for Emerson Maxwell

it is a shimmer
the sound of waves colliding
preceding the proscenium
hands clap, noise roars
life surges and there alone stands

THE ROCK N ROLL BOY
(subtitled: “Heavy Metal in Deep Water”)

The Rock n Roll boy is underwater swimming/
singing, bubbling joy, little drowning boy
playing air guitar upside down, talking with the fishes
on the telephone—“hey, NEVER put me on HOLD!”

He hangs up noisily, oh joy, the splash of wave
met with fist of meaning—hey, that’s it for meaning!

He knows better, never wait, never fear, never surrender,
only the joy of the sound, he chants, “NaaNanaaNAA, NaaNanaaNAA.”
He is happy, fully clothed, laughing at our amusement—
“You all think before you leap—besides, I look even BETTER naked!”
His eyes shine as he finds his audience amidst the ripple and foam.
He sings to drown feedback, make harmony of white noise, chime into
the music of the spheres though he’s still uncertain what they think
of him, it is no matter, his shell necklace was a gift, “Oh yeah,
rock, rock, rock around the clock, LONG LIVE, LIVE LONG, LING LONG,
ROCK, ROCK, ROCK n ROLL!

Standing in the surf he mocks us, “C’mon, C’mon, One For the Money
two for the show, three to get ready, everyone start to Rock’n’Roll!
NOW GO CAT GO” and the crowd is roaring with him, singing:
“Surfing USA”, and “Rock a Billy Boogie”, digging his fishnet
tank top, tattoos, pierced Rastafarian dreadlocks, rings on his fingers,
bells on his toes (Uh Hunh) shaved eyebrows, pierced nipples AND MORE!!
He’s a little bit me, a little bit you, and there is nothing you can do,

but ROCK BACK at the Rock N Roll boy in the bay doing the wave,
“Yeah go cat go; WE knew the bride when she used to rock n roll:
WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS!”

Boom chika boom go the waves
and the umbrellas furl as the sun sets,
and still he rocks on, if he doesn’t come out
we’re going to have to drag him out,
as natural as the action on the beach;
just a little bit me, just a little bit you.

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