Creeks running shallow in a dry dead kind of season
A coyote howls, profound.
Inside of a car with a license plate that reads Arkansas
A family is sitting parked in a rest stop on Interstate 20
One hundred and thirty odd miles outside of Odessa, Texas.
John Dandry just spent his last forty dollars on gas, milk, one pound of sliced turkey,
A loaf of white bread, two quarts of oil, one Hershey bar distributed two ways,
One large coffee also distributed two ways, and one scratch off lottery ticket;
Samuel and Carolyn in the back seat were distracted momentarily,
The sweetness of the chocolate a temporary tonic for boredom.
John and Margaret Dandry, in the the front seat passing a coffee,
Scratching that lottery ticket got them only a moment of bliss,
Thinking all that could be…
(Composed July 2004)
Placed in the pool of blood next to Raul Espinosa’s face
a tooth and piece of what looks like tongue,
he might have bit it,
doesn’t matter though
cuz the three cracked ribs on his left side collapsed his lung.
And I can still hear the laughing;
the hillbilly crackers
thinking that America had one this day
but America hadn’t won anything.
For Raul is as American as Amerigo Vespucia
And if you don’t know who that is
then loosely–loosely mind you–
kick another tooth out of Raul’s face
And see if bones played with enamel,
on a good day,
thrown in the circle
where your kids want to play
have this yet?
Nothing is American until boots start falling on it.
Bob Dylan can talk WWIII three blues;
I’ve seen the third war and aint nothing blue — nor all over baby–
it’s jazz for the information age
made up–abstract–anybody can play.
Talent isn’t anything that Raul didn’t have
or the chickenshit trash that murdered his ass.
It’s all blood and teeth and bits of tongue
talked with and lied about cut out to gums;
so you don’t see what I have seen.
And if you don’t see
then you have no American eyes.
You can’t take anything more from me
That hasn’t already been taken from me,
Except my life
And your are welcome to that, but know:
If you were to put together all the events,
People and problems in my life;
It would mean something–you would own it!
And having something, then,
On you hands, would make you responsible, no?
For that which you had stole;
For that which you owe;
All that you had taken me from me already…
But apart from screaming,
What you would have as proof?
The residual use, unless,
What you had done what was of no use,
Mere latency for you
And what you did, was done
For fun, as I went away
And for truth, what would you do
If you looked at yourself
And knew that, you too,
Were screaming into the darkness
That isn’t so much dark as
Absent of light?
But you are right and I admit,
There is no proof;
But for that very screaming
That you had all this time considered suspect
And absent of life(now)
All that there is of my life(and yours)
So, go ahead, and have it,
In my life, the first gun put in my face
Followed by the screamed words “I’ll kill you.”
Was in the hands of my father.
But that’s the proof;
I’ve had nothing to loose
Since three years old.
And it was a few thousand years before
Jesus told us, how his father forsook him
And I said, shit,
“We have a lot in common.”
Now, Kanye says you can’t tell him nothing;
But I’ll tell you and him something:
False prophets acting out indifference
From attention is store frontage
In a vacant strip mall.
It don’t take the biggest Jesus piece you ever saw
On for some necklace to be reckless.
Pride before fall shit.
And it doesn’t help us–
those who have lost everything.
And even with nothing, We are not all helpless.
We are living lives that only life can take from us.
I accept this as due course
That I’ve never had any surplus pride to sell;
Just the good sense to preserve in my mind
The people and places I care about
and who have cared about me.
I’m not hiding
So go ahead and try to kill me;
Take everything else from me;
Do me the favor that my father couldn’t
And finish this.
Or, do you not want to own something
Knowing it’s not yours?