Archive for the Ben Rasnic Category

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.


Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on May 15, 2011 by Scot

Love has finally come to me
in the form of a deluxe box
of hot buttered popcorn
with an appropriate douche
of salt.

All of the ancient sex goddesses
from my fantasies have materialized
in creamy white morsels curiously sculpted
into the soft mounds
of corseted breasts.

It is intermission of the film classic
“The Blue Angel”
and my tongue maneuvers itself
inside the box as if it were making love
to Miss Marlene Dietrich.

Light and Dark: The Sleeping Forest by Ben Rasnic

Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on March 30, 2011 by Scot

After work,
you fill the emptiness
with Jim Beam. Hard
whiskey to feed
the slow burn inside……………

The animals come out at night—
feel their hot breath heaving inside you,
pulsing steel curtain eyes,
prowling the dark of your mind,
the headaches that won’t go away……..
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A Day in the Life (November, 1963) by Ben Rasnic

Posted in Ben Rasnic with tags on November 7, 2010 by Scot

A typical Friday for the fourth-grade,
just turned nine, just returning
from a recess of marbles and tag

when one of my classmate’s mother,
hooked on valium and “As the World Turns”
delivered the news to our classroom
that Walter Cronkite had just delivered
to the world—
“President Kennedy is dead”

And for a moment the world
seemed to freeze on its axis
and on the faces of my classmates,
white and puffy as cauliflower
with shocked red weeping eyes.

That’s when the Principal bolted in
helter skelter and ordered the familiar
fallout drill–cowering beneath
rickety wooden desks
as if that would shield us,

as if Russian-made nuclear-tipped
ballistic missiles were no more lethal
than water balloons or the paper wads
from rubber band sling shots
we loved to launch against each other,

the insanity of which
mirrored by the actions of a lone
gunman crouched from the 3rd floor window
of the Texas School Book Depository

or the shadowy figures lurking
under cover of gun smoke clouds
permanently grazing
the grassy knoll.