Just Walk Away

Even now I remember

all the times I walked away,

each memory an ember

ready to flare day to day

with the fire I felt in rage

when wrongs were done unto me,

but I chose to turn the page

on a scorched-earth policy —

yet rage remains, even now

when long removed from those days,

burning brazier, ashen brow,

aglow and blind in the blaze.

Stubborn, I clutch to cinder

and blow on it with each groan,

growing thus wrathful tinder,

but burning myself alone.

(A variation on the Buddhist quote about hatred being a poison you drink, expecting the object of your antipathy to die.)

Encoiled

Split apart, right down the middle,
between inertia and action,
confused as if by a riddle
and divided like a fraction,
you speak to me with a forked tongue
of your loyalties and the law,
but this is not what truly stung—
it was how you unhinged your jaw
to consume the totalities
and digest the contradictions,
the post-modern modalities
like coils fattened on such fictions,
all the while engulfing your tail
so as to not lose track of it,
the recursive act soon to fail
as you eat yourself, bit by bit.

Secret Tongues

 Secret Tongues

 “But they are so crude, Mary,” Elizabeth remarked, setting down her cup of tea on the arbor’s table.  A slight Summer breeze made the cool, foliated shadows wag like tongues all around them.  “What possible enjoyment could be had in a servant’s company?”

 “He is well versed in many pastimes,” Mary said.  A hot flash of redness flared in her pale forehead and breast.  It was so red as to nearly match her auburn hair.  It was not a shade of embarrassment, however, nor fury.  She fanned herself leisurely, despite the cool breeze and shade.  “Many a singularly fine pastime.”

 “He is handsome,” Elizabeth said.  A smile betook her face, as if she had tasted something quite sour and wished to hide it.  “I will grant you that.  But there are many handsome gentlemen in London of equal looks, and far superior wealth.”

 “I have no need of wealth,” Mary said.  “I am an only child, as you know, and subject to no male relative who might contend my claim to my father’s estate.  Moreover, Desmond is excellent with his hands in a manner entirely unknown in gentlemanly circles.”

 Elizabeth cast a curious glance to Jenny, nettled.  The latter was too concerned with a white ribbon in her hair to notice.  Elizabeth chided her.

 “Jenny, you are of an age that ribbons such as those should be abandoned utterly.  And you are married.  Married women have no need of girlish ribbons.”

 “These ribbons were blessed by Father Willoughby last Sunday,” Jenny said, still attempting to tighten the ribbon.  “They are marks of chastity.”

 “But you are married,” Elizabeth argued with an irritated shake of her head.  Her black curls quivered, tied up atop her head and away from the nape of her neck like some tragic Greek heroine from bygone times.  “Chastity is impossible for a proper conclusion to such a ceremony.”

 “To the contrary,” Jenny said fussily, pulling at the golden strands of her hair.  “William and I have decided to remain chaste for the time being, even while in wedlock.  When he is…when we are ready to produce children, the ribbons shall come down.”

 “And the petticoats shall go up,” Mary said, giggling.  Elizabeth frowned at her, which only provoked greater giggles.  Mary sipped her tea to regain her composure.  Birds sang in the distance.  Evening wore on slowly, the sun descending reluctantly.

 “You are a naughty creature!” Jenny exclaimed, encrimsoning as a cherry unclaimed from the stem.

 “And why should I not be?” Mary posited, seriously.  “I am a woman of independence and means.  I need answer to no one.”

 “It is a luxury not all can afford,” Elizabeth admitted begrudgingly.  “Nor do I think it one I might indulge, for I cannot discern how it could be worth the price.”

 “A failure of experience,” Mary said, sympathetically, “leads to a failure of imagination.  Were that your husband could be capable of speaking Desmond’s tongue!  You would never wish to leave the house, either for society or for a fresh prospect.  Nor would Paris or Rome offer, in all their splendours, temptation enough to lure you thither.”

 Jenny frowned, then finally released the ribbon in her golden hair.  “Surely he could speak such a tongue anywhere in the world and you would find yourself doubly satisfied in being abroad and being in desirous company.”

 “Not so,” Mary said.  “For it would presume impudence and impropriety.  Desmond is apt  at his tongue, but not at many others, and so his low-breeding would be immediately apparent, even to a Parisian crumpet.”  She tapped a finger upon her chin thoughtfully.  “Especially to a Parisian crumpet.”

 The conversation now at an end, they nodded and sipped their tea.  Mary looked very pleased in all accounts, whereas Jenny and Elizabeth were perplexed, albeit in different regards.  Another of Jenny’s ribbons had come undone, and so she was very vexed in setting it right atop her head.  Elizabeth frowned, casting furtive eyes of judgment sidelong at her host and friend.

 “It is all jolly-folly,” she said meaningfully.

 For Mary’s part, she was so warm and glowing with a language only she knew among the three of them that when the wind grew chillier, she did not mind it, even as her friends shivered.  The trees themselves seemed to shiver, too, for the shadows stretched long and the sun slowly sank into its shadowy bed.

 “My, I should be getting home,” Jenny said, hugging her shawl about her shoulders.  “Arthur will be wondering at my absence.  Though, I doubt overmuch.  He loves spending time with his schoolyard friend, John.  They are inseparable, you know.  They get along so well together.  Much more, I am afraid, than even Arthur and I get along.  But we are young, and our marriage fresh.  I am sure there is time enough to grow together.”

 It was Elizabeth’s and Mary’s turn to exchange shrewd glances.

 “Will he keep you warm, Jenny?’ Mary asked, mischievously.

 “With a fire, perhaps,” Jenny said, misunderstanding.  “Arthur is so thoughtful that he always insists that my bedroom be tended to most, often to the neglect of his own bedroom.”

 “Separate bedrooms?’ Mary said, suppressing a smile.  “But how does Arthur tend to your fire, then?”

 “Alfred, his butler, tends to it when the night comes on with its drafts,” Jenny said simply.  Naively.  “Alfred uses the poker rather deftly, like a wizard conjuring fire.”

 “So, too, does my Desmond,” Mary said, barely suppressing a giggle.  “But Elizabeth,” she said, turning to her other friend, “what is the arrangement between yourself and your husband, Matthew?”

 Elizabeth cleared her throat, though she could not clear the sharp edge of vexation in her voice.

 “Matthew and I sleep in separate chambers,” she said, as a judge delivering a bitter verdict.  “ I cannot abide his smoking…or…”  She faltered a moment.  “…or his attendance to my fire.”

 Mary gave Elizabeth a sympathetic smile, patting her gloved hand.  There was a goodly deal of condescension in the latter act.  “I am sure there is a servant apter at the art.  My Desmond is indeed a wizard, conjuring flames with a mere wag of his tongue.”  She smiled puckishly.  “He speaks whole infernos into being.  And they keep me warm throughout the most frigid of nights.”

 Again, Elizabeth cleared her throat, shifting uncomfortably.  She eyed her red-headed friend enviously.

 “I do not see how it should take much art to tend a fire,” Jenny opined, obliviously.  “Alfred is nearly senile, and yet he accomplishes the task very adequately.  At times even I tend to my own fire, exciting it with a clumsy poker.  The propensities of fire, and the plenitude of wood, should be sufficient for the need, no matter how novice the pyrolater.”

 Mary and Elizabeth exchanged glances—the former, sly and mirthful; the latter, shrewd and irritated.

 “Indeed,” Mary said.  “Any sufficient measure of wood may feed a fire, but here is something to be praised in that heathenistic affinity in the art of pyromancy.  Why, I feel as a wicker woman all aflame with…passion…when Desmond speaks his special tongue to me.”  She laughed with a girlish cadence of unconscientious joy.  “I am utterly consumed by it, you know.  It is always Beltane when he is speaking his special tongue to me.”

 Elizabeth scowled.  “One can lose one’s soul to such heathenism,” she said, her voice cold with something akin to resentment.  “We must be wary of the Devil’s tongue.  It can sway angels to lower stations with debased practices and unworthy company.”

 “The waves lap wonderfully in my Lake of Fire,” Mary said, too pleased to be affronted, and too emboldened to be restrained.  She tucked a curl of red hair behind her ear.  “Maybe Lucifer was right.  Maybe it is better to rule in Hell than serve in Heaven.”

 Jenny gasped, a dainty hand to her little lips.  “But your soul, Mary!  Truly, we must attend church and repent together!  Father Willoughby will rectify these mortal failings.  There is no salvation except through Christ, and so you must recant such confusion in your compass.  Otherwise it will cost you everlastingly.”

 Mary regarded her earnest friend with a condescending smirk—tight lipped, with a nodding of her head.  She then turned to Elizabeth, the latter stiff-shouldered and scowling openly now.

 “There are times when Desmond’s heathen tongue is so persuasive that I could die in the moment and be eternally contented.  Whatever lay beyond that moment of…exultation…is nought but dreary, drafty winds through a dusty hallway.  The world burns away with the intensity of it, and all else becomes as soot beneath my feet.”

 “And what of the tongues wagging behind one’s back?” Elizabeth demanded, setting her teacup down hard for emphasis on the point.  “They can raze reputations and family legacies with the tempests they whip up.  Have you ever paused to give thought to that?”

 “They are impotent cinders,” Mary replied lightly.  “As impotent as the cries of herons on the Isle of Skye.  All is obliterated in the inferno.”

 “The tongues of fire lap at lost souls in the inferno,” Jenny said, so far amiss in the conversation that her input was no more than the whispers of the breeze through the arbor.  Her two friends ignored her.

 “And what of friendships?” Elizabeth continued, still scowling.  “What of the cost such heresies might entail in regard to them?”

 For the first time, Mary’s smile and gleeful tone faltered.  “I…I should hope that any true friend might weather the infernos for the sake of a friend as devout in her loyalty and its reciprocation.”

 Elizabeth stared hard at her friend, her thin lips set in a narrowly compressed line.

 “You take more than you give, Mary,” she said.  “It is a problem plaguing many relationships, it seems to me.”

      ***

 Desmond stood at the foot of the bed like any butler awaiting orders.  Tall, lean, and with a grimly-set expression of diligence, he was the very figure of decorum and servitude.  Except he was out of uniform.  Very much out of uniform.

 Mary lay on the four-poster bed, watching Desmond with a cat-catches-canary smile upon her face.  She, too, was very much out of uniform, and spread her freckled arms, fixing her fine, smooth fingers upon the headboard.  Her pale body flickered orange in the clandestine candlelight.  There was no one else in the entirety of her estate.  She had sent the other servants home to visit relatives or friends or lovers or whoever would preoccupy their evenings.  She did not care.  The only interest stood before her.

 “Come now, Desmond,” she said.  “Attend me.”

 “I will,” the denuded man said.  “But first…”

 He hesitated, falling silent.  She could see by the flaring candlelight the ambiguity etched upon his handsome features.

 “What do you want?” she asked.  “Less chores around the estate?  A bauble?  I could get something for you while I am away in London next week, visiting Vivien.  She knows the quaintest shops where nearly anything can be purchased.”

 “I mean to accompany you in London,” he said.  “But not in a servant’s capacity.”

 Mary cackled in delight.  “Oh, you have a mercenary heart!  But you know such things cannot be.”

 “And for what reason so?” he demanded.  “You have said many times that you do not care if high society should know of our attachment.”

 Her tone was sobered now; incredulous.  “It is not an attachment, Desmond.  Do not forget yourself.”

 Desmond swayed as if stricken, and Mary’s tone softened.

 “I would not have you away from my estate,” she said.  “You know I cannot trust anyone to see to it but you.”

 The fire in the hearth behind Desmond fluttered to one side, as if a cold draft had hurled itself headlong into it.

 “Such patronage does me much honor,” he said, his face dark and his tone sour.  “To condescend to someone so low as myself esteems you as to a saint.”

 “I will not tolerate insolence, Desmond,” Mary snapped.  “You are a servant.  In this service do you serve me, still.  But that is the total of it insomuch as we are bound.  To stoop to pretending that you are my equal would be to lose face.  Not in society’s estimation, but my own.  And I will never shame myself, nor depreciate my self-worth through such short-shrift.”

 “So I am nothing more to you than a servant,” he said, bitterly.  “You view me as just another pleasure to be taken for granted.  Our intimacy is one strictly of mistress and servant.”

 “You are well-compensated,” she said, sitting up and sliding forward.  She reached out with both hands and took hold of his wrist, attempting to draw him down onto the bed, toward her spread legs.  “Come, Desmond.  I will permit you to sleep here tonight, beside me, if you like.  Is that the intimacy you require?”

 Desmond drew his hand away, and her coaxing smile hardened to an irritated frown.

 “Desmond,” she said, “do not ruin this lovely evening with your unwarranted umbrage.  We could be both of us quite satisfied if you would simply surrender to the strong instinct inherent in your breeding…”

 Desmond yanked his arm free from his mistress at once, turned, and strode to his uniform, gathering it up and donning it in the dimming glow of the hearth.

 “Where are you going?” she demanded, her voice pitched with alarm.

 “I have attended you in all ways a husband might,” he said.  “I have seen to your finances.  I have seen to your servants.  I have seen to your needs, whatever myriad ways they might manifest.  Yet, you have always neglected me in all respects a man should be afforded by the woman he loves and to whom he is devoted.  I had hopes for a relationship by daylight such as we share by moonlight.  But you value me no more than a beast in the field, wanting me for nothing but to expend your carnal propensities.  Nor are you equal in those indulgences, oftentimes affording me no reciprocation pleasure whereas I have selflessly given and given unto a cornucopia of giving!”

 “Desmond, please do not leave me now!”  She leapt up from her bed, hurrying to him in a bereft state of undress.  “Please, do not leave me alone!  Come to bed with me.  Please.”

 He paused at buckling his belt, almost looking at her.  But the anguish overtaking his face was dismissed and dignity resumed itself with an austere measure in his demeanour.  He donned his shirt and jacket, not bothering with his tie.  He headed to the dark portal that was the door.

 “Please tend to the fire tonight,” Mary pleaded, following after him.  She lay a trembling hand upon his shoulder.  “That’s all I wish.  You do not have to join me in bed.  Just…just tend to the fire and keep me warm.”

 “Tend to it yourself,” he retorted.  He opened the door and hastened out into the dark hallway, leaving her behind.

 Mary felt quite cold, and walked aimlessly about her bedroom like a lost soul.  She had come, it seemed, to the Ninth Circle of Hell.  Her womanhood was now a frozen lake.  Her heart gnawed on Judas in bitter disappointment.  She looked into the embers of the darkening hearth and felt the world grow cold to its core.

      ***

 Elizabeth held her legs apart as Matthew, her husband, thrust against her.  It was, as always, over after a handful of minutes.  He groaned, convulsed, and then collapsed onto the bed—onto her— and lay there, heaving and breathless against her breasts.  Afterward, she looked upon the wrinkled, flabby and pale body of her old husband as he sprawled over her, panting.  Pale, loose skin— reminiscent of candle wax long ago melted and now cold—gleamed in the light from the hearth.  She was reminded of a warm, wet slug.  She shuddered, and not from pleasure.

 After a few moments, he rolled off of her and to the side, crumpled like a leaf in Winter.

 Elizabeth’s gown was hot, or so it seemed.  She flung it from her body, and kicked away the sheets near her feet.  She wished for a cold shower.

 “You will catch a cold,” her husband said, his breath labored still.

 “I am likely for a fever,” she said, laying stiffly now, as if a frozen body in the snow.  Her black hair was arrayed about her head, like the halo of some martyr.

 They said nothing else.  Matthew lay in bed a while longer, then began to crawl toward the edge, slowly, painfully, slipping out and onto his shaky feet.  He leaned on his mahogany cane, limping to his nightgown.  Shakily, he lifted the nightgown up and over his head, down his cadaverous body.  He struck up a cigar before he was to the door, blowing smoke into the dark.  The flaring faggot illuminated his vulture features for a flashing moment just before he disappeared through the door and down the hall.

 Again, Elizabeth shuddered.  She leaned toward the bedside table, taking the bottle of wine in hand.  She did not bother with a drinking glass, but kissed the bottle more ardently than she had ever kissed her husband.  Drinking herself into a stupor, she set the bottle down—tumbling it to the Turkish carpet below—and sprawled insensate upon the bed, her skin bare to the crisp, cold air.  She welcomed the cold, and the oblivion.  She welcomed the scorn that was a frigid draft through her bedroom.

 She hoped the cold would find her husband in his bedroom and snuff out his smouldering cigar light.  There were times when she wished it would find her, and snuff out her own light.

      ***

 Jenny lay naked beneath the heaving form of Alfred, moaning in pleasure as the butler rutted upon her.  It was past midnight and her husband Arthur had gone to bed, joined by John.  It was an arrangement both sides found very pleasing.

 After Alfred finished, and he had helped Jenny finish, Jenny lay panting to one side of her bed while the butler rose to gather his clothes.  He did so swiftly and economically, with no fuss or words.  He was much younger than Jenny had said to her two friends while at tea together earlier than day.  Virile and somber and handsome and, most importantly, discreet, he was just what Jenny wanted in a servant assigned to such duties.  He opened and closed the door with tactful silence, his lean frame disappearing down the dark hallway without the faintest whisper of a footfall.

 The butler gone, and the door closed, Jenny sighed in great satisfaction.  The warmth of the recent rigors still smoldered within her, hot as the hearth across the room.  She spoke aloud to herself.

 “Discretion best serves mischief alongside shrewd naivete,” she said.  “Strategic naivete.  It really does make one impervious to the wagging of tongues, whether they be sheathed in the mouths of society, or one’s own friends.  There is no shield like naivete against prattle.  They may demean the naivete itself, but what does it accomplish if even a million tongues whip at a mirage in the desert?  They may wag themselves dry, but the mirage remains, and so distracts from my little oasis that I keep to myself.”

 Having thus spoken at leisure, and in an ease equally earnest, she reached a hand up to the white ribbons in her fair hair.  They were tautly tied.  She undid them with a pinch of her fingers and twist of her wrist.  Her golden hair tumbled down wildly.  The white ribbons lay in a heap, like discarded snake skins.  They would coil there, in their little nest, until the morning when she would take them up once again and tie the tongues of the world up in incessant gossip entirely amiss of the actual truth.

Tempered Steel

By the pain of flame and hammer fall

thereby forged is Man, so one, so all;

by pain and trial and sacrifice,

Man takes shape when wrought within the vice;

some are beaten so smooth and so fine

they seem perfect casts, and, so, divine,

whereas others are much less imbued

with such work, being quite rough and crude;

some are discarded, and some stillborn —

all are melted down when old…outworn;

some serve as swords, and some hoes or plows,

some as bowls, or rings for marriage vows,

and some have edges as sharp as blades,

though intended for the softer trades,

and so cut the Hands which made such slaves

with Damascus folds of flowing waves,

drawing blood to infuse tempered steel

and remind gods what it means to feel.

Battle Of The Wits

I prefer Saki to Wilde

like a gleeful little child

too busy throughout his day

with the games he likes to play

to eat but in little bites

the sour-sweet dessert delights,

each story packing a punch

that does enough as a lunch

for an intellect in need

of some nourishment to feed,

and, besides, he does not cloy,

being subtle, this choirboy

whose wit prefers not to preach,

but seeks with humor to teach

lessons acerbic, yet smooth,

like a tonic meant to soothe,

yet burns when it’s ingested

to purge someone phlegm-chested.

I hold nothing against Wilde

nor Dorian Gray, so styled

with wit as to be satire

of satire itself, a pyre

in which irony aflame

immolates the author ’s shame —

an enlightenment most quaint

despite its destructive taint

that hounded him in his life

and cost him his lovely wife.

But while both men have now won

readers generations on

and lived the same span of years

while closeted for their fears,

Saki died before such fame

could make or break his strange name.

A sniper ’s gun found him out

in the trenches, at a shout

to snuff out a cigarette

only to die himself, yet

even his death was satire —

for, ere the sniper did fire,

Saki sought to ward the eye

of Death, so none else might die,

but, in so doing, passed from

service, life, till kingdom come.

Saki fought and died in France,

enlisting despite the chance

of the combat and horror

well known in the First World War

whereas Wilde died destitute

in Paris, in ill repute,

not that I blame him for it

or for each close-minded Brit

that despised him for his book

or the astute views he took;

it is just that Saki knew

how to keep just out of view

(save when in a sniper ’s sight

in the early morning light),

but the point is simply this:

Saki did not take the piss.

He loved Britain, in his way,

and fought for it, till the day

he was laid to rest, at last,

which showed that his writing past

was love of life, of folly,

and though sharp, too, was jolly

and he critiqued Britain well

with the tales he had to tell,

proving satire is best done

of what you love most, or none,

for it is, otherwise, spite

and, so, propaganda —trite,

of little substance or worth,

and very little of mirth.

Sharp, witty, and full of love:

thus does writing rise above

the pettiness it records

and thus deserves great rewards.

After all, life is a jest

told with great love, if told best.

The Demiurge

Before the priest can baptize
a beloved son or daughter,
before a child’s startled cries
from the chill of holy water,
we are baptized in ways old
before Christ and the Ancient Flood,
before such myths could take hold—
baptized in piss and shit and blood…
from out of the trembling womb,
just-so, anointed at each birth
and, just-so, unto the tomb:
piss and shit and blood unto earth.

Patterned Chaos

Through my dreams the cat was leaping,

Calico patchwork, like the old quilt

beneath which I laid, silent, sleeping

as childhood memories brimmed and spilt.

Hind-legs thrusting, her forepaws splayed

to catch herself after a bold spring;

gentle in grace, yet deadly made

by the forge of Life, that ruthless thing.

Beautiful motion, artful form,

instinct and cunning made manifest,

yet snuggling, purring, friendly, warm,

her claws retracted, and nose to chest.

To think a killer could be kind

and want to cuddle close to a heart;

to think of all we leave behind

as Life plies its slapdash-patterned art.

The patches jigsawed together,

a creature of chaos and of laws;

temperamental as weather

and yet smoothly playing on her paws.

Leaping!  Sleeping!  Wild as a child

forgone to the needs of ringing clocks,

bound to a moment, reconciled

with its self-apparent paradox.

And so I dreamt of her patterns,

a feline form from out of my past

who, just so, leapt and slept at turns

like childhood joys that pass by too fast.

The Answer

I have the answer,

easy to do, DIY,

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Just trust me with your

life.

Here ’s the answer:

Are you ready?

Are you ready to change your life?

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I believe in you.

I believe you can change

(my bank account).

You have to trust me, though

You have to let me help you

by helping me with

my six-figure per annum.

The answer is so easy, so simple

(minded).

You believe me, don ’t you?  If you

don ’t

then you will never get any better.

You will remain a victim and a

loser

for your entire life.

The answer can change you, though.

It can make things right.

Rectify you and your world,

make you the arbiter of your own life.

And so simple…so easy

(to fool).

For a few dollars more the answer will

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Look, your life is a

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It is not condemned.

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I have the blueprints right here.

When I tell you the answer you will

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 Yes, that ’ll do it.

 So, the answer is…very straightforward.  Did I tell you about the time the answer helped a man pull himself up by his bootstraps and become a billionaire?  It is a skill, but it is an instinct before that.  You must hone it, and it will in turn hone you.  Christ knew it, and Buddha, and Churchill, and Roosevelt.  Both Roosevelts.

It is an essence.  It is integral

to the whole cosmos.  And

it can transform you

into your own self-help guru.

You first need to give me

a few dollars, though, and

I will give you the

answer.

It will change

(short-change)

your life..

The Proud Boys

Hipster brigade

with the sideburn fade.

NRA lite

joking/not joking alt Right,

passive-aggressive simps

pretending to be chauvinistic chimps,

throwing poo

into the milieu

for a troll-lol-lol —

each a petty asshole.

Gavin McInnis, the founder,

likes a big rear-pounder,

taking a dildo up the downside

of his brown-slide,

on live tv

to prove he

is a man ’s man,

a bro-stan

of Ayn Rand,

conflating his own hand

with gov overreach

up the breech.

And by this token

and that token

and that token

they think the Woken

are thus broken,

but useful idiots

are also vidiots —

technicolor fools

over which the new rules

of tribalism

and bible schism

are isms themselves,

sprawling across untidy shelves

and crowned in tinfoil hats,

contentious with so many @s.

Guns, god, and glory,

or so goes the story

they tell themselves at night

in their monitor light,

but the keyboard alt-right-shift

and the libertarian thrift

only go so far,

like a shooting star,

and so they tweet and greet,

meet down the street

in Cabela ’s gear

like a Camo steer,

pretend-soldier boys

with compensating toys,

assault rifles held tight

in case there is a fight

from their instigating,

screaming, “Race-baiting! ”

as they take aim

like that movie by the name,

“Falling Down ”,

but looking like a clown.

No, mother is not proud

of sons overly loud

as they grandstand

in their KKK-Pop boy band.

Real men don ’t whine

at their own punchline,

and pwning themselves just so

no one else can have a go

is like a skit full of snark

from the creators of South Park.

And this “jk ” defense

doesn ’t make any sense.

They are wired

and, some, Trump-inspired,

meming meaning into their days

in a Red Bull-and-bullshit haze,

playing at PR on youtube,

five rubles a newb,

in the comments section

with little self-reflection

while badmouthing Joe

on his Rogaine show

for doing his own thing

because they are Alex Jonesing

while hunkering down

and bunkering down

in a cyber stronghold —

for fuck ’s sake, their shit ’s getting old

The High Priest

A fly rests on the head of US Vice President Mike Pence as he takes notes during the vice presidential debate against US Democratic vice presidential nominee and Senator from California Kamala Harris in Kingsbury Hall at the University of Utah on October 7, 2020, in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Eric BARADAT / AFP) (Photo by ERIC BARADAT/AFP via Getty Images)

Behold! The most high priest
speaking false-tongued fictions
in a sprawl of corpses, a feast
to earn benedictions
from great Beelzebub,
the Hell Prince, Lord of Flies
who blesses maggot, worm, and grub,
and all death-fed likewise.