The Death of Loved Ones

Why does the death of loved ones

shatter us more completely
when we're young?
No one's ever thought
he'll live forever,
that he's perfect or he knows it all—
death, shame, and stupidity
are merely worn in different styles,
the most popular of which
is Wise Adult.

Misunderstood youth doesn't bother me
as much as does the narcissism
we lose
a little more of every day.

How dare a loved one die
when we're almost rich and famous?

If we absorb this outrage
into our heroic narrative

something of the dead
loved one lives on
a while in our insanity.

It's insane to live
according to a fantasy
of living. 

We're all insane, especially you,
fantasizing this is not a poem, fantasizing
it is,
fantasizing me,
who today cut his hair with Christmas lights.
I wish the dead could read,
the dead are my demographic,
the dead are not concerned
with prosody or truth. 

Perhaps we turn
so humble, perhaps we turn
to "faith" and reasonable careers

because our childhood fantasies
reveal themselves
to be not only foolish
and common 
but also fatal.

Then we pour poison-grain

into chopped hour-glasses

to dream control
over death of dreams,

speeding a fatality on
we didn't know existed,
but not so quickly we'd recall
the specific tear shape
that finally did us in.

Dictators, adored at first,
become despised, deposed,
and hungered for again.

It's not that we learn too much
to be as arrogant as we used to be.

It's that we gather the wrong knowledge

for strengthening the fantasy
that leads on to success.

We weaken into responsibility,
into paying debts.

We're polite to fools.

We waste our lives with fools.

We're ashamed
of the dishonest nature of our shame,
of how we wait
in lines chuckling with strangers
as if our fuzzy genitalia didn't rot
like a mouse
between the oven and the wall,
a dead and secret mouse
whose living and more careless friend
eats the cheese
we tentatively explored.

Eat my dick like a rat does cheese,
I believe Too Short says somewhere.
Or is that Eazy-E?

Though he's no longer in the charts,
Too Short sill lives

I saw him on TMZ the other day,
exiting a bar,
laughing and slapping
a delighted woman's ass,
which promptly vanished
into shadows
of his luxury SUV.

Too Short might be broke,

what he has with that woman in shadows
might be very sad,

but there was a time
when that would not have occurred to me.

I wasn't less wise then—
I grasped the essentials,
that I was born to die.

All I've learned
is how to more effectively

It's like I joined a cult
of humility,

memorizing arbitrary tales
in a reasonable mythology
of a meaningless survival.

The Tea Party appeals to me
for reasons they do not intend.
How one can dismiss
only part
of everything
lies beyond my powers of apprehension.
Jesus freakery is more interesting
than the Scientific Method
and almost certainly more sound.
When I seem wryly pessimistic

it's because that's the
nonlockupable way
to deny reality.
No one believes
you don't exist
if you tell them so
over awful wine. 

Only tyrants go far enough,
and they don't go far for long.

Tyrants seem evil
because we only consider
one or two at a time.
If we were a race of tyrants,
if we weren't contentedly tyrannized,

tyranny would look as kissable
as liberal democracy. 

Perhaps not—
there's no retirement
from softly compounding shame,

which is our life's work.
It inspires all our little
daily suicides.

Compounding shame,
compounding death—
we want it slow,

but we want it.
So when a loved one dies

and we're not young

it doesn't seem so bad.

Maybe we're relieved
there is one dream
likely to come true.
In Order to Commit Suicide
Jason Morphew

In Order to Commit Suicide

Jason Morphew

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