“Well, my nerves are exploding and my body’s tense”
God is his shield as the blues rain down like Biblical prophecy.
First time I heard this record was on a cassette as I lay on a couch on Maynard Ave. reading Philip K. Dick. As epiphanies go the songs washed over me like dirges as the Shroud of Turin made its presence known. Bob comes clean on these songs like he hasn’t before and on disc one with the sheen gone these songs become even more confessional and cantankerous. We’re witnessing the blue boy step from the wet, oily painting to shake hands with death and demand his comeuppance. I’ve never attempted to parse his words because what would be the bloody point when transgressions are revealed and the sun shines upon him like an unkempt prayer. This music is personal like a secret only revealed once you’ve knelt down and acknowledged that your creator is neither your best friend nor worst enemy.
Imagine the tragedy to befall us as another lifeblood-refrain tears us to shreds. I’ve always heard “Cold Irons Bound” as a road song. A song Lincoln would have played as he freed the slaves and dealt with his own oppressive demons. The glass is shattered as Bob steps closer to the edge and questions his impermanence. I believe the record is more life affirming than people realize as Dylan wrestles with the muse that has him in a chokehold. One’s legendary status only gets in the way when you’re as hungry as a wolf and as treacherous as a quisling. Nothing makes any sense as these fragments are rubbed into our wounds like fire and brimstone.
Saturday, January 28, 2023
I wrote this about the new Bob Dylan Bootleg Series Fragments - Time Out of Mind Sessions 1996-1997 The Bootleg Series Vol. 17.
“Well, my nerves are exploding and my body’s tense”
Sunday, August 21, 2022
Sunday, August 07, 2022
Saturday, July 16, 2022
It’s how I’ve always written.
I’m in and out the door in ten to fifteen minutes.
The imagery lies in wait like a big cat on the prowl.
Streams of consciousness freely flowing like jagged puzzle pieces down an opaque river.
Poetry is in my blood like chunky alphabet soup served at the shelter for the culturally ill-defined.
This is how I write as I hardly break a sweat churning out the pulp like a versifier high on noir and sodden bread.
Reasonable doubt goes out the window as a jury of my peers stare blankly back at me from gothic mirrors leaving nothing, but the macabre to the convulsed imagination.
I believe I fell in love because her soul was just as polluted as mine and when she did the tango it was for keeps.
This is how I blindside you by not once coming up for air until all the inflatable poets are deflated and another beat writer rehearses for his overdue retirement.
This game of to have and have not never impressed me so I left community college and refused to look back.
The stage like the gallows is the only place I’ve ever let it all hang out as an audience of Titanic faces fights over the very last lifeboat.
Look up at the moon and tell me how little it has changed since first writing about it thirty nine years ago.
Tuesday, July 12, 2022
His voice uncovers the great mystery. Darkness lifts as the stone is
pushed away and a new man walks free. Rob’s “A Voice from on High” is
the song the Israelites heard as they escaped Egypt because Rob carries a
great burden in his soul. All honest to God prophets must sacrifice
everything before a burning bush is revealed to them. Blood covers his
voice because it’s Blood carrying us through as we’re freed from bondage
and enter the Promise Land dressed in sackcloth and fresh tears.
Monday, July 04, 2022
No one’s paying attention
No one gives a shit
The cross the poet carries a cloak of invisibility in a hell-scape of attention seekers
Lying to oneself gets you five to ten on a long list of forget-me-nots who never learned smelling the flowers is crucial to one’s survival
Quickly lost interest in porn so I started paying attention to the plight of the worker ants and their day to day struggle to stay poor and angry
Our productivity mustn’t be the key to someone else’s happiness because our souls are ours alone to protect and serve
No one’s lifting a finger to change a damn thing
The Supreme Court continues to supremely fuck us as the Wild West comes back into vogue like ethnic cleansing
We must burst through unconsciousness and discover ourselves at the end of a long, dark tunnel where the light still favors a happy ending.
Another poet dead and buried
He shot pomp and circumstance in the head
He wasn’t full of shit and pathos like too many Cleveland poets
First time I saw him read I felt both unnerved and like I’d been hugged by the universe
His hunger never abated and his quest for knowledge was never satiated
He was the very first poet astronaut I’ve ever met. He introduced me to the cosmos when he laid down his words like a red carpet of blood and synapses
The news of his passing punched me in the gut and I swear I’ll never be the same again
One of the good ones who knew the jig was up and never judged the foxes too harshly for raiding the henhouse
He’s out of here
Another poet shot into space
He introduced each and every one of us to a kind heart and the beauty of an unabashed shooting star
I love and already terribly miss you Terry
Thursday, June 30, 2022
Ipps cry from the wilderness like a dog with no bone.
A prescient yelp from a Whitman soul that knows no boundaries or borderlines.
I was screaming while I wrote this and Emily nor Bo were either phased nor in the least little bit concerned for their safety.
Poetry isn’t for wimps no matter how you slice or dice it.
Recess was never much fun until I discovered Sue Leair and her skunks and number nine mythologies.
When staring into the void it’s best to have both eyes shut in case a vesper or pebble gets through your lowly defenses.
Emily sings louder than all the rest because her soul mustn’t be contained as the hellhounds on her trail stop off at a hotel in San Antonio where they hear tell of a journeyman laying down the real blues medicine.
I can’t fight this feeling because I’m a child of the eighties where big hair and Porky’s got the best of many of us.
My prom had a Bon Jovi theme because we were still wanted dead or alive as we wished for the horror of high school to be laid to rest.
This life preserver turns no one away because Emily believes that charity is not only a false Christian construct.
I wish I could get Lamont Thomas on drums as I screamed this poem to the high Heavens.
More inflatable consonants and vociferous vowels to lead us past the flames and into a paradise of pomegranates and purring Siamese cats.
Ipps inflate nothing because they understand how crucial it is to be counted in a forest of starving roadblocks and frozen impediments.
One more false prophet flaking out because their bourbon wasn’t top shelf as Emily stands tall by never turning her back on anyone.
Bo and Emily are in my heart because I’ve had enough of false equivalents.