BUT IS IT POETRY? // how to explain life to a live girl

they walk around the room cuddling a dead hare
smearing the floor with stale syrupy gold
they cry out loud that awakening is here
exactly as beuys has foretold

i lie on the floor trying not to sleep
but the damned gold flashes before my eyes
here i balance over the greasy steep
falling through the creaky rickety skies

and i see in my dream how a huge dead hare
cuddles me to its soft warm belly
runs its paws over my messy hair
treats me to marmite and orange jelly

the hare whispers of shoes and sealing wax
of shooting stars over the seashore
that a worldview’s a matter of parallax
…i wake up to the sound of a slammed door

1265542358_ornament

TONY: You have the most fascinating brain I’ve ever had the privilege to encounter.

TATI: Nice start, Tony. Go on.

TONY: Erm…

TATI: How’s your head, by the way? It wasn’t a concussion, I hope?

TONY: The doctor said you hadn’t hit me that hard after all, and that I should stop being a whimpersome girly-boy.

TATI: Good boy. All you need to do is wise up and don’t repeat that painful experience from our previous discussion. There is a reason we discarded it, after all.

TONY: So now we’re having an entirely new discussion for the purposes of this post. Oh yeah, I totally get it now.

TATI: Let’s go then.

TONY: Erm. Well. I wanted to discuss a particular poem with you.

TATI: What poem?

TONY: It’s called ‘how to explain life to a live girl’.

TATI: I remember this one. Do you hesitate to call it ‘poetry’?

TONY: Oh, no, I definitely think it’s poetry. It’s just that… well, a dead hare?

TATI: Yes, hares die sometimes. Sad, but true.

TONY: Well, sure, but what is the poem about? It seems to be about a dead hare, some strange yellow substance that could be honey or gold paint, and some dude called Beuys.

TATI: Do you know who this is, Tony?

TONY: Is it a ‘Harry Potter’ character?

TATI: Are you serious?!

TONY: No? From ‘Hunger Games’ then.

TATI: I don’t think the poet should have to explain to the reader each and every reference.

TONY: ’50 Shades of Grey’?

TATI: Yuck! If you, the reader, really cared then you could have dived into the poem to understand what the author wanted to say here or there. You could have educated yourself.

TONY: There are too many books in those series. You expect me to read all of them?

TATI: If you don’t understand something, you need to google it or at the very least try to think of your own interpretation. Don’t you have an imagination?

TONY: Maybe It’s a recipe for honey-roasted bunnies. Maybe that’s what you wrote.

TATI: That is one interpretation, I suppose. It isn’t necessary for it to be the same as what the author implied.

TONY: So, I’m wrong?

TATI: Don’t you know anything about the magic of poetry?! You are not meant to make a school book report from it, and you don’t ask the author to explain each and every detail to you!

TONY: Why not?

TATI: If James Joyce had tried to explain ‘Ulysses’ to each and every idiot, would the novel have been listed in the Bokklubben World Library amongst its one hundred best books ever? I bet no. They would have dismissed him as another graphomaniac who wastes valuable paper instead of increasing the GDP of Ireland!

TONY: But nobody understands that book! Are you saying that in order to write greatness that whatever one writes must be completely incomprehensible? I expect you’ll be awarded the Booker Prize any day then!

TATI: Seriously, Tony, I am not going to sit here and explain to you who Beuys is. Nor will I explain about his performance ‘How to Explain Pictures to a Dead Hare’ and other shit. And you should be saying thank you to me because I am doing you a huge favour! I’m giving you a chance to grow and educate yourself!

TONY: True. Sounds like it was boring and pretentious.

TATI: Cool. Then I propose to go back to what we were doing before you started this discussion. You can nap and play video games, and I will sit here and continue to read this idiotic book.

TONY: ‘Ulysses’?!

 

by TETIANA ALEKSINA & TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2020

how to explain life to a live girl

they walk around the room cuddling a dead hare
smearing the floor with stale syrupy gold
they cry out loud that awakening is here
exactly as beuys has foretold

i lie on the floor trying not to sleep
but the damned gold flashes before my eyes
here i balance over the greasy steep
falling through the creaky rickety skies

and i see in my dream how a huge dead hare
cuddles me to its soft warm belly
runs its paws over my messy hair
treats me to marmite and orange jelly

the hare whispers of shoes and sealing wax
of shooting stars over the seashore
that a worldview’s a matter of parallax
…i wake up to the sound of a slammed door

 

by TETIANA ALEKSINA
© All rights reserved 2019