The drying knotted boy

It talks slurred to its friend,
its curled twin adrift in the wind
of this desert, this floor and ceiling
made purely of empty canteens
and stones upon which lie
the gasps of spit which men tried
to lick up, with hard licks,
their tongues as black and dry as wick
like the tongue of the expatriate sun
spilling its light through a raygun:
an alien saucer left to linger in
the eyeball of this swinging dead man.
Someone tied the knot, carried it,
dragged it through the miles of pits
and dunes, a snake through the dunes,
shedding its fiber like the skin of this room
so large, this hall of atomic flashes,
filled with a thousand necktie sashes
which flay and bake any who dare
to look in the face of godless law
and spit it in, then their spit bare
hugs their feet as rope hugs them raw.


Rhyme’s a little like a painkiller. You can’t get enough once you do it for a few months. I would like to get into more complex rhymes, but that’s as much intuition as practice, and even I know force in a poem is not the same as control. Anyhow, I’m considering a different title, perhaps two. The dry serpent, but that uses serpent and that’s on my blacklist. Or, The drying snake holds his boy, or, The boy holds his drying snake. I also need to talk more about why I say the noose is drying rather than talking about the boy who is drying, and perhaps some innuendo about his “crime.” A crime. Yes, right. I can tie this into a desert collection, where everyone in it dies for some odd reason or another. The snake metaphor can pass as original sin, but this original sin is a bit different–someone did listen to the snake, but rather than waste time eating from the tree, he ate from the snake.


~ by Jeremy on July 25, 2010.

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