Description: An anti-pastoral poem. Awaiting the wrath of critics who're certain the author is a demented wordsmith. Bon apetit.
A Long Talk With A Short Man -------------------------------------------
What say ye?
Shall we do belly shots
of tequila from the corpse
of this whore? Shower her
with grand gestures of aged
hipster bliss clinging to promiscuous
deities with hymns for the dead
and an alternate path
to the off-ramp of hope?
Shall the cursed girl be called
poiema? Cantus epistoleria?
Confession, obsession, repression
retention; how shall we come to thee?
In collaborative prose
of an unholy union
slender as an ink-stained
The tip of the trowel lay
denuded of paint
bright as a spearpoint
slicing the earth into
of placental agreement
with growth and decay
like a firm afterbirth.
Just a slob like one of us?
What if God were merciless?
His ledger left us penniless
as the script in which we trust.
Perhaps the penitent man
shall pass, blackmailed by his faith
absolved of the carnivore glance
of strangers seeking some subtle rape.
Ok, hmmm... where to start? I did say I'd come back to this as I was on my way out when I faved this... and yea, it's been ages, but oh well.
This is gonna sound really lame... but I like the way it sounds most of all. It's tight like a nun lol. Ok, that was twisted... my bad.
First off... your title-- it says a lot of things to me. 'A long talk' connotes patience or perhaps the opposite. And putting this with 'a short man' connotes either inferiority or superiority, depending on the viewpoint.
As for your word-choice: you have a lot centred on women in a negative light. Now I'm not saying this is bad, because it's not. It's interesting and lends this whole poem a rather aggressive tone.
Somehow, I don't think you're harping on about sluts and ho's specifically--- maybe as an overall social glimpse of the world. Hmm, perhaps oversaturated sex-sells television ads and the raunchy fashion of nowadays compared to the tameness of yesteryear? I mean, just walk down any city street and some women positively pulse with their views on fashion... some tasteful, some totally deplorable in my opinion. But that's a totally subjective thing.
This is one of those writes that lets the reader come to his/her own conclusions, and I appreciate that. I daresay your intention was/is markedly different from what I'm getting from this... but again, that's not a bad thing. Leaving things open to interpretation lets the reader become the author as such. We all become bystanders once we reveal what we write to others... we take the back-seat, the poem reflects back to the reader what is of importance to him/her etc.
Anyway, I'm harping on about stuff-all. Back to the wordplay: the sonics in this are great to read out. The rhymes, alliteration, assonance... the rhythm and overall cadence to this piece is what caught me over everything else. I know that sounds bad that I faved this merely on the sound alone over the message... but this is something I can read quite happily over again to gain different perspectives from.
This comment is about to die. I should've written this when I first read it. Coming back to something later on sometimes dilutes the response... the way this affected me.
You mean you're not a demented wordsmith? I'm unconvinced.
I think you're right, she's quite probably dead, but we persist in trying to turn her into something else anyway. A functional shot-taking table, by your suggestion. We curse her and celebrate her, but who killed her and why do we insist on resurrection and reinvention? What does she hold for us? The key to salvation?
"of placental agreement with growth and decay like a firm afterbirth."
I'm unconvinced you need to make that last line a simile -- I'd be very tempted to get rid of "like", put in another adjective and have it follow the metaphor that you've already set up with "placental agreement".
I'm of two minds about the intertext toward the end -- on the one hand, the "what if god were one of us" part links well to the holy grail, and the holy grail links back to the idea of resurrection. On the other hand, it walks a fine line between clever and too clever. But then, since I really like the added depth that such intertextuality creates, I'd have to say that it does work for me.
In the end, I say take the shots, rub the lemon and salt into every open wound you have and let the words run free.
i guess me says that this is a very well written piece, with excellent rhythm(sp?) and flow. I liked reading this, the whole experience of reading it, not just the words i was reading.(allthough i enjoyed the words themselves also)
I gotta agree with wewak here dearie, i don't think any criticism could come to this, at least not from me.
What say I? I say your wait for critics will be a long, and rather dull experience, one through which I won't suggest trying to hold your breath. I'm seeing the whore as being Mary, the harlot who hung around with Jesus. This is a wonderful piece, at least so far as I'm concerned, because you seem to be pointing out how much the churches cut down the very people their lord taught them to befriend, and respect, and love as brothers and all that. Yet, what I loved most is that they're wanting to take shots over her body I think that's just wonderful, priests getting smashed while slamming a whore's way of life. Talk about trying to pluck the sawdust from your brother's eye while ignoring the plank in your own.
Anyways, if you really wanted, and you wanted to write something a bit more....influential, I'm pretty sure you could convert half the Roman Catholic Army, I mean, church to your cause, you just have to say that god told you to write it, that's how most other churches were founded, then again, god also gets the blame for wonderful people like Charles Manson and the Son of Sam(though I don't know his real name, or maybe they're the same people, I'm not up to date with my serial killers), and George Bush Jr. If they can convert the masses, I'm sure you could find people to rise up against said baleful critics.
By the way, beautiful wordplay, I especially liked the parody of "Wat if God Were One of Us." Anyhow, it's getting near dawn now, so I'm going to go to sleep. Salaam.
OK Bill, maybe I'm just not getting this poem the way everyone else is. To me it's not really about a woman at all. It's about God. Or people's ideas of what and who God is, anyway. And not the real true God, but the false gods, the gods we worship and later find out they aren't worth a damn. They are really just dead, and powerless, and we learn to hate them because they aren't all they've cracked up to be. I loved that line about the alternate path to the off ramp of hope.
The part about the trowel and the earth brings to my mind Creation, and how it's really so obvious, "bright as a spearpoint" that there really is one Creator who made it all. But then I'm a believer in God and in Jesus Christ, so I've got a definite Christian worldview and perspective.
Even though you misspelled the word deities, I'm putting this one on my favorites. (wink)