Anthony Frisina's Blog

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Coming Soon…

Hey everyone,

 
Just wanted to drop a quick blurb to let you know the reason I have not posted in a while is because I am working on a crazy new social experiment.  I will be launching it within the next month or so (and will still try to post some old poems now and then here) so hang tight…

So, until then, scroll  down to read some of my thoughts and poems, feel free to comment and drop me notes and I will be back shortly to let you know about what insane wackiness I’m working on next.

 
Anthony

 

My Mountains

I always seem to convince myself that my resources are tapped.

I always know I am great

I just believe I am empty.

I often find the courage,

it’s the confidence that seems to hide.

So, I tend to do what’s necessary…

trust in the simple fact

that life just keeps on going…

it’s been here before

it will be here after

one step in front of the other

when eventually, moments arise

moments when I am out of body

moments when I am away from home

far from my country

wandering strange mountains trying to befriend strange people

Read the rest of this entry »

Farewell Poem (23 July 11)

It seems that all the ghosts are coming out for a haunting…

The chaos is creating pressure

testing us for what we stand for

and we are crumbling;

I am running

you are pushing

and it feels like everyone else is just laughing.

 

We are both stranger than truth

but we seem not to care;

no effort to hang on.

 

We used to be romantics and dreamers…

When did we make love a consolation prize?

 

I’ll be flying over this great country soon

not knowing where I’ll be going

preferring to remain ignorant about some things.

I know another adventure is beginning

and I wish you were going

because somewhere over the past year

we both offered up our selfishness for unity

combining our energy to experience life rather than society;

to climb low and fall high and fly right beside God’s endless land.

 

I have seen my dreams and I miss making them real;

they become a burden when held in only two arms

and I suppose that is why we live…

but how sweet it would have been

if you were willing to trust

and stuck by me

along side me

and chose life over labor.

 

 

af

i remember

I remember the way it was

I remember feeling like I did not matter

I remember becoming a number

 

I remember that day

I remember all of the days

I remember the arrogance

I remember the smirk

I remember the proof

I remember we the people not caring

 

I remember the smoke

I remember the anger

I remember the loathing

I remember the hatred

I remember the world pleading for unity

I remember the defiance, the solitude

I remember the lack of remorse

I remember, over and over, “with us or against us”

I remember the disgrace

I remember the declaration

I remember the pictures

I remember the lies

I remember the second declaration

I remember pitting citizen against citizen

 

I remember the closed door, the back door

I remember the surveillance

I remember bill after bill stripping my rights naked

I remember the scandals

I remember the torture

I remember the division

I remember the collapse

 

I remember the acceptance of social sin for the safety of the voter

 

I remember schools getting packed

I remember jobs being lost

I remember bombs being made

 

I remember staring at the blank television screen where the coffins draped with American flags should have been.

 

I remember zero sense of sacrifice

I remember never being asked

I remember being encouraged not to

 

When you ask me about my bias and my scorn…

When you mock me for being too angry in this life…

When you question my honor and my motives…

When you remind me that it is all in the past…

When you scold me for recalling that past…

 

I remember

 

I remember the cowardice of this citizenry

I remember no accountability for our current condition

I remember the people of the republic accepting no responsibility

 

Take off the masks

Understand why

Question instead of answer

 

Until that time

I will keep remembering

I will hold strong to my beliefs

 

I was there…

I remember

 

af

 

a short one-act

ONE

The “Devils on Horseback” arrived.  One of the first things I read this morning when I woke and bought a paper.  Generally I skip past this part.  It’s been happening for so long that it’s always going to be there, so tomorrow I’ll check it out.  They’ll be something about it tomorrow.

Of course I’m concerned.  Of course I care.  And I plan on doing something about it…to help in some way (give a donation, maybe volunteer, have a fundraiser).  You know what I would love to do?  To get out and travel too?  Save up some money, raise some also (it’s for a good cause), and go there for a couple of weeks.  Go there, join some organization, and get hands on.  It’s time that I do something about it.  No one else is.

When, though?  When?  I guess in the Spring I can do without work for a few weeks.  That just means I have a lot of work to do now to cover my ass when I’m gone…bill-wise and stuff.  Shit, that’s a lot of money, though.  I know, I know.  Let me get some research done.  In the meantime.  Start reading up, talk, organize a group…Just need to…Just need to smoke first…

TWO

Now why are you getting so hard on yourself that you are smoking right now?  That you did?  You keep on saying, “Well, I would do that if I didn’t smoke.  I am a hypocrite, I am this, I am that.”  But right at this moment you are sitting at your computer writing thought after thought…CREATING, right now at this moment, and you turn it into something that is evil, complacent…Find excuses why it isn’t good enough and why you should quit because of your family or your brother, or these girls you don’t want to date or this or that.  THAT is the hypocrite, my friend.  THAT is the one in your mind.  Not you, not you soul, this little monster you’ve created in your mind that keeps on telling you it’s bad it’s bad it’s bad…Is it bad?   It is not bad and you better shut that pruned fucking face up right quick before we are getting it on.  That’s right, little white boy can get Miss Harlem Ghetto on your ass too.  Cause we building an army too, and no matter what, we are winning.  We got a lifetime ahead of us and we are winning. Do you mind that?

THREE

We are the controllers of our own destiny.  We are the people responsible for the other people in the world.  We are to hold ourselves highest and understand that each and everybody else is doing the same.  I am not the center of the world…I am a part of it.

These thoughts are not unique.  These words are not original.  The motivations, the insults, the ignorance, the education, the dreaming…we’ve all heard them, known them.

That’s not what this is about.  This is…

Today I went searching through magazines I have, papers I’ve saved, the news fresh off the press.  This is about us living so far in our worlds that we have lost the sight to see that we are nothing, our struggles are nothing in comparison to what our lifestyles are creating in places that, to us, are merely recycled paper.

FOUR

“When the [Devil’s on] horseback arrived…Jidah Zakaria had no where to go…SO the 80-plus-year-old woman remained inside her hut and prayed [they] would overlook her.  They Didn’t.  Zakaria’s straw hut was torched while she was still inside.  In an instant, the burning structure collapsed on top of her, searing the flesh off of her arms, legs and back.”  (Rich Schapiro, NY Daily News, 16 Dec 06)

I picked up a magazine with a famous funny-man on the cover and back on page 342 of 363 pages, there is an article about one block, in a torn city down south, that hasn’t changed on bit in well over a year.  There’s another magazine with pictures of that same town, same area, a year ago and discussions about them and still, there is nothing, NOTHING different about this amazing little village.  The consistency in their lives are amazing…praiseworthy.  Then again, it’s easy to be consistent when you have no home, no faith, no hope.

THREE

We are the controllers of our own destiny.

TWO

Now, why are you getting so hard on yourself.

ONE

Of course I’m concerned.  Of course I care.  It’s just…

FOUR

Something.  It’s always something.

XTRA

You need to take care of yourself…It has to be about you first.

FOUR

 Always something.

TWO

Enough to make us ignore that we are not the center of the world…only part of it.

one year ago, today

One year ago today, I moved back to New York.  Three hundred and sixty six days later, I still do not know if I left my life or began running towards a new one, both statements being equally hyperbolic; It is impossible to leave part of one’s life behind because it will always be engrained in the memory, in the emotions and every decision and moment are permanently attached to time in order for life to continue pushing it all forward.  Same goes for starting a new one.

Last year on this exact day and around the same exact time as I am writing this, I sat across a table from the most beautiful woman I have ever known.  We shared breakfast together.  We tried to talk and it all ended up as small talk.  It was very difficult to breathe the entire morning.  I ate and felt more sick with every bite.  I stared, during the drive there, all during the meal, on the drive across the street then standing outside of the airport as I stood there with my bags ready to leave her.  I finally smelled her hair one last time as I grabbed her and almost crushed her with my embrace.  Then I turned around and walked.  I had to just go.

Last year for my birthday, I was on the beach with her all day.  It was simple and perfect.  She was the only person I talked with, the only person I saw and my life consisted of myself, her and whatever was a part of us at that moment.

Then I blinked, took a breath, got scared; One entire year now gone. For the past year, most of the moments that have filled my life have been moments of want, whether it be for a job, a reason, a purpose, love, companionship or answers.  I have wanted.

I often get annoyed with people who say that it doesn’t matter where I am but who I am inside.  I do not agree.  I believe that where I am is often a reflection of who I am inside.  I am here in New York because I have been too scared to stand on my own and accept that sometimes, good things end.  I have seen a year flash by as fast as a day because I have wanted, because I have had and am now without and refuse to let go.  I am here because I left my life in LA to come back to the life I had originally left to go there, and now I have two to contend with.  I came back here because I dove back into the trash to find the diamonds I lost, and I am afraid they are gone.  And it all keeps moving forward.

There was a time when I lived here and New York City was something else to me.  It was friends, it was the theater.  It was expression.  It was an endless family with the rest of them close by.  It was thirty years of all I knew, thirty years of development, of ideals, of education, of experience, of the entire colorful scale of emotion a human being acquires and lives through.

I find myself stuck now.  Stuck within rhetoric, stuck in fear, stuck with the reality of mortality and the want for either something more or something different.  I am stuck with ghosts, memories and the hindsight of what could have been done with second chances.  I am running in place fueling a machine that I do not believe in but I do not want to break free from it alone.

I know what is out there.  I know the endless nature, the bottomless quantities of cultures, the perfection of life just outside the traps of society; I have experienced a lot of it.

It’s been a year, and that’s all the time a person needs to give up and give in.  That’s more than enough time for the weak to succumb or the vulnerable to be broken.  I know, somewhere deep, that the time I needed for closure is nearing its end, that it is time for me to leave this place that now has nothing to offer me on a life path I once pursued and desire to get back on once again.  A wanderer, a journeyman, must continue moving.  When I tasted the food in Italy, it paralyzed me, but I eventually left.  When I swam in the middle of that pristine lake in El Salvador, I swore I’d float there for years, but I got on the plane to leave.  A year later, the smell of her hair still infects me, but I must learn to take it with me.  I must find a way for it to not strap my feet to the ground but to lift me up onto the wind to float me around once more.

I don’t know where I need to go to next, but, I never really did.  And I have the confidence and ignorance to not ask why or how.

Apathy

Apathy:

1: lack of feeling or emotion: impassiveness

2: lack of interest or concern: indifference

Last year, over six hundred and eighty-five thousand New Yorkers, over ninety percent non-white, were harassed by a policy the police have adapted called Stop & Frisk, the success rate being approximately ten percent.  Complaints about Stop & Frisk were down thirty-four percent.

A few days ago, every news network in New York (and probably everywhere else) exploded with word that a shooter had shot ten people near the Empire State Building, ending with two people dead.  Everyone cried out about another gun massacre, a call to arms went up again about gun control and we all felt angry.  The truth, though, is that the shooter shot and killed one person.  The other nine people, including the shooter, were all shot by two police officers of New York City who discharged 16 rounds.

A couple of weeks ago, a man with a knife in Times Square was shot twelve times by police officers.  The man did not attack anyone and, after being confronted by police, lunged at an officer, which prompted them to open fire.  He was originally confronted for smoking marijuana and the police have come forward in admitting that they knew the man (from past arrests) and that they also knew that he was mentally unstable.

I will never deny the danger that our police officers are constantly in but I also refuse to deny the hypocrisy of that danger.  It is a job where the individual assumes the danger that they will face.  When one becomes an officer of the law, paid by the taxes of every citizen of New York City, they assume a responsibility to Protect and to Serve.  On the side of every police vehicle are the words Courtesy, Professionalism, Respect.  They are also trained, extensively, in all and every sort of scenario that they might face.  I am proud of the resources that go into that training.

Restraint is a major part of that training.  In the face of a threat, those endless hours of gun training (again, that we have paid for) give them the skills to disarm and take down a perp with minimal danger to the criminal and to those in the surrounding area.  Restraint, focus, patience, professionalism.  The average citizen allows passion to overcome their actions, and that is what makes an officer of the law different.  That is why we trust them with deadly weapons and with our protection, because they should know better.

In every case above, their leaders, Raymond Kelly and Michael Bloomberg, have justified the actions of the police and have justified the force used.  That is to be expected.  I do not agree.  Personally, I am disgusted and disgraced that those types of actions are accepted and encouraged in the place where I live.  I have resided in New York City fourteen years.  In this past year, it is the first time in my entire time living here where I have felt more afraid of the danger from the police force I pay to protect me than I do the criminals in the city.  And, I know that I am not alone.

Perhaps I am just joining the party.  After-all, I know minorities have been reluctant targets of the police for decades before me.

There is only so much blame to be placed on these officers because this is what they are being encouraged to do by their leaders.  It is what they now are being taught.  And it is all being justified by the complete apathy, if not also the encouragement, of the citizens of this city.

Everyone is angry these days, but everyone seems to be more concerned with living a disruption-free life.  I have been searching for the word that best describes the new condition of the citizen-base of this city and the only word that continually stands at the forefront of my mind is pathetic.  The citizens of New York have become pathetic with the obsession of their apathy.  It has become a badge of honor to work, make money and disregard the effort necessary, the responsibility required, to fulfill their duty as an active citizen in a democracy.

Have we always been hypocrites and I am just seeing it?  Or have our priorities really become so selfish that we can make no effort whatsoever to stand up for what is right anymore?

“Those who desire to give up freedom in order to gain security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

Common Sense

I am an adult.  All the people I associate with are adults.  Yet, I seemingly find myself in the most interesting situation of needing to explain common sense (with or without logic attached) to most of those adults that I am in frequent contact with.  It’s a phenomenon that completely confounds me.  Whether it be friends, ex-girlfriends, people I work with, it is always the same.  I’ll ask something, they will ask what it means, I explain it and they ask what it means.

“What I initially asked or the explanation of it?”

“Your explanation.”

“Well, my explanation was explaining my original question, which you didn’t understand.”

“Well, what was your original question?”

“First off, I just asked you it 26 seconds ago, so, surely you remember.  Second, regardless, you originally asked what the original question meant, so don’t bother worrying about the original question, just my explanation.”

“Well, what is your explanation?”

“I just told you my explanation right before this round robin of redundancy.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“Redundancy?”

“No, I’m not an idiot.  What does that comment suppose to mean?”

“Well, if you know what redundancy means, than the comment should make sense.”

“Are you being an asshole?”

“No, I’m just trying to ask you one question and now, 3 minutes later, we’re talking in circles about nonsense.”

“Well, you don’t have to be sarcastic.  Just ask what you want to ask.”  “I Already Did!!!”

“Well, I don’t remember what you asked.  Ask me again.”

To which I usually answer, “Are you an adult?”

“What’s that suppose to mean?”

“You clearly are not an idiot, because we wouldn’t be friends.  Did I make a mistake?”

“In being friends with me or did you ask the wrong question?”

At which point I end up telling the person, “You’re a fucking idiot” and they get mad at me for being an asshole and giving them the run-around with all these ridiculous questions which, mind you, they have been asking ME.

Now, here’s where everyone (anyone) reading this will begin to hate me because, though I have no intention of stereotyping, I find myself usually having this type of a conversation (if you could call it that) with women.  I am not ragging on women, because I love women.  And, for some reason, I also subscribe to the theory that although men are the stronger of the sexes, women are the more intelligent.  Which then gets me thinking and makes me want to ask, “Women, do you just not listen to us or have I been wrong all along?”

I am being completely serious.  Men, on a whole, have such a negative perception of women.  Men look at women as sex objects, men look down on women and, being raised around women, I am always the first person to come to the defense of women.  But you make it so damn difficult sometimes.  Help me out.  Help yourself out.  Don’t go getting all pissy and defensive.  Take criticism, because I write this with honest and open intentions.  When I ask you a question, that question means EXACTLY what the words within the question, when put together, mean.

There is a quote from the movie AS GOOD AS IT GETS.  Jack Nicholson’s character is getting into an elevator at his agent’s and the receptionist stops him and asks, “How do you write women so well?”  He answers with, “I think of a man, and I take away reason and accountability.”  Maybe I  am just stubborn, but I have refused my entire life to believe that this statement is true and yet, example proves, time and again, that women are intent on proving that line right.  What’s the deal?  I’m on your side.  Just use your common sense, please…

changing the world

Here is a poem that will change the world

It is not about love

nor is it political in nature

nothing about the history of hypocrisy

or the hypocrisy of the hipsters who have

taken over for no real reason but hypocrisy

There are no strange lands, magical creatures or garden gnomes

Alliteration, metaphors and onomatopoeia

will be suspended for the next few lines and pages

as will all strife to pour out my soul senselessly for strangers

(that’s really the last of it)

Yearning will cease

Anger tempered

Jealousy forgiven

Depression suppressed

After all, the world cannot change two dimensionally

 

Kings do not exist in this poem

No hierarchies, oligarchies or comics named archie

Fascism, rainbows, democracy, natural disasters

all sacred gods we have create are believed in no more

This, for the sake of worldly adjustment

Eliminated are all sunroofs, all windows, all screen doors

and equally

al mosquitoes, all lightening, all air cooling units

Movies are banned for forcing upon us alternate realities

Artists will skin the paint from their canvases

and displace it to hide the doors of the markets

so that the bells will ring in the financial corridors no more

Grammar, dots, slashes, swoops and spelling

do not matter in the least bit

(period)

No more jokes

Forget about mail, electronic or owl post

no more phone fax telegram wire-on-a-can

in fact

in this world

communication will halt for all but present company

 

Roads have been deemed unnecessary

ships may not be larger than a raft

planes have forgotten how to fly

unless carried on the backs of migrating birds

Taken away is the nostalgia of yearning times

as well as the yearning for new nostalgic memories

Synthesized music and food will not be tolerated

Pollution of any and all varieties

whether it be verbal sewage or toxic sludge

will be stripped from every crack of intention

In addition, all resources will be buried back into the earth

 

There is no structure

(if indeed it is going to change the world)

Buildings to rubble to dust to mud

 

This poem is not about religion or zealots

abortion, death, torture are removed from its boundaries

Opinions do not matter here

facts never existed

roe models have no part to play

all bridges lead to the horizon

and any point forgotten

may be added

let us begin

 

here is a poem that will change the world…

 

 

 

af

a writing from bourbon st

the street

the jazz

the music

all these diggalicious people jammin’ the jive

the inspiration

the cliché

the clarity

i see it, i dig it

four sips of katrina

i understand

lives get shattered and rebuilt

in a place like this

flooded and reborn, as i am now becoming

checking my mind at the door

my body to the gypsy guarding the closet

 

the woman in white keeps looking over

wondering what i am writing

what i am doing in the corner like cassady

sweating, grinding teeth

admired in sal’s paradise

fondly detaching

dislocating body from breath

life from dream

delusion from thought

lying on this marble

licking the chops of the legends

the lucky creatures

born into this imaginary utopia

blowing beside the Christ Buddha

ass fucking euphoria and refusing to cum

cause this drug’s too good to waste

hurtling through time

on a roofless yellow school bus

finger licking

the black

the blonde

the decapitated

this ain’t your Disneyland version

of hurricane Cajun blues

where the second floors store

the papier-mâché facades

this is the history

as real as teeth sinking into raw flesh

 

crack of a bullwhip

now god’s in on the party

bringing a downpour of celestial sweat

deadly streaks of manifested electricity

and i am in the corner

grinning like lucifer

plunging through the purity of lunacy

 

if i were ever to be exorcised

tonight is the night

i have succumb to the wrath of atomic energy

the writhing rapture of nirvana

open your mouth

take it

i’ll be pouring these words

bourbon chasers

for as long as i can go

 

 

 

af