Everyone here is cool, they listen to each other. There doesn’t seem to be any aggression. All the food is seasoned perfectly. The girls are pretty, but not intimidating. Parents nurture their children’s artistic tendencies, but never force it. The juke boxes play just the right combination of popular and obscure (but singable). Goals never seem out of reach. Critics are constructive. The weird kid gets laid…a lot. Politicians aren’t vague about the fact that they smoke/smoked weed. Bars don’t price gouge craft beer. Being lazy is accepted but not promoted. The girl at the liquor store wants to explain the difference between bourbon and rye, and make sure you get it. Fresh air isn’t a commodity enjoyed by those who can afford to leave. Yoga is still spiritual and not a yuppie trend.
…this started as some sort of themed commentary about a utopian dreamland and then I realized I was just describing Seattle. I need to get the fuck out of here.
Your job sucks. No matter what your ‘job’ is. You find ways to wallow in those little tediums that seemed so trivial in the beginning. They were just part of the gig. Those same few songs getting piped into the store somehow managed to give you a rash inside of your eardrum that could turn a buddhist monk against his brother. You used to sing to them. You’re not alone here. You’re young and you’re creative and your vibrant spirit is of no value in this world. Your opinion only sinks you deeper into the mire of the employee-employer relationship. It makes you that much more expendable in the “we’ll find another you in a minute” climate. A thousand other yous that would lick our boots for a whif of a steady check. Someone that will do what they’re told and appreciate the opportunity to do so. The job affords you all the trivialities and comforts that are outlined in our American birth right. We’ll inherit the guilt of a generation that raped and pillaged that ideal into a malignant tumor of insurmountable debt and a planet with black lungs and clogged arteries. That forward thinking and industrious machine stood on our father’s backs and dangled the carrot in front of them. Now, instead of having a million carrots to dangle, we’re directed to look at the picture of the carrot in the catalog that only comes with a lifetime subscription. We have to sit and listen to our yuppie asshole boss talk about their carrot and how they could use a few more a year to take a second vacation with their shitty yuppie kids. We have to sit still and try and believe our parents when they say the carrot still exists in this world as long as you work hard for it and never lose sight of it, as if that were possible, as their precious carrot ferments and rots out their guts. Their carrot that they borrowed against and hedged their bets on while the machine bet against them with their own chips. That same carrot that my future and the future of my unborn children was leveraged upon before I could even get a word in edgewise. So maybe it makes me lazy that I’m not particularly interested in having the biggest carrot in the world. How about I don’t give a shit about your carrot? Maybe instead of always going after that same fucking carrot everyone else is vying for, I’ll try to grow my own crop, with my own seeds, with my bare hands. Maybe I’ll watch it die year after year after year until some pathetic sprout becomes something to look at. Maybe it doesn’t even yield anything more than a moment of clarity and perspective against a landscape where everything seems to die without honor.
Yeah, we talk about it…
We wax about it.
Pacing outside of store fronts and chirp into plastic boxes.
This great premium and privileged past time of the sons and daughters of post war economy.
Whimpering graduate students sweating bullets on the exchange floor.
New coked out remix of the same song.
Marked up liquor. Watered down company.
We scratch until our death rattle, to make a system of chaos.
Punch lines lingering in ether for the cosmic joke being played on you.
You sit there, smiling like an asshole, thinking I’m talking about someone else.
While that little wheel spinning behind the glass has a lab rat hoping for traction on a path he was never meant to walk down.
But he talks about it.
He’ll wax about it.
Don’t know who this is…fucking great poem.
I used to shower six times a day trying to follow the water down the drain
but that never worked, so I threw myself over a clothesline
clothes-pinned your picture and called it a sun shower
and that always made me smile
how much safer it was than holding your breath until you turned purple
Someone told me time would erase you slowly,
carving out the dunes from a form.
Crossing party lines.
Lever snap, ballot cast out.
Nor another love should you mourn.
But you do.
You were warned.