Daily Archives: May 2, 2004

My Generation Waits

They do not call us Boomers,
born too late to wear that name,
and Generation X we’re not
having slipped into life a bit too soon

Each generation bides its time
Seeking its voice and words to say
But in the waiting we seem stuck
Adrift in some self-wrought malaise

The roll of my peers, so much caught up
in decades outside our recall —

the sixties, that we barely saw

the seventies, our childhood strife

the eighties, when we came of age,
barely surviving the complaisance of greed

the nineties, that we’d lief forget

And in the absence of great cause,
we manufacture strife and angst
to disenfranchise our own selves,
disown our own, and silent, sleep

While other generations’ seers
and sages, poets, pens now silent, lost
await rebirth among our ranks

I call them out and wonder why
they do not answer, are not found:

Faulkner, Cummings, Hesse, Frost
Williams, Roethke, Breton, Plath
Lewis, Huxley, Sanburg, Hughes
Cassady, Steinbeck, Fleming, White
Eliot, Cocteau, O’Connor, Maugham

must you all wait, in restless graves,
denied rebirth this time around?

01 MAY 2004

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Add Chris Rock to the List of My Generation

In my last few posts, I was lamenting the fact that my generation seems to be missing writer voices. Well, I just picked up Rolling Stone issue 947, that included an interview with Chris Rock. I’ve always appreciated his comedy on a number of levels; but something he said in this interview struck a chord with me:

[RS Interviewer, Neil Strauss]: When you were doing the Janet Jackson bit in your show, you decided to come down against her. What’s the other side?

[Rock]: On one hand, you are crazy to whip out a titty on a Sunday afternoon. On the other hand, there are jet fighters flying over the stadium and people are cheering, “Hey, go murder more people.” This titty, we can’t have this — but murdering jets, now that’s all right.

[RS]: I’m surprised by the near-apathy of popular artists to what’s going on in the world right now.

[Rock]: Can you believe there’s no Rage Against the Machine? There is no Public Enemy? There’s no Arrested Development? No one is talking about anything. Nobody young gives a f**k. The only people that even mention that there is a f**king war are, like, me and Al Franken? It’s a f**king sad time for art. Art is dead, man.

[RS]: Especially since now the right song can make a difference before the election and maybe put a catchphrase in people’s heads.

[Rock]: There is not one record on the radio that reflects anything that is going on, except for the guy, what’s his name? McGraw? Chesnutt? Toby Keith, I mean. I don’t agree with those guys. But I respect them, because at least they’re f**king dealing with what’s going on — in their own crazy right-wing way.

We’ve got AIDS, SARS and all this s**t going on. All these dead dolphins rolled up on some beach the other day. We are at f**king war, people are f**king broke, mothers are killing their kids, and the welfare thing is going on. And everyone is singing, “Everybody in the club getting tipsy.” It’s f**king insane.

Props to Chris Rock. A voice from the 1962-1968 born generation worth listening to.

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