Meaning of the Mob

The Meaning of the Mob.  I say, the Mob, meaning the Definitely Uncertain, Fixed—a liberal form of physics—
or the clotted swarm wallforming brick by brick, a mosaic pattern.      Pick a number, any number, it’s a given.
A given what, you say, a given that, heads together, mindless, will make of a stone’s throw a hard cold pledge—Indivisible, in Mob We Trust.
Meaning the Mob
made of a stone’s throw a lottery-like contest,
one hurl after the next,
snuffing out solitary skull-candles
in the name of making nameless a victim
                                                                        swallowed by sand.
And blood.   And the song sung not unlike syncopated tocks of rockingchair horror-christened,
the chant a band of hands knotted together:
In Mob We Trust . . . In Mob We Trust . . .
circling the victim,
swallowed by sand.   And blood.
And it was black.  It was black and they couldn’t see . . . and the track like that of an animal’s . . . they couldn’t see . . . it was black . . . and they couldn’t see . . . the moon—Mack the Knife, the Fat Pope, the Poet’s Dream—blacked out . . . they couldn’t see . . . so it was only . . . natural.

Lit to burn off black skin, to burn black the chant—we win! we win!—to burn black the black, cuz sin-cleansing be the business of townsfolk
assimilating a godgiven blank,
and black the blues’d but not broken souls stolen from split dawns,
cleaving huddled crying masses,
brothers and sisters adrift in salted storms—
and give us your poor! your huddled masses!—
but so many vessels disappeared never washed ashore.
aflutter on treelimb’s sway,
a savage prop, deformity of art,
shaped by mindless mob
in the shame of God.
Meaning, unclear,
cuz faces meld milky into a blur,
murder repetitively attempted
on Life of Self
identity melt
sharing cold common turf,
lesser themselves they become
closer to None,
the birth of myopic nations,
D.W. Griffith racist,
history’s torn pages—
and in Bethlehem same as Alabama
a blood-born photo-op for the swarm-ready faceless.
treason’s gotta be a no-brainer,
lest the rule of the roost is jeopardized:
lest we cry a million broken cradles
for the Sheperd boy, the blackskinned angels, the crossbearing toy—
of a god, a whim, a fate—
an overwrought lie
sold and bought
                                    down the river
and everybody knows, everybody knows, everybody knows,
all rivers lead to seas,
but how sweet the amnesia
when nobody knows, nobody knows, nobody knows,
the troubles we’ve seen,
on the surface of deepsea oilslickt, clot-heavy,
and holding in its crotch—
a thousand and three grieving mermaids.
everybody knows
nobody knows
who fo sho knows
a fist is an infant afraid to flower:
hour by hour,
the sand’s slip quakes the legs of littleones with boombox-glued-ears, hearing:
                                                You’ve gotta fight the power, you’ve gotta fight the powers that be.
Chuck D. leading the charge of a million-starred march,
walk the talk grind-frictioning sparks,
to start a campaign against
light on dark topfucking.
The mob, meaning
my childhood—
John Gotti on Tuesday nights hitting Tali’s bar at ten o clock to rake the pay pickup,
and across the street stood starry-eyed kids, swooning: look at that leggy blonde on his right arm—that’s the Mob, baby . . . and the threepiece fourgrand suit—that’s the mob, baby . . . and don’t even get me started on the depthlevel of the Don’s loot—that’s the mob, baby….
babyfaced kids on streetcorners, gawking, shaking loose streetlamp lit dreams about gold roads paved, red carpets rolled, and loans unpaid paid back with a bitchslap and pistolwhip.
Those days the mob meant
a better tomorrow,
like baseball stardom or the winning lottery pick—
and these days better tomorrows,
for one and all,
mob mentality’s gotta liberate the link from the chain—
changing the face of the faceless, naming the unnamed—
and in this I wish I could believe,
but the meaning of the mob
is far more complex than wordplay definitions.
And numbers were never my strength.




About John Biscello

Originally from Brooklyn, NY, writer, poet, spoken word performer, and playwright, John Biscello now lives in Taos, New Mexico. He is the author of two novels: Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale and Raking the Dust, and a collection of stories, Freeze Tag. His fiction and poetry has appeared in: Art Times, nthposition, The Wanderlust Review, Ophelia Street, Caper, Polyphony, Dilate, Militant Roger, Chokecherries, Farmhouse, BENT, The 555 Collective, Instigator, Brass Sopaipilla, The Iconoclast, Adobe Walls, Kansas City Voices, and the Tishman Review. His blog--Notes of an Urban Stray--can be read at Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale was named Underground Book Reviews 2014 Book of the Year.
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