blackmail press 18
Gary Beck
Gary Beck's poetry has appeared in dozens of literary magazines. His recent fiction has been published in numerous literary magazines. His chapbook 'The Conquest of Somalia' will be published by Cervena barva Press. His plays and translations of Moliere, Aristophanes, and Sophocles have been produced Off-Broadway.

Give Us Your….

Immigrants generally
have been welcomed,
although not always warmly,
to our accepting shores
and don’t fear the secret police,
unless they run afoul of them.
After a strained interlude
citizenship is acquired
and the next generation go about their business
with full rights and privileges,
except those previously reserved
for members of the oligarchy.
Illegal aliens, however,
are not desirable guests
who were invited to visit,
let alone permanently reside,
and the clamor of pressure groups
to enfranchise illegal entrants
abuses the principles
of our besieged republic.
We are entitled to determine
who we do, or do not want
residing in our land,
and despite latino sympathy
for those drybacks across the border,
we still should regulate admittance
to the fraying American Dream.

Poetry 2005

The guardians of poetry,
mostly self appointed,
produce polished products
that make their universities proud.
Don’t all poets go to college now?
Somehow they’ve managed to convince
a non-discriminating public
that form is more important than content,
style more necessary than substance.
The endless hordes of versifier,
mostly sustained by academia,
have subtracted the elemental fire,
constrained the extremes of emotion,
removed the excess of fervor,
provided well-constructed poems
as substitutes for passion,
that make poetry a desert sameness,
elegant, remote, serene
and infinitely arid.


After many days of cold rain
august Vermont began to dry
despite the loud complaints
from sundry birds
that had not helped one bit.
But sometime after lunch
the sun finally broke through
the tease of clouds
keeping things wet and chilled
and shined just long enough
to factory whistle to work
bees, flies, gnats.

E Pluribus….

In the great experiment
rejected ingredients
from foreign laboratories
were combined arbitrarily,
without the scientific method
and miraculously produced Americans.
It may have been an imperfect process,
nevertheless, the results were….
Historically unique.
Diverse elements were united,
however different their constituent parts,
mostly without the use of force,
and they were incorporated in a system
that actually functioned fairly well.
Then time took its inevitable toll
and corruption outweighed idealism,
fear and suspicion replaced public trust,
separatism became condition normal,
other languages began to supplant english,
citizens were no longer content  to be Americans,
and had to be African-Americans,
or Hispanic-Americans,
and the fabled dream was measured by money.
Alienation became our way,
and the hope of mankind’s future
is now engaged in competition
with a recent awkward entity,
The European Union,
in the possible hope
of a melting pot future.