Shoot the Freak

August Kleinzahler

Shoot the freak Cold wind, boardwalk nearly empty You know you wanna

A cluster of hip-hop Lubavitch punks, shirt tails out, talking tough You shoot him

he don’t shoot back Keeper-flatties thrashing in buckets, out there on the pier

Shoot the freakin’ freak A regular family of man out there, fishing for fluke

and blues in that wind How you gonna build memories Everything shut down

or gone Let the lady have a try Sponge Bob, Spookerama, Luna Park

Shoot ’im in the head the Mighty Atom, Thunderbolt, Wonder Wheel

He likes it when you shoot ’im in the face Surf House, Astroland, Shutzkin’s

knishes, A real live human target ‘Hungry for Fun’, fried clams

Everybody’s gonna ‘Bump yo’ ass, bump bump bump yo’ ass’

You know you wanna You know you wanna You know you wanna

And that’s when we saw him, him, 120 million records sold worldwide

walking across the sand ‘It’s him, it’s him’ Like a god, with that hair

What does he do to keep it like that Looking good still, tall, slim, creased slacks

handmade Italian boots, a black goddess on his arm, like an older version of that chick

on Miles’s Sorcerer album, wow The camera crew running all around them, frantic

He’s waving his arm towards the ocean, telling her how it used to be

how it used to be when he was growing up close by, in Brighton Beach

OhmyGodOhmyGod Sweet Caroline, HollyHoly, You Don’t Bring Me Flowers

the duet with you know who, the two of them in the choir together at Lincoln High

the 1992 Christmas special, the White House concert, the time he met Lady Di

(‘a great person, just a fabulous person, a real human being’)

I mean how good is this, really, I mean really, seriously, how good is this