"Walt Curtis, the Peckerneck Poet" starts with a smutty but inspired composition from a would-be Walt Whitman, but it soon goes from bad to verse.
By JOSHUA TANZER
You'll probably know whether you'll like "Walt Curtis, the Peckerneck Poet"
from the following fairly smutty poem, easily the best that the Oregon
poet has to offer:
"Cash paid for Levi 501 jeans up to 8 dollars paid."
|WALT CURTIS, THE PECKERNECK POET|
|Directed by: Bill Plympton.|
Featuring: Walt Curtis.
Fuck the Japs! Fuck the French!
The Swiss! The Germans! The whole shootin' match!
My Levis belong to me!
I wore 'em out with hard labor, hard loving,
hard wear and tear, many hard-ons.
Torn, fingered, threadbare, greased,
pissed on, stomped full of holes, ripped,
cornholed, shat upon, ragged at the ass and crotch,
paint and cum spattered.
I'll be diddled if I deny 'em now
in their hallowed, faded, pale blue glory.
My girlfriend awkwardly opened each metal button,
a tender touch at a time.
Her sweet honey-colored hair and red luscious lips
caressin' my love-starved cock,
givin' the best American head in the world
No way will I sell my youthful passion and male beauty
Not to a bunch of internationalist wannabes
They don't have the balls or the muscles
to wear a Marlboro man's work trousers,
more American than mom's apple pie,
truer than "The Star-Spangled Banner."
A workin' man's ragged and weary story.
Pants! Because he wore 'em!
Workin' class red-blooded guy,
all the world's tryin' to buy.
Sell 'em over my dead body.
They wish they could be so lucky to possess my redneck rags.
Levis are my birthright
At this point, Curtis is interrupted by a security man at what
seems to be the Oregon state fair.|
"You're sittin' here talkin' porno stuff. I've heard it, man. I'm not
gonna listen to this," says the officer.
"Don't be upset. I'm talkin' about blue jeans and Levis and stuff,"
Curtis insists before being escorted off the fairgrounds.
Actually, they're both right. It's a porno poem with a point. I happen
to have taken a Greyhound bus through rural Oregon about the time this
film was made, and the roadsides were dotted with shacks offering
cash for people's worn-out blue jeans, which could be sold overseas
at a hefty price. Curtis weaves together Madison Avenue icons and
real-life Americana to reclaim ownership of the all-American image
that people think they're acquiring from those precious pairs of
The rest of Curtis' poems don't live up to this one. Embracing a kind
of would-be Whitmanesque ecstatic love of men and women alike, he declares at the
beginning of the film that he hasn't had sex in eight years. Maybe for
this reason, his poems reflect a kind of naive grade-schooler's obsessive
delight in the shock value of dirty words repeated for their own sake, or
a cheap novel's formulaic expressions of passion.
|APRIL 30, 2000|
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