Freakishly Thin


I didn’t know how freakishly thin he was till
I saw the photo in ‘Far Out’ magazine
of the young Nick
Cave
.
What a head of hair, a squall of black,
lean and loose-limbed, hardly anything of him,
but a chiselled face staring knowingly and determinedly into the future.
He knew what he wanted.
He had the bridled brawn to do it.
I have always admired thinness. the Nick
Cave
kind
not the thinness of the heroin addicts
I’d see in the backstreets
of the city
nor the thinness of the wan weakling
I saw in the fish ‘n’ chip shop
whom a mere breeze could bowl over
but a macho sort of thinness
that seems to have passed me by.

* pic courtesy of Pinterest
 

Poor Old Keith

 
My heart goes out to him.

Hey, Keith, I know it’s hard languishing on the Express Shelf still after three weeks.
I know what it’s like to be a wallflower
alone and palely loitering on the cold hillside..

I don’t know if he gets the reference. Keats.

Yeh, I know what it’s like, Keith, I say.
But don’t worry. Nicole still loves you.

He seems to lift a bit.

And anyway, I tell you what: if you’re still here when I come in next week, I’ll borrow you. I’ll take you home.

A bit of color seems to flush his cheeks, and there’s a glint in his eyes.

Hang in there, Keith, I say, on my way out.

Credenza

My parents partied to Mario Lanza.

His records littered the credenza

before ending up on the turntable.

[ it was the era of Clark Gable].

and everyone would their glasses clink

when Mario sang ‘Drink Drink Drink’

He had a big voice and big loves,

and the habits of a tiger cub,

‘impossible’, it was said, to housebreak.

He died too young at thirty eight.

Way way back in ’59.

Then along came Elvis. He was mine !

  • pic courtesy of Wikipedia

The Sky Goes Goth

the sky

has gone

Goth;

dyed its hair

inky black;

the dark clouds squinch

like too tight jeans

letting

no light

through;

a Greek chorus of crows

caw

from the bare boughs;

thunder

mumbles

like Nick Cave’s intro

to Red Right Hand

One little Letter, one HUGE difference

Bev put on a Golden Oldies disc

when Hippy Hippy Shake

jumped out of the player.

Chad Romero, I said.

Who?

Chad Romero, the singer. How good is my memory?

When she went into the shower, I sneaked a look at the CD cover

to make sure I’d got it right.

Huh? Swinging Blue Jeans, it said.

That’s funny, I thought, I’m sure it was Chad Romero.

So I Googled the name.

My heart sank.

‘Chad went home to be with the Lord,’ the Obituary began, ‘on April 23rd, 2017.’

Bullshit, I said. Chad was a hell-raiser. He wouldn’t have gone meekly as that.

There was no mention of his singing career.

So I Googled ‘Hippy Hippy Shake’ and there he was : CHAN ROMERO.Singer, composer, lyricist.

The full package.

And he’s still alive. Still rocking.

Sometimes one little letter can make a HUGE difference.

The Blue Curtain

I promise to corroborate, she says

behind the blue curtain.

I promise to corroborate.

Good, the male voice says, then keep still.

She does but her mouth doesn’t.

Any minute now she’ll mention the condescension running down the windows of her van and I’ll try to suppress a snigger,

but just then the doc comes in and injects me behind the blue curtain.
Jeez, I say. I felt that.

Sorry, he says, and you’re bleeding.

But I rally coz that’s what a man poet’s supposed to do.

It’s nothing, I say as I look at it, kind of mesmerized. It’s like that song says.

What song?

You know, Iris by the Goo Goo Dolls. ‘Sometimes you bleed just to know you’re alive’.

Why I Left


They didn’t sing the songs I liked.

The good old Gospel songs.

That’s why I left.

Songs like, ‘Down to the River to Pray’.

‘Keep on the Sunny Side’,

‘Leaning on the Everlasting Arms’,

songs with grit and passion,

big songs with big voices,

like Mahalia.

Instead they sang ‘white’ songs, marshmallow songs,

watered down, hollowed out, tuneless drones.

I wanted melodies that swung low and lifted me

like that Sweet Chariot.

That’s why I left

Meatloaf: a Mash-up

When I was a horny teen, I sometimes dreamt of finding

paradise by the dashboard lights, but dad wouldn’t let me

have his car so that was that; my big brother who was into

philosophy, said, don’t worry, buddy, heaven can wait;

you don’t know what you’re talking about, I snapped.

I found a gal and we went for it. like bats out of hell.

I didn’t have a big motorcycle, or a belting voice

but I found a gal I hit it off with , so I said to my brother,

hey man, two out of three ain’t bad

*pic courtesy of Wikipedia

I Never Heard it Coming


We’d just got back from the beach.
I pulled out a book, she put on a CD.
Peaceful, floaty music.
Music to paddle-board to.
But then it changed.
The tempo picked up, the violinists
Played furiously
Like The Two Cellos playing AC/DC.
It was ‘Winter’ by Vivaldi.
I thought, what’s there to get worked up about
With Winter?
Spring, yes, but Winter?
Sluggish, soporific Winter.
But those violins were working up a storm.
You do get storms in winter —gusts, gales, blizzards.
I wanted to get up and fight someone.
Bloody Vivaldi.
All I wanted was Peace. And I got Fury.
You just can’t trust classical music

*pic by Pinterest