Friday, October 21, 2011


St.George and the Dragon--by Gustave Moreau.

Night descends
like a straight razor in a morgue...

The cutting edge of the
moon illuminates a blood-spattered
canvas, as art imitates death.

From the tenements there comes a wail--
siren song to the thunderbeat of jackboots
in perfect sync, a mirage or a memory, but
you can't trust a fascist to tell you which.

In the night I sense that he
is soaring over the city
with his searchlight and his megaphone.
Solo flight in a jackdaw dream.
Brownshirt in a black sky.

He wears a silver swastika on a golden chain.
He has come to inspect my paintings.
I tell him that once viewed they
are no longer mine, but belong to the world,
like Saint George and the Dragon.

Pretending to be a Brahman with
high-falutin' ways, his tail switches
like an alligator who disapproves of my shoes.
His lips curl into a sardonic smile.
Flames shoot from the sides of his mouth
as he contemplates his next tactical move.

When I escape, the sky
is on fire in my rear-view mirror.
Pink flambe in a Black Russian's eye.

Is Paris Burning?

Quick, try to remember the year you were born...
and were you in love with Anastasia after all?

Across town it is ladies night at
the poolroom, where Miss Manners
is learning to let down her hair
as she falls off the chair,
lying in a lump like yesterday's oatmeal--
the foam on her lips like white caps
on a sea of unspoken desire.

Her words float in the air like alphabet soup...

Unhand that rainbow, you cad,
and let me color my world like
a purple-assed baboon
walking backwards on the moon!

The hushed gallery waits for her to tee off again.

While I sit lonely
by a fountain
where naked cherubs
are pissing away my dreams,
knowing that collaborationists
stalk their own shadows
while pigeons goose-step
through the square--
but none can tell you whether ghosts
sit up and listen to the footsteps
that echo through an empty museum.

Now, the edges of the world begin
to blur, like a painting by Monet.
I must draw my own conclusions.
And I am running...
ducking down blind alleys
searching for the truth
that will open my eyes.


  1. so cool...a museum visit, wether real or imagined or looked at from the rear view mirror can take us to all kind of places..whew...i'm a bit breathless...and smiling...

    esp. loved the below lines because i think it's the same with our poetry as it is with the painting or with every art work...
    I tell him that once viewed they
    are no longer mine, but belong to the world,
    like Saint George and the Dragon

  2. really like that closing stanza where you kick into action with your own response...some fierce imagery in here...and i laughed out loud at let me color my world like
    a purple-assed baboon
    walking backwards on the moon!

  3. Hope you're not offended if I compare this to Dylan's, Vision of Johanna.

    Really, really good write, Timoteo.

    And you and me...we ARE the world!

    How cool that would have been if Neil Armstrong had said, "One small step for man...a giant leap for purple-assed baboons!"

    How could one be offended with that kind of comparison?

  5. love that purple babboon lol great blog tim xxjen only time i had a purple one was sitting on whitbys cold concrete wall by the sea

  6. JENNY,
    Ha ha...that's what warm hands are for!

  7. WOW! I always love your writing, Timoteo, but this one has to be one of your best. It is so rich, and I love following the thoughts from myth to memory to questions to observations. Just one terrifically wonderful read. Truly great writing.

  8. Beautiful ekphrasis - you took me right inside the painting ... gorgeous

  9. some stunning lines, well done.

    keep it up.

  10. SHERRY,
    Thanks..for some reason, this has always been one of my favorites of my own work--glad you like it too!

    Good to see you back!

    There's more in the deep dark recesses of my mind where that came from. LOL

  11. Brilliant. I am duly impressed! I love the pictures you draw so cleverly. I need to go back and savor it several times as there are layers of learning here. Great poem, Timmy Baby! hugs,pat

  12. Man, this was heavy. Such imagery. Makes ya wanna go back and read it again and again.

  13. I just loved this. I felt like you were taking me all over the place in each stanza and, for me, it was as though I was fleeing a critic of my life's work and the hushed gallery is waiting for me to tee off and of course I sliced it!

  14. A lot of images drawn wandering in empty museum but your last lines for me are the best ~

  15. You put A Night at the Museum to shame.

  16. You know, Timo, you can really write. This is one of the best I've read in a long time--especially the first half--very tight, but I also enjoyed how the poem became more dreamy/nightmarey toward the end. Thanks for the intro to Moreau, as well.

    PS Yes, I walked my pet cricket. Once.(But not my goldfish, though I did use to try to pet him. He never seemed very affectionate, though.)

  17. A great deal to love and admire in this, Timo; amazing imagery, crisp, distinctive language-- I especially love:

    \In the night I sense that he
    is soaring over the city
    with his searchlight and his megaphone.
    Solo flight in a jackdaw dream.
    Brownshirt in a black sky.

  18. woe I am impressed. Those are fabulous stanzas of imagery.The ending was awesome. Great write Timoteo! :)

    I answered your question.

  19. Love your humor, love your voice, love your style, love your poetry...have I missed anything? Always enjoy my visits...this was no exception.

  20. You have so much going on here, and I like it all!! So well done with wry humor, some gallows darkness too along with wit and style. You rock my friend!

  21. PAT CEGAN,
    Thanks so much, darlin !

    Feel free...there's no extra charge for that!

    Ooh wow...and you hit Gerald Ford in the head on the sidelines!

    No offense, Ben Stiller !

    Thanks for your lovely comment...I used to try to walk my pet rock, but that was a real drag!

    I know coming from you, that's not just a line.

    Thanks for flowing my way!

    Welcome aboard!

    NATASHA, my body?

    Happy Halloween!

  22. This is incredibly well written. Your use of language is spot on. It is clever (art imitates death,) gothic (cutting edge of the moon) and topical (brownshirt in a black sky.) I love it all. Damned good!

  23. SELMA,
    Thank you my dear. I like your'd fit in well around here! Hey, your new blog looks quite intriguing!

  24. Ah, Tim, no one can make me laugh, cry and feel uncomfortable all in a few lines the way you can. Well, maybe Congress, but for different reasons. I have to admit that I sometimes need to close my eyes to the truth.

  25. KOBICO,
    What a great testimonial...if I ever got the chance, I would kiss your feet (but not with your shoes on).