The Rip Post                                                                                              

This is a special event
The neurons are all fired up
The dispatches are being relayed
To the far corners on the universe.
Nobody Has To Die
But pause for a moment,
Take time to rehearse,
This isnít prose, itís verse.

The requests have been filed,
The RSVPs have been reconciled.
All thatís left to do is to begin
The compulsory events.

Take a step, take two,
Then fall back, turn back the clock.
Cast the first stone, letís rock.

Compadresí camaraderie
Has put the hearse into reverse,
Thereís no dying hereabouts today
Or it seems itís going to be that way.

Your pulse is linked to the pulsars,
Your neurons to the neutron stars,
Itís a page torn from your old book of tricks.
Your always aping Harry Houdiniís shtick.

The requisite commiseration requires
Regaling the cadres with regulations,
Read aloud, chapter and verse.
Stroke one, strike three, stroke of twelve,

Midnightís hour, cosmic comedianís
Dramatic rendition of Danteí apparition,
Circling, circling like vultures in the wind,
Casting lots, everybodyís packed it in,
Everybodyís sang that hymn.

Memoryís incantations delight
Youíre the last of the long line.
End of the road and end of the page.
The torch has been passed,
The embers have been snuffed.
Quiet descends upon the rising tide,
It will do its bitter work, swallowing up nations,
Casting doubt on your richest poor relations.
Itís not enough to ever win.

Take a step, take two,
Then fall back, turn back the clock.
Youíve remembered something
No one else has forgot.
So get a clue, close down the flue.
Bank the fire and rake up the embers.
Hot time in the old town,

Looking for a way out,
But please donít cast doubt
On the abilities of herbs,
And fungi, ergot and sundry rot
To teach a lesson that lasts
A lifetime, and thatís a lot
Worth casting a hat, worth tossing a ring,
Worth saving a soul, a flag worth waving.
A grand parade of coincidence
Of collaboration, of antique celebration.

This is what Iíve remembered.
And that is what youíve forgot.
Forsake the metropolis and its
Squandered dreams and visions,
Set out for the midlands,
The highlands, the lowlands,
Whatever youíve got.

Step away, pace off the planet,
Spin past the galaxies,
No anticipated realties
Can replicate your experiences.
Notes are not worth taking.
Count your breaths and
Count your blessings.
Cash in your chips.
Itís time to check out.
              ---Jack Oakes 1/24/06


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