A poem: Bombs in the Basement, by Gary Lindorff

Recent poem by my father, featured on the political activist site Counterpunch.org:

Bombs in the Basement
by Gary Lindorff

Today my toast looks like Christ,

like planet earth,

like Venus

like me in a dinosaur-proof suit,

bristling with spikes

that I invented when I was afraid to fall asleep.

But I don’t have time for visions. Christ,

I don’t have time for anything!

Bombs in the basement. That’s for the NSA.

A toast to the NSA!

(Lift up your cups, your mugs, comrades!)

The NSA keeps us mad.

Mad as a Hatter.

Without madness I just start

thinking about whether I flossed last night.

I can’t tell you what I’m really thinking.

But it’s whispering.

(I tell spirit in the stone-people’s lodge, I

sweat out truths that are so far beyond

anything I can put to words.

Sometimes sweat speaks louder than words.)

I wish I trusted my instincts!

Damn this

buzzing in my head. Can’t

think clearly. Want a revolution.

You too?

(My toast wants a revolution!)

I’m a Vietnam peace-veteran. And

so much more. They took my childhood,

my youth, my old age.

(Next life I’m going to

get ‘em back.) They took my father’s soul for

Christ’s sake. . .He was a Marine. . .

But he got it back before he died.

I was there. He got it back!

Bombs, bombs, I mean Buddha

in the basement.

Good morning NSA.

It’s a metaphor, you idiots. You literalists.

It’s code for, you guys should get out more.

This whole piece of toast is looking like Snowden now

who looks like Christ, by the way,

who looks like you and me and Buddha

flossing under the Bodhi tree,

who looks like Snowden.

Dear Snowden,

It snowed yesterday.

And I still have gardens to put to bed. . .


A Poem : I don’t think I can stand, by Gary Lindorff

I don’t think I can stand
By Gary Lindorff

I don’t think I can stand another disappointment.
I’m weak,
Weakened by disappointment.
So I’m watching from the outside
To see if you can weed out the free-loaders,
The addicts, the bandstanders, the ones who abandon old dogs in the alley
Before I show up with my clean white beard
To tell you a few true imperfect stories,
To make my pitch for endurance,
To believe in you
To cast my eyes up to the tower tops
And down down to the basements of Mother Earth
Where the ants are gathering for the coming storm.
You know the apples in the great barrels are all rotten
But we’re fasting anyway.
The jailor is perplexed.
His job is to feed us
And he hasn’t noticed that the walls are dissolving.
Soon he will be free as well.
So please, please
Don’t disappoint us.
When you tell what happened, to your grandchildren
You will say, those white beards came
And the ants, from deep down in the Earth fed us
When we were sleeping,
Dropping little grains of sweetness between our lips.
Dreams came,
Towers fell,
Little children sang
and sang
and sang. . .

Originally posted on Dave Lindorff’s political activist website, This Can’t Be Happening.
Gary Lindorff, the author of this poem, can be reached at maleotter [at] gmail.com
Artwork by me, which was posted on this site in another post, so will not be duplicated here.

A Poem : Conscience, by Gary Lindorff

DSC_0315_this cant be happeningConscience
By Gary Lindorff

I am coming –
Made of stardust
And the dust that escapes from vacuum-cleaner bags.
I am blowing.
I am rushed and roaring
Like a waterfall
Coming straight at you,
Pushing ghosts out of my way. . .
I am spitting out the taste of middle-age,
Hacking out the nutrasweet of misspent youth.
A little manic,
A little frantic,
A little righteous. . .
I have been lied to,
Cheated and abused
But none of that has molded me.
I am coming for myself,
For you,
For my mother and father.
I am like a thing of light
Stepping out of a chainmail
Of dead cells
And scales the color of fog.
I am like a mega-fauna
Crashing out of the wilderness.
Blazing my own way,
Snapping branches as I come.
I am American
And I should be dead,
Extinct and broken. . .
Oh yes, forgotten too.
I have been drafted and flogged
Pissed on and denied,
Forced to commit atrocities. . .
My feet are bare and bleeding.
I walk gingerly
For the sacred ground is bruised
And bleeding too!
Trembling I am coming.
Awed by my own existence,
I tell you, I have been summoned!
I have no choice
But still I am glad.
I am coming fast!
I am coming strong and loud.
Just know this –
I am not turning around.
I am not going away.
Coming is my vision.
Announce me.
Give me work.
Make me welcome.

Originally posted on Dave Lindorff’s political activist website, This Can’t Be Happening.
Gary Lindorff, the author of this poem, can be reached at maleotter [at] gmail.com
Artwork by me.