Friday, March 21, 2014

The Marvelous Land of Indefinitions

The poet's business is telling the truth. -Ricardo Miro

How nice! How convenient!
We have all gathered to read and listen to poems
As if everyone were actually equal
Laborers in the corn fields
Girls in the cigarette factory
Though someone always seems to be saying
"A poet's task is making poetry... blah blah blah"
But poeting with poor people doesn't end poverty.

How sweet it is! How nice!
First poems and last words
Are heard here, dedicated to friends
Describing the ultimate artistic inspirations
Incorporating all the latest stops and turns
Of fashion

          the alleys oh like psychedelic birds
          and the transfiguration of being,
          of self, of the essence, blah blah blah
It's annoying.

Clearly, this poetry reading
Will not be heard in the town square
Because people don't listen to poetry
Since poetry is "the nectar of the gods"
And these readers are demigods
Rising up to nirvana and adulation
All of those others who read, write,
Or listen to this stuff

Tranquilly, everyone reads
After cocktails

Happily, an interesting poem
Reminds me of Proust
Or something from a 16th Century French book
No one assumes responsibility for sense or vision
Because, in the final analysis, poetry
Is something personal

Newspaper headlines are full of lies
And the radio is full of lies

Because everyone goes along
In slavish style follows the ways of the word
(European, Anglo-Saxon, White)

And the style, the form is what's important
Incomprehensible to everyone else
But them. Oh, in the final analysis
Everyone else is a part of the problem
And we're in the "in" crowd.

The ones who never read are ready to gossip!
Did you see so and so's new book?
          I just got accepted in Reader's Digest
Blah blah blah

But that's okay
          Okay because we made the best of it
Seated at god the father's right hand
Ok because here where nothing's happening
No one can truthfully say
                                             us least of all
That we're lazy
Hate to work,
Know nothing but gambling, drinking, fiesta, good sex
(The common definition of a Panamanian)
What's on our mind is the office,
                                                       Security, the kids.
          Daily bread.
A payday every two weeks or the 30th

Everyone goes along
Because unemployment goes up every day
It's okay exploit the farm workers
Ok than rent keeps going up
          that young people are lost in marijuana and "free love"
         because all the world drinks Coca-Cola and smokes Viceroys
And everyone prefers blonds and white folks
And cathedral arched eyebrows
         because the gringos don't worry themselves about anybody
(Only duck hunting in January - and that not too often -
And controlling the nation's economy)
          because the others who suffer
In the final analysis, this is the 51st state
In the wonderful land of indefinitions
Where everyone goes along
Where poets gather to read poems
And sip cocktails
                   And talk har har har
                   Chat har har har blah blah blah
                   Talk har har har
To evade the compromise
Escape the moment
Avoid facing destiny and the "secret word"
                   Each day growing clearer
                   Each day blah blah blah
                   Hovering blah blah blah

by Lorenzo Thomas

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