Friday, August 29, 2014

Creola the Kind

Hive-heads, you human honeycombs of disordered thought,
drip yourselves out of day rooms across the complex.
You have been made to feel like ants in a land of bustling giants,
each one of them wearing enormous, iron-soled clown shoes,
and I'm here to tell you--
things are about to change.

Come out to the green paradise of the asylum courtyard,
where morning glory and clematis vines climb the catatonics.
Which the cleric, which the classic presenter?
Come to where the learned diagnostician finally shuts his yap
and sits the fuck down 
on a pretty, donated bench depicting tiger swallowtails in flight.

Feel that? Inside your poor flood-damaged skull?
It isn't the medication.
This is real.

Even if you aren't Catholic--
though the mind reels at such easily remediable error--
Creola the Kind can help you.
See her enter by the main gate, with a cheetah on a chain.
The tethered cat is emblematic of the mind caught up in the Play-Doh sludge of encumbering madness.
Enter the healer.
Enter the liberator,
Creola the Kind.

As she joins you in the garden, 
she brings with her the sea breezes characteristic of the Creolan Mission,
though this institution exists landlocked,
blighted,
sandbagged into torpidity by a ballast of text books and dogma.
At the touch of her hand on your cheek,
you begin to feel something nearly forgotten,
as if she carries in her fingers a series of bees
who introduce peace, and a spreading sweetness.

Forget about your doctor.
Her nervous condition has become acute,
causing her to build elaborate nests out of prescription pads.
To burn sacred candles there would only result in disaster.
Instead, my dear florid crazies,
lean into Creola's offered remedy like infants at the breast.
Watch the clouds float by like milkships,
honeyships,
sending nets over the side and into your stormy constellation of symptoms,
plucking you new and gleaming from the tempest.

She is a fisher of men, and more particularly of women,
sent here with your own personal Bonus Round from God.
She is Our Lady of the Falling Piano,
Creola the Kind.
________

written with inspiration from a word list invented by mood wings!

image: the ridiculously cool Cristina Scabbia

 
 
 
 

12 comments:

hedgewitch said...

This has such richness to the language and image that reading it is like licking honey off the fingers(or your body part of choice)--sticky, difficult at times, but impossible not to love it. I was taken early by the cleric/classic presenter contrast, but then you whipped out even more lush language and skewered me through the eyeballs with the penultimate stanza,(the elaborate nests, the futility of candles) every word of which I could quote, but restrain myself. A tale worthy of Scheherazade, a myth more than worthy of a backdoor saint.

Mama Zen said...

There is some alliteration here that is so perfect it gives me shivers. Love this, Shay.

mood wings said...

I just turned 8 shades of purple, and my head popped off.

"Hive-heads, you human honeycombs of disordered thought,
drip yourselves out of day rooms across the complex"

"Come out to the green paradise of the asylum courtyard,
where morning glory and clematis vines climb the catatonics"

"donated bench depicting tiger swallowtails"

"this is real" followed by the homophone below ("reel") ... And then that whole line "the mind reels at such easily remediable error"

Your rhyme is amped up on this one! Even better than usual, and you're always fab at that: "The tethered cat is emblematic" and "Play-Doh sludge of encumbering madness" ... Really amazing sound in this one, Shay.

"As she joins you in the garden,
she brings with her the sea breezes" ... Gorgeous! I want to sit on the bench with her too!

"this institution exists landlocked,
blighted,
sandbagged into torpidity by a ballast of text books and dogma" ... Holy cats and blasphemy. This very well may be the best poem I've read of yours. At least up there in the top 10, 20, or 100. You've got so many, and so many are mind-blowing!

"At the touch of her hand on your cheek,
you begin to feel something nearly forgotten,
as if she carries in her fingers a series of bees
who introduce peace, and a spreading sweetness" ... Okay, lady. You really have to stick this one at the front of a book and get it published immediately. This poem is so WOW.

"elaborate nests out of prescription pads" ... Your brain should be on a pedestal, either displayed in an art museum or lecturing at university, sans body, of course. (That would make an awesome sci fi show.)

"my dear florid crazies"

This is the most absurd comment, but really, every two words, I encounter something that makes me wonder how in the slap-happy shenanigans you came up with that.

"your stormy constellation of symptoms" ... See what I mean? Your ears are the greatest gift. The way you hear these rhymes that lead you into brilliant descriptions that make people drop their jaws and find themselves incapable of doing anything but drool and utter a babbling "wow." What else can we say?!

"Our Lady of the Falling Piano" ... Ha! Of course she is.

Okay. Ready for the next one! Working on a word list as we speak. Did you even use anything from the word list? I completely forgot what was on it.

Björn Rudberg said...

First the imagery of humanity inside and asylum, with locks and chains of dogma and rules draws inspiration from the dystopian genres.. So great to have someone like Creola to come and draw them out of their prison, inspiring revolution and yes I think there are lots of men that would follow too.. Intriguing and surprising wordchoices..

Magaly Guerrero said...

You've put together a feast of visuals that makes my mind dance. I saw "morning glory and clematis / vines climb the catatonics," and the inaction of the climbed scared me.

All Hail Our Lady of the Falling Piano!

Kerry O'Connor said...

Poor chained cheetah! Not 100% convinced of Creola's kind nature...I rather fear her.

Kerry O'Connor said...

PS. I have had that Marilyn quote stuck to my classroom window for 20 years!

Gillena Cox said...

WOw this is intense, so creative, images, diction, mood; gut wrenching!!! luv it

have a nice Monday

much love...

Susan said...

Cruel to be kind: institutional safety is not where it's at. Your cinematic imagery gives pleasure, even if I slightly cringe at the story. The last to let the crazy out of their prisons in the USA was the gov't, who did little else. But give Creola a guitar or a pipe and we shall be moved.

Lolamouse said...

I love your St. Creola poems so much! Will she accept a bad Jew into her fold?

Jazzbumpa said...

My first thought was of office cubicles, then padded cells, then classrooms.

Maybe they're not so different.

Excuse me now, it's time to comb my clematis.

Cheers!
JzB

Marian said...

bonus round! ding ding ding! may as well embrace it if things are gonna change around here. nice, Shay.