I like a lot of things but I don’t like routine. I’m athletic. The hives explain nothing. A wizard once told me that the winter is sublime but I don’t believe him. Winter is a philosophy humbled by a frozen river. Bettye Lavette singing “Most Of The Time.” Anger’s lightning dangling from a doorknob. It’s tempting to laugh at all this and invoke the presence of foam. The further development of flotsam is nothing less than an enigma. I feel too fluttery, and the hem of my coat is ultramarine. At times like this a bottle of syrup is indispensable. Please. Sit down. Have a pancake. Opinions are just puddles of thought. Watch your head. The winch is lifting an ancient conviction. I’m excited. Aren’t you? I feel enriched by this excursion. When I get home I’ll send you a loaf of pumpernickel. The highway is long but the affections are longer. The sky continues itself on the ground in doors and reflections. Pleasure and pain are perversely intertwined. Pearls and eggs gently affirm the splendor of perception. Nevertheless, I must often strain to understand my needs and desires. Things come to me but I don’t know from where. Or how. Although sometimes I am given clues. A sound. A color. A mirror. I can hear the postman. The one with Gothic sideburns. He makes my emotions turn green. They fall from my mouth in the form of rain and reflect rattlesnakes and suicides. I carry a pitcher of ghosts and pour them on a sentence pulled by a hedonistic predicate. The garden hose is correspondingly sexual. Hope, on the other hand, is hilariously bitter, like a clarinet convulsing with a supernatural alphabet. And so, I started to have this idea of pursuing a PhD degree in astrophysics, or gastronomy. I wondered if there might be a gastronomy of stars. Infinity must be sampled intelligently, as if it were a cracker spread with red onion and marmalade. I ended up joining the rodeo. The first rodeo I was in I rode a sheep in the mutton bustin’ contest in Florida and rode my sheep the longest and was put in the local newspaper. These days I mainly ride bulls. I have broken my tailbone, pulled muscles in my back, and accidentally solved a math problem by falling off of a horse and counting the number of zeros of a rational harmonic function until my head hit the dust and filled with stars. Since then, I mostly just think in the dark while sampling bits of chocolate. It hurts less than bikini waxing, and the occasional glimpse of being a conscious organism.
John Olson is the author of numerous books of poetry and (chiefly) prose poetry,
including Dada Budapest, Larynx Galaxy, and Backscatter: New And Selected Poems. He is also the author of four novels, including In Advance of the Broken Justy, The Seeing Machine, The Nothing That Is, and Souls Of Wind.