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Ben Balserak Feb 2015
**** the power in myself
Introspect; too much is left
Read the pain between the lines
Satan sleeps with me tonight
Teach me love frugality
Yellow fever spread by lips
Nip the bud, and shear me clean.
Ben Balserak Feb 2015
The train never stops,
It circles its circuits
There's no on on board,
And theres no one to work it

The lonesomely captain,
Is glued to the windows.
A million fly past him
Through shadows of ozone

Each station he passes,
He fondles the brake.
His eyeballs turn plastic
"I know that mistake"

See, what if they steal
Yet another train-car?
There's pain in his heart,
And he won't think that far.

So he smudges away,
And adds to the pile,
Another small tear,
Made of grease, blood, and smiles

So onto the next,
Every station in line,
Taunts him, but he's
Firmly made up his mind.
Ben Balserak Jan 2015
Grat, smat, tack.
my windows are black.
and the raven (that raven)
comes insatiably back
and the windows and caskets
and smallish ash-baskets
(you'd better believe that they know what their task is)
are holding the pieces, the embers, the sound
and hollowing portions we make in the ground
are the sickly embrace;
a dismembering hug
of a small, ****-backed hobo
without heart or a lung.
and his eye-hollows burn
for to end Adam’s race
and so often I wonder
How the fleetest of foot
can’t find the footing
to escape.

have you ever wondered
"what if I died tomorrow"
the earth would still twirl
and seven billion of her people
would never stop to cry.

They didn't even know

that you were alive.

but that's fine.
Ben Balserak Jan 2015
Ashes to ashes
As mine slowly fall
The dead cannot speak
But if listened, they'll call
And I reek of the dead,
And the dying, myself,
As it goes to my head
That a life is a death.
I'm standing alone,
As alone as I'll die,
Regardless of those
Who will doubtless stand by
And the buildings and windows
That I never built
Relieve within me
Some extraneous guilt.
See, born as we were,
By extension was I,
Without obligation
To those who have died
We live in the cities
We technically rent
But the landlords, now dead
Can't collect all this debt
So the headstones and pillars
Don't represent me,
But there's one in the future
To which I'll be freed
So Manhattan, Manhattan,
There's stones in my eyes,
Reflecting old dirt and a rat in the sky.
Written while looking at the graves at Trinity Church.
Ben Balserak Sep 2014
Upward-curled, gleam of white
But as yet, something missing
“I swear, I’m quite alright!”
My wonder turns to stressing.
Is she really quite alright?

No-one wears their shoes,
Socks upon the carpet
Browning fog turning loose,
But purple mist diffuses.
Is she really quite alright?

My wonder turns to worried health,
I turn my focus to myself,
I pull a beer down from the shelf,
Indulging still our failing health,
She smiles, as if to say that she’s alright.

Trading sweat between our hands,
A greeting shared from man to man
We speak ambition, WE ARE PROUD
Our cigarettes, they make no sound.
They know that it will soon be their turn.

To be or not… I have forgot.
Our wasteland, wasted, seems alright
It skips my mind I’m all I’ve got
I’ve never put up much a fight
I hope I’ll quickly be all right.

But there are NO PROMISES
And no safe-houses.
smoke arouses surety,
But holds the door for vanity.
But as for me,
I highly doubt she's feeling free.

Charging, useless, up the hill,
The last endeavor of it's kind,
Cry peace, peace, but peace is killed,
Fulfill the end of southern mind.
There is no way that she's okay.

As men in grey
Lay on the ground
Bleeding with untempered sound
I cast my eyes about the house
I find her broken, fading lips
Pressed limp against assailant’s kiss

Those pearls that were
Her sentient eyes,
They cast upon me smiling sighs
She clings the arm of shifty eyes
And leaves the party, new inside.
And now I know she’s not alright.

But then again, nor am I.
References to T.S. Elliot's "The Wasteland", The Civil War, and Shakespeare's "The Tempest"
Ben Balserak Sep 2014
A warm embrace from city grates
combats the colder breeze
How then should I continue?

A further stroll might treasure hold
But of this, none assures me.
Then why should I continue?

I might have stayed and soothed my pain
My legs had faltered for the thought
Why then should I not stop?

In short, I kept on in my walk,
But often now I think of how
I could be different now
If only I had stopped.
Ben Balserak Sep 2014
I once knew a watch-thief
Who stole for his own
He wasted the time that he
Stole on the road
But this gypsy boy finds
A young girl one day
With a garland of flowers
And a red satin waist

She came from the highway
That led to the city
Her garments conveyed
She was wealthy and pretty
The gypsy boy wore
Some old slacks and no shirt
And he would not have seen her,
But she introduced herself first

Before hellos were said
Or greetings exchanged
Years later he said
He could feel something change
As she told him of ease
That she left behind
He fell to his knees
And praised God’s good design

If love is a lifetime,
Then lend me your hand.
The sparrows are witness
That my promise stands
And now our gypsy wagon
Is off down the road
And we’ll never stop moving
Cause this is our home.

This small band of gypsies,
Now larger by one
Trundle the pathways
and roads they call home
The watch-thief reclines
with his girl in his arms
they fall quickly in love
‘Neath the light of the stars.

But if hindsight goes further
And time teaches true
There was blood in the water,
If only he knew.
She came down to his level
But took it too far
She went too far in revel
And slowly, she broke the boy’s heart.

The gypsy boy stood,
Still stock still in his shock
He ducked under the hood
Of his caravan-rock
He walked back to the city
She’d said she was from
He put it in a bag
And he drank in the slums.

If love is a lifetime,
Then when will you come?
The sparrows, our witness,
flew too close to the sun
And now my gypsy wagon
Is off down the road
And now I’ve nowhere to go
because you were my home.
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