Maybe in a dream
Do we forgive our Fathers for leaving us too often or forever
when we were little?
Maybe for scaring us with unexpected rage
or making us nervous
because there never seemed to be any rage there at all.
Do we forgive our Fathers for marrying or not marrying our Mothers?
For divorcing or not divorcing our Mothers?
And shall we forgive them for their excesses of warmth or coldness?
Shall we forgive them for pushing or leaning
for shutting doors
for speaking through walls
or never speaking
or never being silent?
Do we forgive our Fathers in our age or in theirs
or their deaths
saying it to them or not saying it?
If we forgive our Fathers what is left?
“A Boy Named Sue”
My daddy left home when I was three
And he didn’t leave much to ma and me
Just this old guitar and an empty bottle of booze.
Now, I don’t blame him cause he run and hid
But the meanest thing that he ever did
Was before he left, he went and named me “Sue.”
Well, he must o’ thought that is quite a joke
And it got a lot of laughs from a’ lots of folk,
It seems I had to fight my whole life through.
Some gal would giggle and I’d get red
And some guy’d laugh and I’d bust his head,
I tell ya, life ain’t easy for a boy named “Sue.”
Well, I grew up quick and I grew up mean,
My fists got hard and my wits got keen,
I’d roam from town to town to hide my shame.
But I made a vow to the moon and stars
That I’d search the honky-tonks and bars
And kill that man who gave me that awful name.
Well, it was Gatlinburg in mid-July
And I just hit town and my throat was dry,
I thought I’d stop and have myself a brew.
At an old saloon on a street of mud,
There at a table, dealing stud,
Sat the dirty, mangy dog that named me “Sue.”
Well, I knew that snake was my own sweet dad
From a worn-out picture that my mother’d had,
And I knew that scar on his cheek and his evil eye.
He was big and bent and gray and old,
And I looked at him and my blood ran cold
And I said: “My name is ‘Sue!’ How do you do!
Now you’re gonna die!!”
Well, I hit him hard right between the eyes
And he went down, but to my surprise,
He come up with a knife and cut off a piece of my ear.
But I busted a chair right across his teeth
And we crashed through the wall and into the street
Kicking and a’ gouging in the mud and the blood and the beer.
I tell ya, I’ve fought tougher men
But I really can’t remember when,
He kicked like a mule and he bit like a crocodile.
I heard him laugh and then I heard him cuss,
He went for his gun and I pulled mine first,
He stood there lookin’ at me and I saw him smile.
And he said: “Son, this world is rough
And if a man’s gonna make it, he’s gotta be tough
And I knew I wouldn’t be there to help ya along.
So I give ya that name and I said goodbye
I knew you’d have to get tough or die
And it’s the name that helped to make you strong.”
He said: “Now you just fought one hell of a fight
And I know you hate me, and you got the right
To kill me now, and I wouldn’t blame you if you do.
But ya ought to thank me, before I die,
For the gravel in ya guts and the spit in ya eye
Cause I’m the son-of-a-bitch that named you “Sue.’”
I got all choked up and I threw down my gun
And I called him my pa, and he called me his son,
And I came away with a different point of view.
And I think about him, now and then,
Every time I try and every time I win,
And if I ever have a son, I think I’m gonna name him
Bill or George! Anything damn thing but Sue! I still hate that name!
— Shel Silverstein and Johnny Cash
Norway is one of the most secular places in a largely secular Europe. Only 1 percent of its 5 million people attend church. When a Norwegian looks into the night sky, a black, meaningless abyss that goes on forever looks back at him, nihilistically to be sure.
Waning Beneath The Night Sky Glare
There’s stars out but no moon
the sky seems empty or lonely like
a clown funeral attended only by mimes
or cowboys and indians getting along
It sparkles but is blank like the eyes of a politician
when promising a lie during a debate discussion
that rattles and hums in the ovoid of understanding
in the lacking of angular momentum. Or like
false positive truth serum soda sliding
down your throat, the cold jizz of a deadened demented lover
It’s a curved vault of black high above me
freezing and weighing down
inaccessible and far
close oppressive as every stupid rule (and
every smart one too)
following me with cackling implications of Nothing
- Michael Kindt, who is not Norwegian.
The sudden surge in the Bible’s popularity has Lutheran officials scratching their heads—Lutheranism is the official take on Jesus in Norway. The Good Book is even outselling ‘Fifty Shades of Gray’, a bad book.
For fun, here’s a quote from ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’:
His tongue swirled the edges of her lust cave rapidly, like a slimy, jittery worm on its second espresso. Involuntarily, she squealed. She was a newly born piglet, glistening with the damp afterbirth of love.
“This is wrong,” she cooed breathlessly. “We shouldn’t be doing this.”
“Shut up,” he said petulantly and slapped her right tit, leaving a pink handprint. She watched as her nipple became erect from the sting, rising above the pastoral landscape of her areola. It reminded her of Isengard.
A six-hour play based on the Bible recently ended a three-month run in Oslo, and people apparently went to it in droves. Imagine sitting though a six-hour play!
Some scholars aren’t surprised by the success of the Bible or plays based on it, explaining that faith is a deeply personal matter in this nation of taciturn Scandinavians who tend to withdraw to remote forests, mountains, and fjords to spend their handsomely paid vacation time.
“Church attendance is a poor measure of the Norwegian state of faith,” said Thorgeir Kolshus, a post-doctoral fellow at the university of Oslo.
But Bible sales and play attendance is a good measure? Hm.
Six-hours, though. Hopefully Odin blessed them with plenty of bathroom breaks.
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Let that which stood in front go behind,
Let that which was behind advance to the front,
Let bigots, fools, unclean persons, offer new propositions,
Let the old propositions be postponed,
Let a man seek pleasure everywhere except in himself,
Let a woman seek happiness everywhere except in herself.
- Walt Whitman
he bullshitted, ain’t no doubt about it.
It was just the way he told things,
made you never want to doubt him.
He kept you going when the road got tough,
and brought you through the lean times
by making it up.
is a cold,
If you can
find a person
There is no
and it is
to be alone
"The only two things in life that make it worth livin’
is guitars tuned good and firm feelin’ women.
I don’t need my name in the marquee lights.
I got my song and I got you with me tonight.
Maybe it’s time we got back to the basics of love…."
— Waylon Jennings
Now that I’m all old, I know many things. I know for a fact “Losing My Religion” by REM and “Heart-Shaped Box” by Nirvana are both the same song. I know that both are about being trapped in and by the flesh…heart-shaped box? Come on. A box is a material container…the heart? Well…it’s trapped in it.
I know that you kids are far too literalist for your own good. You are probably looking at a particular line in one of or each of the songs to PROVE me wrong. But you are silly and just kids. You would look at a single cell of a person to know them entirely.
Music, poetry, literature doesn’t work like that. Ever. No sentence can be singled out, unless you are a vandal and a fuckhead.
No one sees a cloud by the particles of water vapor that make it up. Unless they’re a complete dick.
This is why your search for truth will fail. This is why atheists have no imagination or honor. This is why song and poetry and anger and love will finally blessedly die.
Someday, you will all be fucking your microscopes in the ass and I will laugh at you because you refuse to be fools.
Nobody screws anymore
Back in the 70s,though
everybody was screwing
It was like the whole decade
had a thing
Ball is another one
People used to ball
“Me and Marie
balled in my El Camino
down by the lake while
Blue Oyster Cult’s
played softly on
the transistor radio”
I’m not actually sure
if balling was something
they did in the 70s,though
what with everybody
is what they did
in the 60s
Thinking about peace
with their bell bottoms
Now that I think about it
I don’t much care for balling
as a euphemism
It’s too athletic
I picture gyms
and locker rooms
and jock straps
That may be your thing
but it isn’t mine
Balling sounds like P.E. to me
Mom:”What’d you guys do in P.E. today?”
Disparate, chaotic, ranging in age
from 16/17 (runaways) to
They are welcome here,
in my fairly small house.
I will cook for them
And drink beer
because I always
like a subconscious
type of thing
I made pie
Apple for America
and punkin because
you haf to.
when it’s all done
play me their guitar
and recite me their poetry
and I will know
is how it’s spose
what else you got?