Home is where the Green Hornet comic is, where the older girl takes me into the closet, hair dry and itchy in my face, rubbing me like a rag doll with puffed up parts.
Where I furtively audiotape mom and dad’s parties from behind the couch. Where I shove Bibles beneath my bed as my brother undergoes treatment and my mom cries next to the washing machine, tears mashed up on concrete.
Childhood. Rock’n'roll. Nickels falling into the jukebox purchased from the Beloit College fraternity. Dad’s propped it into the corner.
“I Can’t Get No … Satisfaction.”
Home is where I suck on Coke bottles, where I find my dad’s photocopied articles about the death of grandma.
Where I let Bob Dylan drain me, where DOA tells me “No god no state no lies…”
Don’t treat me like a dead butterfly.
Gimme gimmee shock treatment.
My brother buys the album at the dust-strewn house, where the man with a million skin tags works the desk.
I am cutting up my toys with a machete.
The Dead Kennedys pound my head.
I am leaving you.
I have left you.
Look at me.
Peter Case writes:
“Yeah or take some Burroughs or some DOA, some Dead Kennedys, man that shit straighten out your rod fix your leg a lot better than McLuhan, who after all is just asking you to THINK about what’s happening…”
“Take some McLuhan man” here and the graveyard eyes and punk rock society as victim, why not “take some DKs some Ramones that’ll straighten you right out man, shit look what it did for all those Orange County kids’’ you could whisper some Blake to the two-kids- and-no-future man, how about some Patti Smith? None of it helps if the idea is that the inevitability is all, laissez-faire sprees have taken everything, yr fucked.
No future is a state of mind, not an objective fact for anyone, no matter how sorry they or you are. There’s no situation that’s so bad it can’t be turned around on some major level.
You ‘lean over all musty and kink haired’ hey bet McLuhan never smelled like that…
That would really be something, like psychoanalysis, the stuff Burroughs was trying to teach Ginsberg and Kerouac about. Maybe they will sell that in grocery stores soon, but I doubt it, they just give you a pill.
“There is no inevitability as long as there is a willingness to contemplate what’s happening.” “You got a dome: use it.” -Buckminster Fuller to George Russell
Home is where the confusion reigns, home is where my father mops the floor with me for asking ‘why?’ home is where ‘I can still kick your ass’ meets ‘take another step and I’ll bash your fucking head in’
a kid on the corner pulled a knife on me I bashed his face in a month or so later, two brothers who lived near the corner chased me down and beat the crap out of me in the snow, I had crossed the street diagonally in front of their house they said I was ‘crossing the red of the duck,’ the duck was me they said… the red was my blood.
home is the horrors of the local high school, swimming bare ass naked with a hundred other boys at 8 am on a winter’s morning in front of Viet Nam vet gym teachers who hit us with rulers ‘bend over and crack a smile’
home where just walking across town on an autumn night was risking a beating from cruising ‘fraternity brothers,’ as the gangs of Buffalo were called. A ‘fraternity’ was busted with machine guns and a bazooka up in the local park.
home is where confusion reigns and I got down on my knees and begged my poor parents for help from my madness ‘til I realized there wasn’t gonna be no help and immediately I stopped crying.
home terrified to go to the big school afraid I was gonna get stomped well I did get stomped but it wasn’t so bad and THAT was a life lesson
home I moved out the cops used to shake me down they wanted to get me home being called ‘queer’ everyday by passing car assholes etc for my long hair home on the highway, man, for years and years.
home two doors down World War I vet Howard lived drank a case of beer a day, his brother Lee a bookie drove Cadillac, and I’d go hang with Howard he’d always hear my mother calling
home me and my best friend one night jumped by a mob of guys who made us fight each other or they’d kick our asses, I didn’t want to do it so they formed a circle around us and screamed to start fighting I wasn’t gonna hit my pal, but he caved and punched me right in the face, this scene polled on and on I hated those kids, they hung a kid upside down in the garage said he was a ‘jew’, used to piss out of trees on us little kids the ring leader of those turds is now a baptist preacher somewhere, no lie.
home is where my friends Eric, Chris, Pete, Marianne, Mike, Jim, and Mark all committed suicide.
Joe ran away to Toronto at 12 was gone 6 months Jesse was gone a year or more
home is where I had a window into the world, called a record player Bob Dylan never drained me, he was a warrior, and passed on his energy and knowledge to anyone what wanted it
home is where my mother wept as Bobby was assassinated, I woke up to her tears
home is where she betrayed me to my father who was gonna kick my ass again but I fled into the night, hearing the train whistle of the westbound midnight freight, and knew I would never go back
home is where I lost my depth perception after too much lsd years later I thought the Matrix was a documentary about my teenage mental state
home one night in the dark dark night (nights could be very dark there no kidding and still) 4 guys from the John Birch Society came and stood across the street in the shadows, I knew who one of them was a guy named Wilson, “hey Case c’mere,” they were on a hate mission, I was tripping my dad was in the house tho’ so I didn’t want to go back in there… but I did and he wanted to smell my breath. something was happening but he didn’t know what it was, and neither did I.
so I split home moved in with 6 guys into a green dump by the dead lake (the lake killed by Bethlehem Steel up around the bend spewing smoke and filth a couple miles away) had a band called Pig Nation. we played LOUD 3 chord rock & roll when long hair got too popular
I cut off mine super short wore old jeans stomped around in the rain and snow walked on the frozen lake in a pair of big black motorcycle boots that I got somewhere and me and Jesse started calling ourselves punks. this was 1970.
I had a bad local reputation was picked up by the cops for questioning about an unexplained grand larceny, mothers wouldn’t let me in the yard to hang with their grown up offspring, and I was banned from seeing Raven by her Doctor father, guess he knew what was what.
but home is where we had our laughs, got drunk on hard cider, me and Jesse turned all the furniture upside down, our housemates came home and didn’t appreciate it, guess they weren’t young enough, angry enough, fucked enough to see the humor.
so, a little while after that I hit the road for good.
“and you ask why I don’t live here? honey i can’t believe that you don’t move” - b. dylan 1965