RA Washington at The Lit in Cleveland – photo by JB
For Allen Ginsberg
This was not a generation
It was a genocide.
My corpses piled along internet apathy
Or strewn toward ghosts. The angry children
Fear and pose, play pasts to passive
Flick flowers, grave are you.
The postage stamp heroes we will not be.
This is no generation
For we alarm their shaking jowls
Rooted magic, napalm inside me.
Me for you
Me, this flinging and failing
Me, general of boys who weep gutters
Me, of women who sing at their stolen hoods
Clits singed proper, skirts up.
The money is looking
Me, of stark hovels, the conforming comfort.
Me, broken vows, the worthy say so.
This was no generation
Leaders lobby to stay lobbied
The dope flows, secrets uttered obscene.
Homo, bitch, nigg (with the A)
Before we war ourselves silly trumpets
Cow bells and awkward phrasing
Tweet twit bewitched for inching despair.
Path so disease the puss ooze out in Vogue.
Nights of prayers
People who love too much, shoved just enough
Shitting dawn and no care
So fuck your womb we know better.
Go, for goods hatched in distraction
Go, pummel, yes, pummel
For we drag our dicks like clubs, and ambition.
Go, fleets of madness, we all must be.
This is no generation.
Still wishing sit ins matter
Taking riot gear as holy shroud
You, for the well we must keep
You, for the passive rebelling
You, amongst fear, so silent
The violin without strings
You, must be lying
Off alone, left out.
Leftist pleading mercy from wolves
Hail of Marys
Who kept to saying their real names
We men, yelling, bend over, bend over over
Love is lust
So the nut is empty
As workers wallets and your belief
All eyes are pennies, their guts in the street
Taken as litter, and ash trays
You, muse of beer
Neglect as poignant as the news
We might be killing ourselves
No, frank ohara or Sinatra
No talking assholes
Wait – yes, talking assholes
No allen, no jack
No patti, or leroi
Just the forgetting the hettie amongst us now.
No power, black or white
That was them. Them dead. Boomers Florida now.
No deaths to martyr
No bobby, but there is a Jackson and we decided to mourn him.
Or mother, or daddi
Jimi angels all.
This is no generation
This is a forgetting, in place of pasts
Jostling for an us
* * * * * * * *
Ra Washington Is a writer living and working on Cleveland’s west side with his wife, historian Lyz Bly. He is the author of 24 books – most recently the novel, Run Along, The FIRE Says – and he operates the bookstore/zine cooperative, Guide To Kulchur, in the Historic Detroit Shoreway neighborhood. He also curates the electronic music label Cleveland Tapes. You can find him on twitter @clevelandtapes.
“Moloch, Moloch” (c) 2012 by RA Washington, used with permission. The poem originally appeared in his book Primer for the Vanguard Youth, published by Crisis Chronicles Press.
Primer for the Vanguard Youth – cover photo by Steven B Smith