Ann Arbor Review
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
is an independent
International Journal & ezine
Copyright (c) 2017
AAR history note: in print 1967 - 1980. Irregular publications 1980 - 2004. As ezine 2004 - present. Most of 47 years all together....
Submissions via e-mail:
St. Stephen cathedral imprisoned me in its geometrically
Clear and distinct
Criss-crossing white precise lozenges.
But my unknown body crawled through the four-sided bars due
To my sight of a squirt of light from antique street lamp
Falling on a snake-shaped crack in the old sidewalk.
It was a terrestrial epiphany, this squib of light.
Although it felt ad infintium,
lasted less than a second, It was a scintilla,
That became a tromp l’oeil in my mentality.
The evening wind had blown apart large yellow leaves
To let through shivering silver scales as if
The sidewalk was trying to become a silver fish
And transform bricks into a silver river.
I breathed in the street lamp obscure scene
And breathing its obscurity changed my life.
Often I remember a segment of Roma, the unadorned
Church, high crumbing steps
With a basement
The bones, memento mori or a benediction.
Down the street, the Piccadilly Cafeteria
Where in front is always a crippled Gypsy child
With an unturned stolen cap for coins--
A presentation of the irremediable present.
Not far away the Baberini Palazzo where it is rumored Henry James
Once participated in a noblesse oblige tea ceremony. A ceiling is by Cortona,
Who did the ceiling for Michelangelo’s first Pieta, a ceiling
Overlooked by tourists who pretend awe when visiting San Pietro
After a short glance at the work below.
What I remember vividly is the brightness of the blood
Dripping from a severed head in a Caravaggio Painting.
The blood had been brightened by a recent expert restoration,
The blood as urbane as Christ’s dirty feet, a Caravaggio painting in the church
On Piazza Navona’s edge
I returned to my albergo and reread Spengler’ Decline of the West.
After a descant
Who with lyceum language
All proclaimed and I think even believed they are my friends,
I feel my feelings occupied another dwelling than the dwelling
Every one swore I lived in.
My feelings dwelled in an obscurant melee
That could not be deciphered.
I had thrown away the long circular package
Of poker chips a so-called friend gave me for Christmas.
This event was the last type of communication I had with anyone.
Strange, this gift.
I found poker, any type poker, boring, and had not
Played since I was five years old. I am now ninety-five.
The person who sent the gift was a psychologist
Claimed he understood both my consciousness and unconsciousness.
I asked him about my super-consciousness. He said that it was yoga
nonsense. The cosmic consciousness was also nonsense.
He remarked that I was a schizoid personality and my coffee was tepid.
He said I needed a new coffee maker. He recommended a shiny crimson device.
I told him I had a crimson-colored coffee maker,
The carafe had cracked and oozed out brown warped stars over my kitchen counter.
Everyone appeared to me as a palimpsest.
I doubted, was suspicious of everyone’s, as well as my own advertised
I was a poet in a time when poetry no longer existed.
The causation of his gentleness and empathy, the foundation
That established his non-conformity: his not being cruel
And destructive was
His dislike of people.
He quickly sensed that most people spent their lives living by lies.
Also, they had no deep understanding of the lies they revered as absolute truth.
Everyone seemed to be a fraud, living by self-deception.
He despised the popular and praised entertainment of his time.
He especially hated the movies of his childhood.
When Tarzan jumped into a pond to shampoo his hair,
All the crocodiles hurried into the water to attack and eat him.
The movie producer lacked the knowledge that crocodiles
Are Taoists, and live primarily by non-action, not speeding to devour
When an Ape-reared human jumped into a pond.
Then the commercial –minded Hitchcock who had a deep understanding
Of how make a profit from the slave-mentality’s purchase of movie tickets
Endowed innocent sea gulls with the minds and habits of the Marquis DeSade.
Then there was a movie about an ancient man who was named “Jesus.”
This movie was an orgy of sadism, beating after beating,
Accompanied by music that harmonized with the cruel actions.
The slave mentality audience feel an intense joy
As the blood oozed from each blow of the whiplash.
Being a misanthrope saved him from being one of the cruel
The baker called it “A sugarless wafer”;
His face a momento mori and a memory of Rilke’s Apollo’s torso.
A man with a brown-paper- bagged skin, braided
All this happened in Paris.
Duane Locke, Tampa, Florida
Ann Arbor Review | Home | next previous | Back to Top