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Michael Gregory: Two Songs (audio and text)

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Running time: 2 minutes each

Songs composed and performed by Michael Gregory

Copyright 2021 Michael Gregory


NO MORE WAR

I went to the drugstore and I looked inside
Saw my good gal had upped and died
Hung my head down and I cried
Don’t want no more war

Can’t drink this water can’t breathe this air
Can’t eat this food that’s been shot up to here
Can’t walk on the ground with cement everywhere
Don’t want no more war

You say what you’re doing’s for the good of the race
All that you’re doing is trying to save face
Please look at yourself and get off my case
Don’t want no more war

You drive down the road with your gun in a rack
You sleep in a doorway with an old gunny sack
Looks to me like it’s time we get back
Don’t want no more war

I walk in the mountains I walk to the sea
I walk cross the desert I walk through the trees
Nothing manmade makes as much sense to me
Don’t want no more war

Going to find me a river build me a farm
Raise up a roof with my right arm
Out where nobody will deal me no harm
Don’t want no more war

Let’s pick up this mess and try not to waste
Let’s grow some food we can smell and can taste
We’ll learn to make love without so much haste
Don’t want no more war

East is east and west is west
I’ve got no idea which one is the best
Any place is ok where a body can rest
Don’t want no more war


STILL TODAY

Next door the Doctor and the Lawyer
Haggle each other down
While the Actress and her Baby
Entertain the American Clown
While in his office up from Harlem
The Professor wears a gown
The lights go out all over the place
And Papa’s lost his crown

I remember in the forties
Watching the faces turn brown
In photographs of history books
People caught underground
There were couples in the sewers
And everything was known
Of how their deaths occurred to them
And how their fear was shown

On the streets above the cellar
Silence ruled the town
And the shadows never wavered
And no insect made a sound
And everyone was dying
And some they never found
From the burning at the center
To the burnout all around

Still today our bombs are falling
On a land across the sea
While the eyes of starving children
Beg to us from our TV
But still we vote for murder
Pay taxes to insanity
While the warlords make their profit
And the killers still go free


Michael Gregory‘s most recent books include Pound Laundry (Red Dragonfly Press, 2020) and Mr America Drives His Car (Post-Soviet Depression Press, 2013). An internationally-engaged environmental activist, since the early 70s Gregory has lived off-grid in the high desert of southeast Arizona ten miles from the US-Mexico border, the setting for much of his writing. 

Poet Michael Gregory Contemplating the New Day (source: Smithsonian Magazine; photo by Heidi Dehncke-Fisher)

3 comments on “Michael Gregory: Two Songs (audio and text)

  1. Barbara Huntington
    July 4, 2021

    Took me back to my youth. Seems all our singing and marching didn’t make a dent.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ken Boe
      July 6, 2021

      I think you made more than a dent, your values and artifacts became part of the culture, and even on the right much from the 60’s era is culturally imbued and taken for granted. What’s going on now is reactionary, and well funded. For instance, we see it was the fossil fuel industry that marketed subversively the idea that climate change is a hoax. That’s something to come up against as poets, we must remember, as I like to say, that all beliefs are cultural artifacts, and in that we are a marketing/counter-intelligence culture. How do we manipulate that as artists and poets? Well, for one, Michael Gregory has here, but we should all experiment with that under our own ideas and visions, sometimes going back, sometimes looking around, sometimes looking forward. Is this a poetry writing prompt here? Help yourselves to it.

      Liked by 2 people

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