stoned to death

In my country, getting “stoned to death”
is a personal challenge you take on at a party,
something you default to out of boredom,
an escape from everything that’s been bothering you
like your favorite TV will-they-won’t-they couple refusing to get together
after 10 seasons of the same old bantering,
rewritten lines repeating until one hit, or two, or three,
or fifteen in one night leaves you feeling
like you just might become a television yourself,
because telepathy has always been your specialty.

It’s your favorite party trick,
being able to predict the same-old happenings
with monosyllabic prophecies like, “Word.”
Or, “Dope.”
Or saying “Let’s chill hard,” before you take another toke,
passing pipe to the right because the Leftists
you hang out with are amused by the irony.
Next, fill your head with the symphonies
that erupt from toilet seats when you can’t tell
if you’re breathing anymore since you’re cross-faded
and fading away much too soon.

This party is your funeral,
your friends court jesters and mad hatters dancing on your grave
because that’s how you said you would have wanted it…
Your funeral…
Because, in the end, all conversations circle back to death,
because, quite frankly, it’s the only profound thing you have
to talk about besides whether or not Ted will find his
one true love in this season before you remember you forgot
to call your mother back today and think to yourself how sad
she’d be if you had actually died,
but really…you’re just stoned to death.

It’s nothing you can’t handle,
nothing you haven’t seen before,
nothing to be afraid of.
Death is nothing to be afraid of.
Your mother is not afraid of anything
because she’s at home getting stoned too.

Marijuana is the spoonful of sugar that helps the evening
news go down easy, the spoonful of lovin’ in the backseat
of your car, the arch in your back when you’re just pretending
he’s the one for you since he’s already inside of you
‘cuz he’s stoned too, just a stone cold fox
filled with feathers since he’s flown the cuckoo’s nest
after eating all the eggs ‘cuz dude’s got the munchies
for some crunchy, yolky goodness…

The radio starts playing Bob Dylan ‘cuz you bumped it
in the midst of bumping uglies
but his song fits the mood so you keep on playing it.
His out-of-tune voice puts sunglasses on both of you
before you take another hit singing,
“Eeeeverybody must get stooooned…”

Grim Reaper starts laughing when he realizes
how seriously other people are taking it,
nostalgic for the good old days when stoning meant
villagers gathering around some poor soul and ACTUALLY STONING THEM…
Like throwing rocks and shit.
Until there’s nothing left of Joe Dirt or Jane Sinner
besides a bloody mess that stinks when sunlight hits it,
because Honor smells like dead bodies, apparently.

Meanwhile, Western Civilization turns
its sights on getting higher and higher,
packing Honor into a bowl and smoking it.
The end result still stinks, but in a different way…
a smell more associated with Reggae than manslaughter,
a stench that makes you feel happy to be alive
until you get paranoid enough to imagine both realities
existing at the same time, until you realize that
both realities actually DO exist at the same time,
and, suddenly, the smell that’s coming from your pipe
stinks like dead bodies and you feel sick again.

But then all YOU have to do is leave the party,
tell yourself that you should maybe smoke a little less
weed next time, until you remind yourself
that the people who are actually getting stoned to death
are a lot like you except their nightmare can’t be helped
by their sobriety…


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