Moonpie and mumbly peg. Numb to dock-sound
with mumenshantz on a quicktime loop. I’ve a sasquatch thumb
in a felt bag with a drawstring cord. Lord, lay your sweaty palm
upon my tenderer and grunt a holy wyrd. Balls black
huge heavy. Crotch jockey smuggling bowling sphere
through customs’ drooping lid, ricket-legged. Someone struck me
with a candlestick in my pantry. I in paper, wake later dazed
and shaved, have been shiv-stuck and sorted, junk knocked about
and volcano pathway tied in a not. Though hurt in pankey sack
expand to suit the wooly thumble. Fortunate I was to rise,
writhe, day to lay and pill bottle in grubbed-out clutch.
* * * *
I had surgery on an inguinal hernia. Now that was a fun time. (Click here for photos!) I wrote this poem the next day while packed in ice, swollen, feeling battered and bruised, swimming on painkillers, and generally zoned out. The first several lines were meant to capture the sort of mumbling surrealism that I experienced at the time. I don't remember why I was watching mumenshantz videos on YouTube, but it's a strangely fitting image for my state of mind and a jarring example of my drug-induced stupor. I was eating a moonpie at the time, and thinking that it would be a good time to play mumbly peg, due to the painkillers. Somewhat random images, but they were of the moment and captured the hernial zeitgeist.
The first image that preceded the poem was the sasquatch thumb. I love the word sasquatch. Having her or his thumb, I thought, would be a strangely wonderful trophy, while still being bizarre, like carrying a rabbit's foot as a charm. Plus, the thumb would be physical proof of the existence of the creature without being enough of the creature to actually prove anything. If I had one I would carry it with me in a little bag and show it to curious onlookers. What does it have to do with the hernia poem? Well, that's up to the curious onlooker to decide. (BTW, did you click there?)
Bowling ball imagery... yes.
This poem first appeared in the third edition of Jessy Randall's short-run 'zine,
It is published online in the Canadian journal,
ditch, the poetry that matters