Disastrous trifles trifling with disaster; pages torn from a worn-out mid-life.
All our nobility's munched blank by Time; impossible dreams fit simply in an unattended trash can topped by Gower's lugubrious head. Dead again in my dreams, repetitive as a horror flick, unfixed as a workaholic's mealtime or freckles on a cancerous face. I worry about bothering to worry, the WHY of these needles my consciousness carries more to damn than darn. Why paper the slide to oblivion with sandpaper? The august face of a kicked-up possum's skull mocks my mutable deportment, my rubbery reckoning with the moment's emotions. Where now the surprised eye bright as a blackberry cell? O possum! Once rooting for riccola in the compost bucket, tipping its richness, now a fly (always the same fly, same fly as ever) straddles the corpse of a rind on a mound of coffee grounds in a moonlight you are done with rummaging, and I almost done, rubbing its hands.
Clear tape anchors the motorcyclist's window thrown up frivolously against the howl of "onward." Naked and splayed as an exhibited newt staked out flat as a collapsed tent on felt, I read the accompanying sign: "Here lies one dull as the other one---" It lacks the garish wet that one finds requisite for life. Frail light elongates lingeringly enough to define my diving bell, the clear weirdness of here. Here, without an onward. A here too full to ask: from whence? A here deaf with wetness, drenched with now, a prismed bubble.
The web of syntax fastens but does not fascinate, empty aria of here to there without the concrete context of content. I extend my fingerling claw to a thread.... "Filament, filament, filament," just like the old so-and-so's bag of beard threading the elements whisper-slipped from his brain-sac. The cotton candy pinks my mouth with glue. Why dot an I unless all connects to all, we know not how? Lying down together I say to you what you say to me until we hear it. A vivifying sample suspended clear in a petri dish twists forth its tentacular longing like a potato eye bursting to see.
Do I long for the life of the Young, unfurnished by loss? Every place new, yet familiarly full of itself, just as it is, and not disfigured by ghosts, by odd bits of old decor, absent everywhere save in memory? I settle on the stuffed settee with its price tag jammed in a cushion-crack. How what surrounds us drowns us! Even if the flow and flood's merely memorial, the happenstance and trash of a past no gloved hand has come to cart to the junkheap.... Invisible lines crowd before and behind me, tenants of Shelley's "Triumph of Life," a chain-gang spectacle of hope leading themselves in a closed circle like Dante's damned, like caterpillars a-creep; step, wait; step, wait. My moment comes: the grey guard stumbles, I dash for the line, escape to a featureless plain or ice floe --either will do--a highway widened to destination, a pupil aghast at its own seeing.... myself a mote alone on the blacktop.
Hell, darling, stares at us across the breakfast table as we pass the salt and brimstone and snap the paper crowded with crowing cowards. We're chafed by the hurrying goers in the Tube, the racy lackadaisical others who groom themselves and consume food out of sight. Other places, other faces eat the intimate knowing of them; those who remain strangers to us, to me, really, my dear guest-stranger-- improbable possible lover full of shifts and slidings, unexpected music glad as a stack of glasses, tragic as matches. Lord, help keep these words elided from my speech! We eat our words and whey, sugaring the pus. Toast scolds my inner ear's inner aria . . . . Writing's just a wounded man's spastic tracks in the snow --a litter of gesture against littleness.
Dinner meats and beer after beer revealed a fostering affection flirting finny and familiar as goldfish washed from their bowl on the mantle by our tidalwave of talk. Your stories were reckless as guesswork, a blind detective smelling after footprints, his nose sodden with cold. I told my hummingbird heart's inner aria, flying backward and forward at once. Down at Der Wunder Bar, sipping lemonade, I telephoned my flaming doll to declare "I'm drunk!" like Zapatistas at the barricades. We watched The Charms punk and skunk frantic as ants, while you barracudaed through two more SoCo's and lime. "Hurry up, please, it's time, Hurry up, please, it's time." Square dawn's backwash through the frigid windowpane revealed our underwear, pink and blue, entwined like DNA at the foot of the bed, a pair of mating snakes tight as wrung laundry.
A purgatorial, picture-perfect Saturday afternoon pulls her pin-striped awnings down, lackadaisical and O.K. with limited sky and expanding shade. I twirl an umbrella drink and watch my toes roast in the zone below my cool equator's waist --all centaur once, now nulled to rubbery numbness. Too lazy to invent, I lie and note-take connections sifted out by Time, my editor and better. What rings against my enlarging ears still childish and complete? Full of a whistle's insistence and a tin drum's beat? "Only you," I would lie, but you are not here-- my dear encumbrance, taking the hip-weight of my own imbalance. I remember our days of ire and fire, burning out fierce seeds that germinate my present dark, surrounded by a shade that shadows out the lark. Do not come again. Do not! My downhill backyard is all otherworldly now, mounded snow and ice frothing at the plow.... Rest, remorseful shade. Take my sunglasses, explore the Everglades. Just do not intrude, intrude, intrude your half-tone tune into my afternoon. "Tu whit, tu whoo." How rudely forced. With my pink umbrella drink I'll beat you back! Guest ghost, how homeless you've made me-- second-guessing what the mirror insists, my hard-nailed words unpinned from referent. Time rolls me like the driftwood dead my enervation imitates. Oh la, olé.
You know me talking always, a Gatling gun of guesses shooting pillows into feathers.... As fine a time as that is, whirls and twirls of dusty angels, feathery stars, I want solider talk. Commandoes who shoulder through my slop of verbiage, triangulating sightlines on the night-goggled target. My dictionary thins, my words wasted by AIDS, helpless helpers flashed to ash. Alphabet blocks tumble from my molting mouth. We touch them together until the words glue.