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MICHAEL JAY PRICE
Poems


TRADITION TRADE TRAGEDY
       for Joe Fonda

Everywhere they buy soldiers
They buy soldiers
They bury soldiers
They bury some soldiers

And some not
Some soldiers and
Some not soldiers home
Wait some home witness

Some cry for some
Some die and some
Soldiers sold bury other
Soldiers sold and others

Everywhere everywhere
Everywhere everywhere

*************************************

WHAT IS
    for J. Krishnamurti

1

among mango trees and
guava groves a man goes

a gun in one hand
theories of god in the other

2

that night utter silence
no beginning hence no end

alone on the lawn
all memories had flown

only what is
there was

till thoughts of
bougainvillea gained

*************************************

ALL OF ABOVE
       for Bela Bartók and Joe Maneri

nemesis sister insinuated downtown tom tom mega- mega- a negative
insisted dog-tired dogma dogged a rake racking his fake fez’s so
    so content but

contented jackal rube syndrome besotted surname Smith or Jones
    joked sorrowfully
local yokel like the vocal folk code unlocked folly from fellowship’s tome

a mind a scholar battled estimated incomplete a male fantasy a
    villager awaited
tom tom tomb tomb abode eroding an orphan a toad to me he
    proffered gold

both here and now and there and then the tree house palace open
    to deviltries
boredom for an angel marred by far gone bar talk intrusions pals
    gals and lace

a belle swelled marrying perfection to no purpose other than pure
    fiction’s sake
swan turkey cat owl pregnant a capella outpourings snuffed out at
    whatever price

this wanderer a prisoner of all of above loved but little his muse’s
    dazed offerings a lamb
in a jam idealized he listens less and watches less and wearies still
    of that idiot rat catcher’s fife

his oxen and id have followed him home now he must seek a ring
    for a hoped for sweetheart
a breaker of hearts or his goats one blind and one deaf will drown
    in his swill of regrets

bettered by doubt as they may be rows of rodents wrens hens and
    children don’t an ontology make
yell yell yellow yellow the logic walking history’s crutches onto which
    his witches’ wishes have fettered his life

*************************************

S.F.

Poverty mattered little
for little matter mattered.

*************************************

LADIES MANIFEST
       for Perry Robinson and Lester Young

the ladies lead
the ladies plead

while in innocence
of silence

the mob stirs
and mobsters

pummel the looming
unambitious lambs

the venerable false
and the venereal real

sum of quarrelsome eyes
and lovelorn smiles

the ladies bled
the ladies fled

and gladly some
stray lads stayed

 
Michael Jay Price, a retired architect, was born in Brooklyn, NY, where he now lives.  In the late 1970s and early 1980s, he studied poetry with Gilbert Sorrentino.   “Tradition Trade Tragedy” has been previously published in Lips and was performed by Joe Fonda on the Nu Band CD Relentless: Live At The Sunset on the French Futura/Marge record label.  

 



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