Wet Blanket

How appropriate is happiness for one who’s helped

fill the world with crap?  (Mick Jagger, a man 

whom you could argue has it all, professed

an inability to achieve satisfaction, and later

added that while one cannot always get

that which one wants, one just might find

one gets what one needs.)  After all,

in this upside-down world (as Eduardo

Galeano calls it), a lot of people and most

animals–let alone trees–never even get what they need.

So much for Mick’s prescription for well-

being, regardless of how well-intentioned

the man may have been, or how soulfully

he expressed the sentiment.  Yesterday

I saw a bumper sticker that read Baby

on Board–Behind Wheel on my way to buy 

a pair of diapers for posterity.  That was

shortly after nearly being run over

by a young man speeding down the street

on a heroic mission to finish composing

a text message to his girlfriend,

who waited patiently on the sofa,

exploring the charnel house

of television channels, checking

for split ends.  For one who wastes

a lot of time worrying about death

and bemoaning how much his own

life sucks through choices made on the fly,

it startled me how much I wanted

at that moment to stay alive,

resentful that my decades-long

experiment with consciousness

and sybaritic distractions

from collective adventures

in meaninglessness

could be snuffed out

by some wanker

on his way to buy ice cream

for a woman who was only

waiting for someone better

to come along, just as he was,

as they passed the time

pressing buttons, the way I am

now, hoping someone might

show them the way

without taking them to the cleaners

to have their brains removed

by force and replaced

with an incredible simulacrum,

a universal model designed

by a corporation predicated

on efficiency, tax evasion,

and a laceration of wages

in the name of ungodly profits,

bowing down obsequiously

to the almighty dollar

before it succumbed

to its essential worthlessness

in a gleaming puddle of chump change. 


33 thoughts on “Wet Blanket

    • thank you. i know what you mean about feeling dissatisfied. in some ways, i’ve been very spoiled, but i still waste a lot of energy on whining. as ludicrous as it may sound, it’s probably the thing that keeps me going most.

  1. Pingback: “Borrowed” from Harmonious Stew | Some Guy Talkin'

  2. You have a gift for words. I’m not exactly sure what you’re saying but I’ve read it twice and enjoyed it both times. Then I copied it and put it on my blog. I did this with credit and directions to your blog – I hope you don’t mind.

  3. When I started reading, I thought I wouldn’t like this. I thought ‘Oh no, not another internet poem which is not really a poem but actually prosody’. But it moved me. Poetry is not about ‘getting it’, so much as finding which associations and images come to you, and enjoying the sounds and rhythms. This poem came at me all in a rush, the narrator’s ennui, and how it is broken by this man crossing his path, this young man who really cares about something, even if it’s only temporary (the relationship with his girlfriend) and about how the narrator, nearly run over and annoyed, cares about what happens to them, and hopes they don’t get sucked into mundane hedonistic distractions, or bury their lives working for a company which exists to make profit but doesn’t do anything very useful in the world. Maybe in some way he’s talking to his younger self. Anyway I loved it.

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