Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Who are you? Existential Alice

“Who are you? ” said the Caterpillar. This was not an encouraging opening for a conversation. Alice replied, rather shyly, “I--I hardly know, sir, just at present--at least I know who I was when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several times since then.”

Louis Carroll http://www.hoboes.com/html/FireBlade/Carroll/Alice/Wonder/alice5.html

sleep and waking, birth and death
changes appear to appear and disappear
in ego-smoke of mindless carnival mirrors
as the embers ebb and glow from breathless
smoldering ashes of pipedreams

caterpillars, butterflies and small humans
converse in cryptic conversations
resisting inevitable dissolution
into the breath that draws them back
before pupae and pipe

caterpillar’s query
quickens inevitable quandaries
non-quintessential quirks of identifying nomenclature
signatory separation
of dualistic duels of dangled participles and unnamed nouns

phenomenal phony phonemes
flitting from languishing lingual lies
lingering in vacuous vapory vehemence
mouthing nonsense
of etheric effigies of formless fancy

ravens are like writing desks
slithy toves did gyre and gimbal
walruses weep, and oysters run
 in the dream we have become what seemed to be
 therefore become nothing at all

Who are you?

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