Song in Barbarous Fumarole of the Japanese Crested Ibis

By Will Alexander b. 1948 Will Alexander

The wings pierce as if they were eternity.
—Shuzo Takiguchi

The Japanese Crested Ibis is now extinct.

“To claim as arcane vapour
ruination by intrigue
by kindled leprosy morays
so that I take up in my glottis
these moral hallucinogens which actively dim
which nourish themselves on behalf of active heavenly terror

as if forking my verbs with cryptography
with bird interrogation
with a haunted crystallography of deception
mentally cross-fertilized with defective aural lobotomies   
so that I momentarily sing
with a cosmic catch in my wings

floating above
a black waterfall of rye
dazzled by partial torments
by seeming in-seminal scatterings   
by snow in smoking germinal mazes

it could be said that my blood has been scorched
by intensive Venusian plasma   
by updrafts of wheat
by molecules that slaughter
my throat continuously parched   
by wild in-secular genetics   
by unfiltered parchment   
by incipient nerve cuisines   
empowered by listless cranial singing
carving androgynous shapes with my voice
me
an ominous fluttering angel   
kept aloft by diagrams
of smouldering electrical truth

as a tempestuous solar charisma
I can never speak in terms of oceanic remorse
or with the temperament of fictitious remedial doves

no
I am heightened by sudden sociological flaws   
by prisms of seasoned parallel tornadoes

though shattered by various Saxon devices
I am the flame throughout the soaring absolute   
I denigrate
I take on sanguine territorial opposition   
with a force
enriched
with untoward fertility
with a dominate tendency to waver
with excessive a-regional metrics
with inhaled phantasmics
spilled on fortuitous migrational soils
there is ermine
there is discourse by nugget
there is scarification by increase

each of my echoes spinning through pictographic parabolas   
graphic
with indecisive incest
which abstractly reduces
which plummets
into the frothing systemic of bees

a crepuscular arachnoidal utterance by sun bells   
by pestilential archive
by vivid tourmaline exposure

there is expressed interstice   
flotational temperature by prophet   
by sun exposed Greek

therefore
a palace erected in bone plazas
to worship each grainy avian heaven   
each tumultuous spire by detraction   
so that there exists the one true clarity   
the cloudy singular beam
more blinding than sun noons on Mercury

pinnacle by rot
by hovering phoneme & tremor
by sorcerous frigate & plasma
by flaming interior sign
by defenseless grenadine morals
as with Enoch*
I continue my metamorphosis
singing in capsized tarantula tree
melodramatic by despair
cogitation by a sense of entrapment   
split along the cusp of a-tonal meridians

each guttural burst
struggling at great odds
at hieroglyphical knife point
dazed with magnetic electrical fuchsia

each of my wingbeats as death   
as co-existent termination   
as spoiled rudiment by colour

so I splice my lamentations   
& open the diachronic
to spawned confusional rotations   
amidst the equator of sundogs   
heated by corrupted memorial sparks

my beak aligned with cryptographic cunning
with tantric scratches inside my steaming ink well treaties   
my aggressions in tune
with an aching heraldic nopal
its coronal glare
flashing upon a-clinical watery mnemonics
filled with carnivorous morphine & diamonds

flying in Bardo*
above the scattered wrath of oneiric sesame pontoons   
eclectic with my knowledge
of furious marginal germs & diseases
hyper-extended with discord
those bony schismatic ghosts
fused by synchronic retinal burning
drawing from the sky
a milk
seasoned with phlogiston & Hittite galvanics

yes
chandas flecked*
with sulphurous heretical clauses

because
I deny
& re-invigourate
I tear down
I re-pontificate
the bile from empty animal invasions

breaking through poisoned civil cataleptics   
entangling quotidian farm worlds   
with my traitorous acids
culled
from a barbarous daily wine

here I am
winged
with oracular sun-dust flowers
my eyes scattered into translated demon   
like a blue demonic spy
sailing across transparent carrion planes   
so as to re-inhabit the dead
so as to scan the weightless centigrade margins

in one simple respiration
I summon the tendencies of electrocuted corpses   
the stony wrath
of drowned Phoenician sailors

my voice drills
with North Asian alewahs*
akin to compounded rock points on Vesta or Ceres

yes
I drain from stars pre-glottal alluviums
moth ceramics   
a chalice of rote   
pestles shaped
by incipient hulls of deadly carbon grains

I sing
across distracted ingress baying   
with sounds
not even the dead can decipher

I can only increase funeric confusion   
the invisible force which uplifts the void   
which ingests the force of negation & mirage

yet I sculpt
in weakened anti-negation
spasms rampant with fire
distorting by quotidian thumb piano

by plagues which sustain gregarious verbal gestation   
subsumed from susurrations extracted from the scattered   
logistics of Titans
from the fevered optical beams
spilled from greenish sundial eternities

Ramses*
or Hatshepsut*
or Akhenaton*
invading as cherished cyclical spores   
their luminescence by blankness   
by swarming alchemical moons   
by bewildering errata
as in rum by higher being
by serpentine
& flowing whiplash ideology

above all
I’ve cosmically transmuted the atmospheric bone   
the dementia enveloped by protest
by turquoise weight
& somnific solar inclusion
singing by eclipse torrent
by waves of flame erupting from mirrors & dreams of post-
extinction

a geneaology of circles   
beyond aphids’ scribbling
& logical strontium dialectic

my bleeding unbearable shadows   
brewing
a sumptuous fever of poetic electrical charisma   
its lightning shafts
of snow & rum & blood
mixed with the grains
of stunning axial omegas”

FOOTNOTES: Enoch: solar hero. “His years are numbered at 365.”

Bardo: the state between death and rebirth.

chandas: “The Vedic idea that the Spirit of creation framed all the movements of the world ... in certain fixed rhythms of the formative word, and it is because they are faithful to the cosmic metres that the basic world-movements unchangingly endure.”

alewahs: coined term, meaning “bitter cry” (ale, bitter; wah, cry).

Ramses: reigned at Thebes 1,300 years before Christ.

Hatshepsut: the only woman known to have actually ruled Kemet (Egypt) as the “Living Horus” (pharaoh).

Akhenaton: Egyptian pharaoh, ruled circa 1350 B.C. Called the Heretic King. “Thirteen hundred years before Christ he preached and lived a gospel of perfect love, brotherhood, and truth. Two thousand years before Mohammed he taught the doctrine of the One God. Three thousand years before Darwin, he sensed the unity that runs through all living things.”

Will Alexander, “Song in Barbarous Fumarole of the Japanese Crested Ibis” from The Stratospheric Canticles (Pantograph Press, 1995). Copyright © 1995 by Will Alexander. Used with the permission of the author.

Source: The Stratospheric Canticles (Pantograph Press, 1995)

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Poet Will Alexander b. 1948

Subjects Animals, Nature, Arts & Sciences, Language & Linguistics

Poetic Terms Free Verse

Biography

Will Alexander is a poet whom critics have not been able to categorize easily. An African-American child of the post-World War II baby boom who grew up in south central Los Angeles, he also does not fit any clichéd image of that generation's avant-garde poets. The son of a World War II veteran, Alexander was influenced by the revolutionary struggles of the Third World that first inspired his father during a military tour of the . . .

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SUBJECT Animals, Nature, Arts & Sciences, Language & Linguistics

Poetic Terms Free Verse

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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