Aug 252020

Vivid Ovid. His humanizing tales of metamorphosis (if you’ll pardon the pun) in the literally alien context of the interaction of gods and people have drawn the eyes and admiration of readers for eons. How often I longed to trace with my own tongue the temptations and graces of such tales! Who wouldn’t want to be master of a matter so fantastical, so outlandish—and yet still be able to draw homey homilies from the consequences of such fables? Daphne praying to be turned into a laurel tree rather than endure a rape in the god-clutches of a “divinely maddened” Apollo; or the unfaithful Jupiter stashing his part-time squeeze, the ravishing beauty Io, not in some kept-woman’s studio apartment, but in another living form by transforming her…into a cow—albeit a beautiful cow. And Ovid’s touch of detail that makes both god and man acknowledge their wayward foibles, their vulnerability to desire. Such is our condition: half angel, half satyr. What, ultimately, could be more compelling than this poetic recognition of our limitedness adrift in the infinity of our desire?

Always it is against chaotic Nature that human success in the arts in measured. Versailles with its to-the-millimeter immaculate gardens, Jesus with his cracking of Lazarus’ catacomb—leading the experienceless child within each of us on to eternal life, the absence of Death. But Ovid’s fables transmute nature to nature, violating the continuity of life within life as it proceeds from the womb to tomb—rather than through some transvaluation of all values via a post-death resurrection, or the living-death deletion of meaning that narcissistic nihilism provides. Ovid’s metaphor is metaphor emphatic, metaphor literally embodied (were such transformations to actually occur anyplace beyond the agile chambers of the mind). This makes him a prankster in some respects, a comedian of life’s myriad deceptions and switcheroos, slips and oopses. Instead of the authority of Justice (or the inevitability of the furious Eumenides) appearing at the end of a tragedy, enforcing cosmic meaning by the rending apart of life’s tender fabric, we have instead the inescapable acknowledgement of a rueful chuckle forced from the aghast reader at the transformation’s literal unreality and too-intimate horror. To be moved at all by the pageant Ovid presents is to acknowledge our own culpability in the lusts and greeds he lampoons. Yes, I, too, would so covet, so fail of my ideals, so mangle my heavenly morality with my mortal mischief. There, lacking the grace of God, go I; every I that I can imagine being or becoming, in all my rhymes of form and story.

Existentialism is one moral response to the nothingness modern man confronts now that we’ve blown the Holy Ghost from the churches—the stained glass left colorless and drained of ecstasy. The bareness, the thisness, of place, of Everyman in every place, replaced the altar that had once signaled the savior’s triumph over the reality of Death. The very sepulcher became the resonant cross, embossed with neither promise nor stoic resignation, but instead enriched with the simple elaboration of emptiness itself. Ever more intricate become our minuets above the void. As Mallarme noted: “The beautiful, gratuitous, turns into the ornamental, repudiated.” Mallarme’s For Anatole’s Tomb is a restful counterpoint to our innate desire’s torturous wish for the infinite, desire’s tensile beauty making every moment its own gravesite, its own elaboration of the endless dust and nothingness we face. I like the moral stance emblemized in the Pagan torch-passing of praise and memory a bit better myself: an endless relay of meaning lit to life by the burn of magnificent poetry. Such a contingent arrangement must strike modern artists as too hopeful, too communal an enterprise after the wick of self-conscious Romanticism was ignited. But, don’t bet on it! Romanticism itself is a response to the stocks and manacles of Kant’s “no you can’t,” the vivisecting separation of object and subject—a spastic cast of empirical dice—and nothing more than that.

Is it any wonder that Shakespeare took up Ovid as a foil for his first funning with verse? Titus Andronicus pushes the dry coracle of black humor into the slick swamp of tragedy in an ever-modern mash-up going nowhere. Existential titters accompany the gruesome and aghast pies stuffed with human flesh as they are served up piping hot and tucked into with an ignorant will. Who does not eat of Life with the same ignorance as the rapists Shakespeare depicted at the table, pinkies up and kerchiefs to chins? I, too, like the wily Bard, love Ovid in all his miracle and mayhem. So much mayhem!

Our current crop of graphic novels and grim heroes are of Ovid’s mold. Think of today’s Batman, the caped crusader, the Dark Knight, transformed by a desire for justice into a nightwinged bat, who turns his midnight vengeance into a secular grail tipping over with blood. Catwoan, Aquaman, Doc Oc—all half-breeds wandering bewildered in landscapes of existential angst. I, too, had wanted to honor with the sweat of inspiration and the grace of rhyme of one of Ovid’s raving fables, but as I toured the crazed slop-house of the Greek gods, the Roman gnomes, as Ovid had carved and enlarged them, I was struck by the fiery violence his tales told of—and, I admit, I was afraid to retail such gory goods in my modest mall of art.

I turned the prized pages of my Ovid over once again. Even the fable of fey Salmacis, I noticed, with her “weak, enfeebling streams,” ends in a dual-sex hermaphroditic unity that is still illegal in many countries. The lovers’ tentative rapprochement has some of Absurdio’s hesitant desire in its outlines—an expression of being’s ignorant need to be, and therefore be loved. So twined together is our self and our sex. Salmacis and Hermaphroditus was almost the tale I re-told. What if Absurdio met a wet, eight-armed Venusian princess in her tidal pool of green chlorine? The denouement was still too horror-genre for me to proceed with that story, but the delicacy of Salmacis and Hemaphroditus’ meeting was a model for Absurdio’s first grope toward hope—the challenge and comfort that concupiscence provides:

The boy knew nought of love, and, touched with shame,
He strove, and blushed, but still the blush became;
In rising blushes still fresh beauties rose;
The sunny side of fruit such blushes shows,
And such the moon, when all her silver white
Turns in eclipses to a ruddy light.
The Nymph still begs, if not a nobler bliss,
A cold salute at least, a sister’s kiss;
And now prepares to take the lovely boy
Between her arms. He, innocently coy,
Replies, "Oh leave me to myself alone,
You rude, uncivil nymph, or I’ll begone."
—J. A.

I settled, perhaps a touch too reflexively, upon the pageantry of Pygmalion’s tale. After all, the story had been exampled brilliantly by Shaw, and there’s even a musical modeled from its bones—though fleshed with sexism and an elitist tone of triumphalism (to which I am not, confessedly, adverse). This story has no goopy, blood-bludgeoned ending, no comeuppance, no disastrous consequence where Nature regains the reins of Justice and executes the feckless nabob who knew well enough into whose guarded garden he had trespassed. No, here Venus stoops to conquer, and extends a merciful pity on her inspired subject. It is the love story of the artist and his object, his sculpted creation, a female mate conjured from pure desire and art’s millimeter-mania for perfection. Yes, a fine tautology to lead me down the garden path. What post-modern word-whittler could resist the inevitable levels of self-reference, the circumference of innuendo bound to grow Falstaff-fat? And, with luck and cunning, perhaps my Absurdio could be as happy a sinning creation as my fellow Ovid-fan Shakepere had managed? To what Mediterraneanesque setting would my gods and goddesses descend? What glamorous goods would press against my alluring shop window?

The main item in the inventory of Venus and Vesuvius, as you will soon plainly see, is an adolescent male I have dubbed Sir Absurdio. Absurdio is left alone on the planet Venus where he was born, the only son of two intrepid scientists appointed to explore our over-heated solar neighbor. Why he has been left so tragically alone, and at such a crucial age, our tale will unfold. I myself was so ill as a teen with an ulcerative onset conjured by the psychic injuries of my parent’s divorce, that I missed the last two years of my American high school experience. I grok some aspects of Absurdio’s puzzling solitude. No friends from our 3,000-strong clan of Marlboro Mustangs possessed the fortitude to visit a lonely, pimple-ridden writer-to-be in the forested enclosure of his one-boy farm-forest prison. The only friends who favored me with their presence were Ray Bradbury, Arthur C. Clarke, Isaac Asimov, Ben Bova, Phillip K. Dick, J. R. R. Tolkien, Terry Brooks, Stephen R. Donaldson, and other luminaries of the imagination’s intergalactic parsecs. They are the reason I placed my Ovidian vale in outer space.

Now, if you’ll strap on your muse-provided jet-packs, let’s zoom to the moon—and beyond!

Gregg Glory, August 2013.

Aug 242020


A curiouser and curiouser work of science-fiction narrative poetry


Gregg Glory
[Gregg G. Brown]


His kind heart was obedient to truth's troublous pulse. 

I have not loved the world, nor the world me; 
Never flattered its rank breath, nor bowed 
Patient knee to its pale idolatries, 
Nor coined my cheek with smiles, nor cried 
Aloud in worship of an echo; none of the crowd 
Deems me one of such a throng; among them 
I stood, but not of them--- in my furled thoughts 
Shrouded, which were not their thoughts, and had I not 
Defiled my mind, I still might myself thus subdue. 
Beyond a mortal man impassioned far 
At these voluptuous accents, he arose, 
Ethereal, flushed, and like a throbbing star 
Seen mid sapphire heaven's deep repose; 
Into her dream he melted, as the rose 
Blendeth its odor with the violet,--- 
Solution sweet: meantime the frost wind blows 
Like Love's alarum pattering the sharp sleet 
Against the window-panes; St. Agnes' moon hath set.  
          --- J. K.,  St. Agnes' Eve

The Poem

On this page

  1. [On Earth]
  2. A tale strange, soft-focused, distant, then clear,
  3. My dark muse eyes me, sullen-silent as the night
  4. A ruined foil flashing back fabulous suns
  5. Should I take up the Author’s patrolling pose?
  6. I sigh, my ruffian hearers, whose ocean silence beats
  7. [on Venus]
  8. Enigmatic clouds crimped a divine skyline.
  9. All this, and more: honey-blood serenades
  10. Sad years sequestered Absurdio to his mournful room
  11. His pubis, freshly ringletted with dirty thoughts,
  12. His curdling thighs unbundled boings and sprang,
  13. He cramply encamped in a humid, drenching tent
  14. In the hell-lit incline of his velvelour lax-o-boy,
  15. The see-through water of his ice-light heart,
  16. Cold skies collated from his wish-index nipped him.
  17. She, the sphinx, the minx, discovered was,
  18. Her maiden, sundial, shattered hand ticked up,
  19. A lonely cloud, flumed crimson, bounded by
  20. Absurdio was shanghaied by his consciousness
  21. Never would one lunar hair of her crisp coiffure
  22. Genuine Absurdio in patient prayer genuflected,
  23. Absurdio resumed his restless tour
  24. A strain, a stain was upon everything like black snow,
  25. Astronaut Absurdio tumbled,— uncapsuled, lost
  26. Desire freeze-framed him in his vouyer’s foyer,
  27. Peeping through a hiked skirt of curling Alpine pine
  28. Should he bridegroom first with attendant touch
  29. He touched, or his seeming hand seemed to touch,
  30. The furred head, moribund, profound, turned
  31. “Forgive my flash of hubris, while I loiter to insist,
  32. “I wonder just what happened to this merry pair
  33. “What catastrophe’s haphazard track did they pace,
  34. “Timeline.” Absurdio sighed against his hammock’s
  35. Absurdio, desire’s soldier, soldered on
  36. Spilling balm into the mini-labyrith of his brain.
  37. Her (was she warm?) form poured in oblagattoes;
  38. Created conscious again in his dream-ripple,
  39. As if to dissipate, a distraught wisp
  40. Deciphered sounds now entered her transparent ears
  41. Yet where was this wizard woman’s twinkly spark
  42. There was always some sort of gangly changing going on
  43. A freckled Mrs. Frankenstein whose veritable veins
  44. Her happenstance phantom, her tech-lechery
  45. For this sceptred instant, grinningly alive
  46. Love herself had jokingly sponsored their sparring war
  47. And the nasty narrator choked on their lifesaver

Condemning shadows quite. — A. & C.

“Stop moping!” she would cry: “Look at the harlequins!”

“What harlequins? Where?”

“Oh, everywhere. All around you. Trees are harlequins, words are harlequins. So are situations and sums. Put two things together– jokes, images– and you get a triple harlequin. Come on! Play! Invent reality!”

I did. By Jove, I did.

— V. N.

[on Earth]

A tale strange, soft-focused, distant, then clear,
As when a movie cures myopia, or a drear
Nightmare that startles us, shelters;– or sordid dream’s
Thematic shadows get ripped by a flashlight pen
Oblivious to mood and setting. Such a tale, my friends,
As Satan commences in blasphemy, with commentary,
But listening saints can hear in holy choir,
I begin, here, with you, though it changes in an hour.

My dark muse eyes me, sullen-silent as the night
Whereon with insect wings she glides, flapping late.
Exotic quixotic, I depict her on my verses’ vase
Inverting the immortality her throne supposes.
The castled moon below her, she’ll glare on,
Past marbled Mars to veiny Venus, if she must
In that post-lunar landscape sift gold words from dust.
My dragged heart blackens and thuds its tars. What roses,
What Sols I scribble, she dictates. I am her pawn.
I am too mild-modest to unveil the thundered stars.

A ruined foil flashing back fabulous suns
Whispers lightnings in my wilted breath. Strip-
Teased away from the Ultra-nutribar I eat
To aura languid limbs in rugged health, the slashings
Shatter my dry attentions into balmy tears.
I teeter too near dissolution to feel the fear.
The velvet chitter of my needleteethed pets,—
My pens, my peers, my pellucid, inventive cheres
Pallidly rattle in the inky stand. They hold my soul
In the slangy, charmed embrasures of their Latinate script,
Their nibbed hubbub of syllables and shivery tongues.

Should I take up the Author’s patrolling pose?
Hover ponderously, an editor’s eyebrow
Above witchy Reality? Or ride, randily astride,
My meditative pen? Amused, my muses?
Perhaps, a precocious Iago moulting mirrors,
I’ll lose my ahhing audience in appalling smokes—
A magician of the moment consoled by disappearance.
Tranquil, lamplit in night’s lousy shroud,
My selves assemble at the clarion bic-click
That drum-taps my unruly soul’s tribal pow-wow
To warrior order; even my fibulating, lying heart
Capitulates, fisting the spurious spirit-spear
Of its found rhyme, off-rhyme, rhyme again.

I sigh, my ruffian hearers, whose ocean silence beats
My aching soul’s sharp shoals to eloquence;
I sigh, and, if you’d spare an ear to hear me,
Take my caddish, candied language from me; mug me!
Or, if you’d be vooshed to Venus, succumb to me,
Turn the cheap keys of your failing spirits over
To me, a hoarse, corrupt rocket-car,
Tar-catarrhed in ineluctable sin, and begin.
Harrum. I sigh. —Oh skip it, skip it!
Skip this daft narrator’s gnarly part;
Such naughty nihilism ill-becomes me. Instead,
I return the guilty pearl of our veiled tale noir
To you, viewers. Vide, lecte, dears. Now start.

* * *

[on Venus]

Enigmatic clouds crimped a divine skyline.
Lacy ices drifted on acid, carbolic pools.
Lurid skies, vague purple or angst incarnadined,
Shone on no birds twanging tangled lutes.
Spilled dusts of galaxies in staid starlight burned.
Intricate dusts hurly-burlied burning snows
Blown to walking nightmare by outre genomes.
A fetid, festal energy spooned from sherberty clouds,
Lime bright, or mocha coffee brune, or confusedly infused
With venusian magenta, a trying shade
For human retina unused to alien marvels.

All this, and more: honey-blood serenades
Of ochre-aquamarine, a sheer fantasy’s phantasm
Poured the gorgeous poisons of a world of hues
On our young, shiveringly young, hero: Absurdio.
His tintinnabulating spine rived, racked with spasms;
His single organism sizzled in Venus’ puzzle.
Down in an unpleasant dome he homed. Absurio dozed,
Ruminating ruin on his quiet couch; half-deranged
His tender head rested, like an exhausted comet.
Such a new, human arrival among the strange!

Sad years sequestered Absurdio to his mournful room
Alone, as only a circus clown minus patsy may be found,
Leap-frogging loneliness in life’s third, unattended
Ring. His parents (in previous incarnations now
Photographically enhanced) had evaporated by mistake,—
Measuring tinselly elements at an underground lake
Of caramel kerosene, and smoking during break.
Wretched, abused Absurdio rewound the fatal video
Until their surprised incinerated faces aged to silvery frays.
And now, eons later, alone, adolescence pounced.

His pubis, freshly ringletted with dirty thoughts,
Like a haloed moon arose. In the winsome autumn
Of recent nights, It came upright, red-shafted, huge,
A crooning bone pronged among wronged sheets—
A blushful lighthouse’s thirsty straw agog a spermy sea—
The perfectly predictable consequence of testosterone
Spritzed by time’s Tom Thumb into both boy and man.
His hands grew awkward, strong, with hardened palms.
His bearding chin squared beyond childish qualms.

1 0
His curdling thighs unbundled boings and sprang,
Pirouetting poignant manipulated triplets
Upon the pulsing pointer of his moaning groin
As he swam Pan’s ancient, ardent australian crawl awash
In the Caribbean crucible of his sweat-swaled dreams;
His sleepy teeth ground against giant, tiaraed teats.
Wounded by his own desire, Absurdio spawned
Unseemly lesion-dots on his knotted pajama bottoms,
Paler than the snaily paisleys already winding there.

1 1
He cramply encamped in a humid, drenching tent
And coughed awake still aching, torqued in shrunken pants.
His furring, burgeoning body’s once lucent form
Clouded toward stormy adulthood’s horny, knuckled norm.
Only the marginal innocence of his virgin lips,
—Pouted to receive an apparition’s dissolving kiss,—
Retained their fulsome, petulant, purplish childishness.

1 2
In the hell-lit incline of his velvelour lax-o-boy,
One saw a cowling shadow parachute slo-mo from his skull
In the delineated darkness of a filmed dream.
His silent eyes, closed to heaven, endured
A durable pair of bug-ugly goggles, snapped
Primly in place by a pinkish plastic tether at his ears.
His nimble, impaitient thumb drubbed adagios
Against his impaitient, tempted temples. Ohs
Yawned from below his sweet, nasal declivity;
The VR headset warped, a double bow upon his brow,
Poised to twinge and whang its dodgy target,
Those red circles centered on just one misty wish.

1 3
The see-through water of his ice-light heart,
Fuel-injected by the rude roar and vodka-boil of sex,
Was doubled in the VR goggles’ shotglass apparatus.
In tonight’s tittering iteration of his single,
Searing dream, where was the girl, the She? Let us
Scan the fake, pick the pixels, lozenge the rengas
Of programmers’ pop-eyed loops, swallow suns
Or do whatever, whoever, however need be done
To spotlight in life’s divided cell the primogenic One.

1 4
Cold skies collated from his wish-index nipped him.
An earthly Arcadia appeared; a galvanized valley
Tinny under aluminum heaven, was sourced
From whacked smacks of aberrant bits of static,
Enhancing his whims with imagination’s majesty;
Inverted mountains, tipsy on their starch peaks,
Ranged still lakes loaded with shotgunned verbaneum;
Mossed redbreasts creeped across the angled lawn
Mooing at woodpeckers who chewed trees of lead;
Star-flowered vines screwed absent-present oaks of air
And purled like invisible trellises, going nowhere.

1 5
She, the sphinx, the minx, discovered was,
A downcast abandoned statuary whose ass ascends;
A shadowy mute among the academic ivy’s gloss,
Her stiff stone skin was one exquisite blank
Compounded of rare lights bleeding as they fell
Through other, farther, fainter taintless lights,
Defining whiteness. So, above. As for below
Her nether half a blue fluid ink remained,
A disfigured shadow semblance that attached,
A skittish circus tent, to her body’s upper whiteness.

1 6
Her maiden, sundial, shattered hand ticked up,
An apostle pointing at a sky-blue book,
Shafting through Nature’s monstrous greenness
With a simple whiteness summed of simpleness,
As if to spill a bell. Attendant hours tolled
Cumulus-slow through soft forenoon’s sways
Momenting toward the slave existence Absurdio had always
Intended to be hers. His cola-fouled breath he held,
Dithering her splendid image with his swan-soft,
Slightly perspiring palm atop the swervy curve and cup
Of the alarmingly mobile, docile, swift control ball.

1 7
A lonely cloud, flumed crimson, bounded by
The imitation-shape of her complex suavities,
Half-geared to swell a summer rainstorm’s tears
In puddly, ploppy pluvial benediction upon
The evil coeval heat of his hot delirium.
“O half-groped, untouched, doped isotope
Of this radon-free semi-demi-reality! All if, if, if!
Will you never swivel or pivot ever
From your smooth stagger-pattern on the TV
In vivid splinters? A decadent Miss’ shaggy quiff?”

1 8
Absurdio was shanghaied by his consciousness
To a heroin-incertain fairyland of ifs. Poor Ab!
No angelic integers or numeric mumbles ever spazzed
Original anger or new-budded love
From the mutant look of her elect electrons’
Seamless electric face. Thrill and chance,
Those boiling bodings that hurt the nerves,
Braked their roulettes and rollercoasters, moped —
Exiled by inconsequent conquest’s certain grace.

1 9
Never would one lunar hair of her crisp coiffure
Split off, twirl, or dangerously dawn orange
Like the burnt inhaled singe of a spliff. Never, p’fft!
All love was dead, desire defunct, hissed flat
In the monumental deflation of the sure.
Where was to be the wrenching fix, the heady remedy?
What cure could toy his totem-world to stark reality?
Absurdio plunked his whole mind in his heart
And thought. And thought. And thought. Could it hurt to pray?

2 0
Genuine Absurdio in patient prayer genuflected,
In patient prayer did patiently inspect his knees;
Any glance listing against those lucent eyes
Saw God reflected, a profounder Blank in blankness.
Deep in the gothic fundament of their tombs
Responsive saints spun shriveled, shrived cadavers
To hear the holy moistness of so undevout a mouth
Spout “God.” And yet, no rent heaven yawned
Anointing him with day, nor remade what he was,
Nor she, the ecstatic static and the playful clay.

2 1
Absurdio resumed his restless tour
Of the prismatic computer’s chilly rainbow rooms:
Phony noon presided in tangerine, heart-rending hues
Over the local, erotic focus of his loves.
A spouting, sympathetic cloud maneuvered near
And passed on again into frisky sunshimmer;
A clammy aftertouch of lemony shadow lingered
On the moat-dark undersides of fractal leaves.
Snoring backwards in his spraddled chair
Silly birches flickered streaked with oval droops of cool,
While galloping Cupid’s reigning love-thoughts trot
Down his sleepy cheeks and trace
A crystal bridle drawn by drool.

2 2
A strain, a stain was upon everything like black snow,
And felt more wicked ice within his stalactite heart
Than raw outward aberrance dared to show.
An iridescent darkness, a deepness of absence
Soiled the unpointoutable apparent to his witness soul.
Her dimpled elbows, simple bends, digged
Into the soft argyle turf with wounding runes.
In her empty, happy lap, sidelong sifted sapphires
Of quiet light dashed and spilt their milky stars,
Spattering trace evidence of some slight, damp want.

2 3
Astronaut Absurdio tumbled,— uncapsuled, lost
Among Beauty’s forlorn flotsam, a jetted jerk
Whose sour foreknowledge coffin-mittened dripping hands
Clenching and unclenching in a madman’s clasp
After stark Snow White who twirlled eternally repelled
From the lurching, avid lunges of his untutored touch.
The magnet-magic that created her kept her from his crush.
Then his naked, nasty, gnarled, marooned left foot
(Or was it thonged and handsome, a Greek god’s ped?)
Intruded, thus, into the afternoon’s spooled storyline.

2 4
Desire freeze-framed him in his vouyer’s foyer,
A randy stallion-statue displayed above his mare,
Plumply morose in his recreated shyness, same as ever.
What further use was doubt— unless by addition’s error
He wished to subtract himself? He became devout, dissevered
All annoy of anguish from his mirror-minon
Dunce, each ounce. His on-screen he was there, here,
The really reel, real deal. And yet…. (and yet!) And yet,
The wet, generated earth still presumed to bountifully bouy
His calculated weight. This dream ‘he’ within a dream
Dispersed his doubts of truth with hopes of joy.

2 5
Peeping through a hiked skirt of curling Alpine pine,
Absurdio sunk binoculate eyes against her buck
Naked, pale, and blue-washed bod, drunkly tipped
Against Venus’ fin-de-fawn and sine curve vale.
A sun-crouched lioness, but blue-lipped, she lay
Keeping her cold secret, at once lit hottentot hot
And known freon-cold to the potential touch.
Our boy, the trembling man, only then began, at first,
By frittery extentions of his film-self to engulf
Her palpable sides with his ghost’s caresses.

2 6
Should he bridegroom first with attendant touch
Her shoulder made lemony by sunlight, sponging his lust
On what was some Venus Eve’s first, bitterest, citrine brine?
His space-gloved hand went floating toward her
Side,— the sly, slippery side nearest, dearest him.
Intermittettent abscences were eradicated, bit by byte,
Solving sober Zeno’s ouzo-drunken paradox
In the gross, closed glance of Absurdio’s dreaming eye,
(Though God’s ultra-fine squint might more acutely stutter)
Closer to her faux female beavery smoothness
By pixel-quantum amplitudes of dotted light brightening
Toward the ultimate touch of her molten shoulder.

2 7
He touched, or his seeming hand seemed to touch,
A pebble-cool graininess of skin for one firm instant,
As if heaven had been reached by pounce and poise;
This hesitant touch faze-shifted to a hasty dissolve
—Sugary sands sifting sinuously
Though tightening fingers crooked to close at last
An empty angry fist upon her nothingness. He gasped!
A hatted rabbit in a worn mauve waistcoat laughed;
Its albino eye from a daubed laurel’s closure
Laughed, as that funny-bunny Fate has always laughed
Whenever overreaching man guessed his guesses sure.

2 8
The furred head, moribund, profound, turned
And spake: “What neglected nail spurs these pauses,
Pulling slurring the nimble wiggle of our narrative thread?
Do I skip a blip in my story, hoary hearers?
Has consumation’s consumme soured to confusion?
Flip back a windy, lefthand page, sages, and see.
Returned, dears? Me too. I’m here, waving gravely.
Tain’t so easy to dismiss a self-eulogizing myth, is it?
This story’s story is insular and thick with tricks.

2 9
“Forgive my flash of hubris, while I loiter to insist,
Exonerating myself like a murder defence’s memoirist:
But I’m guiltless, guiltless! My omniscient narrator’s
Rumored Diety is in fine effect. I’m winged
Jove-King of these greek acres of pasty pages.
Bored of my bon homme odyssian maundering? Well, then,
Page down, my d(r)ear, inscrutible cherubs,
Pass my unflattering flounce of digression’s procession
And surpass in a click the dark prow of my tale.

3 0
“I wonder just what happened to this merry pair
The He and She of everyone and everywhere or when
During her gentle dissolution’s final cue?
Did she, nameless, moan cognomens in the approaching
Pinch of his garrolous, approaching claw?
Did she shudder like clawed rainbow trout when she saw
The roaring boy-bear’s troglodytic unencumberd maw
Lathering after her innocent, undressed tresses?
Or did her thin skin whip him, a scorpion pinned?
Did formaldehyde smear her wincing sides?

3 1
“What catastrophe’s haphazard track did they pace,
Hand in hand around the rosy road’s fated bend
Skipping to some bland fabulist’s quickly scripted ‘The End’?
Among what sunset’s sullen yellows did he reap
Her raped, awakened wheats, if he did? Or did
She winnow her weeping self away, flossed dust,
Ere his sly scythe could sigh thro’ her flaxen fields?
—But, I’m done with this stuttering narration’s
Nervous tick, and clock you back to our mainline’s

3 2
“Timeline.” Absurdio sighed against his hammock’s
Narrow netting,– for so much potential so absolutely lost
Must give one pause. His ungainly goggles
Crested a slicker pate, slid syruped perhaps,
On a ski-slope nose crinkled at some sodium
Odor, or perhaps a tinge of things ranker and fainter.
Absurdio cursed. Gangly in her dropped socks, her half-
Strangled form performed, in soliel-licked imagination,
Astericked tricks beyond conception. —A-hem,
The sinuous mystery of that trapped tadpole, Desire,
Increases in the pale, ectoplasmic tale below:

3 3
Absurdio, desire’s soldier, soldered on
His mountain-rhymer’s gogs again, divinely tighter
To his thrusting skull, blotting out svelt Venus’
Ambient, intermittent light. Slowly those eyes
Settled into stellated iris-wideness, as inside
His interior landscape darkened by degrees,
And nightrise, calm and serene, came caressing
His openness with her ever-maiden obscurities.
He scanned half-doubtingly about. And she
Was there, scarcely visible, a luminous intrusion,
A pressure of touching light that arced and ached,

3 4
Spilling balm into the mini-labyrith of his brain.
The setting exactly trite and tragic as before,
Ressurrected when he thumbed ‘Restore.’
Ilex trees, or their avuncular, venusian
Mulberry mirror doubles, dappled lashy elongations
On the foreshortened, deforrested ground of his being
In leopard blotches. His smaller, computer-generated
Self stepped sprightly a miniaturized horizon,
Lent a tightrope-walker’s lightness nightly
By a sparse, spectacular gravity that doubled
The veiny, vulnerable, fluer-de-lis neck-lengths
Of the arising flowers that haunted dawn.

3 5
Her (was she warm?) form poured in oblagattoes;
Her breasts’ concupiscence floresced and finished
In attentive nipples; he shivvered, diving
Inner-spacewards again, unstoppable, blushed
By the program’s thoughtful prop of rose backlight.
A soapy sigh scrubbed from his bubbling lungs;
How he tautly longed to eye her mufflered infinite!
That which hung encoded, skiffed and scudded, behind
Scratched cataracts of her teeming, purblind eyes.

3 6
Created conscious again in his dream-ripple,
Delux-outfitted in apple pants and a velour-
Lined waistcoat swarming with swan buttons,
Potted and puffed, germily germinating Absurdio
Bloomed, attempting the Tristian romantic manouver
But abandoned by the stern narrative frame
Of a contrite Christian’s uber-grace.
His hands, as pawns, nakedly displayed
His emotions’ opening gambit in a dream-slur
Of utter lovliness. He touched, she shuddered,

3 7
As if to dissipate, a distraught wisp
Or shy butterfly flittered from a lepidopterist’s
Urgent lurch, more cuffed than coaxed;
A cranky collapse inaugurated by the drastic lack
Of available, unavailing, RAM space.
She shivered, but held. Her spongy shoulder
Underwent a faint shimmer, as if conscious-
Ness were being beamed aboard. Her patient skin
Was still all ash and shale, but her awaiting hair
Lost its stiff crispness, gained a honey-tone
And the delectable bubble-bounce of “body”.

3 8
Deciphered sounds now entered her transparent ears.
A distant bird minced its watery treblings
With the gorgon terrors of her first, lurid heartbeat
In her registering brain. A pale breath escaped,
Although Absurdio would’ve sworn he had not heard
Any inaugural breath tipple and enter. Her eyes reared
To know what stun had touched her as they flared
Into wet, instamatic life. Their pristine prisms
Socketed a world within her newly permeable skull.

3 9
Yet where was this wizard woman’s twinkly spark
Among all the engrossing chaos of her fabulous mass?
He had not yet eyed within her eye that smarmy,
Human cloud of becoming fogging her skyey iris
Which marks troublous love’s trembling, intrepid step
Contra-distinct from lisping lust’s insipid limp.
Not yet, not yet. His playful paradise was still
Too innocent in its ivied, idyllic clarity
To boast of that human ruination dubbed Love.
Stars crossed gaily, like kites, in night’s meadows above.

4 0
There was always some sort of gangly changing going on
Within the weathery swirl of this inner world
Beset by the dramatic setting of Romance’s
Hurrying hurricanes and tortorous calms.
Her addled belt slipped at his toying touch
To couch in the creative vulcan valleys
Of her slippery thighs. His dizzy head
Danced, lassoed with animate, singing stars,
As in Disney-visions where cool cutlery
Carols hausfraus and bold boy hunters subdue, solo,
Lugubrious bull-moose. He was in love, she lived!

4 1
A freckled Mrs. Frankenstein whose veritable veins
Pulsed bloomed beads of blood up her supple neck.
Living swans lounged in her frowning brow;
Honey lozenges waterfalled her scuffy alto
Into azure pools of purer contralto. She spoke!
Her new words, her first, purred: “Absurd—….”
But he had already stopped her half-
Articulate baby talk with the sweeter understanding
Contained in a kiss he hoped unending.

4 2
Her happenstance phantom, her tech-lechery
Semblable, spasmed by benign self-deceit,
Flowered into frissoned being on his primped lips.
He let the solipcistic kiss linger, linger,
As a royal rosepetal will huddle on kinked, kingly lips.
The gamey wind was game to applaud their parading,
Clapping aspen leaves whose whirl on them was hubbed.
What they knew somehow was what was love.
Of the universe’s immensest aviary, they knew
That they themselves were the central doves.

4 3
For this sceptred instant, grinningly alive
In their sparkling cave and sprinkled spire,
Absurdio and his girl were joyously joined,
Twin instances of some remoter, scumbled One,
Identical startled arcs of a single desire.
A stately elm jigsawed the rooted stars
With wagging shadows, while moonlit music tooted.
Oh, they kissed and kissed until heaven split,
And split again in moody, Mandelbrotian, fractal fit.

4 4
Love herself had jokingly sponsored their sparring war
Of embraces, each deep cincture tighter and tighter.
Her teasing taffeta said slurring, silken mumbles
Against his entranced hips burning rope-burn sudden
At her cloistered damsel’s clotted knot veiled within.
She did not hesitate, but with rapid hand
And palliative tongue urging extra surges
Moved with the remover to remove.
Had History’s grainy memory vouchsafed their names
Their wantonness had been famous. As is,
They tickled and tilted, strained and parted;
And strained again, until joy’s jubilant hulahoop
Rattled to napping quiet at their intermixed feet.

4 5
And the nasty narrator choked on their lifesaver
Halo (rubyfruitier).



Unused Bits

[for climax] 
On her home-town Mon Venus, the swarthy pitcher mounts 

Against death's delerious impact and mossy Time's 
Verdant verdict, that takes back (not yet, not yet!) 
Our personal, rag-tag, tattered, hole in the ground 
With wild mounds of lushness. Held winceless