Thursday, November 15, 2012

"young american men with guitars"

"young american men with guitars"
written while listening to the national by jake kilroy.

every young man refers to the moon
as a desolate spotlight that hangs over the west,
and each young man thinks he's the first.
so they drive themselves mad with fury
and furious with madness,
as they work day in and day out,
just to return to europe again
and do it right for the first time:
pints, cafes, beds, too much coffee.

young american men,
still lost in their own country,
their own words, their own minds,
want to set out with backpacks
to find truth and bring it home
like scientists who can't stop buying jeans.

were their lovers supposed to wait by the sea?
what was home to be, if not a shelter?
but it's the black and white photos that got them.
it was the folk dress, the poetry, the art house flicks,
that practically killed them in a storm
because they were too busy saving
their old books and new technology.

but at least they could play music.
they, as glorious as bar patron saints,
could cut their fingers on guitar strings
and paint hearts on bathroom mirrors
so their barely dressed women
would think it was lipstick
that just happened to taste
like gorgeous blood.

vinyl hearts sewed with the world on a string,
buttoned over a denim jacket,
stitched up with sutures
when it should have been suitors.
what grace can still save a man
so hellbent on seeing the world
just to let it destroy him completely?

darling, beautiful anarchists,
play every instrument,
from drums to molotov cocktails,
because there's no anthem in america
that doesn't make every romantic
want to shed their bones.

so let us grow new ones like branches
that reach for the sky
and shake like waves,
all while we hear one
good voice whip our backs
so we can come back stronger
and crazier and more in love
with throwing words at each other
that sparkle and glisten
and truly, finally,
make us forget

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