When Words Meant to be Spoken Are Bottled Up For Too LongBy Rich Ferguson
January 05, 2013
When words meant to be spoken are bottled up for too long, those words stop showering and shaving. Crank speed metal at four a.m. Carve lines into your forehead with rusty knives. Illegally park in handicapped spaces, create fake ads on Craigslist. Those bottled-up words trade up for down, left for right, dropkick you into the shacklebone zone. They smile in public, beat you in private. Fill your mouth with rains and hurricanes, pee a circle around your soul and mark it for extinction.
When words meant to be spoken are bottled up, they make rotgut wine, start lying about their age, slap a bumper sticker across your ass proclaiming: Graduate of the 12-Step Program for Underachievers. Those bottled-up words French kiss barrels of loaded guns. Become chalk outlines on the streets of reason. Leave you stripped and abandoned like a stolen car. Rewrite your life in third person blank-eyed verse. They smoke too much, tip too little, forget the city of their birth. Collect countless coroner’s reports and mold them into your shadow, then nail it to your feet.
Bottled-up words hog the sheets when you’re trying to sleep. Babble static. Drop bombs of chronic confusion. Grind your teeth into tombstones, scribble obits into your every breath. They desecrate instead of elevate. Tie your thoughts in a noose, hang common sense at high noon.
When words meant to be spoken are bottled up for too long, they stamp your life: Return to Sender. Trash talk you from heel to horizon, yet always speak your name and credit card number loud and clear when checking into death’s hotel.
Reading your work always feels like coming home somehow. Raw and beautiful and dangerous as ever, Rich.
Thanks for reading, Erika. And thanks so much for the kind words. Can’t wait to meet in 3D!
There should be a voting mechanism on TNB for how well we like a post. Instead of stars or likes or thumbs up, it can be little Balloon Boys 1-5. And I give this five Balloon Boys. I second Erika above. I love reading (or hearing or seeing) your work, Rich. Always nice to swing by TNB and see that hat of yours in the left corner.
Thanks so much for reading, brother. And thanks for the kind words as well. Hope you have a fantabulous 2013.
I love reading your work.
You shine, Rich.
Thanks for sending me over here, Ashley. Gorgeous as always, Rich. And so true. Words that must be spoken will eat you from the inside out. Thanks for this.
Thanks for reading, Gloria! And thanks for the kind words. I might make it up to your neck of the woods this year to play a show. We’ll see how things go with the new CD. Would be great to cross paths. All the best to you and yours.
As always, thanks so much for reading, Ashley. And thanks for the kind words. Hope you and yours are having a wonderful new year.
Lordie. Thanks. For scaring the crap out of me. And hopefully scaring some important shit out of me, too. Beautiful, great.
Thanks for reading, Rachel! And thanks for the kind words. But I hope that I don’t scare too much shit out of you. That could get quite messy for all parties involved. Take care.
Five magic balloons
in a starry sky
& chronic bombs
Nice one, Brother Blaine. Great to have you here at the party. Hope you’ve been well.
It is my pleasure,sir.
Your book is on the way
& I am excited for you.