Love and those of us who like fucking love peace;
and I, for my part, am happy enough with a favor
won in a virtual spat from a chatroom dominatrix.
I’ve not got one thousand nodding donkeys
pumping crude from the fat of the land in East Texas;
I’m not interested in snapping up Liz Taylor’s
cast-off diamond necklaces; and you won’t find me
done up like a ponce in Armani or Pierre Cardin.
But that is not to say that I am ready to slap on a flak-jacket
and go kick the ass off the axis of evil for the good of good old Uncle Sam.
Some foreign egg-head’s at the back of all the ills in the world,
I know. But he’ll end up with 2,000 volts, courtesy of
Enron and the Federal government, thumping through his liver
on a prison hospital bed one day for sure. So, I don’t care.
What are brains worth when they’re fried, mister? The only way
is the righteousness of the born-again dumb-assed soul. God bless!
Now, the anchor with the blond bob and the tits on CBS
says it’s getting rough in the sandstorms out there
but we’ve got the bastards on the run, of course,
and superiority in the air and technological stealth
and smart bombs and sensitivity to collateral damage
and depleted-Uranium-tipped tomahawks
and an overwhelming sense of right will always prevail.
But I say, after a beer or three, on the sofa
that you can have or have yourself a gilded bathtap
from a Presidential palace in Baghdad,
but you can’t take it with you, can you,
if you end up some skeleton in uniform
with your bare dumb ass sticking out of a dune.
The bones and the stinking sun-dried flesh
of homeboys and aspirant blue-eyed all-American superheroes
get ground up all the same by the eroding desert winds and mixed
with those of the Fedayeen.
Howard Hughes, Adolf Hitler, Marilyn and JFK
wind up in the same sorry shipwrecked boat
as the rest of us, once they’re dead.
That’s why I prefer heavy metal music
and working out my adrenalin in the crush
of a Kiss concert and, while I’m still young,
dedicating myself to Stolichnaya and Peter Stuyvesant
and long-necked Buds and long hair
and head-banging and amphetamines
and a fuck for the groupies who didn’t get lucky that night.
Till I’m too old and bald for that sort of thing.
Then I’ll mellow out and enrol
on a night-school course as a mature student
and study astronomy, and weather science or law.
Because I’ve always wondered why the moon
rises and falls and grows fat or thin by the month,
and how we used gravity to visit it
and why twisters come from time to time
to trash trailer homes and why there is always clouds and rain
over our holy land and why God paints a rainbow
through the sky when sun shines through purple haze
and why the tops of the pines sigh and shake in the wind
in National Parks and why, lying stoned on your back
all night on Summer Camp, the Plough goes round and round
the Northern Star and never dips into the lake and why the Seven Sisters
stick so shiningly and close together like Motown sistas
and why the sea doesn’t fly off into space
like an Apollo rocket
and why seasons and moods come and go.
And in Church I’ll learn of the hell
Where whores are broken on wheels,
and evil Nazi doctors are chained to crags
and operated on, without anesthesia,
and the unfairly wealthy are forced
to endure an eternal thirst
to the sound of Evian water dripping out of reach;
and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse
are constantly a-sowing a pandemic of AIDs, rattle-snake bites,
bipolar disorders, anorexia, smoking, obesity and diabetes
over that shady, inescapable place
guarded by Rottweilers and sharks.
But I’ll know, because by then I will be an educated person
and wise through age, that all of this is merely a necessary
illusion for the dim-witted and the blessed,
who, of course, can’t handle the grim reality of cremation,
oblivion and death.
When I die what will remain of me
will be simply this simple life that I have led, am leading
and will lead.
And I leave it you who
like crew-cuts and guns and the stars and stripes
close to your breast
to do the very worthy job of National Defense.