April 21 Birthday: Iggy Pop

Photograph my Mikael Jansson

Photograph my Mikael Jansson

Cold Metal

I play tag in the auto graveyard
I looked up at the radio tower
Rag tent by the railroad tracks
Concrete poured over steel bridge
Pondered my fate
While they built the interstate

I’m a product of America
From the morgue to the prisons
Cold metal, when I start my band
Cold metal, in my garbage can
Cold metal, gets in my blood
And my attitude

Threw my hide in an automobile
Heard a song called “Drive the wheel”
Truckers, trailers, tractors caught me workin’

This is the song of my heritage
From the bad to the Buddha
Cold metal, that’s what it be
Cold metal, from sea to sea
Cold metal, it’s how we win
And also how we sin
How we sin, how we sin, how we sin, how we sin

Cold metal, in the afternoon
Sounds lovely like a Hendrix tune
Cold metal, it’s the father of beat
The mother of the street
Cold metal, it rolls on by
Cold metal, gonna raise it high
Cold metal, it’ll even fly
Rust buckets in the sky
Cold metal, got to be
Skeleton of the free
Cold metal, it’s gotta be
Better save a tree
Save a tree, save a tree, save a tree, save a tree
Yeah

–Iggy Pop

NOTE: In honor of National Poetry Month, each day a person’s birthday will be celebrated with a poem about or by him/her. The poems come from all over the place.

April 20 Birthday: George Takei

George Takei Appears On "The Morning Show"Takei, George

Long-time partners fear the Star Trek franchise.
Episodes are ruthlessly parodied on The Family Guy.
Television stars report the starship.
   pay money for the original real life novel TV show —
Closeted stars teleport the final frontier.
Political activists made in studio appearances on the Howard Stern Show.
Closeted star discovers the relocation camps.
   watch the real life —
Asian American actors report the Vulcan.
Lieutenants made in studio appearances on the Howard Stern Show.
Closeted stars criticize the final frontier.
   dream the novel —
Lieutenant loves the television network.
International stars win the Vulcan.
   write the real life movie —
–Mark Sample
This is an excerpt from a longer poem. I really don’t know what it’s all about, but it’s kind of cool to see the whole thing, scrolling down a page that you can look at here. Below is a note about it, which I don’t understand either.
“Takei, George” is a remix of Nick Montfort’s “Taroko Gorge,” transforming Montfort’s original meditative generative poem into a comment on pop culture, fandom, and contemporary politics.
NOTE: In honor of National Poetry Month, each day a person’s birthday will be celebrated with a poem about or by him/her. The poems come from all over the place.

April 19 Birthday: Eliot Ness

eliot-ness_thumb1Eliot Ness Pisses on Crime

You can pretend like
you are Eliot Ness
ripping the river
with machine gun spray.
All the bad guys in the world
are holding their breath
under water,
waiting in the hope that
you will run out of ammo
before they run out of air.
However, as Eliot Ness,
it’s not going to happen.
You have been pissing
from bridges
since time began,
and the bad guys, even
though they dive deeply
are eventually swept
to the surface. It helps
if you’re young, stung
with vinegar, untouched
by the shy bladder.

–Al Ortolani

NOTE: In honor of National Poetry Month, each day a person’s birthday will be celebrated with a poem about or by him/her. The poems come from all over the place.

April 18 Birthday: Ann Leah Fox

illus15Haunted Ground

And slight, withal, may be the things which bring
Back on the heart the weight which it would fling
Aside forever—it may be a sound,
A tone of music, summer eve, or spring,
A flower—the wind—the ocean—which shall wound
Striking the electric chain, wherewith we are darkly bound.

–Lord Byron

Ann Leah Fox was a medium who claimed this poem came to her during her work.

NOTE: In honor of National Poetry Month, each day a person’s birthday will be celebrated with a poem about or by him/her. The poems come from all over the place.

April 17 Birthday: Sean Bean

seanbeanIt’s not a poem about or by Sean Bean, but here he is reading Wilfred Owen’s poem “Anthem for Doomed Youth.”

Anthem for Doomed Youth

What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
      — Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
      Only the stuttering rifles’ rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells;
      Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,—
The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
      And bugles calling for them from sad shires.
What candles may be held to speed them all?
      Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
      The pallor of girls’ brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.
–Wilfred Owen
NOTE: In honor of National Poetry Month, each day a person’s birthday will be celebrated with a poem about or by him/her. The poems come from all over the place.

April 16 Birthday: Charlie Chaplin

chaplinCharlie Chaplin Impersonates a Poet

The stage is set for imminent disaster.
Here is the little tramp, standing
On a stack of books in order
To reach the microphone, the
Poet he’s impersonating somehow
Trussed and mumbling in a
Tweed bundle at his feet.
He opens his mouth: Tra-la!
Out comes doves, incandescent bulbs,
Plastic roses. Well, that’s that,
Squirms the young professor who’s
Coordinated this,
No more visiting poets!
His department head groans
For the trap door. As it
Swings away
The tramp keeps on as if
Nothing has occurred,
A free arm mimicking
A wing.
–Cornelius Eady
NOTE: In honor of National Poetry Month, each day a person’s birthday will be celebrated with a poem about or by him/her. The poems come from all over the place.