Disappointed and Appalled: An Open Letter to the New York Times

Good day, 

This won’t make it to anyone except an unmonitored email generating standard responses or the journalism student interning for less than minimum wage, but hey, what the hell?

I wanted to provide feedback to the New York Times, as a relatively long time reader of several years. I abhor NYT’s coining of the recent political cooperation between Russia, China, and Iran as “the new axis.” I know you did that because scaring people into reading makes you money. Its shock value surpasses the daily basic click-bait bombarding your readers, thus winning today’s battle in viewership. 

While I maintain you have the right to make money, you do not have the right to assist in building the scaffolding of a new war – worldwide or other. Americans do not want another war, and do not need another war. Likely, you took some money on the side from an interested lobbying group to print that out. Or perhaps an NYT executive rubbed shoulders with LD, L3 Harris, or other profiteers of death and destruction this weekend at the golf course and they caught you at a time where NYT needed to pad the bottom line.  

Either way, your rhetoric in this instance is immoral. What our people want and need are basic human rights and a redistribution of wealth. After decades at war, our middle class has been demolished, our relationship with the world community dissolves, and our planet smolders both literally and figuratively. Until your competitors go back to printing Roe v. Wade, you won’t go back to covering the loss of human rights because you feed on fresh dissent, not on moral principle. You won’t talk about wealth disparity until you need to save face either. 

Still, I plead, at least do not so flippantly toss around the concept of world war 3 as if hundreds of thousands of civilians as collateral and thousands of America’s poor as soldiers don’t stand to lose their lives because of it. 

Their deaths are on your hands now. 

Sincerely, 
Josh

salient

I listen.

It’s my job not to pay attention, but I listen.
I like to hear them laugh
and enjoy each other.
I love their stories and their snores through
a well-earned nap.

I like to hear their families say,
“Jacob turns eight this year.”
Actually,
that’s Carl you’re thinking of,
but that’s okay.

I weep inside for
their breakup’s, their hard times,
their mom’s sick.
They piece my heart back together
when they ask their
other
if they’ve eaten. They called
just to ask that and if
they could pick anything up.

IDKWNTHT, but,

Do you ever wonder,
in a million voices
screaming at you;
hey,
why am I such a loser
piece of garbage?
And you know,
you know,
it’s coming from somewhere -
past, present,
whatever.
Then you realize, 
it’s just one voice:
it’s just yours. 
Even as you write
you know
you know
you can never share this
because relatable trauma only,
please.

down

I catch myself wanting

to break this bottle
over the teeth
of the fence directly left -
to sit and cry
a little,
but I’d just go back in
and buy another.
Also, I gave up crying
for lent,
permanently.
Hit one on the first floor,
because my muscle memory
says, “down.”
Have I really become so afraid
of intimacy that I’d sabotage
anything resembling
just so I could go get let
down.
How that bell rings
around my head:
You have it in you to die,
coward,
but not to live.
You’re lucky my guilt
outweighs my disgust.

No Shows

Nah that’s cool,
shrugging lazily
and only half joking. 
Several seconds pass,
many long-winded
metaphors, and
eight god damn
whiskey sours later....

Like eating grapes 
off the vine. It
tastes less enjoyable, 
but overwhelmingly
natural. 
Like a coke dealer on 
a netflix binge:
three days with no sale,
in love with the 80’s,
pass the ice. 

I spent that time
listening
for someone to yell,
“Stop!”
Dispassionately poised
for an assault on
my character
to my back
and everything else 
to my face. 
Nothing happened,
but dammit beg,
for the question you
already know:
the fleeing happiness,
asking instead
for accomplishment
and society’s benefit.

h i h

Now and then?  
More like: 

all the time,

everywhere,

all at once. 

That sounds like
the most British thing 
I've heard.
The only thing, 
honest, 
and you should be
honest.
 
Tell me how to get
there
and I swear to you,
by sould,
by blood,
by iron,
we leave. 

Well, did you find
a bowl or not?
Have you lost your mind?
Your head sloshes
full of soup.
Consider that,
your eye 
half eaten by the falcon,
Horus.  
Maggots wriggling about
the lens - 
have you no shame? 
Nothing to see here,
not since I lost my eye,
after all. 

Cheap talk

What does that even mean?
You cannot have your cake
and have it eaten too. 
It takes two to tango, 
honey,
and talk is cheap. 
So, I speak by the hour,
and pass collection 
when the hook penetrates
your soft, upper palate.