Archive for the Ben Rasnic Category

Foreign Policy by Ben Rasnic

Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on May 9, 2017 by Scot


A lunatic
is spraying nuclear missiles
over the South China Sea.

Meanwhile, the leader
of the free world
spends weekends spraying
Titleist golf balls

over manicured grounds
of his private
Country Club,

crying about fake news,
cheating on his scorecard.

Three poems by Ben Rasnic

Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on December 25, 2016 by Scot

Indian Summer

Late October
by the riverbank,
campfire flames dance
with blue and yellow headdresses
amid the smoky essence

of speared fish
resurrecting the spirit silhouette
of a great Cherokee Warrior Chief
from my ancient ancestry.

He joins us in our vision quest,
cracking jokes about
Andrew Jackson’s impotence,
whispering sun secrets
and drinking firewater.



Saturday Night Services

I methodically suck her toes
as she deliberately clips her fingernails
one by one,
“I can’t believe that you’re doing this”
she giggles
somewhat nervously quivers
just before shuddering,
then muttering soft strange sounds
and although she is not
what I would consider
a very religious person,
petitions the deity
not once, not twice,
but three times.

November 9, 2016
I just want to hop
a Norfolk Southern
& lose myself in the blur
of rail ties
and measured strobes
of sunlight filtering
lodgepole pines;
to time travel
through the ghost image
click and shutter sanctuary
of memory archives
& transport myself
beyond the realm
of the day’s sorry events;
from the mind numbing duplicity
from the blind hatred
of mob mentality
from the affirmation
of blissful ignorance
life’s tired absurdity.

Elegy for a Summer Evening, 1972 by Ben Rasnic

Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on August 8, 2014 by Scot

It was his custom to soak in the summer evening air
reclining on the front porch sipping Old Crow & Coca-cola.
Being the only son still living at home…
and feeling sorry for him as I always did,
I felt obligated to pull up a chair and join him,
privately slipping a thin sliver
of windowpane acid beneath my tongue .

Though strangers, the two of us bonded
through the slow passage of time
with the steady flow of rot gut whiskey
steadily eclipsing a steel perception
like a black cloud
and the windowpane opening and closing
in my mind like the wink of a blind horse
just in time to notice his features meld
into the iconic image that graced the label
of his prized amber glass vessel
now shattered
across the concrete porch floor
like a carnival mirror.

I lovingly gathered up the pieces
and placed them on the mantel
above the fireplace.

The Latest Edition by Ben Rasnic

Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on July 8, 2013 by Scot

before dawn,
is already old news
before it even hits
the fresh black print
of our driveway;

comes in handy
to swat the puppy
whenever he pees
on the new carpet.

Old Photographs Stare Like Death by Ben Rasnic

Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags , on March 24, 2012 by Scot

Old photographs stare like death
from the pages of a high school
yearbook that read as an obituary
for Youth.

It is midnight and I am glancing
through the gallery recalling the faces
of old friends and past lovers
and I touch them

as if I was touching Death.
I close the book as if
I were the sealing the lid
on a coffin.

Occupied by Ben Rasnic

Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on February 5, 2012 by Scot

We scrub our minds clean
as blank scrabble tiles,
attune our senses
to the numbing drone
of throbbing, repetitive drum beats.

Grunts and squeals can still be heard
emanating from the gilded canyons
of Wall Street
with each ticker tape fluctuation.

In the name of freedom
we have sacrificed our individuality,
vocabularies reduced
to hand lettered cardboard placards,
unsophisticated hand signals
& mic check chants

apparently oblivious to the inevitable truth
that change is just another name
for more of the same;
that whenever power changes hands,
the pigs will still be running the farm.

2011 Dog by Ben Rasnic

Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on June 26, 2011 by Scot

(after reading Ferlinghetti’s “Dog”)

The dog no longer trots
freely down the street
but in a smothering choke hold
from his master’s leather leash.

And what he sees
are not the things
he was bred to see,
riding in cars rather than chasing,
strapped into a safety harness, slobbering
on the upholstery & power windows.

The dog no longer trots
freely down the street
and what he sees
are not the things he was bred to see–

caged kennels
with concrete walkways,
high maintenance pooches
with matching sweaters and caps.

No longer does he explore
whatever avenues his nose points him toward;
no longer does he exude
the pronounced swagger of his forefathers
on the prowl for a piece of tail
down some seedy alleyway.

And if he barks at the moon,
they will camouflage barbiturates
in his doggy chow
or surgically remove his larynx
to comply with local nuisance laws.

Now he must endure
with shame and disgrace,
the image of his master on all fours
with metal scoop and plastic bag
to remove his once proud
public excretions.

And he must be thinking to himself
what other free thinkers
are thinking,
“What has happened to my America?”

and to those who prefer
to walk these streets with blinders on,
the dog raises his flea infested
left hind leg
in salute.