“A Minute After Midnight” by Jake Rosendale


A plague blew up from Hollywood
masked in glitter and plastic,
swallowed readily by
them on the lines.

We coughed and hacked,
sick and decrepit marred by sores,
on our palms, on our faces.
Varicose veins covered our legs and arms,
but still we demanded more.

The wind blew from
Seattle to St. Petersburg,
Bali to Bejing.
We became like stray dogs,
fawning over them who didn't care
we existed.

Soon those who could, stood
and departed
flew away on gold and power
with the promise that they
would make us a better life.

What remained of Tinseltown
came to realize that every soul that could
would still swallow.

The gilded wind never stopped.

Then from the ocean and the air
those who were cast off returned
to say few words.
They repelled the glitter air
with soft whispers and a pale mirror
that showed simple truths to those who could
still crawl.

Few could.

Now it's a minute after midnight.
All the graves have been
dug and the dirges all sung.
There's been a new birth,
with blood and pain but the profound
joy and sadness that comes with unbridled possibility.

Gone are Creamsicile Summers and Hot Chocolate winters.

This is a world where the constellations are
the space between the stars.

But Dawn carries agony and ecstasy
on her slender shoulders,
there are already flecks of gold in the air.

But no man alive can say there is a world
worth having except for this one,
now at a minute after midnight.