Tuesday, September 7, 2010

taps

dj shock is in da house, yo!
whicky, whicky...

...the boom bop beat
went straight to our veins
from the turntable to our ears,
wild horses racing round
the chambers of our hearts,
boom bop de boom boom bop

we were gods,
immortal, immoral,
our solo cup fist raised
to Bacchus, and the rafters
of that basement
bah de bah boom bop
all fun and games
until someone dies
and they did---
boom ski de bop bop

slumped in the corner
drool dripping in
ooey gooey lines from
his lip to his shirt
boom bop de bop
party surrounding
him, unknowing
until the keg sighed
dry of dregs...
(record scratch---white noise)

shlup, shlup, shlup
flip flops stinking
on the floor from spills
they pealed those rigored lids
and saw no soul, sitting
in a puddle of piss and beer,
"the day the music died.
we'll be singin', bye bye...."

When I was in college, we used to have live music or a dj every Friday night. Our house would be packed. The year after I graduated, they threw a party and let someone through the door that was already too far gone. He found a corner and died, from alcohol poisoning, and they found him when they were cleaning up.

One Shot Wednesday, write a poem and come join us. Gates open at 5 pm.

128 comments:

Steven Anthony said...

OMG....haunting. You always hear of things like this, but when it hits so close to home...wow.

sad, haunting...

CM said...

"We were Gods"...isn't that what every college kid thinks?

So sad yet a reality. Something similar happened in my dorm a few floors down.

I could feel the beat of this poem.

Becky said...

Oh so very sad,but more of this goes on now everyday.My husband was in a band when we got married,I became so sick of the scene there, I havent been to a bar or club in such a long time.

The Bug said...

What a waste (says the teetotaler, sanctimoniously). You've really captured the spirit of the party goers very well.

Jinksy said...

A grisly tale indeed...

Cheryl said...

It's tough enough to read about these incidents but to actually be so close in space and time is completely heartwrenching.

Bonnie said...

Always sad to hear of tragedies like this ... such a waste.

Brian Miller said...

it is such a waste bonnie...and at that age (and perhaps older) we tend to think it could never happen to us or hit so close...

Sam Liu said...

This is a powerful and poignant poem, Brian. And tragic, desperately tragic. Such a waste of a young life.

drybottomgirl said...

It just doesn't need to happen...sigh.....

Mama Zen said...

I live in a college town, and we lost two in the frat houses a couple of years back. The University has really cracked down, but I doubt that it makes much difference.

Nessa said...

I remember parties like that. Truth be told, I'm surprised it didn't/doesn't happen more often.

Alexandra macias said...

that is a very tragic and unfortunate event
):)(:(

deb said...

brutal.
sad.
and with 3 kids in college right now.. frightening.

ananchorage said...

Your poem caught me by surprise after the title. Always, stereotypes with the song taps (played before my dad was buried in a Federal cemetery.)

Lots of alcohol related deaths where I live. It affects many age groups, just seems to be more of a tragedy with college aged.

Gloria

Claudia said...

oh my goodness - that is just horrible
made me think of what happened just a few weeks ago at the "love parade" in duisburg/germany.
there were too many people in a tunnel and some of them got trampled to death - and a few meters away the music was playing and the party was going on and for a long time, no one realized what happened.
this sent shock waves through our land

Daniel said...

Powerful piece today. Haunting my mind now after several reads.

5thsister said...

So sad that is all too common. I can tell you there have been many a Sunday morn when the alcohol poisonings come in to where I work...many don't make it.

Madame DeFarge said...

Grim story, but reminds me of so many student parties that I went to at uni. Glad I got it all out my system.

TechnoBabe said...

Unfortunate for college kids to go so wild.

betweenhearts75 said...

Sad the truth within this well written poetry. No one ever expects what could happen least of all those still in the mixture of mindful youth, invincible.
Amazingly depicted in your words Brian.
Here they just stand now in the roads expecting people to stop suddenly, go around them....some not so lucky either...
Well done! ~April

Helen said...

Gut-wrenching read ..

Candie Bracci said...

So sad.You talked about your past several times I remember,you have so much in common with my man.

Magpie said...

Wow...that is scary. To think that someone can die in a room full of people and no one notice. To be that alone.

senderupwords said...

As a onetime fratboy I can attest that this kind of stuff happens. Happened when I was in University, I think a Northeastern or Western if my memory serves. Nice One Shot. Love and Light, Sender

Tracy said...

Man, I don't know what is sadder - the fact that the guy died or that nobody knew until they started cleaning up.

Kim A. said...

To say I am grateful that my son finally graduated and is now working is an understatement. There are some things the mother of a frat brat shouldn't know.

♥namaste♥

Eva Gallant said...

wow. You captured the experience well.

anthonynorth said...

I often wonder how often I escaped my own personal tragedies in those youthful days.
Excellent words.

Carrie Burtt said...

Brian this is sad....young people always think they are invinsible...

lovelyannie79 said...

Your title is perefct...multi-faceted with the military Taps and a keg tap,

You honoured that boy by writing this poem, and I love how you wrote the beat.

wonder-full one shot!

One Stop - The Place For Poets, Writers & Artists said...

it really is so reflective of the college world. My daughter's best friend told me about listening to someone being killed in the alley below her room.

Always sad

You are all over One Shot
You have rocket powered blog wheels or something

ladynimue said...

i always wait to read your blog !! it always offers some unheard tale, some unsaid feelings, some unthought ideas .. amazing !!

Ed Pilolla said...

yeah, there was a haunting rhythm to this piece from the get-go. beer in, drool out. not good.

J. said...

As a man of music I especially liked how you closed this one - very clever Brian! Great post man,

Justin

Mighty M said...

I was rocking out for the first couple verses until I realized this was not a happy song.....So sad that this has to happen and has to continue to happen.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Whoa! That's scary.

jj

dustus said...

Tragic... this piece has a tactile quality to the lines, in addition to expressing through multiple senses. Great write

Monkey Man said...

kids away from parents the first time sometimes do dumb things. This one was tragic.

Barbara said...

My granddaughter went off to college this fall and she sent a text to tell me that the first week a girl got drunk, fell off the balcony and died. Not someone she knew and not someone going to school there, but a visitor. So sad. Perhaps a really sad, hard lesson learned the first week of school for the rest of the kids?

Frankly, when I think back on my youth, I sometimes wonder at myself.

lakeviewer said...

So much for youthful vigor. Life is ugly under all that fun.
You played it well, B.
The beat follows the music playing, until...

KB said...

I can hear the music thumping in my ears. Don't miss those days. Thankfully, my friends and I came out of those times in one piece.

signed...bkm said...

how sad is this for some college students parent...stupid is the word...i thank God everyday my kids are beyond this....bkm

Just Be Real said...

A bit of a flashback on this one. Blessings.

Tina said...

Oh wow. We've had too many of those incidents in CO. Your piece captured the tragedy and the false confidence of youth so well. So sad. Such a waste.

Liza said...

Certainly not what I was expecting when I started reading this.
Very sad, but a mighty good write.
Thanks for sharing.

Emmanuel Ibok said...

Wow...such a sad story emerging from a fun place...I like how you relive your memories in your works.

Susan Deborah said...

Sounds like a page out of the beat era!

Youth is always a surreal state in one's life. After that goes away, we feel wonderful about having crossed a milestone!

Hope you're well, B and so are all at home :)

Joy always,
Susan

Neva Flores said...

So many young think they are indestructible. You have penned this well.......

C.M. Jackson said...

how horrifying...you captured the party and the noise he may have heard as he was slipping away...excellent..c

Me said...

There are many times I look back at my younger days and marvel that I am here to tell the tale. Growing up was so very full of bad choices...It scares me so much as I watch my boys grow, to think that they might do things *half* so foolish...

The theme of this poem really got to me, and such a powerful contrast to the lighthearted "whicky whicky" (which was so well done, btw)...this is a new fave of yours, Brian.

Kate Hanley said...

It's amazing how you capture the power of youth in just a few simple words. Such a poignant lesson to be learned.

Kate Hanley said...

It's amazing how you capture the power of youth in just a few simple words. Such a poignant lesson to be learned.

blueviolet said...

It happens every year all over the place. I just hate how out of control it can get.

Wild Rose said...

Why did this make me sad and yet it came out feeling like Caribbean dance song? Brian you capture what happens to most college kids and it's not a pretty sight. Very powerful delivery you did~

otin said...

I never got to experience the college life so it is tough for me to imagine.

Kulio said...

I'm so glad it happened after you had graduated...but still, it must have sent shockwaves through you.

SuziCate said...

That is so sad. Liked the way you ended it with the song...I heard it last week.

Lori said...

Yes, very sad. Sadly, I was friends to some of these people that died doing the same stupid things I was doing. What is so sad is that even though many years have passed since then, it continues to happen. My heart breaks just reading this. XX

Bill Cook said...

Enjoy the pulse and rhythm of this. Not easy to do and do well. Solid. - Bill

Arts Web Show said...

Great poem.
At such an energetic pace.

G-Man said...

Typical Frat party from My era..
Great Poem Son...
You did good...

The Retired One said...

How awful, Brian...and you'd think with age, comes wisdom..but last year...they found my son-in-law's mother dead in her car, in her driveway....did an autopsy and found she had died of alcohol poisoning too...she was in her 50's.

ds said...

Love the rhythm of this, and the refs to Bacchus (nice touch, esp for college kids who bow to that god before all others--not to mention the whole frat thing), but oh so sad.

Timoteo said...

The casualties from my generation were all too common. Well done.

Help! Mama Remote... said...

woooo! How sad! I bet that was an everlasting effect on those that found him.

Beachanny said...

You might have snagged the ending of a poem I'm writing, but it was up for grabs and works really well here.
Strange sort of set of coincidences here; I was inspired to write villanelle by Dylan Thomas and Dylan Thomas pretty much died just like this only he staggered to a room upstairs beforehand. What a sad end for anyone.This poem makes the scene so vivid and visual. Well done and well written. Thanks, Gay

Cloudia said...

the beat goes on...






Aloha from Waikiki

Comfort Spiral

Glynn said...

I think you captured the tragedy and even the poignancy of accidental death. Good one, Brian.

Joshua Gray said...

I like all the musical emphases. I wrote a poem about the tragedy of Johnstown flood, and did the same sort of thing. I envisioned the story being told in a classical music structure, kind of the way Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture" was done, but more aligned with the standard rules of classical music. I took that idea and turned it into a poem. It ended up being eight pages, called "Sonata of Jognstown Flood in A Major."

Anyway, I got off on a tangent, I guess ultimately to tell you how I identified with your piece. Music and tragedy combined.

Jannie Funster said...

GOD, we had people die on the way home from parties, in accidents but no one died during. I can see how it stuck with you.

xo

Joshua Gray said...

I had a guy I knew die right in front of me in college. Not at a party, but who cares, right? I wrote a poem about it. August 2010 issue of Mipoesias.com if you want to check it out.

steveroni said...

Brian, you have really had some experiences in your short life.

It is just marvelous that we have a place to write our thoughts, memories, and whatever else. Blogs are real tension-relievers.

She Writes said...

Ohhhhh.............Oh. Oh no.

Bernie said...

Such a sad situation - he was somebody's son who probably still miss him so much to this day. Your writing is so special my friend...Hugs

The Crooked Tongue said...

Thank you for your comment! I am fine, just been busy. I'm hoping to publish somethin' soon.

I really enjoyed this unique poem and when I read the note at the end, I gasped. How terrible.:(

Cinner said...

Beautifully written, but oh so sad. be well.

adeeyoyo said...

Could so easily happen still today... That feeling of omnipotence, immortality and the beat, oh the beat... except it's more drugs than alcohol that's the danger now. How to get through to kids, hey... Well done, Brian!

adeeyoyo said...

Could so easily happen still today... That feeling of omnipotence, immortality and the beat, oh the beat... except it's more drugs than alcohol that's the danger now. How to get through to kids, hey... Well done, Brian!

Goofball said...

that's horrible :(

you don't need to get drunk to have an awesome party. The beats sounded fine to me.

Nancy said...

Wow. I'll bet I knew of a few that came awfully close.

Zuzana said...

That was so very sad... This happens a lot even here, you hear about young people that perish in this mindless way...
Very poignant post dear Brian,
xoxo

Katherine said...

This is so tragic..what a terrible loss. With youth comes a sense of indestructibility and the cursed "It won't happen to me syndrome" but sadly it does happen & it is sad!
A very haunting poem Brian.

ladyfi said...

Oh my goodness! Terrible terrible terrible.

sheila said...

Well, good morning! Thanks for the cheery wake up! lol. This is SOOOOOOOOOOO sad! With a kid in college this is a good reminder to have that 'talk' again.

slommler said...

What a terrible way to go! Dying all alone and no one noticing!! Sad...so sad!
You captured the irony of the situation so masterfully!
Hugs
SueAnn

Scott said...

it seems I've attended that party, maybe even been the life of it a time or two!

JStar said...

Yea, we think were invinciable at that age...Some of the things we did back then should of killed us...But some arent so lucky...I have never had an alcohol poising in my childhood....It was always a gun shot or car accident on my side of town. Still a youth's life is lost...A sad reality

Vicki Lane said...

What a wake up call!

Powerful piece. Your rhythms and onomatopoeia remind me of Vachel Lindsey's The Congo - which I once memorized, all 150 lines of.

Jill said...

Harsh. VERY harsh...and stupid. When we are young we feel invincible don't we? Not.

natalee said...

Oh Lord... I used to be at Keg parties all the time in College...I lived at a sorority house..I never thought of consequences you feel so immortal...I cant imagine how terrible they felt when they found that poor soul....

Lorraine said...

hautning indeed my gosh, every year, you write so well Brian, you should be a novelist, based on true stories,or not, your writing is excellent, you just bring out so many emotions

amritaghosh said...

sheez! that's hard-hitting and sad. it's always a thin line, huh? well written!

annell said...

That's a sad story. Young people think nothing can happen to them. And I don't think we will ever change that. That must really be sad for the parents. College just doesn't seem like a place to die.

Dulce said...

beating that is

great smile...

Myrna R. said...

How very sad. Your poem captures the sad and raw truth.

Jen said...

We all thought we were invincible at that age.

brokenpenwriter said...

Sadly, this happens every year in some town, too much taken, too late found. Your poem is beautifully crafted from the onotopoeia of the dj's turntable to the energy and devil-may-care of the kids' attitudes. Heartbreaking and so, so sad. Well Done

Eric Alder said...

Well, it was all fun and games there until the ending. Talk about slamming on the reality brakes! Great clincher, Brian!

The Empress said...

chills.

and scares me.

My son is 16.

Dear God.

Sandra Heska King said...

Oh my. :(

Chris G. said...

"We were gods..."

So often, in our youth, we think it...this is raw, and imbued with the power that only truth can be. I can see this, here at college, and I shudder at the image. You've captured the spirit, and held it in all its fearsome glory.

Wonderful, but haunting.

Raven said...

Oh, that is just horrible. Your poem depicts that horror well.

Donusho said...

didnt expect the ending. this is a true and raw poem which i admire because it captures the unwares of what was happening in the midst of misfortune. sad though. donusho.

John's comments said...

The innocent immortality of youth... Friend of mine, first day at Uni steps on to a road chatting, pauses because he thought he heard someone call his name and a car zooms by killing his colleague...Thanks for dropping by. My poem is here Hope your week goes well.

Kodjo Deynoo said...

Some RHYME I felt your flow, good work here

Deborah Ann said...

Oh, I like that "we were gods."

Very nicely written, a fun read!

the wid0w said...

damn chilling read

makes me feel kinda guilty fer all the partys bk in the day

L.L. Barkat said...

Goodness. Wow.

My very favorite line was "(record scratch---white noise)"

Kind of says it all.

JH said...

a tragic loss, vivid was the poem and the lesson...nice

gospelwriter said...

oh god... that poor soul. I remember how broken my former partner was when his barely teenaged son (whom his ex hadn't allowed him to see for years) died of alcohol poisoning - too sad that this happens.

Mona said...

that is pathetic and a pity too!

JennyMac said...

what a sad experience....I can't imagine being there when something like that happened.

BLOGitse said...

like watching S King movie...

Sh@s said...

Sad. You have captured well the party scene, i could imagine the scene, all the tapping and dancing.

ModernMom said...

It did take me back to those days!

Pete Marshall said...

a great piece my friend but what a tragic, sad waste..i reread it and it brought back some sad memories of people i have lost over the years though drink and worse..the drugs..very well written though and praise for that..cheers pete

PattiKen said...

Amazing piece, Brian. Much darker than your usual fare. I didn't see it coming, taken down the path of frivolity by the "boom bop de boom boom bop." Good one.

Desert Rose said...

what a striking piece Brian..sad but it happens,college days are still alive in my mind, yes..music beats in the lines..:)

kavisionz said...

Loved the beat to it, Brian!
But the story was too too sad...and to think that it was true!! HORRIFYING!
Why do certain persons do what they do? It's so saddening to see a life go wasted :(
Fun is one thing...yea, we all do that! But limit/control is another.. if only everyone understood that!
This poem can serve as a great message, B.. to many many potential addicts...
Keep up the great (and socially active) work, my dear friend...

heartspell said...

Tragic and no beat left. Great write about what happens on any given day even in the 21st century. Heartspell

Pat said...

Wow, what a sad, sad story. Powerful imagery.

Who Is Afraid of Alfred Hitchcock? said...

Hi! Brian...
I didn't know which way you where going with this poem.

I'am so glad that you explained it to me at the end of your poem what it was leading too.

But, to be totally honest I kind of, had a feeling when I reached this part in your poem...
..."slumped in the corner
drool dripping in..."


When will some people learn that you can die from consuming too much alcohol...On a person note and not to be judgmental, but I have never touched the...stuff!
Thanks,
DeeDee ;-D

patty said...

startling, sad. before they are old enough to know better. i wonder if that's what the next generation is saying about me right now?

Marla said...

Oh my goodness....so sad. This was always one of my warnings to my kids. Thank you God, they listened well enough.

RNSANE said...

It always scares me when I hear of the kids playing these darn drinking games where they can hardly stand up and drink the next drink! I know we were just as bad in my day. Your story is just as bad.

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mairmusic said...

Great crazy word mix-- you are fitting the feel to the event seamlessly.
http://mairmusic.wordpress.com/

mama-face said...

you rock. in all ways.