Link Wray, Live--San Jose

Hot in the Valley. Overtime, hard days.
I am still in stale white shirt, red tie, pager on
stun. I don't
Give me beer give me
a couple of minutes to breathe give me
another fucking beer.

Kid behind the bar is Johnny Rotten oh twenty
years ago on
adrenaline Chicana girl scoring double Tequila shots
injection molded into gold lamee slacks her
shadow leaning back against a flat-black wall
aching just to smash
his empty longneck black eyes mesmerising dumbfucks
stare at her chest stare at her chest stare at her chest Teddy
boys smoking at the end of a beersticky bar pompadours
exactly right dark blue Levis white white crew-necks
exactly right the
woman to my left reminding me of dead
grandmothers flames in her eyes and she is smiling she is
gazing out at something missing forty years
torching something I
can't see it I
haven't eaten in days my breathing
is regular
and deep I close my eyes from time to time and I
am nearly ready. I am nearly ready.

Squeeze through smoke beer smoke heat bodies smoke
more smoke forward to the focal point. Twin Marshalls, black, scuffed,
orange red glow tubes fully warm I smell or dream
the smell of hot brown bakelite sockets resin-core solder
road dust searing on fat fat power triodes
hot shellac crackling ozone power transformers
humming humming
sweet sixty Hertz premonition
plus third harmonic
memories and too fucking right I
am ready

on stage--black wraparound
shades black shirt black boots shiny black leathers
wild black hair gold
crucifix fist
high--I am ready--Torpedoheads backing high
high voltage Surf Punk--I am ready--classic power
trio drums bass lead guitar--I am ready--pick
the red Strat drums moving my guts bass moving my guts
strap it on plug it in black patch cord snaking
back into the maw of the straining black Marshall
volume knob
twist the
red Strat growls squeals fucking screams
at us and the goddamn beautiful beautiful thing
hasn't been stroked yet feeding forward feeding
back I can see the perforated
cones inside the Marshalls stretch and limber up aching
for the night ahead warming
up he is kissing silver fretwork, dancing (look how slender are his
fingers, how they hunger for the wood, hunger
for the wire--remember this remember this remember this
) coaxing
fundamentals first
overtones subharmonics wild wild resonances
without a single pick on steel he is tuning
us--we--he is laughing he is home--we
are ready fuck me we are ready and

suddenly, lovingly, brutally,
exquisite, each chord
barely shy of an arpeggio
each chord white hot dragging
shreds of every amplified note
every note ripped angry loud
from electric six-strings after 1958


the Rumble
the Rumble
the Rumble.

JDP 97/07

Copyright John D Porter © 1997

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