Herbert Nehrlich

Rookie (04 October 1943 / Germany)

Night Soil - Poem by Herbert Nehrlich

When I am lonely
for human company
I pull myself up by the bootstraps,
- sometimes the suspenders -
and start to prowl. And, spotting one,
or two or more, depending on
how many, just like me,
need analgesic re-assurance.
It's drugs or flesh then, is it.
But flesh must not be foreign.
A look, a wink, a salivating gesture,
quite akin to tardive dyskinesia.
Oh, would that I could see the world
for what it is!
And send my left brain out the back
to count the money.
While basic instincts
start their feast without delay.

Some great philosophers have stated
that nothing is accomplished by delay.
An opportunity that's missed
becomes ill-fated,
why would you climb the hills
for gold that's on the streets.
So, let the flashers lead you
to their inner rooms,
you'll find them empty but of bare essentials,
there's money, yes but nothing else of value.
Say yes to homebrand soap
and bristle scrubber.

'It's money NOW, my man,
you pay before you come,
and time is money so
start looking over here.
I'm only making sure
he's squeaky clean.
So, let's stick him in
with rubber on his head.
And like the lady in the pay phone
says while waiting:
An extra fee is due
for any extra minutes,
though this is business,
not some High School dating.
So - signal when there's
something liquid in it.
If you need extras I have things available.
I don't do violence and cannot guarantee
to be as free of HIV as you would like.
This ain't the movies, now I've got to pee.

I see you did your duty, fellow
in the 'nick of time'.
That's what I call my box
that boxed you in.
Discard it there,
right next to the syringe.
'Twas good to see you,
always liked BIG men. '

What I've described is part of life.
Although I cannot, for the hell of me
see any man to choose a seat that,
in the down position
has been pissed and shat on.
They say it's old and honoured, a profession
that's stood the cruel and perpetual tests of time.
As long as men are willing to partake of fermentation
and soothing slime, with green and yellow flecks,
there will be ladies of the night who will supply.

So I decline in past, in present and in future.
If I have needs they won't be drained from me
by what a wise man once described as scum:
Scum of the earth, he said and yes this scum is human.

But still, I'm prowling now and
wandering through the night.
Remembering nothing of the past
except its future,
and wondering if there'll be a time
that I say Heck and Yes to compromise.

Perhaps a tiny island
in a giant ocean,
with me all by
my lonesome.
Long-term stranded.
It might take years
to finally yield to
temptation on
this island
to myself.


Comments about Night Soil by Herbert Nehrlich

  • (12/9/2004 3:01:00 AM)


    Allan, Confidentially, some of mine are long (not as long as the lingua longa you desribed inthe technicolour department) because I can't find my ending and keep going until it rears up.
    Thanks for the kind comments.
    H
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  • (12/9/2004 2:47:00 AM)


    Herbert you love a long poem, but your good at the long poem, so keep doing long poem's, woman of the night a good subject, i couldn't right about that subject
    you did and it was excellant, when i saw the title i thought you were going to do a bit of night gardening, but you explained yourself

    regard's allan
    (Report) Reply

  • (12/9/2004 2:09:00 AM)


    Another excellent example of free verse at its best (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: money, future, school, lonely, ocean, sometimes, time, night, green, remember



Poem Submitted: Thursday, December 9, 2004



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