Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Mad Night's Mourning Spin

Mad Night's Mourning Spin
{like a mad irish poet}

Bright morning light a'finding me

underneath some stairs asleep
where that Mad Dog's done taken me
away again.
While them thoughtless whores
and their washed-up scores
of this mad night's mourning
spin by me
I can see their nickle plated price tags
and count their baby-cake grins.
And the glad thing is
that no one knows me,
hear, no one can call
my name.
But the sad thing is
this show is going
and my friends aren't here
to see the game.
Well its saxophone players & pastry bakers,
juggling fools & candy takers,
little niggers dancing a tap dance
in thier worn-out black shoes.
And the wild wings of the sidewalk preacher
with the wino from thier park bench bleecher
jeer the crown chunkin' small change
like it was made of precious gold...
like it was made of precious gold!

Monday, February 26, 2007

Suite Marigny

Suite Marigny

I can smell Jasmine
covering this morning
like a wide cotton bedsheet
of white class lace.
Still I tasts her breath of coffee
& cigarettes & mary jane
& Bloody Mary coughing
on the banquette
by the gate...

of this courtyard in the Marigny.
I lay me down my soul to sleep.
But the Heat won't let me.
So I lie
& dream...

of a dog park
well, a bald green lot,
with two trees
beside the coffee warehouse.
You can see the bags loading
in off the dock.
You can feel it on your skin
when they roast it up.
There the people gather
with their very best friends
& drink in the shade,
& talk in the wind
as this flat ByWater sunrise finds them
laying down
their entire lives.

There was a time
when all these houses built from barge wood
gave strong men right livelyhood
as they flooded in from the river.

You may know the sounds of unbroken belief
with a bucket of seed and the pigeons beside you
while you slide down the wet stones of the street
to a little cafe' named for the Goddess of Flowers,
where the 8 Ball lines up with Lucky 13,
& Snake Eyes & Diamonds & Demons In Chains.
Still the Angel waits for St. Ann to begin
with her mask made of sorrow,
& her laugh made of sin.

So when i die
please carry me down Royal Street
with a brass band and a 2nd line beat
to a courtyard in the Marigny
...to lay me down
my soul to sleep.

new orleans, spring 2005

Sunday, February 25, 2007



by Bruce Biles
New Orleans, Feb. 2007

I know what you're going to say, that if one listens too much to what "They" have to say then pretty soon one will begin to sound like...one of Them. We know there is a "Them" (at least I do) and we also know They will go There and do That. However, by its own cultural longevity, a "saying", in truth, can transcend what any individual or ruling junta may say about reality. Thus the saying: "You don't always know what you've got until it's gone." contains a certain efficacy of both Opinion and Fact that I would like to address: the reality of pain...at the begining of Mardi Gras, still eighteen months after "The Troubles" in the City That Care Forgot and the President left to die.
As in Joni Mitchel's song, "Don't it always seem to go, that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone. They Pave Paradise, Put Up A Parking Lot!", I entertain no Opinion as to whether anyone may or may not know what the have, in the first place, let alone what the have lost. While I don't remember ever falling in Paradise (perchance as I have always thought that one falls from Paradise) I can attest to Fact as to falling Down in a parking lot. It hurt. I suppose that in either place, some locations more than others and to differing degrees---all verifiable, the pain is real. We may or may not enjoy it. I don't want to get into any one's personal inclinations...different strokes for different folks and all that... BUT, when I fell face-down in a larking lot, it hurt. Try it and I doubt you will disagree with me on that one. Pain is Real, not opinion. That's a fact, Jack!
Now let us deal with what we stand to lose should we allow our Feckless Ruling Junta to get away with leaving New Orleans to die after Hurricane Katrina and the subsequent flooding and total breakdown of civil order. Day after day, as the water rose and became viscous with everything laid down over the decades, in a city nearly 200 years old, I waited for rescue. Not simply relief but rescue from absolute American mayhem. No police. No fire department. No sewage system. No emergency response. I listened to a single available radio station out of Baton Rouge nearly a hundred miles away and heard our Feckless Ruling Junta's Friends (who had been appointed as reward for political contributions rather than experience in the field) in charge of our country's Emergency Response, say that help was on the way, that they had everything under control. They said, "Trust us! Don't 'ya think We know how to manage a little disaster here? Don't you people know how to spell: Homeland Security?" Fact? Opinion? Ya' Think? To think or not to think means that we have already lost. That's a Fact, Jack. Do you have an opinion of what went down in this beautiful city where its inhabitants would recognize their own unique neighborhoods by the scents of jazmine vines climbing to the tops of the telephone poles. Do I care? {Will I turn into a neo-conservative bully by continuing to ask myself questions rather than addressing & answering any of yours factually?} No. I do not care for your opinion. I was there in Paradise. I fell down in the parking lot. It hurt as the Romance of it all broke my goddamned heart like watching The Crucifixion. Hence, whenever our Feckless Ruling Junta's friends---especially top $dollar$ ones---ask us to trust them I can feel the ill wind of pestilence coming for this country like the smell of shit in a dead man's eyes or the sound of flies buzzing out of his mouth. By its very nature, trusts in this or any Ruling Junta involves not Fact, Jack, but Armed Opinion. It requires Factjack!
This is what I call our Neck-less Ruling Junta's aggressive movement towards authoritarian doublethink management style. Factjack. Oh, can't you just bellyfeel it? Do you get the idea as well that by merely looking at the word it seems to obliterate meaning for miles around? Factjack involves the Theft of Fact by Armed Opinion. Fact: a verifiable statement of reality + Jack: to quickly, forcibly pry something loose with the intent to steal it. As with a Carjacking, one could be waiting at a traffic light, on their way to work during an Presidential election, when suddenly an armed criminal opinion steals their morning view with a campaign billboard which smears the Democratic presidential candidate and thrice-decorated Vietnam veteran---on his own war record---paidforbytherepublicanCommitteetoRE-EelectthePresident--- cowards who in fact hid themselves from military service. That's A Factjack!
It is a Fact that our Reckless Ruling Junta sent our army into another country, espousing a Babylonian labyrinth of daily shifting Opinions of Facts---no longer about why we invaded that country---but Opinions of Facts as to who in that country disagrees with our invasion of it and why they want to kill us. Not much argument about the Fact that they continue to kill us or the Fact that we invaded their country and continue to kill them---lots more of them.
It is a Fact that our Spineless Ruling Junta withheld even recognition of the devastation wrought by one of the largest man-made disasters to have ever hit this country for reasons and motivations of their own. It is a Fact that They left Me to Die in the City when They saw a Time to Kill It.
So our Restless Ruling Junta continues to ask us to trust them. They say they know what they were doing in Iraq, as they knew what they were doing in New Orleans. I say that is a Factjack! I say cell phone pictures from a torture prison are worth a thousand words. I say that to leave New Orleans like an open wound will lead to the fatal infection of our entire body politic.
is a fact, Jack!
Lassezes Le Bon Temp Roule'!!!