The Carnival

nashville-skyline

Light streaks upward
from the bottom of newly planted trees
reaching for the moon
falling well short

in the night of new Nashville
the ghosts of old have been paved over,
built on and forgotten
houses that owners can’t afford
rent that I can’t
it’s a goddamn travesty
for us with little money
in a valley where dreams once sprang
turned into a mecca of asphalt and falsified realities
of a soap opera TV show
more interested in money than story lines

it’s a carnival or a circus
where a bottle of Bud costs $8
and it’s fucking sad
it used to be so cool, I say,
trying not to sound like an old codger

it’ll come crashing down one day
and I’ll be far away
hoping my new city
doesn’t follow this path
hoping that I’ll be in a better position
to appreciate it
or fight against it

Exit/In

Speckled dots among the dim light,
the strongest from the bathroom
that says Men’s.

We are scattered and together and solitary
each song brings something that no one else feels the same way
we hope for someone that understands,
someone that feels something from it as well
and sings along to the songs we know.

The crowd ahead, hats and hairdos
melding in the heat of bodies stacked together
silly jokes, only we will get, from the microphone
we won’t be able to repeat them
or remember them
they’re not really funny anyway,
only because we were there.

Smells

Nose

the combined smells of a slowly filling room stay apart,
unsure of who to meet with
hesitant, for who is an ally?

someone farts a few feet ahead of us
they know it, we know it, but we only drift a few small steps away so we don’t lose our spot
not even a customary crop dust
no, I can see the person that farted
swaying side to side, talking to friends
just a few steps ahead
the arrogance of the scent
it’s a momentary concern
unpleasant, but momentary

the smells still distinct
the farter has made their mark, but they are just one of the many

as the music begins the crowd pushes closer to the stage and the smells begin to mingle
and become friends

with the swell of sound and beer cans tossed into trash bins, we squeeze closer
the room nearly full, the songs build upon one another and we sweat together, dancing, drinking, watching musicians play songs we love and some we will grow to love
b.o., burps, farts, dirty socks, sweat, beer
they blend as one as we lose track of them and ourselves
we stink, there is no doubt about that, but dammit, we stink together.