ROUND-TRIP TICKET TO THE TWILIGHT ZONE
JONATHAN VOS POST
There's nothing to do, and you're all alone.
You stretch with a crack in the old backbone.
What have you done; do you need to atone?
The radio blares and some baritone
be-bops abstractly as horns are blow.
The blues have dried out 'til they're white as bone.
Where have you gone? Can you condone
the crumbling-down of the corner-stone?
The shape of a thorn is a sharp sharp cone.
Time cuts so deep, time finally kills the crone.
Time takes the crown and makes the king dethrone.
All you possess you will someday disown.
The honey of heaven smells, to the drone,
like the naked queen in eau-de-cologne
when everyone else in the hive has flown.
You hear the echo, step on the flagstone.
How could you possibly not have forknown
what's carved on the castle foundation-stone?
All of the portents have clearly foreshown
you'll face the problem before it's full-blown
as you faced yourself. Are you now full-grown?
The chrich-bells' laughter is the graveyards' groan.
Where is the child when the child's grown?
Cold is the cradle and cold the hearthstone.
Angels in the stanied glass have so high-flown
that none of them can touch the holy-stone.
Glasscutters' knives are difficult to hone.
Stereotypes on the imposing-stone.
Time and the compositor interpone.
Authority is all that they intone.
To be a craftsman, that's what I have known,
to feel a blueprint pull like a lodestone,
to leave the bank without the promised loan.
He holds his horn, that red-hot marrow-bone,
yet blows cold notes into the microphone
descending in a bending microtone.
The river runs down to the old millstone.
As the wheel turns you hear the axle moan
the water music, now a monotone.
Grave markers are attractively moss-grown.
Grass like cloth on a pool table, where mown
with wrinkles where chopped fragments were outblown.
Weeds here, the ruined castle overgrown,
their wild seeds, in the wind, overstrown
where the king and queen were overthown.
Whose overthrow? I think it was my own.
Time nor tide nor tempest can postpone.
The west wind blows, the weeds are lying prone.
Wind wails the reeds, I hear the saxiphone
condense despair down to a semitone.
What do I know that I could not be shown?
A long sheet of white linen has been sewn.
The teeth of all our dragons have been sown.
Lay down, lay down your grief beneath a stone.
Eyes open. Now the ringing telephone
dissolves the image of the fallen throne,
the dream song shattered by a single tone.
In every voice there is an undertone.
In every plan, room for the unforeknown.
How much of each of us remains ungrown?
The winds of time do king and queen unthrone.
I have been where the weeds are weather-blown.
A round-trip ticket to the Twilight Zone.
21 Nov 78
Copyright 1978,2004 by Emerald City Publishing.
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