wow. this is an incredible poem. by the end of the third stanza, the speaker's desperate, frustrated, savage cry to just break away from everything and LIVE is almost palpable. the line "let me be with the lightning" is a stunning, wonderfully evocative phrase, worthy of repeating, and repeated here to powerful effect. the elemental things and sensations in the city detailed in the first verse (sounds, voices, screaming, anger, stench, steam) are contrasted beautifully and perfectly by the higher-order abstract constructs in the third verse (excuses, pleas for understanding, reasons, loneliness, exile, separation, lies, culture, pride, language, love), the sheer weight of which can, indeed, induce all that anger and ugliness back in the first verse, and make one want to rip them away in one bold stroke. (you might want to reconsider the use of tears and of fears in the 3rd verse, especially fears, as being more elemental, but i see where they can contribute very much to the speaker's frustrations.) very, very, very well done.
my one criticism... i thought the line "the warm drops on my face" in the second verse was a little muddled. at first, it reads like warm drops of scotch on your face; i think, though, it might mean rain? or sweat? rain is never mentioned otherwise in the piece, although it is suggested by the lightning (as well as by the use of the word "storm" and the steam in verse 1). if you intended rain, perhaps you could simply say, "the warm rain on my face"? same comment if you meant sweat. if you meant drops of scotch...well, this gives, in my opinion, a much different feel to the piece, a gross, drunken bellowing in the night, as it were, rather than a bold, "barbaric yawp". (and with drops of scotch on your face, i think you can just forget about trying to get lucky, lol. ) i hope you won't say that it's meant to be ambiguous, scotch or rain or sweat or even something else, open to differing interpretations... that's exactly the kind of thing your speaker is trying to escape, and i think it would take away from your theme here. in the words of a famous poet... "just an opinion."
this is still an amazing poem, though, brad, an interesting and universal theme uniquely and powerfully expressed. bravo!