LIFE IN LAS VEGAS

By Bruce Isaacson

Bruce Isaacson earned degrees at Claremont McKenna, Dartmouth, and Brooklyn College, where he submitted a thesis to noted American poet Allen Ginsberg. He is published of Zeitgeist Press, with over 100 titles to date, and was the first Poet Laureate of Clark County, Nevada.   Image/Rodney J. Lee

Bruce Isaacson earned degrees at Claremont McKenna, Dartmouth, and Brooklyn College, where he submitted a thesis to noted American poet Allen Ginsberg. He is published of Zeitgeist Press, with over 100 titles to date, and was the first Poet Laureate of Clark County, Nevada.


Image/Rodney J. Lee

Even in the shadow of Casinosaurus

Life springs irrepressible from the sands

Artists, poets, lovers, children

Dream of the seventh gold city...

To those who see in Vegas always what is small

We contain strange multitudes

Old west gun-racked in a pickup

The Liberace Museum

Street dudes lined up to work

New west corporate Disneysaurus

Every great nation’s culture presented in a buffet cuisine

Las Vegas—LA extended east to absurdity 

A strip of Hollywood Babylon spread-eagled over the Sierra

Las Vegas— the only town with twisted enough imagination

to conceive a life size replica of New York

and the humor to call that a resort

Casinosaurus gold flashes in teeth

But maybe here will be raised up the new man—  

beautiful, sexual, immune to bare butts on a billboard

Casinosaurus drowses in the dawn 

after a typical night on the kill

Later the sun will plump up like a tomato going bad

Later the beast will stretch its talons in advertising

roar back about blackjack, insurance and family fun

But there’s also the gathering of the art tribe on the sands

Or I’m alone 6am writing poems 

in the natural light of the desert

In a moment before the desert begins

When casino neon still outshines the sun

Here I am—  a jew in the desert—  found 

in the fabled seven cities of gold

Flamingo... Dunes... Sahara...

We are shimmering.