Thursday, December 17, 2009

rorschach plaat # 10 (11)

rorschach plaat # 10

Is that a heavy crown adorning yr squarish head,
inscrutable rorschach figure? Is that a shocking
pink feathered boa draping yr shoulders & dragging
on the ground in sharp contrast to yr bowed & spindly
legs? Is that a bra on yr chest worn outside of yr
tunic or just oversized blue sunglasses hanging
low from yr neck? what am i to make of u, looking
like one of those cannibals who greedily devour
missionaries when left alone with one in a boat
or on the shore? i am afraid to say. afraid the
shrink might be unable to differientiate my
psychotic from non-psychotic thinking & expose
my underlying thought disorder for what it is!

©Joseph McNair;2009

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

gilded seahorses escape the carousel (10)

gilded seahorses escape the carousel

“I had only one answer to give: 'You're free, choose..."
Jean Paul Sartre

gilded, glitzy sea horses, man-wrought hippocampi,
escape the carousel wondering if anyone
can flee anywhere from themselves. mounted for seeming
millennia on prim posts, they grew disenchanted
with simulated galloping, the bevel gears &
offset cranks, the looped circus music & going round
& round, up & down on suspended circular floors.
they longed for general righteousness & happiness
in an indefinite future. if true freedom is
given, & the self is the goal, can even gilded
sea horses have invisible interior lives?
can they find themselves anywhere save within themselves?
is such their own quaint crisis of subjectivity?

©Joseph McNair;2009

the jeweled frog (9)

the jeweled frog

A frog in love would not be enchanted to learn
that her beloved had turned into Prince Charming.
mason cooley

from quaint & sundry lore the legends of the jeweled
frog derive. in ancient kemet rising like smoke from
the order anura’s womb, a million strong after
each annual flooding of the nile, lustrous, clinquant
frog-faced heqet, the goddess who breathes life’s breath into
bodies shaped on khnum’s potters wheel. or in new role-
play gaming where fat, warty gnarco toads entreat a
halfling goddess for beauty. a boon she readily
grants, painting them brilliantly irridescent for their predators
to easily see, then poisoning their skin, their warts
oozing venom though glittering like gems. how sad that
social science demotes this wondrous spirit totem
to a trifling symbol of a virgin’s sexual fear.

©Joseph McNair

Sunday, December 13, 2009

the jawbone (8)

the jawbone

with the jawbone of an ass ...
i have slain a thousand men.
judges 15:16

angelic visitations are always awkward. &
when the husband isn’t home, who can really fault the
man for needing to be sure his barren wife was not
delusional; that an angel did surely come &
pronounce her pregnant. the cautious, pious man did pray
the angel’s quick return to hear himself the news that his
wife would bear a doughty child who’d set his people free.
the angel obliged. a child was born, a prodigy
bound by oath to never taste strong drink or cut his hair.
with the jawbone of an ass did he smite his foes.
but that mandible proved no match for heifers plowed by
other men or womanly wiles, or the whims of an
almighty, unpredictable & capricious god.

© Joseph McNair;2009

the womb (7)

the womb

the vagina is to humanity what a flower is to nature
michael newberry

rorschach’s inkblot number 6 like the georgia okeefe
canvas, “grey line with black, blue & yellow”, beckons to
the very core of cognition. do i behold in
that smeared image wrought from hemorrhaging ink a jade gate
or whispering eye? or merely accommodate some
deep freudian wish imposing on that static but
protean blot. in that painting do i really see a delicate
flower ethereally erotic & pretty,
or a lotus-like, open & flushed vulva. i ask
myself which is analogue; which, pray tell, is target?
womb or flower? flower or womb? which the more complex?
which the more familiar? what proportionality
is at work here? what aristotelian fancy?

©Joseph McNair;2009

Saturday, December 12, 2009

biker, hellrider (6)

biker, hellrider

biker, hell rider, in a sequential disclosure
of evil, the worst. more than the grim white horse rider,
with neither bow nor crown, a mischief/mayhem maker.
more than the red horse rider, that fearsome taker
of the peace, or the black horse rider, brandishing scales,
claiming a pretty penny’s weight of wheat & barley;
bringing scarcity to a universe of plenty.
even more than the pale horse rider, whose name is death.
this biker, who is anomie, threatens the very
gateway to the incommensurate & eternal
with moral deregulation & the absence of
spiritual aspiration— a real ghost rider— who
ever haunts the bleak highways of self-revelation.

©Joseph McNair;2009

Friday, December 11, 2009

two gnomes dance the celebratory hopaky (5)

two gnomes dance the celebratory hopaky

two gnomes dance the celebratory hopaky,
so youthful, so boisterous & so mercenary;
taking pride in manliness, in acrobatic jumps,
their feet propound a pure cossack narrativity.
but they are gnarly gnomes, with their own structures &
codes. & they should be gnoming rather than cossacking,
practicing oppositional politics or the
poetry of non accommodation, becoming
more structuralist in their outlook. for gnoming is
political in the same way african farmers
hid behind trees & picked off colonial soldiers
who stood perfect targets in fields & in formation.
gnomes playing cossacks? a postmodern travesty!

©Joseph McNair;2009

Thursday, December 10, 2009

a butterfly abreast two slender maids a-touching (4)

a butterfly abreast two slender maids a-touching

the butterfly counts not months but moments,
and has time enough.
rabindranath tagore

a butterfly abreast two slender maids a-touching
unfurls ecstatically in rapturous glory,
repudiating inevitable self-decline
& eminent homogeneity to steal a
frozen moment. its delicately diaphanous
wingspan tumescent with hemolymph mimics comely,
fragilely sirenic blooms to lure a fecund touch,
or warn away predation with the promise of
a bitter taste, an odor foul or potent poison.
the brief eternity of its life, an irony,
an unintended connection to fighting one’s way
out of old forms so deftly, exquisitely symboled by
a butterfly abreast two slender maids a-touching.

©Joseph McNair;2009

bat (3)


the sun was set; the night came on apace,
and falling dews bewet around the place;
the bat takes airy rounds on leathern wings...
john gay

a freakish guardian of the night, frenzy feeding
on small flying vanities & inanities,
catching them on the wing after hearing echoes
bouncing off significant surfaces & others;
crunching carapace & exoskeleton alike
to get at the sweetmeats – the meaning in a world
where the articulation of lust is blindsided
by official mood swings that unbalance consciousness.
u are strong, able to regenerate, replenish
yr life force; able to discern yr bounty, alter
eccentric movement in spite of yr proclivity
to get scrambled, confused & fly blithely into things
like a devil bird caught up in happenstance's float.

© Joseph McNair;2009

coyote (2)


for charles bernstein

coyote, a wily wanderer & sinister
survivor embodies the condensing of travel
without destination stuck with the necessity
of staying alive, one of bernstein’s abridgements
of imperatives. o the gratuitous glutton,
o thrice lascivious lecher, peeping at windows
framing pulchritudinous banquets of innocence.
trickster, pragmatist, outlaw, clown & persistent cheat,
u never give up -- always there to soothly sully
serendipity; taking nothing seriously,
loitering around humanity’s tonal edge.
a defining contrast to sans-psychic road-running
mis-seaming the mishaps of personal heroics.

©Joseph McNair;2009

Monday, December 7, 2009

i met destiny on an ironic path (1)

i met destiny on an ironic path

for master dae kwang

i met destiny on an
ironic path, the one i
took to avoid it; i neither
side-stepped nor turned
back, but fixed upon my
fate a baleful glare –
one that surely would
have killed the buddha,
my tragic mother, or
any patriarch, my father
notwithstanding. one
that surely would have
repudiated tradition;
spurned those seduced
by facile opinion.
i looked, then moved,
through my destiny,
following those faint
but indelible footsteps
leading to my self.

©Joseph McNair; 2009