A Most Beautiful Show, poem by Brandon Whitehead

      It’s another beautiful day today,
      85 degrees and sunny,
      A clear and beautiful sky
      without a chance of any rain, snow, ice or sleet—
      so let’s keep up those smiles, people!
      All the polite excuses, the “Oh, Well, that’s ok.”
      and that most important
      “It’s just the way things have too be.”
      Remember, every foul stink
      is a glorious perfume,
      every rank and stained odor
      a boiled and spiced roast of meat,
      the cigarette butts are Turkish delights
      scattered by a White Queen
      in stiletto heels and a push-up bra.
      Wave now to the rotting Dukes and Duchesses
      as their shiny carriages roll by,
      giving back-handed waves
      to the little people of the street
      who do little dances on hard little feet,
      their close-lipped smiles hiding
      their sharp little teeth- It’s a gingerbread world
      and you can eat it all,
      even the walls, brick by brick.
      You can lick the gutters clean
      like frosting off a spoon,
      while boys and girls of all ages
      put on the best freak show that’s ever been-
      Watch as they bang on their cages,
      their eyes rolling back to the whites
      like a shark hooked by a fat man in a tiny boat
      floating in a quite, quite empty sea.
      It’s a beautiful thing how our dervish world
      just spins and spins and spins…
      and you, yes, you, can join right in,
      for just one life, one life
      and you can be in the greatest carnival
      their ever was, better than Catullus to drunk to walk,
      or a chorus of the dammed, playing pan-flutes
      with their lips cut off by leering
      and capricious gods…
      Somewhere, perhaps behind all those stars up there,
      a studio audience is watching it all,
      their laughter noted to us
      as if but a passing thunder’s roll.
      My, oh my, such a beautiful, beautiful show…


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Charles Blackstone
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