Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Lingering (Poetry) by John C. Goodman

by John C. Goodman

“I am about to remember
the causes of the First World War;
it was all those Dadaesque
apothecaries that made it go
so dreadfully wrong.”

did-ringle ded-rongle doo-rangle

so, there was this guy, see, you aren’t going to believe this, so, like, he goes, wait till I tell ya, so I sez, yeah, and he like goes, huh? an’ like then, ya know, he like, it was like, so what? an’ it was crazy cuz he already knew, right?, an’ he’s like there, and I’m like, what?, so, you won’t believe this, so

made it go so wrong

Where there was nothing
is now a void

went so wretchedly wrong

The wind scratches under the shingles –
the clapboard shudders

the snowcovered stones
know more than we
waiting patiently
to erode

if we reach down into our souls
as into childhood pockets
for pieces of string and
forgotten treasures

our memories are coins between
the sofa cushions

so wrong

“…((if life were a
tale told by an
idiot full of
sound and
fury signifying
at least that would be something)))…”

we are ghosts lingering in hallways
forgotten even unto ourselves
the reasons for our reasons can no longer be sustained

the remnants of wars and conflicts
the battle scars of time

smudged against the background
until we disappear

taxis lexis
the rules of reality

attitudes crumble
the sky was once as big as lavender

the mirror is reflecting where you are
where you have been and where you will be

“this covers her, this crosses her, this is above her, this is below her;
this is her house, this is her self, this is her past and this is what will come.”

“so he says, like, wassup? and he’s just like jerkin’ me around so I says, you got pennies on your eyes, the obolos to pay the ferryman, and another coin in your mouth, a danake for a silver tongue to charm the gods, and he says, yeah, I’ll leave pennies on your grave…”

([([([it went so wrong])])])])

[[[Styx was the daughter of Okeanos and Tethys. Wedded to the Titan Pallas, Styx was the mother of Bia (Strength), Kratos (Power), Nike (Victory) and Zelus (Zeal)]]]

No coins to pay the boatman
so leave me on the shore
neither dead nor human
for a hundred years or more
doo-langle diddy-doo-woo

Gtr I (D A D F# A D) - Elmore James - Lead w/slide overdrive
Gtr II (E A D G B E) - Eddie Taylor - Rhythm - electric acoustic
Gtr III (D A D F# A D) - James Williamson Bass line - dirty acoustic

(((her name literally means “hated”))))))

it’s all in the mirror,
the causes and results,
the future as wide as the river’s mouth,
and death as far as the shore

Author bio:

John C. Goodman lived in British Columbia and Ontario before settling in Newfoundland & Labrador. He has published a novel, Talking to Wendigo (Turnstone Press). His stories, poems and essays have appeared in The Fiddlehead; Otoliths; elimae; pax americana; Counterexample Poetics and other magazines in Canada and the US. He is the editor of ditch, (, an online poetry magazine and editor of Trainwreck Press.

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