Ode to Iggy Pop, by John Nash

by John Nash, a.k.a. (the Sydney) Mark O’Connor

If someone has to suffer for art,
why not the listener,
“so-called”? Come and be miserable,
bird-brain, thimble-brain,
brain full of other brains,
“the speed of thought is not
greater than that of speech,
nor does it defy
the tongue or even the brain”
though when Donald Duck talks
and you can’t lip-read
who can think life is empty?
when at any moment
someone may fall off the stage swearing
and puke all over your clean trousers?

Though his hands are in his pocket
he is pointing at something
it’s an idea of a sort
it’s a plan of a kind
are we going to do it or what?
Decide, o reader. Uh-huh.
The past keeps talking to everyone
but nothing is happening
you think, or she said
while the lazy dogs of yesterday
were stepping around.
We puzzled over their torts.
In the great historical moment
they were impressed, by Pushkin
for example:
“It sails. But whither shall we sail?” or even the lacustrine finger in the ear:

      “Why sleeps the future, like a snake enrolled,
      Coil within coil, at midday?”

The mountain stopped heaving: and bowels
of trouble were humming
in the young French park.
You die with a terrible headache
but who cares? ’cause we’re
beyond that, in a region of pressure
called the Wall of Sound
where the “drugs” you take for your “voice”
beat a path to my “door”.
— the moving poet writes and,
having writ moves you.