RICOCHET

Poetry

[ALL RIGHTS RESERVED]

BY RUI CARLOS DA CUNHA

All smiles and teeth, clueless, they enter the nightclub where I work box office

Literally, they cute as stuffed animals but the whole world is on fire

Lightning strikes from above hits a rock, ricochet, sets a forest alight

Sugar is sweet, the world stupid as saccharine, no one gonna listen

Maybe they be too smart, too fast for the lightning strikes them dead in their tracks

If this world means nothing to anyone, okay, party until you dead

Left for dead friends party on my grave in my wake, even a tsunami

Ends nothing, they party, clueless to any threats to their stupidity

Suffering is nothing to the party people, vomit, they miss the mark

Abandoned of all hope, the sky falls, the floods come, water rises, cars float

Narcissistic nodding to the rhythm, downbeat, of the music, hip-hop

Damned if they do, damned if they don't, so they party until the devil comes

To hell or high water, demonic minions drag like queens down the catwalk

Elegant pussy boys, crushed to look like women in fashion magazines

Endlessly search the sky for answers from the stars, all I see are comets

Trash, cosmic dust, debris, detritus falls to earth, meteorites destroy

Humanity, instant karma, Lennon is dead, shot by both sides, Chapman

Catcher in the rye rots ergot to the witch trials, a rebellious jukebox

Learns better to spin discs, to scratch vinyl, to tweak and twerk on the dancefloor

Undulating asses entice the gods to play, to bray like a donkey

Energy balances on a teeter-totter equation to matter

Lopsided, the fulcrum lifts nothing on the scales, the magic disappears

Egotistical brats throw shade, feather pillows, full of public contempt

Shadows and reflections of temporality, our perceptions dispel

Scattered disco ball light, I'm a shattered, shattered, Charlie Watts, rest in peace

The end of an era, the little drummer boy plays "Taps" for the soldiers

How long Miles been dead now, Selim Sivad blows horn while the dead awaken

Ennobled by Legion, we are many, for swine drown in the sea, Jesus

Yesterday, I woke up to screaming children, God, their lungs unfilled with smoke

Engage disengagement, elevate the masses, educate the rabble

Nothing of importance sails port to port, on ships for the Inquisition

Tranquility base lands marvelous on the moon while Buzz and Neil bouncing

Entertain the masses around the globe, decades later we still bouncing

Remember, I was born in Bombay, twenty-three days before they landed

Tranquility after the Stonewall Uprising at the Inn in Greenwich

Humble pie, the police could not serve nor protect, so they simply ate crow

Emerging markets prove the value of body cameras to document

Necessity reveals the puzzle still unsolved, are they necessary

I watch as the watchmen change roles, "serve and protect" the most recent motto

Genesis uncertain, the when, where, why, and how, simply approximate

Hold the tantō, short sword, of blind hypocrisy, a game of seppuku

Translate a suicide by citizen police to social media

Carry the torch for whom, for fallen officers or for people they kill

Lash out in ignorance at culpability painted in black and white

Underneath the facade, a cracked surface, damaged by years of corruption

Burn both ends late at night reading old documents trying to see beyond

Will wonders never cease, will fiction become real, will we deny the truth

Haunted by phantasms, by phantoms and ghosts, truth hides within a nightmare

Every good parent checks underneath their child's bed, or inside her closet

Remember this, I know nothing about the truth, I am not a parent

Even philosophers denied the poet's words as beautiful mischief

I digress to cover the sky with clouds of thought blown slowly by the wind

Work is not fun and games, even in a nightclub, the repetition grinds

Ordinary people seek extraordinary experience in dreams

Remember, I was born in India, a man of South Asian descent

Kiss the air of both cheeks like the French sniff their bread on both sides of the boule

Boredom overcomes time, killing with ritual exactitude the blade

Ordinary people observe the gapers block, they rubberneck the scene

Xenophobia plays with stereotypes checked at the door, on my sleeve

Ordinary people joke around to scope out the fresh meat they perceive

Four lions yawn, the kill too scrawny for the chase, a leopard licks her chops

Forget racial difference, forge a link to the now, the person before me

In this moment, I see cosmic dust in your eyes, the veil of hidden truth

Concern for your welfare and all our survival is of prime importance

Enter wearing a mask, the pandemic persists, the Delta variant