Litkicks Message Board Archive

Lampshade

Posted to Poetry




The soft milklamps glow
In the kitchens where
the women who as girls
Had fought for their rights
Now cook and clean
in dirty uniforms.

I look in with my friends,
Kerouac my pocketbook
& the Spanish bicyclemen who
rocket slowly passed
And feel not envy, but pity
For the caged monkey.

Suddenly, the Man,
Police
Man,
bursts in and demands dinner
If not his, then someone's.
He shooes me away from under
The old newspaper lamp
So he doesn't have to think too much
About anyone seeing him
hit her
and again
In the soft white light
Where she embraces him for his power.
She tosses the milk out.

This is the edge of the 'burns
Where the matrons come screaming out
in expensive bugs made to look like
What little youth they have, and
Slackjaw Dean Moriarty lives with
his wife (one of them)
and Spineless Sal Paradise lives with
his mother still.
I come from the highway,
dressed in a Journeyman's finery,
and Tempted to the road leading in.

But it's changed since I
Was here years ago. The
Tract Mansions form a wall to the highway,
So I return to the carless road
Where the moon shines, a guiding light
From its silvered halo
unhindered by neon frights

For if you go down that road,
You could get lost & never emerge.

(cue bongos)