like a leaf
and the leaf
pulled to it
and the earth
and the leaf
met like thunder.
day he spotted the world's navel in a Salvation Army hot-plate
and he looked
and fell in and was gone.
He winked at a Sri Lankan monk studying flesh gone far beyond
and new bodies
arriving daily and was gone.
He called for his check and the Aztec waiter appeared with his
heart on a platter
and he took one look and was gone.
Uneasy in the underworld, he turned and bumped and glanced out
sado-masochism funnies and was gone.
He sought to reopen Zukabee on heavy metal teeshirts and mounted
his show of
tender lost tin cans but was gone.
sought his space in downtown back alleys, and lonely air shafts,
but finding no solace in these spots he soon was gone.
Ub Iwerks was jiving with a bunch of loose-boned cats, and Steve
hooked up with them and danced and they were gone!
And they beat a rhythm like heavy rain on the tin roof of the
skull and they played and they played till they were gone.
And the water ran to ditches with rich and shining filth and
steam rose and smoke
from a myriad fires and it went up and was gone.
Then the chorus of dying gnats rose in a silver cloud, like
dark and shifting oil, a slick upon the mind until that too
earth, it is so comfortable
(this is the gnats' sweet song).
with garbage and with corpses
that show us we belong.
Seaton is founder of Poetry on the Loose. About this text, he
writes, it "was composed for a Poetry on the Loose event
in the Zukabee Gallery in Middletown, New York on October 1,
1994. Steve Clair, the gallery's owner, observed his move from
an old furniture factory to a downtown storefront by staging
his own wake. At the front of the hall stood a genuine coffin
of substantial quality. Steve had prayer cards printed for himself.
His original concept was to consume some drug that would render
him apparently lifeless and to recline in the coffin, but in
the end he sat in the second row while poets declaimed Clair's
own work as well as their own."