Home / Poem / James Brown Gives Me a Poetry Solo and I Try Not to Fuck It Up

James Brown Gives Me a Poetry Solo and I Try Not to Fuck It Up


Playing russian roulette with a turkey baster
full of ‘I can’t believe it’s not butter’
with 5 stuffed animals in the basement
of my childhood home, and soon
none of us can believe what we’re NOT covered in


Like a salamander on a waterslide
I wanna coat my skin with astroglide
and watch the world smear around me
as I’m carried to my wet destiny
of freefall and misbehavior.
And won’t you love the slick lanes
I leave in your hallways and underwear,
don’t be afraid of the thunder
that’s just the youthful exuberance
leaving my body


And can I scream
about double indemnity clauses and the state of modern packaging materials
And can I scream
about the growing number of invalid ways to live
And can I scream
about the corporate graveyards where the endless mountains of dead businessman are shrouded in the most beautiful fog
And can I scream
for the hungry and alone and the ones without a home
And can I scream
for whatever it is inside of me that needs a scream to be set free
And can I scream
And can I scream


Baby, if I was a newspaperman I’d be inclined
to write a headline cover story about that time
you doubted me and I exceeded expectations,
but then I’d probably get fired from the newspaper
and be unable to pay child support
once you divorce me
(after we’re married of course)
because of my lingering drinking problem
which I’d always promise to kick
but eventually succomb to
like I did to you
things were nice once weren’t they?


Touching the tall thin pines and smelling
their air-freshener smell and getting
cant-touch-other-people sticky in the sap
let’s lie down on the ground
where there can never, no never, be leaves

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