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Wednesday, July 15, 2020

two poems: mallarme and chamisso

Two poems
From Mallarme
Male anxiety
I can’t seem this evening to conquer
your body, beast, in whom the sins of a people
stir, nor pit a sad storm in your dirty hair
under the incurable boredom of my poured out kisses.
From your bed I want that heavy, dreamless sleep
floating on sheets that have never known remorse
such as you might have tasted after your black lies
- you who know more of nothingness than the dead.
For vice, gnawing my native nobility
has marked me, like you, with its sterility;
while as long as there lives in your stony breast
a heart that the tooth of crime cannot tear,
I flee, pale, defeated, haunted by my winding sheet
afraid of dying when, alone, I sleep.
Crematoria
Dad said the crematoria
were expensive to build and upkeep
- they spend money on natural gas
like it is going out of style.
Two million BTUs -
the cast alloy metal ovens
the fire bricks,
this is the down side.
I said she started out in pets?
Absolutely.
People have to dispose of their pets
Darling.
I said upside?
Dad said they always say
Invest in the future.
And what’s more future than death?
I thought of chorines stretching back
From Nefertiti to Donna Summer
Toi qui sur le néant en sais plus que les morts
I said Dad I’m pretty sure
sure and sure
this is gonna bite you in the ass.
He said, the chorines said, the streets say
they have to go somewhere.
We have to go somewhere
when we have nowhere to go.
- Karen Chamisso
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