Brain Cleaning & Repair

by Darryl Price

You've been given some really cruel thoughts that are not your own.

You've been given some really stupid sets of rules which are impossible

to follow. You can learn to manage for yourself. Remember who you

were before they told you who you were. You've been trained

since birth to get upset by all manner of things which are

not true, at least no truer than the others. These people, they

are going to ask you for your life, it doesn't matter what

for, but let's say to protect certain behind the curtains money managers

from discovery, there is always a back room somewhere. You've been given

an unopened box in a familiar hotel room. You've been given a pretty expensive watch. A diamond 

ring. What you have not been given is the embrace you deserve, 

that belongs to you, because it has been stolen by human beings

who make vampires look like good little shepherds. Remember who you were

when you liked yourself. That person's depending on you now to know

the difference between an implanted feeling and one's own real deepest feeling.

Go deeper. Deeper. Deeper. Find yourself in there. Right now you're a candle in

a row of lit candles, waiting to be used, thrown away and replaced, 

all to illuminate the dinners of a very few hungry hungry hippos.

Unless you wake up from this medicated stupor and start to think

outside of TV-land. Unless you can remember how to dream something of

your own choosing. Unless you are willing to find out for yourself

what you believe in, who you are, and what makes you tick. 

You've been given a plastic world to play in, but there's a

very real world where you come from and where you'll always belong

because it is your home. Call it Rock. Call it love. Call it 

nature. Call it soul. Anything you want, but use your own sword

for it. Experience that force of push and pull. Pronounce it with every breath left in your body. Let it

show you its timeless meaning. Listen. Listen for the undeniable presence that flows

everywhere and nowhere, and then tell me who these people are who

feel like they own you. They say poetry is dead. It is 

not dead, it is a fucking dragon, it cannot die. They say war 

is the only savior you'll ever need. What do you say? You've

been given a choice by the very nature of your being able

to think for yourself. The enemy is large. The enemy is conniving. The enemy 

is manipulative. Just look at the greed in those bulging eyes. The bite

in those snarling smiles. The violence in those bejeweled fingers. But all is not 

lost because there is always you. A someone like no other. A free 

thinker. This is your invitation to the consciousness all around. This is your chance

to take off the uncomfortable helmet of hate and fear. They've been feeding 

you beautiful lies laced with poisonous attitudes, but that's all over now,

if you want it. You have to want it. You have to 

be it. No one else can do it for you. It can 

get lonely. It's not easy. But it feels good to be alive,

to be out of their device, to volunteer for life on your 

own terms. Bright and fair. Bright and fair. Oh, and, one more 

thing, it never ends, this fight to keep off the caps of nothing but 

despair. They'll march right up to you and clamp one on you

faster than you can run away. Just use your good sense:say "No, thanks."

Bonus poems:


by Darryl Price


Are we happy yet? Life without sorrow    is not life. Try again. Are we    happy yet? Killing yourself for pleasure after    pleasure turns out to be the opposite

    thing altogether, but you already knew that.    Try some more. Are we happy yet?    Love is not all you need, unless    you turn everything and that includes

 everyone    everywhere into love. Are you willing? Why    should I be the only one, when    I'm not the only one? Are we    happy yet? My choice is true hope

    I hope for everyone here, but you'll    say it's another con game made out    of pictures of hands because you can't    please them all. If it did I    wouldn't be

 doing it right. They want    a back flipping poet who is always    on their silly sides. I don't want    to be anyone's golden vampire. Check it    out. Are we happy

 yet? We've given    the children's keys to the kingdom to    the cloud people to hold until we    get back from the Crusades with our    bloody survivor stories to

 tell. Are we    happy yet? I smile into the mirror    of your eyes, but it doesn't work    out at all that way for me.    Are we happy yet? It's all good.    Try turning it off

 and on again.    I mean you've given everything you've wanted    to hide away to these unfeeling soul    sucking machines and now you want their    eternal thanks

 tattooed forever on your bank    statements like Christmas cards? No thanks. Are    we happy yet? Oh the magnificent bombs    didn't change a thing. Oh the carnival

    ride is over. Oh there's a big    shark in the river. Oh I think    we just may have misread the tea    leaf vibes after all. Oh there's a    feeling we seem to be missing

 in    the backs of our minds. Oh I    don't feel so good. But you said.    Are we happy yet? Oh you don't    love me anymore. I'll put my pants    back on. Oh she

 was the most    beautiful woman I ever played hooky with.    Oh you're kidnapping my laugh. Oh catch    me if you can. Are. We. Happy.    Yet? Oh give

 me a home where    the monkeys all roam and the sky    is a bowl of freshly cut fruit.    Put on a suit. Suit yourself. Zip    it. Are we there yet? Oh life    without

 sorrow is just not the brown    shoe lithium lick we need to extend    our battery life. It never was. It    can never be. Oh say can you    see me through all those

 sticking together    branches? Oh surely we're getting very near    the end, but possibly not. Oh please   there's not much more time to figure   it all out. Are we

 happy? Oh.   Life without sorrow will not help you   develop your telepathic compassion. Sometimes a new   approach is needed more than specific answers.  

Tennis Ball

by Darryl Price


Well there must be something to say that doesn't suck.

That doesn't remind. That won't back down. Rewind. There must

be something to say that gets in touch. That keeps

the plan alive. Yeah look at all those drop outs.

Look at all those chickens. There must be something to


say that I had no idea was available to me,

to us. I like that kind of surprise, don't you?

There must be something to say that isn't just swimming

up in a hurry to say a stupid goodbye. I'm

sick of goodbyes. People use them like ass wipes. There


must be something to say that takes a lot more

than the expected public leap. There must be something to

say that is at peace with itself, but still not

quite dead yet. Uh Oh here come all the fledgling

psychologists with their empty butterfly nets spouting their lovelorn advice


on the unsuspecting world like over eager doggies looking for

another toss of the already soaking tennis ball. You get

it. Well there must be something else besides all the

fuzzy nonsense. There has got to be something to say

that isn't just the echo of some nostalgic longing for


the good old days. Screw the good old days. There's

nobody here but us now. Get with the program and

help me to find something to say that is more

honest than the infinite ache all around us. I mean

it. There must be something to say that the gods


can actually hear in spite of the jealous stars. I didn't

say anything about your religion. Jesus, listen up. There's beauty

in the world that isn't applied through a test tube. There's

truth in the world that isn't found in a used book.

There's enough tears already to last us until the end


Of all time. Haven't we had enough of this? All I'm saying

is there must be something to say that can be

heard through all the constant babbling bullshit about nothing. Maybe

this isn't it. So? So what? I don't have to

explain my paintings to you. You probably wouldn't understand it


if I did. Feel what you feel. That's the closest

you'll get to an explanation. Just remember there must be

something to say that isn't just about falling asleep again.

There must be something to say that's like planting trees.

Something more than drivel. Would you like to come in? Please step inside.  


The sun, or whatever it is,
is falling closer. I don't think
that it's going away any
time soon. But here I am a man

still seeking your face on every
leaf. Like a forest of elegant
bulbs this makes it way better;
doesn't make it blow away. I

don't believe in being forbidden
to laugh or to cry. That's my
problem. There's plenty I don't understand,
but it doesn't stop me

from feeling everything on and
on until the end. The sun, or
whatever is shining, seems to
be debating what makes a dream

and what is awakening, but
my question is for you--will you
still be love's message to us when
tomorrow is the only day

left on earth? The sunshine, or the
inevitable squinting sky,
shifts its own pleasures like a
sleeping lion sometimes, but I

and I must allow for the shadows
of our workhorse atoms to
move mountains and swing the maid back
onto her silver saddle before

listing over into another
starry despair. We've a
purpose after all in the grand
clash of the majestic kitchens.