Wednesday, October 13, 2010




Eating calendar salad

at the end of every month

growing fat on time

as if there were no tomorrow

waiting for the harvest moon

to rise over a seedy field of welfare cheques

so the banks and the landlords can bake bread

while their tenant farmers

live like birds

on what’s slipped

through the fingers of the threshers.

There’s no more nobility among the poor

than there is brotherhood in the Mafia

honour among thieves

or goodness in human nature

that isn’t a form of self-defense.

Virtue is a martial art.

People get smart

to go on offense.

The best kept secret weapon of society

is the deep solitude

and insatiable loneliness

of everyone on the other side of the mirror

who can’t stand the sight of themselves

in the eyes of all the others

on the far side of Easy Street

where the bitter

always turns into something sweet

like vinegar into wine

not junkie grapes mainlining the vine

under their tongues

like somewhere they haven’t hit before.

Those who have much

equate the future

with more and more and more.


And those with less

less and less and less than zero

when things are bottoms up.


Dangerous hope.

Futile despair.

The black farce

that goes on tour with agony

like an eclipse behind a clown’s face

that knows the light has died within.

Poverty is the new sin

of the twenty-first century

as it was in the beginning

and as it shall be in the end.


You can be the worst kind of trash

you can be a polluted river

or an oilspill

a nuclear meltdown

that turns the milk green in Norway

and you can still guarantee

the quality of your afterlife with cash.

You can tell the biggest lie.

You can committ genocide.

You can get foreign aid

to rape the Congo.

You can extort money

like something bright and sunny

from a concentration camp

like gold teeth from the mouths

of all those who have been holding out on you

and you’ll still be forgiven

the return on your investment

as long as you’ve left enough room

for your colleagues to eat

from the big trough

of six million tiny mouths

like a corporate Leviathan

consuming their consumers like krill. 

You are what you kill.

Hunters and lovers know that.

That’s why so many committ suicide

just to be themselves.

The poor rush into things

that make the rich hesitate.

The poor see an opening

and their hopelessness

compells them to take it

like nature abhorring a vacuum.

The rich file a patent on a gate.

They open a new factory

and make everyone work late

to supply the enhanced demand

for Trojan horses in a free market.

Or to quote Barnum

no man ever went broke

underestimating human intelligence.

Che Quevara had his feet and hands cut off

by the very people he was trying to help.

They betrayed him for a school bus.

The rich think of revolution

as the same old superstition

they’ve always had to overcome

like the peasants of Russia

by an Aryan ubermensch

who keeps his genocidal eye

on the numbers.

The rich liberate their brains

from the burdens of opulence

and the bounds of common sense

with quality experiences

that only the finest money can buy.

The poor rely on their chains

for a sense of direction.

The rich have weathervanes

like patriotic minute men

that know which way the wind blows

when they’re listening to Bob Dylan

on their yachts

like a protest song

that sounds a lot

like a distant ousi

in the hands of the have-nots.

The poor wither into a bitter old age

like a paper cut

to the minimum wage

forced to eat shit

all the days of their lives

and call it their daily bread.

The rich go to hospitals

as if they were hair salons.

The poor look for their cures underground

or on the cheap in the Amazon

or on the other side of this life

where the meek inherit the earth

like a kidney from an organ donor

on the black market

like a second chance at life

to take the surgical risk

out of what’s already been taken

by doctors against quality medicine

who’ve sworn a hypocritic oath

to liberate

their discipline from compassion.

The poor can lie dead for hours

on the floor of an emergency room

and no one cares

whose mother they were.

The rich are carried

in a black limousine with a chauffeur

who knows better than anyone

what they were

when they stalked the earth

like a raptor who scoffed

at the future of warm-blooded mammals

they didn’t give birth from eggs.

And there are some vampires

that are as big-hearted as bloodbanks

running from the corners of their mouths

when they give thanks to everyone

who rolled up their sleeves

and got the job done 

by making a contribution

that’s vital to everyone

now and for years to come.