Eternal Life

I don’t wanna end up DOA

Until I embed my DNA

In the world around me

 

I don’t wanna die like my father

In a hospital bed for over a year

With no idea what’s wrong

His body filled up with water

And like any drowning man

After a while

He just gave up

 

I don’t wanna die like my mother

Who knew exactly what was wrong with her body

Tests

Charts

Doctor’s reports

The script was written and she followed it close

A pillar of churches

Although she believed in none

The city named a park for her when she was gone

 

I don’t wanna die

Like the people I killed in Vietnam

Mother Father Sister Brother

Day after day

A bullet with their name on it

To them my name was Angel of Death

But I had no wings

I was just a scared teenager

From a town they never heard of

The only job I could find

Was killing people

 

I don’t wanna die like my father-in-law

Pulled up to a stop sign

In year two of Clinton presidency one

All of a sudden he had company

A homeless kid and his girl

Who were at the end of their rope

All of a sudden they let go of it

Carjack

Throat slit

Oh shit

It’s all over

 

Nine years later…

Metallica’s playing a show at San Quentin!

Hard music

Hard time

Hard music

Without rhyme

Metallica’s playing a show at San Quentin

In the yard that day

Was the killer of the father of my wife

Doing life

Hard music

Hard time

Hard music

Without rhyme

Metallica’s singer

He says

“Everyone is born good

Everyone’s got the same size soul

We’re here to connect with that”

 

It seemed like he was getting ready to quote the Bible but he didn’t

“Vengeance is mine,” saith the Lord

 

“Vengeance is mine,” saith the Lord

Sometimes that’s hard to live by

Sometimes you don’t even want to try

But you have to

Because

Because if the richest country on earth

Gave everyone a home

My father-in-law would be alive today

 

Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night

And think about

DJ Dusk

I wonder

After he hurled his body

Off that sidewalk to save his lady

Did he have time to see the car coming

Did he realize what was about to happen

Did he say to himself

“I should’ve stayed on the sidewalk!”

I’ll never know

But if you ever heard Dusk spin

If you ever went with him to the projects

To turn banging into art

Then you know that when Dusk made his last spin

When he turned his body to face that drunk driver

His heart was as pure as the driven snow

 

But I don’t wanna go out like that

 

Rocky Dunn had a good life

Ninety-three years old

Died peaceful in his sleep

Left children

Grandchildren

Great grandchildren

All over this world

When I spoke at his funeral

I couldn’t help but smile

 

But I don’t wanna go out like that

 

I don’t wanna leave

I don’t want my friends to have to grieve

Until

Until I’ve built a bridge

And everything I’ve ever learned

And everything I’ve ever felt

Has made it to the other side

 

I don’t wanna end up DOA

Until I embed my DNA

In the world around me

 

Now I’ve been preaching

And I’ve been reaching

For a long, long time

So…

Am I ready to die?

I know I’m supposed to push out my chest

And shout out an answer like “Oh, hell yes!”

 

But perjury’s a felony

And this is no time to lie

So when you ask:

Am I ready to die?

I have to say

Not. Quite. Yet.

 

If you make your mark in this short life

Than you can have life eternal

And I’m willing to die for it

But

Not. Quite. Yet. 

 

When it’s time for me to go

I’m gonna be able to stay

When it’s time for me to go

I’m still gonna have my say

 

Cuz I’m not gonna end up DOA

Until I embed my DNA

In the world around me

 

 

Poem / 2006