Beatnik Bob and I were talking
over at Starbucks this morning
about the death of Beatle Bob,
a St Louis character
always fresh on the music scene,
dancing wildly up front at all the shows,
drawing lots of attention to himself.
And then someone brought up
a Facebook page on their phone
where everyone was ripping Bob apart,
saying he was a selfish scoundrel.
It made me feel sick because of a phrase
Chief taught me long ago. It’s something like,
“Non Dice Malum De Mortibus.”

If I’d never heard that phrase—or
even if I’d only heard it in English—
I might have joined the rabid trolls.
But you see the fancy Latin
gave it the aura of a canon. And plus
I always dug Beatle Bob, always
looked for him back in the day.

At any rate, I’m soon off to Walmart
for necessities. I’m running low
on shampoo and body wash. If my
intuition is correct
and the whole world’s soon to end in fire
maybe I shouldn’t
waste my money on that stuff.
Maybe I should get a pizza.

Photo by Fikri Rasyid on Unsplash

Matthew Freeman

Matthew Freeman's seventh book, I Think I'd Rather Roar, was just published by Cerasus Poetry. After largely recovering from schizophrenia, he managed to get his MFA from the University of Missouri-St Louis. He gives readings and teaches workshops around St Louis and can be found on Twitter @FreemanPoet