Concerning the Delay of My Self-Immolation


A Stephanie L. Harper amazing’s – to quote another amazing writer – tale of feathers and fire and filial love with a sassy rejoinder as lagniappe. Other – and I am sure more famous poets – gnash their pens ‘twixt sorry teeth they did not write this. And would;st mount an expedition to that peak with pick and prybar. Go. Read. This is delicious! I blame Robert Okaji – O at the Edges – for the intruduction. He is marked up for one free felonious activity in but partial repayment thereof. J Richards

SLHARPERPOETRY

prometheus1994-elsierussell
Concerning the Delay of My Self-Immolation

“Ich kenne nichts Ärmeres
Unter der Sonn’, als euch Götter!
_______________~ J. W. von Goethe’s “Prometheus”

when i sacrifice myself
as a gift to my fellow humans
i promise it will be for nothing
so hackneyed as to protest
some hypoxic septuagenarian
hunched on a mountaintop
mistaking every garish tendril
to wisp from his head
for a well-honed lightning bolt

not that i imagine
there’s any portion of my no-longer-
combustible flesh i might set
upon the balance    that could be
tendered for passage to Elysium

but you can believe i’d pluck my own eyes
from their conceding sockets    send
the fabrics from my padded scaffold back
to China    & traipse forever    a blind
naked-as-a-mole-rat gnome in the garden of
unscented flowers    if the stygian prophecies
were to divine any semblance of purpose
in chaining my corpse to the cliff face

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