1977

Matt Rader is the author of three books of poems and, most recently, the story collection, What I Want to Tell Goes Like This. He teaches...

 

Maria Callas is dead and Groucho Marx.
Loren Eiseley is dead. Vladimir Nabokov
And Robert Lowell and Elvis. Dead.
This is the year in the Years of Lead
When The Metropolitan Indians rioted
In Bologna after the Carabinieri shot
Francesco Lorusso. They wore warpaint
And skittered and gagged at the tanks
While Johnny Lyndon celebrated the Queen’s
Jubilee on a boat out on the Thames,
Eighty seven years after Wounded Knee.
This is the year the States reinstated
The death penalty and Gary Gilmore
Gave his final grin at 8:07am in front
Of a firing squad at Utah State Prison.
Charlie Chaplin, dear friends, is dead.
The public intellect is looking for a body
In a garage in Los Altos, Silicon Valley.
This is the year of the ersatz investment
In irony, competition, the comedic value
Of total violence we recognize finally
As the final admonishment of the modern.
A year of 3.3 million human zygotes
Soaking in the sodium light of imagination.
The sun is booming. Emanuel Jaques
Drowns in a sink at 245 Yonge Street
And Gerald Hannon publishes “Men Loving
Boys Loving Men” in The Body Politic.
The humours are comely and bilious.
I’m not alive to laugh about any of this.

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