God bless Stan Lee and Jack Kirby!
They gave me the stuff that dreams are made of,
like jealousy, it feeds upon itself.
When spiders spin their tangled webs,
and hulking monsters destroy empires never dreamed of,
they stand with Roland at the pass.
He never existed either,
only his dust remains,
and our grand dreams.
Stan Lee died yesterday. He helped make the graphic novel an acceptable form of expression. When I bought Daredevil no. 35 in late 1967 I was 13 years old, and it was something different back then. Marvel was remaking itself over from the Atlas years, and I still have dark corners of my mind that lurk with early Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko vignettes of where man meets “monster”. That Daredevil comic launched me into the Marvel Universe and from there into the “real” world. Whatever the name of my chosen career is, I have been labeled with several, and it will take time to decide if any of those have stuck, but this poem comes from the trashing around trying to figure it out phase of the 70s. It is from a manuscript that has never see the light of day called “The Very, Very Early and Very, Very Bad Poetry of (insert name here)”
I have been really enjoying all the old covers and stories on the Facebook groups Marvel Comics Fans 1961-1986 & Greatest Comic Book Covers Ever that people have been sharing, and those people have said more about Stan Lee than I can. How we were imprinted growing is different for everybody, but there must be a common thread. I really enjoyed hunting for old issues in dusty bookstores, etc. to fill in the issues that I had missed thanks to those little side bars of “as seen in issue # 23 of FF” (that is a made-up reference so do not spend time looking for it). That alone helped me learn to catalog and reference series in my library cataloging career.
When I found out that Stan Lee had moved on to his next editorial gig, I had not pulled “Very Bad” off the shelf in forever, but his passing reminded me that this poem had been written. For months I have been trying to remember what poem I wrote that held this line:
“My heroes all came from comic books, the bad guys also.”
It was written in the 80s and comes from a poem called “An Iris”. It never saw print except in a self-published book called “Living with a Stranger: self-portrait”, but it is on my blog atotalsolidwaste.wordpress.com It is on there somewhere.
This piece will probably pop up on my blog sometime this weekend. I will be posting it to the comic book groups I have been following. It is just one story in the world that Stan Lee helped create; I am enjoying reading all the others.
There was a kite fight a couple years ago, both had skilled handlers. They wore gloves against string burns. One was a gaudy orange affair with a long paper tail, the other was a steady blue. The field was pretty even, each had been in fights before. There was a good wind. They knew a trick or two, so it did not take long for the orange Mylar one to cut blue’s string. It fetched up in a high tree where you can still see it today. The occasional couple looks at in the early spring wondering if there was glass on orange’s string.
Nobody could prove it, and orange’s handler is not talking. Besides, the glass would have been pretty high up on the string and when orange cut blue’s line, theirs was cut too. It fell on a power transformer, sparking a fire. The whole town was dark for a week.
There is still talk of upgrading the power grid, but it is the same old poles these days.
What happens when you teach hormone driven creatures to take what is theirs, that it all can be theirs, and they cannot loose? They are failures if they lose: anger?
What happens when you teach hormone driven creatures to never take what is theirs, that nothing is theirs, and that they cannot win? They are failures if they win: frustration?
What happens when hormone driven creatures are broken, get frustrated and angry, when it is all theirs but is not? They go mad when it is never theirs and they cannot win: rebellion?
All Donald J. Trump has to do to make all his problems go away, the Grand Jury investigation go away, he would get my full support and a written apology for my ignorance and lack of understanding is to release his tax returns, with schedules from 1980 forward. 1980 to 2017 and it all goes away. However he will not do this because he probably has something to hide. He is probably a criminal. He is probably compromised by foreign nationals.
The people who supported him and worked for him will not have aided and abetted in a criminal conspiracy to defraud the U.S. His tax returns will demonstrate that his policies do not reflect his financial interests. His tax returns will show that during his presidency he has not violated the emoluments clause of the Constitution. All the people who are in Trump’s administration have to have told him that all he has to do is release those returns and all of the “fake news” will stop. All he has to do to prove “no collusion” is release his tax returns. All this goes away and everybody will be tranquil again, we will all be working for the common good.
All of this goes away. So, why will he not do that?
All of this goes away.
The world rotates away from the local star into the older light. The reflected light on the clouds over the east took on the colors of Russell or Remington paintings without the people, a landscape but with a pallet knife touches smearing a Georgia peach in all its glory of yellows and salmons turning the pines of the mountain almost aspergillus green.
Children of the craft learned from riding the sphere into and away from the stars to tell time before the incandescence of bulbs and excited gasses. They knew that the youngest light a human saw as he peered up through the branches and the leaves was lightning arches that left after images as the dark closed in behind. Maybe later, after they were lead out into the grasslands by Lucifer, God, or even the aliens (she, he, it, or they), humans learned to corral fire left over from the spear of lightning, thinking it the blood of the earth due to its ruddy hew. It is warm like blood. Or it could have been some genetic pressure that guided the hands to the friction of stick, or the spark of stone.
New light is easy now. A flicked switch heats filament or charges phosphorous from mercury gas. Less than a second to create, about the same amount of time for moonlight to reach the Earth at 360,000ish miles per second reflected from the moon.
Children of the ecliptic know that the new light of the local wanderers is not very old, not that they do not listen to the new stories, but the old light, the old stories are out beyond their star’s solar winds. This is one of the things that set the children of the craft apart.
In the United States of America having a political opinion is not a crime, but I have also heard that ignorance of the law is no excuse. What happens when your vote is cast for an active participant in a criminal conspiracy to defraud the United States of America?
Are you a victim or are you a co-conspirator?
The tragic thing about this question is that over the next two years, we may be forced to answer that question.
New attacks on the experiment of democracy require new defenses.
Wherever you find mass graves, you know that someone has been guilty of bad government.
Trump has parent issues. They were never nice enough to him, and he is taking it out on America.
In all the expectation of finding out if people have learned anything out of this coup d’état of the Republican Party, the FSB, and exploiters of the masses everywhere, I have forgotten an important thing. On Nov. 7th, the Special Counsel and Grand Jury can start bringing charges and arrests back into the public view without worry of stepping on political convention.
And something for exploiters et al to remember from now on, if the masses prove to have learned something, this will not happen again.