From when you came has much more weight
Than whence you came. Let me relate
How this my generation thinks
And acts, regardless where it sinks
Its roots. We’re fighting to survive:
There is no country where we thrive.
In Russia there were few resources
For the latchkey kids. Strong forces
Led adults to work outside
Their homes — not stated force of pride,
Of ideals or of women’s lib:
Each sought just to make life as good
As they knew in their childhood
As westward of the iron curtain
Things were much the same, for certain,
But the people named great causes
As the reasons for the losses
Of their childrens’ access to
The close-knit lives their elders knew.
The boomers are my favorite crowd.
Indulged as kids, they grew up loud:
Complaints some endlessly can spout
But almost none stick their necks out
To uphold crusades they claim matter
As their cash they’d rather scatter
’Mongst the law firms they retain
To drag each other down the drain
For reasons that defy all logic:
All misplaced ambition’s tragic.
Pray tell us just what need have we
To practice practicality
When our old world-reclaiming visions
We gave up as superstitions.
Those who earn our highest praise
Are neither fish nor flesh: they’ve ways
Of getting much for very little,
All deadbeatly, lucky, brittle.
Now that we face harder times
Who’ll be worth these humble rhymes?
Those deadbeats who just currently
Seem most worthy, or act thusly?
A few scarce boomers are enough
To work until their hands grow tough
In pulling all the others through.
I much admire those scarce few.
The years before the boomers came
Know for whom world stress would frame
A need to serve the needs of others:
Parents, teachers, elder brothers
In the trench or on the roam
Earning bread while these stayed home
Since they were yet young to fight
Or labor hard by day and night,
Hence they grew up as young helpers.
The good times made them connoisseurs
In the art of helpfulness
Some perform with their noblesse
To the point they help to death
Anyone who’s drawing breath
And from whom the things they may
Want are something they can’t say.
Since that’s so, they’ve learned to pamper
Their own egos. It’s a damper
To them, washing their own hair,
Getting out to breathe the air:
They crave air conditioned cars
Even bound for nowhere, ’cause
What comes naturally to them
Is the fear that rations slim
As does help from all those who
Work too hard for gains too few.
All of the above is plain
Yet it hardly can explain
Why one’s month and day of birth
Mean more than some say they’re worth:
Ares of outspoken pluck,
Taurus stodgy, sometimes stuck,
Gemini as light as air,
Cancer all too well aware,
Leo noble, full of heart,
Virgo could well pick apart,
Libra’s balance of all things,
Scorpio’s insightful stings,
Sagittarius aimed high,
Capricorn, chary ally,
Bright Aquarius all funky,
Pisces dreaming all away.
What then of one’s year of birth?
This design one might unearth:
Asian yearly natal signs
Run reverse of my last rhymes;
Thus the Tiger is as Ares
And the Rabbit is as Pisces,
While the Snake, with cardinality
Of the Earth, realizes where to be,
Though the Asians oft note some
Subtleties, this rule of thumb
Seems worth more investigation —
Why this year/month correlation? —
Yet there’s such invalidation
Of all of astrology
That I hardly can foresee
A time when we shall understand
The influence that stars command
On each personality
Since we’re so sure we’re all free.