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CLOSE / Parnassiad

Peace and Other Stories

Fragments of a Formerly Active Sex Life

Self-Exile as a Means of Preventing Prophecy
by Julian X  /  poetry  /  9 Jul 2007

Sitting and smoking in the nicest spot on campus,

a single glass table and two chairs, in the morning.

An automated sprinkler sprays the potted plants

and bushes, but I sit anyway with my cafe.

As I read, the spray travels, oscellating with

the wind.  Dimly aware, checking occasionally,

I keep reading.  With time, the sprinkler itself

is blown towards me some fraction of a degree,

and my feet are just clear.  People pass, and I

cannot help imagining them noticing the absurd

scene of this deluge in controlled arc landing

just beyond the shoes.  The grass saturates,

the concrete floods, and I think of those happy,

glowing green leaves, fed so constantly.

Surely some jungle will grow here.

Awakened by the passing onlookers’ eyes, I turn

and stare in awe at the arcs luminous beside me,

at the randomness of each trajectory, and yet

the remarkable consistency.  Each line its own thing,

the whole an ever-moving, ever-changing sculpture

just a few inches from my face and shoes.

Yet I feel safe, and no sooner notice this absurdity

than think I ought to move, lest the sprinkler be blown

a degree or two to the right and douse me.

I’m reading about the ancients and fate, by the way.

I move, and then a nice lady comes around

and turns off the water.  We talk briefly, and I tell her

of my Buddhist moment, gazing into the stream.

A minute later, it begins to rain.

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The Annihilation of Longing:
He dared, the muses said
On Wordsworth and Romantic Assumptions about Poetry
Self-Exile as a Means of Preventing Prophecy
Objets de méditation
I Want a Girl Like Doctor Doom's
The Ape Cheers at the Bride's Vagina
l'Esprit évacué
But in Her Heart Suspects / And How Much He’d Like
le Carlin
God’s Five-Fingered Hand, American
Old Silt
A Post-Colonial Tea
Julian the Philosopher
Growing Chilies
The Problem with Such Self-Congratulation
Songs of Sadness 1
Songs of Sadness 2
Songs of Sadness 3
Songs of Sadness 4
Not a Song of Sadness
Songs of Sadness 5
Songs of Sadness 6
Songs of Sadness 7-9
Songs of Sadness 10
Unrealized Soulmate
Another Original
Letter to the Other Man