Yelling Fire

Trapped in a theater of misery
The voices in my head
Talking over the frown lines
All over my face.
Loneliness, pity, and loss of me was
Nothing but a way of life
Back in the mid-2000s.

Friends picked me up
Taking me to Tennessee
To stand in the dust
Before rains turned it all to mud
Just so I could listen
To the plaque-clearing sounds
Of protest songs about the war in Iraq.

The rain fell with great effect on my mood,
I jumped with all the others,
Most twenty or so years younger than me,
But I didn’t care,
I was free, away from the chatter, sold on the idea
That I could move on.
I owe Franti that one.


  1. I totally agree. The school district didn’t deseg until 1968. Rawls Byrd was a superintendent who fought against it and then they named an elementary school after him. Sad and that it never was talked about, even in hs, is more sad.

  2. Perry Como :)… Wow. John Wayne too! Weird, different, special, normal childhood all wrapped up.

    Oddly (maybe), the thing I always reflect on most about those years is the institutional segregation in Williamsburg (and beyond). White, you get this schedule/curriculum, black, you get this other one. I was too blind to it at the time but I see what is was clearly today. Too many were held back from realizing the potential of success.

    Crazy, maybe, but that’s my memory of WJJC Public Schools.

  3. Thanks for the compliment and you keep being the happy rambler. You’re on and adventure with purpose. Don’t sell yourself short, though. Fife and Drum Corps and Perry Como, right?

  4. I imagine your son’s music might appeal to me more than my son Matthew’s EDM stuff but I’m proud of him for giving it a shot. I was too chicken to try anything daring back then. I always ask Matthew about the bonnaroo headliners I recognize and he never sees their sets. Different worlds…. Keep up the good writing, I really enjoy it.

  5. Good lineup…I think my brother-in-law was there that year. My son Matthew is playing an EDM set for the third time this summer. It’s interesting to hear the lineup he goes to see.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s