Sunday, July 15, 2007

The Joke

The joke
for jokie

Sorry I haven’t been able to write,
I’ve been too irrelevant,
It’s possible I may not exist even
I can’t find myself anywhere in your essay about what most artists do
I can’t do mosh pit ego bash in the zine scene it feels too lonely
I keep a journal too but how does anybody read those things
Without a super editor program?
I needed places, names and times to understand your poetry
Which you said suffocated you which
Suffocated me and Violet said, “Who IS
This person?” Good question, his being dead
just adds another distance, and when you say
“politics (yawn) it’s all over, all
we can do is art"
even if these are our last moments I can’t
participate in that non
When you said you could bend over far enough to perform fellatio
On yourself? Seems unfair to say
that's your whole game
Since you’re the extro I the intro
Vert, you the giver I
The taker except there should be another measure
Of care another dimension
Of direction You always say light
Conversation is more
Negotiable but it turns
Like sperm that swim in
Circles (I was trapped in my own house once
With a roommate who was fucking
His girlfriend, it still makes me think how little
There is to say even
To myself)

so for a long time I just
Stopped talking
Your persona, for instance,
Jokie X Wilson has the same last name
As the volleyball Tom Hanks talked to
On a deserted island, a fable, we all live
In our own, as the hero of course, this time I
Was the volleyball the grasses stuffed in my
Head waving
In the wind eyes and mouth
Unmoving thru
Years of your postcards about the weather leaves
Falling across my sight
And now night
stares back at me from outside my bedroom
hard and plain it will not
give in or give up
its dead, its hard surfaces
Unforgiving as your edict: “Light
Conversation is more
like a concrete

The church where you spent all your time wishing
You were somewhere else? Well, now you are when
You get to San Francisco the highway ends, no more
Little towns under big skies and people
Living out the consequences
of their little lies just an endless orgy
In an empty room with tiny windows
Way up high and everyone
Has your last name so
When you have sex are you being outgoing or
Ingoing or is it just
In and out having fun
For traumatized people
Is a very complicated proposition if I was trapped in there
I’d be the introvert over in the corner slowly
Beating my head bloody
Against the wall,

looks like the joke's
on me, I lie here staring at the horror
Of where my life has gone
Night after night kneeling before mechanical altars
My face ground up in the interface
Between man and nature
I could use your positive thinking
if I could stand its products
the system, the system
Nobody really talking
Nobody really listening
Nobody understanding
As we all swim in circles
In a swill of silence
That is not silence but muffled screams
And sobs and shitty

Charles Olson was right it’s
the distances, the distances,
the lonely roads between lost little towns
the static between the stations
the potential, the carrier signal
for the unreadable even if decodable
journal entry from the big bang
Yeah it’s funny alright,
I travel those roads over and over like my uncle the traveling salesman
With a face like a roadmap, a briefcase fulla clocks, and a mouth fulla nothing to say
Out there just like a Texas Willy Loman, riding on a smile and a shoeshine,
(Just like Charles Olson, he died in his fifties, hunched over the lawnmower, In the sixties
he wanted to take my brother down to the FBI and
have him apologize for being in The Resistance. Useless,
I get in the car at 3 A.M. just like him, just like
Just trying to keep her family together
(except it was really her that was falling apart)
one lost little Texas town after another
Archer, Bulcher, St. Joe, Plainview, Gainesville, Olton…
(Surely those names must mean something
Just like the secret codes on license plates)
looking for the people I thought I knew
pound on doors, nobody home,
or different people answer angry
They don’t seem to get the joke, Jokie,
What the fuck they wanna do, anyway, SLEEP
Their fucking lives away? They
Don’t seem to understand this is an emergency,
Not much time left to get to know each other
And there is nothing
The distances, the distances
The beats between heartbeats
And the red lights of the radio towers
The silence between the persons ….
But it was never a problem before
Guess it’s just that
death, that
Ego problem,
is so much closer, now
I thought maybe something, somebody
Would give in, say, Hey, I’m sorry, it was all a just a joke, IS it all
a joke, Jokie? You said,
“I’m just a gay man from San Francisco.”
OK that’s a good setup but what’s
The punch line?

OK you win banality
Uber alles, I lie here defeated
my body hurts with old age aches and pains
I’m scared to go to the doctor and scared
Not to, like Robert Creeley said, nobody,”nothing
Is competent” ANY attempt at believing we are
Any more than flesh and bone, nuts
And bolts gets beaten
To a bloody pulp in this world…
remember the shoes
With nails driven thru the toes? They're
the only thing you sent
That ever really spoke to me I guess
The shoe fits, shoes with nails
thru the toes, now everybody


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