Poems by Lee Bob Black


Lee Bob Black reading some of his poems (videos)

Lee Bob Black reading poems and songs written by others (videos), such as Corey Taylor, Charles Bukowski, Allen Ginsberg, and Ani DiFranco.

Marilyn Manson: I am the third and final beast (video)

Nelson Mandela: I Am Prepared To Die (video)

Five poems for Sonhos Intensivos (Intense Dreams)



My collections ...
  • Behind The Shelter Of That Dark, Mysterious Name (Poems 1991-1994)
  • You’re Not The Intellectual I Thought You Were (Poems 1995)
  • I Covered All My Mirrors Today, In The Name Of Self-Discovery (Poems 1996)
  • Random Acts Of Senseless Writing (Poems 1997-1998)
  • no innuendo here (Selected Poems 1991-1997) (artwork by Damon Kowarsky)
  • No Longer 25 – The Sonja Poems (Selected Poems 1999)
  • Destined For Greatness Or Obscurity, or, It Should Always Rain At Funerals (Poems 1999)
  • My Dear-Sons-Of-Bitches / IoftheStorm (Poems 2000-2002)
  • Step Into Your Shadow Self (Poems 2003-2005)
  • Good Ideas Always Pop Into My Head When I’m Showering (Poems 2006-2009)

Following are selections from my collections ...


You’re Not The Intellectual I Thought You Were (Poems 1995)



my condolences

so, god, placed, commas, between, each, of, your, grandma’s, breaths,
and, said, to, her, “it’s nearly time for you to say good-bye”

so; god; placed; semi-colons; between; your; grandma’s; nights; and; days;
and; said; to; you; “she may not wake”

so. god. placed. a. full. stop. at. the. end. of. your. grandma’s. life.
and. said. to. her. “it’s time to die”

so! god! placed! exclamation! marks! after! each! memory! of! her!
and! said! to! you! “a smile is the best alibi”

so? god? placed? question? marks? at? the? end? of? your? grandma’s? death?
and? said? to? all? “why did this happen?
for god’s sake?”



I Want To Fruit You

I want to jump your bananas and do you berry-style
I want to give you multiple oranges and make you cucumber like Niagra Falls
I want you to lick my watermelons and finger my strawberry
I want you to squeal like a peach and love me as if there’s no more tomatoes



The Mermaid

I.

Will you hold me to that which I’ve done,
Those pieces of my past which I deplore?
Will you hold them to my head like a gun
That loves me not nor for me care?
Will you swim through the door
That you shun?
Will you dare?

Will you kiss me, princess of the sea,
Love me to the depths of your heart?
Will you kiss the future with me,
Take my hand for the balance of forever?
Will you be my sweetheart,
My lady,
My lover?

II.

Lovelier than thou,
Coming, coming now.
Comes the mermaid to my plea.

From the deep, fish weep,
From a time forgotten,
Comes Neptune’s daughter,
Coming, coming now.
Comes the mermaid to my plea.

Through the angry sea of destiny,
Through the legend of a sailor’s friend,
Comes the mermaid,
Comes the mermaid to my plea.

She, mysterious.
She, goddess.
She comes.

Lovelier than thou,
Coming, coming now.
Comes the mermaid to me, to my vow.



I Covered All My Mirrors Today, In The Name Of Self-Discovery (Poems 1996)



The Last Will And Testament Of Lee Bob Black

I leave my flesh and bones to one of those research organisations
with the "don't take your body to heaven,
heaven knows we need it here" bumper stickers,
or to one of those universities with medical students who have 'practical' work
that entails slicing and dicing corpses and hurling
the remains
of grandmas and grandpas at each other when the teacher isn't looking.

You can all squabble amongst yourselves over
my diaries, photo albums, Metallica CDs, poems,
queen-size futon and king-size doona, large-print Melways,
painting of hovering naked woman, empty wine rack,
purple/black/blue roller blades and my favourite head kickers.



like when your parents

ask you to sit down
to tell you something
that needs for you to
be sitting like they're
divorcing or they
want to move away
from your friends or
your grandparents
have died or even
something else, worse

and then before going
to beddy-byes you turn
the television off and
touch the screen and
static electricity moves
through your palms and
you monotonously switch
the tv on and off just
to feel the sensation

and you have one of
those bizarre moments
of clarity like when
you can actually see
music coming from
your speakers
and you say aloud
to the super heroes
on your wallpaper that
you hope it snows
tomorrow



Every Twenty-Eight Days

When I'm pre-menstrual:
I'm horny and I'll beg and beg and beg - I'll take everything I can get;
I have conflicting and confusing feelings - I'll take everything personally;
My insides prepare for
World war three ...

... every twenty-eight days. Emotional maze. Ovulating. Patience abating.
Males can't empathise. They don't bleed between the thighs.

When I'm menstrual:
I don't think with my head - I think with my hormones;
I'm irrational and irritable - I think I'm entitled to be;
And by the way, you can
Love me or leave me ...

... every twenty-eight days. Stomach ablaze. Abdomen pains. When it flows it rains.
Males can't empathise. They don't bleed between the thighs.



Random Acts Of Senseless Writing (Poems 1997 & 1998)



REFLE C TI ON

if I were to give birth to a

DEF OR ME D
P AR APLEG IC

or a girl with

'PA L SY

or a

M ENTA LLY
R ETA RDE D

boy

I don't know if I could keep it ...;

my son
my daughter
not mine

it would be a reflection upon me,
if I gave the newborn up

it would be a reflection upon me,
if I raised it, loved it



They're All Pink Inside

The old and raw mothers
The young and experienced daughters

The ones with purple eyes
The haters of men

The ambitious liars
The affluent, lost ones
The poets

Strip them down
Sit them down
on a hard, wooden chair

Get on your knees
Open their knees
and ...

pink pink pink pink pink pink



Too

"can I be honest with you?
...
can I speak my mind?...
I think, Lee,
that you

try too hard to be cool

you can't relax
or go with the flow."

what do I do?:
not walk tall,
not strive,
not wish to stand out,
thank him for his candid observation...,

be someone
else?

and what should I think
when
another
friend,
someone I've done
everything with
(except swap spit with)
backs up this damning insight
into the perceived/real me
with the remark
that even some of our
close friends
think that I love myself
too
much?



7

I enter the first heaven and
eavesdrop on Adam exalting Seven (the movie) and how
the seven deadly sins are precisely mankind's truest desires.
Eve is being rather womanly (go figure)
and just can't get it through Adam's thick skull that humankind should live
as per the seven virtues.
and I know deep, deep, deep down I
favour the sin of pride to the virtue of charity,
lust to justice,
sloth to temperance and
so on.
and anyway neither notice me, so I move on.

I enter the second heaven and
listen to Jesus talking aloud to himself over a café latte and a ciggie.
he's dissecting the logistics of the seven days of Creation and
mumbles (once again, to himself) that if there was an eighth he'd have put money on Dad going fishing.
needless to say, JC pays me no credence,
and even though I'm not the first person to be cold-shouldered by the Son of God,
I'm harbouring a hunch he's singled me out.
and when someone like that has it in for you, you move on.

I enter the third heaven and
the Angel of Death is writing in his book the names of newborns
and blotting out those of the newly dead.
Azrael feels my presence
but can't look up and can't chat
because a ferry has just gone down off the coast of Madagascar and
I want to tell his deaf ears that he should invest in a Dell laptop with Microsoft Word 97
but realise that although technology usually is the (albeit cliché) answer,
in this case it is not, so I move on.

I enter the fourth heaven and
the Angel of Tears is a blubbering mess, shedding ceaseless tears for the sins of man (and wo-man).
I want to throw him a life-jacket
but he's burdened by all our filthy ways
and besides he wouldn't believe that it's the seven heavenly bodies which
steer our collective destinies, not our free will.
so, while recognising that sharing pain is not always a successful way of reducing it,
I remain bitter that I can't lift the weight of the world from his shoulders, and I move on.

I enter the fifth heaven and
the Avenging Angel is evaluating which of the remaining Seven Wonders of the World
should be the next to turn to dust.
he's got Stonehenge and the Coliseum of Rome in his sights
and I've got no time for angels who downsize our tourists attractions, so I move on.

I enter the sixth heaven and
Moses is trying to sell an idea to the Guardian Angel of Heaven and Earth
that existence-as-we-know-it would be heaps better off (his words) if
rather than having different languages, we have only one and that
rather than having seven seas, we have just one
because then each of us would be drowning in the same ignorance -
rather than incongruent ignorances.
and I think it's much of a muchness and, wrapped in total confusion,
which is a necessary ingredient for change, I move on.

I enter the seventh heaven and
I'm the first mere mortal to stand in the Abode of God and
each inhabitant is bigger than the earth
and has 70,000 heads,
each head 70,000 faces,
each face 70,000 mouths,
each mouth 70,000 tongues,
and each tongue speaks 70,000 languages,
all forever chanting praises of the Most High.
and I can't hear myself think
and I'm developing one capacious headache
and I need my sunnies 'cause divine light's everywhere
and I'm weary like I've just summitted Everest without supplementary oxygen
and is God me?
and the answer is in the question, but life is an un-answerable question,
so instead of moving on I squat right there and reflect.



Destined For Greatness Or Obscurity, or, It Should Always Rain At Funerals (Poems 1999)



Isolate, Intoxicate, Infiltrate

Subject them to subliminal sexual messages.
Baffle their brilliance with your bullshit.
Lull them into a false sense of security.
Remind them that the carnal instinct is a muscle -
The more you use it and let it rule you,
the stronger it becomes.
Feed their egos.
Tell them that the rule is MEN ARE SWINE.
Then demonstrate that
You are the exception to the rule.



my advice to you is to lose yourself to find yourself

meditate the ache away
let things go
take time
shed narcissism
give credence
absorb sun-rays
crave not possessions or luxury
water understanding
share smiles
build inner self, foster inner activity
act on good omens
cleanse your psyche
envelope yourself in inventiveness
develop imagination and aliveness
help
cultivate a culture of sharing and sacrificing
penetrate the surface and grasp reality
recreate your own creativity
bathe in generosity
search for spiritual wealth
dream
block ego from blocking you
dance on the inside
dabble with genius
serve the beautiful
unlearn greed and power
trust your heart
live lives within your life
be one
be realistically idealistic
be holistic
be esoteric
be eclectic
be eccentric
be content
be tolerant
be



The urge to shoot down planes

A
sticker
on her bedroom door reads:
"Q: if this is the question, then what is the answer?
A: if this is the answer, then what is the question?"

Confused, I enter

Clothes litter the floor - she
steps daintily between them
whilst
I stomp heavily with contempt on them

She says she intends to
name her
daughters
Strawberry
and
Cream

We live surrounded by generalisations and stereotypes and
like an iron lung it dawns on me that she fits no
helpful
societal moulds

The next moment
her body is one huge violent mouth
and at a million words a second
she's shouting
"lions have been known to do away with cubs in their pride
so they can have sex with the
lionesses!"
and
"if you want to make a civilisation extinct,
you only have to kill all of the
women!"
and
she convinces me that I also hate men!
... But I can't find an
equal-opposite word
to misogyny

She's had her fringe cut and coloured
so that
red hair-horns
are poking out of her head
like blood-stained daggers and
now I'm really
freaking
out
as if I'm
caught in the headlights of
a
tsunami



My Dear-Sons-Of-Bitches / IoftheStorm (Poems 2000 & 2001)



Manhattansexypoem 3

it's okay for her to flash
her red undies to me, here in Central Park

the frisbeeists and hackey-sakers
friz and hack their sport-art, here

Starbucks cappuccino capitalism
is disregarded as
sneaky beer-vendors sneak
their goods amongst us;
"ice-cold Heineken beer, here"

later, I'm not thinking about
how the nude is the most challenging genre
as we snap
… photos of fellatio
… photos of slapping butts
… photos of her request "I want you
inside me,
behind me"

if we'd had a camcorder
we'd have captured
her
yelling "what's my name?!" and
me
- thankfully, surprisingly -
remembering it at that instant where
vulnerability is limitless



Manhattansexypoem 2

she walks in and chooses me
I'm the one she's taking home
thank you Lord for meat markets
thank you Lord for the foibles and follies of human nature

she tells me her instincts tell her
I'm all the rage in bed
"sometimes, sometimes not" I reveal, feeling
like that guy who plays at being impotent

she proclaims a necessity for honesty and
scorns courting games
- so I say "I'm having casual sex already in New York,
but honestly, I'd still fancy sleeping with you"
"no games?"
"no games"

she makes me want to poetise during sex
and, thinking of my 3 passions:
sex, writing, and writing about sex,
I ask "have you ever made it with a poet?"

Lenny Kravitz is infusing the mood
as I'm a cat clawing and turning on my master's lap, trying to get comfortable

she speaks into the microphone,
pausing to ask "what if hokie pokie is what it's all about?"

we're watched by telescopes in near-by apartments
as I push the out-of-control-button

she's giving off a sensuality that could stop armies

but I don't care

she's pleading now

Friedrich maintained that power over oneself is always
better
than power over others

but I don't care

she's bouncing now



Manhattansexypoem 1

at the Guggenheim she says
that René Magritte's The Lovers
(you know that surrealist painting of a man and woman with
white hoods hiding their faces?)
is how most people fuk,
as if the act must be an act of concealment,
fuking cloaked by darkness,
fuking riddled with shyness

so we mirror-sex it to distance ourselves
from "them", perhaps from ourselves

it's theatrical, but it isn't theatre

it's pornography, but not urban smut

it's using a feather, but not the whole chicken

undeniably, sex with a view is better than sex with no view



Nudism / Leeism

it's better to be nude
nudity is a language
food tastes tastier nude, especially peanut butter
nude dancing is the only form of dancing
being nude is being true to yourself
hold long meaningful conversations nude
hold trite meaningless conversations nude
animals, under their fur and feathers, are nude; we are animals pretending to be humans
philosophy is a nude mind
to be nude, wholly nude and nothing but nude, now that's luxury
say the word nude while you're nude - it feels yummy
eroticism and sparkism are nonsense without nudism
things are meant to dangle and flap when nude
nudeness and quality are synonymous
we seek the nude
you have never been anywhere unless you've been there nude



I Must Not Mistake Love For Want Of Love

I am smack bang in the middle of it
Everyone is someone else
Horns beep less
Architecture is new
The air … is new
No retreat, I've burnt my bridges, I am smack bang in the middle of it now
The gloves are off, my guard is down
I am smack bang in the middle of it now
All my Big Choices are whimsical
or made on one millionth of all the info
but I'm not feeling homesick
and I'm not feeling alone
I am smack bang in the middle of it
Burning
Transforming into a hermit, into
the person I must be
Great writers go to great pains, they say
I say, I'm now smack bang
in the middle of it
and I'm not going to blandly make
the most of it,
I intend to
search endlessly
love hopelessly
and
Live with abandon



Good Ideas Always Pop Into My Head When I'm Showering (Poems 2006-2009)



The Devil interprets art with a sincerity that God lacks

A Christian wears a “Jesus is coming, look busy” t-shirt
 
A Muslin wears a “My God is more vengeful than your God” t-shirt

A Jew wears a “It’s all Hebrew to me” t-shirt

A Buddhist wears a “God is listening, use big words” t-shirt. 

An agnostic wears a “The Religious Fence, get on it” t-shirt

A bright wears a “I only disbelieve in one more god than you do” t-shirt