Rock star found dead

i am in a small recording studio on
e 10th st playing a lime green stratocaster
that isn't mine. the room is crowded but i
only know 2 of the people; one is nick
on bass and the other is nigel playing
sax & blues harps. my skin is stretched
tight, i'm a sail and the boat is moving. i'm
a lampshade. it's not

much of a studio, more like a $10 an hour
rehersal room w/ a tape deck, mixer & some
ambient mics & i have been away for a while,
almost a year. there's a drummer nick found
somewhere & we run through some of the old
songs to warm up & then nick has some new
ones & so do i, we've got notebooks full of
stuff & it doesn't take long till we're playing

through them & then nick says he heard
this song in the bahamas, said, sly &
robbie wrote it & it wasn't on any record
but he heard the tape when he was visiting
his friend who was an engineer at compass
point, a studio down there. i knew the engineer,
used to live in nyc, had a surfboard, said he

would take the train to rockaway with the
board & i had asked at the time, don't
people look at you funny? & he said, it's
new york man, people don't look at you, well
that was a couple of years earlier when i
was new to the city. we ran through the
song that ended with the rock star found dead
line, a sortid tale of a local boy gone bad.

you like it don't you? nick asked. oh, yeah.
i knew you would, he said. the people in the room
clap & the guy that runs the place gets it on
tape & we get the hell out of there after a few hours,
nigel tags along to the international b&g & i step out
side saying i'm going for smokes, walk a couple of
blocks where the action still is & it's like i never
left, hector standing in a doorway on e 13th drinking

a bud pounder, you know, hector never holds, it's in
his mailbox & then a few snorts on a quiet block off
b & wings. i'm a lava lamp. i'm a microwave. i'm walking
back to the international to hear the news choo-choo
died that day. choo started the whole marijuana messenger
service from the ashes of the church of realized fantasies
years earlier. choo had heart & balls & was a great friend.

the international was always our home base & some other
people come in that were associated with the business. i
am a lava lampshade with wings in some inner circle
of gangsters. and then i'm not, i'm in hoboken the next
morning singing a tribute song for choo in nigel's studio.
nick wrote the words, came a long way through the
pouring rain. i'm a lime green stratocaster that isn't

mine. i'm a historian playing songs for the dead & then
i'm on a train. i've always been on a train yelling my
history at an engineer who has always been drunk.

Don't smoke in bed

nina simone
paints my desk,
my walls
johnny thunders
nods in the corner
he always dressed well
like all the old
jazz guys
patti smith
is dancing barefoot
she says
warrior wins
remember daddy
i know
she had 2 apartments
on 5th ave
right above washington sq
that she tore out the walls
and made them one
while she danced
with chinese rocks
before fred, detroit
i know
my friend
got stabbed
in the back of the neck
on calder st
died there &
she didn't know
how to help me
i told her
all right

Mike Boyle lives and works in Harrisburg, PA.
There's been street life, bar life and factory life
in several cities.There's been songs with several bands,
poems, stories, home recordings as bohobait and several
novel messes.

His latest chapbook is Laundromat Suite (Rank Stranger Press)

2005 Underground Voices