not quite what we meant by embodiment

The darkness drops again but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?
………from Yeats’ “The Second Coming”

Hung over. Hung over by order of the jury of gin, stout, and cigarettes. Hung over and all. circuits. are. dead. Hung over but the borders are permeable, the guards have lifted the barricade, the Consul has suspended my writer’s block.

Hung and coughing and a baby is screaming as I order breakfast in the restaurant with the plaster casts of Winlaw breasts and suddenly I realize the baby is inside me, IS me, I am a very old, smoking baby.

Hung over and my knees are shot, my wrists ache from THE WORK. My back is a twisted, rusty hinge. The arches in my feet are snapped rubber bands.

Hung and the blonde waitress is making me blush.

Hung over and, yeah, I can tell from the conversation at the next table, the elderly couple, that the old man has some sort of degenerative brain disorder and, like the baby, HE IS ALSO ME. I can also tell they are lovers.

Hung and the blonde keeps showing me her ass, wrapped in stretch denim and, oh lord, I wasn’t built to resist the TEMPTATIONS OF THE FLESH, just ask my miniscule testicles or my, as Ian put it in one of his excellent poems, “constant jacking off”. The blonde has just asked me,”Is it heating up in here?” and so hung over am I that I missed the opportunity to reply, “Are you asking me out?” or, at least, in a creepy voice, “It sure is, sugar pants,” but then again,
no. I am a poor writer of verses and prose—meaning my work is lacking in artful expression, not, as one might divine from such ill-formed word constructions, that I am an impoverished man who types.

I am coughing. The blonde seems to have disappeared. No, wait, she’s returned and the blood is thick in my neck like red house paint, the pressure in my ears is something fierce and she has asked me a question I did not hear, yet I insist it is loaded with innuendo and there’s nothing to be done, she is waiting for a response, so I nod maniacally–it was probably about the weather– and give a frantic thumbs up and before I can understand what is happening another large orange juice arrives at my elbow. In this way I come to realize how SEX IS TIED TO CAPITALISM—no, wait, maybe tied to ANY organizing ideology, such as Catholicim (the naked, masochistic Jesus), Communism (the stocky, sexy proletariat sweating away in their libidinous factories) or whatever-ism, an as yet unimagined control mechanism which will, undoubtedly, BE TIED TO SEX.

Hung over and in my middling age these erections don’t last long. I soon forget what all the fuss was about and tie into the hash browns. Soon, they will gather their cholesterol armies for one final assault on my brittle aortae.

Hung over and the triple Eggs Benedict isn’t helping, nor the mercilessly feverish Mexican accordion music coming out over the tinny speakers, nor the now-completely vanished blonde. It has all had the effect of turning my low-blood-sugar, lighter-than-air, ephemeral dream-scape hang-over into a decidedly-not-mystical, deadening SQUIDGE, mired, chained like a channel marker to a morbidly obese chunk of concrete in the distant inky depths below.

Hung over and so must pay up, trudge to the too-small car, slide down the back road, past the grazing white tails, along the lane, to bed, to bed. To sleep, if not to dream.


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