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[globalization poem]


The Erasure of Certainty

[i]


The erasure of certainty
Was never quite announced
But has arrived.
We start the day in rainbows,
Frogmarching the fractured colors
Into raw cement.
By noon,
We're into transformative commerce,
Renting the Andes,
Mortgaging Japan,
Selling Brazilian sunlight to central Alaska.
Evening.
It's getting hectic.
The temps are dancing upside down.
The boss starts speaking Tibetan.
A disenfranchised stapler turns carnivorous.

[ii]


Midnight
Brings Saturday.
Our jobs are still here
But our days off got exported.
Somewhere in distant Tangatilatia
The company's vacations are getting done
By vivisected wombats on the minimum,
Dazed in drugged-out hammocks by the sea.
And we ourselves are here,
Locked in concrete,
Surfing the IQ chances of the mutable,
Trading options in genetic bingo,
Leveraging Iraqi chihuahua patents
For prime-time shares in trans-Plutonic orbits.

[iii]


Sunday.
A flood of vomit washes through the streets.
A pregnant whale fractures from the sky.
The commuter train
Runs slap-bang into steel.
The trays in the cafeteria
Are wet with red.
The famished roses
Suck the taste of steel from the dead.
The stockmarket rises
But we are trashed by the cockroach derivatives,
By the prolapsed bonds,
By the dollar's brutal allergy to the eggplant.
And so we're struggling.
We're economizing,
We're going ecological,
The plumbing crippled, the sanitation gone,
Outsourced to a morgue in Ulan Bator.
Waste not want not!
Recycle!
Telephone conversations
Recycled five times, fifty,
The blurred voices
Dimmed by their twenty-tenth, their resurrection.
The lightbulb downsizings
Cut the room to blindness.
We type by touch,
Washed by the warm saliva from the ceiling.

[iv]


The dream compressor.
Four hours of sleep
To crush the rehab into us.
We dream communally
And swap our vital memos as we dream.
Diligent, suppressing panic,
Sweating on slithering foundations,
Slathered with doubt.
A spurt of giggling liquid
From dribbling valves.
Wet basement leakage.
Then Monday morning cracks the world awake.

[v]


Monday.
I wake one-handed.
My boneless legs are doing the jellyfish glide.
Then the turgilator grabs me and I'm shoved -
Five dimensions by three and a half -
Transmogrified!
I'm sprouting voices, I'm linking
With the Higher Powers.
The backscrubber wants a body option.
The photon
Wants to default on its transcedence.
Gravity
Wants to sit down and have a talk,
Wants to renegotiate
The whole foundation package,
Space and time,
The basic deal.

[vi]


As the TV news reports,
The wings of a butterfly are beating,
Ominously.



Publication details: "The Erasure of Certainty" was first published when posted on the Internet by Hugh Cook on 2003 October 27 Monday. Copyright © 2003 Hugh Cook. All rights reserved.



nightmare poem


Hangs upside down in the dragon's dungeon,
Pregnant with stingrays.
Thighs leaking.
The Malatroon grins,
Dissecting the knees of adolescents.
The fan spins faster.



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