Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Next to Nothing

“Scene VI (1940)

It is our fault we love only the skull of Beauty
Without knowing who she was, of what she died.
We have the thief's guilt, but not his booty,
The liar's spasm without ever having lied.
The sick locust scrapes his injured song,
His thorax only partially destroyed.
Retching is prohibited. It's wrong.
The murderer feels no hate he can avoid.

Now flies bite worst where the skin is broken.
Illness triumphs. Lesions. Soon tumors sprout.
The bloated plants quiver, the seeds will be shaken.
'Your head's bashed in, darling. Look out.”

“Each Whining Thing (1929)

When stripèd snakes shall creep upon us
And the nervous screams of birds
Make silent all the fountains and the orchards and when these
Have caught upon the wing each wing
That flutters from the sky
Then shall I and then shall I


Rip out the smiles from garden walks
Transform the minnows into hawks
Tarantulas and bees
Then shall I and then shall I

Unmake each whining thing.”

Paul Bowles

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