America 2004

With apologies to Allen Ginsberg

America I’ve given you all and now I’m nothing.
America eightyseven billion dollars January 19, 2004.
Go feed your kids with your smart bombs.
America when will you be angelic?
When will you be worthy of your thousand Trotskyites?
America why are your libraries full of cops?
I’m sick of your insane demands.
America after all it is you and I who are perfect not the next world.
Are you being sinister or is this some form of practical joke?
I’m trying to come to the point.
I haven’t read the newspapers for months, everyday somebody gets accused of anti-Semitism.
America I feel nostalgia for Eugene McCarthy.
America I used to be a jingo when I was a kid I’m sorry.
My mind is made up there’s going to be trouble.
You should have seen me reading an almanac.

I’m addressing you.
Are you going to let your emotional life be run by Fox News?
I’m obsessed by Fox News.
I watch it every night.
Sean Hannity berates me every time I turn on the television.
He’s always telling me about patriotism. Tony Blair’s patriotic. The coalition of the willing’s patriotic. Everybody’s patriotic but me.
It occurs to me that I am America.
I am talking to myself again.

Asia is rising against me.
I haven’t got a chinaman’s chance.
I’d better consider my national resources.
My national resources consist of 30,000 angry Shi’ites a Pentagon budget that burns 50,000,000 dollars an hour and eightyfive percent ignorance of Iraq’s location.
I say nothing about my million nonviolent offenders in prison nor the drug war that put them there.
I have abolished the burqas of Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia is the next to go.
My ambition is to be President despite the fact that I’ve read the Constitution.

America how can I write a reasonable essay in your militaristic mood?
I will continue like Michael Ledeen my essays are as individual as his screeds more so they’re all different genres.
America free Jose Padilla (or charge him with something)
America save the Minuteman nuns
America I am Nathaniel Heatwole.

America when I was seven my parents took me to the Republican National Convention they told us the Soviets were in my backyard and the speeches were scary everybody was shouting and sentimental about the mujahedeen it was all so sincere you have no idea what a different thing the party was in 1984 Ronald Reagan was a grand old man a real mensch Barry Goldwater made me cry I once saw George H.W. Bush plain. Everybody must have been a liar.
America you don’t really want to go to war.
America it’s them bad Iranians.
Them Iranians them Iranians and them North Koreans. And them Iranians.
The Islam wants to eat us alive. The Islam’s power mad. Him wants to take our Playboys out our mattresses.
Her wants to grab Beverly Hills. Her needs a sharia MTV. Her wants our crackhouses in Tehran. Him big ayatollah running our foodstamp offices.
America this is the impression I get from looking in the television set.
America is this correct?
I’d better get right down to the job.
It’s true I don’t want to join PNAC or churn clich├ęs at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, I’m skeptical and libertarian anyway.
America I’m putting my treasonous shoulder to the wheel.

– Matthew Barganier