Saturday, March 31, 2012


image borrowed from flickr


Today, I did a very foolish thing--
I ventured Outside, and stood
on the edge of the Infinite, traveling
beyond the plastic hedgerows to the massive
Sea of Wrecked Cars, many of which
I couldn’t recognize, their icons missing
from the Great Books of Yesterday,
a great glimmering web of chrome chunks,
hanging limply from high towers of rusted steel,
antiquated soft wheels on every one;

to my absolute amazement, midst
the mountains of mangled machines,
hidden from the watcher drones, I found
a forgotten field, a dewey pungent glen
teeming with sickening parasites;

a noisy clear stream slashed through
its clover-strewn center, strange clear water
bubbling and rushing over colored rocks,
until I straddled it like a Colossus
and pissed a pint into its arrogant face
until it clouded up wonderfully.

Standing at one corner of the tiny field
was a kind of scarecrow lashed to a stump,
a man of straw wearing something non-synthetic,
bibbed overalls I think they were called,
and from behind his flaxen shoulders,
from within the stump’s blackened heart,
a golden apple tree had sprouted, and had grown
up all around him, holding him tenderly upright,
and Zornus help me somehow their stamien caresses
had bore frightful fruit, plump yellow apples
hung from her hair branches;

Overcome with disgust, angry past reason,
I ate several of their prodigy, and crushed
many more beneath my steel boots,
their soft little bodies impaled
by the spikes on my active heels.

then just as my rancor was fully spent,
when I felt I could not stand
this unholy coupling a moment longer,
the scarecrow stepped off
the stump and drove a wooden stake
into my exposed chest, ripping through
the kevlar like it was tissue paper,

lifting me high above his head,
twirling me like a hog on a spit,
allowing me to catch a glimpse
of the Citadel before he dropped
me into a ring of his children’s teeth
who proceeded to tear me asunder
and feast on my entrails.

Glenn Buttkus

March 2012

Listed as #20 over at dVerse Poets--Poetics

Would you like to hear the author read this poem to you?


Brian Miller said...

holy crap...good stuff man...i like that it starts really based in reality as if it could happen then slowly becomes very surreal...your reactions the stomping and eating and then boom the scarecrow jumping into action...whew...i would have def been awake right there....

stu mcp (hate & hope) said...

Woah- as per BRian- this started off like you were in reality (maybe you were) but then the scarecrow coming to life and the feasting on entrails- kind of shook me up! This just took an unexpected twist- maybe you were daydreaming- maybe the whole thing occurred in the subconscious- but either way - this was just visceral. Some really nicenusenof language as well- free flowing but colourfully descriptive. Liked this very much my man - have a sausage

Memory Echoes said...

Hearing your voice shaping the words, these magnificent, ringing words, was a treat. I wish I had something more eloquent to offer you in terms of praise. Thank you for journeying into this dark, mythic realm, which mirrors so naturally the horrors of waking life. It is not an easy journey.

Umesh Rao said...

This one is brilliantly written. I read this right after I woke up and it is as if I was still in my sleep and I got this nightmare!
The imagery and the flow is very well done.

Semaphore said...

The scariest kind of dream is when it blends so well with the waking life - as you've done here - that the dreamer feels they have no way of knowing what is real and what is unreal. I've had this type of dream sometimes, and it is so unnerving I almost always wake up with a shudder and in a cold sweat.

Mama Zen said...

Oh, this rocks!

Jannie Funster said...

Some pretty visceral stuff in this, Glenn.

I'll try to steer clear of dreams like this, maybe never go to a drinking stream again.


Anonymous said...

First, brilliant poem, lots of symbolic imagery in there that may or may not have been intentional

Second, I never thought it was a dream, I thought from the very beginning (specifically, "I ventured Outside") that it was about the not-so-distant devolving future, and after week of running their poem through my mind, I still think it's about the not-so-distant devolving future with no glimmer of hope whatsoever.

I do understand how it could be a dream but the content is MUCH more than that. I'm seeing/reading a parable about the not-so-distant ineluctable devolution of humanity.

Glenn Buttkus said...

Yes, Anon, it was written as futurist
commentary on some of the most
virulent of man's natures, but it
was also a daydream, a cityscape
looming over a vast wrecking yard,
so good call on your part.