Monday, April 22, 2013

Pleasant Dreams

I hail from
the mean streets of NYC
where many of my closest friends
are now RIP
their lives DOA
mostly just because
of where
they happened
to have been born
(the wrong side of the tracks)
more often than not
their funerals had
to be paid
by passing around
a communal
collection plate

We were just kids
back in the early fifties
growing up under the
nuclear shadow of
(which is government
gobbledegook for the
USA's insane
cold war policy of
Mutually Assured Destruction)
vis a vis the USSR
Amerika's favorite preferred enemy
(at that time)
an enemy
who was supposedly
always aching for
a nuclear show down
with the so-called
decadent nations
of the so-called
Free World

If you did not happen to have
a Fallout Shelter handy
in your back yard
(assuming that you also
happened to have one -
a back yard that is)
if a nuclear war
were ever to break out
most of us knew
that we would all
soon be toast
if ever
a mushroom shaped cloud
should suddenly
appear on the horizon
despite our vigorous
duck and cover
school sponsored drills
that would have us all
dive under our
school desks with
our hands protecting
the back of our heads
(all the better for
kissing our asses good-bye)

Ever since
Hiroshima and Nagasaki
whole generations
have grown up and
matured under the
ever present threat
of the nuclear
mushroom cloud

This knowledge
has shaped us and
warped us and
fashioned us into
the nihilistic
phantoms that
we've become

One would think
that a rational race
of human beings
would have made
getting rid of such
horrible weapons of
mass destruction
our generation's
highest calling
our highest priority

On the contrary
now every rogue nation
on planet earth
wants to own
a nuclear arsenal
of it's own
a chicken in every pot
a nuke in every garage

We are all of us
falling asleep
every night
under the shadow
of the nuclear
hangman's noose
yet on that scaffold
swings the future existence
of all human kind

pleasant dreams

Philadelphia Pa., 2013