Poem #5: Big Time

Big Time

My mother found a script while cleaning house about men who commit manly acts. “Big Time.” It opens with dark-haired coffee drinkers, not “Cappuccino Cowboys,” but people who get things done. Don’t mind Fishface – he doesn’t talk much. Stereotypes get three beats to become something else, often other stereotypes. Act One ends on an up note: predictable teetering. The Don’s daughter doesn’t get married because there is no Don. We have to find him – he’ll know what to do. Tony gets offed midway through Act Two. Fade to black, blue and white, white and red. Crooked cops cross rivers on horseback. Impossible explosions save the good-bad guys from the bad-good guys. Mindful looting, but only until they run out of gas. The long con, mistakes, and the F word. Comic blood swells with hinted sunsets, “The Magic Hour.” Louie is the hero until he is not. The elevator scene is tragic, but that’s expected. There are no surprise pregnancies. A boy and a baseball mitt. The mob doesn’t run this town anymore, haven’t you heard? Jewish comedians play the fall. Final Act tensions battle leitmotifs and automatic weapons, the club’s owner out the back door with a suitcase of cash. These are the getaway windows, Louie! Deus ex tyrannis, the mayor stealing the show. Shotguns and snare drums give way to folk song swells, a mysterious waltz, and the final crane shot. Louie didn’t have to go out that way, Chief. Oh, but he did, Charlie. He definitely did.

@NBF 4.16.2009

buildingface

Washington, DC, 2005

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Notes

I did not read the script my mother found this morning, but the first beat gave the whole story away. I was not familiar with the phrase “Cappuccino Cowboy,” but now it’s part of my ever-expanding lexicon. (Apparently it’s an “industry term.”) I would really love my own “getaway windows.” The Godfather series is very good as far as mob movies go, but I also recommend Once Upon a Time in America and The Untouchables, if only for the Morricone scores (he’s closing in on 500 films for his career).

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One Response to “Poem #5: Big Time”

  1. Heylo… you know I read this poem the other day (via your facebook link) and didn’t put together that it was yours, only that I liked it enough to send on to a friend. Now I’m poking around the whole blog, nice project… THE project…

    I’m starting to embrace the possibilities of poetry in my own cache of expressive outlets, toes just skating on the surface of the water so far.

    Brain fizzling — there was something else I was going to say. Oh yeah, earlier, I deleted a two year old gmail draft containing a link to a Georgetown Law page describing Intellectual Property/Entertainment/Technology Law. You didn’t have to convince me not to do law school, it would never have really happened. Still, I thank you for looking out! 😉

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