Tributum by Heike Anan

They wear their hair cut even along the forehead
So as not to stand out among Sam’s men
But due to loss of administrative
Competence and necessary expertise
For fail-proof trials with mattresses and peas
Who can tell if he’s real or an actor
Except by examining his teeth?

It’s the beast, the outcast, the rump
The unpredictable, the threat that’s snuffed
And the massacre begins at the children’s table

Old man
What would you do for a Pindaric Ode?

It is not the myth that kills
The boy who dreams of being the hero,
The heralded star of the battlefield
Attaining practiced strength and grace
To dance among bullets,
The unconscious precision
And uncanny accuracy
To synthesize an infinity
Of sounds and movements,
Weaving in and out of chaotic scenes
Holding his merit closer to his chest
Than his grandmother’s amulet

Look deep enough into the eyes of power
And you will see who you are, Hobo man
Unfit for the mother you don’t recognize

No, I’m not talking about that old dinosaur
But her, beside you, on the bus
Do you have a footnote for that opinion?
I thought there was…
Something beyond.
Measure. Something beyond measure.
No mind

Is that him, the imperious tinker, is he still here
Watching the same old play?
Don’t waste time with subtleties
Take the purple bubbled Venus
And pour him a glass of champagne.
Tell him the story about the maiden
Who lived in a lush and verdant valley
Dreaming of snow-capped mountain peaks.
O O O O the subliminal ripeness—
So meticulously framed, sir, so well-played

They’ve read the efflorescent walls
Mene mene
Fifty dollars
And a moment of forced significance

Fake it, fake it better!
Bring out the old violin of Ingres
She’ll tell you things that cannot be said
She’ll give you your damn play
Musicman, listen to her sing
That expert response to fumbling hands
That measured moan to the flickering tongue
She was the tease and the whore, pure spirit
Steeping her tea in a cup of coffee
With the restlessness of a stuffed peace

No tears are shed but for You,
Immortal man

What, you don’t believe?
Then take your bottled meanings, your banaustic gods and sneeze
If you would water a stone

It is not the logic that kills
The certain things that cannot be untrue
Condemning them to death by slow abstraction
Shackling them with the weight of clever confusion
Dropping them nine fathom deep to measure an empty sea
Publishing findings in another study guide to the old white whale
Breaking meaning




Heike Anan is the pen name for an American writer currently living in Sweden.



(Front page image via)

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