what would freud say?

i woke up with the thought
that the letter ‘o’
is a death mask
and that the pathless one
cannot claim me
without it

so, i lay there and looked
at a spot of light
on the ceiling
then did i turn my head
to the window’s
vacant yawn

gazed i through that dark glass
all silent and grim
lo, i shivered
awaiting a fresh hell
from the pit ‘neath
that dank earth

an answer came to me…
if the pit is ‘o’
gaping for me
and the death mask is ‘o’
then needs must they
add to two

i melded the two ‘o’s
infinity ‘fuck’
i girded it
thrust in the pathless face
my loins to mouth
and its shame

then did i fall asleep
like a baby does
with the feeling
of sweet satisfaction
a slaked ‘amen’
so saintly

by TETIANA ALEKSINA & TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2021

TATI’s & TONY’s DEAD POET TOUR // Some Little Bug by John Leroy Atwell aka Roy Atwell

In these days of indigestion
It is oftentimes a question
As to what to eat and what to leave alone;
For each microbe and bacillus
Has a different way to kill us,
And in time they always claim us for their own.
There are germs of every kind
In any food that you can find
In the market or upon the bill of fare.
Drinking water’s just as risky
As the so-called deadly whiskey,
And it’s often a mistake to breathe the air.

Some little bug is going to find you some day,
Some little bug will creep behind you some day,
Then he’ll send for his bug friends
And all your earthly trouble ends;
Some little bug is going to find you some day.

The inviting green cucumber
Gets most everybody’s number,
While the green corn has a system of its own;
Though a radish seems nutritious
Its behaviour is quite vicious,
And a doctor will be coming to your home.
Eating lobster cooked or plain
Is only flirting with ptomaine,
While an oyster sometimes has a lot to say,
But the clams we cat in chowder
Make the angels chant the louder,
For they know that we’ll be with them right away.

Take a slice of nice fried onion
And you’re fit for Dr. Munyon,
Apple dumplings kill you quicker than a train.
Chew a cheesy midnight “rabbit”
And a grave you’ll soon inhabit
Ah, to eat at all is such a foolish game.
Eating huckleberry pie
Is a pleasing way to die,
While sauerkraut brings on softening of the brain.
When you eat banana fritters
Every undertaker titters,
And the casket makers nearly go insane.

Some little bug is going to find you some day,
Some little bug will creep behind you some day,
With a nervous little quiver
He’ll give cirrhosis of the liver;
Some little bug is going to find you some day.

When cold storage vaults I visit
I can only say what is it
Makes poor mortals fill their systems with such stuff?
Now, for breakfast, prunes are dandy
If a stomach pump is handy
And your doctor can be found quite soon enough.
Eat a plate of fine pigs’ knuckles
And the headstone cutter chuckles,
While the grave digger makes a note upon his cuff.
Eat that lovely red bologna
And you’ll wear a wooden kimona,
As your relatives start scrappin ’bout your stuff.

Some little bug is going to find you some day,
Some little bug will creep behind you some day,
Eating juicy sliced pineapple
Makes the sexton dust the chapel;
Some little bug is going to find you some day.

All those crazy foods they mix
Will float us ‘cross the River Styx,
Or they’ll start us climbing up the milky way.
And the meals we eat in courses
Mean a hearse and two black horses
So before a meal some people always pray.
Luscious grapes breed ‘pendicitis,
And the juice leads to gastritis,
So there’s only death to greet us either way;
And fried liver’s nice, but, mind you,
Friends will soon ride slow behind you
And the papers then will have nice things to say.

Some little bug is going to find you some day,
Some little bug will creep behind you some day
Eat some sauce, they call it chili,
On your breast they’ll place a lily;
Some little bug is going to find you some day.

by JOHN LEROY ATWELL (1878-1962)
Public Domain Poetry

ABSURDIS EXTREME // Case Study #87b [16/09/2071] by B.A. Loney

This is the story of Tati and Tony, two writers who were desperate to write the most perfect poem that would ever be written. It would be so epic and untouchable in its perfection that poetry lovers everywhere would literally disintegrate in paroxysms of orgasmic delight. Well… that was their aim anyway.

‘Verily.’

Tony placed the full stop right after this word, and immediately felt regret. It should have been a comma as there surely would be more literary brilliance to follow. He tore the page out of his notebook, scrunched it up, and threw it in the bin.

‘Verily,’ he wrote on a fresh page.

“Ah, much better!” He smiled to himself. “I have a good feeling about this poem already!”

“Balderdash!” sniffed Tati, snatching the notebook out of Tony’s hands.

She crossed out Tony’s ‘Verily,’ and wrote ‘Verily!’ beneath it, then proudly shoved the notebook back in his face. He had to squint real hard in order to decipher the scribble.

“Look how real poets work, Tony! ‘Verily!'”

Tony cocked his head. “Well, okay…” he said uncertainly. “But how does the exclamation mark actually improve this? It makes about as much sense as if you’d put a starfish after it.”

“I put a starfish before it! Don’t you see?”

Tony examined the page again with a critical eye. “Oh! This is a starfish? I thought it was your attempt at a finger painting.”

Tati gasped in outrage.

“Nevertheless,” pressed Tony, “this doesn’t explain the exclamation mark after the word. Am I to understand that it’s a starfish saying ‘Verily!’ in a rather exclamatory manner? If so, what is the starfish so excited about? And does there need to be a starfish at all? I thought we were writing a serious poem.”

“Shut up, Tony! Your blabbing will only frighten away my Muse!” Tati wrinkled her nose at his impertinence, and even puffed her cheeks for emphasis. Still, he was confused by this, and had to wonder at what her scratching her ear was also about. Were there nits in her hair?

Actually, Tati was just a little irritated, and she was thinking hard over the new poem. It wasn’t her problem if people insisted on misinterpreting her body language.

“Oh, I know!”

Tony almost jumped out of his skin with surprise. Tati was so freaking unpredictable.

“I’m a genius!” She jotted something else down, then waved the notebook at him. “Look…”

‘Verily…’

Tony’s eyes widened with wonder.

“Oh my sainted stars!” he said in a hushed—almost reverential—tone. “The dots add a certain gravitas, don’t they? Like… absolutely anything could happen next.”

Suddenly, a human-sized bottle of Corona Extra crashed through their front door and wilfully—and with malicious intent—decanted itself all over them. However, Tati and Tony did not panic, for although they were sopping, stinking wet, they were also wearing masks and so the deadly liquid could not enter their airways.

“Oh, fuck you!” roared Corona. “You sheeple think you’re so clever because you’ve got a silly piece of fabric on your faces! Fuck you so much!”

Feeling rather frustrated and impotent, it turned and stomped out the way it had come in. Corona had legs, but no arms with which to gleefully rip off masks. It was all Corona could do not to have an embarrassing little cry on its way out.

Tati and Tony exchanged looks.

‘A dot?’

‘A dot!’

by TETIANA ALEKSINA & TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2021

summer’s last day

his ears shone redly in the setting of the sun
his puff of hair an orange, a halo of light
and the earthworms drowsed in a rusty can
at his feet, toes splayed and warmly pink

if only there’d been another minute
one more hour to append the day
a breath stolen beneath the moon

grasshoppers made their ruckus in the tall grass
stroking limbs to their wings like tiny violins
water shimmered with the scales of spotted bass
the line’s arc and plish was his blithesome song

if only there’d been another minute
one more hour to append the day
a breath stolen beneath the moon

and so everything breathed, full of bliss and love
in this treasured moment, my memory of him
we stared into the carefree summer clouds above
before they trammeled the horizon into sepulchral night

if only there’d been another minute
one more hour to append the day
a breath stolen beneath the moon

for our shine to outlast a little while

by TETIANA ALEKSINA & TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2021