The First Line is the Deepest -- KIM ADDONIZIO I have been one acquainted with the spatula, the slotted, scuffed, Teflon-coated spatula that lifts a solitary hamburger from pan to plate, acquainted with the vibrator known as the Pocket Rocket and the dildo that goes by Tex, and I have gone out, a drunken bitch, in order to ruin what love I was given, and also I have measured out my life in little pills—Zoloft, Restoril, Celexa, Xanax. I have. For I am a poet. And it is my job, my duty to know wherein lies the beauty of this degraded body, or maybe it's the degradation in the beautiful body, the ugly me groping back to my desk to piss on perfection, to lay my kiss of mortal confusion upon the mouth of infinite wisdom. My kiss says razors and pain, my kiss says America is charged with the madness of God. Sundays, too, the soldiers get up early, and put on their fatigues in the blue- black day. Black milk. Black gold. Texas tea. Into the valley of Halliburton rides the infantry— Why does one month have to be the cruelest, can't they all be equally cruel? I have seen the best gamers of your generation, joysticking their M1 tanks through the sewage-filled streets. Whose world this is I think I know. https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrymagazine/poems/51987/the-first-line-is-the-deepest
The First Line is the Most Depressed I wandered lonely as a cloud, mouthing all the platitudes, not ever saying aloud the angry half thoughts collecting in my blood. Thus we sat together at one summer’s end, good friends (at least on paper), and I said "Here I am, an old man in a dry month," and you reared up on your hind legs, yelling, "Stop all the clocks," and then, "cut off the phone!" I was shocked, I tell you, and left, and then went down to the ship, thought I'd blow this town, light out for the territories, shit happens and then you die, & etc. Ah, rose, harsh rose, sorrow is my own yard in spring, all marshy and full of weeds. Better to depart. So call the roller of big cigars, that mustachioed old baller with the John Deere cap who shouts "The land was ours before we were the land's!" And the band played on. Oh, yes, my Life had stood -- a Loaded Gun -- long before any of this madness could fuck me into submission. And I celebrated myself, and sang to myself, crooning "I've been away from you a long time," and "I can't sleep at night," all the blues fit to print. But now the thrill is gone, and memory, too. That's what happens to a dream deferred -- it goes down at sea in a leaky boat and you're fucking lucky if you drown.
Suggested soundtrack: John Lee Hooker.