Spoonful: A Gathering of Stone Soup Poets

An extension of Cambridge's Stone Soup Poetry Venue.

Poem by James Van Looy

Photo by Bill Perrault

On the Road or Under It

Bye, bye Old lonesome Jack
if anybody gave a fuck anyway
it was you,
you were the one
on the road or under it,
you may never know Maggie Cassidy
but you certainly knew time
passing by all the niggertowns
at twice the speed of spite
blowing your whistle around the bend
from yourself the bum,
the America that drinks and stays home
always looking for home
somewhere at twice the speed of flight
old traveling Jack,
peddling and pawing after that moving train
always too late
but observing all the detail
and obsession of browns and grays
the bacteria and bacchae
of all the waiting rooms
waiting for a description to coalesce
into a prescription, Jack

Jack, your dharma
became our karma
for those here struggling
with Moloch in Babylon

Oh, Jack how could you die like that
we miss you so
drank to death
your own ulcer
festering in us, too
the pain of having to be
without ever just being
bye, bye old lonesome Jack bye, bye