Off The Blade

When I look at the television
and say out loud, “you’re a 
fucking moron,” I don’t mean it
literally.

There’s no one here,
for one thing.  Just the flat screen
and the flat face of the flat-out
fucking moron, as I’ve labeled him.

I know labeling is wrong but somehow
I need this. I need to stare into 
that reddish bloat and call him 
something or other, just to keep myself
off the blade. 

I don’t know his actual IQ
of course, for another thing — he’s not
smart, I suspect, more cunning, more
versed in sneaky, better at bulling his way
through the day than at figuring things out. 

And to disgrace the perfectly good word
“fucking” by using it in tandem
with my other words, by intensifying
my disdain for his cretin soul
through the colloquial use
of that beautiful, hothouse, slick-making
word –bah. 

I choose instead to
stare into the screen
while muttering nonsense syllables. 

I’m a person with better things to do
and better uses for my voice. I shall keep silent,
sharpen all the knives in the house,
dig trenches, stock up on books
soon to be banned, call every vulnerable
soul I know and invite them to build a fortress,
learn the rules of dirty pool, develop codes, 
fight as needed, take it to the enemy,
become as valiant as drama majors
on an empty stage waiting for the house lights
to go down and the stage lights to come up —

that’s how I play the game in my head,
and how I shame the game with the incantation,
once again.  “You’re a fucking moron.”
Staring into the screen, wishing I believed
in magic words, keeping myself
off the blade tonight.

About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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