Whitney Jones Olson

Rookie (August 14,1982 / Indiana)

On Ginsberg's America,5th Part - Poem by Whitney Jones Olson

Oh, God-sick America, bless your heart,
You sincere sweet ragged old mistress,
Of paradoxes, duplicity, soaring birth rates,
And the need to legally tranquilize,
The unsanctioned desires, always looming,
In your hoarding ticky-tacky multitudes.

America, it is true
That even your men
Grow old
Take sick
Sit stagnant dead.

You would speak to me
Of the blasphemy,
Of the encroaching threat,
Of Catholicism?
You would condescend,
To save my
Eternal Soul, telling me
Of faith, devotion, truth,
Affliction, sacrifice, love,
Eternity, tragedy, loss?

I don’t remember you,
Among the destitute,
The devout of Desperation,
Bent in long-suffering pews,
When I was immobilized,
Seized by the macabre,
As, with the modest body,
Still disquietingly unbroken,
In her grateful lips,
She broke,
With the memory of him,
Pushing himself forward,
Tethered, to unforgiving steel,
His captor, his impoverished misfortune,
He finally supplicated, rutted,
Haunted by War,
Crippled by tuberculosis,
Victimized by his cure,
Caustic moonshine of memory,
Mutely, he invoked the body,
Sought of it his bread,
Stoically, he imbibed of the blood,
Made of it his wine,
And, thus satiated, receded,
Rising, into the apparition,
Of her tears.

Do not preach to me.

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, May 2, 2006

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