Monday, January 22, 2018

Fifty Years
It was the Velvet Underground...
Waiting for the Man
I remember being eleven years old in '68.
Waiting for Frank Brown's brother, a wounded soldier from Vietnam. I was a kid and he was eighteen. He had a bullet in his leg, and he limped round with a painful gate as we all laughed when we ate blanched American cake.
I didn't say this to Frank, how I was eleven and I didn't want to go to Vietnam.
There was that neighbor across the street, he got shot in a jungle, an enemy bullet pierced his spine. He grew his hair long and danced on his wheelchair like a helicopter. I don't remember his name, just that he was a man.
In 1968 they shot that Negro Preacher in Memphis, they killed America's King.
I was eleven years old, the black kids came to our Sacred school. The principal said don't go outside. I saw out the window they had ghetto clubs and ghetto chains. They wanted to hurt us like we hurt them. The police sirens scared 'em away. Me and Frank Brown ran home. "Frank," I said. "I don't want to go to Vietnam." I had fear in my heart, but no malice or hate.
Bobby Bitner's father aimed his rifle up and down our White street. "Don't you worry, I'll shoot any Niggers that come up and touches our ivory gates." Poor Bobby and his brother Rodney, I'd see their dad beat 'em red. The brothers hated black people too. But white and black soldiers died in jungle lands.
It was the Velvet Underground...
Waiting for the Man
They killed RFK, and I saw the outpouring of grief. But Bobby Bitner's Dad gloated, like he soldiered America's War of Hate.
I was eleven years old and I didn't want to go to Vietnam.
It's fifty years since '68, and I still don't want to go to that land.
Like the Velvet Underground,
I'm still Waiting for the Man

1 comment:

Brother Ollie said...

Nice this is a cool one. Dig how you weave sweet imagery with a deep tale.