Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Ballad of Agnes Lumpf

Agnes Lumpf changes her name to Dakota Descartes,
and starts haunting the coffee shops. 

"Don't I know your name from somewhere?" people always ask.
"You might," she responds mysteriously, putting on a face she copied from her cat.

THE CRUEL PASTRY by Dakota Descartes

Light the slipknot of brusque temptation!
Immediate zoology! Feet talking ropes in hemisphere duplicity!
Highways of dough!
Icing made from the text of dead letters!
You are the planet I cannot plumb, no matter the tenderness of the telescope.

Soon, Dakota Descartes has a cadre of rapt followers,
squinting at her from behind clouds of tobacco smoke.

She learns what the famous poet must--
how to say "In night, no sun; in day, no moon" as if it were the Gettysburg Address,
and to do so with a straight face.

"Where are you from?" her fans ask breathlessly.
"Rangoon," she replies. (She is actually from Muskegon, Michigan.)

"And your parents? Were they artistic, too?"
Dakota looks off into the half distance, 
her smile as ethereal as an Enya song.

"My father was a painter, (a plumber)
and my mother a sculptress." ( a soap opera addict and part time nail tech)

When Dakota Descartes wins the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry,
the President of the United States calls with congratulations.
"Oh, him," she says distractedly, waving a hand and finishing her black tea.

Global melancholy, manufactured star,
all-knowing duffers at the drop-off of aftermath's postmaster,
weary the practical nurse of philanthropy
into a crying stew of the celestial jeremiad!

This from her masterpiece, FUSION OF DOLL AND CYCLONE.

One dreary morning in 2015, 
Dakota Descartes dies from huffing hair coloring
in bathroom number six of her palatial estate.

The staff finds her.
Her tragic death seals her place in the pantheon of immortal poets.

Dakota Descartes 1977-2015. In her own amazing words:
"Death, wearing buskins, treads darkly toward the pyx."

Oh God.
Total brilliance.

Wow!
____

Image at top by Toril Fisher. Posted for Artistic Impressions With Margaret.

The words used in Dakota's poetry came mostly at random from the dictionary.

However, I made up the telescope line, and I'm kind of liking it now. Lord above.

And now, Lambs, off to "camp" with you...


21 comments:

hedgewitch said...

Hilarious and skewering satire, actually, though also plenty on point. One feels the melancholy of a soul that longs for the (hypothetical) glamor of creative release without the pain, inconvenience and tedium of real introspection, or say, work. Or something. Many laughs with this one, as it really flies to the bullseye on so many levels.

Kerry O'Connor said...

Brilliant! I have a feeling the poet, Dakota Descartes, will have an even greater cult following post mortem.

This gave me such a laugh and the dictionary poetry is pretty damn inspired.

TexWisGirl said...

i just love it! you can create terrible poetry as if it was good poetry and have us marvel at your brain! :)

Outlawyer said...

I like the telescope line too! And the cruel pastry--I think Dakota sounds like she will have a fine future wherever she may travel, and how transmuted. Very funny--k. (PS- my daughter is going to Rangoon this week; Yangon now; a bit crazy.)

Susan said...

Oh, I am wounded, the arrow found its mark! hahaha I enjoyed this entire saga and especially this:

"She learns what the famous poet must--
how to say "In night, no sun; in day, no moon" as if it were the Gettysburg Address,
and to do so with a straight face.

Marian said...

Dumb ole sun. Stupid moon!
Love this, love a pretendah.

Sara said...

You crack me up. I loved this line, "Icing made from the text of dead letters!"

This entire poem was FUN and I loved the picture. Can you really die from huffing hair coloring?

Anyway, you made me laugh and it was needed today. I'm way behind and I already miss the hour I lost.

Have a good week!

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Love. This! "You are the planet I cannot plumb". LOVE this line! LOL about the poet's portentous phrases uttered "with a straight face". Love "as ethereal as an Enya song". LOL. You are. Brilliant. Just keep away from the hair coloring, kiddo.

Grandmother (Mary) said...

Love the lamb picture and double love your poem about the Dakotas in life. Incisive but made me laugh- good combo.

Autumn said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Lydia said...

Oh, brilliance indeed. You just blow my mind, Shay. No one writes like you, no one. You should be famous on a planetary scale. I bow to you for this one.

Jennifer Wagner said...

Hilarious! Wasn't it her who wrote, "stingrays fathom the dim sum of the pleaides" or some such? Anyhow, I've never gotten over it.

Cloudia said...

I am your Poetry devotee!



ALOHA from Honolulu
ComfortSpiral
=^..^=

Mama Zen said...

If only I could be as ethereal as an Enya song!

Shawna said...

I was initially offended and defensive about this, as I am 80% encyclopedia/nonsense poet, but now I love the poem (and Dakota) ... especially these sections:

"Light the slipknot of brusque temptation!
Immediate zoology!"

"Icing made from the text of dead letters!"

"'Oh, him,' she says distractedly, waving a hand and finishing her black tea."

"Global melancholy, manufactured star"

"weary the practical nurse of philanthropy
into a crying stew of the celestial jeremiad!"

"aftermath's postmaster" ... You are a riot.

"Dakota Descartes dies from huffing hair coloring
in bathroom number six of her palatial estate.
The staff finds her.
Her tragic death seals her place in the pantheon of immortal poets."

"Oh God.
Total brilliance.
Wow!"

If I ever had a masterpiece, it would absolutely be called FUSION OF DOLL AND CYCLONE.

I'm dying to read a book of Dakota's poems.

Lynn said...

Fun poem, FB. I think Rangoon is a better place to say she is from, too. :)

Helen said...

It's like you picked me up and dropped me in a wonderfully nutty magic land with this ~ great write.

my heart's love songs said...

wow!

my heart's love songs said...

and... wtf?

Margaret said...

Agnes was obviously brilliant as her imagination certainly transformed her! Too bad she couldn't believe it herself. Your ability to create personalities, back stories always floors me... I tried to write to a recent challenge of yours that asked of us the same them (kind of) and mine is so so bad. I'd really like to be better at this sort of writing! BTW - I purchased this giclee canvas print - I adore the humor of it.

Sorry it took SO LOOONG for me to visit and comment. I had computer issues - have been using my phone for a while... and my finger typing is not the greatest.

Thanks for participating in my challenge

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I think I am your biggest fan.after Zacky! I gobbled up every word as if it was a jelly doughnut.