Gary Beck


Radiation Rhapsody

Strum a chord for me,
and I shall improvise…

Sparrows sit upon the window-sills
watching in bewilderment
as snot-nosed children
cower under desks
in the schoolrooms of the world,
while daddy’s working hard,
building rockets…

Presidents and Premiers
(protocol is not forgotten)
send each other formal notes,
while people read the pamphlets
of atomic age survival.

Shall I be a garbage man
and haul away the ashes?
But who will haul away my ashes,
if the whole world crashes?

Ride with me…
Put your farecard in the turnstile to annihilation.
The "A" train stops at Times Square station,
opens it’s pneumatic doors,
ejects the crowds whose rhinoceros roars
are silenced by a blinding flash,
a sudden flood
of molten slag

No more rush hour.
No quick latté at Starbucks.
Just a large crater
that will glow at night
for the next hundred years.

Gary Beck has spent most of his adult life as a theater director and worked as an art dealer when he couldn't earn a living in the theater. He has also been a tennis pro, a ditch digger and a salvage diver. His chapbook 'Remembrance' was published by Origami Condom Press, 'The Conquest of Somalia' was published by Cervena Barva Press, 'The Dance of Hate' was published by Calliope Nerve Media and 'Mutilated Girls' is being published by Bedouin Press. A collection of his poetry 'Days of Destruction' was published by Skive Press. Another collection 'Expectations' was published by Rogue Scholars Press. His original plays and translations of Moliere, Aristophanes and Sophocles have been produced Off Broadway and toured colleges and outdoor performance venues. His poetry has appeared in hundreds of literary magazines. He currently lives in New York City.

(author retains copyright)