Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Poetry with a cup of tea and a biscuit...

This poem first appeared on uncharted.ca.

Enter the mysterious , nether regions of the A.F.L.-C.I.O.... peer , if you dare , through this murky portal at the still beating heart of the organized worker; the phantasmic dimension where debt ridden and free mingle and slither about from 9 to 5 , bound & strangled in the tangled knot of wagism; stepping lively to commerce's pacemaking drum rattle;...straining to survive amidst the competing cries of solidarity and hucksterism, pitching hither and froe , lurching spasmodically to Mammon's hellbound trumpet call and by fingerholds and sheer luck gripping the slippery face of dignity ..... holding on in the teeth of the gale force winds of surrender, propagated Hollywood style, in the hack- ridden back lots of labor's insane aristocracy.....where addled ex- clock punchers with thumbworn expense - account logs & hyperlinks to multiple pension plans string defective extension cords to the castaway hot air machines discarded on the cheap by generations of genuine American accumulators; the plutocrat bunko artists dressed to kill by Brooks Brothers , perched & preening like dry-cleaned vultures on the living soul of throbbing dreams ; pitchmen by trade , robots by avocation, the worn out flim flam men's deadly cornball routines re-cycled now by the pale betrayer's of Lucy Parson's ghost , arrayed by morning's light in stagnant formation , seated in their cubicles ; row on row of idea - shorn men , barbered smooth as eggs in the office building incubators of Sweeney's apprentice bagmen; dining on dues near Dupont Circle until dusk and by the winking light of the sly Potomac moon , filling the dumpsters with the untraceable residue of overheated shredding machines ; making mincemeat of the ancient bannered slogans they hunt like fugitives:" An Injury to One is An Injury to All " ....for one illustrious example .... churning out the clanking , clunking , cinder -bound journals of Trumka's memorized chanting on the adjacent page makers; destroying honest words and cloning fatuous confections with both hands tied behind their backs , smiling dummy like into their digital mirrors , cleverly arrayed to amplify the grinning reflections of the carefully glued smile masks ; plastic faces & shrunken pin-point pupils leering from the empty , hollow , underpinnings of that old reliable greed.....

- John A. Joslin ( Detroit, 2005)

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