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Feb 2015 · 435
Fine Line
Mahatma Jones Feb 2015
I sweet talk to a wishing well, truth or lies, even I can’t tell
My childhood bites, it cut my teeth;
Grounded and pounded like agency beef.
Said goodbye to a vanishing world, did a savage dance with a native girl.
Flashes and chills, it’s a strange sensation
Started from scratch it’s a skilled creation.

Head hurts but it could be worse, I wake up in the morning and it’s
"good night, nurse"
pulled from the warmth of the womb, slapped then cursed
it’s a fine line and it’s ill rehearsed.

It’s a wonderful life filled with terrible things, beautiful cripples who rip off our wings as we silently suffer their arrows & slings, desecrate, suffocate as it smothers and clings.
Brain slowly melting like butter on toast, I use it the least when I need it the most
Martians & cretins, with numbers in millions, they slither and slide seeming rather reptilian.
Love lies and it goes like this, I will garnish your body with my spastic kiss.
Lost my life when I lost control, it’s a fine line, but it’s not my own…

It steals you away with a madness at night, burns through your soul, this acetylene knife.
Takes away all the things that I once took for granted, ravaged my cage as I raged and I ranted.
As loud as the silence inside my head, should have run for the hills, took cover
instead now I live in the streets and the whole world’s my home.
It’s a hard life, and it’s getting old…

Still taking a thrashing with gnashing of teeth, a healthy disguise, a sick underneath. My head is still ringing, better answer the phone
It’s a timeline, I put it on hold.

You can be a go-getter or get it to go, from the firestorms above to the hellstrom below. We can burn and return to the scene of the crime, it’s a fine line, it gets finer with time…

I believed, was deceived, bought into this disease. You can **** it & sell it, or will it to me. Sainted babies paint rattles, then fall out of trees. Legs dissolving, devolving, return to the seas.
So show that you know me, then ******* to bits. Re-assemble the parts and see where they fit. I got holes in the soles of my shoes from a lifetime spent running away, gunning for the fine line.

Left my guts in your gutter, my brain on your stairs. Lost my nerve in your universe, now I don’t dare. I could live like a king in your starvation zone, or I could be Zeus in the ghettos of Rome.
Ignoble and cruel, indisposed disposition. Sue yourself lawyer, heal thyself physician. Jesus died for the sins for which we still atone, it’s a fine line, but it’s not my own…
(c) 1995 PreMortem Publishing
Feb 2015 · 477
regular einstein
Mahatma Jones Feb 2015
uncommon sense -
this bitterness is all my own as i ponder
in this loneliness i've made my home
an empty room - looking like some prehistoric wonder
watching over seasons as i crumble, grumble, stumble
and mumble something crude about my desperate situation.

logic states: actions create an equal amount of reactions with sometimes dire consequences and honestly, i can't remember the last time anyone's looked at me
as if they could even see what's left behind this veil of relativity
what's left of me...

sadly now, the figuring of light is all that matters
as delicate yet brutal figures draw me near
an elegant and prehistoric wonder
i wonder why we had to learn of this vast theory of changes
light years away, lost amongst these promises and whispers...
(c) 1995 PreMortem Publishing
Feb 2015 · 812
Slaughter on 13th Street
Mahatma Jones Feb 2015
Curse my **** for making the rules!
Curse my **** out of the best schools!
Curse the **** that’s been my main tool.
I could have been a dancer...

Curse my ****, willing to please me;
Curse my ****, it’s sick and it’s ******.
Curse my ****, when it’s hard I’m so easy.
I might have been a doctor...

Curse my **** for making me cruel!
Curse the **** that makes me a fool!
Curse my **** for blowing my cool!
I might have become king!

Curse my ****, so hard and so ruthless!
Curse my ****, it bites but it’s toothless!
Curse my ****, it’s god and it’s useless.
I could have been a poet..

Curse my **** for it is my ruler.
Curse the **** that will use me to ***** ya.
Curse my ****, or should I say “Hallelujah!”
(I could have been a woman…)
(c) 1985 PreMortem Publishing
Feb 2015 · 2.3k
My friend Gerard
Mahatma Jones Feb 2015
My friend Gerard, (who is alive), looks like an Arabian slave-boy, though swarthier and longer of hair than Tony Curtis; an olive –skinned Mowgli, ape boy of Kipling’s  “Jungle Book”, although I have never seen Gerard swinging through any trees, nor eating any insects, nor even kissing a sultan’s foot. But looks can be deceiving, or receiving, with the proper pen, the zen pen of a poet, this proper poet who lives upstairs with his multitude of books piled on the floors, walking on Whitman, sitting on Shakespeare; tripping over Ginsberg, sleeping on Sartre; not a single shelf for this Jung man.
“A place for everything, and for everything it’s place”, he stands and stares out of a window overlooking the jungle of five-foot high weeds that serves as our backyard and wonders aloud “whither Oregon?”; questions our alleged enlightened sense of awareness, his disposition toward liberalness in a world gone madder than usual. Have I convinced him yet, my naïve, trusting neighbor? Yes, he realizes with a sigh that it is so, now that he has finally succumbed and bought a thirteen inch, black & white television of his own, now he can see with his own brown eyes in his own living room, far off wars, instant coffee & instant karma, depersonalized tragedies, faceless fatalities, insidious soap operas and humorless sitcoms, adverse advertisements, Howard Stern; “whither sanity?” we both cry and laugh out loud at this mediocre media, the global sewage, the Marshall McClueless, me and Gerard Rizza, my friend who is alive.

Gerard, (who is healthy), is gay, yet straighter than most men, and has been complaining quite a bit about the ferry service lately; contemplating a move off of Staten Island, and leaving his sporadic substitute teaching gig at a nearby high school, a mere six block walk from our house atop Winter Hill, where he is trying to convince me, a wide-eyed cynic, that a blank, white, unused canvas, surrounded by a wooden picture frame hung upon his wall is indeed a work of art; the job is very convenient, but again the ******* about the ferry, not the boat ride per se, but the incongruities of the ****** schedule, which anybody who has ever just missed a three a.m. boat and had to wait for an hour in the Hierynomous Bosch triptych known as the Whitehall Ferry terminal ,will definitely attest to; and Gerard has this thing about Staten Islanders, like the homophobes at a recent anti-peace rally in New Dorp, supporting the carpet bombing of an oil rich yet still poor third-world country, throwing beer cans at him and his companions while shouting “we know where you live, *******!”. Rizz came home that evening, visibly shaken and pale, (not his usual olive-skinned self), knocked on my door and pleaded “whither ******?”. I went upstairs, sat on his couch and rolled a joint. Gerard puts on the new 10,000 Maniacs tape and tries, once again, to bait me in a conversation about his “work of art”, my work of naught; he speaks of the horrific details of his day. “Isn’t this picture of Doc Gooden on my refrigerator door proof enough of my manhood, my patriotic intent, for those *******? The ******’ Mets, fuh chrissakes!” We sit out on his porch, watching the sun set over our backyard jungle as Natalie sings wireless Verdi cries, and I pass the burning joint to Gerard, my friend who is still healthy.

My friend Gerard, who is *** positive, was quite possibly a cat in a former life, probably a Siamese, thin, dark and aloof; yes, I can see ol’ Rizz now, sprawled out on an old tapestry rug, getting his belly scratched by his owner, perhaps Emily Dickinson or Georgia O’Keefe, Rizz purring like the engine of an old bi-winged barnstormer; abruptly rolls over, gets on all fours, tail waving *****, slinks over to lap water out of a bowl marked “Gerard”. He’d sleep all day on books and original manuscripts, and play all night amongst oil & acrylic, knocking over an occasional blank canvas, which he, in a future incarnation, will try to convince me, in his feline manner, is art. Sitting and staring from his usual spot on the windowsill, his cat eyes blink slowly as he wonders, “whither dinner?”; and begins to clean himself with tongue and paw, this cat who might be Gerard, my friend who is *** positive.

Gerard, who is sick, recently moved to Manhattan, Chelsea, to be precise, in with his best friend; and has stopped ******* about the Staten Island ferry, having far more pressing matters to ***** about, i.e. the ever-rising cost of homeopathic medicine and the lack of coverage for holistic and alternative care; any number of political and social concerns (Gerard was never the silent type); the lateness of his first published book of poems, entitled “Regard for Junction”; his rapidly deteriorating health, etc., etc.; and is now a true city dweller, a zen denizen, a proper poet with high regard for junction. That’s all that remains when it’s all over anyway, this junction, that junction, petticoat junction, petticoat junction – “I always wanted to **** the brunette sister”, I’d once told him; “I prefer uncle Joe!”, he laughingly replied; dejection, rejection, reclamation, defamation, cremation, conjecture, conjunction, all junctions happening at the same time, at now, a single place, a single moment, this forever junction with Gerard, my friend who is dying.

My friend Gerard, who is dead, officially passed from this life on a Saturday morning in early April, a mere two weeks before his junction with publication, although Gerard my friend passed away much earlier, leaving a sick and emaciated body behind to play host to his bedside guests, to help bear the pain of his family and friends; so doped-up on morphine, no longer able to remember any names, he called me “*****” when I entered the hospital room, where this barely physical manifestation of what had once been Gerard Rizza was being kept alive like the barest glimmer of hope, and displayed like some recently fallen leader, lying in state;  “whither Gerard withers” I thought, saying goodbye to this Rizza impersonator, this imposter, this visitor from a shadow world, an abstraction of a friend, whom the nurses told us, his disbelieving visitors, was our friend Gerard, who though technically still alive, was already dead.

My friend Gerard, who is laughing
My friend Gerard, who is singing
My friend Gerard, who is coughing
My friend Gerard, who is sleeping
My friend Gerard, who is holy
My friend Gerard, who is missed.
(c) 1994 PreMortem Publishing
Feb 2015 · 1.7k
Paris is burning
Mahatma Jones Feb 2015
Paris is burning.
Tar streets boil in ecstasy as cobblestones shudder in fear.
The city is ablaze, a cataclysmic uproar,
multitudes of disheveled artisans carrying scorched canvasses,
singed paintbrushes and smoldering memory kits,
each individually packaged in flesh encased animal bags.
Flames leap from every heart,
racing down fire escapes into the arms of loved ones
who fret in the streets below.
Sidewalks hiss "Pleeeeassse"
then explode in a thunderous
"OH NO!"

Paris is burning.
Her watercolor tears, not out of sadness
but out of habit.
Rainbow stains for sinners and gentle madmen alike.
It's the end of love.

Paris is burning.
City officials, wearing smoke scented jackets and incandescent alibis,
(both in dire need of laundering),
tell ethnic jokes to the starving hordes of pressmen and reporters
who clamor impatiently outside.
A thousand horrible deaths search through the rubble
for possible survivors, insuring that there are none.
"these two rabbis walk into a bar, see.."

Paris is burning.
Centuries, like antique floral wallpaper,
turn brown, then curl at the edges,
rising in a spiral of thick, black,
gargoyle infested smoke.
It's the end of love.

Paris is burning.
C'est l'aroma fantastique in the air,
ah, but what is it? Escargot? Et vignon, flambeau, of course,
charred bouef, roast canard a l'orange, merci beaucoup;
Don't forget the '59 Cabernet du Normandy,
sipped slowly at a favored cafe but no, wait,
what is this, no.
It has all gone now, up in flames, all up in flames
merde..
so, you go to eat at the new McDonalds,
at the foot of the Eiffel Tower,
built in nineteen eighty-four
by a group of devout new-worlders and,
in the spirit of goodwill and brotherhood
that generally pervades these types of events,
shipped to France in a peaceful exchange
for another sculptural wonder,
the Statue of You-Know-Whatitty.
The enormous expense of this
gargantuan publicly funded project
was explained to the funding public as
a "social experiment", a test
to resolve, once and for all,
which of these two nations
is technologically superior to the other,
by determining which of the icons of modern civilization,
the fast food chain or the statue,
will best endure the ravages of time,
but alas, now,
as both the Tower de Eiffel and the Arches of Gold
are melting into one grande candle du ****,
France, it would seem, is up by one.

"Paris is burning", I thought,
"it's the end of love.",
when I first noticed the young hitchhiker standing by the road,
both lovely and lonely as life itself.
"Get in", I muttered, whilst the Louvre exploded
and was incinerated in the
thermonuclear meltdown at Chernobyl;
the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame were defeated at Waterloo,
and Quasimodo was traded to Cleveland for two femme fatales,
plus a hero to be named at a later date;
Joan of Arc got burned in an insider trading scandal;
Marie-Antoinette gave head to the Reichstag when
Napoleon deserted;
Descartes was discarded along with some rocks, worms and trees;
while the Seine simply evaporated,
and, two weeks later,
fell as rain over Nagasaki.

You see, my desire for her was so overpowering,
I would gladly have burned down any city
that she might have asked me to.

"Have you heard?",
I asked, as she got into the car,
lightly brushing my thigh with her hand,
"Paris is burning.
It's the end of love..."
(c) 1983 PreMortem Publishing

— The End —