Body Politic

Body Politic by Jr. James

If certain current events turn your stomach, this one’s for you.

To see your country descend into astonishing, dismaying levels of corruption, hatred, and racism; to see an army of smug lower-case wannabe bullies defend the indefensible actions of an upper-case Bully; to see attacks on immigrants, on the free press, on the environment and on the rule of law, all to bolster a money-grabbing con; to see all this and more, on a daily basis, is to feel angry, betrayed, confused . . . and sick. So a body metaphor suggests itself to a poet.

Talked this one’s chorus into the mic first, then used the DNA method to set a tempo, bass line and rhythm track.

Kate Tempest was a key inspiration, as were the The Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy. And James Brown, of course, is the wise man reference for the “money won’t change you” line.

Here you have it: poetry to make you puke. Ha haaaaa haaa!

Body Politic
What's happening to my body
Is this a disease,
Or am I just sick?

When I was just a baby, a few days old
Had to get a blood transfusion, that was the Constitution
And then as a teen of 18 or 12 I caught a Canadian’s cold
And in a fistfight suffered a minor contusion
Then in a tougher fight, got hit by cousins’ cannonball crossfire
I caught typhoid, dysentery
and pneumonia
And nearly had to get an amputation
But the army doctor didn’t know to look for cancer
And a nasty tumor metastasized, JimCrowanoma

Still a young man,
My eyes and lungs got burned by chlorine and mustard gas
I had blisters oozing yellow pus
Pearl Harbor was a hit to the gut, blood everywhere, another transfusion
And Korea and Vietnam nearly took me out
And probably I never healed properly
But then I got complacent
Quit going for my annual checkup
Thought I was invincible

Now something’s eating at me from within
And I’m doubled over in agony
The only time I invoke Jesus
Paying for my hypocrisy and paying twice for my sins, no doubt
A wise man once said that money won’t change you
But time will take you out
Problem is, money did change me
And time might be running out

Nothing humorous about these humors
Blood and phlegm and bile, and gall, the gall!
Now feel like I’ve caught some nasty bug
Should’ve worn a mask like Michael I guess
Feel like I have orange soda instead of blood
Orange soda mixed with undigested fast food beef
Clogging my arteries, fogging my brain
I should have the strength of a teen
Instead I’m ready for the morgue

What’s happening to my body

Look people, this body politic was once young, strong, resilient
It wasn’t perfect, and sometimes there was blood in our e. pluribus urine
But now a steady diet of Fox and mountain bluebird
Is rotting us, choking us, killing us
We haven’t been eating our vegetables
It’s suicide by Diet Cokes and Big Macs,
Bigotry and greed, deception and misdirection
We’ve got brain disease, senatorial septicemia
We’ve got heart disease, coronary racism and arrythmia
Who’s going to rush us to the ER?
And what happens if I get pregnant?

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