Experimenting with Poetry: Thank You, Kurt Vonnegut

For all the Kurt Vonnegut fans… 

 

Thank you, Kurt Vonnegut

For making it real

For knowing the names

Of  history’s thrill

For telling it so

That I understand

That the way to withstand

Is not through a man

Or not by the ways

All the classy people fathom

By reaching for demons

And calling them angels

And medaling in power

And stealing God’s tower

And making God’s hour

All the more sour

 

And Thank You, Kurt Vonnegut

For making it true

What I was told was a lie

Is plain through and through

You  filled me with hope

Even if I’m just a dope

And even if my religion

Is just a pope on a rope

And Thank You, Kurt Vonnegut

For Billy Pilgrim’s life

Skipping through time

So wrought with our strife

Bearing our burdens

And carrying them home

From this time to that

And finding Shalom

 

Thank You, Kurt Vonnegut

For inventing religion

And living to show

That it was merely a vision

For writing out precepts

And living them too

And somehow making

Profanity true

When he said

“Screw you Jasper,” “and screw… Christmas too.”

I laughed so hard

I peed in my pants

And then cried a little

That I had long missed my chance

To live like your characters

Free from oppression

But somehow you gave me

The comedy to defeat depression

And I slipped into the virtues

Of seeing things upside-down

You stripped me of wisdom

And caused me  to drown

In a baptism of hilarity

That the world is a joke

Where there exists a disparity

Between sharing your tunic and giving your cloak

For joining with Jesus in reframing charity

 

So Thank You, Kurt Vonnegut

For being a teacher

And compelling me to live

Beyond the bleacher

To free the godly

From chivalry’s curse

To exploit the shame

Of the corporate purse

And this I promise

I will keep my word

I will never again grin

At something I heard

I will look past the surface

And find from within

The burden of laughter

Unless it’s sin

But you have told us

What’s sin and what’s not

So we can laugh at ourselves

But not at the shot

Heard round the world

When we drop a bomb

And the enemy dies

That we’re not the grin

At the sin of demise

And the demise of sin

We invented a world

To do ourselves in

But you remind us

Where life

Is fair again

 

So Thank You, Kurt Vonnegut

For waging your war

And fighting it well

To settle the score

My heart is healing

From believing in hell

Because you redeemed it

By the stories you tell

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