people keep killing each other in America

people keep killing each other in America
because it’s too damned safe
people never have a chance to go out
and roister the night a little bit
instead of finding dangerous exciting things to do
instead of exploring dark and forbidding holes in the ground
instead of sleeping with excitable boys and whiskey-voiced women
we are going out to dine and taking pictures of our food

show me the dangerous malcontent
let my nose tingle to the blast and bloom of a cordite rose
let my biceps ache with the throb of a deep bruise
from trading licks with a quick-salted man ‘neath
a tilty street lamp in the worst neighborhood
since Jack the Ripper kept a cactus garden
more bite and less tongue, that’s what I’m calling for
run me every day down the edge of a cutting steel
that I may always be sharp and ready to carve
because I’ve been around enough to know
that life is more than working, shopping
and keeping my eye on this all important screen

sometimes you just got to piss off some guy
who thinks he is in charge to let him know you love him
you got to talk to strangers like they’re family
to let them discover on their own that
we are all family and we are all looking for life
and then maybe some loopy bastard will keep his urge locked away
because he wants to hang around to see
what kind of crazy thing you’ll do next
because whatever it is at least it won’t be boring

I will go to the ocean and dance
I will stand in the street and sing

—Don Whittington


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