The Times They Are a Changing’: Summer Late 60’s, Death & Transfiguration Blues by Alan Catlin

Brush cuts and slacks transformed
into long hair & bell bottoms, jeans
patched over worn through holes,
ripped fabrics becoming functional
art forms, wearable works in progress,
underage drinking pints of cheapest
Vodka available to young men, drinking
it straight or with warm Coke mixtures
replaced by roll your own dabs,
communal water pipes, filtration systems
containing bottom shelf white wine,
sharing a smoke of many dreams, deep
sixing beers, wild laughter in the dark,
near hysteria, wired on acid rock, protest
songs, folks singers socially aware &
Vietnam no longer some way out there,
unimaginable place in the back of stamp
albums under French possessions but a
subject for subterranean homesick blues,
songs of sorrow and lamentation for picket
lines & protests, summers of love drowning
in blood, an alcoholic purple haze, secret
agent’s orange, mushroom like clouds, what
did it matter?  What was that sound? Draft
riots and FBI files, Big Brother & His
Holding Company, register with your draft
board, pick a number & die, Uncle Sam
a skeleton with Death Watch Beetle eyes,
a paranoids worst fears realized, up against
a wall mother faker, ‘it’s all over now, baby
blue’, ‘it’s alright now Ma, I’m only bleeding’,’
‘blowing’ in the wind,’ blues.

Alan Catlin
Alan Catlin is the poetry editor of His latest books of poetry are American Odyssey from Future Cycle and Last Man Standing from Lummox Press

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