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Matt acted

In high school Matt acted as though
their ridicule and insults didn’t get
to him but they did—He wouldn’t go
back there and pretend they’d been his
friends—They’d stabbed him daily without
knowing that they did—He quells his
rage now—he pretends they never lived

Why not you?
You, upside down,
it’s your turn
Fair presences weaved
over vile acts
Frogs jump into
and over your grave

A single ever-evolving entity
within which improbable organic life
emerges from an inorganic mess to
develop as plant life, animal life, and
human self-awareness—that  relentless
churning burn, that dynamic serious
jest from which we all emerge

A restless, skillful leader always
looking for trouble—fearless,
unscrupulous, not content unless
he inflicts misery on others or
others inflict misery on him “They
said I was a tyrant but that’s on you
because you never won anything”

“I’m so excited, I’m so excited,” she said
The sweet, so sweet
The salty, so salty
The bitter, so bitter
That’s our heritage, history—
“I don’t often expose myself like
that, as though I’m fearless”

Under a scarlet sun—its relentless
heat, are the rats now eating rats?
What vicious rats!!!
Said the general regarding his career
“It didn’t amount to much good
I was a racketeer for the bankers
and Wall Street—a thug”

When they prescribe their deepest 
form of life, the pious don’t accept
the logic of an indifferent universe, and
instead prescribe forms of compassion, of
comfort, in the face of nature’s toughness,
evils, darkness, stark luck and intensity
“Dr. Hunter, isn’t it so that in your religion

I can, like Dr. Faustus, repent of some
foul acts and be forgiven and saved and then
do more foul acts and expect to be forgiven again
and again, ad infinitum? Some deal” “Young
man, no—If you truly repent then you won’t
do those terrible things, and you’ll only
be forgiven when you truly repent”

When playing punch ball before school
if you hit the hard pink rubber ball with
your fist just right, your fist won’t hurt
and in fact feels good, as you watch
the pink ball soar
Birth, copulation, death—
We don’t remember the first, we’re

delightfully present in the second and
we won’t experience the third—He taught
himself, this friendly salesman, to speak
English by watching TV and as he tried to
sell us some knickknack or other, he said in
heavily accented English “You must cherish
this chance, you must cherish this chance”

-May 30, 2020-