Punk, Meet Suburbanite

commodity, I’m just a commodity
so come on come on come on & use me

You didn’t tell me you were going
didn’t stop to say goodbye
we were getting pretty close, skip the bus, stay

I can tell you’re starving
there’s a concert tonight, plenty of tickets
let’s negotiate. put together an economical package


I’ll hang on your every word
grimace at the right moments
I’m interested in you. I’m your clown

I’ll even dress up for you
mean but squeaky clean; my red brigades T shirt
we’ll share a secret. The rest will stare


My X messed up my mind
it’s tough living in the same town
Let’s have a drink. Here, two hits of speed

I need a friend, a father-confessor
a foil to show me error
without the pain. for a moment together we can build castles


I’m a good friend, yes
we’ll have fun together, I can give you what you need
But your child. I know you need a man with money

I’ll be a sport, we can relax
you won’t be sorry
tell me, tell me. can I be your man?


I don’t know yet, don’t ask
I don’t need sex to build those castles
Just talk. I’m alienated, draw me out

ask the right questions, make me see the humor
I just want to feel good for once
you can see, you’re smart. can you bring me a new kind of love?


Cry. for me, so I can cry too. I feel your pain
but I can’t do anything for it


I never cry


talk more then, it’s what you want


I hate my job, my boss, my life
But I can’t live your way
I can’t give up. A little speed now & then, I’m 28 years old

the taxman is making me broke, they’ll take my trailer house away
I have a kid to feed
I’m scared. Alone, and there’s no help anywhere unless I sell myself


Chin up, my sweet, bravery will get us nowhere
god I know it’s fucked
The Party is no answer. I won’t push it on you

the future is dead you know
things will only get worse, let me cite statistics
I’m here. I wish I could fix it for you


Thanks for that, you know, there’s no one else to tell this to
no one cares, they have their own troubles
I was seeing a shrink. But I followed your advice and quit

Let’s laugh about it, please?
If we don’t we’ll kill ourselves
I’m a cynic on the outside. try harder, come up with an answer!


I think intimacy strengthens the walls
shuts out the externals
I’m not sure. But I think I lack it

You think I’d never marry you, probably right
who knows? but you’ve seen that dead end before
Never Again, you said. That’s alright, though, it wouldn’t help you


You’re from another world, one I never knew
my mother was a strict baptist, tell me what you see from your vantage point
My turn to buy. Drink up there

I have no friends, only competitors and enemies
now you want sex
that will destroy my impartial companion. You understand don’t you?


I understand. I’ve heard this before, every time in fact
I’m the hired escort, part of your jewelry
you need a gay man. did you think I was mr. right?

I don’t intend to be mean, you can forgive my bitterness
you know what we’re like
look. You know what signals you gave me

Yes, but I need someone to whom I can say: No
then I won’t be cheap and easy: a slut without prospects
I don’t want to drift downward, drink myself to death. no, no, no!

The pain is so great I want to scream!
intimacy cannot help me, I have too much already
Don’t make me a product! don’t offer to buy me! I won’t sell!


you’re right. I counsel hate, rebellion, then.
you’re right. I counsel nothing.
I’m slow, thickheaded. I wanted to be your commodity.

I want to die, to be resurrected, and to die again forever
I’m a machine. I’m dead already, you knew that
Buy me. Use me, throw me away

Originally appeared in Inside Joke #20

archive: poetry

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