THE FINAL PASSION OF ANTONIN ARTAUD
Si l’on pouvait seulement goûter son néant…
If only you could taste your nothingness.
The Nerve Meter
The loose magic of Artaud in his cell:
Emptied by electroshock, never quite cured.
His knowledge straps him to the cold table.
Saint Joan leads him a long way down the hall.
She watches his feet, shifting cables,
sharing him with fire. She smiles as he burns.
Taut fingers casting Tibetan spells.
He prays dirty prayers while green corpses churn
yak butter in sterile rooms. Unstable,
he knows, but doesn’t care. Holy shoes still
pray for him. Angry angels haunt the curves
of his brain. The saint blesses him with bells.
Mark J. Mitchell’s latest novel, The Magic War just appeared from Loose Leaves Publishing. A Full-length collection of poems will released next year by Encircle Publications. He studied writing at UC Santa Cruz under Raymond Carver and George Hitchcock. His work has appeared in the several anthologies and hundreds of periodicals. Three of his chapbooks— Three Visitors, Lent, 1999, and Artifacts and Relics—and the novel, Knight Prisoner are available through Amazon and Barnes and Noble. He lives with his wife the activist and documentarian, Joan Juster and makes a living pointing out pretty things in San Francisco.
A meager online presence can be found at https://www.facebook.com/MarkJMitchellwriter/
Pale lips part, titillating the words,
trumped by those assassin eyes that
form the terms of squelched passions,
pursuit facilitated not by a slick,
scrimshaw knife, but by the hands that
once caressed her body with shameful
He cups her neck, tightening the grip,
forgetting how to forgive the abortion
she’s just had; pain exorcises the demons
of regret, like a song that weeps for the
past, happy it’s remained there. His face is
chiseled ice, the wounds of his soul,
beyond the scope of understanding.
One vacant smile, mute to the invitation
it contains, mute, to his spotlight of misery.
He leaves her once embrace in the raw
mechanics of the act, abstract to the concept
of time. His self-proposal is this: to not waste
any more time, to reestablish the vigor of
his drive within the sanity of proceeding,
to feel, the subliminal and unspoken ease
of pleasant diversion. He writes stories
in a chorus of pleasure and longing. He
retracts the gesture of his sin already
committed with personal and fragile depth,
through a stack of other women, most,
already spoken for.
He thinks he has fooled everyone, and that
the realism within his world of fantasy, has
purpose. He dances with trees part time, hacking
bark just to watch them fall, and his grunts
echo in the wind as mighty maples drop their
leaves on the road among broken trunks and
branches. He notes the angles of their collapse,
the graceless limbs as they begin to fail. His touch
is treason and comes disguised within the wake
of houses waiting to be built and award winning
books, written in an attempt to wipe out identity. He
says he’s changed, that he’s not the man he used to be,
but I’m not easily seduced by words. I know he watches
his eyes in the mirror and adjusts his heart, to their
Frailty’s Baggage~Channeling Jim Morrison
There is no grief in language
when you’re stricken, cast down,
changes silhouette past silence
pausing sullenly through the
echoing corridors of my mind.
Torn posters without poetry,
without song, without love,
face hopes and fears in the mirrors
of pain; and his sex hangs unhidden,
and his metal heart sweeps though
abandoned philosophy as the curtain
closes on the sensual train.
I want repetition of song, recollection
in truth; to create from the oblique,
denying the erotic, an obeisance to
the power it steals from those of us
who can’t find anything to live for,
but everything to die for. Cast not your
demons of treachery, tears, anger, and
betrayal on me; the elevator is rising.
There’s fumbled endorphins offered
up as a cocktail with some really good
whiskey and meth cocaine. Smell the
lily and the rose,
let the bricks soften to deep greens,
let God speak austere though vacant
fields while you grow stillborn
through drugs so sweet. Let the
suicide take on it’s own craft and magic,
as day light comes and a stranger’s face
brings forgiveness; blooming, blooming,
in the scent of your sweet blood. Your rib
is gone, son of Adam and He shall
have her heart; lowered lids expand as
they rise in total annihilation. Tick tock.
White roses growing in the corner,
lilies dead on the sidewalk.
Theresa likes to write about matters of self-inflection and personal experiences. She likes to write about matters of an out-of body, out-of-mind state, as well as subjects of an idyllic, pagan nature and the occult. Theresa writes horror, as well as concrete gritty and realistic dramas. Theresa is said to be a witch and a poet. (within the horror writing community).
I couldn’t believe that the Dorito man had disappeared. His truck was always parked outside the ranch where he lived a pretty ordinary life with his wife and two kids. He seemed sane, always greeted me with, Hello runaround Sue, tipping his Mets’ hat to bow and giving me a big smile. I felt safe seeing the black logo, Doritos floating on his small white truck. For chrissakes I didn’t even know the Dorito man’s name.
My street was all-American from the outside but every house had a secret. Rose’s kids were all crazy. Sean, the sanest, had Down’s syndrome but Rose, his mother, refused to have him live in a halfway house and go on with a life of his own. Sean was thirty and strolled up and down our street, looking for someone to talk to instead of staying in the house with his brother who believed he was a general. Danny marched up and down the street in his father’s old marine uniform. The rest of the time he dressed in his mother’s clothes.
Next door, Ralph lived alone in his neat brick family home, worked at Shoprite and did some gardening on the side. Maybe something illegal on the side too. Now fifty, he was in a constant battle with his brothers and sisters for ownership of his parents’ house. He took out his frustration on his one eyed dog named Judy. I’d hear him screaming every morning: “You bitch Judy! Don’t pull so hard! You bitch… Whoa!” Continue reading
When they were children growing up in Shawnee, Oklahoma, her brother Kirby often pointed out Evelyn’s wide mouth. He’d say, “Little Sister, your mouth is stretchy as a clothesline on a windy Wednesday.”
It was true. Evelyn had no trouble nibbling her lips around spoonfuls of food – perhaps because as a child of the Dust Bowl, she seldom had enough to eat. She was from a family of ten. Her father George, a country doctor with a lascivious eye, abandoned the family and skedaddled back to Arkansas so he would not have to pay child support while he successively married wives number two through five. Perhaps Evelyn was hypoglycemic because in a jiffy she would become voraciously hungry.
In addition to possessing a ravenous appetite, Evelyn was a tightwad. In the mid-‘60s, when her two daughters were young, she was so penny-pinching, she would sit in the frayed velvet chair under one light bulb at night, stitching holes in their panties. She’d hoard soggy, crumpled Kleenexes complete with twisted stalagmites and stalactites in the caverns of her handbag and bathrobe pockets. Sometimes after Evelyn took the girls shopping downtown at the 40% off sale, and they were on their way home – even five minutes from home – suddenly she’d announce, “I’m hungry!” Then they’d have to stop right there at Orange Julius across from the college for a big splurge on hamburgers, fries and three of those fizzy, orange, delicious shakes that puckered their tongues with cistrus bubbles. The little girls were thrilled to have such a hungry mom!
Her appetite did not diminish as Evelyn aged. Continue reading