Charles Plymell at St. Mark's on the Bowerie

photo: © Phil Scalia — May 3, 2006

Before I came here my dog Bebop and I sat before two trees standing like old friends at the Committee on Poetry farmhouse in Cherry Valley — their spirits pray though centuries of abandonment like we orphans of the planet are seen doing at our sinking culture of the of
the toxic ghosts winds the virus rides looking for a host. ___ Charles Plymell


I put on the past flash back shoes to get here/ I ride again/ a little dated but sedated/ I been here before/ who sat here, who sat there/ when we shared a loft on the Bowery 1970 a.d./ the graffiti bricked up east village surrealist gate at the end of Lexington avenue/ an old movie noir/ kaleidoscopic poster dada vue / cut out a face and put in you/ dyeing it new/ while the night was fluid and swift like a switchblade from love to hate/ stuck in the pockets of a black motorcycle jacket/ speeding, sniffing superstars dancing chemical orbits past Max's Kansas City/ space above so vast you could throw a great knife and never hit a star/ our little nightly embers used to spark from the bum's barrel fires burning on the Bowery/ old block jive of spirit piss and jissum spit/ whereto they all died from the great love that pierces for a moment at any time /from which no human is immune ... like James Carr's Love Attack for those of you who remember the greatest soul singer died in the projects of a creeping malaise, the paralysis of spirit, in the years that Allen and Jack and De Kooning too were arguing over art as self-expression, self-satisfaction or higher communication, humanitarian in nature written in journals about the Beats and the Hippies and everyone must get stoned and did and then what's happening turned into what happened/

I am a generic geriatric punk of old, still digging out of the hole of life/ I need a phrase book in English/ Ah, but never talk about yourself when you are my age even when asked/ but here we are/ we are gathered here tonight/ I've been here for so many memorial memories/ I might as well give my pre-memorial/ everybody been there did that generations generate like the ancient frozen stardust trapped in stone from that hole I climbed into where the comet hit in Arizona and Superman was eating the DNA/ I rode the expressways of hi-jacked oil from the stolen prairies of the west to Manhattan's cloud draped canyons of standing coffins rising.

   Came down through New Jersey where all the names of towns were from the tongues of the Mahican to the Newnanticke Jersey green big green signs on the turnpikes I have driven with Janine and Ray and Andy and all the girls and boys of old Joys on expressways that followed the roads that followed trails of Indians/ I too, have driven on past Manasquan/ pressed the pedal to the metal/ coming in at dawn through Matawan/ got to go past Hopatcong/ If I want to get there go thataway to Piscataway/ To Totowa and Ho Ho Cus/ Is that you a hawkin' in Manahawkin/ talkin' broken in Hoboken/ we go all the way to Wanaque and Succasunna soon as she asks me do you wanna Secaucus all around Moonachie/ and she knew the moon was circumcised tonight above the motel light doing the last neon tango with Marlon Brando/ The days went by like a hurricane's eye/ the half century's broken heart/ all my friends gone past mortem through modernism that began for me in Kansas like in a butterfly's L.E.D/ green lights on the dashboard of a 48 Mercury on a straightway highway/ in a bending moment towards eternity/ the long hidden line of curving space I cling to woke me up tonight at the existential movie one train going one way another the other way/ fateful passing arrows of death's eternal spirals of the nights/ in volts of love at the old memory noir train station / where Trevor Howard kisses Celia Johnson and are pulled apart by love Brief Encounter, 1945/ world-sized magnets always pushing on souls left alone in a forever bending night/ who can live it/ the bums rubbed their hands above the fires in the barrel fires burning on the Bowery/ death is to catch the Westbound as they knew it before Guiliani.

I will have to start here, today, dark fucking amber April.

   My morning shoe string breaks in the cold rain dead souls see a spirit and want some flame like a particle might in a subatomic world of universal parallels meet up with a virtual partner somewhere in the world and scoot off somewhere to and annihilate with each other. In the whole pattern in the line of this world....Move on...move on! First forward in time, then backward in time, then forward again until your hair turns grey, they will blame you, unconsciously, for the leftovers of the great generations, the great highways of tail fins leaving other waste for another war and growing economies that will become burned words and dusty books for the small mind who had their greed justified until the rapture, and now they've pieced together the words of the Gospel of Judas who had to be the fink or the cop suicide of Jesus wouldn't work the whisper in the ear that it was not only for this world which is obviously flawed like dust in the diamonds that came down through the world beyond the world, the vast cosmos that tears from your mind to see that's why the slightly mad laughter from Jesus that puzzled the others: Matthew, Mark, Luke and, John from whom the Armageddon heads god their kingdom to use up and transferred all accounts to the God of Money, the Goddess of sex. The star of power. "Mark, John, where's Dick... your Dick with the shrunken soul, and those without the confidence to sound a note. The disciples were puzzled of the laughter and, the possibility their disciples in 3000 year or so would hear a laughter in heaven when they gather at their Budweiser tailgate parties or boats or snowmobiles, or lawnmowers, or anything the shrunken brains can gain from the fossil past...the carbon dust... the diamonds of the stars. Why was Jesus laughing when whispering to Judas? Because they thought he meant THIS world...this Judaic/ Roman world of religions that grew from the slaughter of the lands/ around 50,000 wars since we began to scroll/ would you suspect by now that it might be a gene/like a single electron veered off in space like orphaned souls of this word traveling backward in time like years before of Descartes threw the dice again into the folding universe's secret notebook of the rose/ Scholasticism the downfall of education then and now/empirical evidence suspect. De cart before de horse.

It's the infinite parallel line passing through the circles like strangers passing familiar geometric points like Bucky's dome little gnomes of the gnomen spiraling up in volume spirits that come around like the good winds and the bad winds spiraling upwards... like the serape blowing over my horse's mane into the wilds of the unknown who want something grander than war to bust out/ to see an intelligent designer who will only permit our science to recreate ourselves / out of the bog and into a virtual glob. Be cool, she said, may the Funky Grace protect you from catastrophes big and small.

© 2006 - Charles Plymell

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