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Freedom, son’s, a dirty shirt.

—Bruce Springsteen


One me, trying. The catching tying.  Sleeping. Getting and hiding.  Hiding with running.1 Slow on where. We huddled, waiting.  In we. To running, running.                                              Terry taking.                                            Yeah.

Endless where.   Up.2

Running, some at you.3            Blame.           Blame you, it, when, there.              But.

And Wa—

Laying, you’re just crying.               Remember we’d trying.             We well to. Stranded and to.4 Hiding, hiding where.           On hiding.5

Hiding.            Hiding hiding.

Hiding.             Hiding.                                   Hiding.    Hiding hiding, hiding. Hiding hiding, hiding hiding.       Hiding — hiding — hiding.

Hiding it’s, we’ll hiding.













1 we was born Running
Slow dark desperate We
In the heart of We

2 a passionate desperate
not merely escape but conviction in your mouth

3 Terry and other angels
Floating, forbidden

4 from the end, to the river, the angel, the dispossessed, the thunder, the hopeless, still dancing, to the silence, the light

5 one of my very most nearly always up in the spring of 1984 above and around still nonetheless seemed to have been very much Keeps me alive

6 his long-time saxophonist Clarence Clemons (often) overwhelming with nearly limitless meanings: Baby, I Love You. Every Day I Have to Cry.



Note: The following texts were referenced in the writing of this poem.

  1. Springsteen, Bruce. “Backstreets.” Born to Run, 1975.
  2. McParland, Robert P. “The Geography of Bruce Springsteen: Poetics and American Dreamscapes.”
    Interdisciplinary Literary Studies 9, no. 1 (2007): 19–26. http://www.jstor.org/stable/41209973.
  3. Fanshel, Rosalie Zdzienicka. “Beyond Blood Brothers: Queer Bruce Springsteen.” Popular Music 32, no. 3 (2013): 359–83. http://www.jstor.org/stable/24736780.
  4. Pardini, Samuel F.S. “Bruce Zirilli: The Italian Sides of Bruce Springsteen.” Italian Americana 28, no. 1 (2010): 36–50. http://www.jstor.org/stable/41932390.
  5. User comment. “Bruce Springsteen - Backstreets (Studio Version).” Youtube video. http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=oID_fZDtcs0.
  6. Hughes, Charles L. “Rebuilding the ‘Wall of Sound’: Bruce Springsteen and Early 1960s American Popular Music.”
    Interdisciplinary Literary Studies 9, no. 1 (2007): 63–80. http://www.jstor.org/stable/41209977.