OccuPoet Misty: "The Huff and Puff of My Frustration"
Prog Spring of 2012 continues. Today we meet OccuPoet Misty Rowan of Minneapolis, who will grace us with one of her poems. Misty came to my attention via this THREAD in DUmmieland, "Our Amazing Occupy Poet!" I watched the video, and yes, I was amazed . . . at what passes for poetry with the OWSies and the DUmmies.
And seeing Misty of Minneapolis, I was reminded of Ted of New York. You know, Trust Fund Ted? Ted Hall, Tedward, Edward Twitchell Hall III, Flea-bagger Ted, Our Favorite OWSie. Remember when we introduced you to Ted "Help us now!" Hall last fall?
You see, Ted is a poet, too. Now if only we could get Ted and Misty together! Shaggy would have his Velma! Ted Hall and Misty Rowan: It would be Rowan and Moron's Laugh-In!
But this is Misty's day. Misty has her own BLOG, where she goes by the blog-handle, "MissTeaTree." Here's a little about her: "I live in Mpls, I listen to Ani DiFranco and I voted for Cynthia McKinney in the last presidential election. I am a member of the anti-war committee (.org) and in my time that's less than free I bag groceries at my local foods co-op. I consider poetry to be a performance-based, storytelling medium, so most of my stuff is spoken word. To me, art and activism are the same thing." (She bags groceries at her local foods co-op? So she's a Brie-bagger?)
So let us now be amazed and amused at the art and activism of OccuPoet Misty Rowan, in Bolshevik Red, while the commentary of your humble guest correspondent, the wag tailoring the doggerel, Charles Henrickson, inviting you now to click the link to the VIDEO and . . . wait for it . . . play Misty for me . . . is in the [brackets]:
The Huff and Puff of My Frustration
[The Stuff I Puff for Recreation]
(Laughs) It's not fair. If I were to punch you, as hard as I could, I would sprain my own wrist. You would maybe notice, as I reduced myself to tears. So instead I use my words. And I'll tell you one thing: This mouth? Never got me in a fight it didn't right-and-the-f*** get me back out of. You see, I said I use my words instead. And it's been working (so far).
[(Laughs) It's not fair. If I were to do poems for you, as bad as mine are, you would slit your own wrist. You would maybe notice, as you tried to cover your ears, that I don't use meter or lines or rational thought. So instead, I just talk real fast. And I'll tell you one thing: This mouth? It's a poety potty mouth. I throw in a "f***" or a "sh*t" here and there to express my free-floating angst. Then I add something hopeful-sounding at the end. And it's been working (so long as I'm talking to the far left).]
But, they're bailing out the banks again, those leeches with their fees. So the question then becomes: How much is your money worth? Depends. How much have ya got? Not a lot? Oh, that's okay, baby girl! You too could still be president. Just get in line, and we'll call you. And in the meantime, try to find a job worth a damn to do, because the rent is due, and you're not getting any younger, and these cards aren't exactly stacked in your favor. I said, get a clue, and pay attention, because the undercurrent is ever changing in its direction.
[But, I'm flailing at the banks again, those rich guys with toupees. 'Cause the question I want to avoid is: How much is our money worth? Depends. How much are we in debt? Quite a lot? Oh, that's okay, liberal! You should still vote for our president. Just get in line, and we'll fool you. And in the meantime, try to keep up with this poem, because I'm not half through, and it's not getting any less longer, and these words aren't exactly arranged in coherent order. I don't have a clue, so pay attention, because my underwear is starting to cause me irritation.]
And you wanna stay ahead of that game. You want that spot on top of the food chain, don't ya? Everybody's so busy looking out for #1, and then they wonder why they feel so all alone. So many skin and bones, while the top 1% clench their law enforcement fist so tight that you have the right to work until you die in this country, and that's about it. Now pay your bills and buy some sh*t. And don't forget to check your credit score.
[And you wanna have someone to blame. You got hate to fill up a freight train, don't ya? Everybody's so busy lashing out at the 1%, and then we ought to whine about our student loan. So many can't afford smartphones, while the top 1% won't raise a finger to assist our plight, and you have no right to make me work to buy things in this country, so let's throw a fit. Now pay my bills while I smoke some sh*t. And don't leave yet, because there's even more.]
And it gets harder to ignore when they're coming right for ya. But these folks, they just don't care anymore. You can change the channel if it bores ya. Me, I threw out my TV. People gotta tell me when I'm on it. People gotta explain the whole commercial, 'cause I never catch the reference. Man, I got better things to see. And I understand that time is precious. Mine is spent in reverence of this occupation, because I am in love with it, I am in love with it. I just. . . .
[So don't go running out the door when I'm going on forever. But some folks, they just can't take anymore. You can slit your other wrist if I bore ya. Some, they throw up hearing me. People often tell me that they vomit. People gotta exclaim and beg for mercy, 'cause I never catch a second breath. Man, I got better things to do than breathe. And I like to think that time is meaningless. Mine is spent irrelevant of close calculation, because I am in love with the sound of my voice, I am in love with it. I just. . . .]
(Deep breath) I need to learn how to slow down and just appreciate this moment. This one, 'cause it's all there is. And then I'm off again, forgetting. And I'm looking up again, and I'm searching for the lines that I had memorized, so that I--so that, well, so that I could think about something else.
[(No breath) I refuse to learn how to slow down and just approximate a regular poet. It's fun, 'cause I'm such a whiz. And then I'm off again, forever. And I'm looking at folks getting up again, and I'm searching for the ones that I can mesmerize, so that I--so that, well, so that I could speak about something else.]
Sometimes I feel helpless. Like I have a needle but no thread, so it's no good. I can only manage the damage. Sometimes I'm the subject of this charade, and some days I'm just its contents, that is displayed as a series of statistics--and yes, I am sometimes Y. So what of it? And what difference does it make when you die?
[Sometimes I feel clueless. Like I have a noodle but no bread, so it's no food. I can only mangle the language. Sometimes I'm a poet who sounds clichéd, and some days I'm just a moonbat, that is displayed as one serious yet simplistic--and yes, I am out of time. So what of it? And what difference does it make where I rhyme?]
Well, I want a government that practices something like the "take a penny, leave a penny" system. And there will come a day, but either way I'm for that rain-or-shine type of activism: the committed, who don't shed their tears but collect them, weaving them into meaningful tales. We tell each other stories of bravery and compassion to keep ourselves warm, to keep our hearts burning.
[Well, I want a government that practices something like the "take the booty from the snooty" system. From there will come our pay, but either way I'm for that soak-the-rich type of socialism: the dim-witted, who don't pay their taxes but collect them, receiving them into buckets and pails. We tell each other stories of slavery and oppression to keep ourselves mad, to keep our hate burning.]
And I'll tell you another thing: It's you, me, and everybody. So don't go making enemies, 'cause you can't win. Instead, it's time to start talking to these strangers, our neighbors. It's time to start caring for each other again. Call it community, call it an occupation, call it revolution if you wanna. Just get on it! Ten years ago woulda been a good place to start. Now will do. Or, at least I think we can all agree that now is the very best we can do.
[And I'll tell you another thing, and another, and another. So don't go making for the exit, 'cause I'm not done. Instead, it's time to start talking even longer, for hours. It's time to start wearing out my welcome again. Call it prolixity, call it a bloviation, call it regurgitation if you wanna. Just don't vomit! Ten years ago mighta been the time I began to start. I'm not through. Or, at least I think we can all agree that June is the very earliest I can do.]
So come with me and take heart. I got some New Year's resolutions and a good idea where to start. I got some friends on the inside, the outside, the flipside, and the best part is that you decide your place in this world, okay? You decide. So let's start. Because to build a better world, all you really gotta do . . . is your part.
[So come with me and smoke pot. I got some stashed inside my backpack and a good idea it's a lot. I got some friends from the insane, the profane, the birdbrain, and the upshot is that we complain about our place in this world, okay? Sweat and strain? No, let's not. Because to build a better world, all you really gotta do . . . is jack squat.]