Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Bleeding From Our Eyes: a poem

Last night, I was at Ralphs with my friend Steve,
picking up some late night dinner.
I decided upon some pre-packaged sushi.
At first, I grabbed some spicy tuna rolls, 
but quickly remembered the nuclear meltdown
in Fukushima, Japan, and how there are rumors
that all the world's tuna is now radioactive.

"If you ate that," said Steve, "You might start bleeding
from your eyes."

So I grabbed a California roll instead,
which has imitation crab meat.
I haven't heard anything about 
imitation crabs being radioactive,
so, based on this ignorance,
I go ahead and eat it for dinner.

Back at my house, I am eating 
my seafood, which may or may not be radioactive,
and Steve is eating hummus and carrot chips,
and Holly is eating two different grapefruits:
one organic and one GMO.
She and Steve are trying to tell the difference
between the two.
The GMO grapefruit looks nicer,
but the organic one tastes better.

And then I go to bed, and as I fall asleep,
I watch a documentary about Dennis Rodman
visiting North Korea, and meeting Kim Jong Un,
and then I watch The Expendables 2, and 
am horrified at the number of Nepalese people
killed by The Expendables just to save the life
of one Chinese billionaire and Arnold Schwartzneggar.

I know I'm supposed to be rooting for The Expendables,
but instead I find myself rooting for the Nepalese,
even if they are supposedly warlords.
The Expendables seem more like warlords to me,
especially because they manage to speak
clever one-liners and high-five each other, 
as they riddle the bodies
of hundreds of Nepalese people with bullets.

Painted on the side of one of The Expendables'
vehicles are the words, "Shock and Awe."

And then I fall asleep and dream about 
nuclear power and space travel.
It's hard to remember dreams,
but here are some fragments:

I am in what may or may not be
North Korea and everyone is ecstatic
because they've just successfully tested a 
nuclear bomb in the ocean, 
but what they don't realize is that 
the fallout from the nuclear test
is literally blowing back in their faces.
As I take a shower in a North Korean hotel,
I wipe my nose and eyes, and notice 
blood on my hands.

I am in a bare room, holding
a tiny nuclear reactor,
so tiny that it fits in the palm of 
my hand.  I don't know why I'm holding it.
All I know is that I can't put it down or
it will melt down and explode,
so I'm just holding this thing
that I know is killing me, and I don't know 
what to do with it.
I start bleeding from my eyes.

Over a loudspeaker, comes the voice
of Robert Oppenheimer saying over and over:
"Now I am become death.
the destroyer of worlds."

I am on a mission of salvation,
driving a nuclear-powered space ship
to one of the moons of Mars
to find some Helium-3, 
which could solve the earth's 
energy crisis.
The slightest miscalculation 
could prove disastrous.
I miscalculate my course, and 
die alone in space,
bleeding from my eyes.

And suddenly I am in heaven,
or a planetarium, surrounded
by planets and stars,
watching a very old woman
holding the earth in her hands,
and it is glowing a radioactive green,
and there is blood coming from the 
old woman's eyes.  Blood and water.

And then I wake up and rub my eyes,
half expecting to find blood 
on my hands, 
but there are only a few sleep boogers.
My eyes are not bleeding.
Not yet.

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