a big Thursday night at Hollywood and Western

they’re back again and the glass is breaking in the big
brick apartment as the ships set out to sea the owner is
in Hawaii and an agent sends him the rents.
the roaches are as large as potato bugs
they eat plastic parts and want ads and are obnoxious and
ego-struck as rock stars
failing to move when the kill approaches.

as the graceless clocks whirl as the aero-space centers
sprout
they’re back again:   the heads, the winos, the mad are
back again… after 2 or 3 months of silence the glass is
breaking, shards of windows tinkle down fire escapes
females talk loudly for 35 or 40 minutes running
then there are screams, hard hollow thuds, a man’s voice:
“GOD DAMN YOU, I TOLD YOU TO SHUT UP!”
then comes the answer:
“I DON’T GIVE A SHIT!   I JUST DON’T GIVE A SHIT!   KILL
ME!   KILL ME!”
then the man is quiet and the woman’s voice continues.

I’m surprised at the constant anger in humanity.
it seems as if everybody is angry on the freeways,
in the supermarkets, at home.
they seem churlish, neurotic, constipated.   I too
am that way.
I have screamed at a woman so you could hear me a block and
a half away.   I could feel the chords in my neck getting as
big and as round as Paper-Mate pens.
there is nothing worse than being with a voice alone,
trying to say what you feel is really true
while the person you are saying it to considers you crazy
and uselessly wrong, and everybody else feels that you are
exactly that also.
this is when a man gets alone and likes it:
hermets are created by the democratic vote.

and tonight they are going good, they find endless bits
of glass to break, they are good at that, at locating
that
as the ferns die unwatered in nursery homes
as great white horses gallop through the fog with
valentines in their mouths, here are more screams
more glass   more thuds.  mixed into an empire of sounds
from voices with glass faces.

it doesn’t have to be a Saturday night around here
the poor and the mad (and therefore the cruel to
themselves) have no calendar.

now a man in the alley to the east sits in his old
car holding the throttle to the floor, he’s either
trying to charge his battery or he’s drugged or
mad–he just started his motor and is tearing it
to pieces while it’s cold, he’s murdering his car
he needs to, now he’s up the alley and gone and
in the brick apartment to the west it’s silent
maybe the police have answered some calls or
there’s been murder or the needle the snort
has worn off, the angel dust has returned to
heaven.

it’s quiet now except for some footsteps just
back and to the left of this court.

the addled boys above me whose water pipe drips
upon my porch when they shower
the addled boys above me who wear split
red and white walking shorts
have turned off their stereo

it’s quiet, everything’s quiet. I think I’ll telephone
my love in Redondo Beach.   she can make me laugh.   I
hope that she can make me laugh.
I could go out and look at the red brick apartment
house but I already know what I would see:   some
lights on, a quiet yellow, no movement; other windows
dark
mostly all the fire escapes dripping down and
waiting.

everybody tires finally. I have drunk everything around.
I poke around in the refrigerator looking for a loose
can of beer.   there’s nothing.
you must believe this:   I can now hear the sound of
crickets.   those red bricks get tired.