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ON MY MORTALITY
Daumier's Laveuse au Quai d'Anjou
I spill upon the draft,

"On which side are you?"

upon a world where all the people are
Frankensteins creating monsters all the time
& nobody gives't a second thought

--You who could've done anything
about it, but you don't really give a

Face becomes earth, sinks
to the distance green with th'odors
of the musty Darkness

the river blinks its body
through th'dangling moss of sequence's

swirling refusals
blocking all by the bucketfuls

lapping the faint taste, Space
itself is expanding! But

man does not yield
to the authority of truth--only to
the truth of authority:

there are no evil people--Except, of course,
if you find good people who think there are
evil people (then, most probably, those
are the evil people)

       ... men yield
truth to the majority, or

fragmented Autumn gone into the shape
of flesh drinking from Spring's

twisted bones: the forest is
discovered to be but Fancy's flourish
upon an empty glass
(half of which holds those who want to win
& the other half holds those who want
to win by th'rules) clamoring

& clamoring: On which side?
On which side are you?

amidst th'incomprehensible remains:

"Do: This Great Thing!
... What are you saving yourself for?"

one more of our Times' peculiar
trophies: "The World does not need you

--But it needs THIS: Do this

& die! "

... Corpse of a pigeon

which, living, tried to fly
over Candor's difficult cliffs

(going at it with Chance's uncertain wings
instead of Change's sure hammers)
perfectly upon the gutter

moves a matron to pull it aside
--It's not her job, you understand--& yet
she, tenderly, picks it up
& places it upon the trashpile:

Where else!?! (aside:

but with a sanitized
piece of old newspaper
in order to avoid at all cost
The Touch)
     

      Death

beats its wings & chopped his head off
while trying to cut the muster,

for The Path to Perfection is
barred by O
Impatience! my man, Death beats
its wings,
    

      Why do I
get th'feeling your brains were run over
by a truck! ... O Man
(the midget murdered by a short circuit):

Death beats its wings, y en esta tumba
yace Rodrigue --Y mas alante
el que le sigue:

La Muerte beats its wings
--Why do you stand for it? Hemorrhoids, sir,

hemorrhoids (please tell me,
answer me this eternal question:

Was Man born to break th'rules
others have made? Or, was Man
born to make up rules for others to break?)
106

  ... Death beats
its wings, both (can you

understand it?): "On which side?
On which side are you?"

But I will not say anything
until I have an inkling
of what you intend to do with my answers,

when Death beats its wings
against the resilient obsolete

and World sinks,

World sinks,            

        World sinks,

World              

    settles back,   

                  settles
back,                  
     settles back

further &            

further      

       & further,

& then further than

an opened door recognizes,

than        

an opened door recognizes,

than an opened door

      recognizes

a muscle has   

flexed!    
David's Marat Assassinated

^{106} I do not believe man can build a prison from which man cannot eventually escape. Nor can anyone think up a puzzle someone else won't eventually solve. But all men are Man, and just as no one man has more than his two arms with which to build something... no other man has more than his own two arms with which to tear it [email protected]

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