One critic said that British punks sang anger, Americans, pain. But punk was more than emotion, more than the sense of humor the Ramones brought to the mix, more than the adrenaline rush of a live show, more than the aura of sex around everything.
(Rondeau with a Line by Anthony Scaramucci)
Many characters kill people
in the show I watch with my daughter.
What is this teaching her?
The men take their shirts off, often.
If you lack character, lean on money.
Homeless folks lack the hygiene of money.
Wendy O showed her nipples, grabbed her crotch,
licked a sledgehammer. Said, What’s obscene is money.
On the Anniversary of Kristallnacht, Donald Trump is Elected President
It starts with breaking glass,
a brick thrown,
Jewish storefront shattered.
The vile Other punished.
(All that has been worked for
If I didn’t know,
the German word sounds pretty,
tinkles, conjures flutes of champagne
raised in toast.
If we didn’t know.
More than a hand
not pressed obediently to a heart.
More even than my muscled ass
still seated when my teammates soared.
My purple-lipsticked pout
My messy (read “Black”) hair
honest with disappointment
A woman’s body is a pool.
Jump in. Splash around.
People who speak Spanish all have outside jobs, my daughter announces
as the Mow ‘n Blow crew descend from a truck to ravish our lawn. I read her a book about dark children dancing, playing drums with wrinkled elders, eating fried plantains. Bored, she grabs Dr. Seuss.
I’m not Latin Mommy.
I’m light pink like you.
If your family would call, I tell my husband or if you made rice and beans.
Maybe if we got somebody white to cut the grass.
Cameras adore him —
that chiseled face, all
angle and shadow,
bright with tears. He sobs
about waking from nightmares,
won’t look at the picture
of what used to be my head.
Dead, you’re the critics’ darling. When I was a teen, you were mine. Each morning I lifted The Velvet Underground and Nico from its sleeve, watched it spin, waited for Sunday Morning’s opening notes to warm me like a junk rush.
I want to celebrate Christmas,
my daughter announces. I want
blow-up things on the lawn.
Headaches, nausea, asthma, crying,
sleep disturbances, reluctance
to go to school—in forty-five states,
the children ready their pencils.
Let’s Solve This, the Exxon announcer
purrs, while bright, hopeful cities
configure themselves in the background.
Using your knowledge
of oil companies, what can you infer
about the speaker’s motives? How is Common Core
like drilling in the sea?