Across The Perilous Line, Series I

Across The Perilous Line, Series I  (for Harvey Bialy)

Interval and Legend

The avatars
of everyone
put themselves up for sale. 

The ghost
of the Bank
rides in like a grand tsunami.

Wrench Boy and Hammerhead
hide in their atmospheres
while their avatars join the line to get a job
crushed into grease-gray workhouses,
crammed into bomb-shelter bunkers. 

Crystal unimagined, if not quite yet unimaginable;
Black Box
but the thought of the schemers;
Black Lake inaccessible
or mooted with rumors
of ubiquitous contaminants . . .


Fade away.

The lie that no longer
dignifies labor.

You cannot take out a room
in The Old Hotel.

You trade in spurious opals.

You mute your African Rattles.

Hand over mouth
or choke rag.

Smash crystals with hammers
manufactured out of 
far harder crystals.

No one to work the garden.

Productive Order
spasms to melee.

No tunnel to Black Lake.

Intelligence trapped 
in its own loop,
its own exaggeration.

Humanity transmuted to a mule pack.

Ghosts in smoky bunkers
impossible to allay,
screech howls
through the head 
of Hammerhead
trapped in his bunker.

The Gorge

No new habit for Wrench Boy.

He stares in the witch's pot
to catch even a glimpse 
of his distant syzygy.

What does he see?
A jungle of re-wildered jaguars
scotched with dry spots, grown sterile,
a chest full of blood covered chizzels.

And oh yes a coil
of indestructible violets,
a globe for a mole
to make free.

Across the Perilous Line


We should fade
to the Old Hotel
and sit in the dark with Wrench Boy
as he stirs his cup
and stares in his pot.

Jaguar prowls about
an utterly invisible garden--
its stump-post African Rattles,
its resonance with a prior
existence as a roiling gorge.

Exaggerate African Rattles--
the chieftains too corrupt
to organize exploitation--
till not only their noises 
are available
for deployment by Wrench Boy, but what?

We must organize employment for Melee,
use the Loop itself
to begin to think.

Hammerhead: take out your chizzel.
I will stir my pot,
The Loop is not only 
cognitive melee.

We will gather the ghosts
and begin to compel the impossible--
once again shake out
the African Rattles
from where we sit in the dark
affined to Africa in Ruins--
devise the implicate Program.


Assuming the ubiquity of melee,
however the ghosts collude
with a fragile if coercive systematic
to wind the putative, universal coil;
We know this:
if Melee stirs the pot,
Melee defines the work.
Let the three confederates of the Loop
tune their African Rattles
and shut their mouths.
Avatars are everywhere
invisible to themselves--
Wrench Boy and the others
too long have abandoned their avatars
to inalienable complexities.
They populate existence
with ever-fading capacity for cognizance.
They know nothing of Crystal.
They struggle alone in the melee
or in torrential bands
whipped into functional arrangements
by  a system of dark loops
that gather the forces released by African Rattles.


In the basements
and the outlands
of every old hotel
the avatars of Hammerhead
toil like mules.

In the gorges
in the strangling loops,
the muted stumps of Rattles out of Africa--
even these flash stunted avatars.

The globe is a melee
of dark activity,
the avatars of Jaguar
traffic in the desiccated jungle.

Melee is lost in her particulates.

We must shake our rattles in secret
so to contain their forces
and Africa emit vibrations newly
and new informations 
surface in the pot. 


There is a secret opal cannot fade
though hidden away,
known in Wrench Boy's deep quiescence,
whose quiet quality takes you to Black Lake,
the limit to every fading.
Violets ring its rim.
Dawn  thunders.
Night fades.
Moles gather.

All this we must think as deep habit,
apply chizzel,
watch melee,
trust rattles,
set Jaguar
to study the tunnels.


If I had a chizzel,
the ghosts would turn to crystal.

I myself would ride the Loop
and propagate African Rattles.


The Old Hotel is built of adamant.

The Green Fuse--melee--the Garden,
where the Old Ones, liberated, liberate
and grow new models
of African Rattles
and circulate green gem words
through a perpetual loop.

Across the Perilous Line


But the avatars will not self-liberate,
enthralled by their own productivity
or inured to hard work--invidious habit,
as if each were not at all but the ghost
of an enervated Wrench Boy--
a Wrench Boy staring in a Black Pot
insensate to Crystal or Opal.
And the avatars of Hammerhead 
collapse with over-employment
in the closets and scrub-rooms
of the broken workhouse,
their archetype transfixed by an opal.


Let us all go to the zoo
and sniff the wallowing hippopotamus, happy mammal.
She is about to swallow down a world
in her motherly wet tooth-mouth.

Happy the world to return to the wet hippopotamus
wherein, long ago, the world came into being. 


Habitude rules the garden,
Black Lake but a sink of sick ghosts--
Jaguar, composed and fulfilled but inverted,
sits to keep company with  Wrench Boy
on the muddy beach of a lily-pad stagnant black water hole
at the long neglected unkempt heart of the garden.

The mules kick around a huge opal.


Each episode of existence--an isolate--
a brick in an incoherent building. Will it fall?
Or last for an inclement forever?
No light
in the bricks.

Or become in some subsequent moment a particulate
in another somebody's episode,
wrought with another sort of quality?

The wind itself whispers, whatever.
No light in this brick-wise ontology.

Or schematics organize some devilry
of existence or narratology. 
Tell your tale in the darkness that informs it.
But why?
Why not smash brick with brick?
Jump out of the hospital window.
The hell with whatever ontology.
Let the others be bothered with an alternative episode.
Put money in thy purse. 

But see how ten birds in the garden, oblivious to taxonomy,
had something to say to the grackle,
that was kicking up a fracas
in the flowering pink bush.
Who was it, alert on the green chair
that heard this--attention propaedeutic to healing.
And the light came back
without inversion of attitude
or busy transition of episode.


I saw a mole
who saw a ghost.

I saw a ghost
who sniffed a brick.

And the brick
propped up a mouth
so as to liberate all the habitués
of The Old Hotel.

It wasn't enough.

I saw inside a great opal
a world of trudging mules.

Across The Perilous Line


When Moles thinks
hope fades.

The Gorge
is full of mules.

What we inhabit
is habits.

Wrench Boy
shuts his mouth
but slaves to open again
The Old Hotel--
its dusty chambers
ridden with ghosts.

No clientele
in the neighboring gorge.

His crystal hangs like a star
in the muddy sky.

He must dig a tunnel to Elsewhere.

In secret he summons the mules
that he sees in his witch's pot. O Wrench Boy--
would that Elsewhere might zoom through your tunnel.

Let Crystal shoot through the loop
and The Old Hotel be re-charged with light.


Globs and mules
are secret assets.

Mules do not concern themselves with Black Lake
or make investments in opals,
but they understand Moles very well.
They know that work for The Old Hotel
will reanimate old habits--
no new-fangled chizzels,
no disingenuous discussion 
about magical crystals.

Put your trust in Wrench Boy,
his concern for your well-being will never fade.
In darkness and circumspection 
open your mouth;
examine your habits, O mules;
pay attention to Wrench Boy.
His empire is not of this world.
Dissolve it--the world--with immediate crystals.
In secret circulate light
in your secret loop.
Soon your dark bunker 
will rile with virtual jaguars.
The Old Hotel will appear on the lip of The Gorge.
Transmute old habits to a dance with the avatars of Wrench Boy.
The town managers will clean up Black Lake.
The Old Ones, dressed in white linen,
bow to the clientele
in the lounge of The Old Hotel,
if but for a visionary instant
in the quiet of the luminous loop,
Wrench Boy, joyous in his evening habit.


Ah me, this is fine method--
of some use but exaggeration,
like a dream from the heart of Violet.

The mules in the pot
in the Gorge--
the proliferation of slave-drudge avatars
in rigors of condition--
no method at all for these--
the camps and the bunkers
and their ubiquitous equivalents.

But The Old Hotel in the mind is Possibility--
let this be Hammerhead's doctrine.
It is at all events mine.
For the rest--
vigilance and thought, thought and vigilance.
Mere chance will come.
Watch the pot.
Court Crystal.
Keep company with Moles.
Study how to dig the secret tunnel
to the light of The Old Hotel.
You have the Loop.
You have Wrench Boy and the principle of syzygy. 


All this is writ in Red Book.
The halls and garrets in The Old Hotel itself
are transfixed by The Loop.
Wrench Boy knows it.
Its study becomes his habit. 


The Archetypes take counsel
in special chambers
of The Old Hotel.
A model coil, safe from any mole, an African Rattle,
never made to sound, an African Rattle
stored in special vessels, one in every room
of The Old Hotel,
invisible to any mortal guest of it,
but containing, 
if but an Archetype make it sound
The Gorge Itself.


Moles, not only Wrench Boy, is an Archetype;
and they and the others
keep magisterial chambers
in The Old Hotel.


Liberation is an Archetype
presented in the fact
that the others have their being there;
and the gardens, of several genres,
about the great resort's immaculate grounds.
Melee abides, without abiding,
in the spaces among them,
and as the Energetic
that in secret drives them all.
And innocent Violet. That Being itself
were innocent
in spite of it all.


Jaguar discovered it had not always been that way.
He read it in red Book.
The avatars multiplied, the avatars divided,
they became many, they became many ones
in an ordered hierarchy of manifestations,
in a heterarchic series, in discordinate bunches.
The latter members absorbed their priors
as parts of their natures.
The prior members emanated those
more singular than they, more distant from their archetype.
Again and again
the avatars poured forth from their originals;
again and again they were re-absorbed.
It did not happen in time. But a coil
circumscribed the process,
pervaded and contained it. The Way Up
and The Way Down
were one and the same. Before everything,
the Archetype. Before the multiplicity
of archetypes, One Archetype, Being itself.
Impossible to distinguish.
There was merging and emerging--
a blur between the tiers of the magnificent parsings.
The passage form the Great Gorge to Being:
that was the Prime Deviation,
To cross and to re-cross the which,
were one and the same.
And there you stand 
Across the Perilous Line.


Thus: Being itself
was not that innocent
when given to think.
It imparted to the appearance of the avatars and the archetypes themselves
the appearance of Being.
Each individual coiled and recoiled about itself,
emanation and return,
and when it reached beyond its undivided apparency
                                                             to Singularity as such,
in that moment it recovered Being
and knew the Great Gorge.

History is Apparency--violence
on the journey outward,
the lure of harmony for the journey home;
desire for expression and harmonic immediacy
the spur for the journey outward,
melee and longing for Harmony
the lure for Return. 
Manifestation: African Rattle and Great Drum;
Liberation: The Garden, Black Lake, Vision of Crystal,
                                                        Knowledge of Black Box,
the thought of Return.
Suck and swoosh of the Bellows.
The Way Up and the Way Down are the Same.
Across the Perilous Line.


But here
the Same is a phantom,
the ghosts that swoosh and hover
above the disorderly moieties,
the fiduciary packages of mortals,
soiled and sold,
valorized, prized, and priced highly,
or discounted, discarded, 
as labor is enterprized, attenuated, and trafficked
across the globe.
The dregs of time. The Great Gorge,
Tartaros, Gehenna, "The Pit"--
the mule-house of the lie of identity--
black bones, red blood.
Does matter have an archetype?
Is the Gorge itself, not a mouth of light?
You can hear the luminous drumming over the horizon
as if the gathering of enmity in hordes
soon to arrive or arise,
the promise of the Great Conflagration.


Jaguar was amazed to read all this.
It seemed a more piquant text
than his own classical lectures
on ontological subjects
delivered in the academic lounges
of The Old Hotel.
He'd take some notes on it.