The Cynglish Beat: The Middle Ground & Don’t Paint It Beige

I get angry when people won’t take a stand and speak out against something they obviously don’t agree with or believe in. There are times to shut up and times to speak out. These two poems are about the times when we should be saying something They were originally written as one poem but after reading them they seem to have different points of view.



We’ve lost the middle ground.

Either we sit around the campfire of burning hate literature singing Kumbaya, holding hands and reciting the mantra “We are the world”…

…or we take out a gun and shoot a young couple for parking in front of our house while they go visit our neighbours with their newborn baby.

The middle ground is no longer around, or a square. It’s become a null and void rhomboid of confusion and contradiction…



…but spank a diapered bum and suddenly you’re serving six months to one, for a beating that never was;

But spare the rod, lower the hand and put away the fly swatter and by the time they’re four you can’t take it anymore.

By the age of eight, an asylum looks great.

Before they’re eleven it’s time for boarding school heaven, even if it means selling the Harley so you don’t have to daily deal with the snarly, disrespectful, foul-mouthed version of the cousin you never invite for dinner, let alone educate and clothe and feed and buy the X-Box for.

There IS a ‘U’ in “educate”, but they won’t let you educate your own children.

Educate them in ‘cause and effect’, ‘crime and punishment’, ‘action and reaction’.

‘Reaction’, not ‘inaction’.

Not all passive no aggressive.

More ‘Highway to Hell’ and less ‘Kumbaya’.

Love is good, love is great, but it’s just the flipside of hate.

Not “I’m-better-than-you” hate, but ‘I hate tofu”, “I hate Wisteria Lane” or “I hate people who are afraid to voice an opinion for fear of being shoved aside and beaten down by the Love Police, the Co-operation Cops, the self-appointed picket-fencers doing a destructive epee and riposte against harsh words, raised voices, rights not to be left outside the bubble.

The bubble.

The social anti-bacterial soap bubble keeping us from catching conversational colds or fractious-friends flu or watch-what-you-say fever.

We’ve gone from ‘faster, slower, higher, lower” to “beige — I think I’ll paint it beige”.

But beige is just paint, covering sins, hiding crimes, keeping us all on an even keel on waveless seas for one more verse of Kumbaya, one more flight to Cloud Nine.

Trading vanGogh and Picasso for Hello Kitty and Care Bears.

Well, Smurf it! Let there be “I love Thrash Metal” or Folk or Baby Beluga;

and let there be hate —

I hate rude drivers, I hate cowardly terrorists, I hate the victimizers and will not hold their hand and welcome them into my paint shop for a coat of concealer, a killer coat of beige.

I will scream “Faster faster faster… slower, yes, slower… now a little bit higher and a whole lot lower.”

Make a few friendly waves and then surf that curl all the way to “Don’t Be Such A Beach”.

If you take a stand in the middle of the road

Expect to get run over by those of us unafraid to have Drive.

Follow the Instinct Interstate away from Beige Boulevard

And straight toward Express-myself Expressway.


Ciao for now,


An excerpt from the upcoming The Cynglish Beat by Tim Reynolds, from Cometcatcher Press.

All words and images here are Copyright Tim Reynolds.


2 Responses to “The Cynglish Beat: The Middle Ground & Don’t Paint It Beige”

  1. oh Jesus!

    This poem really spoke to me friend. I wish I had the patience to write or felt my words would make as much sense as your stories. because there are one or two verses in your post here that align-close enough with problems that I single handedly caused.

    my favorite lines there are the “fastser, slower, higher, lower” type of lines.

    • Thanks for letting me know, Dusty. If my words can speak to one person other than myself, then I`ve succeeded. It sounds like your life has been getting better. I hope it continues to do so into 2010 and beyond.



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