I Lost My Beatnik Antlers On the Grassy Knoll . . . Help Me, JFK
I lost my khakis and my hair smoosh
and my craft beer/Telly Savalas shrine.
I lost my “History of Maple Urine Disease” on the grassy knoll,
and my trainable kielbasa.
I lost my eatable narc pants.
I was told I had lost my reason.
I lost my A-Rod beanstalk mojo on the grassy knoll
but I found my Christmas spliff.
Scully, Mulder, I will be a doctor,
but I need my “Ryan Seacrest is a Kitty” blanket first.
Cuba has Santeria, Haiti has Voodoo, and I have my
“Abraham Lincoln’s Birthday Does Irish Cheerleaders At Madison Square Garden” pass
… oops: had.
Jean Valjean’s balls are on the rebound from Napoleon,
but don’t look for them on the grassy knoll.
Also lost are Broadway memories of Sylvia Plath
and Rachael Ray’s “My Little e-Pony” giveaway.
I hear Maytag refrigerators are polling the Elephant Man’s spider bite
about Tom of Finland’s minimum wage petition.
Apparently it’s also gone missing on the grassy knoll.
Now I don’t feel so alone.
Russell Crowe’s Peanut Corporation is also lost,
as well as Canadian television’s “Why Do I Have Green Poop?” NASCAR series.
Too bad about Neil Patrick Harris’s spanglish movie “Wampum the Sky Warrior”
(and “Wampum Reloaded: Zombie Apocalypse Credit Union”).
Whatever happened to Marie Osmond’s Deluxe Dead Baby Pills Patch™?
And “Freakout On Lesbian Mountain” starring groundhog puppets and sponsored by Abilify?
And where are Hosni Mubarak’s pics of America’s most voluptuous MILF members
of the Loyal Order of Benevolent Toilet Dogs?
… I think we know the answer.
My live sponge birth control pay-per-view?
My Prednisone-induced diarrhea tracking number?
My cat’s resignation letter to Maya Angelou’s Power Ranger’s “Diaperlover Stories Night”?
Help me, JFK.
I Called My Flood “Lloyd”
I called my flood “Lloyd.”
I called my flood “Lloyd” because my grandfather called his flood “Lloyd,” though he could’ve called it “Aloof Cad” or “Moldy Dodo“ just as well.
We were barbarians of uncertain origin, and so I called my flood “Lloyd” because my ancestors, possessors of our tribe’s precious quest object, had walked across cold moonlit ice hundreds of years ago so that, hundreds of years later, a weak white sun might stream freely through trees across the land bridge called “Breath-Thread.”
My grandmother called her flood “Lloyd” (though she could’ve called it “Odd Mayfly” just as well) because the dark-haired ladies of Roman society had worn fancy blond wigs made of our ancestor’s tresses and imitated their crude love of strong odor, especially on holidays.
I called my flood “Lloyd” because I had been chosen to save those who drown in floods in their dreams as I myself had been saved: awoken from sleep in a meadow, hand-in-hand with a boy, both of us laughing past sunlight and jumping down into a hole, and the hole, meadow and boy were all called “Lloyd.”
I called my flood “Lloyd” because the word refers to the brown waters of influxion, and to old-fashioned wrapping paper, and when used of younger men suggests mouse-colored hair, though it could also refer to the grey hair of saints, as it was occasionally found in descriptions of hermits attached to the word “holy.”
As a child I was told, and so I believed, that the troubled soul could remake the whole of heaven into a mysterious light that would allow a fleeting glimpse of St. Christmas the Swimmer, if that heaven and one’s name were the same, and so I called my heaven “Lloyd.”
Back then everything seemed to be happening as in the days of blue dealing, and often I found myself in a boarding house under a sundial on the rue du Cherche-Midi, and the composer who lived there asked me if I were the little girl in the painting above the fireplace, the painting called “She Calls Her Flood ’Lloyd.’”
And I told him yes, with the voice of my Calling, my Calling that I also called “Lloyd.”
It was wartime, always a bloody and dirty Sunday morning, but Paris (which I secretly called “Lloyd”) shone immaculate, and people swept the sidewalks, even the streets, and it was a privilege, an ancient appointed privilege, to stroll in the cold muddy dusk beyond town, just beyond town, my eyes moving left and then right, and then again right and left in perfect equilibrium with the straits between the billboards and the lakes, the lakes from which flowed the flood called “Lloyd.”
I called my flood “Lloyd” because the taste of the sky was so fresh and good, even during wartime, and the promised ways remained at the ends of all things which held together through the straits between the billboards and the lakes, the lakes from which flowed the flood called “Lloyd.”
The flood called “Lloyd” was originally a wandering eucharist, seeking a swollen host yet yielding little fixity, and so after the testing unto death it allowed me to carry it on my back like an eremite’s nightmare, positioned between the unborn and the living, between the depths and the surface, where it yielded little fixity though it did hold the high watch through the straits between the billboards and the lakes.
I carried my flood through the black brightness of day until, in the wake of a pleasant spring spent sleeping, against the ruddy glow of bricks behind bicycles with box baskets, I found myself in deep pursuit by the listening samovars, and I understood how my ancestors had almost been erased from the face of the earth, and how some boundaries can only be honored when breeched.
And then a new world arose from inside my chest, a world where arrows fell away, lapping up sleep, and I sunk into a silence ever more profound, and the waves all around me gave birth to new, foreign floods, which buttressed my soul against the precious quest object.
I watched as a canned incandescence streamed in from the kitchen, pooling in the skin under my oxygen, and my rapids became inroads, my radio an aorta, and finally my dominating sorrow became a dais of raindrops.
And there an endless loam stretched. My barbaric flood-feet became Earth-feet, barely able to keep time.
This is the condition of unwished-for simplicity. What I don’t know is the thing I know — anodyne decide — and where I am is where I’ve never been.
Half-heard is unheard. And who now even knows why those old stones were first set against the sky?
Excerpts from The Prose Poem, An International Anthology, edited by Michael Benedikt, Dell Books, 1976: Max Jacob, translator Michael Benedikt
Atilla Joszef and Gyula Illyes, translator John Bakti
Mutsuo Takahashi, translator Hiroaki Sato
The Smile On My Face Makes the Dead Baby Pills Worth It
What I love most about being a female
are those pills made from dead babies that stop puberty.
We’re the only mammals who don’t ingest our own placentas,
so when I’m in France I go straight to Bon Marche
and buy me a pill pie made of extruded Care Bear + buxom lady pirate placenta.
That way I can look 100% Hollywood dead and still smell nice —
like sweaty Marxists mixing it up with Scottish bartenders
over black Catholics using Chinese condoms in Latin America
(i.e., like testes in the lunchroom).
Benzos + weed + kiddie speedballs + heroin + a rag soaked in scholastic turmeric +
thirty dead baby pills washed down with Polish Vodka (from Slovenia)
produces the same result as 40,000 MDMA pills ingested in Amsterdam
if you’re British: you smell like your greatest fear —
Taylor Swift in tiny Harry Potter hot pants
covered in rainbow dead baby patches.
Plus — bonus! — your voice sounds like Exorcist Chewbacca.
A pill made of ten pounds of Exorcist Chewbecca belly hair
as a substitute for teaching brightens my heart more than “The Walking Dead”
summed up in 31 blow jobs.
In 1951, when I was 14, we were into gang fighting, wine and beer in the park,
and punching the shit out of people.
That’s because dead baby pills hadn’t been invented yet.
Still, we were glad we were not the result of 45 Golem Easter bunnies
mated with Bigfoot,
like those poor Kardashians.
Is everyone that ugly on the planet Kardashia?
Something I always say on the third Wednesday in April
after the first full moon in spring at 4 o'clock when the bells ring:
God bless the universal American custom of arrows shot in rapid succession
from masses of Easter Bunny butt.
That means the dead baby pill party in my mouth
is just beginning.
My Name In Hebrew
My Hebrew-speaking friends
tell me that my name in Hebrew
means “poet or lyricist.”
Also “poet or lyricist with insomnia,”
sometimes “psalmist with insomnia,”
and at other times “one who feeds her cats insomnia today
and tomorrow pills made from dead babies
One particular Hebrew-speaking friend
(whose own name means “eat Al Gore and you’ll get anorexia”)
tells me that my name in Hebrew might also mean
“your portly psychiatrist is unnerved by your project involving
all the baldness of Hollywood’s insomnia.”
In fact, in a recent episode of
“My Revenant Mama Eats Your Mama’s Insomnia,”
starring three of my Hebrew-speaking friends,
all with Hollywood insomnia,
both the donkey cart and the donkey
are related to the King of Trainee Retinas
and afflicted with insomnia.
And in order to lull him into
Breathing New Life Into The Zombie Apocalypse
they use the Jewish revenge fantasy aspect of
“Inglourious Basterds” — thousands of Tel Aviv children singing
a doo-wop version of “The Binding of Isaac” from Genesis 22,
in which God falls ill in February 1603
and commands Isaac’s father in Pig Latin to
“ab-stay your un-say and then am-scray.”
But “God’s insomnia” can also be Hebrew code for
“full of rage in one of NYU’s mole tunnels
with a goatee full of toxic angora.”
So what am I supposed to believe?
Especially when scientists at Purdue’s Hebrew University in Mahwah, Jerusalem
are breathing new life into the menacing running zombie
that is not merely a revenant but a rageful, rabid
cab-driving mime hobbit with eczema,
drunk on sixteen Insomnia-bin-Ladens
every day before lunch.
I have no choice but believe that,
like the New Zealand volcano in “Lord of the Rings,”
I should be taking the marijuana pills
supplied by my greengrocer
to beat insomnia.
And then maybe my Hebrew name will be
“your orgy gooks are ruining my community musical about
Fall Out Boy’s archival Daewoo with their kebab acne
I Discovered Pain
I discovered pain.
But that was after I discovered
Chuck Norris' real name (Carlos)
and the cramp-giving power of his mullet
when pitted against a bog oak.
I discovered pain,
but that was after I discovered
the secret parody set of Nobel Peace Prizes
disguised as the mountain men who lick hallucinating Irishmen
in an enchanted forest.
I discovered pain when I discovered
Paul McCartney advancing his aims with Mr. Pillow-Smotherer-Dude
in a struggle under a gangway window
as voices rose in protest, and wild horses shambled
in the half-light of a same-same Milky Way.
Three stalwart robins approached,
And that's probably when I discovered
that freemason needle freaks actually discovered pain
in the magnetic flux lines that do not move
despite the Lorentz force acting on them inside a current-carrying
Type II superconductor, rocketing through a wormhole.
And that no one really gives a shit about
nacreous baboon openings,
or mullet challenges to boil colonization
on the edible cockles of a penis.
I discovered pain
in a moment of repose,
in a proud ravaged harbor enclosed
in a bog oak.
My Melancholy Cannibal
" We are all mixed up in the eating of flesh . . ."
— Jacques Derrida, in conversation with Daniel Birnbaum and Anders Olsson on October 25, 1990 and published in e-flux journal #2, 2009
Who gave birth to this disease of nostalgia
called Stroke It To The Food Network?
Who forced us to discuss our raw, rotting flesh and blood
with the gorgeous ladies of Stroke It To The Food Network?
Who forced us to desire that our raw, rotting flesh and blood
be incorporated into the infinite metabolism
that is Stroke It To The Food Network?
Naturally, we recoil from this cool assimilation
as from another old acquaintance,
the Inassimilable Wolf Man.
Who really knows how sublime a symbol
the Inassimilable Wolf Man is?
After all, in the great mystery of Christianity
what is radically alien gets pounded
and then wolfed down
in a series of Inassimilable Wolf Man Seminars.
As is so often the case, it is poets, unemployable and hungry,
who lead us deeper into the labyrinth of hunger,
into the very ends of the Inassimilable Wolf Man —
The Great Digestion.
But before all the teary Food Network nostalgia
constituted a parallel to the Holy Sacrament,
and way before Christ died witnessing the return of
Inassimilable Wolf Man as Melancholy Cannibal Wolf Man,
the Great Digestion provided us with special organs for grasping
a world of meaningful, melancholy eating.
But then we got messed up, all of us at the same time
forcing air through our narrow channels
and placing our two articulators close together
to voice the tyranny of the hunger which, in reality,
is nothing more than a cloud in trousers
in a baby food jar
somewhere in a shopping mall.
Who really knows how melancholy a symbol the bi-labial fricative — which is often a linguolabial trill
[if performed by chimpanzees] —
is in the face of The Great Digestion?
We recoil from this question as from our other
old acquaintance, Melancholy Cannibal Christ,
who forced us to desire that our raw, rotting flesh and blood
be incorporated into the infinite metabolism
of Stroke It To The Food Network,
and who gave preferred glottal place of articulation
to the disease of nostalgia called
Stroke It To The Food Network,
Stroke It To Food Network being only the portal through which the melancholy of eating
into 3-dimensional space.