"Like Icarus"
"And in this harsh world draw thy breath in pain..."
--Hamlet, at the end of Act V

Tonight I watched a deadman on t.v.
Spit out a clouded heart with music
Dredged from the soul of his bowels:
"Come as you are; no, I don't have a gun...memoreee-uh"
All too aware
Time was rushing like the smack in his veins;
Yet more convincing in that mumbly angst
Than all the posers of a numbed generation

The double-edged sword, the gun
Always swung back into your own face;
The spike with its temporary solution
Measured like fool's gold in half gram drops--
Preferred decerebrant
Of an overstimulated age,
Fastforwarded hypertextual half-lives
Even Nirvana downloaded;
Somehow that distilled essence rare
Lingers in the ear like feedback,
Makes blood run ice-clear:
"...eat your cancer/when you turn black..."

Friends of friends; I didn't know him...
Lived vicariously his debacles
With half a hundred million others
Heard that trademark tortured moan
In a thousand drunken bars
At least two or three continents;
Even my ma knew the name,
They'd shared Seattle a few years
A heavenly city where twin-peaks evil
Is always hanging out right next door...
Kurt & Co. made it a trendy place
& coffee vendors went nuts
Nirvanabes & junkies flocked there in droves

Annie's a little depressed, didn't
Swallow her lithium today...
Strangely worried about Daniel,
Himself quite shook from Kurt's death;
Kinda took it personal--
Neither of us dreamed
They'd find him dead later that day--
He seemed in OK spirits
Laughing, unburdening the night before--
Now just another damn star in the sky...
Shotgun, syringe or mere depression
Or this plague keeps killing my friends'
The final burns similar;
Cobain left perhaps the prettier corpse...

Yesterday I blasted In Utero
'Til the words stung:
"I'm married/Buried..." "Out of the sky--into the dirt"
We all gotta go there; Kurt drove
Considerably faster than most,
Aching so to be reborn,
Gunning for the womb...
Yet left the child he loved
Fatherless and fucked-up:
Yea, the sins of the fathers
Are doomed to be repeated,
'Til the karmic wheel dissolves

"All apologies"; "I hate myself and want to die"
Kurt knew the endgame loomed,
Rome was a cross-dress rehearsal
A pantomime for the press, yet
Nobody got the joke...
"...Found my friends / with my head"
"...been a few days since I found God"

Every artist worth the salt
Of the burial ceremony knows
As some coot said, poetry is the struggle
Of the self with the self,
& often nobody wins;
Only imagined angels, though
Poets wail for poets,
antistars, even ardent editors,
Especially those that soar,
Like Icarus,
Straight for the sun

[Michael Carter/poem] [Jim C. painting]
copyright 2007 Thin Ice Press
copyright 2007 Michael Carter
copyright 2007 Jim C., aka James Cornwell
Jim C.
Michael Carter