This side’s no longer wild

Belied and taken, brought
to underbelly alleys
wild enough to see the free
of stairwayed heavens
Holly’s sullied, desecrated,
flailing shaven failing
on the wilder side of falling.

Darlinged, one time too many
Candy’s lost her head, no longer
acting baby, being dead,
and Jackie’s ceased to walk
her talk, and seeing nightmares
in the darkest part of veins.

The streets are closed,
by the vigilance committee
the night-watch’s walking
on this side
a semi-automatic ready on his shoulder
calling “all is silent, none are wild”
but still behind the blinds,
the colored girls whisper:
doo doo doo doo doo doo doo …

Dog Woman by Paula Rego

Dog Woman by Paula Rego

Today we get a choice at toads from several old prompts selected by Margret at toads, and my choice fell on Lou Reed, but I guess it can be seen as a pastiche as well. I will link up to Poetry Pantry as well tomorrow.

September 24, 2016

33 responses to “This side’s no longer wild

  1. Dark and trippy. I had so many favorite lines, I’d just have to say, it’s a great think piece. I do wonder if the names are representative of real people/issues I just do not recognize. I think the section where you describe Holly as “failing on the wilder side of falling” struck the discordant chord bordering the almost-edge of harmony for me.

  2. and Jackie’s ceased to walk
    her talk, and seeing nightmares
    in the darkest part of veins.

    Seems there are many of them and all are portrayed finding their own way around lost in their own world!


  3. I am always amazed and impressed with the way you work a prompt into something wholly unexpected. I think you present a very insightful viewpoint of modernization where the wilder side of human nature has been restricted to such a point that we may believe true civilization has been achieved, but behind closed doors, the passions remain unabated.

    • PS. I love the play on sounds:
      flailing shaven failing
      on the wilder side of falling…

      It is super-stylish.

  4. Your insight and compassion for this topic never cease to amaze me. The reference to Stairway to Heaven – she got what she came for and a whole lot more than she bargained for … is clinched in ‘failing on the wilder side of falling’. I remember both songs. This poem also reminds a bit of Hedda Gabler, by Ibsen.

  5. Made me think of a Breugal nightmare – the wild side has a limited shelf life – in the end the fun stops and your liver shouts stop – and the chosen painting as always suitably chilling

  6. What an extraordinary poem Bjorn, gritty down to earth and reflective of the world few of us ever see and the treatment of certain professional women.

  7. Coming in this late and reading your reply to the first comment I listened to Lou Reed – Walk on the wild Side on You Tube. Having done that your poem, became to me as clear as morning, without mist, Luv your take on the prompt. haven’t written my response to that prompt as yet
    Wishing you a happy Sunday

    much love…

  8. This sounds like it’s about parenting. The dad seems fed up with the ways of his wild daughters, making one bad decision after another (boys, drugs, sneaking out). I think he’s cracking down, keeping them at home, and refusing to let them mess up their lives anymore. But they still keep pushing him.

    • P.S. I really like the idea of a “vigilance (veg[gie]-I-lance) committee.” Not only does this team of people keep the good vibes, and proper behavior, in check. But it also sets the example for the rest of the household … for “lancing veggies.” That makes me think that when a family is crumbling, maybe they’re all just hungry for attention. The first step might be to start having family dinners, just talking about their day, focusing on the good. When we eat together at night, my husband asks each of our girls to tell us about the highlight of their day. Then we play silly games together, laugh together, tease each other a little bit. It’s a special time we must carve out each day, a safe place, for connecting … and blocking out everything bad that happened earlier in the day.

  9. I really enjoyed this one, Bjorn. I’m afraid got a bit confused between the original post and the Play It Again one. I spent loads of time commenting and was surprised when I came back to the Play It Again post to see my poem wasn’t linked and to read posts I hadn’t seen before. I think it’s because I didn’t get much sleep worrying about my daughter who did the Shine Walk across London last night.

  10. Thank you, Bjorn. I have never gone beyond 1972 with this song (until last night when I penned mine, then all I did was tell a bit of the modern generation, calmed but still restless and roaming–and out of the big big city, in cars now). I sing it, listen to it, read the lyrics.
    Now you have added three more verses telling your version of their aging lives. Forty-four years ago Reed was glamorizing the dark (side), you have gone even darker, glamour is gone. Back then I could have run away and joined them, now I’m sure glad I didn’t.
    And the colored girls say,
    “Doo do doo do doo do do doo…”


  11. I really like where you took the prompt, Bjorn. This is dark and pastiche in perhaps a whole new way. Being a fan of the song, I really liked how you chose to keep the characters and update them. Viva la

  12. The current scenario in most parts of the world, the dark alleys ….but the way you have brought them out, speaks of their plight. lovely poem

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