American Idle

In the pre-war days the youth were bright eyed with pearly with teeth and eager-beaver looks and combed back hair shirts tucked in. Life was good in those days when the sharp dress boys with their military hairdo and shouted golly shooting marbles with their other pals and peddled along their paper routes with a paint by numbers smile throwing opinions at the sleeping doorways on one of those all American stereotype catalog of the rustic Huffy bike with the suicide king card slapping against the wheel along the ride to their home with bright green grass and white picket fence. Then their happy moms and dads took them for rides and out for soda pops down at the malt shops and when it was bed time all the I love you stories managed to calm the kids to sleeep, their proud and smiling parents, “We’ve got such great kids. Isn’t life grand? Sure is, darling!”
In the world as it is there is but one war and that is the war inside. the eyes are panicked unslept and wild-eyed, some in a daze, some in some distant detached fugue so far away you have to email him when he’s sitting right beside you with yellow teeth dingy from the cigarette tar and big blue bags under the eyes, up all night smoking that shit and playing Star Fox, “This is the best thing ever…” The loneliness is digital and complete; who needs to go out when you’ve got a list of friends to click on nice and quick and easy like? Oh, what’s his name… he’s advertising his new Hitler hair do and look at her she’s fly…
The kids don’t shoot marbles then count their pay as they did in the pre-war days they count their change and shoot their veins lay back and laugh, “What a jaded game.” Their parents aren’t home and when they are don’t care, we’ll take him out with the trash in the morning, didn’t you see the constellation on his arms? He always was the big dipper…
“We knew that kid wouldn’t amount to shit.”
“Yes, maybe he’ll kill himself.”
And he does, “Golly!”
Autopsy reveals multiple layers of self abuse, attrition for the wrongs that Karma counted up and left on your sheet, the sheet you have to pay the debts with when you hand your body back to where you leant it. Write down everything everyone has given you and in the will, give the rotten rusted shit right back. You are free.
There are no sock hops any more with bebop dresses and and clean cut guys to cut the jig. The guys hopped up bought his bitch a bebop dress and showed her how to cut, “We use baking soda. Junkies can’t tell. What the fuck do they know? They’re junkies. They deserve to be cheated.”
There are no picket fences and clean cut lawns around, no kids on paper routes, kids plugged into digitalized fantasy simulation, oh an artist on Monday, that’s for Janet, and for Diane, hmm, I’ll use the bleeding the heart for her. That’ll roll one in.
“You should mount that one on the wall.”
The kid that once yelled Extra EXTRA READ ALL ABOUT IT is now running around central park pulling his hair and teeth out yelling, EXTRA, EXTRA, EVERYBODY’S GONNA DIE.

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