In the Court of the Heroine Sheikh

                    i. Summons

I speak to the bigamy
     of mind-altering authors,
     married to the pain, running
     off breathless ideas blind
     audiences make haste to
     praise, chartering flights, fighting
     dog-like over it, third-eye
     consciousness live-streamed for them,
     the faithless, lies monetized
     for the unwashed to take, snide
     platitudes swallowed up like
     thinking capsules, poor-man’s bait.

Taken in like jeans torn in
     a fit of proscribed heartbreak,
     I have been called to the court
     of the Heroine Sheikh, lost,
     having no clue what I should
     fake, a net worth with which to
     network, some invisible
     billions to fill a Louis
     Vuitton portmanteau, some
     fat zeroes to impregnate
     the entire thing, flooding it,
     that overpriced fucking case?

Or titles of poems no
     one will ever read? And not
     because they are too risqué
     or exquisite, but because
     they do not exist; oh, this
     ennui of living, this, my
     perpetual dilemma
     of impressing infidels
     who pilfer language, dim fools
     equating with litter their
     bone-licked scraps of that carcass,
     what was once literature.

Regurgitated verses
     fired off for those uni(n)formed
     pigs to pick over, digging
     my dirt as if filthy words
     were bargain bin purses, fat
     fingers poking through thinner
     wallets, rolling in doubt, I
     speak against those insecure
     pokes unable to bear my
     jaws, scofflaws typing out my
     quatrains and sonnets, prophets
     repurposing that daft shit.

                    ii. Sentencing

Where is my protection when
     my writing serves no other
     purpose than this, to replace
     the vapid voids of their heads,
     filling them in with riffs when
     a bullet’s better suited?
     Feathered tongues are the latest
     in tar-paper fashions, fags
     asking to be worn out by
     vapid factions who sell, past
     its expiry, their unrhymed
     passion, artists crashing from

     hash tag, playing an old game
     with new swagger, quoted and
     without sway, it is not in
     the doing, but in their too
     frequent saying, that vile words
     conjure from quiet death their
     silence into its loudest
     being, and violence takes
     on its believing; the crowds
     crying it is unfair need
     to turn off their faucets, stop
     leaking tears, and come off it.

Begin seeing that ink does
     not kill, but those who spill blood
     are those soulless types, online,
     likening the digital
     lives of their avatars to
     truer versions of who they
     are, personas killing off
     personalities, leading
     lights on, reconfiguring
     perception’s doors, leaving those
     burned in their flame wars, so-called,
     scarred, tattooing the beast’s mark

     not on their palms, but on wired
     fingertips, signing obscene,
     binary biases, right
     hooks pulling from heaven wings
     left for dead, brightest minds dimmed,
     electrifying latent
     guilt, patent opposition
     to inclusion really fear
     these basement-dwelling kids let
     manifest, posts showing them
     to be inarticulate,
     anonymous idiots.

You will understand why, then,
     I refuse to submit, to
     give in to their trends, waxing
     unsociable when they flaunt
     their media, all needing
     always, it seems, external
     validation, the roar of
     untamed strangers to lift them,
     my Heroine no angel,
     but in these end-times, she still
     knows how to handle better
     than any these poor devils.

From within some soot-softened
     hovel, I answer her call,
     across tall mountains, wastelands,
     junkyards, and far worse urban
     wilderness alone willing
     to travel, I reach her; my
     arms tremble uptown, crawling
     from out a soiled shirt, worn raw
     importing modesty from
     a more tolerant part of
     town, I grab thunder, having
     too long been down, and stick her.