an idiot blog for an idiot world

a song about a boxer

with one comment

most of the time i don’t remember. what it feels like. when a fist collides with a face, the force of it, the power, the crunch of bones, the thick flattening of skin as it spreads underneath hard, sharp knuckles to rip and bleed like an oilspring. i remember what it tastes like, your tongue heavy in your mouth like a dead slug. i remember what it smells like, sweat and blood and fear. but mostly i don’t remember what it feels like.

afterwards, when nursing bruises and wounds, i think back, remembering what my body tells me then: fight, it says. you fool, are you going to let them win? they who laughed at you, they who mocked you secretly, they who said you didn’t matter, they who let you down. fight, you fool. fight as if your life depended on it, as if every breath you take might be your last, as if every ounce of being in you is alive only and for this moment. fight, you fucker. fight until you can’t move, until your nose is filled with blood and broken and you can feel holes in the gaps of where your teeth used to be, fight until every muscle screams in agony and refuses to answer, until your eyes are bloody. but i don’t remember what it feels like.

i only prepare for one fight. every night, the same fight. it is a fight i began from birth. it is not a fight i chose but it is a fight i fight. the fight has no beginning, i only came into its middle, and it has no end. it is a fight we all fight. sometimes i am pitted against you and sometimes you are pitted against you. there are other combinations, an infinite actually but each fight is one fight. it is always one fight. and each fight is different, the fight changes with each failure and each victory, each knockout and each collapse. but each fight is one fight. it is a fight we all fight. there are no winners or losers, only victories and losses, and an infinity in between. the fight has one rule. there is one grand champion. the grand champion cannot be defeated. in the end, he always wins. there is no fighting him. this is the only rule. he appears in our dreams often. sometimes as falling from an airplane, sometimes as alzheimer’s slow, certain forgetting, sometimes as a cold, nauseating, invincible, always proliferating cancer, other times as lethargy, wondrous lethargy that sucks all joy down its black hole of endless hours looking for something you know doesn’t exist. lethargy that turns into something more insidious, a poison seeping through your veins, a toxin fastening itself to your neurons, spreading thoughts that whisper incessantly of expectations and a failure to live up to them, the chains of family, the world and the social contract, the pressure from a society that values the appearance of your physicality over its actual functionality or even your brain, not being good enough,ever. and there he is. the grand champion. in every noose that tightens around a broken neck, every poison that eats through your stomach walls like an acid, every razor that zips down a naked wrist, every 8-ball laced with rat poison, and that last bottle of sweet sweet whiskey that sends that last liver cell crumbling into nothingness. in the end, he (or was it a she?) is there for us all.

the bruise it heals. there is a stinging now and then, just to remind me that its there. but more and more, there is an emptiness, a feeling of missing what was once there. each time, the hole feels bigger, slightly, just slightly. and still i don’t remember what it feels like.


Come to the door, Ma, and unlock the chain
I was just passin’ through and got caught in the rain
There’s nothin’ I want, nothin’ that you need say
Just let me lie down for a while and then I’ll be on my way

I was no more than a kid when you put me on the Southern Queen
With the police on my back I fled to New Orleans
I fought in the dockyards and with the money that I made
And the fight was my home and any blood was my trade

Baton Rouge, Ponchatoula, and La Fayette town
Well they paid me the moon, Ma, to knock the men down
I did what I did, when it come easily
Restraint and mercy were always strangers to me

I fought champion Jack Thompson in a field full of mud
Rain poured through the tent to the canvas and mixed with our blood
In the twelfth, I slipped my tongue over my broken jaw
And I stood over him, pounded his blooded body into the floor

Well the bell rang and rang, still I kept on
‘Til I felt my glove leather slip ‘tween his skin and bone
And the women and the money came fast, in the days I lost track
The women red, the money green, but the numbers were black
I fought for the men in their silk suits to lay down their bets
Well I took my good share, Ma, and I had no regret

I took the fixed staid hombre with Big Diamond Don
From high in the rafters I watched myself fall
So he raised his arms, my stomach twisted, and the sky it went black
I stuffed my bag with their good money, and I never looked back
Understand me, and Ma, every man plays a game
If you know anyone different, then speak out his name

Well Ma, if my voice, now you don’t recognize
And just open the door and look into your dark eyes
I ask of you nothin’, not a kiss, not a smile
Just open the door and let me lie down for a while

Now the grey rain is fallin’ and my ring fighting’s done
So in the work fields and alleys, I take them who’ll come
If you’re a better man than me then just step to the line
And show me your money and speak out your crime
There’s nothin’ I want, Ma, nothin’ that you need say
Just let me lie down for a while and then I’ll be on my way

Well tonight in the shipyard, a man draws a circle in the dirt
Like I always do, I move to the centre and I take off my shirt
I study him for the cuts, the scars, the pain man no time can erase
I move hard to the left and I strike to the face


Written by Pranaya

February 15, 2012 at 11:46 PM

One Response

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  1. amen!


    February 16, 2012 at 1:49 AM

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