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Postmodern Village
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Culture Stock
by Charles V. Gustavsen

The recycling of the
Vulture Capitalists
Circling overhead
Marks the helical
Trajectory of the
Posthistorical
Chain Store
Food Chain.

The death of an idea
Nourishes an ideology.
The death of ideology
Feeds the marxetplace.

Scavengers pick through
The stone-washed remains
To find the marketable
Shred of sub-culture.

The Means of Consumption
Must belong to the whole
Marketplace.

Leeches Without Borders
Don't discriminate --
This spring it's Grozny Grunge
And Belfast Bohemian.
It's Spicy Cardamom Tremors
At Curry Bell,
Wearing new brand
Bell bottoms
At one of twelve
Balmy Beirut locations.
It's Martyr's Mountain at
Disney's Jihad Oasis.
Micky Milosevic looks cool
In Serbian Chic.

The Vultures-Come-Johnny
Soar into Cybertown
On columns of hot air.
Frontier Famished,
They can't wait
For the natural course.
Grabbing fledglings
By the gaping maw, they
Climb to the top of the
Thermal Exchange
And drop their flightless
Lunch portfolios
Down through the bubble
To the unimproved street
And wonder
Behind slitted eyes
As they dive on
The paltry shreds
Of corpus
Why they hadn't used
Their immature,
Unfeathered wings.

Seattle anarchist
Marsmouth post-cool
Rules for 15 seconds
As the endangered
Southern California Condors
Scrap over the last
Bits of unpackaged tripe.

Meanwhile,
The Spiralectic that
Buries History
Proves
That though
Empires Rise and Fall,
Fallen Imperialism will Rise
Again and again.

More Charles V. Gustavsen this issue:
Portrait of the Artist as a Blocked Artery
Banned Name
Selections from the "Intellectual Properties" Series
Shrinkwrap
Social Contract
Found Poem