Thursday, June 23, 2005

The True Air Speaks in its Own Voice for the First Time.

Back in February, I posted a poetic comparison of Nas to Shakespeare, explaining them both in terms of classical meter and rhyme. Some of you might know of a longer piece I wrote originally several years ago called "Stitches." Currently, it stands at approximately 1800 lines. That might sound like a lot, but it's actually quite a lightweight as epics go; Stitches was intended to tell a smaller epic story that keeps a good clip and can be read in one sitting, or read aloud as one piece. From the start, I planned absolutely no epic catalogue. It doesn't matter to me how many ships Thebes sent against the Trojans.

Recently, I decided to vary from its usual technicalities: iambic trimeter in four-line stanzas. I wanted a particular part of Stitches written in a totally different voice for a character named "the aether" that sounds like a trite nursery rhyme with a sinister twist. I wanted an irregular meter across the stanza. The repetition of words that rhyme is intentional, to make it sound sing-songy like an annoying child who is always right, and insists to always rhyme. Perhaps success met me, and perhaps it didn't. Please share your thoughts.

i smell a foreign essence
i've never smelled before
pervading all in sight
replacing the horizon

the sky becomes a cloud
descending down on me
and speaking with a voice
that only i can hear

it says it is the aether:
a voice that's in my ear
spoke loudly in my veins
as marrow in my bones

“the aether lets you see her
and now is your deceiver
take it back
turn it black
the tower won'’t believe her

each moment saved to hear us
is wasted like this chorus
run away
through the day
your efforts often bore us"

the choir slowly chants it,
this song made from my dreams:
red hair, blue eyes, white skin
as music in my seams.

the voices bid me run
but i will dance instead
their chorus tells me stories
of all the lives i've lead

"you shouldn'’t fear the magic
it'’s what can make you tragic
four are dead
in your head
they make a dusty attic

the first death makes us willing
at speeds enough for killing
drive a truck
with no luck
the fate with shears was filling

water seeping medic's eyes
with effort to forget the cries
all crushed flat
bar whereat
the body meets the thighs"

and then the room is shifting
i’m in a different place
where all the lights are faded
and sweat is on my face

i'm looking at the floor
to see an empty jar
my eyes won’t read the label
the pills have gone too far

"with all the pills behind us
without a means to bind us
smiles, they swell
you can tell
their part will never find us

the room is left in shadow
the bathtub is too shallow
for the pain
and the reign
of what you chose to swallow

no burden helps return you
the life you had, still spurns you
pills in haste
have no taste
it weeps four days then burns you."

i slow to make a turn
the impact's from the back
i'm looking at a tow truck
then everything goes black

the EMTs revive me
and lose me just as fast
inside this ambulance
my time has gone and passed

“each wailing siren seems sad
as mourning mothers grow mad
in the night
might makes right
the truck is stronger than Dad

more senseless than the causes
are brief, grief-stricken pauses
this was chance
not a dance
no bandages or gauzes

can stop this random action
of tonnage and of traction
cry for now
you know how
this end is but a fraction"

and then i see a stranger
who mocks me from the mirror
he's sucking on a gun
he swears he's not a killer

each breath he pulls the trigger
but pauses after five
to ask a simple question:
"what odds keep me alive?"

"of all the ways to end this
you chose the quick and soulless
kiss the gun
you'’re the one
so be not death, but genesis"

1 comment:

Mia said...

goodness, you are quite a qualified writer... I had no idea. Enjoyed reading your blog very much. Thank you for sharing it with me...