mercredi 30 mai 2012

A Childhood dream

"What are you gonna be when you grow up?"
asked my parents, my friends,
"I'm going to be part of a police lineup."
I replied, standing upright and fixing my look into the void
chin pointing like a torpedo.

Like many kids I loved cops and robbers, but what fascinated me
was the idea of standing in a line
and in that line
a criminal, real, in flesh and blood
held his blank gaze towards a two-way mirror
sharing his vibes amongst us motley lot.

There is something seductive about a gangster face
Out on a limb

lips tied shut
and ready to devour
the first

I went to school where studies in literature always led me back to the scene of the crime
And then I started volunteering for police lineup work.
At first it gave me the chills
but after some convictions the feeling morphed into a state of excitement.
I was like being an emergency doctor:
no long trails with painstaking juries 
Here, I stood in the line and painted the meanest face I could as I looked into the mirror
often feeling solidarity -for behind that reflective shadow we could make out a moving,
 accuser, a man, a woman pacing back and forth and ready to raise his or her finger and say "that one!"

More and more rarely would I go home to visit my dear parents
Oddly I grew afraid they would look at me; judge me in a funny way.
One day when my little brother was standing on his toy zebra

I had a clear vision of the perfect police lineup
Where everyone was a criminal hence everyone was a suspect
So the aim was to pick out the most criminal of the criminals
and if you did

My heart started beating because when I get a good idea I know I have to pounce on it
Like Pinocchio going after the grasshopper
I sprung into action

In America with over 3 million prisoners we need more lineups
We need to build them like airport strips allowing for 
easy suspect mobility and easy identification

Some say lineups are a pain in the ass because there are lots of crackpots out there
Making it all the harder for a hapless victim who, after all, while under duress, cannot probably remember if the assailant was wearing a back or a brown shoe.

Thank God we have institutions like MIT and a criminal justice system that
can fork over a little R&D to work out this equation
But seriously, why put out so much effort when the NRA has its own solution to rising crime?

vendredi 25 mai 2012

Born Yesterday

Born Yesterday" by Shakespeare Philip Larkin and Langola
Dedicated to Daphne P.                 May 22, 2012

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May
Tightly-folded bud,
I have wished you something
None of the others would:
Not the usual stuff
About being beautiful,
Or running off a spring
Of innocence and love -
They will all wish you that,
And should it prove possible,
Well, you’re a lucky girl.
Delicious dinners await thee and daily
Don't dare dream of dating dancers in detention during daylight.
Seek! cheese deliveries of dark, dense diaries that will extoll demons,  destroying your parents  determination for organic, wholesome Swissness.

If your name is Daphne
May you be unordinary;
Have, like other women,
And  talents that transcend Swiss and English borders:
Not ugly, not good-looking, not not,
Nothing uncustomary
To pull you off your balance while scooting down the hills of Morges,
Roll, as Young Swiss man eyes and mouths gaping
Stops all from working: heads turning, grabbed by you locks of curly blond hair; the blast of your wind past
In fact, some say you chime of a thin Farley’s Rusk; crunchy, yet resistible
If that is what an extemporaneous un-emphasized, enthralled,
Post Wifi Baby Daphne must be!

jeudi 17 mai 2012

Me and My Drone

No two drones are alike
My drone
A high hurling autopilot deus ex machina
Has followed me and my family for years.
Sometimes I ask: "How many ways doth my drone love thee?"

One: When I painted my roof with tar, the drone checked from an altitude of 3,000 feet (using its  gamma ray sensors, biological sensors,  camera through the clouds) if the tar had indeed seeped into the cracks.

Two: to make sure that my balding spot is properly brushed when going to work.

Three: when visiting a new site my drone can tell me how many stairs I have to walk up or down.

Four: My drone can tell me how many police cars are in my neighborhood; knowing where they are stalking has made me more relaxed and my blood pressure has gone down.

Five: Since I love chipmunks I wish to know, before my dog gets my morning paper, how many chipmunks are in my garden.

My drone, rain or shine, can send me accurate information regarding not only chipmunks, but chipmunk predators. That's also why I arm my drone with Tomahawks SSH1A's (a family version missile that is meant to take out only domestic animals) because there are too many cats in my neighborhood.

My community doesn't with that we use the leaf-blower if there are more than 6 blowers on the block, I can do a quick check and see how many neighbors are blowing before taking out my gear.

And what about all those hours spent waiting to buy a ticket on Broadway? Since we have our drone we have cut those lines in half, using stealth technology brings on a windfall of smiles.

 From my remote control synthetic vision system I can
night or day,
seek, observe and react in real time to real situations

I can even follow my kids movements 
whether they be 10 or 10,000 miles from home!
My wife and I are so happy with our drone we
decided to buy another one.

The XXX-WMW by Lockeed
-Capable of flying 24 hours a day 
-Capable of being recharged by laser light
-Capable of flying up to 200 mph with a decibel count of under 50
The XXX-WMW has been approved by the San Francisco Police and
The Serbian Vanilla and Chocolate Swirly Tango dance company
(first reconnoitered by the XXX-WMWjr)

There are so many applications for a drone, it is time everyone should have their own 
With a global landscape that is more user friendly
The economy will sky rise.
Drones don't deliver delicious diners
But they can let us see our pizza on its way getting delivered.

samedi 12 mai 2012

The day Mom died

For years she suffered
And I prepared -or tried- for that fateful day.
I smeared on so much empathy
If mom were a toast
Even she would have gone soft.

I tried to reconnect sinews that had been torn
enmeshed neuralgic structures
tangled after years of family riffraff.

Trying to paste it all together was naive,
even in the name of the Family.
Trying to be "there" was idealistic,
when for so many years we were pushing apart.

It was a week when the rains heaved in
My worries of "nature drying" were dispelled when the
phone rang announcing mother lay dying
She had a week left at best, so I began to prepare my bags
and then
a point

Burning pain, I knoweth not where from
A small but deep point, like a bite that drilled into my flesh
had me check into the emergency
I had to check
I a nurse, a health professional, and then be off! to my grave business.

Upon examination the doctor said,

"We have to operate tonight, no later, no later."
"But my mother is dying, I have to go"
"If we let you go, you will join your mother, but not on this living world"

My soul was jolted
had I trucked with evil spirits?

had I not gone to church enough?
had I not been honest? were some of the myriad of questions that jangled me.
That night the surgeon removed the foreign agent that had invaded my body

That night my mother died.

My friend accused a parallel psychosomatic disorder,
a stress inflection on the corpus callosum just above the temporal lobe that I had suffered from.

Regardless, heavy doses of antibiotics were prescribed
that ultimately buried my stomach in a WWI trench.

Still, with stoic resolve, I went to the funeral
Wanting to hold still, to listen still,
to the words and the music that my mother loved
Only if still
My intestines didn't rumble like a tank moving over the trenches where my stomach lie
awaiting to explode.

Only if the internal aftershock wasn't there
But it was.

Forced to leave under the watchful family eyes
I tried to change thought
Didn't my cat go for a walk
Didn't you spend three days,
Three nights looking and worrying about it just before my infection?

And that fly that got under my bed cover?

My mind was slipping. Was it the antibiotics or my infection coming back to get me?
The cold bathroom at the funeral home piped insipid organ music
I held on to a heating pipe in the stall
And wished I were

In my bath, thinking about mother.

jeudi 3 mai 2012

My roof has an anti aircraft missile system

It may have taken years
that really felt like decades

True, I already had my state business licence
and a liability insurance for over a million pounds
-my former wife though I was a safe investment.

Yet as I lay lying in the darkness of my bedroom
The thought that at any day, any hour my building
and my neighborhood could be attacked

by plane, by rocket, by a suicide truck
left me unnerved; my sleep jilted like a discarded lover

It took endless meetings with the co-owners
yet we prevailed: today we have an anti aircraft missile device on the roof.

My little girl loves it! She is charmed by its whirling, turning spinning

She said it is like a jellyfish with eyeballs, a tortoise pivoting like a ballerina,
Its eyes fixed on the sky
regardless of the weather
regardless of events below on the street
matter little economic highs or lows
matter little which Prime Minister rules

Our sweet, faithful, reliable anti aircraft missile system is

In the dog of the night

Beware! If it be a fish and chips stand whose merchant pretends to be innocently selling at our corner or
an olympic athlete making a false start at the 100 meter dash to create a diversion in order to attack our building

Safety has no price, security no place, and fear no proximity.