Saturday, January 31, 2009

Cleaving Pinochet

Pinochet Prison Planet

“i can’t find— my passport.”
—adrienne rich, “usonian journals,”
the school among the ruins

i once saw general pinochet—in his dracula cape
aboard the esmeralda— when they tortured us
they stripped us naked—hosed us down
with saltwater on deck—the sailors and marines
were young and ruthless—faceless and grinning
they were just following orders—don’t they always?

then they drugged me—dumped me off a helicopter
as i fell down into—the pacific ocean i thought of
gay carib key west hart crane—white upturned eyes
of greedy sharks—waiting with bated breath
american pirate movie—except i didn’t get to
walk the plank—i was just a naïve baby-boomer

a dead gay poet—way back then in 1973
i lived with my lover—in downtown santiago
then i found myself—in al-gharib prison
with awful electrodes—zapping on my manhood
the same young soldiers—shamelessly leering at me
getting off on my pain—somebody told me i was

lucky just to be alive—even though i ended up
dumb & speechless—in a wheelchair for life
i can’t find my passport—where am i anyway?
prison planet pinochet? night of the living dead?
the nixon-reagan-bush years—having come and gone
what do TPTB have planned next—for their children

each generation—kills the next one
the great american pastime—our parents
butchered in Europe & Korea—then our turn
dying baby boomers—in lovely viet nam
what’s next for—my lucky JFK generation
Saramago-esque—gulag archipelagos?

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