nacrés par des lunes pleines
ou noircis par des lunes nouvelles
Je me souviens des balcons à l’aube
près du bois de cerisiers sauvages
où, assis sur des divans moisis
on buvait encore du vodka
parfumé par un grenadier en fleur
Je me souviens du froissement
du papier à cigarettes entre mes doigts
et ensuite la crépitation des tiges grillés
Je me souviens que l’eau faisait moins froid
que le vent contre mon corps ouvert à la nuit
Je me souviens que parmis tous ces amis
tous ces amants, j’étais bafoué, seul, honni
Composed during my first Parisian séjour, autumn of 1993, in my chambre de bonne aux combles du numéro 273 de la rue des Pyrénées in that city’s sector surréaliste. You will notice that I’ve deftly managed to refouler my prime specimen of Gallic textwork with l’enjambement of the phenomenological flux des choses revécues dans et par la mémoire (despite the extreme bibulosity and the small groping experiments we conducted in nocturnal naturism, the largely diestral souvenirs I still retain of those nights find it difficult to give a face to, let alone name, “ces amants”) avec the etymological uncertainty of the Flouzianian capital’s nom propre et historique: is it derived, as the flouzophones would have it, from the hearty “aux étangs!” the region’s rowdy coureurs de bois are said to have shouted faute de mieux? or from the more staid “New Owen City” later exiles and immigrants supposedly baptized their utopian coin of the Appalachik ghetto with? Its true derivation, of course, stems from the Sihlaucal (Coast Fukari) olnziiankta, ‘river-mouth big town’, but that is by the by.
gisant dans les bulles de raisins
où brûlent les filaments du soleil
Je suis le jeu lié au matin
des brumes où patauge la patte-d’oie
des rues pâtissantes sous la pluie
Je suis je joug liseré des liasses
de cartouches lovées sur les poitrines
des soldats travestis en terre à patin
Je suis les pas du vent lumineux
sur la piste gommable des chemins brisés
où je suis encore le joyau
des joues voilées où volent toujours
la neige le milan et la nuit
With divorce proceedings proceeding apace on both sides of the Arathu, I was forced to curtail mes recherches gallofranchichiques and return to Owlstain in the early summer of 1994; there I learned that J (for whom this élégie nonpareille is in memoriam), a fellow former inmate of GWIFA, had been among the hapless Yazdehan, Huerta-Fukari, and Tixputana resistance fighters whose plan to retake Black Yurt from the Intrussyans had failed so pathetically. Just after dawn on the winter solstice, the freedom fighters, disguised as migrant glaneuses, had crossed into the Arist suzerainty simultaneously from the Flouzianian, New Lexican, and Wyoming sides of the border and apparently made their way down through the ancient terraced glebelands of Tulpuyauor, intent on joining up with their distaff comrades-in-arms who had earlier infiltrated several of the dockside lupanares. Treachery and inclement weather, however, put paid to those tactics, as the diligent reader will glean from any of the usual sources whose more intrepid details have informed, naturally, my elegiacal textwork. A fortnight after being wounded and captured during the intense fighting that took place in the northeastern suburbs, my friend died ignominiously from gangrene and repeated exposure in one of the aforementioned taules, which had been converted by Saliba’s Galoots into a cachot de fortune.
à l’abri de la novation du planning
écotoxique absolument numérique
planté effectivement du même acabit.
Aussitôt la pensée bute contre un obstacle
autant que la pente butte à contresens
obstinément avant la perçante bâcle
en contrevenant l’aveugle obéissance.
Ensuite on met l’accent sur cette théorie
entendue, meublée d’accessoires sûrs
théoriquement, mais entièrement meurtrie
par les accidents tiers de l’autocensure.
Nous voyons poindre à l’horizon un problème:
nous venons de pointer d’horreur un théorème.
She was one of those choice, fey, insidiously charming creatures inhabiting the entrancingly mirrored medoid among the rosy rookbeds and bewitched bucolic something of an enchanted island a bigger, more respectable, more competent authority on the subject than I has characterized as “nymphic (that is, demoniac).” Although I naively believed the ceremony to be all in good clean sociophysiological fun on the Playground of Taboo, and not legally or morally binding in any known municipality or universe fictive or otherwise, I dutifully, even heartily, consummated our mock vows of love, devotion, and etc. sometime avant la madrugada du St. Sein, tautologue, c’est-à-dire, le jour J de l’année zéro de l’Ère Sociophysiologique même at which Bernard Vighdan, the numero uno of our founding faculty’s sestina of polylexical exiles, authoritatively mantled in a particolored Mountain Fukari Tlaatlata serape of antlion silk, had officiated. Yet the ticklish agate-eyed kitten (her pert rump and smooth ardent mound, I recall, had been swathed in avidly peeled off perhaps even friable cotton fabric printed with a savage ailurian theme that left behind a fulgurous afterimage on her diligent caramel-and-honey-hued hips, and her negligible choli mercifully unlatched in front) had not only the ensanguined evidence of her own deflowered infatuation to back up her carnal claim on me, but the claws of the Owlstain judicatory itself which, when confronted by the summoned minyan with its nonce magus that had been privy to the previous evening’s instaurational débauche, duly ruled the ménage à propos, and incised our mutual cognomina into the city’s matrimonial register, whereupon the town-crier, with a hymeneal yelp, transmuted ex post facto our quondamly undeclaimed banns into the public nuptials of Mr. and Mrs. M. S. and Maryam née Ravigiallo put author’s name here. I found myself, thus, legally obliged to ravish, at an almost ultradian frequency during the dipsomaniacal “peaks” of our passion (dont le lieu, souvent, was precisely that hutch sous le pont El-Achim où cria mon édifiant enfant), a wistful, lithe, tawny-coated, raven-haired, exquisite, poignant being whom the clear light of day, despite all the professional wiles she deployed at night (viz. my “Sonnet impair d’Owlstain n° 1”), revealed to be but a child — whose, I’ve never been quite sure of. Nor am I not quite sure anent this diligent rime argile’s originary motivations (ibtida ra), but the need to supplement the many times daily clitalytical divastigations of my novatory novia (an utterly annulled yet still rather fraught Tetrastic memory by the time the Parisian present of the poem's composition, spring 1995, a eu lieu) with some dialectical investigations and, as the title indicates, downright plagiaries (Westermarck, Sirine, Lefebvre, Lassalle, Fraser, Briffault, etc.), of the political economy (PE) of marriage must surely have been one of them.
Le prince poldève à l’atout abattu:
Ma seule étoupe est moite, et mon lut huilé
Pose le sol nul sous le mâle pattu.
Dans le nid d’étuve où tu m’as effilé,
Me rendant pause dans la mer Arathu,
La flèche perçait tant à mon coin filé,
Et la trame ouvrait pan au rat courbatu.
Suis-je l’amont de l’El? Ou l’aval de l’Os?
Ma source se rugit encore du bruit:
J’ai ravi la grue, et j’ai nargué le fruit...
Et j’ai, au fond vaincu, travesti l’Éros:
Modelant, tourmenté, le lis de l’oracle,
Son appât d’anse, et ses crins du réceptacle.
Given the handsome proliferation of semen she traduced her endemic noria with, imbibed with her every sphincter and orifice, common sociophysiological sense predicted that all those mucose homunculi would make an emic inroad into her demoniac irrepressibility, and, in time, tame her sensual exuberance with a more gravid, less receptive torpor. Fortunately, some other cunt’s halo (the picturesque Anglo-Saxonic of the construction aspires less to shock than to reek evocatively uncouth) — specifically, that of the ironic dame, the nomadic reine à rance idiome who’d anointed my youthful scepter in Agua Prieta some years prior (vid., e.g., my Ars poetica, my Sonnet n° 2) — emerged from the cyetic shadows to seat, with diligent unrivaled mahout- and mouthcraft, my unrequited thurl’s ache on top of and inside as well as athwart her cuneal troth’s howdah, or something like that. Meanwhile, I was extracting from ce livre exquis écrit par the Poldevian prince Miano Driec (to whom I dedicate this perfectly pair specimen of rime argile), A Dictionary of Okiao, quelque bons mots which schizomythically assembled themselves, along with a brain-wrenching quiver of shrieking memories continuously reenacting the ballochorous gusto with which our depraved bouncing bambino smeared with lochia-clotted vernix caseosa and trailing an alien fourre-tout dehisced my beloved, my estranged, my never-again-to-be-nulliparous darling’s maiden coir, into the textwork in question some years after I’d managed to extricate myself from the dire anomic partouze our triadic nemo de domo sua extrahi debet had devolved into and find asylum in my current serena domicilia at 23 villa Ballu in the city’s barrio literario.
Avec ton pavois liant, soit maniable
Même au frottage inouï, clastique, pliable
Des raies saillies avec l’arc de ma cervix!
Dans ma croupe aussi tu avais mis l’hélix
D’analyse de ton ouïe conciliable,
Et m’avais doigté de l’allure oubliable,
Car ta musse m’a fait un enfant du Styx.
Je me sens depuis comme une source ouverte
Où tu me lèches, tu me pinces au strigile
Des sentences ascèses, de la langue verte...
Tu m’avais initié à la rime argile,
Docteur Gryx, afin que mon âpre vigile
Unit le mythe à la phrase découverte!
Like a satyr-loined poilu — vert, armé, snobinard — at large in the tropical decadence of the most luxurious of maisons closes, my gallophone textwork tautly tents the ample pleats of the Appalachik plus-fours I more commonly clothe the diligent corps nu of my terse northern âme with. Hence, this author’s reputation for being all too parsimonious in person but utterly prolific, perhaps even profligate, in the preterite tense. Yet passion, as Ouida’s alias Ada says, will not wait. And it’s precisely to the sweaty sessions of heat-erautist anti-therapy (which the sodality’s acronymic parlance more swiftly conveys with the monosyllabic, HEAT) I first engaged in with Dr. I. H. Gryx, rue Brine in the 12th, following my medusal exodus from Owlstain that I owe my ability to engage, not only more spontaneously with the aforementioned bonny binioutiste of Romer’s Samba I’ve recently scrimmaged most marvelously with (par exemple, dans les marges of my prophetic Sun Sulta : Treachery), but also more deftly with the argillaceous muck of myth, memory, et les mots qui les expriment in the pliable verse-pots of the clay-rhyme sonnets after Gérard de Nerval of which this is the second I’ve been able to throw, shape, glaze, and fire in the fantastical ouvroir of my poetastical pouvoir à me mettre dans les bottes et les grottes et les mottes et les crottes et les chiottes et les maillottes et les cocottes et bien sûr les fillottes d’autrui which is the veritable peak-stone (agore bar) of sensate hermeneutics!
D’Iris, chère à l’oursin sous le pont-levis,
Et, gisant dans les yeux d’un fou cochevis,
Y larde le butoir des fosses vulvaires.
Sa lavure use la déesse larvaire,
Moule la mie de la couche où elle vit,
Tord les stries ailées de la mouche ravie,
Et s’impose, lasse, éteinte, au dur calvaire!
L’égard déjette le prison de l’abeille,
Le lance, le verse au fond de la corbeille...
C’est à l’abri bien, par-delà la lacune.
La défaite a vrillé son conquêt bouclé:
Chats, poissons, oiseaux, filles de monsieur Klee —
Et les poupées qui sautent à travers la lune!
It somehow transpired that my estranged senior wife’s estranged co-wife Maryam was and still is the niece of the former, Renata, and both were and still are cousins of the darling Tixputanita waif, Ada (aka Ouida) Romer, who informed me of all this and who, while only a year younger than the latter, could plausibly pass as the not so elder, though far less teratological, sister of ditto’s, that is, my, misbegotten whelp of a moribund larval cephalopod. Now, while your typical unwashed Dichter is content to excrete a mythic moment of imagistic pabulum, a sessile polyp of crystallized poésie, your true daughters and sons initiated on ISOCPHYS’s Playground of Taboo into the advanced arts of rime argile aim to shatter the insipid myth with the vascular moraine of schizomythology, aerate the parochial moment with the living fibers of sociophysiology, and so arrive at a more muscular structure that pulses and yearns and moans and moves with the most prehensile agility imaginable. I recall that when I first glimpsed her, she was intensely contemplating the incorrupt rondeurs bâties of Roma Antica’s tense “Hermaphrodite endormi.” I had resigned myself to maintaining a safe distance but her flirtatious piercing glance back at me overcame my habitual timorous resort to impotent fantasy, and so I followed this giddy bear cub of a moth-like michette to Auguste Clésinger’s lush, recusant, tangibly writhing “Femme piquée par un serpent,” thence to Alexandre Falguière’s shothole nu, “Tarcisius martyrisé,” and so on to other stations of worship — Jacqueline Bez’s zealous Paffenwerk, “Femme liane;” Pierre Bouret’s uncouth obra regalada, “Figure couchée;” Jan Dambrin’s banal debased ontological “Éveil;” Pablo Gargallo’s otiose “Mujer tumbada en hueco” — with her staying always a few steps ahead of me, keeping up the museum-goer’s pretense of stopping and looking, then glancing back at me and fleeing just as I reached her until we arrived at Alberto Giacometti’s extemporaneous “Femme égorgée” where she sighed volubly and did not move when I accosted her and clutched my hand tight in her hot damp fist and led me into a certain room whose ecstatic walls were drenched with the resplendent works of the artist I’ve incised into my textwork proper même and we stood before said artist’s “Tanz des trauernden Kindes” and she pressed all the trance-inducing sedulousness of her electric body against what by then was a most prominent member of our game little party and elle s’est agenouillée câlinement and devoutly raised her adorable roral eyes où je lisait en avant, as it were, all the tears l’étireuse would later shed in my arms for her mère meurtrie — vlan! — postnatalement and then she lowered them diligently to the task in her dyspneal mains’ étreinte and I tasted the osculatory rapacity, the clinging clay-like epithelium, or “key-skin” as she called the sweet mucosa lining the lips, aurorally dizened, of her contractile bouche.
Violée sur les remparts, tu romps l’aventure
Ivre, lésant, promue, ma vile aperture:
O milles petites morts d’une parvenue!
Devrais-je avorter l’affreuse larve menue
Qui veille et pétrit dans cette âpre monture
Dépouillée, gavée par ta morne pature
Que tu as faite avec tes tripes malvenues?
Tu aimes qu’un jour ils verront que tu m’as plu
Dans la manse inerte après qu’il avait plu,
Après que tu m’as lavée avec tes pleurs...
Mais ils ne verront qu’un rêve sans avenir:
La pluie et les larmes ne feront survenir
Qu’une infâme pruine qui ternira tes fleurs.
This volume’s printer advises me, as we go to press, anent a disparaging word to the effect that this pliable evocation of, not the arts, but rather, the rats of love which I composed in the vortex of the breakdown from which I was recuperating at my father’s house in tropical Beulah early in 1999 bears an uncanny resemblance to a confessional poem, entitled “Vernal Imposture,” published in the Owlstain SCAT around the time (autumn 1998) of its, that is my textwork’s inspiration, by my occasional playtoy and colleague at ISOCPHYS in Owlstain, INTEC in Lutèce, and in drag elsewhere (see, for instance, my Street Acts), D. I. Swopes. Now, whatever superficial resemblances, even identities, that may obtain between her work and mine, the mimicry is more of the innocuous Batesian variety than of the noxious Müllerian; in any case, the spirit of the two cannot be more altarian. To wit: Hers is a topical species of versified ephemera chock full of grandiloquent spite and gynandromorphic jealousy towards a distinguished author, Velasto Prastier, she seduced one evening after he had tippled a bit more than usual at a sociophysiological conference being conducted in the Agore Bar of Glamporium in Owlstain and found himself ripe enough to do a bit of adventurous snorkeling in her coelenterate étangs, but not enamored enough to more soberly scaphander himself so as to thoroughly sound the fimbriate bathystome of her cirripede seas the next morning or therein after. Mine, on the other hand, is a schizomythic tour de force of rime argile imaginatively straddling the stichomythic pathos of space (vid. infra), strabismally imbricating the schizothymic anguish of those aeons of dullness my existence (Dasein) had become after the froward flouzy, the depraved damsel, la chatte chatoyante (have you ever noticed how she appears younger to the hebephile, older to the teleiophile, shorter to the brachyophile, taller to the hypsophile, plus laide to the teratophile, more pulchritudinous to the charistophile, and so on?) one had revealed the whole of one’s faith and optimism to in a blithe blissful complacent missive sketching out, with swinging wire and dangling words hung from a hook in the voûte of my mansarde (see my “What I’m Working On Now”), the whole of one’s life’s work and — and she, sardonic mocking she, with the ridiculous and humiliating way she laid it out in her “small tri-monthly multilingual journal of arts, writing, philosophy, natural history, and sundry cultural stuff,” nº 6, fall 1998 — she made me pull down and trample the fragile, articulate, ramified, multi-dimensional, and now utterly despised, distorted, unrecognizable structure of it beneath my own bare bleeding feet! You say that no singular being can be the exclusive locus of plural déroulements, myriad Entwicklungen, a gallimaufry of chimerical ontogenies? I say any mother who’s ever felt the tentacled spawn rape her from the inside out during that everted gangbang of wall-eyed (“It’s called albinism, love!”) parturient fists specialists in the field call “schizogamous epitoky” knows exactly what I mean. Which is why, despite all the humiliation and rage I felt anent her and her treachery and her “uncles” lurking menacingly in the hedges of the labyrinth beneath that tall instar of Quinault’s mountain fir (Rhopalotsuga quinaultia Goldbarg, 1925) in the park atop Mount Gimmor that so eerily resembles that hillock dans les Jardin des Plantes où there’s also a labyrinth presided over by a tall conifer (Cedrus libani A. Rich.) except that in Owlstain one has a panoramic view of the treacherous city and a third of the rarefied frame is taken up by snow-capped Mount Spitmarkx looming over Fukariland in the east and from the dazzling western vanishing point in the Arathu Sea there furtively peek the perky twin fumaréoles of the Far Gimmals while in Paris everything is damp and gray and rotting, I readily handed over the extorted parcel of tetrarchic wealth her economic marplot demanded for the embryotoky — at least she’d be spared the horrible brisance that had rent her cousin Maryam; spared the bitter sagesse that a cartilaginous, gilled, parasitic, pycnogonidic thing was still alive and swimming somewhere in a restricted research aquarium — and, naïve cosmopolite that I’d become in my exile, I paid no thought to any probable co-pay schemes the confederated municipalities of Owlstain and environs might have contributed to the amortization of such a procedure. You say that no unique node of space can be the omniphane’s oiketerion, the pantomorph’s habitus, the quiddative runt’s pleroma? I say any epileptic who’s ever insufflated his schizophoric ptilinum with a devout fit of musculomorphic hemolymph and split the cranial puparium’s fontanelle, bursting through into the fantastic ague of that calyptered fugue known as “consciousness” (Bewusstsein), knows exactly what I mean. Reality is manifold, or it is nothing at all.
Par l’enduit vert et aluné de l’ennui,
Romps-tu l’aile ventrue, Dr. E. B. Nwie,
Comme on fend l’ocelle d’une saturnie?
Et cette vertu morne, minée, dégarnie
De suc comme le vide thorax d’un sec paon-de-nuit —
T’empares-tu en comme un luron qui, à huis
clos, se fait violer sa salope ternie?
Elles ne reviennent plus. La chaleur s’éteint
Que tu croyais éprise; la psyché geint,
S’évanouit sous la pression de tes caresses...
Et malgré les soins de ta cure, la douceur
De tes paroles, tu n’es qu’un ravisseur —
Et moi, phalène au soleil, ébloui(e) par la paresse...
Many authors (Firbank springs immediately to mind, as does Roussel) have exploited the butterfly trope; some, the moth ditto (Roussel again); none until I, however, has enrolled both moths and butterflies into his or her army of lepidopteran metaphors. Yes, I ken the apparent contradiction. Roussel’s, you see, was a literal gambit (“Les vers de la doublure dans la pièce du fort pantalon rouge” indeed!) driving a linear plot; mine, pure litotes more slantly evoking the cymophanous subjectivity of the heat-erautist anti-therapy I later enlisted, following the spell with Dr. Gryx, the services of Dr. E. B. Nwie, rue Bicarrée, 14ème arrondissement, to tide me over with. And none, furthermore, has invoked the natural clade of the twain in such a graphic manner as I, wrapping morphological ambiguity with a veil of gender ditto, such that, as it were, one would be forced to enculer l’autre à fin qu’elle puisse enfanter plus tard à travers the more usual stomata, but that is a matter for the anatomists to decide. Meanwhile, there is rime argile.
Dans l’écume qui pleuvait sur la seule Rome
De nos souvenirs, souvenirs qui cueillirent
De la bergerie de l’avenir, l’arome
Des microbes pourris des moments qui faillirent
Avoir été emportés par le maëlstrom
Du présent où les loups du temps tressaillirent
Dans la forêt dense de l’Être qui est le prodrome
Du Devenir qui n’est pas encor devenu,
Du Devenir qui va redevenir toujours!
C’est un lapsus de mémoire retenu
Par l’ardeur spectrale du corps saugrenu,
L’infinie spirale où l’âme tient son séjour,
Or — c’est ce que j’aime — l’abyssal esprit malvenu!
Certain gelded marplots, shunned by all, loved by none (not even, contra Stephen Daedalus, their mothers), and iagier even than the iagiest Iago, seem always to be lurking, like a demented freemartin of the seven seas surreptitiously ejaculating the corrosive slime mold of its thwarted lust into the minutest interstices some scurvy-dazed sailor unlyrically cobbles his skewed vision of landlocked domesticity out of, at the periphery of whatever potential or actual dyad of heterosexual attraction I find myself embarked upon. At those fragile moments, for instance, when the larval couple must needs part, however briefly, to heed the baser compulsions of material reality, or to impetuously refresh the drinks, it — I call the aquatic hyena it, for its gender is as indeterminate as its sex is indiscriminate — it is ready, like a crafty trichechid pollard of the littoral zone, to pounce, and the sly manatee’d spin its envenomed confabulations into the ears of whichever partner it deemed most vulnerable, most susceptible to its smutty innuendos. These latter infect and fester, molder and pullulate until, one day, the lithe lovely being whom one had sworn undying physical love to announces, most unexpectedly, that she has been, not collaborating on some abstruse theory of time and tense she wants to somehow “perform” (interpréter) in her next piece, but rather “sleeping with” (coucher avec) the deviant, devious, cicuta-spewing cetacean in question and that I, ever the ingenuous romantic, must vacate the premises pronto. And as I limp betrayed into the flayed void of forlorn depravity that is les bas de la Butte Montmartre, the pawky beast reappears to — console me! Yet though the ungulate liar takes care to hide its real intentions — to poison, seduce, destroy — behind a mask of benevolent concern, on occasion the obese lamantin dysphemizes so vilely — one night, for instance, as we stumbled out of une boîte and along les berges de la Seine and fumbled with crémaillère and crochets, the creature burst out, enigmatic and sing-songily obscene, “But the other cunt’s halo is free to do just about any sly stunt that would please you!” — that it gives the game away, and so thus begins another cycle of shunning and cunning and running off with first her, then me, then Moéu again, and so on, but never the twain of us in a more imaginatively sociophysiological ménage (vid., soit El Descosido, soit Érartsos, ou Les rats d’Éros, supra). As it was, I recall that my first flirt avec the iconic installationneuse, Moéu Noäu Nin, took place over cocktails chez Nobé Arinami during the 1996 INTEC, and quand je me suis trouvé que je devais céder to her passing need to consult briefly with the latter (an old friend) on a pressing though rather dull matter of business (the logistics or funding or something of her next happening or performance or whatnot) and I stepped into the courtyard to contemplate the waxing moon, I found attached to my elbow the tethytherian tentacles of a certain D. I. Swopes who claimed, if I parsed the flatulent submarine mammal’s garbled patois correctly, that several years earlier we had been engaged in promiscuously textual shenanigans on Glamporium’s Playground of Taboo pendant l’instauration de l’ISOCPHYS in Owlstain and that I had not only acquiesced to, but had “downright wallowed in” (the animal’s words, not mine) the situation of biune dialexicalia in, by, for, or with which its pinnipederastic dugong thumbs had palpated my tenderest parole, its bristly prehensile sirenian snout had beslobbered my fluent langue. “Je pense que vous vous trompez, meussieudame. Cette nuit-là, je vous assure, je fêtais mes noces avec une personne beaucoup plus jolie, beaucoup plus jeune, et beaucoup plus fille, que vous,” and I deplocked its probiscoid suckers from my flesh and rushed, urticarious welts blossoming in every commissure the beast had dared muzzle and grope, back to the shelter of Moéu’s winsome, impish, glabrous mirth. Later, returning from a spell dans les waters, I came again upon the spayed mernightmare called Swopes idly chatting up my Moéu, her (the Maori lady’s, not the mad capon’s) vulpine ears erect, her (ditto) manner strangely distant after it, the mephitic sea ox, had espied me and swam just out of striking range where it continued, throughout what by then had become an undersea charade of courtship and conquest, to chew its noxious cud in the ametropic murk. She held out for almost a week, and I, who in my bibulous diligence am not used to more than a few hours d’affilée d’abstinence (a defining quirk of perhaps all workers in the field, who employ these brief bouts of enforced, sober celibacy to generate those sorts of textwork the sheer charm of which is sure to entice stray hierodules to imbibe and recite such palpable incantations as cannot but fail to evince the desired theophany), was forced to seek recourse in any number (preferably a Sophie Germain prime) of game lycéennes (cf. L’Aurore) the streets of Lutèce literally formicate at all hours of the day or night with, mais je divague. We also went, before the triangle became so obtuse as to be untenable in any known or hypothesized geometry, to Barcelona, where we stayed in her father’s vast flat on the rambla de Catalunya, and, apparently, according to the poem, which I wrote mostly in a place near place Clichy on the rue de Rome called “Café Bar Tabac l’Ariel” (hence the title), Rome. But haven’t I mentioned the dugongid Swopes slightly less acerbically elsewhere? Indeed I have (cf. op. cit.). But that was post Gryx and avant Nwie, the sequelae of HEAT sessions with the former consisting largely of a sort of thesmophoric somnolence of the sense of, surtout, ressentiment; of the latter, a more oschophoric arousal of the same. You will also notice that I have worked into the very texture of the diligent rime argile, starting with the intrasouvenereal caesura and ending with the “toujours” verlainien, une petite allusion to the rather grave notions of la poetica imposible concocted by an author born, according to the vulgate calendar, exactly seventy-two years and three days avant mine own coming into the light, said notions being something along the lines of how the so-called “true poet” (poeta de verdad) should be “braced” by la poetica imposible, rather than discouraged by it, and kept “continually on the move, always trying (probando siempre) to make hoy catch up with mañana by a rapid casting back (retiro rápido) of said hoys into ayer” (Gervais Trober, El Asfodelo Dudoso, p. viii).
éparpillé de carrefours filants
dont tu te paies la fiole plurielle
en faufilant les dingues anges
qui déploient leurs ailes éffilées
de l’orée confuse au fond limpide
sur la feuille que tu filètes
avec ta plume canulaire
que tu filoutes aux griffes
filoniennes où filtrent les traits
nodaux des multiples visages affolés
des lichéneuses voyelles délabrées:
filoches des bouches, cicatrices des voix
filigranes des yeux, noyaux des doigts
Seven years after my former fellow inmate at GWIFA, J, died, I return again to Owlstain on sociophysiological business and learn that D, whom I had known since our time together at TBS in Tixpu, had also recently died — like J, exactly a fortnight after the winter solstice! He had been living and working as a caricaturist in Agua Prieta for both Tiliar Tracks!, a humorous bi-weekly, as well as that city’s more satirical hebdomadaire, La Piste. Sources say he was on the verge of a creative breakthrough that would have transformed his incisive pen-on-paper technique into a more polychromatic oleo, egg tempera, acrylic, and mixed media on canvas and secured his fame and fortune at a well-known gallery in the Porto Vecho district when he was laid low by — I cannot bring myself to name his ailment, his assassin. I expect any day now to read the news that it was all a cruel hoax... Okay! Enough already! Your disappearing act to make yourself famous and raise the prices of your paintings has worked! Come back! Just as I wandered then the frost-rimed streets of Owlstain, dazed by the senseless irreparable gash that had been torn in the fabric of the universe, today I wander the chestnut-and-prune-blossom-strewn streets of Lutèce and see his wire-rimmed avatars in the most unexpected places: the tawny corpulent tavil player on the mandapam of a temple in the 13th; the Senegalese proprietor of a quincaillerie on rue Poulet in the 18th; the transvestite albino driver of the numéro 69 bus that I caught at Père Lachaise and which I have taken only once because I was exhausted and late for a rendez-vous with a puny blond Slave (a true Intrussyan sloimčik!) in a café near la place des Vosges... I did not attend his funeral, though I very well could have afforded passage across the Arathu — why should I? The only person I would have wanted to see would not be there... Come back! I want to hear again the crazy-angel laugh that signals another brilliant idea, admire again the precise emphatic gestures of your ink-and-nicotine-stained fingers as you roll and light and smoke a cigarette and incise your slapstick portraits with thousands of formicating cross-hatched microglyphs that overrun, split, emasculate, and yet somehow always enhance and redeem the dog-eared page: the mordant deflation of a bloated politician, the absurd maniacal ego of an undeservedly famous author, the bittersweet nue that alternates between poignant pornstar and paphian plèbe depending on which angle you look at her from...
un crâne de loutre brille
par la lucarne percée dans l’écran
de ronces brûlées par la lune rousse
de la saison du crénage
faisant caner le cancre
contre la marée de l’équinoxe
dans la carne croupissante des étangs
Et l’arc-en-ciel ancré à l’horizon
par la lune rance du solstice d’hiver
encra la bruine du matin qui cernait la ville
créna les nids de grues qui râlent à la lune
creva l’oeil craintif qui discerne
l’écran des lunaisons
dans la caverne des années de chagrin
I have not shied away from worshipping at Ishtar’s altar, as more than one of my consorts would attest (cf. my Ars poetica, my Ariel, my cockatrice Kiko, my menteuse Gennifleur, my senior wife Renata, at least), a maturer womaninity, yet my record, if too casually scanned, bespeaks a spectrum rooted in the modes and harmonics more potamid, more epimelid, even, of the hebephiliac range of sensation. But records, as we all know, lie. And so I allowed a certain managing editor (ME) of the Owlstain SCAT to polish, with the chamois-skin straitjacket of word-transcending orality she unswaddled me out of and which lay sodden and rumpled at the foot of the printing press, this utterly textual vision of a world seen as if through the barred windows of grammar, paradoxically rendering it, the vision, more articulate and hence more timeless, more supple and yet more enduring, distinctive features of what, if you’ve come this far with me, clearly coalesce to form the diligent rime argile en hommage de la dame d’un certain âge who put out ditto in op. cit. vid. id., and then served me a steaming infusion of fleurs de tilleul before packing me home (a rented nid de grue in Glamporium, actually, where I refreshed myself, avant de dormir, with a rejuvenating philtre which, while not plus vierge, was au moins plus vivace, plus mince et plus joli(e)) in her personal, and all too adult, calèche, even though I had insisted on walking.