poetry by j matthew waters

Archive for the tag “politics”

Plan B

There is a lull
giving me time to think
what to do with
the furniture
the cars
& the children

If we were to flee
that would either
question our innocence
or solidify our guilt
—it’s what they call
a win win situation

It seems the bail
made just the other day
isn’t worth an order
of McDonald’s fries

Inside the rule of law
ticks away
whereas on the outside
it’s a jungle
poachers with spotlights
picking & choosing
leisurely to their liking

In case of emergency
wield the hammer
against the glass
pick up the answer
in the form of a map
unfolding itself
time after time [after time]

march two thousand twenty-three
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

Let the party decide

It was a murder mystery dinner
and I was asked to dress
like Colonel Sanders
and bring a bucket of chicken

Sipping on whiskey
and smoking in the parlor
I listen how Thurston and Lovey
purchased vintage luggage
on amazon-dot-com for
pennies on the dollar
had them shipped free to their
second home in The Bahamas

In the next room Charlie’s angels
watch Norman Mailer
play chess with Jesus Christ
briefly interrupted by the
unidentified host whispering
something or other in their ear

I kept expecting Colonel Mustard
to make an appearance
but I guess that would
just be too weird
but then I heard there was a drug scene
going down in the lower level
and I raised my eyebrows
and thought twice

april two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

there is triviality in everything

somewhere in michigan the tap water
is very hard to drink
and somewhere in minnesota
somebody is cracking jokes

the old couple down the street
did themselves in
like in a bukowski poem
but this time the neighbors
didn’t have a clue
because the old man nuked
the TV dinners

these politics in these
united states
need somehow to reinvent
their labels clearly out of date
unable to stop the wave
that is about to take them over

some of us work on mainstreet
some of us forty stories high
some of us strive
to be alive
in the wires or better yet
on wifi
sometimes barely seen
except when needing to strike

in the meantime economic
inequalities stretch elastically
chartlines hitting new lows
and testing resistance points
while more and more children
act as runners in the alleys
just another piece of the puzzle
royal princes might say
that keeps the status quo
from taking life too seriously

february two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

will you die for him

they shot the protester
because he did protest
yet at his publicized memorial
they celebrated his life
as a court jester

the queen became enraged
at the death of the jester
and she dispatched the royal
police to hunt down
the transparent killers

the transparent killers dissolved
into the adjoining kingdom
blending with the locals
by begging for change
on street corners

recharged with fresh dollars
more protesters perish
by organized zealots
rudimentarily disguised
as the new court jester

april two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

pocket jesus

i wandered the open market
looking for nothing in particular
when a young girl motioned me
from a little blue booth

she held out her hand
some sort of oval silver coin
placed on her palm

what is it i asked

it is yours she said

no it’s not mine i said
i’ve never seen this before

please take it she said
i want you to have it

i lifted the oval silver coin from her palm
and held it between my thumb and forefinger

with my other hand i reached into my shirt pocket
for my reading glasses

it’s a pocket jesus she said

yes i see that now i said
how much do you want for it

it’s priceless she said

as i left the open market
i could hear my pocket jesus
mingling with my american presidents
and i imagined what a lovely scheme
they must be cooking
to finish me off dead broke
but unafraid

march two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the great slide

the older i get the less i know
and that is the only thing
i know for certain

i’ve become disconnected
with the political process
in this screwed up country
where we spend more time
kicking the can
down deficit lane
than trying to figure out
why most of us here
don’t want to be able to
feed our own faces

i heard the other day
the president wants some sort
of mandatory preschool program
put in place
so the little ones can take to task
and figure out why we continue
to get further behind china
who will one day no doubt
be pulling all the strings
dangling above our heads

february two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved


there’s nothing new
going on around here
except for elvis and jesus
walking the streets again

everywhere around the globe
people are revolting
while special forces make sure
they’re in on the action

the price of oil fluctuates
like the unpredictable warming
giving rise to speculation
the end is already here

january two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

just what the world needs

there are too many bad guys
running around.
they’re everywhere
and they make everyone nervous.

these bad guys either carry guns
or they have access to them
or they have whole armies
at their disposal.

there are too many bad guys
running around.
they go to school
or work for the private sector
or the public sector
or no sector at all.

the bad guys either work alone
or become organized as gangs:
some considered illegal
and some considered legitimate
depending upon your perspective.

there are too many bad guys
running around and can be found
anywhere on the planet.
just pick a spot.
they are on television
and some of them provide the news
about the bad guys in waterloo
or shanghai or timbuktu.

there are too many bad guys
running around and they aren’t
going away anytime soon.

january two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the system is broken

it’s always been that way
nothing about the past
is fair
and the future
will always be flawed

when you sit down
and wonder if things are moving
in the right direction
something hits you in the face
reminding you
the system always operates
with vital parts missing

october two thousand twelve
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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