Thursday, April 19, 2007

Stars lift their skirts

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Vonnegut Five

My work has been far too serious of late. Sentence after
sentence, the loss of Vonnegut, five soldiers killed in one
day in the filthy cradle of civilization, another psychopath
to wend our collective ways through yet again. Nature and
mirth have evaporated leaving only the lizard glinting in
his spring mating colors dangling limp and broken from the
beak of a shinebuffed crow, blue as black in the gentle sun.

In the evening, I hear the yawning of new blossoms outside
my window and misidentify them as night-blooming jasmine,
nebulous moonflower, petaled archaeopteryx or some common
fossil of my great and storied ignorance. This does not dull the
scent and I sway like a drunken curtain before the open glass as
the stars lift their skirts to show me what they’re truly made of.

There’s a white dog been laid up on the side of the road now
six months, hit by a car and left to stink like catted-on carpet.
His black eyes are still open and this poem wants to ascribe
Egyptian dimensions and metaphorize him as Osiris’ flat
watchdog in some vigilant afterlife. But that isn’t light either.

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Seriousness has so many colors that seem to overrun all the others these days. Life becomes a stain and the only way to get it out is by copious amounts of laughter. But such lathers are expensive and unavailable to those who have too much. It seems only the poor know how to laugh anymore and they’re not laughing much either. This piece is fraught with seriousness and there’s no way out.

Let’s try this: I came across this marvelous quote attributed to Dorothy Parker. It goes like this: The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity. That isn’t ha-ha funny at all, but it holds a kind of serious light-heartedness at the core of its condensation. I hope to see a rainbow this spring so I might have something radiant to write about. I’ve written many rainbow poems and nearly every one got serious by the second stanza. Any new one won’t stand a chance.

Now I’ll have to make a title for this piece so I can be done with it and it with me. This is how it goes every damn time. The poem and I reach an impasse and by the end of it agree to halt linguistic hostilities and reconcile towards some mutual truce wherein I cease teasing it into what it wants to be in spite of whatever I do. So I’ll go up and sit with that dog on the road, warn Osiris when the pungent moonflower crests.

Joseph Gallo
April 18, 2007

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Blogger Joni parried...

Such great moments in this one. Bravo!

April 19, 2007 6:59 PM  
Anonymous aharamanx parried...

There must be some weird planetary shift of late. Things have seemed a bit too serious of late on this side of the world as well...could be the water. LOL.

Excellent once again, Joseph.

April 20, 2007 3:42 AM  
Blogger Joseph Gallo parried...

The serious moments of water. Hmmmm, kinda like that for a title; many departure points in that. Makes for a good workshop exercise.

Okay, since you both conspired to form it, I'd like for both of you to have something ready by weekend's end.

Joni & Aharamanx: Ready, set, go!

See you both at the other end!

April 20, 2007 9:44 AM  
Blogger Joni parried...

Damn. I'm still working on my last assignment from you! LOL

Maybe we'd just like to give the title to you as a gift for all you've given us.

Nope. I didn't think you'd buy that! LOL

April 20, 2007 1:46 PM  
Blogger Joseph Gallo parried...

Nice try, indeed. But I was already going to take it on, after I attend to some other things I have to write first. But yes, let's make it official for us and for whoever else would like to takt this on.

Here's your title. Write.

"The Serious Moments Of Water"

Or some derivation of same. Go!
I'll have mine by Sunday night. I hope.

April 20, 2007 3:51 PM  
Anonymous aharamanx parried...

Excellent idea, Joseph. Here's my contribution.

The Serious Moments of Water

Which is the sin that water cannot wash away? Where is the river upon which the deepest regret can be cast that it will not be swept away to join the emerald green vastness of some sea to await the unseen hand which will mould it into a cloud to rain down upon humanity? Forever mindful that we live downstream of someone else’s filth, we wander unsheltered through the acid rain of all the sins that are daily drained from the cesspit of civilisation, trying desperately to stay clean, body, mind and soul. Absolving ourselves of our guilt and our sins we perform our daily ablutions mesmerised by this cosmic elixir of life. It speaks to us all in different tongues to be sure, this great equaliser of man and beast, being the one substance that no living thing can survive without. Prayers are offered daily that water maintains dominion over dust. Omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent, it is all things to all beings, perhaps water is the true God whom we seek, the formless form made manifest.

21 April 2007

April 21, 2007 2:36 AM  
Anonymous owld_skipper parried...

i drop by regularly, but don't always comment...i really like this piece Joseph...thanks for providing great things to read...

owld (barry)

(channeling e.e. cummings for the moment)

April 21, 2007 11:50 AM  
Blogger Joni parried...

My offering regarding The Serious Moments of Water is here:

And nice poem Aharamanx! I would have commented sooner, but didn't want to read yours until I'd completed mine.

April 23, 2007 10:25 AM  
Anonymous aharamanx parried...

Cheers, Joni. Yours is excellent - I've commented on your blog. Let's do this again sometime.

Now then Joseph....where's yours??

April 23, 2007 11:58 PM  
Blogger Joseph Gallo parried...

Thanks OS and ladies, my poem is nearly complete. Patience as Rome did not burn in a day. ;-)

May 02, 2007 10:18 PM  

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