.
Instead there were arms waving white flags and people desperately gesticulating in a vain attempt to call the world’s attention to the people still trapped inside. There were arms flailing and legs kicking out for the support that wasn’t there. There were bodies that sounded like sacks of cement when they hit the earth.
The streets were frantic. Police, Fire, EMS workers scrambled to assist. Smoke pouring out over the Hudson, blurring the eyes of Lady Liberty. People screaming. People standing with their mouths agape hoping the right words to say would crawl voluntarily from their mouths so they wouldn’t have to think.
A blur of cellular phones pointed at the smoking North Tower.
The plane was closing in. Faster. Roaring. Thunder sweeps across the streets of lower Manhattan mixing with the whirlpool of sirens, horns, screams and camera flashes. Annie Leibowitz aims her camera through the windows of her twenty-third street loft. Pictures go in her book of significance.
A man on the one hundredth floor has stopped waving his flag. He looks through the smoke and sees his children and the life they would go on to have without him. Below the people look like ants scrambling away from an unwanted footstep, scrambling for safety, scrambling to heal. Scrambling. His shadow grew as he approached the sidewalk.
Planes in the sky check in with the towers. The men in charge of national air traffic scratch their heads when repeated communication with United 93 go unanswered. Clear skies all across the country today. Nothing to worry about. Boss Man’s famous last words as he left the control room for the coffee room. Coming back to a view to chaos. The world imploding. Plane flies low. Roars. Screams. Bulge of orange flames appears a second after. A firey hole punched in the steel and glass skyline. Clear blue skies. Nothing to worry about. Smoke columns visible from outer space. Masking liberty island.
Twin Towers are burning like candles on the birthday cake of a new world priority. Beware. My suitcase means something to you. You should find my stare menacing. Why are you ignoring me? You won’t be doing that for long.
The towers burn like candles.For an hour the Towers burn and Ben’s camera records the entire thing. The sirens, the screams, the running, the yelling, the heroes, the collapse.
A people’s redemption in the hands of the heroes who crawled through rubble and pulled out angels. The shadow of a solitary fireman quietly taking stock in silhouette becomes a symbol of recovery efforts to rise again. Falling Man frozen in the shutter of a stranger becomes the symbol of the thousands missing, and efforts to name those without names.
Friday, August 26, 2011
I built the city when I first laid eyes upon it.
I made this chair when I sat down on it.
I killed you when I saw you already lifeless in the grass
beneath the apple tree that taught me about gravity.
Paint a rainbow when you opened my eyes.
Walked through the rest of my life expecting a big surprise.
Fell through the traps I found in picture frames.
Became the catalyst to my own decay.
I saw hellos when I first heard your good-byes.
Felt the tears of my laughter and the joys of my sorrow.
Shut my mouth and watched my open palm shake while it did the talking.
I do my best running when I'm faced with walking.
Bum a cigarette from a stranger,tell a line to feed a friend.
I saw a tall tree, you saw the opportunity to fall.
You dressed for winter like you didn't notice the summer at all.
We built this island when we stopped to see the sea.
Right in front of us while we slept way up in the apple tree
that taught us about gravity.