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W. Todd Kaneko and Amorak Huey

Slash in Drag

Short step from here to Cher:take off the black hat, flash

a little leg, thigh muscles,belt buckles, sex appeal,

slit up the side revealingonly everything you want revealed:

your inscrutable tattoosbut every darling diva knows

there’s no room foryour secrets on stage, every boy knows

the taste of want:a little liner keeps eyes

honest and a hint of blushsaying fever saying love

saying I am/who I am.

Slash Buys a Gun

Self-preservation is the only music
that makes sense.
If a man can hold all
that power
in his hand, why wouldn’t he?

Sometimes a man does things
he does not believe
in. Sometimes
the staking of a claim
is all that matters.

Some men are hardwired
to claim what territory they see.
If a memory refuses
to leave his lyrics alone
he has been taught to indulge it.

If someone asks
to touch his hair
or his arms or his flesh
he has learned to say yes.
But some notes leave him vulnerable.

Some crowds encroach.
Some bottles go empty quicker.
Some hungers do not abate.
It is a stone in his fist,
this heavy metal.

Slash Stands at the Top of Havasu Falls, Arizona

Music rises / hunger floats. All else
drops to the bottom of whatever depths

you’re imagining. In one version
of this moment, this rock too hot

for bare feet, I will jump too soon,
hat and sunglasses vanishing.

In another, I will learn to fly / learn
whether axe cleaves stone / how deep

a body can submerge. In yet another
I am alone, always / the surface rising fast,

my reflection jagged in the froth.
To fall is to sing is to live is to die

is to love. My fingers have made these
notes for you. If you memorize them,

you might understand what I want,
what I am saying to you / always you.

➥ Kaneko Bio

➥ Huey Bio