“One Heat Minute” Podcast & Some Poetry

 

heat pic

Michael Mann’s 1995 L.A. crime opus, Heat, happens to be my favorite movie of all time.  Me and my family have somewhat of a deep connection to the film as well, given some of its didactic content relating to some of the dynamics found within a criminal’s family life, so the movie is especially important to me on that level as well.

As it so happens, there’s a podcast that began two years ago, called One Heat Minute, created by Australian film journalist, Blake Howard.  This podcast involved breaking down the movie Heat into 1-minute increments, analyzing one minute of the film per episode of the podcast.  This was an incredibly ambitious project for Blake Howard to undertake, but he finally finished the podcast a couple of days ago, after more than 166 episodes.  My brother, Niles Schwartz is also a film critic and has been featured on a few episodes of this podcast as well.  He actually shared some of our family history during one of those episodes, connecting my father to the movie’s Chris Shiherlis character (played by Val Kilmer), since my father had been in and out of prison his whole life, finally dying while serving a more than 20-year stretch for robbing more than 40 credit unions throughout the Midwest.

Since the movie meant so much to me, I decided to write a poem about it, which is something I had never done before, but I figured “what the hell, why not?”

I emailed Blake Howard and sent him my poem, and he loved it, unsurprisingly, since he’s probably the most pro-Heat biased person in the known universe, and so I expected him to like it even if it had been a complete disaster!  The poem is titled The Lone Wolf, and Blake asked me if he could read it on his podcast.  I was honored to say the least, and if that wasn’t already flattering enough, he actually waited until the final pre-credits minute episode of the podcast before airing it!  Needless to say, I was excited when he emailed me to tell me this.  Anyway, here’s a link to this episode of the podcast, where my poem is mentioned and then read, starting at about 02:59:00.  What an awesome opportunity it was to be a part of Blake’s epic journey!

Here’s the link:   Final Pre-Credits Minute Episode

And here’s the poem I wrote, below:

“The Lone Wolf”
By Lage von Dissen

Eagle, globe, and anchor branded
Fates intertwined, two men of arms
Paths diverge as they extend
Yet bound to intersect again

Trapped on the Island of McNeil
A fortress where amends are made
Freedom found, then lost in Folsom
Four year price, with seven paid

Gaining smarts for on the street
The captain found his loyal crew
Learning those tricks of-the-trade
Submerged within a feedback loop

Released again to play the game
By taking scores until the end
A stranger with a diff’rent mask
Was tasked to join the other men

The RAJA beast was running fast
An homage to the daughters four
With two-eleven in the air
The clock was ticking, time to go

A charge of shape had cracked the drums
For bonds that tied this crew as one
An itchy trigger finger pulled
‘Twas evil in its truest form

No witness left, for why the risk?
Though it didn’t have to come to this
Enraged by all the needless death
He sought the cowboy’s final breath

Distracted by those cherries flashed
That beard of evil slipped away
A new distraction came about
Despite the codes that hold their sway

A longing not to be alone
To feel her breath, her bodice warm
Conditions of humanity
Emotions push against the norm

The fence did guide the linen yonder
Into the laundry, t’clean what’s owed
But shady deals can go awry
And pride can overtake the show

Into an empty phone he talked
Revenge was sought, impulsive ought
Yet eyes still gazed upon a prize
Metals refined, precious defined

The Five-O prowler in the midst
With dedication, virtues fixed
Hoping that the bomb’s exotic
Though cynical and not quixotic

A simple name, betrayed the gang
One very common moniker
“Hey Slick!” a phrase the peacock sang
Surveilled right on the monitor

Patiently waiting, sounder of swine
To catch the pirates in the act
But gave to Charlie their position
Most contingent fact

Although the captain and his crew
Could feel the heat, already knew
They hungered for the twelve-point-two
A final score for dreams come true

Spotted on the one-o-five
The hammer fully cocked
Bullets spared for java joe
Their destinies were locked

Sharing darkness, sharing angst
Recalling existential woes
Content with both their lines of work
And neither willing to revert

They’re apt to do what they do best
Respect they’ll grant, forget the rest
Relations failed, they’re on their own
With ultimatums set in stone

Dreams revealed their inner selves
The shadow and the darkness felt
Drowning, for the time he lacked
Eight-ball hem’rrage staring back

They parted ways and both were warned
Surveillance gone, the hunt was on
The traitor had come back again
He tortured, killed, more blood was spilled

Guard of bodies well informed
Had tipped ’em off, the men in blue
First Commercial, Wilmington
A battle in the streets ensued

Many died that fateful day
The crew, ’twas all but two
Gambler, leader, made it out
They knew just what to do

The man who lived among remains
Was banking on a chance
That love and vengeance would entail
The making of their plans

One was actually saved by love
She let him get away
But vengeance had prevailed indeed
The other had to stay

The psychopath had lured him back
Triple tapped, the heart ‘n cap
Made him gaze into his eyes
To face the man before he dies

Abandoning his only love
Around the corner, felt the heat
New Zealand now so far away
The chance is gone, to be complete

On the tarmac, one-on-one
His shadow fluttered in the black
Fatal wound, he held his hand
He ain’t never going back

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