Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Delirium of Reason, Images by David LaChapelle


“Louie Louie, me gotta go”.

Richard Berry

We all came here through

the dark rumbling birth canal

of other rubble:

genetic recollections

of flame trees in Africa,

shady caves in Spain,

freezing Siberian steppes;

stepping numbly on

a path of frozen ocean,

building fires in a canyon

to sear the chased deer

with an arrow in its heart,

sleeping 2 meters

deep under the Armory

vibrating with rock music—

while the big river

pulses down a slalom run

of salmon hell-bent

on reproduction, Darwin’s

ghost urges the fish upstream.

We were the odd ones

streaming down the highway to

the Spanish Castle,

dancing and spawning dreams to

The Wailers’ “Louie Louie”.

In our innocence,

we refused to pick up the

burden of guilt, our

history trailing behind

us like an ancient snake’s skin

to be buried in

a common grave or sent home

in a body bag

from Vietnam, or other

places we ripped to pieces.


“Jesus, where has Nature gone?”

Neil Young

Christ’s passion, riding

in Bucephalus’ hoofprints,

leads to holy wars:

good shepherds against bad,

horns of plenty against piles

of rifle bullets,

oil rigs, a fractured ferris

wheel in the landscape

of mosques, in the dead soldier’s

hand a bloody Blackberry.

The technology

of death has taken over:

the more the car crashed

its performance was enhanced,

and Gulliver is tied down—

a Ken doll threatened

by 72 Barbies

in purple burkas.

Destruction and disaster:

what was paradise is hell,

and God may be dead,

but Jesus is my homeboy

so we will be saved;

the Old Testament prophets

were just along for the ride

to the old folks’ home

or the Alzheimer’s ashcan.

In this pop-up book

all is feast, and decadence

is insufficiency of

attainable things:

nothing can fill up the hole

left by the absence

of reason—the pretext for

erasing other species.


“My luck hasn’t run out yet.”

Keith Richards

In the Boston night

the former president’s hair

shines in the spotlight

while one of the Rolling Stones

enfolds his mother-in-law.

A concert begins:

the aging Italian

director jump cuts

the guts from Jumpin’ Jack Flash,

and it’s not all right—in fact

it is not a gas

at all, but an exercise

in releasing flies

from their coffins of amber

to sweat and melt on the stage

like tears going by,

or our imagination

running away with

us one more time, and going

absolutely nowehere, fast.

Art has dribbled down

to mad camera angles

smashing life open

like an over-ripe melon,

getting no satisfaction

and on to the next

kill—while Jagger’s horse’s teeth

splatter on the lens,

dance like piano keys—

and it’s only rock and roll.

When we arrive with

our suitcase at the world’s end—

and find that it’s gone—

will there be a new earth with

2 moons? Maybe not, for us.