The Stones in Morocco
by Rick Mullin
Imagine Marianne among the Stones
at Redlands, Keith’s estate, a bearskin wrapped
but loosely on her nakedness. The Stones
are stoned and Marianne is showered. Stones
be damned, the wet and glorious Miss Faithfull
combs the gallery of modish tones
and stages center to The Rolling Stones.
Nirvana! But imagine how the band
reacts when seven elves spot contraband
(They looked like elves. Keith let them in). “Oh, Stones!
says Keith, “–err, Charlie, darling, quash me rock-o?—
…I’m ferrying the Bentley to Morocco!
Bung-ho, me lads! And ta, Chuck…. To Morocco!”
Brian taps Miss Pallenberg, the Stones’
response to Yoko, “Do you know Morocco ?
Was it on the tour?” “My dear, Morocco
seems like only yesterday,” the rapt
Anita smiles mit zigarette. “Morocco.
Ahhh!” And soon, it’s Charlie-kick-me-rock-o
on the Philips near Toulouse. The faithful
Charlie stays at home, but Sister Faithfull
feeds the dashboard 45s. “More rock, oh
Marianne,” Sir Mick, who leads the band,
commands, still liver-lipping his Marine Band®.
Barcelona doesn’t give the band
a warm hello. It’s nothing like Morocco,
with its riots and sadistic band
of district cops who cannot tell a band
from ETA guerillas. Rolling Stones?
Quién es ellos? “We’re a fucking band!”
cries Keith. It seems as if the records, banned
perhaps, available in alleys, wrapped
in garbage, failed to fly in Spain or crapped
out on the radio in Barcelona. Band
and blondies do the overnight. Their faithful
fans stay out of sight. Beware the faithful.
Brian, sickly, lacking faith, full
of jealousy was left in France, a band
of paisley ’round his midriff. Our Miss Faithfull
checked him into hospital, Saint Faithfull
of the Meds and Mendicants. Morocco
hailed across an azure sea. The Faithful?
Fuck the Faithful. All the fucking Faithful
want is records. Tours. The Rolling Stones!
Outrageous. Slings and arrows, sticks and stones…
our party has a rap to beat! The Faithful,
they can wait. And so can Brian, wrapped
in paisley, paranoid, committed, trapped.
Bill Wyman is invisible. He scrapped
the gig again, a Maryann unfaithful.
“Rhythm section in absentia,” rapped
the singer. Keith demurred—that session wrapped
before it started. Now: Your favorite band
in Africa, where hash is powder wrapped
with flowers in the Kasbah attics. Rapt
in flowers, everybody finds Morocco
to his liking. Like a hole. Morocco,
with the seven-string guitar unstrapped,
is like a hive, a blackout for the Stones.
A pile of flower petals on the powdered stones.
But nothing lasts forever, friends. The stones
will roll as truths will out, a verdict wrapped
in newsprint or a song you sell the Faithful:
Tears go by. Now Brian’s back. The band
is in a slump. They can’t retrieve Morocco .