Sunday (Slam) Sermon

I came in 2nd in the poetry slam last night, due in part to the poem below. The prize money ($75) almost exactly covers my recent sushi bill. Coincidence? I think not...



Each day
every 24 hour cycle
each complete rotation of this little blue-green rock
roughly 155,000 people die.
That's a little less than 6500 every hour
and about 108 per minute.
Now, I'm not going to say that this poem is going to kill 324 people,
but statiscally speaking, that's how it looks.
But you good people, you needn't worry
because you are not among that 324
it's not your time-
wait your fucking turn.
Because those 324 have waited their turn
Some of those 324 are grandmothers
who are pretty sure they know where they are going,
and some are infants,
who don't even know where they are,
but they have all stood in line
and reached that precipice-
and then they fall in
or they were pushed
or, worse yet, they jump.

Some people are certain
that if you are standing in the right line
the other side is the greatest amusement park ride ever
you hand your ticket to St. Peter
and then over the edge and straight down,
pull up doing 7 Gs
then up over the top, weightless
into a triple corkscrew
and it's cool, 'cuz you don't lose your lunch...
But if you are standing in the wrong line
it's just straight down-
for eternity.



Personally, I plan to stay in line for as long as possible-
hell, I'm letting people cut in front of me!
But I don't think it really matters what line you're in.
If you're in the line for heaven, or the one for hell
or the one that lights incense and meditates
or the one that pours milk on Ganesh
or the one with the special underwear-
even if you think you get to stand in line over and over-
what matters is what you do while you're waiting.
Did you make use of the time, or were you just waiting for the ride to start?
Were you one of those fuckers who pushed people?
Or were you a coward who jumped?

And if you are one of those who believes
that rules are rules
that a single try is enough
that you only get to stand in line once,
just let me leave you with this old saying,
this classic aphorism;
"If at first you don't succeed,
skydiving isn't for you."

Go in Peace.

3 comments:

Mark Travis said...

But I like the special underwear.

Caitie said...

That was deep and, in an odd way, quite beautiful.

La Petite Fleur (AKA Tessa) said...

but i like skydiving...

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