The Lament Of Lon Chaney Jr.

The five-point star is in your palm.
I should have seen this coming.
Tie me up before moonrise, darling.
It was in the screenplay all along.
The old gypsy saw it, she
who crooned that crappy poem
about good men turned to something wrong
and not meant to be,
but she didn’t look past the surface.
Is it so bad to want to consume
those things we love by dark or at noon?
It’s what we all want, at the last.
My eyebrows didn’t just now grow together
or my teeth sprout needles at sunset.
This mask I’ve worn at least since adolescence,
but each morning I checked the wrong mirror.
I’m not the man you thought I was?
I’m all that, and even more.
It’s just that there’s this door
into me that I kept padlocked, because
I thought the rattle of my bones might scare you.
You’d have the right to be scared —
but not of the cheese factor, the claws, the hair.
It’s rather the hungry snarl that intrudes,
the slouch, the lupine gleam
that’s real where my smile was false,
that should send you grasping for the silver cross
to smelt bullets required to close this theme.
Sweet love, I am Lear-like, or more Othelloesque,
passion’s victim, waking from a dream of your love
to find it’s written in the way heaven moves
that I must eat the heart I love the best.
But this is strictly B-movie, right?
Just kiddie fodder, late late show,
the in gag for grownups in the know
to josh in pretense that the wolf’s long night
isn’t theirs, while still they wake sweaty
from suppers of scotch and underdone steak,
touch their sleeping mates, and shift them awake
to say sorry for wounds inflicted when they came home
                                              and dinner wasn’t ready.

A biography of Lon Chaney Jr. can be found here. His life was sad and strange,
and I love him.

Serge Gainsbourg — The Wolf Cha Cha
Howlin Wolf — The Killing Floor

What else is going on: At Film Freak Central, I reviewed Tom & Jerry on Blu-ray.

This entry was posted in Poems that will never see print and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to The Lament Of Lon Chaney Jr.

  1. abbytron says:

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