oily, seedy provocation relents
for the tongue in groove machine thing
and only then with a stutter-step
that's how lived-in arias are born
and punkily careful recklessness
dies. this ain't new york or l.a.
being painted in thick, toxic strokes.
the romantic images are better,
an idol pounding back another
party cup, forehead bleeding,
getting buried in the streets
among hangers-on, junkies,
confused cabbies, bored cops.
but before that did-up death croak,
he carefully sculpted his hair
behind stage, in the glass
of a pinball machine.