Drum Logic

Drums get down like James Brown. They break chains, sing refrains of freedom. Drums are all about love. They’ll hit on you if you hit on them. Drums don’t take lip service from the apocalypse. Drums are planets with dense atmospheres of feeling. Each beat is its own Bruce Lee side-kicking us into cosmic bliss. Drums are raucous telegrams from the sonic world. They write on the breeze with tonality ink. Drums slip rhythms into locks of inhibitions and open our hips on the dance floor. Drums ain’t no sycophants; they’re sick for their own slick chants. Drums ain’t no Sisyphus shouldering boulders uphill. They’re rock ’n roll all the way, baby.

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The Truth About Trump

One of these days, Trump will admit to being Putin’s puppet. He’ll acknowledge that climate change is real. He’ll replace his painting of Andrew Jackson for one of the Jackson 5. He’ll hand over the pee tapes and his tax returns. Return all the money he’s ever embezzled. Stop jonesing for Alex Jones. Quit trafficking in insane Twitter rants. Cease lying. Ensure that children at the border aren’t dying. He’ll drain the venom from his sucker punch. Praise CNN instead of Fox. Allow his bloated ego to be the new border wall. Stand mighty for gay rights, get down on a knee with Kaepernick. Will apologize for being such a racist and sexist. He’ll…Naaaaaaah!!!

The Bummer About Bombs

Bombs are born from the womb of doom. Bombs offer ashes. Bombs go boom. They say, “No babies, no pets. No families, friends, or loved ones!” Bombs say, “Nothing but me, then absolutely nothing at all!” Bombs should be awarded the Pulitzer prize in genocide, the Academy Award in war. Bombs are far worse than photobombs. They’re in touch with their inner Hitler. They feast on the mushroom cloud for dinner. Bombs should take up meditation, go on extended vacations. Pick up a book, paintbrush, guitar, or gardening shovel. Bombs should offer us peace of mind, not pieces of oblivion.

When Facing Down the Sluggish Giants

Those who defy positive change are a fossil fuel of progress, bringing it to a choking halt. Revolution and innovation urge us onward, allowing us to witness bolder and brighter horizons. When our hands hold only hope and renewal, courage and tenacity are the ammunition required when battling monied fists and guns. Also a durable and well-tuned heart. Forward is the beat of that heroic drum.

If You Smell Smoke

Maybe it’s madness playing with matches again. Or maybe it’s the dead burning their coffins, protesting how the greedy few have squandered life’s riches; made existence such an existential shambles for the masses. If you’re looking for answers don’t ask America. There are few words left in its tattered alphabet of compassion. No readymade balm to soothe qualms. It’s difficult to say how these days will square with history. Too early to say whether we can ever regain the title of humankind. Here where the present is a darker shadow of the past, and the future is one too many long and winding highways from home.

By Will or Wall

Another day of Trumper tantrums. His narcissism has gone nuclear. His amygdala has kicked into overdrive. No superhero, super citizen, or super politician seems capable of deweaponizing his bully instincts. Citizens have been reduced to supporting players in his new reality show: By Will or Wall. Every episode, another nightmare of Trump’s Twitter fingers massaging the truth into a typo-ridden goo where stupidity and cruelty reign supreme. Now there ain’t no place to hide from his hate. No panic room big enough to shield us from the awful truth—none of this is making America ‘great again.’

The Algebra of Misguided Actions

Unknown variables offering elementary assumptions of zero-minded needs. Abstractions of mental obstructions yielding coefficients inefficient at creating a reunion of broken parts. Quadratic equations of kindness dismantled into negative values offering no real solutions. I am often stumped by the algebra of our world’s misguided actions.

What Mayakovsky Would Have Us Wear

A birdsong in britches. A daydream in hand-me-downs. A haiku in hiphuggers. A whisper in knickers. A song in a sarong. A sorry in a sari. A parade in a raincoat. A noose in a pullover. A hymn in a hijab. A grimace in denim. A padded cell in plus size. A tombstone in a tuxedo. A contradiction in a pencil skirt. Benevolence in leg warmers. Peace in a bomber jacket. Vesuvius in a pants suit. The moon in haute couture. A bell’s breath in its Sunday best. And yes, “a cloud in trousers.”

For Evelyn #2

Whatever joys, sorrows, and struggles come our way, may we welcome them. Each emotion and awareness can be a teacher. Each can guide us towards new wonders and healings. May we never build fortresses of unfeeling. May we never wall ourselves away from wounds that may one day lead to riches. Love is the reward for those who dare to dig deep enough to expose the gem of their hearts.

So Breathe the Breaths

So breathe the breaths of skeletons still hidden in our closets. So breathe the breaths of porch lights guiding the lost home. So breathe the breaths of those stuck in traffic. So breathe the breaths of orphaned atoms longing to bond together to become anything but bombs. So breathe the natural breaths of cause and effect. So breathe the sweet breaths of nightingales and night-blooming jasmine. So breathe the mournful breaths of melodies crooning on the dark side of a tune. So breathe the welcoming breaths of half-open doors leaving room for everyone to enter.