the red dot

the pursuit of happiness

the government has sold us

is not quite a dog chasing its tail

or a hamster sprinting on a wheel,

but a cat losing its mind

trying to figure out

how to catch the red dot.

The American dream

was an illusion

from day one,

then it became a hologram,

so real you can feel it,

marketed so well

you can buy

into it…

and lord knows

we’ve racked up

tremendous amounts of debt

buying into it all

hook

line

and sinker-

home mortgage…

car payment…

student loan…

a house thats too big,

a car thats not practical

and a degree that hasn’t helped us

in a subject we didn’t like

but were told would help us

get a ‘good job’…

and EVERYTHING else…

but things have not made us

and never will make us

happy

things cannot raise our children

or hug our grandparents left to rot

and die all alone in nursing homes

we cannot find

peace of mind

waiting in long lines

to buy new gagets

and gizmos

these distracting toys

made by girls and boys

and men and women

with no red dots to chase,

just sweating their lives away

to avoid starvation

in places we are socialized

to give less than a fuck about…

We need to realize

that no amount of overtime

will buy us memories

of missed birthday parties

and afternoon walks

to everywhere

and nowhere in particular,

the fancy car will only impress

the wrong type of people

and your children will fight

over it when you die

because they learned

to value things

rather than people

by watching and learning

from you

they will fight over your house,

sue each other over your boat

and never talk again

because grandma only left behind

one diamond ring

when she died

all alone in that nursing home,

and they all want it

beacuse,

whatever it’s worth in dollars,

they spent their whole lives learing

that it’s worth far more than love,

than family,

than humanity,

gramdma’s ring

has become a red dot

but don’t feel too bad,

it’s the realization

of the american dream

now, sure

we ‘like’ our family’s

pictures on the internet

but have grown to love

the sweaty gadgets

and gizmos we use 24/7

more than the humam beings

we see on the screens,

as boring to us now

as balls of yarn

must seem

to any cat

who has ever seen

the red dot.

I don’t want to sound mean

but must we

waste our lives

breaking our backs

working 9-5

trying to get by,

able to buy cheap beer

and sweat-shop shit

and just enough “food” to survive,

but hardly ALIVE

just going through the motions

emotionless

zoned out on zoloft

and xanax…

we all need to just breathe

and relax

we can certainly find happiness

but not at the mall

or online,

or in line at the mall…

money in and of itself

has never made

and will never make

anyone happy

happiness is not found in things

and not found in diamond rings,

especially for those poor people

mining the diamonds

its not found on gadgets

and gizmos

especially by the people making them.

happiness isn’t found

in stacks of useless paper

emblazoned with pictures

of slaveowners

horded in banks

as billions starve to death,

happiness cannot come

from other people suffering.

No, happiness isn’t on wall street

or at walmart,…

its on those afternoon walks

and late night talks,

at birthday parties

and barbques

in good books

and good coffee

and good wine

and campfire stories

and impromptu jam sessions

and days spent floating down the river on a tube

and nights spent looking up at the stars…

happiness is found in intense games of chess

and rummy,

and cribbage,

scrabble,

pictionary,

and charades…

its laying on the beach until you get too hot

then catching a wave,

its when, at the end of the day

all you had

is all you gave

and you gave it all

to yourself

and your family

and your friends

and your community,

and to humanity

and you never sold your soul

or wasted another second

trying to catch the red dot…

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