Larry Brody’s Poetry: ‘We All Aspire To Be Assholes’

Not really an asshole, but he does work in showbiz.

 by Larry Brody

NOTE FROM LB

Once again, I feel that I must remind you. Every word in these poems is true, one way or another, and these poems all are part of a search – not necessarily successful, I admit – for a larger truth. The event described in this one shook me to the core when it happened. Now it just seems like, “Oh. Yeah. Right.” Oh those crazy, zany aspirations!


We All Aspire To Be Assholes

“We all aspire to be assholes,”

A Hollywood friend says to me.

“Megalomaniacs! Misogynists! Creeps!”

Twenty-five years ago my Hollywood friend

Was young and hopeful, his face open and

Smiling and naive. Now his blonde

Hair is dark, his look tight, mouth rolled like a snail.

I can’t tell if he has closed down because he

Let out too much of himself, or because

Too much of too many others got in.

We swap stories of other executives’ selfishness,

Arrogance, and dirty deeds. Then he leans back,

Thoughtful, looks past me, out a wall-sized window

With a Wilshire Boulevard view. “A few years ago

I worked at Disney,” he tells me. “They’ve got a

Good one there. The boss works seven days a week,

Has a slogan: ‘Don’t work Saturday

If you can’t work Sunday too. We had a meeting

One Sunday afternoon. Him. Me. Three other suits.

I was putting together a Davy Crockett series,

And needed a corporate level decision. Nothing

Creative, just whether or not something would be

In keeping with the Disney image. A decision only

The boss could make. The five of us discussed

Things, and then, suddenly, the boss nodded off.

He was asleep at his desk! His chin rested on his

Palm, his eyes closed. Sssst, he was gone,

Like a tire without air. The suit who was talking

Stopped in mid-sentence. We looked at each other.

I nodded toward the boss. ‘Should we…?’ No one

Said a word, but all three suits shook their heads.

We sat silently for a minute…Two…Three…Four…

Then, with a sputter, the boss shook himself,

And his eyes opened, refocused just like that.

Immediately, the suit who had been talking

Resumed exactly where he’d left off.

The boss listened, said something wise, made his

Decision, and our meeting was over. We filed out, and

Another group entered so the next meeting could begin.

He hadn’t missed a beat! Didn’t even

Know he had fallen asleep!

Oh yes,” sighs my Hollywood

Friend, “he’s a good one! Twenty years younger

Than I am, and the man I always wanted to be.”

I nod. I sit silently. My Hollywood friend

Has a job to give out, and I need it.

We all aspire to be assholes,

No matter how much—or how little—we know.

###


Larry Brody is the head dood at TVWriter™. He is posting at least one poem a week here at TVWriter™ because, as the Navajo Dog herself once pointed out, “Art has to be free. If you create it for money, you lose your vision, and yourself.” She said it shorter, though, with just a snort.

Larry Brody’s Poetry: ‘Zarathustra Came Down From the Mountain’

My uncle’s ’55 Olds Holiday 98. Except not turqoise. And his had 4 doors & never went near a Palm Tree in blustery Chicago

 by Larry Brody

NOTE FROM LB

Here’s a family memory. About God, of course. I mean, God’s family, isn’t he? Well, he was, once upon a time anyway, right?


‘Zarathustra Came Down From the Mountain’

Zarathustra came down from the mountain

Bearing the news that God was dead.

In my mind, I see him at the wheel of

A ‘55 Olds, like the one my uncle had,

Turquoise and white, chrome like lightning

On each side. Zarathustra, of course,

Being cool, drives a convertible, and in

The back seat, under the hot, Godless sun,

Are the two tablets of Moses, the originals

That he shattered when he saw what the

Israelites had done. Zarathustra’s news is

Impressive, but not nearly as hot as his style;

Shouting and ranting work every time.

I long for the days of proclamations,

Of declarations of beginnings and ends.

I long for the days of men going to mountains,

And finding the one great and true way.

I long for the days of my childhood,

In my uncle’s ‘55 Olds.

###


Larry Brody is the head dood at TVWriter™. He is posting at least one poem a week here at TVWriter™ because, as the Navajo Dog herself once pointed out, “Art has to be free. If you create it for money, you lose your vision, and yourself.” She said it shorter, though, with just a snort.

Larry Brody’s Poetry: ‘2 Short Takes’

“Poetry in motion…woo hoo….”

 by Larry Brody

NOTE FROM LB

A couple of short poems. Or at least they feel like poems to me. Notice that I said “poems” – a couple of times – instead of “poetry.” As what follows should tell you, that’s just my false modesty.


Spring Break

Life demands.

Life teaches.

The eternal semester!

With tuition constantly on the rise.

No scholarships are given,

And no student loans.

My last professor was a demon,

And the final was straight from hell,

But there’s no dropping out of the program,

As we all learn too well.

###

Having Answers Is Embarrassing

After years of searching, of believing only in the quest,

Having answers is embarrassing.

My unexpected knowledge seems infinite,

Perfect, wondrous in its wisdom,

And I hem, haw, and stutter with pride.

When this happens, the Navajo Dog

Laughs and rephrases the old questions

In ways I cannot understand,

So the hunt can begin anew!

###


Larry Brody is the head dood at TVWriter™. He is posting at least one poem a week here at TVWriter™ because, as the Navajo Dog herself once pointed out, “Art has to be free. If you create it for money, you lose your vision, and yourself.” She said it shorter, though, with just a snort.

Larry Brody’s Poetry: ‘Sitting Shivah’

Not my ex (found on the interwebs)

 by Larry Brody

NOTE FROM LB

A true story about a visit – a long time ago! – that never should have been made, built upon a premise that first appeared here just a few weeks ago. When I’m being deliberately poetic (and, maybe, obtuse) I think of this as “An Ode to Divorce.”


Sitting Shivah

The other day I saw a woman I once loved.

She was Kid Hollywood’s second wife,

The one I never liked.

I waited for the rage that had always

Shaken the Kid’s gut when he was with her,

Even during the best of times.

Where was that quickening of my heartbeat,

The good old fight or flight?

Where was the wild helplessness,

That sense of being caged?

Ah, I was someone else now,

Even though she still seemed the same,

And my pulse stayed steady, my stomach

As empty as my heart. Without fury

I didn’t know what to do.

Kid Hollywood was the one with the bitterness,

With contempt that made way only for hate.

All I felt was sorrow for the two of them.

Him then,

Her now,

Because Kid Hollywood has shuffled off to Buffalo,

But she still is the same.


Larry Brody is the head dood at TVWriter™. He is posting at least one poem a week here at TVWriter™ because, as the Navajo Dog herself once pointed out, “Art has to be free. If you create it for money, you lose your vision, and yourself.” She said it shorter, though, with just a snort.

Larry Brody’s Poetry: ‘Another Day, On The Pueblo’

 by Larry Brody

NOTE FROM LB

The Navajo Dog revisits! I knew she loved us far too much to stay away!


Another Day, On The Pueblo

For a time, I lived on the Santa Clara Pueblo,

About halfway between Taos and Santa Fe.

The house was in the shadow of sacred

Black Mesa, and directly in front of the door

Was a ceremonial kiva, a relic of the old ways.

Cattle grazed freely on the land, and among them

Roamed Boomer the Golden Retriever and,

When it suited her whim, the little red-and-white
Navajo dog.

At night, when it was warm enough, my love

And I would sit by the kiva and eat dinner, while

Gazing up at the dancing stars. The heavens

Seemed afire with gyring dervishes,

Spinning and careening from North to South,

And often Gwen would ask, “But what are they?

Why do they dance? Who sent them? Where

Are they from?” I would deal with this as I

Dealt with all such questions, and shake my

Head and say, “Wait…” and “Watch…”

As not so long before had been said to me,

For I knew that like me, someday

She would find the answer herself.

I remember one Spring afternoon, before Gwen

Came to join the dogs and me, I went outside to

Bask in the warm sun. I spread a towel

On the ground and lay on my back. Above me,

The sky was a deep New Mexico blue,

And in it a single cloud floated, so low

I thought it was awaiting my touch.

Suddenly, I felt a chill, and realized

It came from the kiva, which had not been used

In almost a hundred years. I felt a panic, a

Sense of loss that seized me so tightly I scarcely

Could breathe, and I called out for the Navajo dog.

When I got no answer, I called again, and again,

And still several times more. At last, Boomer

Appeared to be petted, but there was no sign of

The Navajo dog. Then I heard her voice,

Coming from the kiva, like the voice of a god.

“I travel,” sang the voice of the Navajo dog. “I journey.

I fly with my brother the wind.

I am off,” sang the voice, “with a rush and a whisper,

With a whoop and a roar.”

“But I need you!” I said. “You can’t go. What would

I do? How would I live?”

“Like yourself,” came the voice of the Navajo dog.

“You would live as you must.”

“I must live with you!”

“Cowardly boy,” sang the voice from the kiva,

“Don’t you know what you don’t need?

You are healed! All is over, yet all begins!”

I moved to the edge of the kiva, peered

Down at the darkness within. “I’m not

Ready!” I cried, and I heard the laugh of

The Navajo dog. “You think to fool she

Who loves you, who created you, with

Such a weak lie? Tell yourself false

Stories, if you must, craven son, but you

Know far more than you believe!

Now stand straight,” sang her voice.

“Walk in beauty. Go on, take the step. You

Have set yourself free.” Beside me, Boomer

Whined—and so did I: “Will I see you again?

Will you ever return?” But no answer came.

I heard the end of the song, the last striking

Of Mother Earth’s drum, then another laugh,

And Boomer cried. I shivered, and started back

To the house, reached down to stroke him, but

Now he too was gone. I turned, and saw him running

To the far end of the field, and just as suddenly

As the panic had struck I felt it go.

The golden retriever was running to the

Navajo dog!

She was coming down the road that led

To the highway, striding as only she can.

Boomer nosed her, and she snapped him

Away, trotted to the kiva, where she sat

Down and scratched. “That towel looks

More comfortable than dirt,” said the Navajo

Dog. “You want to sit on it?” I said.

Her tongue lolled. “What I want is to see the

Fruit of my womb,” said the dog. “What I want

Is to watch you, and let myself swell with pride.

It’s my due! I’ve earned it! I deserve my reward.

Then,” she said, “then, ah, just watch my soul fly!”

With a yip, the Navajo dog bounded off, and Boomer

Followed. I watched them go, then lay down on my

Towel, stretched out my arm toward the cloud.

It felt soft, like the fleece it resembled,

And I moved it away easily,

So I could enjoy the sun.


Larry Brody is the head dood at TVWriter™. He is posting at least one poem a week here at TVWriter™ because, as the Navajo Dog herself once pointed out, “Art has to be free. If you create it for money, you lose your vision, and yourself.” She said it shorter, though, with just a snort.

Larry Brody’s Poetry: ‘I Sing Of The Human Spirit’

The secret to becoming Big Larry – or Big Gracie, et al – is to keep dreaming. And singing – that’s a big part of #win

 by Larry Brody

NOTE FROM LB

This one is for all of us, the #creatives actively and lovingly and totally engaged in the #writinglife with all its ups and downs and joys and pains. The most important part of the dream is the #dreaming. The #standingtall. As long as you keep going, know what? You #win.


I Sing Of The Human Spirit

I sing of the human spirit.

My song explodes with a cymbal crash from my soul.

Nothing can stand against my song. My arpeggios

Pierce walls. My major chords shatter windows.

My minors topple fences, while gates swing open

To the rhythm of my heart.

My high notes soar past the atmosphere,

And my bass line moves the planet,

Swinging us ‘round and round.

But it is the spirit that embraces the universe,

And the spirit the cosmos applauds.

 

I dream of the human spirit.

My dream takes me to heights and depths

Far beyond Ego, Superego, or Id. My dream

Raises me and I fly, dashes me down to a fall.

It incites me to attack, and compels my retreat.

In my dream I can win and I can lose, but never

Is there a draw.

My dream frightens me as much as it excites me,

And I quiver and quail more than I

Brandish my powerful arms,

But without it there would be no song.


Larry Brody is the head dood at TVWriter™. He is posting at least one poem a week here at TVWriter™ because, as the Navajo Dog herself once pointed out, “Art has to be free. If you create it for money, you lose your vision, and yourself.” She said it shorter, though, with just a snort.

Larry Brody’s Poetry: ‘Kid Hollywood Died The Same Way He Was Born’

Aw, for cryin’ out loud. Didja know that when you google ‘Kid Hollywood’ all you get is ‘Hollywood Kids?’

 by Larry Brody

NOTE FROM LB

Ah, back to showbiz at last. But first a few words about today’s title.

Just to  be clear, I don’t really think I’m dead, not in any way . Because from the right angle, with just the proper squint and a frame of mind that encompasses more than we can ever see, it’s pretty clear that nothing ever really dies at all.

Hey, it had to be said, right?


Kid Hollywood Died The Same Way He Was Born

Kid Hollywood died the same way he was born,

In fits of desperation and starts of joy.

Empty life stretched out behind him,

Roads not taken, fences built, barricades

Between the man and the soul. Easy, he thought,

So easy, to leave it behind, to loose his grip on

Failed dreams and unkept vows. Simple, he thought,

So simple, to throw the past into darkness and move

Toward the light.

But the lies clung to him like barbed wire, piercing

His spirit, and puncturing his resolve, and truth

Came and went like miracles performed only

In their own time. Ah, he would see it,

He would grin, and chortle, and laugh:

A turning point, new life waiting, a great leap

For him to take! But the turn would twist,

And he would crash and fall. Deep within,

That most sheltered part of him would shatter,

And, in a way most mythological, re-create.

Kid Hollywood was a fragile one; that was the

Truth that had created all the lies.

But out of that fragility comes the

Serene being so enjoying haranguing you…

Now.


Larry Brody is the head dood at TVWriter™. He is posting at least one poem a week here at TVWriter™ because, as the Navajo Dog herself once pointed out, “Art has to be free. If you create it for money, you lose your vision, and yourself.” She said it shorter, though, with just a snort.