Vaudeville Contagion

DNA infects the planet with puppets.
The paws of dead beasts make
their way up the backs of animals.
Strings from the sun and the moon tug

on limbs of mammals. Shadows
must be an audience of children,
but who hears any laughter?
Land masses and islands crawl

with marionettes. Howdy Doody's
tight ship parts the sea to multiply
by two. Volcanoes sneeze, plains
cough, and river mouths vomit.

Old sock with buttons sewn to its toe,
at moments like this dusgust shames
Charlie McCarthy, yet tomorrow,
yesterday continues a block-headed story.
tin eureka

O supreme dervish
defy your patrons and harvest
your canvas, your vanguards
your innermost plankton
through soldierly baptisms
and icons and crossfire
and caskets

defy these virgins of the eventual
whose every widow owns a window
seeing all flora with and without
the hard parade of souls
that often passes over
like a coma in the

soft circa be the light
by which your prey portal
teaches its most vulnerable
courtship - that powerful twin
ephemera of postcard hopes
and silent valentines

defy your epic satellites
your quarterly poisons
and ransom -
that juggernaut on stilts
blocking out the next eclipse
and accept your tin eureka
peter schwartz
rich murphy