released: July 8, 1999, at the Peopleís
Center, West Bank, Minneapolis as part of Streets
of Minneapolis, headlined
by Larry Havluck, streetsinger-songsmithís Anarchy of the Heart
and featuring Scott Vetschís Hauling Ass: Cab Driving Poems.
program, with the addition of LeNor
Barry's song Third Precinct was recorded November 4, 2000 at Sursumcorda as a web TV show.
The audio cd of that show is for sale at Mayday Books in Minneapolis
previewed: TC Revue, Hot
List. July 8, 1999
reviewed: Pulse, July
They said on the news that people were
coming and going in the old womanís apartment.
The neighbors complained about a smell.
When she hadnít paid her rent she was
The old womanís brother came to pick up
The police checked inside the apartment
The landlord changed the lock.
The neighbors complained about a stench.
They said on the news that after two weeks
they found her body in the closet
stuffed into a garbage bag rolled up in
The news gathers us
into its electronic web:
generating traffic reports for the unemployed,
school closings for the childless;
with its epidemic of fear
outlined with swift, fervid strokes:
the scream in the night,
the footsteps running down your hall
and those hungry eyes that gleam
just outside the circle of light:
the eyes of another, not the brother.
The news bombards our brains with images
of people blown up, out of all proportion,
into outsized social problems:
the old drunk reeling against the lamppost,
violent death and the survivors:
roadside figures, torn, limp
and huddled like birds in the rain
carting suitcases filled
with brittle yellowed memories.
These are the images,
the rags and masks we wear
on our evening rambles through the twilight
past the homes where we donít belong,
past the glowing glass display
of the silent family framed within
awash in the flickering stream
And so we reflect upon and reflect back
but there in the mirror, plain and flat,
we each see the image of death uncoil
as time loops degraded copies from copies
of the copy of some forgotten face:
a rumor garbled as it's passed along.
nd everyone's death is a lonely thing
even when our fondest killers,
our family and friends surround.
They will not stand there at your side
to gaze into an open mirror
upon an empty closet in a vacant room
and to turn with a silent scream.
So now you unlock the final lock
and pluck the petals
from your flowers of pain;
to scatter before a hubbub
of the blank and numb
who shamble down your hallways,
offering you oblivion.