Monday, June 27, 2011

Lament For the Death of Parsifal Hoolig

image borrowed from bing

lament for the death of parsifal hoolig

it began to rain cows
and in light of the prevailing situation in the
the agronomy students sowed disorder
the engineering professors proclaimed their
the philosophy janitors oiled the staples of
intellectual reason
the math teachers verified crying the two
plus two
the language learners invented good bad

while this was happening
a wave of nostalgia invaded the country’s
and the couples look at each other as
and twilight was served for lunch by
mothers and fathers
and the pain or the hurt slowly dressed the
little ones
and the chests fell off some and the backs
off others and to the rest nothing fell
off at all
and they found God dead several times
and old men flew through the air holding
tightly to their dried testicles
and old women hurled exclamations and
felt painful stitches in their memory
or oblivion
and various dogs approved and toasted
with Armenian cognac
and they found a man dead several times

near a carnival Friday ripped from the
under an invasion of autumnal insults
or over blue elephants standing on Mr.
Hollow’s cheek
or close by the larks in sweet vocal
challenge with summer
they found that man dead
with his hands openly gray
his hips disordered by the events in
remains of wind in his throat
25 cents in his pocket and its still eagle
with feathers wet from infernal rain

oh dear ones!
that rain fell years and years on the
pavement of Hereby Street
without ever erasing the slightest trace
of what had happened!
without dampening one of the humili-
ations not even one of the fears
of that man with hips scrambled tossed
in the street
late so his terrors can mix with water
and rot and end!

and so died parsifal hoolig
he closed his silent eyes
kept the custom of not protesting
was a brave dead man
and while his obituary did not appear in
the New York Times and the Chicago
Tribune paid no attention to him
he did not complain when they picked him
up in a truck from the city
him and his melancholy look

and if someone supposes this is sad
if someone is going to stand up and say it
is sad
know this is exactly what happened
nothing else happened but this
under this sky or vault of heaven

Juan Gelman

Posted over on Poems and Poetics

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