Thursday, June 24, 2010

Bohemian Goddess Phillipa Fallon Performs a Nihistic Beat Poem in "High School Confidential"

The following text is taken from Bill Geerhart who is the editor and co-counder of CONELRAD is the creation of writers who grew up in the shadow of the BOMB. I have found the site to be a treasure for interesting and novel aspects of the atomic age and it's subsequent impact on popular culture. -Dr. Petrosino

Approximately mid-way through the Albert Zugsmith exploitation film masterpiece HIGH SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL (1958), an attractive, quasi-bohemian woman strides on stage at a coffee house and belts out a beat poem that provides a delightfully nihilistic snapshot of the Cold War—including references to the space race and atomic evacuation. The fact that she happens to be accompanied by Jackie Coogan (who plays a heroin kingpin in the film) on piano is, like, pure existential gravy. Predictably, the teens in the audience appear to be digging Coogan’s incongruous ragtime key work and disregarding the depressing content of the lyrics.

High School Drag: Phillipa Fallon [1958]

My old man was a bread stasher all his life.
He never got fat. He wound up with a used car,
a 17 inch screen and arthritis.

Tomorrow is a drag, man.
Tomorrow is a king sized bust.

They cried ‘put down pot,’ ‘don’t think a lot,’ for what?
Time, how much? And what to do with it.

Sleep, man, and you might wake up digging the whole
human race giving itself three days to get out.

Tomorrow is a drag, pops, the future is a flake.

I had a canary who couldn’t sing.
I had a cat who let me share my pad with her.
I bought a dog that killed the cat who ate the canary.
What is truth?

I had an uncle with an ivy league card.
He had a life with a belt in the back.
He had a button-down brain.
Wind up a belt in the mouth with a button-down lip.

We cough blood on this earth.
Now there’s a race for space.
We can cough blood on the moon soon.

Tomorrow’s dragsville, cats.
Tomorrow is a king size drag.

Tool a fast shore, swing with a gassy chick.
Turn on to a thousand joys.
Smile on what happened, or check what’s going to happen,
You’ll miss what’s happening.
Turn your eyes inside and dig the vacuum.

Tomorrow, DRAG.