There were days that even Judy had the Blues.
But there are days when all lost souls do...

Monday, March 08, 2010

Dog and Pony Dream

(Happy Birthday To Me)

We may start with some
Far-fetched heroic vision or shining sculpture,
A kingly sword stuck into a stone perhaps,
But the images are only sparkling ice that momentarily ennoble
Some facile dirty-faced kid’s frosted birthday cake—

It gleams and melts, it cuts both ways
For both the artist and his art—
First too sharp and then too cold,
First cutting you, then cutting me,
Whatever it happens that we don’t like
Will happen on this day.

Now traces and shards of steel and ice we’ve known so long
Find too many candles on the cake for such a kid,
I confess; they heat and melt both the pretty icing and the ice,
And something hasty, lightning-fast, shoots across our wiring
And phases out these networks of neurons and nerves
That used to let us feel this celebration,
But now explodes and leaves an awful mess.

And so we deftly watch ourselves—
As cold or bleak as Lazarus,
Coming from the grave or going there—
Get rubbed clean of cake and drink, then dusted off
By some sweet Genie from the past grown harsh and thin.
What’s that lady doing here at all, I ask—
I said it’s my birthday!

More, I wonder if such a lapsed old pony trick or doggie fix
As I imagine would even work these days?
It would be a wonder
If one of those old queens of dead certainty
Should return with her guns drawn to the scene of the crime,
Alive with angst and able to anger me still,
Wearing skirts of unwed circumstance
In shades of unfettered royal blue and rust.

It’s many myths and mists since they’ve been gone.
No one to speak of or none I can recall
Ever came round asking about those mysterious souls
Or telling the last of their tale, if there is one,
To this bent and ragged rhymist.

It’s as if they are dead
And have always been dead.
Maybe I suspected otherwise at times—
I did hear secondhand rumors once—
But I’ve kept that opinion to myself.
What’s the point of showing everyone
The proof that I’m crazy like they said
Or that I’m crazier than they are?


Current draft: 3/8/2010
Created on 12/22/2009 7:46 PM

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Judy Garland's Blues

Why was Judy Garland sad?
Did she have everything—but not love?
What drove Judy Garland mad,
Or do I give her too much credit?

Was she just privately unlucky, after all the public luck?
Did she have two armfuls of nothing in the worn valises
She dragged into another mansion of expenses, pills, and airs
Amid lost things never declared, forever beyond her reach?

Did she have everything—but not love?
Was she too often left behind as a child
Or was she poisoned in the vein
As by too many drinks or a rattlesnake...

Twisted by some familial demon spirit she became
That Voodoo spirit, the reel and spin, the deadly living blues,
Forever frightened—no matter her age or image or magic—
Of what to choose and what to lose, out of control to the end?

Did she, like you, like me, have everything—
But could not feel the love that others gave
Or stay as brave as needed every moment?


Current draft: 4/12/2010
3rd draft: 04/26/05
©2004 Ronald C. Southern br/>
[This is a separate and different title from the blog title.]

Colorful Judy

The Creature

Ron Southern,
Chigger, Texas, USA

Personal Labels:

Clean and easy-going. Dirty-minded, paranoic, catatonic, droll, drastic, dramatic, savage, uptight, dribbling, abstruse, and timid.

Not to even mention artful, artistic, abusive, misleading, abrasive, manipulative, dodgy, sneaky, and totally unforgiving!

How about poetic, pansified, petty, pornographic, always preening, and a little peculiar about what feels good!

The Poem With The Similar Title

©Ronald C. Southern

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