Friday, August 17, 2007

Ruth Lepson's "it never goes away completely"

it never goes away completely
like the usa in the 50s
in a poor small town in the middle of nowhere
in those weeds by the side of a house, its paint peeling
and nobody home I am sitting here and do not move
across the street 2 american flags
cheer like leaders in the wind
that brought memory and war again
jazz helps fast language helps
war wounds yelp men dead again
we went to strange places on vacation
it hurt to live with them
there was no way to communicate
blurting it out didn't help anything
they just say you're strange in the vest
in the sink poison in the purse
so rest, rest till all that talk of
's squeezed out of you

About the poem, Ruth Lepson writes:

I guess I wrote the poem to express some feeling abt the personal & political, how intertwined they are. Saw a painting of some weeds behind an old house & felt melancholy & realized that in childhood when my parents & I went to unknown places (to us) that were poor or out of the way I felt sad. Later I realized I was projecting something onto the people who lived there. I used to live in Watertown, MA (moved to Cambridge last winter), in a working class neighborhood, where flags were displayed, which always made me feel I shd keep my politics to myself.

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